Esbats

New Moon Rituals

New Moon Rituals

A Portal of Change

By , About.com

 

Rituals are a way to mark turning points in your life. They can be used to symbolically welcome changes in your life. They can be simple rituals or elaborate ones. The most important thing is your full presence in the moment.

The new Moon is a magical time of beginnings, when you can recharge goals, or set new ones.

Rituals bring meaning to our lives by “charging” an intention with power. We’re always setting intentions, and this is a way to do it in a more conscious way. There is power in coming up with visions for your life, and keeping them in your sights as they come into being. But even as you fully commit to those visions, stay flexible, since new doors may open that you didn’t expect. At the new Moon, goals and wishes take root, as you reach out for spiritual wisdom, draw on unseen allies and open the door to magical change. You might get what you ask for, or something even better that you can’t imagine yet.

It’s important to come up with a ritual that has meaning for you, instead of trying to follow any set guidelines (unless you’re part of an established ritual group). You’re the one that knows your personal story best, and what to lift out of that narrative, what will infuse your ritual with power. Here are some general guidelines to shape your rituals using the unique symbols and totems from your life.

Gathering your Sacred Supplies Your altar is where you collect your sacred objects — pictures, found objects and the like. Using herbs with healing or symbolic properties adds to your ritual. Stones and crystals are another powerful ally. Candles are magical, and in its form contains all four of the elements. A small journal on hand allows you to keep a record of your intentions.

Preparing for the Ritual This is the most important part of ritual, since your commitment is the key. Take a ritual bath with sea salt to clear your field of any negative energies. Sage is an herb used by the Native Americans to clear a space, and make it sacred for ritual. It’s available in most health food stores these days, and easiest to use in its wand form. Light the end and blow on it until there is a smoldering glow. Use it around your own body, and in the space of your ritual. Clear your mind with meditation, using music or just quieting down in your cleared, sacred area.

Grounding This is something that’s important anytime, for staying connected to earth energy. Signs that you’re not grounded are mania, nervousness, racing thoughts and the like. Too often we forget to feel the earth under our feet. I’ve mentioned Starhawk a few times on the site, and her tree grounding excercise is one of my own daily rituals. In a nutshell, it’s visualizing the roots going down into the Earth, through the layers, into the core, and then drawing that energy back up through your feet again. It moves through each chakra, coming out the top and down around you. Try this or another variation of grounding before you set new Moon intentions.

Your New Moon Wishes After you’ve cleared a sacred space and settled your energy, you’re ready to set your intentions. Make a list of what you’d like to draw into your life, and Dream Big! The new Moon is a moment to conjure what seems out of reach, and creating the vision is the first step to making it a reality. But these are not just words on paper. As you write them down as intentions, you are committing to doing your part to make them real. Some call it co-creating, since you’re opening to universal energies to set dreams in motion.

Dreams of the Soul Your intentions come from the longings that keep coming up. In the days leading up to the new Moon, give some thought to those longings, and see what images, dreams and streams of thought come up. Use symbolic associations to go along with your intentions. Weave in the element for the new Moon, and think about the houses and planets that are affected by it. For an earth new Moon, for example, you might plant seeds that represent your intention. Rituals are a way to work with universal energies, and draw attention to the particular life lessons, or arena (house, planet, etc) that it illuminates for you.

Symbolic Acts Here’s where you get to be creative. If your intentions are to write a book, or broadcast your ideas out to the world, tie them to a helium balloon and send them off. Write them on a stick and offer it to the fire. To open to love, put lavender and a rose quartz in a small pouch, along with the qualities you’re seeking. If you’re inspired, add a symbolic act to your intention-setting ritual.

Keep them Alive A big part of success with new Moon intentions is what comes after. Find ways to keep them in the front of your awareness. Put them in a visible spot, or keep them in your wallet. Make notes in your journal about your progress. At the full Moon , find ways to take action on those intentions, and celebrate any signs of change.

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The New Moon: A Time of Rejuvenation

The New Moon: A Time of Rejuvenation

By , About.com

 

A Time of Rebirth:

The time each month in which the moon is dark and cannot be seen is known as the new moon. It’s a period in direct contrast to the full moon. Although some Wiccans and Pagans consider this a good time to do magical workings, others believe it is a time in which the magical self should be rested and rejuvenated.

Getting Your Mojo Back In Order:

Depending on how actively magical a life you lead, you may find yourself needing to take a breather every now and then, a time when you do no workings, and simply get in touch with your spiritual and emotional inner self. Use the three days that occur before, during and immediately after the new moon as a time when you give your “witchiness” a rest, and instead focus on rejuvenation.

How can you do this? After all, you’re busy, right? You have a job, kids, committments to keep… but you owe it to yourself to take a break once in a while. It’s not selfish to think of yourself on occasion — in fact, if you DO take the time to focus on you, you’ll be a happier and healthier person. Here are some ways you can get yourself feeling revitalized during the new moon:

  • Take a cleansing bath. Use herbal sachets, light candles, and scented oils if you like them. Shut off the phone, lock the bathroom door, and enjoy.
  • Go for a walk in the woods. Humans aren’t the only ones whose bodies move in tune with the moon’s cycles. See if the trees and sky feel different to you during this phase of the moon. Notice changes in energy in the natural world.
  • Take a catnap. If you’re feeling run-down and beat, nothing beats a quick 30-minute nap. Don’t sleep too long, though, or you’ll just feel off-kilter the rest of the day.
  • Meditate. Make the time to get comfortable in your favorite chair or a spot on the floor, and meditate. If you have trouble meditating on your own, get a recorded guided meditation to follow along with.
  • Do something with your hands. If you’re a crafty type, now is a good time to do work that is physical, rather than mental or spiritual. Build something, paint a picture, chop some wood.
  • Get together with friends. Often, we forget how important it is to connect to people other than our spouse and kids. Get a group together and go out, even if it’s just for lunch.
  • Try something new. If you’ve always wanted to take a yoga class, learn Irish step dancing, or try out French lessons, now’s a great time. Think of the new moon as a time of rebirth, and a new you will emerge as the moon begins to move into its waxing cycle.
  • Plant something. Many gardeners swear by moon phase planting — the phase between the new moon and the full moon, when the moon is waxing, is when you should start your seedlings for plants that grow above ground. It’s also a good time to re-pot and trim up any houseplants that may have gotten scraggly.
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New Moon Magic

New Moon Magic

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New Moon Magic:

When the Moon is new, the Luminaries — the  Sun and Moon — are aligned in the same Zodiac sign.  That makes it a charged time with concentrated energies of that sign.  A New Moon is a symbolic point of attention, and a symbolic portal for new beginnings.

New Moons are a great time to set intentions for things you’d like to create, develop, cultivate, make manifest. There are many ways to initiate this communion with the Universe from lighting a candle to elaborate rituals. What matters is that you’re committing yourself to your vision, and open to receiving guidance, healing, support from Spirit.

Why Follow the Moon?:

 

When you tune into the Moon’s phases, it’s reassuring to know that there are many chances during the year to tap into lunar energy. Like the tides, the Moon ebbs and flows, a rhythm that women understand intimately. New Moons are a blank page on which to speak your dreams out loud, and Full Moons are for taking action and celebrating the fruit of your efforts.

In the chaotic and temporal world, looking to something larger that is also part of yourself can fill you with awe and make you feel connected. For whatever path you’re on, opening to working with planetary energies links you to the power of the divine.

 

Preparing for the New Moon:

It’s a good idea to spend some time reflecting in the days leading up to the new Moon. Knowing exactly what you want to draw into your life is not always easy. Part of preparing for the new Moon is making sure you are clear about your intentions. Sometimes it’s a quality you’d like to cultivate like forgiveness, courage — other times it’s a more specific request like a promotion at work or new place to live.

What is a new Moon Ritual?:

 

This depends on your personal tastes, the pace of your life and the time you have to devote to it. Some simply light a candle, while others gather objects and pictures for their altar. Lately, I’ve been writing my intentions on a 7-day candle and leaving it in a prominent (and safe) place. With a candle, you can return to it and relight it while meditating on your intentions.

Ritual helps focus your entire being on the quest at hand. In the days leading up to the new Moon, you might gather pictures and totems that symbolize your goal. Creating a New Moon collage gives you a visual reminder of your dreams.

 

What does it mean in each different sign?:

 

Every new Moon is different, and this gives you the chance to claim the energies of each different sign. Even if you don’t have planets in the sign for a given month, it falls somewhere in your birth chart. We each have elements of the entire Zodiac in our make-up, with some more emphasized than others. Find out where the new Moon falls in your chart for clues as to what to “call in” that month.

 

How is it different from the Full Moon:

The new Moon has a more inward feel, has a void or empty quality, and therefore can be frightening to those not comfortable with uncertainty. Can you learn to trust the dark? It’s the moment when the old passes away and the new is not yet here. That’s why it’s a powerful time for sending out your prayer, wishes, desires to the Universe.

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All About The New Moon

Witchy Comments & Graphics

NEW MOON

Time: From Dark Moon to Waxing Moon (depends).

New moon – The magic should be performed between dawn and sunset for the best use of this magic.

Dark Moon – As odd as this may sound, the strongest pull of the dark moon is around 10:00 a.m.

Goddess Aspect: Maiden

Associated Goddesses: Callieach, Banshee, Hecate, Kali, Morrigan.

Magickal Attributes:

BANISHING Releasing the Old, Removing Unwanted Negative Energies, Wisdom, Psychic Abilities, Scrying, Reversing Circumstances.

NEW BEGINNINGS Weight loss, Goal setting, Planning, Cleaning, Personal Cleansing, General beginnings and considerations.

Workings on this day are for: Starting new ventures, new beginnings, love, romance, health, or job hunting.

New moon – beauty, health, and self-improvement; farms and gardens; job hunting; love and romance; networking.

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Simple Toothpaste

Simple Toothpaste

Ingredients

Baking Soda

Salt Water

Glycerin

Peppermint oil (if possible, if not, try dried parsley just make sure it doesn’t get stuck between your teeth!)

Mix 1/3 cup of baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt, water and glycerin until you have a past you are happy with. Use more or less water for the type of paste you wish–thinner or thicker.

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How To Draw Down the Moon

How To Draw Down the Moon

By , About.com Guide

 

In this beautiful and powerful rite, the practitioner invokes the Goddess directly into herself (or himself, as the case may be). In some variations, a High Priestess (HPs) may go into a trancelike state and speak the words of the Goddess, or it may be a formal monologue calling upon the Goddess in her many forms. Regardless of how you practice it, Drawing Down the Moon is best performed on the night of the full moon1, or on one of the nights immediately before. While it’s more suitable to be performed outside, if the weather is inclement or your neighbors are easily startled, you can hold the ritual indoors. 

Difficulty: Average
Time Required: 30 – 60 minutes

Here’s How:

  1. Stand at your altar with your arms crossed over your chest, and feet together. Face towards the full moon. Say:

    Goddess of the Moon, You have been known by many names in many lands in many times. You are universal and constant. In the dark of night, You shine down upon us and bathe us in Your light and love. I ask You, O Divine One, to honor me by joining with me, and allowing me to feel Your presence within my heart.

  2. Move your feet apart to about shoulder width, and raise your arms up and out to welcome the Goddess into you. The next part is one that you can memorize and learn, or you can speak spontaneously from the heart. You will begin to feel a surge of energy, a palpable tingle – don’t worry, that’s the Goddess making Herself known to you. Feel free to change these words as you like. You are speaking for Her, in Her voice, so let Her say what She wishes. Say:

    “I am the Mother of all life, the One who watches over all. I am the wind in the sky, the spark in the fire, the seedling in the earth, the water in the river.

  3. Continue:

    “I am the vessel from which All Things spring forth.

    Honor Me from within your heart! Remember that acts of love and pleasure are My rituals, and that there is beauty in all things.

    Honor Me on this night of the full moon! I have been with you since the moment you were created, and shall remain with you always.

    Let there be beauty and strength, wisdom and honor, humility and courage within you. If you need Me, call upon Me and I shall come to you, for I am everywhere, always.

    Honor Me as you seek knowledge! I am the Maiden, the Mother and the Crone, and I live within you.

  4. Feel the power of the Goddess within you. When you are ready, conclude with:

    I look down upon the sands of the desert, I crash the tides upon the shore, I shine on the mighty trees of the forests, and watch with joy as Life continues every cycle.

    Be true to Me, honoring that which I have created, and I shall be true to you in return.

    With harm to none, so it shall be.”

  5. Take a few moments to stand and bask in Her glow, and to meditate upon that which you have just experienced. Once the energy surge has subsided, lower your arms, and proceed with your ceremony as you normally would at the conclusion of a ritual.

Tips:

  1. Drawing Down the Moon is an altered state of consciousness, a ritual possession by the Divine. It is not uncommon to feel the energy of the Goddess for quite some time following Drawing Down the Moon, so don’t be alarmed if you feel a heightened sense of clarity over the next few days. You may also feel extremely emotional — it’s not uncommon to cry or laugh spontaneously during this rite.
  2. The above ritual is one that I created myself, but for more variations on Drawing Down the Moon, there are excellent versions in Wicca For One by Raymond Buckland2 (pp. 87 – 89 and The Grimoire of Lady Sheba (pp. 167- 168).

 

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Make a Moon Candle

Make a Moon Candle

By , About.com Guide

 

You can use a Moon Candle for your Esbat celebrations. As part of your rituals, you may wish to wrap it in a black cloth during the dark phase of the moon, and then gradually uncover it as the moon waxes. When the moon begins to wane again, move the black cloth back over it, to symbolize the ever-changing face of the moon.

If you’re going to decorate a pre-made candle (which is the easiest way to do this project), it’s best to use an unscented candle for this project, just because various scents can be distracting. A pillar is ideal, but you can certainly use a votive or taper. Use the same candle all year long, or for one 28-day lunar cycle, whichever you prefer.

You’ll need:

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • One white pillar candle
  • Acrylic paints in your choice of colors
  • Candle painting medium
  • Paintbrush
  • Ribbons in colors you associate with the moon (silver, black, white, or blue)

Use the rubbing alcohol to clean any excess oil or grime from the candle before you being. You can just pour a little bit on a soft cloth and wipe it down. Blend your acrylic paint in equal parts with candle painting medium — this is basically a product that helps your paint adhere to the candle. You can find it at any craft store.

Paint lunar or celestial patterns on your candle, and allow the paint to dry. Add ribbons in silver, black and white — be sure to move them out of the way before you burn the candle in ritual! The one in the photo was made with a blue ribbon that had celestial designs on it, as well as blue and silver glitter paint.

Helpful hint – if you don’t like the idea of painting a candle, buy a plain glass hurricane, and paint the glass instead. That way, you can use any candle you like inside it, and you don’t have to continuously repaint new candles.

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Full Moon Ritual – Letting Go

 

Full Moon Ritual

Letting Go

By , About.com Guide

 

The monthly lunar cycle gives you many chances to do rituals to mark a personal turning point or let go.  At the New Moon, you can go into the dark and be symbolically reborn.  New Moon rituals1 help you summon your whole Self, and in that magic moment, commit to intentions.

At the full Moon2, the energy builds and builds….there’s an explosive outgoing aspect to it.  All of nature grows and is more vital at the full Moon.  This surge allows you to take action on behalf of those new Moon intentions you set two week prior.  A full Moon ritual might involve taking one solid step, with a symbolic action.  And it can be a powerful time to release, cast out, unburden yourself, purge, etc.  You celebrate your emergence by stepping out of an old skin, identity, behavior, attitude, relationship.  The ritual helps you by marking this inner transformation in a formal way.

A full Moon ritual might involve purification by one of the elements.  Most often, it’s fire, and done by casting something you don’t want into the flames.  One idea:  1)  Write what you’re releasing down on a stick.  2)  resolve to let go as you throw it into the fire.  3)  Throw the stick into the fire.  This can be done as a group, with everyone sitting ’round the fire…or in your own private ceremony.  Each person can seal their action of letting go by speaking it aloud, if there’s trust in the circle.

Water can be used to cleanse in rituals.  I remember a very meaningful full Moon ceremony I had at my house with three other women.  We had filled a blue bowl with water and some rose petals.  Each of us wrote down what we wanted to draw into our lives on a piece of paper.  After we read them aloud, we put our hands in the bowl to signify the cleansing of the old, to open to the new.  It’s still one of my favorite memories.  Mainly it worked because we all trusted each other to be open hearted and share our dreams.  When that’s there, you can evoke the magic of shifting consciousness at will because the support is palpable.

Full Moon Release Ritual Items you’ll need:  Floating candles, a large bowl, water, matches, a pen.

  • 1.  Create sacred space with candles, sage smudging, and setting up altars with powerful totems.  For some rituals, I’ll use an owl’s wing that a friend gave me, to represent wisdom.
  • 2.  If possible, stand or sit under the Moon.  Allow yourself to feel a direct relationship to it, as a mover of the living waters of the Earth and within our own bodies. 
  • 3.  Do a grounding exercise, to bring you out of the chatter of small talk and into ritual space.  Feel the earth under your feet and shake out the tension in the body.
  • 4.  Place the large water-filled bowl in front of you, or in the middle of your gathering on a table.
  • 5.  Each person writes what they’re releasing on the floating candle.  It’s not important that it shows up, just that the intention is there.
  • 6.  As you place the candle into the bowl, declare what you’re releasing.
  • 7.  Light the candle.
  • 8.  Allow yourself to feel the transfer of what you’re releasing to the candle.  As a group focus on letting go into the water, holding hands if that feels right.
  • 9.  Celebrate this release by sharing a feast under the full Moon!

 

Allow the candle to keep burning in the bowl as a symbol of the letting go process.  The flame is a purifier, and symbolizes the sparks of inspiration as well.  If you blow out your floating candle, and your bowl is in your home, relighting it will remind you of your commitment.  Place inspiring pictures and totems around it that remind you of who you’re becoming.  Above all, give yourself kudos for honoring your own growth.

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