Black moon cycle

The next black moon cycle begins with the solar eclipse in Cancer on 21st June 2020. The actual black moon occurs on 20th July 2020. This cycle continues until the next black moon cycle which is in Aries, beginning in March 2023. Astrology with Sarah Varcas

Most people have heard of a blue moon but black moons tend to get less attention, despite their equal significance. Just as a blue moon is the second full moon in a solar month, a black moon is the second new moon in a solar month. This means that during the sun’s passage through one zodiac sign the moon is new twice, with the second of those moons designated a black moon. Because a new moon occurs when the moon is in the same zodiac degree as the sun, both of these new moons occur in the same sign as each other. Black moons occur roughly every two and a half to three years and are always preceded a month earlier by a new moon in the first one or two degrees of the same zodiac sign.

Is a black moon connected to Black Moon Lilith?

No, a black moon has nothing to do with Black Moon Lilith, the latter being the point on the moon’s orbit furthest from the earth (known as lunar apogee).

So what’s the significance of a black moon?

Ordinarily, and in general terms, a new moon is a time of fresh starts: the silence from which new beginnings are born. In the darkness of a new moon we can instinctively sense the stirring of new life and prepare to facilitate its arrival. If we’re anticipating a new start or a process of change in some area of our life, contemplating its development at a new moon can be most productive. Action is not called for at this time, but instead a quiet turning within to contemplate and nurture the roots of our burgeoning creations. These roots may take many forms from material resources, to significant relationships; from a well thought-through plan to faith in a process whose outcome remains unclear. Indeed, we may need all of these and more to prepare for our next step.

The seductive darkness of a new moon invites us inward to draw from our own wisdom. Our energy levels may be relatively low and it is often best to avoid commitments that require great investments of physical energy. The natural tendency in darkness is to retreat, hibernate and rest, ready for the gradual return of the light as the moon waxes towards full. The beginnings heralded by a new moon may have gestated over days, weeks, months or years. Every new moon bears personal significance for each individual, alongside its collective influence and meaning.

A black moon is a particularly powerful new moon which augurs a significant new phase. We can use its energy to prepare for shifts in our inner and outer worlds so powerful they may change the very course of our life. Each black moon signals the beginning of a new cycle which lasts until the next black moon, two and a half to three years later, so these are powerful moments in time which can markedly influence the coming years. It is therefore wise to use their energy well!

How do we use the energy of a black moon well? 

We begin at the first of the two new moons – a month prior to the black moon – which  helps us discern how to best use the black moon energy. This first moon is a time of intense quiet, to be spent as still as possible. A time to listen, not speak; to reflect, not act; to go within, not be drawn without. This moon invites us deep within to discover there the entire universe and know our self as a microcosm of the macrocosm – a thread woven through time and space by the unfolding of life in, through and around us. This moon prepares us to ignite, at the black moon, the sparks of creativity, wisdom, patience, fortitude and commitment which fuel the engine of a life fulfilled.

New opportunities occurring just prior to or at this first moon may falter before they’ve begun. A much-anticipated new start may fast lose its shine leaving us discouraged and disoriented. This is a common experience at the beginning of a black moon cycle, so there’s no need for panic! The first of the two new moons is simply paving the way for the real fresh start at the black moon itself, highlighting where final adjustments may be needed and plans require a final review. We then have a month to instigate any necessary alterations before the black moon arrives and a new phase is born. Whether we sense the coming change as a gentle breeze or a mighty storm, this initial new moon encourages us to embrace the approaching unknown, allowing it to trickle or flood through our life as it must and will. We are on the brink of profound change and commitments made now will be potentised a month later by the black moon.

It can be especially difficult to open our heart to unwanted change: the end of a relationship, the loss of a job or a much-loved home, illness, death… So many things impose themselves against our will. If this is our lot at the beginning of a black moon cycle we can best use the energy of the first moon to invite faith, courage and hope into our lives, even as they feel so far from us. Remembering that we don’t have to feel courageous to be it can be very helpful now! Simply dragging ourselves out of bed to face another lonely day may be the most courageous act in our lives. Likewise, boundless faith is not required to be faithful: merely trusting that the next breath will come, the next heart-beat, can be an act of faith when all hope is lost. And hope is not about Pollyanna happiness and positive thinking but a recognition that life moves in cycles, fluctuating within them as it goes. Everything changes, no matter how stuck and intransigent things may feel. At such times, hope simply whispers a quiet reassurance that nothing remains the same. Even the darkest, longest night eventually turns to day.

Once the black moon arrives, a shift in the fabric of the universe is underway, often manifesting as a new life theme that develops and matures across the coming two to three years. Our attention may shift to new interests and/or occupations. We may meet new people or drift from old ones. What once seemed so important to our well-being loses its appeal and we find deep inner shifts reflected in changes we once could never have contemplated. This is no ordinary new moon but the birth of a whole new phase in our life, which will unfold in ways that can be hard to predict at first, but which, in retrospect, make perfect sense when reviewed from a vantage point of garnered wisdom in a year or so’s time. Then we can see where we were, where we are and where we’re heading in relation to the themes of the defining black moon.

So how do we identify and work with the themes of a black moon?

Each black moon occurs in the same zodiac sign as the new moon that precedes it and its themes are largely dictated by the qualities of that sign. The next black moon occurs on 20th July 2020, with the first new moon of its cycle occurring at the solar eclipse on 21st June 2020. Its cycle continues until the next black moon cycle in Aries, beginning in March 2023.

A black moon in the sign of Cancer highlights the following issues for reflection:

  • Who and what do I truly cherish?
  • Who is my true family?
  • How do I protect the people and things that matter to me?
  • How do I protect myself?
  • How effective are the ways I seek to protect myself and others? Do they create a sense of security or fear?
  • How far can I allow others to be themselves, even if it doesn’t suit me?
  • Do I trust my intuition and if not, why not?
  • How have childhood experiences shaped my experience of the world as an adult? How do I feel about his? How can I change it if I want to?
  • Are my relationships co-dependent or do we seek to support and empower each other in healthy and life-affirming ways?
  • What does the quality of my relationships with others say about the quality of my relationship with myself?
  • Do I care for and look after myself as well as I care for and look after other people?
  • Does it feel like I’m always the one doing the caring but never cared for? If so, why, and what can I do to change that?
  • Do I feel indebted to other people, or that they’re indebted to me in some way?
  • Do I honour my sensitivity and see it as a valuable guidance system in life or do I experience it as a burden that makes life complicated and overwhelming?
  • How do I communicate difficult emotions like anger and hurt? Am I honest and direct or do I tend towards passive-aggression and emotional manipulation?
  • Do I tend to divide the world into friends and foes, or am I able to maintain a less polarised attitude?
  • What is my relationship with guilt? Do I feel guilty about things I have or haven’t done? Do I make others feel guilty about how they’ve treated me?
  • How can I reframe situations that involve guilt, so I can free myself and other people from its negative influence?
  • What can I do to honour my emotions and feelings more fully?

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