The Moon and magic

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Stone
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The Moon and magic

Postby Stone » 21 Apr 2014, 03:27

I am still learning my way around the forum so can only hope I have placed thus post in the right place!

Before I start I have to say I am no academic :oops:

If you are someone who practices magic then why does the phase of the moon have any relevance to what you are doing? What evidence is there that the phase of the moon has any influence on workings or what people call spells? For instance I was taught that the dark moon is the most powerful but can find nothing to substantiate this at all. I understand about the moons influence on the earth etc but remain unconvinced that the moon phase has any relevance to workings but that may just be my genuine ignorance :blink:

Also, watching Shrek 2 last week and as he read the fairy godmothers potion bottle about obtaining true loves kiss at midnight he sighs "Why is it always midnight?" What is the relevance of midnight to magical workings, if any? Why should a working carried out in the middle of the night have more power than one carried out at any other time of day?

I would really welcome a discussion on this topic if anyone cares to join in :)
Best wishes

Stone

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Whitemane » 21 Apr 2014, 10:55

Midnight is a point of transition, and transitions are points where small actions can have major effects. Also, in a world lit only by candles and without clocks, midnight is a remote and mysterious place, somewhere you have to be determined to get to, and a sign of determination to act ( not necessarily to succeed.)

As for the moon, it moves oceans, so it may well have magical effects.
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Stone » 21 Apr 2014, 11:06

As for the moon, it moves oceans, so it may well have magical effects.
This is what I have read in many books on magic etc but I would like to understand it, the mechanics of it as it were. The moon does indeed move oceans, that is not disputed, but why does the phase of the moon have relevance to magical workings?

If midnight is a transition point then so must midday be? So why is it always midnight? :wink:
Best wishes

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Sciethe » 21 Apr 2014, 11:34

Hi again Stone, another very good question.

Short answer, it's traditional.

Long answer is very long, but points to weave together with the thoughts of others:

Back in the day a millennium or more ago, the science of astronomy was regarded as magic by the general population at least, as was maths (numerology), writing (being able to see words in drawn shapes) etc. This mystique has been fostered for a long time and links made between certain traditionally magical things. One of them is the moon phases which are physically inexplicable to a non-scientific mind and therefore ripe for magical interpretation. Call the whole world view ancient magical science if you like.

You might think, ah! Seen through that, it's worthless because it's not physically true. But put it alongside what we were saying about ancestors in the previous post and ancient magical science starts to carry some force.

N.B. The core of magic is intention realized.

Join those last two up and the practitioner redoubles their force with the powers of the ancestors by using tradition. Not outer power like Harry Potterism, but inner strength in knowing that a proper and traditional organising principle is being used. Intention is supported, and inner work that the practitioner is carrying out gains in force.

Added to that the Ancestors are honoured.

Added to that, any external beings that might or might not exist recognise the forms being applied by the practitioner and are bound by them. They evolved with us, and have their existence rooted in the same traditions. Not saying that external beings exist, just if they do. Psychology has given us internal beings as well, see the excellent "A Little Book on the Human Shadow" (Bly).

Short answer again: if magic works, alchemie of the soul (and that DOES work), and all the other magical bits and bobs- some I like and some I think are stupid- then tradition is the way forward.
Blessings,
S
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Sciethe » 21 Apr 2014, 12:06

tradition is the way forward.
Actually, no. Tradition is a way forward.
Don't use it that much myself, too interested in conservation things.
:D
S
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby DJ Droood » 21 Apr 2014, 15:43

I like when I am away from home and I glance up and notice the moon and it comforts me to know my loved ones back home can see the same moon. Is that magic?
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Sciethe » 21 Apr 2014, 15:58

I like when I am away from home and I glance up and notice the moon and it comforts me to know my loved ones back home can see the same moon. Is that magic?
No, it's just madly sweet and romantic you lovely old softie. :grin:
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby DJ Droood » 21 Apr 2014, 16:06

I like when I am away from home and I glance up and notice the moon and it comforts me to know my loved ones back home can see the same moon. Is that magic?
No, it's just madly sweet and romantic you lovely old softie. :grin:
*ducks*
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby xidia » 21 Apr 2014, 17:42

@OP

In my view...
It matters because the spell caster believes it does. I tend towards a Chaos Magic view of how "magic" works, where "magic" is directed intent which influences the great connecting energy web of the universe. I believe all traditions use that same web, and use focii from those traditions to amplify the effect. The symbology of each tradition is the lens through which the energy is directed.

(Working with spirits is different again.)

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Dathi » 21 Apr 2014, 18:46

Nice thread, interesting question and some fun answers. I've nothing to add, but in the absence of a "Like" facility on DHP (hint, hint!) I just wanted to express thanks for respective insights, efforts and curiosity.

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Whitemane » 21 Apr 2014, 19:02


If midnight is a transition point then so must midday be? So why is it always midnight? :wink:
Midday is easy to get to.
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Stone » 22 Apr 2014, 08:33


If midnight is a transition point then so must midday be? So why is it always midnight? :wink:
Midday is easy to get to.
So is Midnight?

So if magic is all about intent, I come back to my original question of why does the moon phase matter? What does it add, if anything, and why?
Best wishes

Stone

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Sciethe » 22 Apr 2014, 09:31

So if magic is all about intent, I come back to my original question of why does the moon phase matter? What does it add, if anything, and why?
Hi again Stone,
Interesting. The above answers would have satisfied most people. That means that you're actually trying to unravel the truth of the matter and put it into a concrete context/terms.
Don't think you'll be able to do that. Any vaguely competent book will give you the correspondences and the link to the female functions, but somehow I don't think that's what you mean. Are you really asking "does magic work and if so how?"

For myself I've found that only personal transformational magic works. But not like in the fluffy Pagan books, its a journey of deep discovery to find the way, it's long and horrible/inspiring/wonderful and it changes the person. It's intensely individual as is the working of so-called magic. It would be easy to call it just psychology if it weren't for the spiritual connectedness one learns to appreciate. The closest explanation to what I feel is actually in a book of fiction (not so fiction I suspect) called the Way of Wyrd by Brian Bates. I didn't try to learn like that, it's just the closest vibe.

Some people swear by moon correspondences. I can't argue with them. If it works for the individual in their private universe...
Blessings, :)
S
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Stone » 22 Apr 2014, 09:46

Hi Sciethe

Thank you for your thoughts on this :) I will look up that book (any excuse to gather more books is fine by me :) )

I believe that magic is simply what science cannot explain yet - that it does exist and that it can work. I believe very much that it is the intent put in to the working by the pracitioner that makes it work. I have read through many books with tables of correspondences but am a bit bewildered by them if I am honest. For example 'spells' to bring something to you should apparently be carried out during a waxing moon, 'banishing spells' under a waning moon - but why? What is it about the waxing/waning moon that aids the working?

Im not explaining myself very well I fear so thank you for your patience :oops:
Best wishes

Stone

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby xidia » 22 Apr 2014, 10:01

For example 'spells' to bring something to you should apparently be carried out during a waxing moon, 'banishing spells' under a waning moon - but why? What is it about the waxing/waning moon that aids the working?
In the traditions that believe the phase of the moon matters, a waning moon is seen as a withdrawal or "flowing away" of energy, and thus good for workings which require that, whereas a waxing moon is the opposite.

To me, sending energy away from here still results it going to somewhere else, so I'd say that you could still use a waxing moon, with your point of focus as the destination (more energy goes here) rather than the origin (less energy goes here). Or you could do a banishing focused on the "origin" by pulling in other, positive energy to that point and thus a waxing moon would still be appropriate.

If you're interested in books, I thoroughly recommend Way of Wyrd, which is based on historical research, written as fiction for ease of reading. I also recommend "hands-on chaos magic" by Vitimis, as the most nuts-and-bolts guide to magic I've found.

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Gwion » 22 Apr 2014, 10:27

Are you really asking "does magic work and if so how?"
If we knew how magic worked we’d call it science.

As for the phases of the moon: various animals, particularly marine ones, seem to be influenced by this (for example, famously, the egg-laying activities of leatherneck turtles; probably because the moon affects the tides of their habitat.) It’s theoretically possible that our ancestors saw correlations between animal behaviour and lunar phases and, lacking a scientific explanation, attributed a magical correspondence.

The significance of midnight could just be that for magic to be magic the mechanisms had to be kept secret. It’s much easier to keep your ritual secret at midnight than midday. (I, personally, find liminal times and places much more magical.)

What does it add, if anything, and why?
Nasty medicine, and nasty placebos, work best. Having to wait for the right lunar phase, season or time of day can add an extra psychological boost to the “intent”.

However,
It matters because the spell caster believes it does.
I think, this is the main reason why these things matter now.

So there’s a couple of theories, for which I have no proof whatever, as to the origins of these things. Like you, perhaps, I'm always looking for explanations but there's also a bit of me that allows that there may be some I never find. What matters is whether something works for you.

P.S. Thank you for asking these questions and to those who’ve supplied answers – it’s why I visit here; to be challenged in my thinking.
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby DaRC » 22 Apr 2014, 13:21

For example 'spells' to bring something to you should apparently be carried out during a waxing moon, 'banishing spells' under a waning moon - but why? What is it about the waxing/waning moon that aids the working?
I think it relates to agricultural processes such as planting or gardening by the moon
http://www.the-gardeners-calendar.co.uk ... anting.asp
and is influenced by the moons affect on water, which is known. So planting should occur on waxing / full moon and harvesting or pruning on a waning / new moon.

Certain theories also suggest that on a waxing / full moon a person's blood is up and that is a bad time for medical operations, whilst a waning moon is a better time. There is no extant scientific evidence to support, however, it has been suggested that any evidence that would support it has been suppressed (this view is certainly favoured by those prone to supporting conspiracy theories).
Additionally most A&E dep'ts are aprocryphally aware of an increase in activity when a full moon falls on a Friday or Saturday. Once again gov'ts and the NHS (in the UK) deny this.
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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Mountainheart » 22 Apr 2014, 13:23

@OP

In my view...
It matters because the spell caster believes it does. I tend towards a Chaos Magic view of how "magic" works, where "magic" is directed intent which influences the great connecting energy web of the universe. I believe all traditions use that same web, and use focii from those traditions to amplify the effect. The symbology of each tradition is the lens through which the energy is directed.
I agree with this... whatever assists an individual focus on achieving an effect is helpful to that individual. Whether you call the process magic, intention, prayer, the power of faith etc doesn't matter to me: it is all tapping into the same universal energy. IMO

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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby Aphritha » 22 Apr 2014, 17:23

Additionally most A&E dep'ts are aprocryphally aware of an increase in activity when a full moon falls on a Friday or Saturday. Once again gov'ts and the NHS (in the UK) deny this.
It seems some of our local police confirm this, though regardless of a weekend(though I suppose a weekend would be more active in those circumstances).
I also find it funny that my husband(who doesn't 'moon watch') can guess the moon phase based on the attitudes of his coworkers.
Perhaps the moon doesn't specifically effect the 'magic' a person is trying to do, but the energy of the magician themselves.
Just a personal thought/observation.


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Re: The Moon and magic

Postby DJ Droood » 22 Apr 2014, 17:38

Additionally most A&E dep'ts are aprocryphally aware of an increase in activity when a full moon falls on a Friday or Saturday. Once again gov'ts and the NHS (in the UK) deny this.
It seems some of our local police confirm this, though regardless of a weekend(though I suppose a weekend would be more active in those circumstances).
I also find it funny that my husband(who doesn't 'moon watch') can guess the moon phase based on the attitudes of his coworkers.
Perhaps the moon doesn't specifically effect the 'magic' a person is trying to do, but the energy of the magician themselves.
Just a personal thought/observation.

Something interesting from Scientific America...although they put the lunar effect in the category of "urban myth" there was this possible explanation as to why it persists...
One intriguing idea for its origins comes to us courtesy of psychiatrist Charles L. Raison, now at Emory University, and several of his colleagues. According to Raison, the lunar lunacy effect may possess a small kernel of truth in that it may once have been genuine. Raison conjectures that before the advent of outdoor lighting in modern times, the bright light of the full moon deprived people who were living outside—including many who had severe mental disorders—of sleep. Because sleep deprivation often triggers erratic behavior in people with certain psychological conditions, such as bipolar disorder (formerly called manic depression), the full moon may have been linked to a heightened rate of bizarre behaviors in long-bygone eras. So the lunar lunacy effect is, in Raison and his colleagues’ terms, a “cultural fossil.”
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