Millions of celestial fans from Santorini to Cairo, from Dubai to Harare, in cities across the Eastern Hemisphere are in for an epic treat with the red moon and the red planet lit up against the backdrop of stars next week. On the night of July 27th, into the morning of July 28th, we will experience the longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century, lasting 1 hour and 43 minutes. Although the earth is right between the moon and the sun during an eclipse, some of the sun’s light still reaches the moon around earth’s shadow, causing the moon to appear red. This magical blood moon gets its namesake for the lasting red tint that is cast over the moon during the eclipse.
On top of the marvelous moon magic, Mars is the closest to Earth that it has been since 2003—15 years ago. And even though it’s a short 35.8 million miles away from the Earth, it will still be visible to the naked eye. Mars is in opposition, meaning Earth is between the sun and Mars, causing the planet to shine brightly in the night sky. In astrology, Mars is the planet of action, energy and desire. When Mars is in retrograde, it helps us engage with our deepest desires and to go back over our past, reviewing the ways we handle conflict within ourselves or with others, and giving us the opportunity to learn from it.
While we may be able to see Mars from our back porch, North Americans will miss the bloody show on the moon. Unfortunately, the eclipse will only be visible in the Eastern Hemisphere, missing all of North America. But even though we can’t see it, we can certainly capitalize on the magical energy for intentions and rituals. Collectively we are called to clear out old ways of doing things and to stand firmly in our truth, resisting the pull of the tide back into the old ways of fear and judgment. It’s a time to work within our home, family and relationships and to challenge beliefs that no longer resonate as a personal truth.
As with any major astrological event, doomsayers predict that this long eclipse marks the end of the world. Quoting the Book of Joel 2:30-31 “And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke….the sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood.” Many eclipses have come and gone, apocalypse predictions coming along with them, and the world is still definitely in existence (at least as I type this). But what is also in existence across the world is blood, and fire and pillars of smoke, and extreme divisiveness. There is fear and uncertainty, judgment and shame. Eclipses have the power to catapult us into drastically new ways of being. Ways that don’t involve fear. I think that is why they are so often associated with the end of the world. It truly can be the end of our own behaviors or shadow parts that are no longer serving us, and an opportunity to jump into a future dominated by love and acceptance.
The eclipse energy offers us the chance to practice hope, trust and faith, against a backdrop of darkness. It is a reminder that even in the darkest night, it only takes one candle to shed light, and that we only brighten the world by lighting other’s candles with our own light. In the words of James Keller, “a candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.” This eclipse is an opportunity for us to come together to generate faith in community, rather than fear—to collectively light our candles, as we decide what we stand for and how we can take action to make a change.
I started offering women’s wisdom moon groups in August of 2017, when we had the massive eclipse across the United States. I wanted a way to hold myself accountable to my own practices and rituals around the new moon and full moon. The gatherings grew into something so much more than I could have imagined. Each gathering is a unique and different combination of women, some regulars, and some new people. We come together and share stories, share wisdom, and share space for our struggles and our hopes, our trials and our dreams. We shed tears together, and laugh together, and we hold each other accountable for the work we intend for ourselves.
There is power in women gathering together, and there is value in it. It’s easy to get lost in the chaos of our daily lives, and the distraction of technology. The moon offers a reminder to come back to nature, to mother earth, and to support each other collectively in accomplishing change. We use the new moons to manifest that which we are seeking, and on the full moons we do a burning ceremony, offering the opportunity to release anything that is no longer serving us, so that when the new moon comes, we have space in our lives for that change to blossom.
This July blood moon, we open up our circle to sisters, mothers, grandmothers, and friends around the world through a virtual ceremony through a Facebook live event. Join us on Friday the 27th at 8 pm, for an evening of ritual, ceremony, introspection and celebration, as we come together under the blood moon. Then in the comfort of your own home, give yourself permission to howl at the moon. And just maybe we will hear each other’s wild woman calls from around the world. Ahhhhhhooooooooooo!!!
Rumi: “A new moon teaches gradualness and deliberations and how one gives birth to oneself slowly. Patience with small details makes a perfect work, like the universe”
Author: Cait Allison
Facebook Live Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/2115376702039722/