I like to think of eclipses as the goddess winking because eclipses serve as spotlights – like turning the lights off and then flashing them back on. Eclipses support shifts in consciousness, bringing changes. They give us the opportunity to see, feel, and respond differently. They also expedite the inevitable. Sometimes it’s difficult to see what is right in front of us. During an eclipse, a celestial body temporarily blocks the light of another celestial body. For us on Earth, it’s either the Moon blocking the light of the Sun or the Earth blocking the light of the Moon. Whenever one light is obscured, the energy shifts, and we must adjust. Both solar and lunar eclipses are shadow occasions, which means they reveal what is hidden.
Eclipses affect our personal fields just as they change the Earth’s electromagnetic energy field. During them, we can expect emotions to stir and feelings to rise from the darkness within. The currents that run through our nervous systems are sensitive and pick up these influences. In this blog post, I only scratch the surface of this topic – a window into the lunar-solar dance of shadow and light.
GENERAL TECHNICAL ECLIPSE INFO
A Solar Eclipse occurs during a new moon when the Moon’s shadow crosses Earth’s surface (the Moon blocks the Sun). During a new moon solar eclipse, the Sun and Moon come together in the sky (called a conjunction) – with the Moon between the Earth and Sun. Solar eclipses can be partial or total.
NOTE: During an Annular Solar Eclipse, the Moon is farther away from Earth than during a total eclipse, making the Moon appear smaller, which produces a “ring of fire” around the Moon where the Sun is visible.
A Lunar Eclipse occurs during a full moon when the Moon moves into the shadow of the Earth (the Earth blocks the sunlight from reaching the Moon). During a full moon lunar eclipse, the Sun and Moon oppose each other in the sky (called an opposition) – with the Earth between them. Lunar eclipses can be partial or total.
NOTE: A Penumbral Lunar Eclipse is subtle, more so than a partial or complete eclipse (the penumbra is a region of diffuse shadow vs. umbra, which is complete shadow). If it’s noticeable at all, a penumbral eclipse appears like a dark shading on the Moon’s face.
ECLIPSE SEASONS & SIGNS
Eclipses involve the lunar nodes and come in seasons. We usually have three to six eclipses each year. They happen when the Sun is about 15-18 degrees from a lunar node. Eclipse season happens twice a year, about six months apart. Since the lunar nodes are in a pair of polarity signs for about 18 months, eclipses occur in the same pair of signs for about 18 months. Since November 2021, eclipses have been happening in the signs Taurus and Scorpio and will continue to do so until 2023. This month, we have a Solar Eclipse in Scorpio on October 25, 2022. Then we have a Lunar Eclipse in Taurus on November 8, 2022, and a couple more eclipses in these signs in 2023.
The signs eclipses fall in reveal the energy we’re working with collectively. As mentioned above, eclipses directly align with the current south and north lunar node signs. The south node represents the past and old karma (what we’ve come from). The north node is our path of growth, destiny, and how we want to evolve (what we’re moving toward). With the current Taurus/Scorpio example, our past is symbolized by Scorpio’s tendency to seek power and control and consume its desires. We’re quite familiar with this deep, dramatic shadow as skeletons keep coming out of the closet, but the south node is not all shadow. We can understand it as the culmination of prior karma. Some of that can be gifts and talents ready to be actualized and shared. But there is undoubtedly plenty to purge. North node in Taurus draws us into a more peaceful existence that returns to basic needs, stability, and sustainability. Scorpio is complicated. Taurus likes simplicity. Scorpio, with its traditional ruler Mars, uses the tool of destruction. Taurus, with its ruler Venus, uses the tool of creation. We know the cycle of creation-destruction is inseparable, but the key to our current destiny isn’t separation; it’s connection.
WORKING WITH NEW MOON SOLAR ECLIPSE ENERGY
Solar eclipses happen during a new moon, bringing new beginnings and unexpected opportunities. They help us realize what we need in our lives and welcome it from the Universe. Solar eclipses have more of an external effect, and lunar eclipses bring up more emotional and internal issues. A solar eclipse reveals what is hidden from you in your conscious, waking life and asks, “What do you need to know right now about your life that is currently obscured from your view?”
NOTE: New moons are the best time to set new intentions, but when there’s also a solar eclipse, we recommend waiting about 48 hours after the eclipse before setting intentions or working moon magic. Because eclipses shake things up and bring new awareness, we need time to receive and process them first.
WORKING WITH FULL MOON LUNAR ECLIPSE ENERGY
Lunar eclipses happen during a full moon, so they bring up emotional and internal issues that play out in our relationships. Full moon is a time of culmination – the end of the waxing hemicycle. The full moon can affect the flow in our bodies, as it does the Earth’s tides, as we humans are made up of 70% water. During lunar eclipses, we become aware of the influence others have on us and can see them in a different light. When we see with more awareness and objectivity, we can let go of what isn’t serving the soul.
During a lunar eclipse, we’re challenged to feel more of ourselves, which at full moon often feels like someone else. We easily project our own issues onto others. The full moon combined with an eclipse may be just the trick to seeing more clearly in the mirror of “other.” What we attract in our lives often reflects versions of those very aspects in ourselves, whether or not we like them or take any responsibility for owning them.
WORKING WITH ALL ECLIPSES
In spiritual circles, we reinforce the importance at times like this of being honest and not keeping secrets, as the things you try to hide will be revealed now – either with your assistance or despite it. Better for you to be in control of what is known about you and your actions. If you’ve been hiding something, get ahead of it now and tell those affected by your secrets. The Universe abhors secrets. To the Universe, the only sanctioned mystery is its own.
When the sky darkens, we still gaze in awe as our ancestors did thousands of years ago. We now have a much deeper and more nuanced understanding of eclipse phenomena, yet even with this wisdom, we still find ourselves entranced and enchanted. Use this time to become clear and transparent about your intentions, dealings, and relationships. My favorite saying, “Let go or be dragged,” comes into focus now. Either get right and get aligned or be prepared for a series of challenging days ahead. The choice is yours.
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