The Moon in May 2020

The Full Flower Moon and what it means for you this month

Photo by Vedad Colic on Pexels.com

What is astrology and why do astrologers study The Moon?

Humans have been studying the Moon since at least 25 000 years ago, Luna, the Moon being the closest celestial body to Earth, exerting a physical gravitational effect on the tides, and on every living thing, though the exact nature and extent of that influence is open to debate. The word ‘Astrology’ comes from the early Latin word astrologia, which derives from the Greek ἀστρολογία—from ἄστρον astron (‘star’) and -λογία -logia, (‘study of’—’account of the stars’.)

It’s about the search for meaning on earth as seen in the sky, seeking to understand natural events and human behaviour through observing, the movements relative to Earth of planets and other celestial objects, and making correlations.

Symbolically – because it has no light of its own- The Moon represents our shadowy side, our dreams, hidden health, and the impulses that drive our behaviour whether or not we are consciously aware of them.

The things that we feel ‘in our water.’

More directly and practically, humanity began to measure, record, and predict seasonal changes by paying attention to astronomical cycles. They did this for practical planning purposes.

When would the Auroch arrive and they could organise a hunt?

When would the first lambs or kids arrive?

When would the salmon spawn?

When would the first grapes or berries be ripe enough to eat?

Early people used the skies searching for the first clues, using them as their first calendars and clocks, and nothing remotely laughable or ‘woo-woo’ about it, except for the stories that grew up around all this, and the impact of those stories on the collective psyche of the people making their living in their particular territory…their evolving cultures shaped, or rather driven by their imaginative preoccupation, emotional connection and working relationship with that landscape and its many natural wonders.

Early evidence appears as markings on bones and cave walls  recording the Moon’s influence upon tides and rivers and in time, building a body of knowledge which led in time to the creation of the first calendars.

Progress is not necessarily linear, and perhaps there is a modern tendency to underestimate the intellectual as well as technological prowess of more ancient societies.

There will be a partial solar eclipse on 21 June 2020. The next total solar eclipse will be 14 December 2020, but not viewable in the UK when the next solar eclipse will be August 2026.

The Moon in May: The Headlines

May 07, 2020    6:45 AM               Full Moon in Scorpio
May 14, 2020    10:03 AM             Last Quarter Moon (Waning)
May 22, 2020    1:39 PM               New Moon in Gemini
May 29, 2020    11:30 PM              First Quarter Moon (Waxing)

The New Moon is the first/last lunar phase when the Moon is located between the Earth and the Sun and the moon is largely invisible, hidden in the sun’s glare.

The Full Moon occurs when the Moon is on the opposite of the Earth from the Sun on the same celestial longitude and we can see the entire illuminated portion of the Moon.

What do the moon phases mean for you and me, symbolically?

In general terms, folklore suggests that the waxing Moon phase building up to the Full Moon is the optimum time to grow, build, add to, make or get something. It is all about bringing something new in, or bringing something to completion or fruition. Some may perform magical summoning rituals.

A Full Moon is the optimum time to take stock and evaluate, or to gather, collect, harvest or cash in on something.

The Moon from The Gilded Tarot, illustration by Ciro Marchetti. Wolves bark during a Hunter’s moon, and crayfish move and spawn on the changing tides. The Moon card is also the card signifying contagion, disease and epidemics.

A Waning Moon is the optimum time for ending something, clearing out what’s no longer wanted or needed, including unhelpful or unhealthy habits. It may mean releasing something, or even getting rid of something (or someone) 

Some may perform banishing rituals, symbolically clearing out what’s no longer wanted or needed.

What is the Full Flower Moon?

These full Moon names were used during Native American and Colonial times to help track the seasons—and often came from the Algonquin tribes who lived in the same areas as the Colonists. Other such names are the Mother’s Moon, Milk Moon, and Corn Planting Moon.

The May full Moon means spring in high season with rising temperatures, a declining risk of late frosts, and plants and trees in first bloom. 

7 May: The Full Moon in Scorpio

Death card.jpg
Public Domain The Death card from the Rider-Waite Tarot

Scorpio is the sign of death, sex and regeneration and is represented in the Tarot by The Death card. Don’t let this worry you. It’s not saying that you or anyone close to you is going to die this month. But the Tarot covers all aspects of human experience. Death is part of life. Without death, there would be no space for new life. This is potentially a very highly charged sexy, and even baby-making moon.

Scorpio is known as a powerfully psychic sign. A Full Moon in Scorpio can be intense and its card in the Tarot is The Death card. This rarely refers to an actual person’s death, though it may do on occasion, in which case it is generally a peaceful death in old age. But far more often it refers to the end of a chapter in your life.  This may be a job, a business, a location, a relationship, an object or a habit.  It may be time to review a few things, close accounts, complete unfinished tasks, and gather your harvest. It is time to move on. This is not about rejecting others or hurting them in any way. It is simply that it is time to move forward, not allowing nostalgia or outworn loyalties to tie you down, holding yourself back from where you really need to go.

Scorpio is deep, secretive, intense, passionate…even obsessive. A little of what you fancy does you good. But this full moon could be a bit full on for comfort.

Sharp words may be said. Brooding silences may – brood. Conversely, and less quietly, crockery may sprout wings and go flying.

Scorpio has a sting. Secrets may be revealed at this time, or you may make unwelcome discoveries. Should you find yourself dealing with a situation of this kind, the advice for this full moon and the three days surrounding it either side is, do not act in haste. Take plenty of time to think about things. Don’t ignore your own needs and wishes. Listen to them, but be careful how you act on them. Take it easy around this full moon.

22 May: The New Moon in Gemini

Public Domain The Lovers from the Rider-Waite Tarot

The Lovers card is the Tarot card associated with air sign Gemini. This is a very different mood, and now that we have left the zodiac sign of Taurus and entered the zodiac sign of Gemini, we have an astrological double whammy; both the sun and moon are in Gemini.

This is a very different mood; lighter, sparkling, volatile, communicative and social.  Gemini is intellectually agile, curious and sociable like its planetary ruler, Mercury.  That Full Moon is Scorpio has been followed by a Gemini butterfly. Enjoy this lighter mood, but not every acquaintance is actually a friend and social media can become a snake pit if one is not careful how one treads. Gemini is friendly, everyone’s friend, but it keeps its distance.

The Lovers card is about love and romance of course, but above all, it’s about making choices. The problem is that here, the choices probably aren’t equal or straightforward. Will it be the apple or the orange? Or neither or both?

Or you may find yourself at a crossroads. This Tarot card advises you to look beneath the surface and be completely honest with yourself. Is this person or situation really right for you?  Which do you go with, your heart or your head? Is there something niggling at you? Some doubt? Something you don’t really want to believe or you can’t quite nail what it is, or you’ve got your suspicions but you’d rather tell yourself you’re imagining it.

Anything like that, you’ll do better to stay quiet, to watch, to wait, and to go with your head.

Click here to read about what’s coming up in the night sky this May. With all five of the ‘bright’ planets on parade, and with Venus in splendour, and in its closest conjunction with Mercury -there’s a lot to look out for.

Until next time 🙂

Author: Katie-Ellen

Intuitive Tarot reader, consultant and writer.

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