November’s Full Moon and Lunar Eclipse 2021

The Beaver | Reed | Frost | Snow | Fog Full Moon of November is the first Full Moon following Samhaim and for this reason it is sometimes considered in Pagan practice as the marker of the new year. For those particularly in tune with the thinning of the veil, the November Full Moon carries special importance. This year the Full Moon couples with a partial (97%) lunar eclipse that is the longest (around 3.5 hours) in the last 500-1000 years.

The culmination of this cycle is, for me, about wholness, as every Full Moon is. However, the Beaver Moon conjures something unique. I am asked to seek a feeling of wholeness in the experiences and emotions of death, grief, loss, and “darkness.” Those aspects of myself that may appear “broken” or even “lunatic” request license to guide me now. I sit down into sensations of discomfort and fear — fear of being judged, fear of surrendering to the unknown. I resist the urge to change anything about that. I allow myself to find strength in this space where my companions are those antagonists that I would usually try to change or heal.

And so, here we meet in a bit of a different situation than is usual for us at a Full Moon. Rather than setting an intention for new beginnings, healing, and change, we stare each other down and decide to not change a thing. We decide that this time there is no new beginning; there is only what has always been: our deepest, darkest adversary. The shadow self steps into the circle. We do not blush or ask it to leave or rage against it or turn our face away from it. We open up our arms and embrace her. That is all that we can do during this time of foreboding cosmic alignment: during a session in which the cosmos sings “this is the dark night of the soul.”

Sure, there is darkness here. There is struggle, opposition. And yet, in these things Kali Ma or Hecate can impart that this, too, is part of the cycle of life/death and all that exists in between. We notice, perhaps, that the dark goddesses are goddesses of creation and destruction because they traverse a path avoided by many. They sit down at a crossroads and though that space is dangerous, it allows them to see in all directions.

I am with you in this celebration of darkness because it, too, is a tool for ascension. I am with you in this turbulence of the soul. Together we look at what we usually try to avoid. We are scared but we are brave. In fact, bravery is not possible without fear.

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