Saturday, 25 September 2010

Super Harvest Moon

The moon is seen as a female symbol, and was worshipped in ancient times as a powerful force. It is believed to be linked to the unconscious and our feminine side. The Sacredness of the moon has been connected with the basic cyclic rhythms of life. The changing phases of the moon were linked to the death and rebirth seen in crops and the seasons, and also to the female monthly cycle that controls human fertility. The moon calendar is still important and many festivals exist around the lunar phases.
 Two days ago on Sept. 23, 2010: For the first time in almost 20 years, northern autumn began on the night of a full Moon.

When the night of the harvest moon coincides with the night of the equinox, it is called a 'Super Harvest Moon' and this year it created the first Super Harvest Moon since 1991
The action began at sunset GMT, the last day of northern summer. As the sun sank in the west, bringing the season to a close, the full Harvest Moon rose in the east, heralding the start of autumn. The two sources of light will mix together to create a kind of 360-degree, summer-autumn twilight glow that is only seen on rare occasions.

As the golden orb rose it appeared much larger, this is the Moon illusion at work. For reasons not fully understood by astronomers or psychologists, a low-hanging Moon appears much wider than it really is.  
The Harvest Moon gets its name from agriculture. In the days before electric lights, farmers depended on bright moonlight to extend the workday beyond sunset. It was the only way they could gather their ripening crops in time for market. The full Moon closest to the autumnal equinox became "the Harvest Moon," and it was always a welcome sight.

The Harvest Moon is also known as the Wine Moon, the Singing Moon and the Elk Call Moon. In American myth and folklore the full moon of each month is given a name. There are many variations, but the following list gives the most widely known names:

January – Wolf moon, Hunger moon, Old moon
February – Snow moon, Ice moon
March – Worm moon, Sap moon, Sugaring moon, Crow moon, Storm moon
April – Pink moon, Egg moon, Grass moon, Rain moon, Growing moon, Wind Moon
May – Flower moon, Planting moon, Milk moon, Hare moon
June – Strawberry moon, Rose moon, Honey moon, Mead moon
July – Buck moon, Thunder moon, Deer moon, Hay moon
August – Sturgeon moon, Corn moon, Fruit moon, Barley moon
September – Harvest moon, Gypsy Moon
October – Hunter's moon
November – Beaver moon, Frosty moon, Snow moon
December – Cold moon, Long Night moon, Winter moon

The next 'Super Harvest Moon' will happen again in the year 2029.

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