When I think about the power of the moon, I consider it’s effects on women and the earth. Over time, ancient people learned that it’s cycles affect plant growth. That’s why the authors of The Farmer’s Almanac suggest specific times to plant specific plants to yield plentiful harvests. In many cultures, women are viewed as the creators of agriculture and I believe it’s related to our close connection with the moon. Ocean tides are another moon related phenomenon. The moon travels around the earth and they both travel around the sun. As a result, their combined gravitational forces cause the rise and fall of the oceans. And with all of this power, there’s even more.
For many generations, the moon has been viewed as a feminine celestial body. With this knowledge in mind, I’d like to introduce you to the triple goddess. Each manifestation of The Goddess is represented through the triple goddess AND the moon’s cycles. As a person of African descent, born in America, I see the triple goddess and moon cycles through the Yoruba tradition of the goddesses Yemaya, Oshun, and Oya.
- Yemaya is the goddess of the ocean. In the triple goddess “thealogy” (yes, the “a” is intentional), she represents the maiden – beginnings, birth, and new growth. As it relates to the moon, she’s the new moon and waxing crescent.
- Oshun is the goddess of love and rivers. She represents the mother aspect of the triple goddess. She’s voluptuous and sensual and has a strong desire to protect all of her creations. She is the full moon.
- Oya is the goddess of transformation, representing the crone nature of the triple goddess. She is the great goddess of wind and storms and guardian between the worlds. Many fear her as she represents the transition to death. She is the waxing crescent that leads to the dark moon. Her story is one of rebirth as we only transition to the next world. We never die.
Now that we see the moon through the eyes of the triple goddess, let’s talk about how this oval that lights the night connects to each and every woman on this planet. Before the moon was considered to be a pagan icon, women understood the connection it had to their moon time. This beautiful celestial body takes 28-29 days to travel around the earth and it’s not happenstance that most women experience their moon time every 28 days. This cycle represents the fullness of the triple goddess; the birth and life of the maiden (new moon and waxing crescent), the life of the mother (full moon), and the life, death, and transformation of the crone (waning crescent and dark moon). One thing I’ve found interesting is the moon’s shape in relation to women. It’s not round, it’s oval. In fact it’s shaped like an egg that can only be produced by the females of most species. See the connection?
Before the introduction of artificial light, our menstrual cycle followed this pattern. The moon’s magnetic pull on our bodies was the key. Just like the ocean and rivers, we are composed primarily of water so the moon has a powerful effect on us as well. When the moon was full, we ovulated. If we didn’t become pregnant during this time, we bled with the dark moon. Since this knowledge has been lost, many women are disconnected from nature and how their bodies actually work. For this reason, our circadian rhythms are all over the place. These precious rhythms regulate all of our body’s functions, including our menstrual cycle. The circadian rhythms of our families and house mates effect the timing of our circadian rhythms, thus the timing of our menstrual cycles, as well. Some might say this is individual to each woman and I’ll challenge you by saying, put a bunch of women in the same house and watch them sync up.
Ancient men were in awe with the blood of a woman’s moon cycle as she was able to bleed without injury and could “heal” in just a few days without lingering effects. They believed this ability demonstrated great intuition and power. During their moontime, women would separate from their tribes to commune with the goddess. In some communities, they had a red tent. In others, they had a moon hut. Here women would sing, dance, drum, make crafts, climb nearby trees and bask in the glory of the sun or the moon, tend to one another’s needs, work magic rituals, teach new coming women who were new to the moon cycle experience, and bring back messages from The Goddess to their fellow tribe members. This is a tradition we’ve lost over time as we rarely take time to relax to get in touch with the maiden, mother, and crone within each of us.
The Goddess made us with energy that connects to the universe to keep us in a state of balance. For this reason, our connection with the moon is undeniable. We are one and following her pattern can help us heal ourselves and our land. If we reduced our exposure to artificial light in the evenings and stopped consuming endocrine system disruptors through our food and body care products, our circadian rhythms would adjust accordingly and our menstrual cycles would align with that of the moon. If we took back our mean time and connected with The Goddess within, I can only imagine how much more powerful we’d be. Our overall health and well-being would drastically change for the better and we would be able to operate to our fullest potential. So go forth and be one with the moon. Embrace the maiden! Embrace the mother! Embrace the crone! Go ahead! Unleash your inner Yemaya, Oshun, and Oya. I promise your life will be forever changed.
Love and light.