From Her immortal head a radiance is shown from heaven and embraces earth; and great is the beauty that ariseth from Her shining light. The air, unlit before, glows with the light of Her golden crown, and Her rays beam clear…
~ Hymn to Selene (The Greek name for the Moon as Goddess), by Homer
Tonight (or in the wee hours of the morning tomorrow, depending on where you live), we celebrate the first Full Moon of 2012, the powerful time when the Sun is in Capricorn, and the Moon in her own sign of Cancer.
This is the Wolf Moon, also sometimes called the Old Moon, the Moon after Yule, the Snow Moon (but the February Full Moon is also sometimes given this name), the Quiet Moon, Cold Moon, Chaste Moon, the Disting Moon (the Full Moon before Imbolc), or the Moon of Little Winter.
The sign of Cancer is ruled by Mama Luna, therefore, now, while She is full and in Her home sign, this is Her most powerful time of the year. If you enjoy working with Moon Magick, this is the night to do it! The Sun in pragmatic Capricorn will support your intention and can give you especially practical results.
Astrologer Beka Finch Turner calls this The Great Mama’s Moon, and I would wholeheartedly agree.
She writes, “From the top of Capricorn mountain, our attention is now drawn down and west, to the depths of the ocean, or the Cancer Full Moon. Cancer is cardinal water, the initiator of emotion, and for me, nothing has embodied the mystery, healing, sensitivity, life giving qualities of this sign more than the ocean (except for my own mama, who happens to have a Cancer Moon and arrives the day this lunation begins. Such synchronicities assure me we are in the flow of nature).
“Cancer is the only sign ruled by the Moon; this is where the lunar Goddess feels most at home…Where the Moon falls in your chart generally indicates what you need for emotional fulfillment. It is your ‘feeling’ side, where you are most sensitive, fragile and also truly fulfilled. If you are ignoring the needs of your Moon, you will probably never feel completely whole…”
She continues, “This is the weekend of receiving the motherly love you need. 2012 has come in strong and most of us sense this is going to be a big year of change and growth. Capricorn has already gotten many making plans, preparations and their heads “in the game.” But the universe is about balance, and lest we burn out before February even gets here, Cancer asks us to take a break, check in to see if our physical plans harmonize with our emotional needs and lay our heads in Her lap.”
I also like what astrologer Rhea Wolf suggests we might consider, during this intense Moon. “With the Full Moon in Cancer on January 8th, the focus is on the inner landscape of emotions. Cancer is ruled by the Moon and beckons us to our hearts. Cancer’s symbol, the Crab, may be covered with a hard shell to protect its soft flesh within, but its purpose is to love and trust without fear. Cancer does need its barriers, but it also has to be willing to open its defenses. Only by connecting with our hearts and sharing these feelings with others, we can grow into fullness.
“During this Full Moon, the call is to be responsive to your feelings,” Rhea explains. “You may feel more sentimental and moody. Remember this when you or loved ones get overly nostalgic – or fly off the handle about some small irritation. Don’t ignore how you feel, but don’t let yourself get carried away by these feelings either.
“Giving yourself the time to look within will help you balance all the responsibilities of your life.”
She adds, “This is a good time to take a look at how your home life is functioning. Are you giving yourself time to rest and nourish your body and soul? Take a cue from the changing Moon and find ways to appreciate the mysterious cycles of your own inner world.”
This is a beautiful opportunity for healing frayed emotions and the post-holiday jangles. Be near a body of water tonight if you can, ideally the ocean. But if that’s not possible, at least take a moonlit salt water bath with calming scents and peaceful music. Let the water, which all comes ultimately from Mama Ocean, cradle you, soothe you, and wash away way your worries. Relax deeply, remembering that this holy water is the womb from which you, and all that lives, came.
Lastly, I love what Becka suggests when she writes, “Cancer is the lunation when I most like to make an offering back to the Mother. She is always giving and if we only take, soon She will have nothing left.
“If you feel comfortable ringing out your moon-blood in water and giving the water back to the ocean, earth, stream, etc, that is a very powerful gift. Or, if that is not your style, make a donation to your favorite local non-profit or activist group that takes care of our waters…Be gentle with yourself this weekend. Drink lots of fluids; be around water in whatever way you can. Pay attention to your emotions. Do activities that are nurturing. And take time to honor and receive the Great Mama in your life.”
May the Great Mama cradle you in Her boundless love this night.
May your rites most blessed be!