Last week here in the Northern Hemisphere we were lucky to experience clear skies which resulted in the most spectacular “Harvest Moon”. It was so beautiful, that I wanted to write about it in this week’s Blog. As you can see from this photo, taken by a very good friend, it was truly spectacular.
I wake early and for three mornings last week, I woke to moonbeams gently shimmering across the ceiling and lighting up the room as the moon’s light flickered through the trees. There is something very magical and special about lying in bed looking at the moon and being bathed in its silvery light.
The Harvest Moon is the full moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox (around 23 Sept). It got its name because it appears at the time of year when farmers are completing their harvest and are reaping the rewards of all their hard work. The Harvest Moon is so bright that farmers can continue to harvest their crops well into the night. It lasts for three nights and according to NASA the Harvest Moon, and other super moons appear 14% larger and around 30% brighter than other moons throughout the year.
In the UK, schools and churches up and down the country are adorned with home grown produce as they prepare to celebrate the time of year and hold harvest festivals. This tradition started in 1843 and is the time of year when we give thanks to the land and all it has yielded. People from the communities bring in home grown produce and give it to the school or church in readiness for their harvest festival. Hamper type baskets/packs are made and then generously distributed to elderly people especially thos living on their own or those who are less fortunate.
I feel very fortunate to live in the countryside and when I am walking my dog at dawn, there is something very enchanting about seeing both the sun and moon in the sky at the same time. Not to mention, walking through the fields and orchards, inhaling the sweet smell of freshly cut hay and the fragrance of the ripe fermenting apples, all constant reminders of the land and this year’s harvest.
The Harvest Moon, for me, marks the beginning of autumn, a time of reflection. I also believe that because the year isn’t yet over any resolutions or goals made at the beginning of the year are still achievable. It is never too late.
The full moon can affect people and animals in different ways. One of my friends always knows when there is a full moon because her two cats start fighting with each other and the fur flies. Normally they are the best of friends.
I would be intrigued to know what a full moon means to you? Some people experience difficulty sleeping while others can feel on edge. Are you one of the people that are affected by it? Or are you the type of person that doesn’t notice anything going on in the sky above? Alternatively, would you prefer to be a migrating bird waiting for the harvest moon to appear before setting off for warmer climes?
Here’s the science bit: The moon is 250,000 miles away and takes 27 days, seven hours, 43 minutes and 11.6 seconds to travel round the earth. A full moon is when it is on the opposite side of the Earth from the Sun. This makes it fully visible to the naked eye. A new moon is when it is in the same direction as the Sun and so cannot be seen at night from Earth, an alternative moon is when it is partly visible.
Until next week, wishing all my readers a Happy Love and Light filled week.