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The Magic of Moonlight ~ Dark Moon & New Moon

Updated: May 21, 2022

I was taught to celebrate the New Moon as soon as there is a small sliver in the sky. Before then, it's called a Dark Moon; it's a time to reflect, incubate, release, clear, and connect with the darker shadows that live within us. In an era of quick gratification and consumerism, I think this dark moon energy of being rather than doing, is a critical part of our healing.

Many of us have forgotten how to be. We spend our days looking through the frame of a lens: a computer screen, a phone camera, a social media group, or some other framed portal that has become increasingly popular since the pandemic. our newest generations spend more of their time looking through the looking glass of technology than actually being present.

Our society is transforming right before our eyes, and these dark moon times are perfect nights to sit in our visionary selves, opening up to what the future may hold.

This weekend's New Moon in Leo invited a fresh surge of energy for our tasks this upcoming month. I spent much of Sunday dropping in more deeply to my life, still in the dark moon vibe. I did mundane things like laundry. I played really great Goddess music, and created beauty by tidying up my office. Every action felt sacred because it was done with intention; it was a part of my honoring the cycles of my daily life.


Soon, I'll slip into a New Moon ritual. Moon rituals often feel most dramatic to me when I can see the sliver in the sky. I connect with the vision of the moon, entraining to how She will swell and grow through the month. I feel there is a vibrational download, a transmission that occurs when we center our presence and focus on the energy of the moon, no matter where it is in the sky. We receive the subtle energies we need in order to open to new life teaching, unwind old life lessons, and move forward. New moons are great for setting fresh tasks and beginning epic journeys, but even when we do nothing, we receive the transmission of the moon's delicate but tenacious energy. When my connection is there, the air feels electric, and my thoughts are flooded with creative ideas and solutions.

As a pre-teen I did my first moon rituals in the backyard at night as the house slept. I didn't know how much the simple act of being with the moon would heal me. Now I see those hundreds of rituals--even the artless ones that had no plan--as checkpoints. Like the anchor points of each stitch in a beautiful garment, my moon rituals kept me attuned to my emotions through even the most tumultuous of times.

We don't have to show up happy for the moon. We don't have to have it all together. Being with the moon doesn't require anything. It's okay if you don't have witchy black cloak. It's okay if you don't have a ritual. You don't have to have words, or even intentions. The most powerful part of the ritual is being. Just be.

Whether dark, new, or full, the more you can come to the moon in total surrender with your heart open to being rather than doing, the more the moon offers its reflective gift of insight. We call this magic, but I don't actually see it as magic; I see it as common sense. Of course you will be filled with amazing reflective feelings and insights if you empty your mind on a dark moody night with only a sliver of light to see by. Your ego is invited to let go, and once it does, your higher wisdom can finally come alive in the night.


I used to love reading poetry by moonlight. In high school I would go out to my garden in the dark, and read Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Shelley, and Dickinson out loud, by the moon. The rhythmic lull of poetry puts us in a trance and opens us to thoughts we might otherwise lock away. So many of those nights were the most healing experiences of my youth. Alone with my thoughts, the moon, and poetry, I discovered new pathways of thought. I played with new ideas for how my life could be. Being with myself and the moon, I became more.

Everyone is allowed to know this moon in this way. Generations ago, we all used to honor the moonlight. It seems that loving the moon has become something of a lost art. Don't let it slip away. Make time to be. Make time to rest in soft moonlight and let the threads of your life naturally untangle in Her reflection. Let the energy of the moon confer its blessing upon you.


DAILEY LITTLE is a healing practitioner, transformational life coach, ordained Priestess, and teacher who founded Healing Heart Reiki to help others navigate life with joy. She offers private sessions, and teaches classes in healing and mindset from a magical peaceful corner of the world in Northern California. For more info see:

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Aug 11, 2021

Love love love your sharing of your preteen moon experiences. I love poetry and reading poems and stories out loud. I resonate deeply with the tradition of honoring dark moon time before moving into new moon time, and seeing that first sliver of the new moon in the night sky. Dark moon is perfect for not having a ritual in mind, in my experience, and rather deep listening and sensing for what the night wants to tell you.

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