The length of a moon cycle is around 29.5 days, while the average length of a calendar month is 30.5 days. We usually have just one full moon per month, but every two or three years we have 13 moons in a year. This 13th moon is usually a Blue Moon, either the second full moon in a calendar month or the third full moon in a three-month season with four full moons. So what is the spiritual meaning of a blue moon?
The Blue Moon: A Time of Completion
Full moons are all about completion and harvest. They invite us to consider what we’ve been building over the last moon cycle and consider what we want to keep and what we want to let go of. The pairing of two full moons in one calendar month invites us to focus more intently on the process of letting go.
Generally, Blue Moons occur at the end of a month, when there was already another full moon at the very beginning. An invitation here is to focus this entire month on releasing, letting go, and allowing yourself to shift into the next phase of your life.
Prioritize whatever it is you need in order to let go: Is it therapy? Something you’ve been putting off for a while or that you need to quit? Taking some time off to grieve, honor, plan, or communicate? Making a change in your life? This would be the month to step through the portal between these two full moons into the next phase of your life.
The Blue Moon and the Sacred Number 13
A Blue Moon also represents the 13th moon within a calendar year. The number 13 is associated with the Goddess and with feminine energy. This is partly because a menstrual cycle aligns more closely with a moon cycle than with a calendar month, so feminine mysteries have always been held in association with the moon.
We’ve come to think of the number 13 as unlucky, but this may be in part because the patriarchal powers-that-be—those who wanted to shift the balance of power from the matriarchs and queens of ancient times over to the kings and popes of a colonizing Christianity—wanted us to think this way.
In Christian mythology, Judas was the 13th disciple—the one who betrayed Jesus and led to his death. It is said that Jesus died on Friday the 13th, a day that was previously meant to celebrate the Goddess. Scholars now theorize that these associations were created in order to draw people away from the Goddess-worshiping cults that were in favor before Christian colonialism and patriarchy took their hold.
On a Blue Moon, then, we can shift our focus to the divine feminine realm. People of any gender can do this; it simply means connecting to the feminine, Goddess-oriented aspect of ourselves. This may have different associations for everyone, but in general, Goddess energy is powerful, playful, and sometimes dark, often sitting in those places in our psyche that we don’t always show to the world. It’s a time to sit with emotions, with the wisdom of the body and with all the energies we can’t see. The feminine realm can be a place to feel, rest, and heal.
What to Do During the Blue Moon
The Blue Moon is a wonderful time to be doing our spiritual practices, even if it’s as simple as lighting a candle, meditating, or spending some time in prayer. We can also look to the feminine goddess archetypes, such as the loving Mother Mary in Christianity, the independent huntress Artemis in Greek mythology, and the fierce destroyer Kali from the Hindu tradition. This would be a wonderful time to pull a tarot card or find a goddess oracle deck and learn about feminine archetypes in that way. Goddess energy (as well as masculine God energy) is within each of us. The Blue Moon gives us an opportunity to dip deep within our own spirits and explore.
Tend your internal garden with moon rituals.