Dark Moon & Lunar Samhain 2020


We are in the dark moon phase of the lunation this week friends, and my message to us all~ value this, this natural lean inward~right now. Aligning with the Wheel of the Year always helps us recalibrate, always helps us heal.

Dark, or balsamic phase, of the moon are those couple few days each month when she disappears all together from the sky, covered entirely by the shadow of Mama Earth. Each month the moon cycles through 8 phases to make one complete lunation. A lunation starts with the waxing, or light return of new moon, is followed by the crescent, 1st quarter, gibbous, then full; and begins waning or decreasing in light through the disseminating, last quarter, and finally, balsamic phases. She waxes from right to left and wanes from left to right. For more on these phases, read Demetra George’s Mysteries of the Dark Moon.

All of nature, including humans and our relationships and social systems, are cyclical or patterned. Balsamic moon is the time of the month of retreat. It is our monthly rest period, when we move inward to review the cycle that is coming to completion. Balsamic moon is a time when we intuitively trust our knowing based on the stored wisdom of our cyclic experience, instead of just what we can see. This is that week, of sensing in the dark.

Now, dig this~this utterly wow’ing, esoteric (secret) knowledge of Mama Moon’s ancient mystery dance. Known as a menstrual or Women’s Mystery, each of the Moons 8 phases is replicated in one of the 8 total seasonal passings of the Wheel of the Year. These are the 4 quarter holidays of equinoxes or solstices that divide the year seasonally according to the sun’s movement, and the 4 cross quarter holidays that divide each season midway.

Spirit of the New Moon, Arthur Loureiro, 1888

So, this week’s balsamic moon retreat ought to feel like the relief you feel at the pause after a giant in-breath, for it’s the dark moon that readies us now for the metaphoric dark moon phase of the year: with Friday’s new moon, Samhain season is here!

That’s right, another way to deepen your understanding of the 8 stations on the Wheel of the Year is to study the phases of the moon each month, for those phases also show up once a year at a seasonal crossing, too.

Samhain, the metaphoric dark moon season, is a cross-quarter sabbat. It moves us Northwest on the Wheel as the midway point between the Autumnal Equinox (Mabon) and Winter Soltice (Yule). Samhain is the traditional root of Halloween, or Ancestor time, when the Veil between this and the Other or Spirit worlds is said to be thinnest. It is traditionally celebrated beginning at sundown the night before Halloween. Samhain, or balsamic phase, is when we honor the death or underworld, for how it will change form to feed new life.

Cross quarter, or mid season sabbats, have traditional dates marked by the solar calendar and esoteric lunar dates, too. The lunar dates change every year. Lunar Samhain is a new moon (often called dark) holiday, celebrated when the moon is dark to new when in the sun sign of Scorpio. This year that occurs just past midnight, eastern time on Sunday, November 15, 2020.

Over the next month or so I will post more esoteric applications of and meditations on Samhain season 2020, culminating with a free downloadable PDF of the Wheel of the Year from a lunar perspective on Lunar Samhain.

This is alchemy season friends, the time of Sensing in the Dark. Mama Earth is receptive right now, her energies pulling inward and the moon, too, aiding this retreat. Get outside and draw inward. Drop deep, nurture, and renew in the dark. Practice your knowing, work with your intuitive body’s wisdom.


Relax, trust your process, timing, and the results–yet unseen.

Most of all, be good to you…DON’T LET THE TAME YOU!

love Kel xo

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