This post has comes about because over this last week I have been quizzed on the topic of ‘moon-bathing’.
First off, moon-bathing is exactly how it sounds, just like sun-bathing but under the light of the moon. But unlike sun-bathing it is much, much safer. There are many reasons I might suggest moon-bathing during a tarot reading. These reasons don’t deviate far from when I was working as a psychologist and I would suggest that my clients moon-bathe. I will talk about some of the science first and then the magick. It should be noted that my path as a witch aims to combine science and magick.
Science surrounding the impact of the moon on human behavior is minimal. This is for a number of reasons, but two of the obstructing variables are human medication and artificial light. In order to get funding for research into the effects of the moon on human behavior, funders want a clear outline as to how you will control for these variables. However, it is nearly impossible to control for these variables. I know because I have applied for funding in this exact area. What science can confirm is that the moon has an impact on human sleep patterns, female menstrual cycles, and on nearly every species of animal and plants.
If we move to talk about psychoanalysis, Jung believed that the moon was an archetype for the feminine, fertility, and the unconscious, among other things. This is an area I studied widely in.
Animists believe that all natural objects have an inherit and individual soul, and that these souls are linked overall. So, everything from the sun, moon, weather, mountains, rocks, to animals, to humans to artworks and even words have a unique energy and spirit that we can connect with.
Witches are a diverse group of people but a common theme among us is a connection to the natural world, in particular the moon. While all aspects of nature are important, the moon has always held a central role in most witches’ paths. While believing that the moon has it’s own magick and spirit, either in the form of an animist belief structure, or due to a belief in a moon deity, exposure to moonlight has always been considered good medicine. Each phase of the moon and each moon sign is also believed to have it’s own magick and is often used in ritual.
From my experience as a psychologist and a witch/tarot reader, moon-bathing has many beneficial effects. Firstly, a lot of people find it easier to meditate at night by the light of the moon. The reasons they cite is fewer distractions, quietness, a sense of magick, the stars and the moon being good points of focus, the moonlight itself being soothing, and an overall sense of the otherworldly. People often find sitting with the moon is a good way to to access their unconscious and enter a meditative state. It can also be a good way to confront any fears you might have of the dark, the unconscious, or the shadow-self and thus reduce some level of anxiety over all.
So when clients come to me feeling overwhelmed with any number of emotions, plagued by insomnia, or with a desire to work with the shadow-self, or increase psychic connection or even connection to nature in general, I will suggest moon-bathing. Because I work inside an animist belief structure, I also believe moonlight is an excellent way to cleanse and charge your tarot deck.