This is the beginning of a series of posts for November 2022, that explore the Full Beaver Moon (including a total lunar eclipse), as well as the folk cunning, (fjolkunnig, Norse) or folk magic that surrounds many of the celebrations and festivals during this month. This will include things like Martinmas, Catterntide, Celtic Advent and more.
Into the category of folk cunning I also place folk religion, folk saints, heroes/heroines, folkways and customs, folk feast days, festivals and celebrations. I do that because I’m partial to the idea that religion is what you do, not what you believe. Meaning that our experiences and actions say much more about what we believe than any intellectually crafted doctrine or dogma. What we do is rooted in our everyday experience. Intention, action and effort create the magic of how we live our lives, and what we truly believe deep down.
We began November with the celebration of Samhain or All Hallow’s Eve, aka Hallowe’en. We traversed the dark and opened into the dawn of All Saint’s Day followed by All Soul’s Day. Each of those deserves its own article, and perhaps next year I’ll get to that.
It’s always best to simply begin where you are. Right now that’s at the Full Blood Beaver Moon in Taurus, a total lunar eclipse on November 8, 2022.
In the spirit of folk cunning, i.e. folk ways and customs, we’re going to look at traditional names of this full moon. We’ll look at how eclipses portend certain kinds of events, and how the color of a blood moon reaches back into our ancestral memory. We’ll learn from the spirit of animals how their power is medicine for the soul.
The Beaver Full Moon in Taurus + Total Lunar Eclipse November 2022
The full moon of Samhain arrives on November 8th and with it comes the bullish energies of Taurus, and a total lunar eclipse.
The full moon names for this month are rather varied. Beaver Moon, is gifted to us from Native American tribes, and is the most well known.
Other names include Frost Moon, Dark Moon, Tree Moon, Freezing Mist Moon, Mourning Moon, Darkest Depths Moon, White Moon, Moon in Reed, Moon in Wheat-straw, Moon of the Wild Hunt, and Howling Moon.
Full Moon Names
It’s easy to see how these names became attached to this month’s full moon. In many places November brings the first true killing frosts. Mist that has settled on the ground freezes, killing that which was green and growing just the day before. The dark of winter is setting in taking us into the darkest depths of the year. Death becomes a companion; All Soul’s Day opens the month and opens afresh our grief and mourning for lost loved ones.
Without the summer humidity in the air the moon appears whiter. Perhaps an early snow reflects back the milky white moon light. The leaves have fallen; the trees, marshes and fields are skeletal and bare. The full moon reveals herself through a pattern of branches, stark reeds and frost blasted wheat-straw. The early winter winds begin to howl. The Wild Hunt, a nightmarish cavalcade of the dead tears through the night sky terrorizing those below.
Eclipse energy is disruptive. It causes upheaval to what is normal, routine and usually reliable. Our light is dimmed. We are plunged into darkness at the wrong time.
In a lunar eclipse the earth comes between the sun and the moon, the shadow of the earth darkening our night light.
During a lunar eclipse the moon turns blood red. This happens because particles in the earth’s atmosphere scatter the shorter-wavelength blue light while the longer-wavelength orange and red light bathes the moon’s surface.
But, beyond the science I see a correspondence. A connection, a thread from the weave of unconscious understanding.
For tens of thousands of years our ancestors painted their small earthen goddess figures in red ocher. They also covered their dead in it.
Red ocher, the blood of the earth held power for them. They knew that blood accompanied birth, sustained life and was shed at death.
Blood red lunar eclipses portend birth and death, beginnings and endings. Though generally we focus on the threat of an ending, because of the darkness that eclipses bring.
At this lunar eclipse we on the Earth stand between the Sun (activity, creativity, intellect) and the Moon (intuition, receptivity, hidden knowledge). This earthy influence is amplified by the position of the moon in Taurus, a fixed earth sign, the most immobile quality of the most immobile element.
Like oak trees that refuse to let their leaves drop in autumn and hold onto them all winter (known as marcescense) you may find yourself unwilling to release and allow a necessary ending to manifest.
This is going to keep you from thriving.
Suspended somewhere between the archetypal energies of the Sun and Moon you may find yourself overcome by the immovable energies of Taurus and fixed earth, unable to let go.
What to do?
This is the Full Blood Beaver Moon in Taurus, and we can find our resources and the solution we need in the medicine that Beaver offers.
We’ve all heard the phrase “busy as a beaver”, so we known that beavers are industrious. They’re also amazing engineers. The longest beaver dam known is ½ mile long, it even shows up on Google Earth.
As amazing as this is it’s not the Beaver lesson we need right now. The Beaver Medicine we need has to do with manifesting an inner environment in which our soul can thrive.
We’ve had beavers living on our property on and off for twelve years and I’ve had the opportunity to observe them up close and here’s what I’ve learned.
Beavers will change their environment to create what they need to thrive. This is the Beaver Medicine we need for this Beaver Full Blood Moon Eclipse.
Beavers will seek out an open meadow that has a stream or creek running through or near it. A meadow is not the ideal habitat for a beaver. They need a body of still water. They will build a dam to stop the flow of water and flood the meadow turning it into a still water pond. Then they will be able to thrive.
During this Beaver Moon Eclipse we’re being asked to let go. Something needs to come to end, and eclipses usually bring emotional endings. The water that the beaver’s manipulate is a symbol for emotion.
Are we being asked to dam up our emotions? No. But we are being asked to calm the flow of turbulent, swirling, moving emotions. In other words let that sh*t go. Let your emotions come to rest forming a still, deep pond of emotions that brings calm and centering energy so you can thrive.
Taurus underscores this with its earthy steady, stillness and immovable quality. To weather this eclipse you’ll need to be rock solid, grounded and centered.
Build a dam to block unhelpful emotions. Allow your inner landscape to be flooded with calm emotions that become a reflecting pool. Beavers build their dams from trees. A walk outdoors among the trees may be just what you need to help you let go of those unhelpful emotions and create a still point in your soul.
If you’d like to do some inner journey work to seek out Beaver for more wisdom here’s a link to Beaver Moon Meditation Music https://youtu.be/t50Mk2Gte6s
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