The 8 Phases of the moon and their meanings

The discovery of moon phases, in particular, has come to mean a great deal to many, so much so that it’s not unusual to see tattoos or wall decor to that effect! Once they become attuned to each phase, people are often able to alter their lives and situations. Women’s cycles, especially, often become attuned with the feminine pull of the moon. Here, we’re going to take a deep dive into moon phase meanings to consider how each phase has such impact, and how you can use that to your advantage. (also see The Secret Meaning of the Moon Phase on Your Birthday)

What the moon phases mean

When we talk about moon phases, we refer to the lunar cycle, which runs from new moon to new moon, eight phases of the moon, across 29.5 days. This is a cycle that we all follow, even if inadvertently because it’s traditionally the basis for our calendar months. Within this cycle, there are eight notable phases, which are –

The 8 Phases of the moon

Phase 1 - The new moon

What is it? - The new moon is not visible because the sun and moon are on the same side of the Earth. At this stage, we are faced by ‘the dark side of the moon.’

What does it mean? - The new moon is considered a time for fresh starts and rejuvenation, with women, especially, needing to regain their strength after the monthly cycle. This is the time for setting new intentions and putting the past behind you.

Phase 2 - The waxing moon

What is it? - The waxing moon (or waxing crescent) is a crescent illuminated on the right side as the sun begins to move from behind the moon.

What does it mean? - This is the rebuilding phase as the moon has rejuvenated and emerged again. This is the time to set intentions, hopes, and desires for the coming month, as well as being the ideal time to work on self-confidence and compassion.

Phase 3 - The first quarter

What is it? - At this stage, the whole right side of the moon is illuminated as the sun and moon are side by side.

What does it mean? - Thought to be the stage of obstacles, this is the ‘pause’ in the lunar cycle, a time when challenges, decisions, and actions come into play. Largely, this should be a time of reflection regarding your intentions and their obstacles.

Phase 4 - The waxing gibbous

What is it? - One step away from a full moon, the waxing gibbous leaves a tiny slither of the moon’s surface in darkness. This moon can be easily seen during the day.

What does it mean? - As we enter the full moon phase, this last stop is a time to adjust, refine, and edit intentions in the face of the challenges from the first quarter.

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Phase 5 - The full moon

What is it? - With the sun and moon on opposite sides of the earth, the face of the moon is entirely illuminated.

What does it mean? - Thought to be the most powerful lunar phase, many believe that this is the most charged spiritual phase. Emotions run high as the sun and moon operate in different zodiac signs, but new opportunities and power surges are often available to those ready to accommodate them.

Phase 6 - The waning gibbous moon

What is it? - As the sun begins to move once again behind the moon, a dark slither becomes apparent on the right side, reflecting the last quarter moon.

What does it mean? - A period of evaluation, this is the ideal time to reflect on the events of the past few days, and readjust intentions for the rest of the month.

Phase 7 - The third quarter

What is it? - The moon is illuminated on the left side, back to half-power.

What does it mean? - This is the time of letting go anything that is no longer serving us, making it the ideal opportunity to clean, cleanse, and purge.

Phase 8 - The waning moon

What is it? - With just a crescent illuminated once more, this is the moon’s last stop before it reenters the new moon period.

What does it mean? - Now is the time to surrender to whatever has happened that is out of our control. We should practice compassion and self-care at this time ahead of dusting ourselves off for the next cycle.

Find out what the moon phases mean to you

Once you know the basics of the moon phases, finding their true meaning is really down to you. Every lunar journey is incredibly personal and, with these fundamentals in mind, it’s in your power to move forward and consider how each phase affects you, and what you can do to enhance those positives moving forward. Create a beautiful moon print of That Very Night to capture that moments in your life.

The 8 Phases of the moon

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