How to Harness the Magical Power of Each Moon Phase

It's no secret that witches love the moon, and knowing how to harness the power of each moon phase can amplify your powers and make for some amazing spells. As a matter of fact, regardless of if you identify as a witch or not, most humans feel a connection to Earth's natural satellite. Witches tend to think of the moon as the mother energy and the sun as the father energy, and I remember looking up at the sky when I was in middle school and feeling comfort in the moon and the knowledge that I could see it the moon from so far away.

The comfort in that particular moment that I derived from mother moon may have had something to do that I had also recently gotten my period. Neither magick nor witch abilities depend on gender or sex, but the menstrual cycle is often compared to the cycles the moon goes through. Considering the moon controls the tides and up to 60 percent of the adult human body is water (the brain and heart are 73 percent), it would make sense to wonder how the stages of the moon affect us. So let's get straight to the point: How can I use the phases of the moon to harness magick and get what I want?

To start, as my mentor, friend, and astrologer Annabel Gat always taught me, the most powerful ingredient in any magick is you. If you want to do a spell to cut cords with someone (handy when getting over a breakup) but you're texting the person while you write out the spell, it doesn't matter that the moon is waning — you still need to put down the phone. Likewise, if you're feeling ultra-aware of your power and want to take your career to the next level, you may feel compelled to do a spell for money and success, so use that energy and do it. It doesn't matter where the moon is. The moon's phase can be a handy guide, but as always, you're the one in charge, witch. But to equip you with magickal lunar knowledge, read on to learn how to harness the energy of each moon phase. You can learn what phase the moon is with a simple Google search or by checking any lunar website.

The new moon is a fresh start. When the moon is in this phase, you can barely see it, and the sky can appear black. Sometimes magick can be quite literal, and with the moon out of sight, this can be an ideal time to do shadow work or acknowledge our dark sides, or shadow selves, that we typically like to keep hidden.

For instance, perhaps you have a manipulative side you tend to insist doesn't exist when called out. Are there healthy ways you could use these skills, such as to get ahead in your career without hurting others in the process? Or you could use your ability to read others to encourage your partner to communicate together rather than to control them? New moons are great for exploring our shadow sides and finding ways to work positively with them.

Additionally, as new moons are new beginnings, the new moon is a wonderful time to set goals and intentions for the forthcoming cycle. What do you want the next month to look like? Is there a toxic lover you're finally ready to cut out of your life to make room for the person of your dreams? The new moon is a great time to encourage beginnings, especially in love. And you know what beginnings require: letting go of the past. If you want to clear bad energy in your love life to attract an ideal mate, the new moon has your back.

New moon spell idea:

Try bath magick. Did you know you already have a giant cauldron in your bathroom? Water and salt are inherently cleansing, so run a bath, and fill it with bath salts, or simple sea salt. If you want something extra witchy, try a Witch Baby New Moon Bath Bomb. Set the mood by lighting candles, take a relaxing bath, and imagine the past hurt and pains soaking off of you, and going down the drain when you eventually get out. Spells can be intricate and detailed, but they don't have to be. They can be as natural as enjoying a cleansing bath on a new moon.

The waxing moon phase is when the moon is visually getting bigger and brighter, shifting from a new moon to a full moon. (To remember the difference between waxing and waning, I think of the expression "wax on.") During the waxing moon, the moon is growing, becoming brighter, and creating an ideal phase for sympathetic magick around growth. Sympathetic magick means magick that works through symbolic resemblance. The moon is getting brighter, so let's use that energy to make your career, self-esteem, and love life brighter, too.

Waxing moon spell idea:

Write out a letter of intention stating what you want from your career, be it a raise or a change in title, or even a total shift in fields. Regardless of what you think of magick, evidence shows that journaling and writing things out can help us emotionally process and therefore go after and get what we want. If the spell is about money, buy a green candle, although whenever doing candle magick, you can always use a white one as a stand-in.

Candle magick is an entire branch of magick, and to learn more, I suggest the book The Enchanted Candle by Lady Rhea. To keep it simple, carve your name onto the candle using a toothpick or other safe pointy object, along with symbols such as dollar signs that represent your desires. Read your letter of intention out loud and meditate, visualizing getting exactly what you want. You deserve it. Then light the candle, and when the candle has finished burning (make sure to put it out if you leave the house) your desires have been transmitted to the universe.

The full moon is no joke. Some of the wildest nights of my life went down on full moons, what about you? Emotions run high on full moons, and everything is extra intense. You can use this intensity and apply it to basically any spell you like, with the knowledge you'll have a bright ball of shining power to aid you. Many people charge their crystals during full moons by placing them somewhere they'll be exposed to the light. Another trick is to make full moon water, by placing a goblet of water under the light of the full moon on top of a letter of intention. Let the full moon charge the water, and then chug it up, witch.

Any magick can be done under a full moon with extra potency, but it's also a time in which psychic abilities are heightened. Trust your instincts under a full moon, even if emotions are running high. One of the simplest and best uses of full moon energy is to meditate in its light for clarity on a situation.

Full moon spell idea:

Sex magick means using the power of an orgasm to manifest your desires. Open a window so the light of the full moon shines through, and masturbate. When you come, imagine your intention, be it the partner of your dreams, a raise, or self-love. An orgasm powered by the full moon? Yeah, that spell's going to work.

The waning moon is the time period in which the moon is getting darker again, moving from a full moon back to new. Remembering sympathetic magick, the waning moon is great for banishing work, or cutting cords with a past lover. However, you don't always need to banish a person from your life entirely — some of the most powerful banishing work you can do is spells to rid yourself of feelings for someone you know is bad for you, insecurity or self-doubt. I've always found that empowering myself works better (and some would argue more ethical) than trying to change the will of another. But banish that fuck boy. Banish those thoughts that say you deserve to date fuck boys. Banish unfair treatment at work, banish your imposter syndrome. Remove unwanted negativities that are keeping you from living the life you deserve.

Waning moon spell idea:

Write a list of all your fears and insecurities. Many witches would tell you to get rid of it at a crossroads, but I live in New York City and don't want to get hit by a car, so I use other methods. You could also burn it, but please be careful and don't hurt yourself. We want to get rid of those nasty thoughts, not rid you of your apartment via fire. And the moon doesn't want that for you either, she wants you to know how loved and powerful you are, so always practice fire safety.

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