Full moon
Vedic Astrology

Full Moon: Empty or Full?

by Saraswati J. Miller March 19, 2014 07:43 PM EST
Full Moon: Empty or Full?

A full Moon is known to be a powerful time of the month that brings energy, creativity, and an expansive feeling. We think of the full Moon as the climax of the Moon's monthly movement, but is it an ending or a beginning?

Similar to exalted planets in that they are "full" and can't be "added to", a Full Moon (or Purnima) means that it is full to capacity, there's no more room for it to expand and grow; it is complete. In this way, we can interpret the full Moon as a "new Moon" in that it marks the beginning of a new cycle of emptying itself and refilling itself (mirroring our internal process).

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In the Vedic system of astrology, beginning a lunar month at the Purnima is called Suklanta. This differs from starting the lunar month count at the new Moon (Amavasya) which is the point when the Moon is empty and is waiting to be filled by the Sun.

These different methods of starting the lunar calendar remind me of the saying "is your glass half empty or half full?!" When do we start our "new Moon" calendar and begin our new lunar month? When we are full and satisfied or when we are empty and needing to be nourished?
 

These two approaches to the lunar calendar can offer a different perspective for our full Moon and new Moon experiences.

 
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