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How to understand your moon sign and its lunar phase

Astrologer Sarah Bartlett explains how you can connect with the magic and mystique of the moon’s power

There are many differences between the Sun and the Moon in astrology. The Sun represents what you are in the process of becoming and the spirit of self within you. It is your future potential (even if you don’t know it), and it could be articulated as ‘I am’, ‘I want’, or ‘I want to be’. For instance, this inner spirit might say, ‘I want to shine in this field of work,’ or, ‘Here, in this love relationship, is how I want to be individual or identified.’ In your birth chart or horoscope, it is the Sun that describes your sense of being ‘centred’, whether that’s self- centred (too much ego) or self- conscious (too little ego).

While the Sun sign describes your solar destiny, and the way you discover your ‘solar light within’, it doesn’t exactly happen overnight. Ironically, we often live most of our lives through our lunar selves, which can be clouded by psychological hang-ups.

The good news, however, is that the Moon is your ‘natural self’: it comes easy, you own these qualities and don’t have to look for them through external means, as with Sun sign expression. You may have to wait a long time before you discover your vocational destiny, but the Moon is your instinctive, reactionary and bodily self; it feels natural, even if it’s painful. The Moon in our natal chart reveals how comfortable we feel in the external world, and how we react to events, experiences and people.

Many of us know which sun sign we are, but trying to find out your Moon sign can be a little trickier. Unless you are really into astrology, working out the Moon’s position at the time of your birth is best left to a computer or an easy- to- understand internet site, where you can enter your birth details and get the answer.

Once you know in which sign the Moon was located when you were born, you can read the following information to help you understand not only more about yourself, but also how to use that information to enhance and empower you.


Your Moon Sign and its Lunar Phase

As well as knowing your Moon sign, it is also important to discover under which phase of the Moon you were born.

This is because the lunar phase, whether Full, Waxing, Waning or New, describes the way you react to life and other people on a daily basis. For example, you may be born with the Moon in Capricorn, but if you were born during a Full Moon phase (which exaggerates feelings), you will probably be more emotional than you’d like to be around a Full Moon, even though your Moon in Capricorn thrives in a calm, controlled environment.

If you were born during the Full Moon:

Generally, you’re very open and have an emotionally receptive attitude. You soak up ideas and other people’s feelings. During a Full Moon, you usually feel more vulnerable and more emotional, and may overreact to situations.

If you were born during a Waning Moon phase:

You are able to analyse and reflect carefully before committing yourself and have great stamina and inner emotional strength. With others, you’re a little cautious about revealing too much about yourself, and find it hard to be really honest about your needs.

If you were born during the Dark of the New Moon phase:

You may be psychic, but you’re a bit of a loner and prefer small groups of people to grand social events. You’re good at keeping secrets, and you don’t say much about your needs. However, you do feel things deeply and are highly intuitive.

If you were born during a Waxing Moon phase:

Creative and inspiring, you’re always ready to take a leap in the dark or set off on a new adventure, complete tasks and finalise decisions. You need life to be fun, carefree and undemanding.


Working Out Your Moon Phase

To be sure about the phase of the Moon you were born under you can try using this calculation:

First, you need to look at an image of your birth chart and check what degree your Sun is in its sign. This is usually readily apparent when you look at your birth chart on the internet: the degree is usually listed beside the symbol for the Sun.

When you look at your birth chart, please note that the signs of the zodiac revolve anticlockwise. So, starting from the Sun’s placement, always calculate the Moon’s phase working in an anticlockwise direction.

Let’s take an example. Say you have the Sun at 20 degrees Taurus.

Is it a Dark of the New Moon phase?

If your Moon is within 5 degrees of either side of the Sun (so between 15 and 25 degrees Taurus), you were born during the Dark of the New Moon phase.

Is it a Full Moon phase?

The culmination of the Full Moon falls exactly opposite the Sun, but again within a range of 5 degrees either way. So, in our example with the Sun at 20 degrees Taurus, the Full Moon would be exactly opposite, at 20 degrees Scorpio.

If you look at a horoscope, you will see that exactly opposite the sun in Taurus is the sign of Scorpio. If you were to draw a line exactly 180 degrees across the circle from the Sun, you’ll get to 20 degrees Scorpio.

Counting from the Taurus Sun, and working anticlockwise, if your Moon falls within 5 degrees on either side of the Full Moon degree (in this case, between 15 and 25 degrees Scorpio), you are a Full Moon phase person.

Is it a Waxing Moon phase?

If, working anticlockwise, your natal Moon falls 5 degrees or more after your Sun and 5 degrees before the Full Moon, you were born in a Waxing Moon phase.

In our example, if the natal Moon falls somewhere between the range of 25 degrees Taurus and 15 degrees Scorpio, let’s say at 8 degrees Libra, you are a Waxing Moon phase person.

Is it a Waning Moon phase?

If, working anticlockwise, your natal Moon falls 5 degrees or more after the Full Moon, and 5 degrees before your Sun, then you were born in a Waning Moon phase.

In our example, if the natal Moon falls somewhere between the range of 25 degrees Scorpio and 15 degrees Taurus, let’s say at 10 degrees Aquarius, you are a Waning Moon phase person.