Dwelling in the Dark: The Moon + Herbology
As the dark continues to lengthen in the Northern Hemisphere and some of us prepare to celebrate the new year, I find myself firmly ensorcelled by the deep of night and like a night-blooming flower I open up and turn my face towards the Moon's glow. I stand out in my garden under streetlight and close my eyes, floating my senses above the teeming senses, like a grey-winged moth, searching for the Moon above the purply dark of Los Angeles. I hunger, like so many wild ones, for the nectar of Moonbright.
What does the Moon matter to herbologists + plantfolk?
The moon is a celestial vessel pouring out the energies of the sun, stars, and planets in our everyday (and everynight) lives as She moves through the sky. Our magickal ability to access, shape, and bend energy is defined by how we relate to the moon. Integrating herbs that are aligned to the moon into our daily practice is an incredibly powerful way to harmonize the influence of the Moon on us, as well as more effectively accessing Her harmonizing energy.
Physically, in traditional astrological herbalism lunar herbs govern the blood, lymphatic system, and all fluids of the body, as well as the stomach and digestive system. As the Moon distributes celestial energy on earth, so does our blood distribute water, food, and oxygen throughout our bodies. The stomach is our second brain, where we possess our “gut instinct” and digest food and information that we receive, just as the Moon is the realm of intuitive knowing and revelation of mysteries.
Emotionally, the Moon heals underlying emotional disturbances and traumas that can lead to health imbalances. Moon energy helps us to become more receptive to changes in our life, harmonizing our hearts, minds, and bodies to ebb and flow with power and intention.
Magickally, connecting with lunar energies is an opportunity to cultivate our intuition, our visionary abilities, and become creative, healing dreamers.
At the end of the day (pun most definitely intended), the Moon helps us to access and express our desire. When I speak of desire, I speak of expressing inner truth, trusting your story, and living with the brilliance of authenticity. Working with lunar energy we can create remedies and practices of healing that call on the metamorphic integration powers of the Moon to call all parts of ourselves home again.
So now, clever friends and dreamy lunas, I leave you with the following lunar questions to consider as you brew a cup of tea and dwell deliciously in the dark. You will also find a new recipe for your late-night Moonlight musings! If you are intrigued and ready to start your journey as a lunar herbologist, join our exclusive learning community: The Lunar Apothecary.
- What is your relationship to the dark? Write it out, illustrate it, sing it, and/or dance it.
- The Moon and its affect on us, including the lunar tools we are born with as expressed through our Moon sign (discover your Moon sign here) is about authenticity and trusting our story or truth. Do you trust your story? If not, why not? What holds you back from expressing your truest desires?
- A creature of change, the Moon waxes and wanes, changing form each night. What is your relationship to change? Do you struggle to adapt or fear change? Alternatively, do you change so often that you lose sight of what you really desire? Consider finding an herbal ally or two, especially of the Lunar variety, to help you ebb and flow to the rhythm of your inner compass. Some Lunar herbs include Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis), Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris), and Aloe (Aloe barbadensis).
- Next time the Moon is full take time for Moonbathing. Get under her glow and drink deep her mystery, taking time to reflect on the importance of adaptability in our practice as herbologists, trusting our story, and regularly relinquishing that which no longer serves us.
And now for some tea!