The moon has always been the closest celestial body to our little planet. Moon phases wax and wane, leading many to ask what the difference is between full moon vs new moon. As such a critical body in astrological study, distinguishing full moon vs new moon is important.
Tides rise up and fall down at the behest of the moon’s position and phase. Knowing the difference in its phases and how it affects its planetary influence is necessary in astrology. Like the tides, the moon manipulates power and energy. Discerning full moon vs new moon made the difference to certain tribes in whether they could manipulate that power or not.
Celts and Native Americans have long held and honored the astrological importance of the moon. To them, the moon has always been a source of great magic and power. Divination of the future and blessings to help the tribe were dependent on the moon, particularly on its phases.
Distinguishing between full moon vs new moon was a natural part of their cultural or religious experience. Even today, Celtic and Native American tribes still practice rituals based on full moon vs new moon astrology. Differences between full moon vs new moon energy made the difference for these tribes in which rituals they would use.
In the guide below, we simplify what the differences are between the full moon and the new moon. We also tackle their meanings and their significance to astrology. Don’t wait now! Let’s get started and read up on the differences between the full moon and new moon!
What is Full Moon and New Moon?
They’re not two different moons, of course. There is only one moon that enters different phases, waxing and waning as its position changes relative to Earth. It is simple to say that the two extremes of its phases are the full moon and the new moon. Below, we discuss basic differences between full moon vs new moon.
New moons are present when the sky is darker and the moon is in the shadow of the Earth. It is the first lunar phase and many often mistake the moon for being invisible when this happens. Untrue, naturally; the moon is just not easy to see with the naked eye at the time. A telescope helps greatly in seeing the moon’s lunar disk.
New moons are symbols of rebirth and starting again. That’s another reason why it is the first lunar phase. Being the sign that the moon’s disk will appear over time is another. Astrologically, the new moon is nothing to fear. Ancient cultures see the new moon’s darkness as a time to do introspection and self-reflection. Darkness like that is like the darkness of the womb to them; a time to be reborn in comfort.
Basic visibility is one of the things that distinguishes full moon vs new moon. Full moons are much more obviously the pale lunar disk clear in the night sky. Another difference is the energy they bring.
In terms of full moon vs new moon energy, the full moon brings about much more active energy. Ending the lunar cycle, this phase charges the energy of people who see it. Even the term “lunatic” is something derived from the full moon’s name: “luna.” Energy that the lunatic displays is derivable from the energy of the full moon, hence the name.
Full Moon Meaning
The extent of the full moon meaning displays itself in a brilliant flash of energy releasing. Energy building over the whole lunar cycle releases as if to mark the end of the lunar cycle. After all, wouldn’t you say that some things are more fun under the night sky when there’s a full moon?
Astrology says that the energy you release with the appearance of the full moon is anything building over time. This means anger that you feel and steam in your head. Frustration and stress that was building up in your body over time too.
Write it all down. Release these feelings. It is not so much an act of explosive outburst that violently releases your energies. Try to think of it more as an act of freedom. Give yourself a chance to think “I am freeing myself of self-doubt and fear.” Let go of things that give you preconceived notions of the future or things that limit your belief.
Most importantly, trust that this release helps you make it happen! It’s one thing to just say it and not actually let go of your feelings and grudges. Genuinely let go. Don’t think of it as letting a person who gave you those feelings off the hook too easily. Think of it more as letting yourself breathe free from the negativity that it was bringing to your life.
Symbolic rituals during the full moon can help too. Try burning some herbs and breathing in and out. Let the smoke rise to the night sky and to freedom with your negative feelings. Allow your energy to carry up and away from you, free as you will be when you let go. Then find some people and celebrate! It’s a full moon, after all.
New Moon Meaning
The new moon meaning is all about manifesting new things through a cleansing of your inner workings. Burn some herbs or take a bath with essential oils. Do this in preparation for the new journeys that the new moon portends. Ask yourself then write it down: what do I want to attract and manifest in this new moon cycle?
New moon intentions are necessary for the things you want to manifest! After all, you can’t get what you want if you don’t know what you want. Lunar energy like this prepares you for the changes that you are bringing into your life. It prepares you for the transformation that is coming with the symbol of a new moon.
Think about situations and people too. Who are the people who you want to bring into your life? What about situations you want to be in? How would you like to experience those? Sit down in the darkness of the new moon and reflect on what you really want in life.
In the darkness of the new moon, your energy is like that of a child in the womb. Your rebirth is coming, a transformation from darkness to the light of life. When you know what you want, everything else gains direction and a purpose.
Strangely, it’s much harder to figure out what you want than to actually work towards getting it! That’s not always the case, naturally. However, life flows differently for you when you have a clear purpose. So get some paper and a crystal and write! Clear yourself and figure out what you really want. What you don’t want is not enough and never will be; it must be something positive.
Then pray. Welcome graceful growth and spend your energy well. Watch out for opportunities over the cycle!
Full Moon vs New Moon Meaning
The two meanings seem wildly different, so let’s simplify it a little further. When discussing full moon vs new moon meaning, it is important to note the different ends of the moon cycle. New moons are the beginning and full moons are the end. Because of this, their symbolism in astrology and the energy each brings to your life is vastly different.
In the new moon, your energy is all about setting a new path for personal betterment and change. It represents a time in your life where you figure out your goals and purpose. This is so you can direct your energy well over the cycle.
While under the full moon, energy is for release! Even as you spend your energy on actions to fulfill your goals throughout the lunar cycle, energy accumulates in you. That energy is sometimes positive and sometimes negative. Regardless of its nature, the full moon is a sign to release it in celebration or meditation respectively.
You’re either building energy under the new moon or releasing it under the full moon. As you live through the moon cycle, remember that its energy does affect you. Make your plans and move accordingly to take full advantage of the moon’s energy.