Each lunar cycle has a period of the dark moon. It is the time just prior to and sometimes a bit after the astrological conjunction of the Sun and Moon when no moonlight is visible in the sky. This can last up to 3 moonless nights as the lunar phase shifts from waning to waxing. This is not an eclipse, but a normal monthly occurrence that accompanies the New Moon.
The New Moon is when the Moon reaches the same sign and degree occupied by the Sun, astrologically speaking. As I write this, the New Moon in Sagittarius for 2016 is set to occur on Tuesday, Nov 29 at 4:18 am Pacific time. So today, Monday Nov 28 we are in a dark moon phase.
The Dark of the Moon is said to be the most powerful time for psychic reception and dream work. If you are especially sensitive to lunar energies, you might find yourself being more inwardly directed during the dark moon, more attuned to the soul's yearnings.
In ancient times, the Dark of the Moon was a time for mourning and integrating the deep losses of the last month. Emotionally the dark moon can trigger sorrow, confusion, and a profound soul angst if we don't have a perspective to know that it is a transient phase meant to help us clear and ground our grief.
Culturally, it has been said that we are living through a prolonged dark of the moon time -- one not limited to the astrological shifting of lunar phases, but the the evolutionary progression of humankind. We can see that in global responses to climate change, politics, and a diffuse feeling of being unsettled with an uncertain future.
The militarized police actions taken against often innocent individuals have spurred the Black Lives Matter movement. Corporate and local government disregard for treaties and sacred land have prompted assaults against the Protectors at Standing Rock. And the US election of an unprepared, unethical, and apparently unstable businessman as president is another sign of the reactions of the collective unconscious to dealing with loss, grief, uncertainty and fear.
Magickally, it is a time between, when things are gestating on the spirit level but not yet born into human consciousness. This can leave us anxious without knowing why, as well as atypically open to spirit visitations, more clarity during channeling, and increased ability to connect with the deceased.
Some of us feel even more aligned with the darkness of the winter season, and with the Great Mysteries during the Dark of the Moon in Sag, Capricorn (Dec 28), and Aquarius (Jan 27). Others find themselves thinking more than usual about death -- their own, or that of loved ones. There is no solid evidence for any increase in suicide during the Dark of the Moon, but there may be a pull toward thinking about what the after life will be like, and what legacy you would be leaving behind. Those who aren't magickally inclined may just notice feeling especially tired or overly sensitive to noise, light, and emotional drama. And this time has been known to help introverts open up more, although extroverts may feel more apprehensive.
The Dark of the Moon is a good time for rituals of letting go, and prayers for undesired habits, cravings, relationships, or situations to come to a comfortable and swift ending so that new growth can proceed as it should. The Dark of the Moon can stir up uncertainty and fear but it is also a time for letting go, for giving such concerns to the Great Mystery and allowing ourselves to expand the sense of trust that even though we may not be able to see all the details of the future, that we will survive and all will be well.