17 May 2011

A Thought about Esbats

With the Full Moon Gathering (hosted by the Temple of the Dark Moon) taking place tomorrow evening in the Botanic Park, Adelaide as the Moon moves into Scorpio, for those of us calling ourselves Wiccan, Wytch or even Pagan, working with the Moon is an important part in the life.

The Goddess after all is honoured through the different phases of the Moon and in covens of old (pre-1980s), the esbat was the sacared meeting time when magick and healing was performed. This is because the phase of the Moon affects spellwork and ritual work.  Therefore, knowing what these phases mean is vitally important to working effective magick.

The phases of the Moon, along with the astrological signs she moves through, create a framework by which we can time our magickal workings. The major phases of the Moon are the New Moon, the Waxing Moon, the Full Moon, the Waning Moon and the Dark Moon. Right before the Waxing Moon, the powerful New Moon occurs and right before that is the Dark Moon, a very significant time, too. More about this is covered in depth in the Temple of the Dark Moon's Outer Court lectures as well as correspondence course.
One generalised mythological association of Goddesses with the various Moon phases is:
  • Diana/Artemis - The Maiden on Earth, the huntress rules the time of the New and Waxing Moons.
  • Selene - The Mother in the Sky, she rules the Full Moon.
  • Hekate - The Crone who resides under the Earth, the Waning and Dark Moons are her domain.**
 (**Those who work with the great Goddess of the Crossroads know that Hekate actually is more than just a Crone and in fact many of her actual guises reflect her in a maiden form.)
Whilst the Temple of the Dark Moon holds open esbats during the Winter months, these are perceived as no less important than any closed esbat gathering during the Summer months. Within a formally constructed circle, spellworking and healing is performed, Deity is honoured, and the coven members are bonded with like minded people, if even only for a short period of time.

Attending these gatherings provides non-members with an unique opportunity to meet members of the Temple of the Dark Moon in a working environment which is something that is not always offered or allowed. Regular attendance may result in personal invitations to gatherings at the covenstead at a later date.

The Full Moon Gatherings also offers those whose personal lifestyle or situation may not allow them to join the Temple on a more permanent basis, to bond once a month.
Regardless of the number of attendees, and whether the Gatherings are held at the covenstead or the park, the importance placed upon the esbat is the same.

More information about the Full Moon Gatherings offered by the Temple of the Dark Moon can be found on our web site.


  1. I love the picture of Artemis/Diana in blue with the bow and arrow. How do I go about seeing if it is okay if I use this picture for a YouTube video?

  2. Please reply to comment above at: gelfling79c@netscape.net
    Please type Artemis/Diana in your subject line. Thank you so much!