Find your moon with moon phase calculator
Every time you look into the night sky, the moon looks just a little different than it did the night before. This is because the moon goes through phases, where it shows a slightly different version of itself depending on its position in space compared to the sun.
Many people feel a special connection to the moon, especially women. Some feel energized by the light of the moon, similar to how people yearn for the sun. The moon is said to affect life here on earth, from our moods and emotions to fertility and even life changes.
This is why many people also choose to make decisions according to the moon’s phases. Just like the moon, we go through our own phases of growth, energy, and restoration, though many of us do so without recognizing it. Knowing which phase the moon is in can reveal the why behind how we feel and think at any given moment.
What are the phases of the moon?
The moon has eight distinct phases, all of which are completed within a span of about 29.5 days. They are:
- New moon
- Waxing crescent
- First quarter
- Waxing gibbous
- Full moon
- Waning gibbous
- Third quarter
- Waning crescent
After the waning crescent, another New Moon appears and the cycle begins again.
Many people erroneously refer to the quarter moon phases as a half moon, as the moon looks to be only half illuminated in the sky. But because we only see half of the moon when it’s “full” since the other side is dark, the “half” moons are actually only a quarter of the moon’s surface.
Why does the moon have phases?
Just like the earth orbiting the sun, the moon is spinning through space as it orbits our planet. Because the sun illuminates the surface of the moon, we can only see parts of the moon depending on the moon’s location in relation to the sun.
Remember, the moon is spinning while orbiting around Earth. At the same time, Earth is spinning while orbiting the sun. Earth and the moon are not perfectly synchronized, which is why we see the moon in various stages.
The meanings behind moon phases
Each phase is said to hold unique energies and characteristics, some of which can be explained by science and others that are more reliant on faith and belief. For example, you’ve probably heard tons of stories about people acting differently during a full moon. Hospitals claim more babies are born during the full moon phase, while police officers may agree that their days are more chaotic.
These are common examples that are fairly consistent around the world, but the full moon isn’t the only phase where unique characteristics are evident.
New Moon Meaning
This is typically a time of restoration. Now is the time to unplug, turn off, and focus on you.
Waxing Crescent Meaning
Scientifically, this moon phase is when the moon is starting to grow noticeably “bigger.” Now is the time to start setting intentions and preparing for new things.
First Quarter Moon Meaning
This moon phase appears a week after the new moon. This is a time of action, usually in overcoming hurdles related to the intentions you recently set.
Waxing Gibbous Meaning
Coming closer to a full moon, this moon phase represents a period of refinement. Use the increase in light to get clarity about what comes next.
Full Moon Meaning
Energies are at a fever pitch during a full moon. Emotions run high, but you can use this to your benefit as you start to reap what you sowed.
Waning Gibbous Meaning
As the light of the moon begins to fade, the waning gibbous is a time of gratitude. Use this time to reflect on your choices and appreciate what you were able to reap during the full moon.
Third Quarter Moon Meaning
A new moon is coming closer, so use this time to prepare for release. This is often a time of letting go, whether it’s past grudges, resentment, or general feelings of ill will.
Waning Crescent Meaning
Now that just a sliver of light remains, it’s time to prepare for your restoration. Tie up loose ends on projects and think about how you will reset your intentions for the next cycle.
How to find the moon’s phase on any day
Using a moon phase calculator can help you know the moon’s phase on any given date: past, present, or future. This way, you can prioritize the right activities if you choose to live by the moon. Or, you can use your moon phase to create a stunning, unique moon phase poster to commemorate a special date.
Try our free moon phase calculator here to learn how the moon looked during your most special milestone moments!