Waxing moon period: 7/27/2014 to 8/9/2014
Waxing first quarter moon: 8/3/2014
Full Herb Moon: 8/10/2014
Waning moon period: 8/11/2014 to 8/24/2014
Waning last quarter moon: 8/17/2014
New Moon: 8/25/2014
August is the month of the Full Herb Moon, the first harvest (wheat), and the Lammas sabbat. Now is the time to harvest your herbs for magical, cooking, and medicinal use all through the next twelve months. Herbs reaped during both the waxing and waning phases of this month are the most potent than at any other time of the year. On this full moon night, you are balanced between the growing and the great reaping. Any magic involving herbs will be especially powerful. Practice divination with the ogham, otherwise known as the tree alphabet, or with tea leaves.
Dress your altar with the same large cloth of yellow as last month to represent summer, or you could use a cloth of light green. Top it with a smaller green cloth patterned with leaves and flowers, adjusted diagonally so you can see the points of the cloth beneath. Place a wreath of herbs flat on your altar as a centerpiece and set within it a pot of living herbs. Add herbs tied in poppet-shapes or bundles such as sage smudge-sticks. Make plant effigies of the Lord and Lady. You can also decorate your altar with the intricate wheat weavings known as corn dollies. Because Lammas also falls within this month, you could make one altar to celebrate both the full Herb Moon and the sabbat.
Waxing Moon Magic
From the night after the last new moon to the full Herb Moon:
If you plan to use fresh herbs or freeze them for future use, gather them during the waxing moon in the morning after the dew has dried. Cast prosperity spells to make your harvest as good as it can be. The waxing Herb Moon phase is also the best time to gather herbs sacred to the God. During the waxing moon you should craft anything involving herbs such as sachets, poppets, bread, salad dressing, wine, oils, lotions, potpourri, tinctures, tea, et cetera. These creations will carry the strength and vibrancy of the waxing Herb Moon when you use them throughout fall and winter.
Full Moon Magic
On the night of the full Herb Moon of August, work any magic requiring the use of herbs. If you have nothing pressing in mind, then meditate on herbs. Surround yourself with potted herbs, close your eyes, and float your hands over the tops of their leafy forms. Do you get a better feeling from some herbs than from others? Why? Write down your insights in your Book of Mirrors. These clues can give you insights into which gods are watching out for you. You can learn a lot from the psychic impressions sent to you from herbs. You could also practice divination with the ogham, otherwise known as the tree alphabet, or read tea leaves. These plant-based forms of divination should be especially responsive and accurate on the night of the full Herb Moon. Do a ritual of thanksgiving for the bounty of the first harvest.
Waning Moon Magic
From the night after the full Herb Moon to the next new moon:
If you plan to dry and store your herbs, gather them during the waning moon in the morning after the dew has dried. Cast banishing spells to rid your crops of any blight or insect infestation such as aphids. The waning Herb Moon phase is also the best time to harvest herbs sacred to the Goddess. During the waning Herb Moon phase, use cleansing herbs such as rosemary, lavender, and mint to freshen your house and surroundings and cast banishing spells to rid your life of psychic sludge. You can scrub down wooden tables, cutting boards, or floors with a strong tea made of mint. Rosemary can be bruised and hung in closets to infuse its surroundings with its bracing evergreen scent. A powder of lavender flowers and cornstarch can be shaken into the carpet, left overnight, and vacuumed or swept up in the morning as an all-purpose freshener.
See also Names of the Twelve Full Moons.
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