November’s Full Frosty Freezing Moon

Happy November Full Moon!

Welcome to Issue 11 of Volume VI of Earth, Moon and Stars!

   The moon became exact full Nov 6 (Thursday) at 22:23 Universal Time; correspondingly earlier in time zones west of Greenwich, later in time zones to the east. Because fullness occurred close to midnight in Greenwich, your best bet to see fullness will be Thursday night no matter where you are. See Seasonal Calendar below for times in some representative time zones.

   The sun (the actual sun, not the astrological sun) will continue moving through the constellation Libra until November 22; it will then enter (and thus obscure) the constellation Scorpius for just six days: November 23 through November 28. Now and for the next few days the moon will be swimming in the constellation Taurus. Pisces is the constellation most readily observable now and for the next few weeks.

Full Moon (Sally Kirkman)

Full Moon in Taurus (Sally Kirkman)

In this issue:

      • Moon Names ~ Frosty Moon | Freezing Moon | Corn Harvest Moon
      • Seasonal Calendar ~ Moon dates and times
      • Starwatch ~ Astronomy and Lore of the Zodiac ~ [Scorpio and Pisces]
      • Moon Art – “Frosty Moon” by Robin Samiljan
      • Astrology ~ Full Moon in Taurus: Stretching |Preparing for Winter

MOON NAMES

November’s Full Frosty Freezing Moon

     As you know (especially if you’ve been following this blog), many cultures in both hemispheres kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring full moon, appropriate for the month in which it occurred and keyed – naturally enough – to the goings-on in their natural environment . . . the weather, the plants, the animals.

Frosty Freezing Moon
.   I hope I’m not infringing on a trademark here. It’s just that the b-r-r-r in the air at this time of year in the Northern Hemisphere moved some folks a few centuries ago to give this full moon names such as Frosty Moon (Algonquin), Moon When Rivers Freeze (Arapaho), and Heading to Winter Moon (Comanche). Some non-chilly names were also given; I’m going to save them for future Novembers.

Frost Moon (F.T. McKinstry)

Frost Moon (F.T. McKinstry)

SEASONAL CALENDAR

November’s full moon:    Thurs Nov 6 22:23 UT; 5:23 pm ET; 2:23 pm PT; 12:23 pm HAST
.                                             Friday November 7 12:23 am IDT; 6:23 am PHT
November’s new moon:   Saturday November 22 12:33 UT; 7:33 am ET; 4:33 am PT
.                                              2:33 am HAST; 2:33 pm IDT; 8:33 pm PHT
December’s full moon:     Saturday December 6 12:27 UT; 7:27 am ET; 4:27 am PT
.                                             2:27 am HAST; 2:27 pm IDT; 8:27 pm PHT 

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STARWATCH

Astronomy and Lore of the Zodiac

  If you’ve been following this blog since last fall, you should be familiar by now with the basics of the zodiac. See the January post to brush up on the basics of the “astronomy behind the astrology”. Below is a diagram we’ve been using that you may find helpful in visualizing the zodiac.

   Briefly speaking, the astronomical zodiac consists of thirteen constellations that lie along the ecliptic. (“Thirteen?” you say? “I always heard there were twelve.” Well, this has to do with the difference between the astronomical and astrological zodiacs, which we touched on in the January post. We will explore it more in future posts.)

   You may recall from discussion on this blog in previous months that the ecliptic is the annual path that the sun seems to travel across the backdrop of the fixed stars. (The name ecliptic derives from the fact that lunar and solar eclipses can occur only when the moon crosses it.)

Zodiac diagram

Astrological zodiac diagram

   Early astrologers idealized the ecliptic as a circle, divided it into twelve equal segments or “signs”, and gave each sign the name of the constellation it was near on the ecliptic (at the time). Today the positions of the signs and the constellations, while still having the same (or similar) names, do not correspond with each other in the sky. This is due to a number of unrelated phenomena. (See the January post for details.)

Constellation of the Month: Scorpius the Scorpion

   Scorpius (Latin for “scorpion”) is the zodiac constellation we feature this month, because this is the time that the sun is considered to be in the Western (or tropical) astrological sign of Scorpio. (See below for the difference between where the sun actually is these days vs. its astrological position.)

Scorpius (Urania's Mirror)

Scorpio (Urania’s Mirror)

   Scorpius is the southernmost constellation of the Zodiac and is a “major showpiece of the starry sky” (EarthSky). Scorpius follows Libra the Scales on the Zodiac and contains many bright stars. This, in addition to its J-shape, makes it one of the easier constellations to find in the summer night sky.  (See my July post this year for details on finding and viewing Scorpius.) 

Scorpius Star Diagram (Universe Today)

Scorpius Star Diagram (Universe Today)

Scorpius Astronomy

   Scorpius is one of the oldest known constellations. It was recognized and named by the Sumerians some five millenia ago, coming way before the Greeks. It ranks 33rd in size among the 88 modern constellations cataloged by the IAU, occupying 497 square degrees on the dome of the sky. It was one of the 48 constellations originally charted by Ptolemy in the second century. Along with Libra the Scales, Scorpius lives in the third quadrant of the southern hemisphere (SQ3), and is observable from +40° N latitude all the way to the South Pole. It is preceded on the Zodiac by Libra to the west and succeeded by Sagittarius the Archer to the east.

Scorpius in the night sky

Scorpius in the night sky (EarthSky)

   The brightest star in the Scorpius constellation is Antares, the “heart” of the scorpion. Antares means the “rival of Mars”, so called because of its ruddy color (it’s a red giant) and its relative brightness. Two prominent stars that mark the tip of the scorpion’s curved tail are Shaula and Lesath, both names meaning “sting”. Because these stars are bright and close together, they are sometimes called the Cat’s Eyes. A number of other bright stars can be found in this constellation. (See the Wikipedia article Scorpius for details.) 

Sun in Scorpius (Bob's Spaces)

Sun in Scorpius (Bob’s Spaces)

   As noted in last month’s post, the entire constellation of neighboring Libra was considered in Ancient Greek times to be part of Scorpius – namely the scorpion’s claws. The division into Libra as its own constellation was formalized during Roman times.

   Interestingly, the Javanese people of Indonesia also recognize this group of stars as a constellation, but instead of a scorpion, they see in it a swan or a coconut tree.

   Scorpius can’t be seen in November because this is when it is on the other side of the Sun from us. As we pointed out in our July issue this year, July is the best time to view Scorpius. (See my July post for viewing details.) In contrast with astrological timing (see Astrological Sign of the Month below), astronomically the sun is in front of Scorpius for just six days, from November 23 to November 28. This is mainly due to neighboring Ophiuchus, which we will cover next month. (refs EarthSky, Universe TodayConstellation Guide, Wikipedia)

Scorpius History and Mythology

    Scorpius – as a giant scorpion – is almost always characterized in mythology as nemesis of Orion, inevitably bringing about the Great Hunter’s demise. There are various stories, some of which can get a bit complex; check out the above-referenced articles for details.

Orion vs. Scorpius

Orion vs. Scorpius

  The bottom line is that as major adversaries, the two chase each other eternally across the heavens, and as such are never both visible at the same time. (Scorpius is a summer constellation, while Orion dominates the Northern Hemisphere’s winter skies.) 

Astrological Sign of the Month: Scorpio

   Based on the constellation Scorpius, Scorpio is the eighth astrological sign in the Zodiac. Under the tropical zodiac, the sun transits the sign of Scorpio on average from October 23 and November 22 each year, occupying the span from 210 to 240 degrees in the idealized 360 degree circle. Scorpio is always depicted as a scorpion.

Scorpio (Wikipedia)

Scorpio (Wikipedia)

   According to some astrologies, Scorpio is a fixed water sign and considered to be a feminine mesmerizing, magnetic sign, governing the pelvic region of sex organs, bladder, and rectum. Scorpians are thought to be the “most intense, profound, powerful characters in the zodiac”. A calm self-controlled exterior often hides intense emotional energy underneath.  (See about.com and crysalinks for more detail.)

Symbology

Scorpio symbol

Scorpio symbol

The symbol (or glyph) for Scorpio () represents, of course, the scorpion, hinting at its sting and its reputation as dangerous. (about.com)

  The zodiac constellation easiest to see right now is Pisces the Fishes. (See our March issue when we featured this constellation.) Right now you will find Pisces at its peak in the sky around 10 pm local time. It will rise about five minutes earlier each night, peaking around 8 pm about a month from now.

   You will need a dark sky away from city lights to find Pisces, since it is a fairly dim constellation surrounded by many other stars in what early stargazers called the Sea (due to its profusion of constellations associated with water). Pisces lies northeast of Aquarius the Water Bearer and northwest of Cetus the Sea-monster.

   You can locate Pisces by first finding the Great Square of Pegasus, as shown in the diagram below. Then look for the Circlet of Pisces. More hunting details can be found in EarthSky’s article on Pisces. (refs EarthSky, EarthSky, Wikipedia)

Pisces in the Night Sky (EarthSky)

Pisces in the Night Sky (EarthSky)

Pisces Constellation in night sky (Wikipedia)

Pisces Constellation in night sky (Wikipedia)

Full Frosty Moon (Robin Samiljan)

Full Frosty Moon (Robin Samiljan)

     This beautiful watercolor is by Chicago artist Robin Samiljan from her collection
A Year of Moons“. Prints are available for purchase at Fine Art America

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ASTROLOGY

Molly Hall ~ Full Moon in Taurus – Soulful Earth

    Molly Hall is chief astrologer at about.com. This month Molly writes about the Full Moon in Taurus on her about.com astrology site in her article: “Soulful Earth, in which she advises us to “Be stealthy and deliberate, to make the most of the moment.” Here are some brief excerpts from this article:

   This Full Moon illuminates the skills and resources that nurture your talents; areas that could use a stronger foundation; sinking in where you are (literally and symbolically); steps to stability; a path to diligent creativity; your tenacious spirit; body pleasures; the cozy comforts of home.

   It’s a Good Time to: bloom where [you are] planted (though stay flexible to change); take stock of your finances; look at different ways of generating income; assess what has value; commit to your art or craft; allow yourself to move at a slower pace; revel in the sights, sounds and smells of nature; consolidate your resources; add a pleasing texture to your bedroom; be voluptuous; take a slow amble around; plant a tree; make a good investment; acquire land or real estate; stock up on your favorite foods; prepare your home for winter; fill your home with exquisite smells; prepare a mouthwatering meal and share it; keep it simple.

 

Taurus Full Moon (paradisefoundsantabarbara)

Taurus Full Moon (paradisefoundsantabarbara)

  Molly has a lot more helpful insight around this full moon. For the complete reads, click “Soulful Earth” and “Taurus Full Moon in the Houses: Earthing Possibilities“. Also visit Molly’s front page for more interesting astrology.

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Emily Trinkaus ~ Taurus Full Moon: Inner Stability in the Cauldron of Transformation

   Head priestess at Virgo Magic, Emily is based in Portland, OR, and works with astrology as a tool for healing, empowerment, personal growth and collective evolution. In addition, she and energy healer Katie Todd run the Full Moon Priestess website where they conduct monthly Full Moon Galactivation teleclasses for women.

Lost Love (collage by Emily)

Lost Love (collage by Emily)

   Emily’s column for this full moon is: Inner Stability in the Cauldron of Transformation. The full article is definitely worth a look. Here she tells us: “…the transformational energies brewing for the past six weeks are reaching a point of culmination and manifestation.

   She goes on to say that this Full Moon: “…brings to light where we might still be holding on, playing it safe, and staying stuck in ‘survival mode’ instead of full-on living” and “…we’re being pushed to transform our relationship with these areas of life, to ‘walk our edge’ when it comes to how we get our needs met and create material security.”

   Then she hits us with: “At the deepest level, Taurus rules self-love and self-worth. So much of the work of the past six weeks has been about uncovering our authentic desires – what we feel passionate about, what brings us alive. The Taurus Full Moon asks, Do you feel worthy of receiving what you want? How much pleasure, prosperity, fun, ease… do you allow into your life? Again, these are areas where we’re being called to stretch outside our comfort zones, and heal the underlying wounds that keep us playing small and closing off to the greater flow of life.

Emily has more good stuff to say on this. For the full read, click on Inner Stability in the Cauldron of Transformation to visit her page.

Full moon in Taurus

Full moon in Taurus

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   If you especially like something you see here, or would like to see something in particular covered in a future issue, or you have something interesting about the Earth, Moon, or Stars you would like to share, please leave a comment. I’m always interested in how folks who stop by here are moved/influenced/affected by what they encounter here.

   Until the full moon in December, here’s wishing all of us a month of stretching and preparing for winter!

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A NOTE ON WRITING STYLE

A few detail-oriented folks have inquired about my use (or mis-use) of Initial Caps in words like earth, moon, and sun. In the long run, it doesn’t affect understanding; Whether I write ”the President” or “the president”, you still know who I’m referring to. I write “the Northern Hemisphere”, just as you would (correctly) write “the West Coast”; it’s a proper name, and in English we capitalize proper names.

When it comes to suns and moons it can get confusing. There are billions of suns out there; we have given names to more than 40 million of them, ranging from names given in other languages (e.g., Aldebaran), to less fanciful but more utilitarian names, such as HD 140913. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) has decreed that our sun is the only one without such a proper name, although historically and in poesy it’s been called by quite a few.

Similarly for our moon. We’ve christened all of the other 182 moons in our solar system with names – ours is the only one we call the Moon.

Since we capitalize the names of all the other heavenly bodies (even asteroids and comets, for pity’s sake), I feel we ought to show at least as much respect for the ones most important to us. The IAU agrees.

So does Wikipedia. Their Manual of Style says: “The words sun, earth, moon and solar system are capitalized (as proper names) when used in an astronomical context to refer to a specific celestial body (our Sun, Earth, Moon and Solar System): The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System; The Moon orbits the Earth. They are not capitalized when used outside an astronomical context (The sky was clear and the sun felt warm), or when used in a general sense (Io is a moon of Jupiter).”

Sometimes it’s a fine line. If I write “by the light of the silvery moon”, I won’t capitalize it, because I’m referring to an image of the celestial body, not the body itself. By contrast, if I write, “the light from the Sun reflects off the surface of the Moon,” I capitalize both, because I’m referring directly to the celestial bodies.

If you inspect the archives of this blog, you will likely see many instances where I departed from this rule. We’ll call these oversights, and eventually I will correct them. Meanwhile, it’s an interesting challenge just to follow it in new writings. Are we having fun, yet?

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INTENTION FOR THIS EARTH, MOON AND STARS BLOG

The Earth, Moon and Stars blog is published once each Full Moon with (hopefully interesting) facts and lore about our moon and other sky phenomena. My wish is that you will have fun learning a bit more about our one and only natural satellite and how all of us — people, animals, plants, water, even rocks — are affected and connected by her.

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COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER

Unless otherwise noted, this blog claims no credit for any images appearing on it. Copyrighted images remain the property of their respective owners; attribution and/or links are provided when known. If there is an image appearing on this blog that belongs to you and you do not wish for it appear here, please leave a comment with your email address and a link to the image in question and it will be promptly removed. Your comment will not be made public.

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About aquarianman

Aquarian interested in anything to do with the Earth, our Moon, and anything flying around out there in space.
This entry was posted in Astrology, astronomy, Constellations, moon, Mythology and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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