October’s Big Chestnut Moon

Happy October Full Moon!

Welcome to Issue 10 of Volume VIII of Earth, Moon and Stars!

IN THIS ISSUE
(click any of these section links)

WHAT’S COOKIN’

FULLNESS
   The moon will become full Sunday, October 16, at 04:23 UT, correspondingly earlier in time zones west of the Prime Meridian, later in time zones to the east. (See my December 2014 issue for some clarification about UT-Universal Time.)

  Because technical fullness will occur this time just a few hours after midnight at the Prime Meridian, Ms. Luna will appear fullest Saturday night to folks west of the Middle East (which will be on the cusp) and west to the International Date Line. Places east of the cusp and east to the Date Line will see maximum fullness on Sunday night, though to the casual observer she will appear to be full Saturday as well. Check Seasonal Calendar below for exact times in some representative time zones.

FOLKLORE
   The second of two Black Moons in a row is coming at the end of the month! See Folklore for the lowdown.

MOON NAMES
   Since June we’ve climbed from strawberry moon to blackberry moon to mulberry moon. This month we’re topping out with the Big Chestnut Moon. Check out Moon Names for the full story and some neat pics.

Moon, Chestnut Tree and an Owl (David Inshaw)

Moon, Chestnut Tree and an Owl (David Inshaw)

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MOON MOTION QUIZ
   Continuing the journey we began in our July issue, here’s the next installment in my attempt to pique your interest in how our nearest sky neighbor shakes, rattles, and rolls. As noted in July when we began this new adventure, since the details of this rather large subject can become complex, we’re approaching it in small, simple steps. Here’s the quiz question for this month:

.Q: Does the Moon have an actual “dark” side?

Click Moonmotion to see the “revealing” answer.

JUST SAYIN’
   In this next installment of my new personal opinion section Just Sayin’, I continue the theme of All of Us with another inspirational peace song and video, this one by a passionate young Australian man.

THE MOON AND CHESTNUT TREE IN ART and POESY
   Edvard Munch and Paul Cézanne painted chestnut trees, as did many other artists. And the moon and the chestnut tree find their way into poetry. Check out the Moon Art and Moon Poetry sections.

SUN-RELATED CELEBRATIONS
   The seasons originally determined the date for Halloween. See Celebrations for details.

ASTROLOGY
   Astrologers Æterna and Molly Hall offer us insight at this full moon in Aries in Astrology. 

HUMOR
  In continuation of our new Humor section, Calvin (of Calvin and Hobbes) is aggrieved to find that his mom takes exception to the predictions of his horoscope.

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SEASONAL CALENDAR
Moon Dates and Times

October’s full moon        Sunday Oct 16 04:23 UT; 7:23 am IDT; 12:23 pm AWST/PHT;  3:23 pm AEST
.                                            Sunday Oct 16 12:23 am EDT
.                                            Saturday Oct 15 6:23 pm HAST; 9:23 pm PDT

Oct’s 2nd new moon      Sunday Oct 30 17:38 UT; 7:38 am HAST; 10:38 am PDT; 1:38 pm EDT
. Black Moon?*                Sunday Oct 30  7:38 pm IST
.                                            Monday Oct 31 1:38 am AWST/PHT; 4:38 am AEDT
.                                            (*See “Folklore” in September’s post for “New Moon~Black Moon” details.)

Daylight Saving Time Began:
.                                           Sunday Oct 2 [Eastern Australia]
Daylight Saving Time Ends:
.                                           Sunday Oct 30 [United Kingdom, Israel]
.                                           Sunday Nov 6 [USA, Canada, Mexico]
.                                           (Check TimeandDate to see DST changes for the location of your choice]

November’s full moon    Monday Nov 14 13:52 UT; 3:52 am HAST; 5:52 am PST; 8:52 am EST
.                                            Monday Nov 14 3:52 pm IST; 9:52 pm AWST/PHT
.                                            Tuesday Nov 15 12:52 am AEDT

November’s new moon  Tuesday Nov 29 12:18 UT; 2:18 am HAST; 4:18 am PST; 7:18 am EST
.                                            Tuesday Nov 29 2:18 pm IST; 8:18 pm AWST/PHT; 11:18 pm AEDT

.                                        Check out Moon Giant to find Full Moon and New Moon times for your local time zone.

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FOLKLORE

Second of Two “Black Moons”

    In last month’s issue we revealed how and why there was a “black moon” at the end of September for some places on Earth, with another one at the end of October for other places — actually on Halloween in some select time zones. See Folklore in the September issue for all the good info — and whether or not the location where you are qualifies for this one.

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MOON NAMES

Big Chestnut Moon

   As you know, many cultures around the world kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring full moon, appropriate for the season in which it occurred and keyed – naturally enough – to the goings-on in their natural environment . . . the weather, the plants, the animals.

Full moon, gnarled tree and boy   In previous Octobers we’ve featured a number of folk names this full moon has been and is known by. The prevailing name that the Old Farmer’s Almanac and other sources report is Hunter’s Moon – the full moon following the Harvest Moon. We featured this name in 2011 (October’s Hunters Moon), 2012 (October’s Hunter’s Wine Blood Full Moon) and in 2014 (October’s Full Eclipsing Blood | Hunter’s Moon).  Shifting gears, in 2013 we took note of the Kindly Moon, and last year we had a lot of fun with the Halloween Pumpkin Moon.

  At least two tribes indigenous to North America named this full moon Big Chestnut Moon: the Muscogee/Creeks (Southeast, Alabama, Georgia) called it “otowoskv-rakko” and the Seminole (Florida) “otauwooskochee” ~ because this is the time of year the chestnuts ripen and drop from the trees. (refs:  American Indian Moons, Family Search.)

As with other nuts, the chestnut – the seed of the tree – is encapsulated in a husk, in this case a rather spiny one.  

Unripe horse chestnuts

Unripe horse chestnuts on the tree

Ripe chestnuts on ground

Ripe chestnuts on the ground

Like other nuts such as walnuts, and in contrast with fruits such as apples and pomegranates, chestnuts are not harvested while still on the tree: you wait until they have dropped to the ground. Then you roast ’em, peel ’em, and eat ’em — yumm!

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 See the Art and Poetry sections below for more chestnut-inspired creations.

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CELESTIAL MECHANICS ~ MOON MOTION

 The Two Sides of the Moon

    Q: Is there a “dark” side of the Moon?
    A: No, not really, any more than there is a (constantly) dark side of the Earth.

Moon’s Face
.   The common misconception that there is one side of the Moon that is always dark or unlit derives from the actual fact that there is a “near side” and a “far side” of the Moon as observed from Earth. As she circles us, Ms. Luna is also spinning on her own axis at a speed that keeps the same side facing us at all times. This is no accident; over billions of years she has become “tidally locked” to Earth. The same is true for most of the other larger moons in our Solar System.

   The term “dark side of the moon” refers to the side we can’t see from Earth, not because it is always unlit, but because it is unseen and thus unknown and mysterious. We do have pictures of this far side, but no one has landed there yet. If you are curious and would like to know more, I recommend you begin with these articles: What and where is the dark side of the moon?” (howstuffworks), Far side of the Moon” (Wikipedia), and Tidal Locking” (Wikipedia).

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JUST SAYIN’

Continuing the “All of Us” Theme

   I introduced this section in July’s issue to offer a more unifying perspective on the troubles and pain we humans continue to inflict on each other. Many poets have expressed how calming the moon can be, due ~ among other things ~ to her perspective from above, her constant blessing of us while we deal with chaos below, and also to her silence. (See Just Sayin’ in July’s issue for my expansion on this point of view.)

   This perspective sees all of us as equal passengers on this bright blue marble. My July, August, and September posts offered songs in a variety of styles I’d found expressing this idea. I think this theme of inclusivity is so crucial to saving us from ourselves, I’ve continued it this month with another song from the younger generation, Get Along by Australian singer/songwriter Guy Sebastian. Click the photo to open the YouTube page where you can listen to him singing it over a very powerful and moving video.

Guy Sebastian “Get Along”

   Excerpt from the chorus:

Dear God, dear soul
Dear Mary, Muhammad
Dear heart, dear life
Dear soldier, dear martyr
Can we all just get along?

   Click this AZLyrics link for the full lyrics. And when you click “SHOW MORE” underneath the YouTube video you will see evidence of this talented and heart-centered young man’s commanding presence on the Web, including a Facebook page, his own website, a Wikipedia article, and more.

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THE MOON IN ART

Munch’s “Chestnut Tree”

   While Vincent van Gogh did paint chestnut trees, I’ve featured his works here so often I thought it would be good to branch out (oooh, sorry – I didn’t see that pun coming) and include some other artists’ trees. Here is an oil painting of a chestnut tree by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch (1863-1944):

  Regarded as a pioneer in the Expressionist movement, you may recognize him as creator of “The Scream”:

The Scream by Edvard Munch

‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch

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 You can find more about this artist on Poul Webb’s blogspot and on Wikipedia.

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   Not to be left out of the running, Paul Cézanne did right by the chestnut tree around 1885:

Chestnut Trees and Farm at Jas de Bouffan (Paul Cézanne 1885c)

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THE MOON and CHESTNUT TREE IN POESY

Moon Haiku

Matsuo Bashō (1644 – 1694) is recognized today as the greatest master of Haiku.
Here is an offering that’s appropriate to our theme:

secretly at night
a worm under the moon
bores into a chestnut

Bashō’s Haiku translated from Japanese into English by Jane Reichhold.
And see Britannica’s biography of Matsuo Bashō.

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“The Village Blacksmith” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

   Although it doesn’t have the moon in it, I couldn’t very well have an issue featuring the chestnut tree without including this famous poem:

Under a spreading chestnut-tree
The village smithy stands;
The smith, a mighty man is he,
With large and sinewy hands;
And the muscles of his brawny arms
Are strong as iron bands.

   There are seven more stanzas. You can read the entire poem at this page of the Maine Historical Society.

   One of the joys I derive from putting this blog together is discovering history I doubt I would ever have otherwise. Perhaps you knew – tho I didn’t – that the blacksmith and chestnut tree in the poem lived just down the street from where Longfellow was living in Cambridge (MA) when he wrote it in 1840. More poignantly, when the tree was cut down in 1876 due to safety concerns, children of Cambridge raised money to have a chair constructed from its wood and presented it to Longfellow on his 72nd birthday.

Longfellow's Chestnut Tree Chair

Longfellow’s Chestnut Tree Chair

This chair can be seen at the Longfellow House National Historic Site.
(ref: Cambridge Historical Society)

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SUN-RELATED CELEBRATIONS

Halloween

   We had a lot of fun in last October’s Great Pumpkin Full Moon issue, and in the Moon Names section there we revealed how the date for celebrating Halloween was originally determined by seasons, using astronomical observations of the sun. Click on those links to find out more.

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ASTROLOGY

Moon Travels Through the Zodiac

  Unlike the Earth – which takes 365+ days to make a complete circuit through the zodiac – the moon takes just a month to complete an entire round. This means she spends on average only two and a half days in each zodiac sign.

Moon in Signs and Void of Course

   Technical astrologers call the times while Ms. Luna is in transition from one sign to the next “void of course”. This is considered to be a sort of neither-here-nor-there state, which many people feel as being unsettled or ungrounded. Each astrologer chooses their own method for calculating times of beginning and ending VoC. You can find interesting VoC info and tables at Dr. Standley and at Moontracks.

   Referencing the Moontracks table, we find that Ms. Luna will enter the sign of Aries on Friday (14th) at 15:08, and will remain there until she becomes full on Sunday (16th) at 04:23, when she will become VoC. She will then enter the next sign, Taurus, later that same day at 15:04. (Times here are UT~Universal Time.)

Aries (©Anna Shaw)

Æterna ~  

Aries Full Moon
“It’s a Fire”

   Æterna is a professional astrologer based in Italy, who also runs her own website Aeternalight Astrology “The Cosmic Path to a Conscious Life”, where she claims introspection and compassionate understanding as two of the major assets she brings to her astrology practice.

   For this full moon in Aries, Æterna notes:

[This full moon] showcases a…twine of poignant, emotional sensitivity and impassioned ardor. 

   Rather than excerpting more here, I refer you to Æterna’s post for this Full Moon in Aries – It’s a Fire. Because Æterna’s style is both sensitive and pithy, you will want to set aside some quiet time to reflect on and let what she writes soak in. 

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Molly Hall ~  

Full Moon Time

   Molly Hall is resident astrologer at about.com, where she provides both technical and practical insights derived from traditional interpretations of the positions of the stars and planets.

   Although she has not posted about the specific signs the full moon has recently passed through, she did write this month about The Full Moon in general, what energy it carries, and how you can prepare for it.

   In addition to her insights around full moons, Molly offers the following helpful articles:

   Also visit Molly’s front page for lots more interesting astrology.

Aries Full Moon

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HUMOR

Calvin and Hobbes: Mom Against the Universe

   In this fourth installment of the Calvin and Hobbes series we began in July, Calvin’s mom does not share his faith in the prognosticating abilities of the planets . . .

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FROM ME TO YOU

    Thank you, dear reader, for visiting EM&S this “moonth”. I hope you liked it.

   If you especially liked (or disliked) something you saw 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 feel free to leave a comment. I’m always interested in how folks who stop by here are moved/influenced/affected by what they encounter here. And please don’t be shy about sharing this post with friends if you like it!

   Note that I have a separate post called ARCHIVES which contains a list of all the titles I’ve posted since the inception of this blog. The titles are clickable of course. Easier and more informative than just the dates that appear in the right-side Archives column. (I’m slowly learning more things I can make WordPress do. There’s a lot there!)

   Until the full moon in November,
here’s wishing all of us a month with
emotional release, passion, and humor.

~ Moonlight to all,
Marty

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My Personal Take on Astrology

  Some folks have wondered why I have an astrology section in a blog that purports to be “science” oriented. I suppose I could cite ancient cultures in which astronomy and astrology were the domain of the same person. And that a broader way of understanding the aim of science is to expand knowledge (the word science being derived from the Latin word  scīre “to know”). My own sense is that while we humans live in a material world that runs by certain rules of physics, we each experience our lives in this world subjectively. It’s what makes us similar and at the same time unique.
   How much do celestial bodies influence our lives? Certainly the Sun and the Moon have noticeable gravitational effects on water and even rocks. Electromagnetic and particle radiation from the Sun has both obvious and subtle effects on just about everything on this planet. Even moonlight affects plants and animals.  I do not claim to know if or how much these and other celestial bodies affect us directly, but I like the wisdom, warmth and humanness that the astrologers I feature express in their writing, and believe that including them not only expands my potential audience, but also exposes folks to ways of thinking about their own lives that they might not have otherwise considered. Let me know your take on this. I won’t make your comment public if you ask me not to.

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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 or compositions (e.g. songs, poetry) appearing on it. Copyrighted works remain the property of their respective owners; attribution and/or links are provided when known. If there is content appearing on this blog that belongs to you and you do not wish for it to appear here, please leave a comment with your email address and a link to the item 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.
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