This Wednesday’s total full moon eclipse will be of epic proportion.   It is the Harvest Moon of October, sometimes called Hunter’s Moon.  Due to its proximity to earth it appears larger than average.  It will also bring the dramatic allure of holding the biblical reference of blood moon, being one of four serial total eclipses (tetrad) and landing on the Jewish harvest moon of Sukkot.   This rather apocalyptic reference might be overly dramatic, however.  These eclipse tetrads happen fairly frequently, about 4 times a century.

The harvest full moon of October is a time to worship Lakshmi the goddess of abundance, and this specific full moon is called Sharad Purnima or Kojaagari Purnima in certain parts of India.  In some locations people stay up all night and sing songs under the moonlight, which is imbued with special healing properties and the blessing of the goddess of material abundance, Laksmi.  

It is appropriate that this harvest celebration falls in the nakshatra of Revati. Revati is the final nakshatra, marking the end of Pisces and is often translated as “the wealthy.”    It is connected to material wealth and abundance of all kinds.  It consists of thirty-two faint stars and a mysterious and unique ring of dark matter in the constellation of Pisces.  Being the final lunar mansion in the zodiac cycle it marks the end and beginning of all things.  The plants harvested at this time must die, but their seeds are ready to begin again.  This natural cycle is symbolized by the Revati drum and its cyclical rhythmic markings of meter and time.  Revati is the womb of the divine mother where death and rebirth are connected.   It gives this full moon a high spiritual motivation and it said to be a sign of deep faith and liberation (Moksha).

The deity of Revati is Pushan, a kindly and toothless (meaning harmless) entity who protects, nourishes and guides flocks of animals and vulnerable travelers.  Shelter and abundant fertility is the theme of this comforting moon.   It would seem that getting out the drums and basking in the moonlight would be a good plan…  but this Lakshmi pooja party is getting crashed by an uninvited guest.   Rahu, the head of the snake will swallow the Revati moon completely by about 4:00 am (PST) on Wednesday Morning. 

Eclipses often harbor great transformation and unexpected changes in the area it affects for 6 months or longer after it occurs.   Depending on where this eclipse cycle is falling in your natal chart, you will experience the effect in a unique area of your life.  

The involvement of combust and debilitated Venus could stir up unresolved issues in relationships and friendships.   Clumsy mistakes could cause upheavals, and social contracts are particularly vulnerable.   Sidereal Venus is also in mutual exchange (parivartana) with retrograde Mercury, and miscommunications could flare up into total misunderstandings.   However, with deliberate selfless focus, this time has the potential for transformational relationship work.   Considering the tight conjunction of Uranus and its square aspect of Pluto, this eclipse seems like it could brings waves of great change and innovation, welcomed or not.

Although it would appear that this harvest moon will reap an unanticipated yield, the blessed trinal aspect of exalted Jupiter promises to carry us through to the best possible outcome.   Jupiter gives this eclipse a particularly powerful spiritual boost.   Meditating indoors (unexposed to moonlight), perhaps just focusing on the rhythm of our breath or the rhythm of ocean waves, could give mind expanding and transformational experiences.

In general, travel is not advised on this full moon night and we should not over exert ourselves, especially our feet (because the feet are ruled by this part of the sky).  Keeping pets safely indoors and under our watch may be a good precaution as well.   Any type of fermentation or brewing process, like kefir or kombucha is likely to go awry.   Make sure you have no cream or milk in your kitchen that is going bad.   Remember to drink plenty of liquids and don’t go swimming far out in the ocean.

Have you been having a hard time making decisions and keeping focused the last few days?  Since last Wednesday, Mercury has come to a dead halt in the nakshatra of Swati, and has now turned retrograde!   This particularly vata visciated position in the ever swaying and uncertain nature of Swati has the possibility of leaving one feeling anxious, distracted or confused.  Mercury will speed up and back out of Swati by Thursday.  In the meantime, calm vata with a hot bath and applying sesame oil to the skin. 

Mercury retrograde may be frustrating, but it can really strengthen creative brilliance, especially after it backs up into Chitra on Thursday Oct 9.