The Mystique Behind The Moon Cycle

The moon is our closest planetary neighbor. It is 380,000 kilometres away from us, yet its forces have been shown to directly affect our environment. Don’t believe us? What about ebb and flow?

Words:NicoleImages:UnsplashMay 01, 2021

Isn’t it crazy to consider that a celestial body that seems infinitely far away also influences processes that take place inside our body? On the other hand, can it be a coincidence that we get our period once a month – and a lunar cycle lasts exactly that long? The question arises, is menstruation related to the moon?

The moon and its general influence on humans

The moon is our closest planetary neighbour. It is 380,000 kilometres away from us, yet its forces have been shown to directly affect our environment. Don’t believe us? What about ebb and flow?

Being asked about the influence of the moon on humans most people today refer to the subject of sleep. They state that they are more restless, sleep less well and have more nightmares during a full moon. In fact, however, the moon’s influence on human life goes far beyond this and is deep-rooted in human culture.

In the past, it was completely normal for people to align their lives with the phases of the moon. Lunar calendars dictated how people could live most effectively – when to grow vegetables, when to fertilise, even when it was best to cut one’s hair.

Our entire earth is affected and balanced by the moon. And we as humans, as difficult as it sometimes is to realize in our modern world, are part of nature. The moon not only influences the tides with high and low tide, but also the speed of rotation and our climate.

Thinking about it, it seems only logical that everything in nature is connected with each other. After all, it didn’t emerge by chance and was suddenly the way we find it today. It has evolved over millions of years and is so unbelievably coordinated and functional in many places that you can hardly believe it. And that is the circle of life – the fact that every living thing is somehow interconnected and one energy conditions the next energy, and that everything in life runs in ever-repeating cycles: The moon, the seasons, the times of day, life and death. All this and so much more.

What does science say?

Science is uncertain when it comes to the link between our bodies and the moon. There are at least as many scientific studies supporting the existence of such link as there are studies not supporting it. Prof. Günter Freundl, J. Rohrbach and Dr. Michael Bremme, who in fact found that an above-average number of women menstruate at new moon or full moon, state that even though this correlation has been proven with figures, there is no real explanation for it. 

What is certain is that the moon with its gravitational field causes the tides and that it even has an influence on the earth’s crust. However, one cannot necessarily deduce a biological influence on the rhythm of bodily functions from this.

What also makes one doubt the theory of the correlation of moon phases and menstrual cycles are the different cycle lengths of American (longer) and Asian women (shorter) or of non-human beings. The cycle of an elephant cow lasts up to four months, that of a chimpanzee an average of 37 days. So why should the moon only have an effect on the human organism?

In the end, it is two sides – two opinions. And the question will probably occupy human minds for some time to come. But even if we can’t bring back the old days, it’s a nice idea to be more in tune with nature. And listening more to your body and seeing if your cycle matches that of the moon can’t hurt at the end of the day, though. You might end up finding out things about yourself and your period that you didn’t know before.

The different phases of the moon

The moon takes 28 days to orbit the earth once. This cycle can be divided into four main phases: New Moon, Waxing Moon, Full Moon and Waning Moon. Each phase is associated with different energies that you may start to feel when you first pay attention.

The New Moon represents new beginnings. It is not visible, “empty” so to speak – so your energy level is at its lowest point, but it is the best time to manifest your desires, goals and plans for the cycle ahead.

In the Waxing Moon your batteries are slowly replenishing. It is the time of growth and healing. This is when you should put into action the goals you have set for yourself and actively strive forward.

The Full Moon is the most intense phase of the month – the energy is at its peak (and sometimes going crazy), and you are usually particularly creative and full of energy at this time. So here you can prepare to reap the harvest that you sowed at the New Moon. It is also the time of healing, when you should let go of old injuries. If you are struggling particularly badly with nightmares at the Full Moon, do not think of it as punishment, but rather as an outlet for old baggage that you are releasing at this time.

In the Waning Moon, ongoing projects are completed. Here you slowly withdraw, do more self-reflection and make room for something new.

You may find that your energy changes with the moon during the month. For example, if you feel powerless for no obvious reason sometimes, check if this is related to the phases of the moon.

How the moon and menstruation cycle are connected

In ancient times, knowledge about the connection between the moon and women was widespread. Women used their menstrual cycle as a source of creative, spiritual, sexual, emotional, mental and physical energy. 

Can you imagine that at that time menstruation was considered a “sacred event”? Nowadays, this is no longer the case. It seems like we have almost ” forgotten” to see our periods as a gift and an opportunity for monthly “renewal” – instead we perceive them as a physical and emotional burden. Yet, we have approximately 500 periods in our lifetime. So, the best thing we can do is to find our way back to the deep connection between our body and nature. We can reclaim the power of our periods and use them positively for ourselves.

It is striking that the female cycle has an almost identical length to the lunar cycle – 28, 29 days. At least in the natural case – even if this varies slightly from woman to woman and can be influenced by external factors such as hormones. By the way, light also plays a role here: artificial light sources such as screens on PCs, televisions or mobile phones, to which we expose ourselves daily, can affect our cycle and ” disrupt ” its natural sequence.

Just like the lunar cycle, our menstrual cycle has four phases and exerts different energies on us in each phase. In mythology, these phases were referred to as follows: witch phase (= bleeding), virgin phase (= end of bleeding), mother phase (= ovulation), and sorceress phase (= pre-menstrual phase). If you have already studied your cycle a little and learned to notice small signs and changes, you have probably recognized how your needs and energies change during your cycle.

Most women interact with the lunar cycle in one of two ways: their menstruation coincides with either the full moon phase or the new moon phase. The menstrual cycle may not coincide perfectly and precisely with the lunar cycle, but it always lengthens and shortens in such a way that ultimately menstruation does begin around the time of the full moon or new moon each month.

The White Moon Cycle

Getting your period around the new moon is called the “White Moon Cycle”. In mythology, this variant is considered the “optimal” and “purest”. The body is then said to be in perfect harmony with nature and attributes to the woman a certain clarity that is inherent in her with regard to life. This is because in the White Cycle the energetic phases of menstruation and the moon are very close to each other. In other words: the biology of our body runs parallel to the effect that the individual phases of the moon have on our mind: 

  • 1st phase: New moon = bleeding = witch phase
  • 2nd phase: Waxing moon = end of bleeding = virgin phase
  • 3rd phase: Full moon = ovulation = mother phase
  • 4th phase: Waning moon = pre-menstrual phase = sorceress phase

The Red Moon Cycle

Unlike in the White Moon Cycle, women in the Red Moon Cycle menstruate not at new moon, but at full moon. Menstruation is therefore in opposition to the moon:

  • 1st phase: New moon = ovulation = “mother phase
  • 2nd phase: waxing moon = pre-menstrual phase = “sorceress phase” 
  • 3rd phase: Full moon = bleeding = “witch phase”
  • 4th phase: Waning moon = end of bleeding = “virgin phase” 

According to some myths, all those who fall into this category are said to be rebels and unpredictable. In addition, women in the red cycle are often considered “healers” who can pass on a lot of energy to others.

What can we take away from this?

It is one thing just to know roughly when you are bleeding, and meanwhile take for granted all the different moods you go through. However, a completely different, much deeper experience can be reached by acquiring an awareness of how the body and the environment relate to each other.

Every human state of mind can be dealt with better and more sensibly if you can classify it. When you feel sad, you should ask yourself: What is the origin of this feeling? Then you can allow it, feel it and endure it – without simply pushing it away from you. And you can do the same with your period. You ask yourself: Why do I feel so powerless right now? Why do I feel a strong need to isolate myself and have time to myself? To then come to the answer that you may be just about to have your period – and the moon has reached its lowest energy point.

You may be surprised at the impact this awareness can have on you in the future if you allow it. Perhaps you will experience and radiate your feminine energy on a whole different level. And it is an incredibly powerful feeling to know that you are the owner of your mind and body.

moon cycle, menstrual cycle

Nicole

About Nicole

Until the age of 29, Nicole was on hormonal birth control. While she was backpacking, she got inspired by different women to think about her cycle. She started an intense journey into herself that made her become a yoga teacher in India. Today Nicole lives in Berlin as natural as possible. She writes for sustainable brands and about topics she loves, whilst teaching yoga to help other humans and herself to find inner balance.

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