I’ve been working with the waxing and waning lunar cycles for nearly 20 years now; starting out with following the moon phases, and then weaving in the astrological signs and houses. Over that time my practice has changed and evolved and I’m feeling ready to pass on what I know in the hope it will be helpful.
Make a point of knowing which phase the moon is in as she waxes and wanes. You can record this in your magical journal/ book of shadows/ bullet journal – whatever you use.
You can use a special almanac or diary which shows the phases every day, to support you in this practice, but nothing beats actually getting outside, or by a window, and seeing the moon for yourself. Different phases are visible at different times. I’ll go into this more in another post perhaps.
Also note how you feel at different phases. Are you more outgoing at full moon? Do you dream more when the moon is in a certain phase (or sign, if you’re working with astrology already).
I do this on full and new/ dark moon, and usually also a little something on the quarter moons too. This can be as simple as a ritual bath with salt and candles every dark moon. Or as elaborate as a group meet up for drumming, chanting, trancework and partying on the full moon.
Add these to step 1. Note how your rituals feel. Perhaps try the same ritual on a different phase. How does that change things?
If you’re already familiar with spell work then you can tweak things a little to sync your spells with the moon (and if you’re not casting yet, simple spells corresponding with the moon phases is a great place to start).
The general rule is, from new to full ie. the waxing (getting bigger) moon, you cast for things you want to grow bigger. For example, financial abundance, love, promotions at work etc.
Then from full to new ie. the waning (getting smaller) moon, you cast for things you want to get smaller/ go away. For example, illness, weight loss, bad habits, annoying people etc.
Try things. See how they feel. Try different things. Does divination work better for you at certain phases? Do you have more energy for spell work at certain phases?
If you have a bleeding cycle, how does your internal moon phase sync, or not, with the external moon phase?
Read and learn more about working with the phases. You might like to add working with the astrological signs and houses into your practice. Perhaps a different aspect is calling to you. As with all parts of the craft, continue to learn and grow. How we relate to the moon can wax and wane as we get older too. Stay curious.
I’ve uploaded a video about how to start working with the cycles over on my YouTube. So if you prefer your info in video form you can find that here. It also includes the resources I like to use and more info I couldn’t fit into this post.
ENDNOTE: I know this is a simplistic overview of a HUGE topic. I hope it makes sense and is helpful, but I’m conscious there is so much more to cover. If you have any questions please ask.
What would you like to know about working with the moon? How do you already tune into the moon in your practice?