What is a Total Solar Eclipse? by Thia
A solar eclipse happens when the Sun, Moon and Earth are all exactly lined up. It only occurs during a new moon, as that is when the Moon is between the Earth and the Sun. Another factor that influences the eclipse is where the Earth and Moon are in their elliptical orbit. When the Moon is closer to the Earth or the Earth is farthest from the Sun in its orbit, the Moon appears larger than the Sun and completely blocks out the Sun. In a total solar eclipse all you see is the corona of light around the Sun.
On the other hand, if the Earth is closer to the Sun or farther from the Moon, you will see the Moon fit just inside the Sun. This is called an Annular Eclipse.
The Magic of Eclipses
A partial eclipse happens every 6 months or so, but a total eclipse only happens every 18 months. Therefore, this is a special time to work magic because it doesn’t happen all that often. There are lots of ways to work with the power of an Eclipse. Let’s break down a few of them.
Working with the New Moon
An eclipse only happens during a new moon, so you are working with new moon energy.
1. The new moon is a good time to sit in the void. It is a time where energy is still. You can release all that has happened in the past and find peace in the stillness. There are about 2 minutes where the Sun is completely blocked by the Moon. Use this time to feel stillness, quiet and balance.
2. You can use the new moon to release the past. The full lunar cycle has just completed. Review what has been happening in your life. If there are behaviors or results that don’t empower you, let them go. Release them as the old cycle comes to a close.
3. Because the new lunar cycle hasn’t started yet, you can use this time to set and focus your intention for something new. It is a good time for creating new futures, starting projects, setting goals, looking for new jobs, and so forth.
Here is a way you can combine all of those energies.
- As the Moon moves across the Sun and begins to block out the Sun’s light, think about those things you would like to release. Feel them pass from your life, like the Moon is passing in front of the Sun. The past is obscured and fades from existence.
- Once the Moon is fully blocking the Sun. Be still. Be complete. Tune into your breath and your heartbeat.
- Once the Moon passes and the Sun begins to reappear, think about what you want to bring into the light. What new thoughts, feelings, emotions, and energies are you bringing into being. Allow them to be revealed and gain in power as more and more light becomes visible. You can use this image to help you visualize the phases.
A Solar eclipse used to be called the Alchemical Wedding, where the Sun and Moon are wed in perfect balance. Therefore, you can use this time to bring balance to your life. You can balance your male and female energies, your physical and psychic power, the driving and the resting parts of your life. If you feel out of balance, like you have been working too hard, or thinking too much (Sun energy), use this time to balance that with stillness, meditation, intuition and quiet (Moon energy).
During the eclipse the sun and the moon are in the same zodiac sign. So the energies of the particular zodiac sign are multiplied. This solar eclipse happens in the time of Leo, specifically very near the brightest star in the Leo Constellation, Regulus, the heart of the Lion. The energy is independent, proud, confident, brave, and forthright. The down side to Leo energy is that it can also be militant and violent. The solar eclipse with Regulus infers power, success, authority, influence, honor and wealth.
The other influence is Uranus – the planet of change and excitement. The excitement of Uranus will bring enthusiasm and can bring additional energy to positive change and success. If you combine the strength of the Regulus star in Leo and the enthusiasm of Uranus you can end up with a long-term growth and happiness.
Spellcasting During an Eclipse
An eclipse is an interesting time to cast spells. The light from the sun seems to go through an entire solar year in a matter of hours. In this case, from the brightness of Summer to the waning of Autumn, the dark of Winter and the renewal of Spring. The moon’s energy goes through the cycle of an entire day from twilight, to darkness to dawn. This is very powerful energy and it happens very quickly.
If you are going to raise energy, you need to be able to do it very quickly, and you need to be able to hold a lot of energy. Working with that much shifting energy can lead to unpredictable outcomes, and it can be really hard to ground yourself afterwards. Therefore, some people recommend that unless you are an advanced practitioner, you spend the time of the eclipse in contemplation, meditation and gratitude rather than working with the energy. Another option is to create ritual honoring the Sun, the Moon and the beautiful shifting dance they engage in throughout time.
If you are going to spell cast, you can fine tune your spells by keeping in mind where the sun and moon are in their cycles. The sun is just off its strongest time. It is starting to wane, but it is still quite powerful. The moon is at rest. It is at its most calm.
Viewing the Eclipse - 21st August 2017
This eclipse is primarily centered in North America. Friends in Europe, Japan and Oceana will not have the pleasure of being in the midst of it, but the energy is still accessible. For the UK, you will only see 2 – 5% obscuration around 6:40PM. You don’t need to be in the midst of the eclipse to access the energy of the “Alchemical Wedding.” We are all guests at the wedding after all. If you want to see how and when this eclipse will be visible where you are, you can go to https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/eclipse-maps to see the trajectory of the eclipse and see how close you are to the area of totality.
You never want to look directly at the sun without appropriate protection. Looking at the Sun, even when it is 90% obscured can severely hurt your eyes. However, there are many ways to safely view an eclipse of the sun including direct viewing – which requires some type of filtering device and indirect viewing where you project an image of the sun onto a screen. Both methods should produce clear images of the partial phase of an eclipse. Follow this link https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety for eclipse viewing techniques and safety.
During totality, the area inside the moon's shadow is cloaked in twilight. Just before and just after totality, you can see the cloak of darkness moving across the landscape, and then moving away.
The Sun is roughly 400x larger than the moon, but it is also 400x further away so the two bodies appear approximately the same size in the sky. However, the moon's orbit around the Earth is elliptical, so it is sometimes closer to the Earth than others and thus, appears larger and smaller respectively. Likewise, the Earth's orbit around the Sun is elliptical so that at some points in its orbit, the Sun appears larger than others.