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Void of Course Moon

I’m on a mission to change the way folks think about the Void of Course Moon. Because Void Moons are cool.

Full disclosure. I was banned from talking about Void Moons by a popular horoscope publisher for which I wrote. Not once, but twice.

The reasoning: folks who follow horoscopes aren’t sophisticated enough to understand what a Void Moon is. Ergo, best to ignore it.

Now that I’m the managing editor of Astrology Hub, I say we talk about them. Because I believe you’ll understand just fine.

And, by the time I’m done, maybe you’ll realize how they can help you. And then you’ll love them too.

Our Magical Moon

So let’s start at the beginning. Back in 200 BCE or so when the Hellenistic Greeks were inventing “horoscopic” astrology, planets, signs and houses didn’t mean exactly the same things that modern astrologers are familiar with today.

The planets were Gods. Or at least, they were avatars of the gods. According philosophers such as Plato (remember him, the fellow who wrote The Republic?), it was the planets’ job to spin out Time. They set the meter and rhythm for the dance that creates Nature in all its forms.

Of these seven “Celestial Governors” (the Greeks of course could only see seven — the Sun, Moon and the five visible planets – Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn), it was the Moon that was seen as the most Earth-like. In fact the entire natural world was also called the “sub-Lunar realm.”

Consequently, one of the Moon’s jobs was to serve as emissary for all the other planets.  Since she produced no light of her own, she helped the other planets carry their light down to the physical plane. In so doing, heavenly will was made manifest. (Truly, the mistress of magic she was!)

When those early Greek astrology innovators envisioned a system of 12 houses, each of the seven  planets took their “joy” in one of them. The Moon’s Joy was the Third house  — which became known as the “House of the Moon Goddess.”

(And here you probably thought that the Third House was the house of messages and messengers because of Mercury (or Gemini). Nope. It’s because it’s the Moon’s Joy.  If you’re eager to delve deeper into the planetary joys, I suggest Chris Brennan’s recent scholarly paper on the subject.)

What’s a Void of Course?

There’s a reason for all this backstory. It’s to help you understand what a Void Moon actually represents.

So, let’s imagine the Moon performing her duties, pouring the planetary rays down to the Earth. She makes a trip around the solar Zodiac every 27 -1/4 days (called a sidereal month). That means approximately every 2- 1/3 days she enters a new Zodiac sign.

Galadriel, Queen of the Elves in Lord of the Rings, captures the essence of the Moon.

Galadriel, Queen of the Elves in Lord of the Rings, captures the essence of the Moon.

Along her trek across a sign, Luna aligns with some of the other planets. Astrologers call these aspects, which derives from a Latin word that means “to see” or “to behold.”  The aspects they believed most aligned with the perfectly mathematical symmetries of the divine mind are conjunctions, sextiles, squares, trines and oppositions; we call these Ptolemaic aspects.

Once the Moon has made the last Ptolemaic aspect to a visible planet within a Zodiac sign, she’s called “Void of Course.” She’s traveling along with an empty mail bag, so to speak, with no other heavenly missives to deliver — until she enters the next sign that is.

So, the Moon turns Void of Course once every 2-1/4 days. Void periods of a few minutes to a few hours are not uncommon. Void Moons of a half-day or more are rare. The longest Void Moon I’ve ever seen was almost 48 hours  — we may only see a few of those a decade.

Why You Should Care

Void of Course Moons (that’s VC for short) are marked on astrological calendars for a reason.

If you have a magical bone in your body, you’ll want to pay attention.

Since the planets’ light is what gives Divine “Oomphiness” to creation, a Void Moon is akin to a celestial lacuna. A trough between the waves on the cosmic ocean.

In a sense, Void Moons are like the Moon’s equivalent of a retrograde. Of course, the Moon can’t actually retrograde. (It would be a very bad day for all earthlings if it did.) But it carries a similar tone — one of Nature’s built-in times for reflection and consideration.

By now I hope you can see where I’m going with this…

Traditionally speaking, Void Moon’s are a lousy time to make magic. That’s because your undertaking won’t get the usual energetic boost from the Moon’s translated planetary light.  Workings tend to fizzle before coming to fruition. They just run out of gas.

By modern analogy, that means Void Moons aren’t the optimal time for starting a new project. A new relationship. A new anything really.

However, Void Moons are an excellent opportunity to do some Deep Work. Without the typical frenetic planetary buzz, things are just a little quieter.  You can spend hours working on one of your existing projects with fewer distractions.

Void Moons are also amazing times to commune with the deeper forces of the psyche. Energies turn inward toward the movements of soul and spirit. We meditate. Float. Or just sleep and rejuvenate.

See, what did I tell you? Void Moons are cool.

How to Find Void of Course Moon Times

I mark all the really long Void Moons on my own calendar. I know my phone will ring less, and my inbox won’t fill up quite so fast.  Therefore, I can more easily slip away and get some amazingly productive work done on projects that require my undivided attention.

I bet you want to know when the next Void of Course Moon times are for yourself…

As I mentioned, most Astrological calendars will have them listed — including the Astrology Hub Planning Calendar. (Sign up for the Astrology Hub email newsletter, and it’s yours free.)

If you don’t have a calendar easily accessible, just Google “Void of Course Moon Tables” for the month or year you need. There will always be several websites with tables available.

And, yes, there’s an app for this, too. Several in fact. Search for “Void of Course Moon app” and see what strikes your fancy. (Or, if folks leave a comment below, maybe I’ll write a post on my favorite Moon smartphone apps.)

So, have I changed your mind? See I told you — Void Moons are cool.


full moon essentials


About the author

Donna Woodwell

Donna Woodwell

Though Donna attended grad school to become a foreign correspondent, she had no idea how foreign she¹d get. After exploring ancient and modern magical and mystical practices for more than 20 years, today she uses astrology to help folks discover – and live – their unique genius. Donna¹s now Astrology Hub¹s Managing Editor.


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