by guest blogger Nan De Grove

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The Full Moon of October is sometimes called the Wine Moon, the Hunter’s Moon, or the Blood Moon. According to the ancient Druid tradition it is the Ivy Moon. In the Celtic imagination trees and plants were seen as portals into a parallel world of magic and meaning. Each month had its sacred tree or plant, and the prophetic powers and healing gifts of the tree or plant were especially potent at the Full Moon. The ivy month goes from September 30th to October 27th. Ivy conjures up images of sacred places, and haunted ones too: old churches and monastery ruins, graveyards. Because it grows in a spiral pattern it is associated with the labyrinth, the wandering path of the soul as we find and lose our way again and again in our earthly journey. The Ivy Moon leads into the last three months of the year with their increasing emphasis on the spirit world and the need to turn inward as the nights grow longer.

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Ivy speaks of humility, growing as it often does, in hidden, forsaken spots. As an evergreen, it holds fast against snows and brightens winter walls and gardens. In the language of flowers, ivy stands for fidelity, friendship and marriage. In ancient Greece it was, like the grape, associated with Dionysus, and the theme of death and resurrection. With its trefoil leaf, Ivy is also an emblem of the holy trinity.

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The Full Ivy Moon, which occurs on October 8 at 4:51 a.m. MDT, falls in Aries, with the Sun in Libra. and is also a lunar eclipse. Eclipses are sacred interludes in which the forces of body, soul, and spirit are realigned and renewed. Eclipse times can be turbulent and unstable as old patterns can break down suddenly. The Libra—Aries polarity emphasizes the balance between individual needs and the demands of social and personal relationships. The Ivy Moon draws our attention to the pathways and thresholds that are opening before us, as well as the doors that close gently behind us,sometimes without our noticing. It asks too, where, like ivy, we might be too tightly bound, where we need to free our spirits and venture into new territory as the months (moons) of autumn draw us into the heart of the labyrinth.

Nan De Grove is a gardener, painter and astrologer. She can be reached at ndegrove@aol.com.</strong

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