What does the Moon mean to an Atheopagan?
Well, to this one, at least, the Moon is the bringer of “magic light”. Low light conditions tend to damp down the activity of the pre-frontal cortex of the brain, enhancing the role of the limbic system in consciousness. In moonlight, we are more likely to feel attentive, emotional and alive in the Present moment rather than trailing off into our thoughts. The same is true of candlelight or firelight–though the flickering of flame is a different quality than the serene calmness of moonlight.
There’s a reason why gathering under the full Moon is associated with witches and Pagans. A landscape bathed in moonlight is otherworldly, beautiful, and mysterious. It’s a wonderful condition under which to do personal or group ritual.
Gazing up to the Moon’s scarred face is a reminder that we are on a planet, in the midst of an astronomical system. That bright light is a big ball of rock, orbiting around us and 200,000 miles away! We can tell the direction the Sun is, just by observing the illumination of its face. And, if so inclined, we can even contemplate the fact that we went there, forty-odd years ago. We left our world for another, for a brief moment. If you believe it is human destiny to move beyond Earth, that’s a thrilling thought.
I recommend getting out under the moonlight. Get a group together and go for a silent moonlit hike, or just sit in a yard or a park, and feel the cool tranquility of the Moon.