Mooning like a Lunatic over the Moon.
Monday has become one of the most dreaded days of the week (take that Friday the 13th!). Why don’t blue Mondays occur once in a blue Moon? Good tides and tidings to our capricious, delicious satellite of green cheese (maybe a blue cheese gone off), as it dances about us in its own time.
There are a few competing theories as to the Moon’s origin. I find the giant impact hypothesis the most compelling. Essentially, about 4 billion years ago, a body collided with Earth, ejecting a huge mass from what is now the Pacific Ocean, which became our Moon. The colliding body has been named Theia.
Monday’s Moon, the second brightest object in the sky (provided you’re not in the flight path of a downed communication satellite) at the Full Moon. It has long been observed, well beyond history, civilization and humanity, by the beasties in the ocean, who come up to spawn when its at its brightest. Sad to say that we have fallen out of rhythm with the Moon, maybe because our calendar doesn’t follow it, maybe because we are surrounded by artificial lights which dim our view of the skies. Nevertheless, it is still a fundamental means for us to measure the passing of the days, and with theAbysmal Calendar, we’ll pay closer attention from here on out. Deal?
The Moon takes 27 d 7 h 43.1 min to orbit the Earth, and about 29.53 days to go through its phases from New to Full and back again. Because of its synchronous orbit with Earth, we only see the one side. The Dark Side of the Moon is an interesting phenomenon linked to the occult, and Pink Floyd. Also, because the Moon appears to be of similar size to the Sun from Earth, solar eclipses are possible.
The effect the Moon’s gravity has on tides is particularly important in terms of biological cycles. The tidal period is 12.4 hours, just a little more than half a day. Not that it matters. Fish don’t wear wristwatches.
So the Moon brings us Monday. Where did the O go? Maybe it got together with the N from Saturday. NO?
Cycles of the Moon
The 12.4-hour tidal period, the 29.53-day synodic period, the 19-year Metonic cycle, 76-year Callipic cycle and the 345-year Hipparchic cycle are the most important in terms of earthly and calendrical observation (less so with the Callipic & Hipparchic, but there they are).
The tides and lunar phases go without saying (unless you want to leave comments), however, the Metonic cycle is of interest, as it tries to find some means of tying the Day, the Lunation (Lunar Month) and the Year together. 19 years works out to be 235 Lunations or 6940 Days. The Lunations to Year isn’t quite exact, as it falls short by a few hours.
The Callipic cycle is a little more accurate. Callippus multiplied the Metonic cycle by 4, which brings the Years and Lunations closer: 76 Years, 940 Lunations, or 27,759 Days. Although, it isn’t any more accurate, depending on how you do the math. The Moon continues to frustrate these poor integer-seeking stargeezers.
Then our friend Hipparchus multiplied it by 4 yet again, and so we end up with: 304 years = 3760 lunations = 111035 days which is one day off from equal. That’s about as good as it gets in that respect. However, his cycle is properly: lunations (4267), anomalistic months (4573), years (345), and days (126007 + about 1 hour); it is also close to the number of draconic months (4630.53…), so it is an eclipse cycle.
Fortunately, theAbysmal Calendar doesn’t nearly this complicated, and besides, we’re talking about Weekdays here.
As with the Sun, there are numerous Lunar Deities. Too many to catalogue (well, for me it is, but fortunately, somebody else is on it). Often the deities or personification of the Moon is akin to the Sun, often siblings, sometimes parent-child.
Some of the more common Western deities, plus other widely recognized entities:
In many instances, the Moon is given a feminine persona, and the Sun a masculine one. This is not universal, and deities have been known to change their sex as it suits them.
As with the Sun, there are numerous stories that involve the Moon, so it is a challenge to narrow it down. The Moon is ever evasive.
What’s in a Name?
dies Lūnae, lunedì, segunda-feira, lunes, luni, lundi, luns, dilluns, llunes, lunis, Lunedi, Lundio, lundo, An Luan, Dé Luain, Di-Luain, dydd Llun, Dy’ Lun, Dilun, Jelune, E hënë, Mōnandæg, Mânetag, Montag, maandag, Moandei, mánadagr, mánadagur, mánudagur, mandag, måndag, maanantai, इन्दुवासरम्, सोमवार, සදුදා, सोमवार, সোমবার, پی, سوموار, ថ្ងៃចន្ទ, સોમવાર, ހޯމަ,திங்கட் கிழமை, సోమవారం, തിങ്കള്,ಸೋಮವಾರ, ວັນຈັນ, วันจันทร์, сумъяа, Soma, Coma, ਸੋਮਵਾਰ, 月曜日, 월요일, གཟའ་ཟླ་བ།, mánudagur, יום שני, feria secunda, Δευτέρα, Երկուշաբթի, (ngày) thứ hai, Isnin, يوم الإثنين, It-Tnejn, Senin, Senen, Senén, دوشنبه, pazartesi, ikinç kün, Damóo Biiskání, понедельник, Панядзелак, понедiлок, poniedziałek, pondelok, pondělí, pondělek, Ponedeljek, Ponedjeljak, Понедељак, понеделник, Pirmadienis, Pirmdiena, hétfő, esmaspäev, нэг дэх өдөр, Даваа, jumatatu, lur, astelehena, astelena
326 Days to Dec 21st 2012
- Moon Phases and Lunation Cycle (astrologyinhealth.wordpress.com)