Super Bloed Maan…

Super blood moon, it is, as expressed in Afrikaans or Super Igazi Inyanga, as in Zulu, two widely used languages of the country where I have just been privileged to witness the rare celestial event, the last of which was played out in 1982, when I was into the fifth year of my working life, and at the beginning of a life with my other best, thirty three years ago. The rarity of the event becomes all the more amplified, considering that the next such occurrence is only in the year 2033, when I may or may not be around. Like the super moon, which occurs when the moon is closest to earth in its orbit, the super blood moon presents itself in a reddish tinge, coinciding with a lunar eclipse leaving the moon in earth’s shadow. As the earth casts its shadows and sun’s light hits all around its limb, the atmosphere glows red, and the glow illuminates the surface of the moon, imparting the appearance of a fair and beautiful maiden bejewelled in platinum and touched up in rouge. In other words, super moon and lunar eclipse come together in the presentation of super blood moon. It is virtually the same, as a NASA scientist puts it, as seeing several sunrises and sunsets combined in reflection off the lunar surface. 
photo (3) photo (4) photo (5) photo (6)
The pic at bottom left showing the super blood moon is sourced, while the remaining ones depict the phenomenon as seen on the nights of 27th / 28th Sept 2015 from my place of stay in Johannesburg.
I waited keenly, in readiness with my iPhone, for the evening skies to open up into nightfall of September 27th – 28th. Contrary to indication, the moon did not carry any tinge of red, but was out in her benign fullness, silvery splendour, and platinum magnificence, very much in the demeanour of a coy bride walking, in pristine glory, down the heavenly aisle. Akin to the pages of an open book fluttering backward in a sudden gusty wind, my mind flew back to my school days in 1967, to Walter de la Mare’s unforgettable planet of the evening’s silver flame, “Slowly, silently, now the moon / Walks the night in her silver shoon; / This way, and that, she peers, and sees / Silver fruit upon silver trees; / One by one the casements catch / Her beams beneath the silvery thatch; / Couched in his kennel, like a log, / With paws of silver sleeps the dog; / From their shadowy cote the white breasts peep / Of doves in silver feathered sleep / A harvest mouse goes scampering by, / With silver claws, and silver eye; / And moveless fish in the water gleam, / By silver reeds in a silver stream”. 
 
The blood moon, as a description, has no standing in astronomy, as it is not a scientific term, even though it serves the purpose of offering a readily comprehensible definition of reddish hue seen on a super moon during lunar eclipse. It is heard mostly in the context of Biblical prophesies, as a phenomenon heralding the beginning of the apocalypse, stating that the sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood in the end time, predicting the second coming of Jesus around the autumn of 2015, apparently marking as it does, the end of seven years of great tribulation that reportedly began in the autumn of 2008. Other Abrahamic religions also fall in line with similar doomsday prophecies. The super blood moon, specially when it closely precedes, as in the instant case, the Martian Tuesday, the day of blood, is believed to be a sign of God’s anger, proclaiming that the ways of the world are not in line with divine doctrines and, therefore, to be taken as warning to promptly institute overdue corrections. 
 
In Vedic astrology, the present event is the final eclipse in a series of eclipses since Rahu and Ketu, part of ‘navagrahas’ or nine planets, otherwise known as the North and South nodes of the Moon, on which astrological calculations are based, have been in sidereal Virgo and Pisces over the last year. These eclipses have been unearthing the shadows of our subconscious drives towards the moods represented by these two signs. The Virgo mood compels us to organise the details of life and our material surroundings, to work hard and responsibly in order to avoid conflict, and to iron out imperfections in others and ourselves. Pisces, on the opposite side of the zodiac, urges us to let go of the material world and surrender to the unknown, embracing imagination and life’s mysteries, or, at times, slipping into escapism from life’s drudgery. The pull of these opposites and alignment of shadow planets with the sun, our inherent divine power, and the moon, our emotional fields, drives us to one or both of these extremes, causing distress around our desire to keep things materially organised, overly meticulous and responsible, or the Piscean extreme of giving in to the flow, to be more fluid in life’s waters, drifting into dreamy idealism. In the ensuing turbulence, chaos and confusion, the compelling direction is to integrate idealism with pragmatism, practical management of life’s concerns. The moonlight, as perceived, is actually the light of the sun being reflected off of the moon. The sun’s rays pass through earth’s atmosphere before reaching the moon and are refracted in many directions, which explains the visibility of the moon during lunar eclipse as sunlight is still reaching it through indirect scattered rays bouncing through the atmosphere and around the earth. This phenomenon corresponds to the astrological indication that eclipses often cause confusion, making us feel dissipated. It conjoins Ketu, described as the tail of a headless dragon, and represents the shadow of the earth as it eclipses the moon. Ketu dissolves the mind of all attachments and desires, offering a profound possibility of sudden awakenings and revelations of the highest order, igniting the fires of transformation, sparking a radical shift on both individual and collective level of our conscienceness. The super blood moon, thus, may not sound the last post pointing to end time, but affords an opportunity to sound the inner trumpet of awakening to claim one’s own redemption. The eclipse occurred in the area of the sky known as Uttara Bhadrapada, in the constellation of the ‘great square of Pegasus’. Known also as the warrior star, Uttara Bhadrapada is revered for its determined spiritual nature and fighting spirit. It probes deeply into the cycles of human suffering and negative aspects of nature, duly sublimating frustration and despair into wisdom and understanding, enhancing our capacity for compassion. In Sanskrit, Bhadra means blessed and pada stands for feet. The Bhadrapada are the four corners, or feet of the coffin that carries the soul through Pisces, the end of the zodiac. It is associated with fires of the funeral pyre, burning bodies to scorch away our impurities. 
 
Setting aside these beliefs and myths, the alarming state of the world, disquieting events in various regions, frenetically paced environmental degradations, and climatic patterns constant only in its variableness and unpredictability, constitute definitive indications of life going awry. The world may, in its complacency borne out of profound ignorance and misplaced arrogance, be coasting along in the mistaken notion that many of these beliefs and myths, devoid of rationale, cannot be pointing to any doomsday. There may not be a second coming of the Saviour or Messiah, appearance of Maitreya, or promised return of Krishna to re-establish dharma. But the almighty power residing in and permeating the cosmos can reduce everything to zilch within no time, at anytime. Astronomy speaks about thousands of asteroids of varying sizes, some of them several times larger than planet earth, orbiting the region of the solar system, located between the planets Mars and Jupiter, at mind-boggling velocities, closely zipping past planet earth within gaps of less than 200,000 miles, considered pretty close by astronomical evaluations. If any one of these mega, metal-rich asteroids suddenly turns delinquent and collides head on with earth at speeds of 37500 mph, planet earth may not be anything more than another cloud of dust afloat in the cosmos.
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58 thoughts on “Super Bloed Maan…

  1. Interesting how some people see this moon and interpret it as God’s anger when there could be a lot of other interpretations. I suspect the anger interpretation is motivated by a desire to scare and control people.

    I thought it was beautiful! (Too bad the US capital didn’t look a little better — wasn’t undergoing refurbishing — they should look at the lunar schedule before doing that again!)

    • Thanks Georgia, for your observations. The apocalyptic prophecies may, on the face of it, seem to be scary but they obviously are reflected in the way the world is hurtling towards destruction.

  2. From my view point, I was most impressed by how large ( close) the moon looked. It was gorgeous. We had a bit of cloudiness at first, but the whole sky glowed behind. Of course that’s my Pisces flow speaking 🙂 I enjoyed the dialogue between Pisces and Virgo as I’m a Pisces and my husband a Virgo.

    This has nothing to do with your wonderful article, Raj, but here is a true Pisces vs Virgo story.

    Pisces in passenger seat/Virgo driving
    Pisces: Oh, did you see the bunny on the side of the road?
    Virgo: What?
    Pisces: the bunny

    Car slams to halt..

  3. Excellent article! I’m seeing so many pictures of the moon since the day before yesterday, but nowhere there is such a vivid explanation from a myriad of perspectives. “Evening’s silver flame”- so beautifully the poet has described….thanks for sharing this article with us… 🙂

  4. Raj I too have see many photos of the moon over the past days but none with such eloquent narrative and explanation. Sending my best wishes and the hope that you shall see the moon again in 2033!

  5. Hi Raj,

    You have written a truly enlightening article as striking as the super moon! No wonder moon has been inspiring so many poets and lovers from times immemorial, it seems to possess a magical power.
    I have only heard about ‘blue moon’ and ‘red moon’, never seen it in reality. It is interesting to note that it affects us…again only read and heard about this phenomenon.
    Thanks for another terrific post and sharing those beautiful lines by Walter de la Mare’s, they virtually show the silvery light of the moon.

  6. Those are such beautiful photos of the moon, Raj. What a spectacular sight in the sky. Didn’t know Tuesday was the day of blood, and tying this all in with God’s anger is very interesting. The moon is such a mystical thing – it’s a planet but when we look up into the sky I think more often than not we see it as a star instead. I wonder if the fuller, rounded and brighter the moon, there are more forces watching over us.

    • The moon does affect us all, Mabel, and I share your sense of awe and wonder at the sight of the full moon, with her waxing and waning. Many thanks for dropping by…best wishes.

  7. A marvellously informative article Raj, for which many thanks. I have long been interested in the psychological effects that some claim to experience around the time of the new and full moons, and myself experience such effects quite notably. I once conducted a survey of the matter when I lived on the North Cornwall coast of England. Prior to the survey, and for a period of many years, I had always noticed the effects appearing between 3 and 5 days prior to the full moon, subsiding somewhat for around 10-20 hours of the full moon itself, then amplifying again for up to 3 days thereafter. The effects are the same, but less intense, around the new moon. What was very interesting was that there was a precise correlation between the intensity of the psychological effects and the tide variations on the coast where I was living. Anyway, here is an image of the Blood Moon as seen from the rear windows of my house on Saturday:

    http://www.theguardian.com/science/gallery/2015/sep/28/blood-moon-supermoon-rises-pictures-from-around-the-world#img-1

    All best wishes, and in gratitude,

    Hariod.

    • Thanks very much Hariod, for your take on the moon. The effects of the full moon on sea tides, and its waning thereafter is a scientifically established fact; also, in the good old days, fishermen used to experience improved landings during the full moon. The moon obviously affects humans as well, given the dominancy of water in our body chemistry. The moon inspires, and heightens lunacy as well. A special word of thanks for your moon pics; liked them all…best wishes.

  8. Very intriguing and informative. I enjoy your discussions on whatever it is that is happening as you write. You offer insightful and artful perspectives.
    The phenomena surrounding the moon are so fascinating.
    Thank you for your contribution to the discussion.

  9. A thought-provoking, eloquent discussion, Raj. I appreciate knowing a little more about your background, and appreciate the way you have interwoven poetry and spirituality together to describe the mysticism that surrounds earth’s lovely moon. I thought you might be interested in another cultural perspective.

    “Ceremonies are held in many [Native American] communities every full moon to honor Grandmother Moon and all of female life. It is held either on the Full Moon or two days before or after the Full Moon, depending on the teachings given to the women in a particular community. Women may gather in a circle, from the youngest to the oldest, representing the life journey from infancy to old age. They drum and sing. Water is prayed for and shared. Tobacco and cloth is placed in the fire, along with the sharing of feast food. The women pray for the cleansing of the earth, as the water, the lakes, rivers and oceans, constitute women’s responsibility. Their prayers are for continued life.” Source: http://unitingthreefiresagainstviolence.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Grandmother-Moon.pdf).

    The power of standing in a circle of Ojibwe women as Grandmother Moon rises in the evening sky, praying for the health of our sacred waters and earth, is transformative.

    • Meg witch Carol, for the fascinating perspective on Ojibwe culture. The more I learn about other communities around the world, the more I am struck by the similarities in practices and customs, unmistakably pointing to the oneness of it all. Ojibwe women forming circles in celebration is strongly reminiscent of Thiruvathira, the festival celebrated by women in Southern India to commemorate the birthday of Lord Shiva. Falling in the month of margazhi (December-January), the high point of the festivities is the song and dance by women extending through the night of the full moon into early hours of next morning. Shiva is the creator, and the universe is believed to have originated around 132 trillion years ago through his cosmic dance that permeates through every particle as dance of atoms therein, manifesting as energy that powers the cosmos.

  10. Wonderful informative post dear Raj.. along with your photo’s.. 🙂 I too was up at 2-30 am and watched the whole process.. It was awesome.. as they say 🙂 And for once here in the UK the skies were clear and gave us superb views of the eclipse…
    I agree with you Raj, many Earthly happenings will seem insignificant if we were to be reduces to dust.. In the mean time there are cabbages to grow and seeds to plant.. 🙂 As we enjoy ALL of our Now moments as we stand in Awe of the Moon and Sun and just how precisely we are placed to live on the wonderful Planet Earth..
    May others come to recognise Mother Earth’s Beauty and how ALL THINGS Connect.. Including our own emotional tides within the Moons cycles.. 🙂

    Have a wonderful weekend Raj..
    Blessings to you and Yours..
    Sue 🙂

  11. Very interesting post, Raj! I feel that conflict you are talking about; the dreamy aspect of my life is coasting, the pysical not so much, and I am struggling to pull it together 😊. The moon was very beautiful, and I was surprised that she still shone silver, I had expected that reddish tinge everyone had been talking about. Such a beautiful poem, too.

  12. Wonderful photos, Raj, and interesting information. Thanks for sharing with us! I took a few photos from my cell – which takes pretty good pics – bit it didn’t do the moon justice…in addition to your last paragraph, it seems like the world is coming to an end with all the horrific events and it’s so easy to fall into an anxiety state. That wouldn’t be healthy, though, so if everyone did their little part for our planet then maybe things would look more hopeful for future generations. As to the violence, it’s that old simple thought, “why can’t we all get along and agree to disagree?” In a perfect world, I suppose that could be…have a wonderful Monday!

  13. Thanks for your optimism, Lauren. A turnaround giving extended lease of life for planet earth may still be possible if everyone decides to live sustainably and in harmony with nature, towards which we can do our bit and hope for the best…best wishes.

  14. Hi Rajagopal,

    Great musings!

    Interestingly, I too was in S. Africa around those dates, though at a somewhat lower longitude than you, at cape Town! And what with the Cape of Good Hope in close proximity and the the table mountain protecting from the rear, all seemed well with the world, even on a ‘Super blood moon’ night!!

    Well that was in a lighter vein. The moon has of course given company and provided for countless flights of imagination right from the time the Homo Erectus gained the ability to stand tall. And in the night,as he sat around a fire and looked up at the moon. So I suppose the thoughts about the moon and it’s effect on our lives and well being go back over a million years. And as the moon waxed and waned, and as the tides came and went, so did our occurring change about what the moon stood for in our lives I suppose.

    Regards

    Shakti

  15. Thank you dear Raj for sharing your thoughts on the Super Blood Moon phenomenon! Frankly for me it was an education to read and understand its different interpretations. Your pictures patiently taken has been worth the effort for many of us who missed seeing it. Lets hope our people all around the world become more conscious of saving and protecting our planet ourselves and ward off any evil due to celestial happenings.

    Thanks and regards.

  16. Raj thank you for the stunning. Photos and intriguing text. I did not get to witness it here I don’t persoannaly read any biblical meaning into this remarkable cosmic phenomen Time will tell though we will probably have departed this world long beforehand .

  17. Raj!

    That poem! Oh, what beauty!

    I am printing it out to mail to a friend who called today from northern Wisconsin which is fairly close to the Canadian border (just to put it perspective for you).
    He said the moon was red and gold in northern Wisconsin and that a wind was whipping a thin trail of clouds over the moon’s face. He will love the poem.

    I feel like we are all living in tremulous times. Though some things have certainly improved in the United States during my life; one can’t help but see misery and shake one’s head at the greed and evil nature of some others. The juxtaposition of good and evil can be seen daily. I met a person on the street who did something incredibly kind for a complete stranger (that happened today), but then I turned on the television and saw someone torturing a little calf with an electric prodder.

    Joseph Campbell was an American that wrote about myth. Have you heard of him? He was a professor. He studied the world’s cultures and reported that many, many groups have the same traditional myths with unique characters to their ethnic group. He thought these myths were born in our consciences, else why would they be so similar? It is an interesting thought.

    Your friend,
    Ginene

    • Thanks very much dear Ginene; pleased to note my offering was interesting to you. Moral principles of good and evil, right and wrong, may have found their way into spiritually focused minds through intuitive connection with the cosmic power; myths and folklore must have originated in creative minds to illustrate the forces of good and evil and offer lessons in morality to the wider audience, guiding people towards right paths. Similarities in myths around the world, as rightly pointed out by Joseph Campbell, obviously arise from a commonality of purpose. I would love to reach out to Joseph Campbell’s book, if you can kindly recommend the title…regards and best wishes… Raj.

      • First published in 1949, “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” is probably Campbell’s most well-known and influential work. Check out http://www.gutenberg.us/article/whebn0000297239/the%20hero%20with%20a%20thousand%20faces.

        Another author I greatly appreciate, Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hahn, writes about Buddhism for those raised with other traditions. In particular, I enjoyed his book “Living Buddha, Living Christ,” which makes a connection between Christ’s teachings and those of Buddhism. Perhaps the “end of the world” is merely the end of the world as we know it.

        Recently, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” by Marie Kondo has been enjoying great success in Canada. I imagine this could be the Virgo influence of wanting to organise. It could, however, also indicate a change in Western values, as charitable second-hand stores profit from the donations that are being made. Perhaps we are awakening to the pleasures of a life less centred around material possessions, and more around others and relationships. Maybe this reflects the compassionate aspect of Pisces.

      • Thanks very much, Connie, for chipping in with details of Joseph Campbell’s book and the latest on Marie Kondo. Thich Naht Hahn’s writings on Buddhism and the Japanese flair for good order are well known. As you rightly observe, the urge to organise and transcend self may be at the centre of it all.

        Sent from my iPhone

        >

  18. Thanks Raj, for an interesting post. As you are aware we did not see this phenomena in Australia.
    As for biblical explanations they all sprung a leak in the Renaissance with Copernicus and Galileo’s telescope.
    The inquisition gave Galileo a hard time he was forced to back off.
    No one argued with the Pope back then.
    The believers of a patriarchal god would have barbequed him with all those witches.
    I can not understand how otherwise intelligent kind caring people can still believe in this rubbish.
    Is it the bribe of eternal life or the fear of a self proclaimed jealous vengeful god. _/\_

    • Most certainly, Jack, the intelligentsia was either taken for a ride, or allowed itself to be browbeaten, succumbing to threats of 13th century papal regime. And so it continues into present times, with as much doctrinal intensity, in various parts of the world. The positive differentiator now is that there is a growing constituency unwilling to buy all that garbage and stoutly resisting it. I have lost respect for these organised religions and beliefs since a long time ago. One is really better off without it. Some of these religions have cleverly expanded their portfolio to include charity and community services, using it as a subtle camouflage to advance their beliefs. Thanks for dropping by…

      • It is nice to feel able to stamp our feet without offending. Their are so many kind sincere misguided people. They are not bad it is what they are contaminated with that is evil. I am reluctant to be as straight forward with everyone as with my comment to you.
        We may have no respect but not let it disturb our peace of mind.
        To change our world we start with the world in our immediate vicinity.
        You see the picture clearly Raj _/\_

  19. We didn’t get to see the blood moon due to the time difference in the Southern Hemisphere. The photos I’ve seen are beautiful and hard to align this magnificent phenomena in a negative context. I’m not one for Armageddon or the “world is ending” thinking yet I do believe the world is experiencing a huge shift, almost a cleansing. The way it is happening is not ideal but it is propelling us towards some force we cannot slow or control.
    Loved the post, Raj. Enjoy your Sunday 😀 xx

  20. Beautiful post Raj. I love the moon always fascinate me. I like to gaze at her. I went in a field where I usually go hike to be able to see the full beauty of this extremely fascinating eclipse event. Like you, I was with my phone, waiting the best time to capture some photos, but clouds were around that night here in California. I was a bit disappointed since here usually the sky is super clear without any clouds like was the night before. So it wasn’t too easy to take some good photos but I have been able to see for few minutes the eclipse…sky did clear later on after, and the moon was amazingly big and close. I also saw something very beautiful all around the Moon there were an “Aura” of light riflected having a reddish colored ring all around I wish I could have taken a photo of that…Best wishes to you Raj I always love your visits to my Blog and comments 🙂

  21. Raj as others have said here, I have seen many photos and posts about the moon over the past while but none with such detail as yours. I had no idea about it signalling God’s anger of apocalyptic proportions! The third photo is a stunner and if I read correctly that one is yours. Brilliant!

  22. What i feel is whatever will happen, will happen. And, i think it will be for good. We are growing by leaps and bounds and one day it all has to stop…mother earth/nature will not take it a bit beyond a point!

    Nice phenomena though…good to lean about it.

  23. Dear Raj …you always enlighten with your subject matter …thankyou especially for this as I am a moon child in my heart …and nature whispers to me like it does with you …p.s. your writing creates such a beautiful flow so enjoyable . love , megxxx

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