Moon Magic: A Beginner Crash Course in Lunar Witchcraft

Moon magic intertwines itself so deeply with modern spell craft, some people think they mean the same thing.

But moon magic is actually a highly specialized form of witchcraft.  Not all practitioners use it in the same way—or at all. 

So what is moon magic?

It’s not so much a kind of witchcraft as it is an archetype of magic. 

Our ancestors recognized the moon’s magical powers almost universally in cultures throughout the world and throughout history.  It comes in many forms and takes its place in many spiritual traditions differently.  But essentially:

Moon magic is the use of the lunar energy and moon cycles to empower spell craft.

You probably know that magical practitioners often use the full moon as a common time for spell work and rituals.  Because the moon is at the height of its metaphysical powers, it’s easy to harness it for your intended purpose.

But all phases of the moon offer strategic advantages depending on the type of spellwork you want to do.

Using Lunar Phases in Witchcraft

Every phase presents an opportunity for enhanced spell work if you know how to work with them.

Like fighting against an ocean tide, fighting the energy of the moon in lunar magic is a losing battle.

Working against these phases does not, of course, guarantee failure—just as working with them doesn’t guarantee success.

But it makes it a lot easier.

We’re going to talk in-depth about how to do this, but first, here’s a quick cheat sheet:

Creating a Moon Altar

Creating a moon altar is a powerful way to stay connected to the lunar cycles.

If you want to get in touch with the lunar cycles more deeply, consider starting with the creation of a moon altar.

Moon altars help you to stay focused on each phase of the moon, and learn to turn your personal energy to its cycles.

Moon altars are especially nice in the bedroom, where you likely spend the most time soaking up moon energy.

Some things to consider putting on your moon altar:


-Goddess statuary


-The Moon tarot card

-Your dream journal

Dark Moon

Most commonly used as a time for divination, honoring ancestors and dream work, the dark moon phase is all about the unconscious mind.

Use this phase to delve deeply into your inner thoughts.

Meditate, reflect on your path and turn inwards.  Take a hot ritual bath and simmer your soul, or get a deep-tissue massage to remove built up trauma.

Here are some magical activities to try during the dark moon:

Dream Work for Beginners

DIY Dream Spell Jar

-How to Banish Drama During the Dark Moon

-Spell to Break a Bad Habit

-10 Ways to Use Divination During the Dark Moon

Dark Moon Dream Salve DIY

The Ancient Art of Bone Reading for Beginners

The One Card Tarot Draw:  9 Ways to Read It

Waxing Moon

Go ahead!  Cast a spell for attraction, love, money-drawing, luck or financial success.

The waxing moon ushers in a time of abundance.  Like riding an ocean wave inland, this moon phase’s energy makes it much easier to get where you want to go.

10 Ways to Use the Waxing Moon in Witchcraft

-Glamour Spells:  10 Magical Beauty Spell Ideas

-Love Goddess Spell Poppet Tutorial

Full Moon

Learn the power and magic of the moon cycles and their uses in modern witchcraft.

Generally speaking, most practitioners of moon magic find themselves busiest during the 3 nights of the fullest portion of moonlight (the day before, the day of, and the day after the full moon).

The moon pulses with magical energy at this time, making it an ideal opportunity for lunar magic.

Save your wishing spells, paranormal investigations, power magic and healing rituals for this time.  

Here are some magical ideas to try during the full moon:

The Witch’s Guide to Paranormal Investigations

-Moon Circle Spell Scrolls

-Full Moon Incense Recipe

-10 Kid-Friendly Ways to Celebrate the Full Moon

-Witch Bottles:  The Art of Spell Craft in a Jar

Waning Moon

Learn the phases of the moon and their use in spells, magick and witchcraft.

Release, release, release.

Use the waning moon to cleanse, eliminate and move on from things that no longer serve you.

Clear negativity from your life and promote a renewed sense of well-being. 

Here are some magical ideas to try during the waning moon.

Into the River:  An Introduction to Ritual Purification 

-10 Ways to Clear Negative Energy From Your Sacred Space

-Smokeless Energy Clearing Spray

-How to Banish a Toxic Friendship

All Moon Phases

During all lunar phases, the following activities are appropriate:

-Pay close attention to the current phase.  How do you feel standing under the moon right now?  Tired, energized, thoughtful?  The more you pay attention to the moon, the more you connect your emotions and sensitivities to its cycles.

-Make notes in your journal or Book of Shadows about your current moon work.  Document your progress in working with the moon and make it an ongoing process.

-For each phase, devote at least one night per quarter to sitting outside under the full moon.  Using an approach of mindfulness, stay in the present moment and focus on the meaning of the current moment in the lunar cycle.

Consider the month and season.

In order to more fully utilize the energy of the moon, consider that specific month’s moon and its meaning in your own folkloric tradition.

Many folk magic traditions recognize any given monthly moon for its spiritual properties.

For example, if you practice Celtic witchcraft, consider the meaning of each lunar cycle according to the lore of your tradition.

In my own practice, I like to make tea using seasonal ingredients, like this Rose Moon Milk with Cherries and Ginger.

Developing a Relationship with the Lunar Cycles.

The serenity of working in harmony with celestial bodies revitalizes the spirit and quiets the mind.

Learning to work with these phases is ultimately about learning to live in harmony with nature and its endless cycles.

When you synch not only your magic, but your mundane life, with these phases, the effort lends power to your spell craft. 

Here’s some examples of how to begin transitioning to a more moon-centric life. 

-Planning to start your weight loss journey?  Begin it on the first day of the waning moon.  Notice that as you pay attention to the decreasing size of the moonlight, you more easily overcome the mental hurdles of decreasing your own size.

-Want to start saving money for your next vacation?  Open a savings account on the first day of the waxing moon.

-Need insight into a difficult relationship?  Meditate on it underneath the dark moon to gain perspective.

-Hoping that a project you’ve been working on for a while finally pays off?  Try to schedule major events for around the full moon.

The magic of celestial witchcraft.

Instead of getting overwhelmed by all the ideas above, try experimenting with one or two to start.

If you already use the moon phases regularly to enhance your spells, then use them to enrich your practice or gain new insight to break free from a spell crafting rut.

Blessed be.

Moon magic lunar phase cheat sheet.

Moody Moons School of Metaphysical Arts offers online courses in magical herbalism, beginning witchcraft, potion making and more!

Moon Magic: A Beginner's Guide to Lunar Witchcraft, Spells and Magic


  1. Hi! No idea if anyone will see this. I was looking for a forum which I thought was here somewhere.

    Wondering which is a more important consideration when planning the timing of a spell—best moon phase vs. best day of the week.

    Say for a love spell, Friday is best, but if Friday falls on a new moon, is it best to wait for a Friday in a more favorable moon phase?

    Or a dark spell, best on a new moon but the new moon falls on a Friday, is it best to wait until the next new moon?

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