What is the ‘Wolf Moon’?

The lunar cycle is very mystical and fascinating. Tomorrow is the first full moon of 2017! In India, we call the day of the full moon, Poon Mashi. It’s considered to be a very powerful time of the month, particularly in eastern cultures – which is why my family, and other Indian families, go to the temple to pay their respects and celebrate the full moon.

Monthly moon names 

According to Native American readings, the January full moon is often called the ‘Wolf Moon’, although it can be also called the ‘Old Moon’, depending on different tribes.  

Why was it called the ‘Wolf Moon’, I hear you say… think about cold landscapes with tiny Native American villages lighting fires to keep the young warm. Not to far from the villages walk wolves, hungry for prey, howling at the moon, searching for food. January was likely to be a winter month where wolves were howling a lot because they couldn’t find enough food to eat – by association, it was named the ‘Wolf Moon’.  

Why did Native Americans name the moons? 

The same way we name the months, January, February, March… Native Americans named the moons to keep track of the months and seasons. Early tribes, did not use the calendars we use today, like the Gregorian calendar, so naming the lunar cycles and full moons was their way of keeping track. As certain tribes kept track in different ways and were in different locations, names and dates would have varied tribe to tribe.

I find the lunar cycles and full moons so interesting and have decided to post a monthly blog on the different moon names and their origins – they are so fascinating and I would love to share this beautiful knowledge with you!


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