Who hasn't been awed by the beauty of a full moon flooding over the horizon?
Folklore tells us that animals and criminals go wild during full moons, that werewolves make their transformation during the full moon - it's the time when Wiccans hold their monthly ritual, called the Esbat.
But what about sleep? Does the light of the full moon have any influence there?
Sleep and the Full Moon
I think the moon must be to blame:
It fills the room with fairy flame;
It paints the wall, it seems to pour
A dappled flood upon the floor.
Does the full moon affect our sleep? How about the cycles of the moon? Many disorders seem to follow the phases of the moon. Cluster eadaches and epilepsy often follow this cycle. Women's menstrual cycles tend to be very cyclic.
As for the full moon, a while ago, I received this letter from Maureen:
"Have you done any research on how the full moon affects sleep? I know of several people who just DON'T sleep on the night of the full moon and end up dreading the next one! If you have heard of this, or can point me in the direction of some articles relating to this problem, I'd really appreciate it."
There is no doubt the phases of the moon do have an effect on the mind. In fact, the Moon has influenced life and the mind of Man since the beginning of time. The cavemen thought the moon was a God, and it's depicted in many cave drawings. Many cultures, down through the ages, credited the moon with a great deal of influence. Even today, many of the New Age religions worship the Moon. Followers of astrology attribute a great deal of significance to the moon's cycles. And the Pagan/Wiccan religion, for instance, is very moon-oriented.
Shakespeare, in Midsummer Night's Dream, referred to the moon as "governess of the floods." An apt name, for the moon does control the ebb and flow of liquids, be it bodily fluids or the mighty rush of the ocean tides. According to the Bible, there is "a time to plant and a time to pluck up that which is planted." Many calendars and almanacs carry moon phase planting guides and even fishing guides.
With all these many links to the moon, it should come as no surprise that, when the moon is full, some people suffer from insomnia, others suffer from strange dreams and nightmares and some people sleepwalk. And others, for some reason, sleep better when the moon is full, even if it's shining on the bed through an open blind.
And, despite man's successes in conquering space, no matter how many footsteps mar the hills and valleys of her landscape, who can stand outdoors on a clear, crisp autumn night beneath the light of the full moon and not be in awe of her beauty and her mystery? Or, perhaps, like rock idol Ozzy Osbourne, felt a desire to Bark at the Moon.
Howling in shadows
Living in a lunar spell
He finds his heaven
Spewing from the mouth of hell
Published On: June 08, 2007