Native American wisdom marries every full moon in a month with a specific feature in Nature. These moon associations will vary depending upon the tribe we are honoring. This month, January is deemed the Wolf Moon or Cold Moon by various tribes indigenous to the Great Lakes region of North America.
It’s been a tough month for some of us. I thought it fitting to toss out some symbolic observations about the January Wolf Moon with a goal to offer inspiration to folks facing some challenges right now.
Before blasting off into Wolf Moon symbolism, let’s take a look at lunar implications. Subtle, cunning and soft in silky shadows, the moons meanings can be slippery. But, to those who grasp moon symbolism, great insights follow. Typically feminine in archetypal understanding, the moon carries themes of cycles and fertility.
Moreover, the moon conveys a kind of creativity that is born from veiled magic. Consider the moon’s growth cycles (waxing, full, waning, new). These phases are wrought from the moon’s movement. And, the manifestation of her development is made known to us through light and shadow.
What’s the symbolic lesson here? Progress is sometimes subtle. Manifestations of evolution often occur behind the scenes, in shadow – before we “see the light” or the end-product of our vision.
When contemplating this month’s full moon and its partnership with the Wolf, we must not cram our intellect into the void. Rather, the Wolf Moon asks us to use intuitive instinct in soft ways.
The gifts of this full moon come to our senses like steam rising over sacred waters marbled with frosty stillness.
Wolf Symbolism & Wolf Moon Solutions:
Strategic, resourceful and incredibly communicative, the Wolf is a noble mentor for humankind. Wolves have specific protocol and rank within their packs. This observation is a cue to look to community for creative solutions during this full moon. Communicate with those in your pack to help you with your challenges. But don’t break taboo. If you follow specific traditions in social communication, hold to them. In fact, use this full moon to honor traditions of your heritage. Take time to honor your elders too. Tribal rituals should be heeded this time of year.
Wolves are vastly expressive. Sure, their vocalizations (baling, howling and barking) are legendary, but Wolves also have an complex system of body language and even eye contact to convey intent and current state of being. Discipline in the pack is rarely corporeal. Rather, behavior is admonished or reinforced by intricate expressions. One look from the Alpha can convey as much power as a physical blow.
There’s big medicine in this. Use this full moon to get in touch with your own modes of expression. Explore your own eye contact and body language. Examine yourself in the mirror (yes, I’m serious) as you’re talking on the phone. View yourself objectively. What are your expressions conveying? How can you modify or enhance your body language to portray more authority or power? Or, perhaps more softness and sensuality is needed. Too often we are unconscious about our eye and body movements in the scheme of social interaction. This is a great time to ponder these nuances of communication.
Wolves are also phenomenally resourceful. In fact, their resourcefulness is partly why this moon carries the Wolf moniker. January is a brutal month in the northern regions. The frigidity of winter crunches life to a stand-still in the wild. To be sure, it’s a time of “sink or swim” to all wildlife exposed to the elements this time of year.
Wolves, however, often thrive during this lean month. They are designed to handle the brutality of cold quite well. Furthermore, as Wolves are inclined to pick off weaker animals, January offers up a host of feasting options. Perhaps we can use the resourcefulness of the Wolf to reconsider our options in life. Maybe what seems bleak or lame in our life is actually an invitation for opportunity. Food for thought.
I hope these symbolic ideas about the cold Wolf Moon inspire you to take advantage of January’s lunar fullness. Take a pause on the evening of this month’s full moon to contemplate your own inner wisdom too. I bet your findings will be illuminating.
Other topics designed to inspire:
The image above was created by Avia Venefica using her moon photo, and a Wolf image from Dennis Matheson on Flickr (used with permission via Creative Commons).