The Moon card rules the unconscious plane and brings matters which are clandestine to the surface. As mistress of the unseen realms the Moon symbolises illicit affairs, treachery, the undercurrents of the subconscious mind, plots, the ebb and flow of the creative spirit, psychological disturbances, the tides of the sea, and hormonal imbalances. Where the fullness of the light of the Moon shines, those things which we seek to hide and those which are hidden from us are revealed just enough for us to catch a glimpse of them. In this way we are invited to confront deception whether we are its authors or victims.
This card is numbered 18 and according to the principles of numerology the number 1 signifies personal power and self actualisation, whereas the number 8 speaks of power and its struggles. The sum of these digits is 9 and the number 9 is said to indicate the beginning of a new chapter in life. From this we can interpret that the Moon card invites us to transform, and realise our personal power through the revelations of an emotionally turbulent event. The Moon card is astrologically connected with the moon as its namesake would imply, but it is also allied with the sign of Pisces. Pisces is associated with the twelfth house of the astrological wheel which governs the unconscious mind, healing crises, invisible enemies, service to humanitarian causes, isolation, and sorrow. All these themes are relevant when the Moon appears in a reading.
In the Rider Waite deck two dogs are shown baying at the taciturn moon, as though they are urging her to reveal her secrets. Unnoticed, a lobster emerges from a pool of water and makes its way unhindered on the path between the two dogs. This imagery indicates that while your attention might be focused on the wrong issue, other plots and schemes are brewing which have escaped your attention and they may originate from where you least expect them. The image of the lobster is indicative of growth, forcing one to shed their former self as lobsters shed their exoskeleton in order to facilitate a growth spurt. This does not come without its drawbacks however, as until their new armour is grown, they are in a state of vulnerability. In this way the Moon card also suggests that the querent may be at a disadvantage in some way and it would be wise for them to stay alert. The seemingly frenzied activity of the two dogs symbolises madness and delusion and the very word "lunatic" stems from the Latin for moon, which is Luna. In this way the Moon card is also intrinsically linked with mental disorders and delusional thinking. Either the querent is prone to disordered thinking or their person of interest has a depressive nature.
Generally when the Moon appears, you are being forewarned that all is not as it seems. Those closest to you may not have your best interests at heart and you ought to be alert and aware to any and all possibilities. The light which the moon shines is not direct and bright like that of the Sun card and the truth of situations and people are only partially revealed. If you are a creative person or work in the creative field, the Moon can symbolise a burst of intuition and fresh projects. The caveat with this, however, is that these projects are in a gestational period and require further work to bring them to fruition. The Moon can also earmark travel over water or overseas in some contexts.
In a love reading the Moon card frequently appears to reveal an affair. Either you are planning to have an affair, your partner is having an affair, or your person of interest has other interests of which you are unaware. It can also represent that your partner has secrets or a hidden agenda which they would prefer you did not discover and in this vein there is a sense that the "wool is being pulled over your eyes" in some way. Self delusion and Nelsonian blindness are also possibilities with this card and perhaps you are purposefully ignoring glaring pitfalls in front of you. More benignly, the Moon can hint that you or your partner are feeling somewhat adrift and are prone to dark moods and may need therapy. In terms of feelings the Moon card can indicate that your person of interest has unsure feelings about you or senses that you are not straightforward or trustworthy.
In a work or career reading, the Moon is a most foreboding omen. It symbolises that your business associates or allies are not what they appear to be and wish to see you fail. It can suggest that there are those who would wish to gain your confidence in order to profit from your know-how and later betray you. Another possibility is illegal activity or a company not being entirely above board with their accounting and dealings. Wishful thinking is also suggested by the Moon and perhaps you do not have the requisite knowledge to run a business or your plans are a little far fetched or over ambitious. Make sure you have the real world practical skills to bring your objectives into reality. If you are working for a company, it does not say that you will necessarily fail or succeed, but that the situation is subject to change and matters behind the scenes are very much in flux. All in all, the Moon card in a career context is a "wait and see" card; things are not fully clear and the outcome is not definite.
Timing: Timing is dependent on placement within a spread. However, the moon requires one month to complete a cycle and so the timing of one month can be appropriate. Pisces season may also be appropriate.
Major Arcana: Card 18
Astrological Correspondences: Pisces and Moon, 12th house of the astrological wheel
Positive Aspects: intuition, creativity, travel over water
Negative Aspects: betrayal, treachery, false friends, infidelity, disingenuous behaviour, delusional thinking, willful blindness to danger, lack of experience, illegal activity