Moon Phases and Lunar Calendar

Discover all about Lunar Calendars, also known as Moon Calendars, including how they are used and how they work in relation to their counterpart, the Solar Calendar.

Lunar Calendar
A lunar calendar is based on the lunar phase cycles.
As there are a little over 12 lunar cycles in a solar year, the period of 12 lunar months, which is the equivalent of 354.37 days, is often referred to as a lunar year.

Lunar calendars provide an easy and organized way of observing the moon´s phases every day so that its changes and cycles can be predicted. In this way, we know when there is going to be a full, crescent or new moon. As the lunar phases vary depending on whether we are in the north or south hemisphere, there are calendars for both hemispheres.

By combining the lunar calendars with its corresponding solar calendars, we can also predict when there will be solar eclipses.

Why is the Lunar Calendar so important?

According to popular beliefs, the lunar cycle affects both the agricultural and fishing calendars. Perhaps more interesting to expecting mothers is the moon´s influence on Pregnancy Calendars as it is suggested that the presence of the full moon increases the likelihood of giving birth during this time. Women are also said to be more likely to conceive during the lunar phase which was present at the time of her own birth.

Examples of Lunar Calendars

The Islamic Calendar is one of the few calendars in existence which is based entirely on the lunar cycles. As the months of the Islamic Calendar are not linked to the seasons, they can drift each solar year by 11 to 12 days and only fall back into the position they had in relation to the solar year every 33 Islamic years.

Other examples of lunar calendars often add extra months to synchronize the period of time with the solar calendar.

Yearly Lunar Calendars

Find more information regarding the Solar Calendar and the Eclipse Calendar.

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