Blog for the week of 9.16
In honor of the Harvest moon ( Which is simply the full moon closest to the Autumn equinox) This week let’s take a look at some common moon myths that are associated with full moons or try to explain the cycles of the moon Full list of 10 moon myths found here : http://moonphases.info/ten-common-moon-myths.html
Myth #1: Werewolves shape shift and appear on full moons.
Reality: Most of the deep set beliefs that werewolves have a set timeline for transforming and that they’re killed by silver bullets stems from the 1941 movie The Wolf Man. Werewolves have be “reported” as far back as Grecian times ( I guess they had hairy people then as well) but the whole notion of werewolves ( if they even exist) and their “monthly cycles” in relation to the moon are no much more than Hollywood propaganda.
Myth #2: The moon reflects everything
This myth made me stop and ponder a bit, because it doesn’t seem so farfetched. I chose this myth to dig up some dirt on, and find if this was more than a myth. After scouring the nearest search engine and scrolling past all the Yahoo answers (definitely not of scientific merit) I do eventually find a Lecture on the sun and the moon. (Full lecture hyperlink at bottom) The first part goes on to say that while besides the moon being the second brightest object in out sky; it only reflects about 3% of the Sun’s light in order to shine. Wanting to double check the accuracy of this 3% reflection statistic I find an article explaining why it reflects at all. There is a way to measure how reflective an object is called Albedo so the moon must have alow Albedo to only reflect 3% of the Sun’s light. ( another site claimed 7% of the light reflected so my verdict lies between the two variables).
I don’t believe I know anyone who believes in these myths seriously, even though my grandpa will tell the man in the moon story about a billion times in a night if the moon is out when we stargaze. Logically, to me, it seems like these beliefs in the moon are like some peoples belief in bad luck, that even though science can debunk them, they are still passed down and believed in for fun or tradition, who knows?
( full Moon/ sun lecture with helpful pictures: http://www2.astro.psu.edu/users/rbc/a1/lec3n.html)
How Werewolves work : http://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/strange-creatures/werewolf.htm