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On Monday, October 3rd, 2016, Slooh will once again take part in the tradition of Moon Sighting, pointing the Canary Islands telescopes at a very young Moon and welcoming in a brand new month in the lunar calendar. The most recent New Moon has been widely referred to in the media as a “Black Moon,” and has captured the attention of the public for that very reason, but that name has been widely misreported, according to Slooh’s team of astronomers. The real Black Moon, they say, will actually appear just before Halloween on October 30th.

During the broadcast, Slooh Astronomer Paul Cox will take a look at the mechanics of the Moon’s relationship with the Earth and Sun, explore the lunar phases, how they happen, and their importance to various cultures. He’ll explore the significance of the New Moon to the Islamic faith, with special guest Shaykh Abdulbary Yahya of the Maghrib Institute, who will also discuss the monthly practice of Moonsighting.

We will also be joined by Slooh’s Spiritual Correspondent, Helen Avery, who will take a look at the various definitions for the Black Moon and the way it has been adopted by pagan practitioners. For some modern practitioners of Wicca, the Black Moon has a deep spiritual meaning and can affect how and when they practice their craft. For others, the Black Moon means very little. She will discuss both sides, and will explore the way the phases of the Moon play into the practices of modern pagans.

Then, we will be joined by Slooh Astronomer Bob Berman who will be on hand to settle the debate about whether or not this month’s Moon is even a Black Moon at all. Though widely reported as such, the timing of this month’s New Moon may not truly qualify it as a Black Moon. Paul and Bob will discuss the relevance of titles like the “Black Moon”, their definitions, and why scientists rely on specific time zones to coordinate and measure their observations.