This week’s full moon has a few notable accolades attributed to it. Firstly, it’s a blue moon - a second full moon in the same calendar month - which only happens every two or three years and gives rise to the idiom "once in a blue moon" that describes rare occurrences. Secondly, and perhaps more excitingly, is its supermoon status, which currently places lustrous Luna at the closest point to Earth (the perigee) in her annual orbit. This cosmic geography is anticipated to increase the apparent size and brightness of the full moon, particularly as it rises over the horizon. The resulting blue supermoon is therefore quite a rarity for the keen astral event collector (the next one is in 2032 apparently) so, weather permitting, it might be worth seeking out a special east-facing spot to watch what promises to be a spectacular moonrise.

And finally, hot off the lunar press comes news that last week saw the first successful, unmanned moon landing by India... The Chandrayaan-3 (or "mooncraft" in Sanskrit) spacecraft’s Vikram lander touched down in an area close to the lunar south pole, a world first for any space program. The South Pole region is hidden from Earth's view and thought to hold vital reserves of frozen water and precious elements. If enough water ice is located, future missions could potentially allow a moon base to be established using the water ice to extract oxygen and fuel.

All being well, the lander’s rover vehicle, Pragyaan, the Sanskrit word for wisdom, will trundle around the lunar craters and trenches for a couple of weeks, taking pictures, conducting experiments and collecting samples. Researchers are hoping that some of the information that returns will shed a greater light on the moon’s geology and the inextricably linked origins of Earth. These are exciting times for lunar explorers everywhere, but it remains to be seen whether the ramifications of galactic colonization can be negotiated with appropriate and timely Pragyaan.

Despite all the inspiring moony brouhaha above, the activity means very little in terms of astrological influence. Of quieter but more significant note is this full moon’s peak in Pisces, a watery, emotional sign often capable of overreaction and self-sabotage. It is likely to drench the coming fortnight in an emotional deluge, water signs being considered emotionally sensitive with a tendency to find their extremes at full moon. The lunar-sensitive amongst us will, therefore, need to be wary of saturating our immediate surroundings with fluctuating waves of emotional neediness and oversensitivity.

Whether seeking the limelight or not, most of us will probably be wondering this week why no one seems to be giving us enough attention. There is, therefore, a strong potential for serial hissy fits in response to a perceived lack of recognition. If the hissy is directed at us, some understanding tolerance might be usefully employed, as it is likely to be in short supply everywhere else this weekend. Reacting to others' lunacy at a similar fever pitch will cause explosive emotional fallout of no use to anyone, so breathe deep and count to ten, then count to ten again... Watch out for public figures throwing their toys out of the pram over the next few days in a concerted effort to be noticed on the world stage. The impending Trump and Giuliani show in Georgia looks like a blockbuster.

Under the guiding light of this blue supermoon, we all contribute to the ecosystem of our beautiful, water-bound blue planet. 70% of Earth's surface is covered in water, whose tides are determined by gravitational resonance with the moon's orbit. Our bodies, a miraculous creation of Earth’s ecosystem, are 60% water, but certain vital organs like the heart and brain (73% water) and the lungs (83% water) are even more dependent on this vital constituent element. Emotional and mental health rely heavily on physical health. The thinking goes that if the moon's orbit drives the ocean tides, it’s more than likely to have a passing influence on the watery nature of our holistic well-being.

But water constitutes just a small percentage of our planet's mass - roughly 0.5% - so how does the Moon's trajectory affect all the remaining elemental matter? Along with the ocean tides, science has measured, amongst others, earth tides, fire tides, air tides, and blood tides.

The moon creates a tide that pulls the crust of the earth towards its lunar mass. The surface of our planet actually rises between 4 to 12 inches when the moon is above the horizon, which then recedes as she sets. Lunar tides also affect the fiery molten core of the Earth, causing it to surge and recede just like ocean tides. This has been measured as a contributory factor in the cause of earthquakes and volcanic activity. Blood tides affect all living beings on the planet. There is plenty of recent scientific evidence of the moon's tidal effect on living organisms and their reproductive cycles. From rutting deer to the wild sex of coral reefs, from human menstruation cycles (menses derives from mene, the Greek word for moon), to the pollination of plants, the moon plays a vital role in the intelligent evolution of life on Earth.

The atmosphere around Earth reaches up to approximately 60 miles from its surface. We are reliably informed that this envelope of "air" weighs an almighty five million billion metric tons, apparently equivalent to a 30-foot depth of water across the entire Earth's surface. The moon has a measurable effect on this air mass, altering the density of Earth's atmosphere daily. When overhead, the gravitational pull of the moon can drag the atmosphere outward by as much as 25% (the equivalent of 15 extra miles closer to the moon), with attendant shifts in air pressure. These shifts in pressure play a significant role in affecting weather patterns on Earth's surface.

In conjunction with the inescapable effects of climate warming, the lunar cycle can exacerbate shifts in air pressure that contribute to the more frequent and intense storms, hurricanes, and typhoons being witnessed globally. Last week, Tropical Storm Hilary was widely reported to have laid large areas of southern California to waste with winds over 100 mph, floods, and mudslides. At full moon, ocean high tides are at their peak, so the potential for further coastline catastrophe under this Pisces supermoon may become apparent. Vulnerable islands and coastal regions with lower media profiles than Los Angeles are already on constant alert as this year’s El Niño hurricane season gathers momentum.

But no moon-centric meteorological understanding should obfuscate the origin of the current perilous condition for life on Planet Earth. The Moon has been doing her benevolent thing for four and a half billion years, yet human behaviour in only the last two hundred years has created the challenging climatic dynamics all inhabitants of Earth are now having to navigate. And sadly, the situation is getting worse.

This is the excellent foppery of the world, that, when we are sick in fortune, often the surfeit of our own behaviour, we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars; as if we were villains on necessity; fools by heavenly compulsion; knaves, thieves, and treachers by spherical pre-dominance; drunkards, liars, and adulterers by an enforc’d obedience of planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, by a divine thrusting on. An admirable evasion of whore-master man, to lay his goatish disposition to the charge of a star!

(William Shakespeare - King Lear)

We can blame no quirk of astrological fate or anyone but ourselves for our planetary plight. As this column so often highlights, prevailing science continues to uncover how everything connects to everything else in the constantly evolving, unified field of existence in which we operate. If everything interconnects, it follows that whatever we think, say, or do is an influential input to the sum of all there is, however seemingly insignificant. A simple decision to walk or cycle rather than drive becomes vitally meaningful the moment it shifts from individual to collective behaviour.

Under this emotionally charged Pisces Full Moon, there is an irresistible case for developing a more conscious approach to our behaviour so that we don’t repeat habitual, often harmful, negative patterns of behaviour in favour of a more positive approach. In effect, that approach is to care, and to care enough to embody change.

I am not suggesting we adopt a blithe "happy clappy" attitude at all times (although there is nonetheless a strong argument for expressing gratitude as a default non-judgmental approach to circumstances, good or ill). Shit invariably happens, darkness sometimes descends, but it is within our remit to determine how we react to that which hits the fan. By not adding to the human cesspool of spite and hatred, we make a clear choice not to cause harm - a constructive, powerful way to change the world one small individual step at a time. As mentioned earlier, if something triggers us in a not altogether healthy way, this would be a tremendous fortnight in which to count to ten, then count to ten again before reacting. If we can do it under the influence of this Pisces Full Moon, we’ll be able to do it anytime, so the test of our intent and mettle is there to be met.

In an era of incessant, predominantly negative media bombardment specifically designed to make us feel powerless and worthless, let's set out to encourage and maintain a positive disposition and outlook despite the circumstances we encounter. In doing so, we undoubtedly contribute to the collective energetic reservoir of positivity from which those trying to rebuild their lives from the disaster of war, famine, or climate catastrophe can draw, be they in Somalia and the huge region of East Africa: Ethiopia, South Sudan, and DR Congo affected by drought, crop failure, and the non-arrival of grain from Russia and Ukraine; the bombed wreckage of Syria and Afghanistan; the ongoing war in Yemen and Ukraine; the millions still to recover from earthquakes, floods, fires, heatwaves, and pestilence; or the hundreds of thousands displaced by the same, risking their lives to seek refuge anywhere that might house them. Our positive thoughts and compassion would be well-placed. And, of course, we can also take positive action by sending donations to bona fide relief organizations like the International Rescue Committee or the British Red Cross to complement efforts made at home to lead loving, peaceful, considerate lives.

Generous gestures yield the most when that isn’t their purpose.

(Malcolm Forbes)

By developing a greater awareness of the power within our thoughts, words, and actions, we enable ourselves to channel that power in a chosen direction - for the benefit of ourselves, our immediate relationships and our environment, but ultimately as our unique, purposeful contribution to the benefit of all.

Easy to do are things that are bad and harmful to oneself. But exceedingly difficult to do are things that are good and beneficial.

(Gautama Buddha)