Moon of Blood: The longest lunar eclipse of this century
This evening, the Earth will be located between the Moon and the Sun, giving rise to the longest lunar eclipse of this century, adopting a reddish tone that makes this phenomenon known as the Moon of Blood.
A little bit of science
Unlike solar eclipses, lunars are visible from anywhere in the world, once the Moon is over the horizon at the time of the eclipse.
Africa, the Middle East and some Central Asian countries are the places where the eclipse will be fully visible. Australia can only enjoy the start and, South America, the end. Regarding Spain, it can be seen from the beginning of the total phase, which coincides with the departure of the Moon in Madrid, at 9:30 p.m., until the end of the phenomenon, at 23:13. Its maximum will be at 22:22, Peninsular time. As the beginning of the totality will coincide with the appearance of the Moon in the Iberian Peninsula, the satellite will be eclipsed in most Spanish cities from the beginning.
The other protagonist of the night will be the planet Mars, which will be only 57.6 million kilometers from Earth. It has been 15 years since the appearance of its diameter is not so great. And we will have to wait until 2035 to see the red planet so close. At first glance you will only see a bright spot, but with lenses or a telescope it will be possible to observe it in detail.
Myths, legends and other stories
The red moon accumulates many superstitions. There are some related to natural catastrophes, with the auguries of misfortune, something very rooted in Israel; and also with fertility and pregnancy, such as the belief that a pregnant woman who is exposed to an eclipse will have a cursed or malformed child.
It is common for ancient civilizations to interpret that the moon was being attacked. The Incas believed that for a jaguar and for the Mayans a moon of blood evidenced the struggle between the gods. It is tradition to make noise, with firecrackers or hitting pouts, to prevent the sun from eating the moon. For the Californians, they were their pets, but the wives of the moon always arrived in time to save her.
Also, beware of the werewolf, which is supposed to be unleashed with the blood moon and it is easier to become one of them.
Others who took advantage of the magical virtues and the supposed great power of the Moon, and among it, of the Moon of Blood, were the witches who use it to attract abundance, cleanse energy and give thanks to the feminine energy.
In any case, tonight take a look at the sky and enjoy the show that nature offers us.