top of page
  • Writer's pictureVicki Viall

Beachy Moon Power

We all know how powerful the sun is. We literally revolve around the sun. In other words, it's the center of our universe. But, we also revolve around the moon. And, in some ways, the moon affects us more than the sun.

How can that be, you ask. Well, let's talk about the ocean and tides.

While both the sun and the moon have power over the tides, the moon has more power on tides than does the sun.

"The key to understanding how the tides work is understanding the relationship between the motion of our planet and the Moon and Sun. As the Earth spins on its own axis, ocean water is kept at equal levels around the planet by the Earth's gravity pulling inward and centrifugal force pushing outward.

However, the Moon's gravitational forces are strong enough to disrupt this balance by accelerating the water towards the Moon. This causes the water to 'bulge.' As the Moon orbits our planet and as the Earth rotates, the bulge also moves. The areas of the Earth where the bulging occurs experience high tide, and the other areas are subject to a low tide." (Note 1)

"Because the tides are influenced by both the Moon and the Sun, it's easy to see that when the Sun lines up with the Moon and the Earth, as during a New Moon or Full Moon (a configuration also called "syzygy"), the tidal effect is increased. These are known as spring tides, named not for the season, but for the fact that the water "springs" higher than normal." Same source as Note 1.

Most everyone reading this has probably been to the beach at least once, right? Did you get to observe both a high and a low tide? Every day, there is one of each. They both alter the look of the beach and the amount of beach available to sun bathe on, or to play and relax on.

The tides also affect sports like surfing, swimming and fishing, so I guess we could surmise that ye olde moon controls us while we are at the beach, right?

There is a far more important reason for us to appreciate the ocean than the tides, though. For example, did you know that roughly 70% of the earth's oxygen is generated from the ocean? 70%! So, if you stop to think about it that way, every seven out of ten breaths you take are courtesy of the ocean. (Note 2)

That powerful ole moon also regulates the earth's climate.

"The sea regulates our climate. It soaks up the heat and transports warm water from the equator to the poles, and cold water from the poles to the tropics. Without these currents, the weather would be extreme in some regions, and fewer places would be habitable." Same source as Note 2.

Do we need to even address the food source that is the ocean? I didn't think so.

Here's a question only for those who have been to the beach: did you notice that while there, you were calmer, more relaxed, and/or happier? Yes, it's true, the moon and the beach also affect our mental health.

"When our face touches water, our heart rate immediately slows down, and blood moves from the extremities to the brain, heart and vital organs of our body. Seals and dolphins have this reflex, and so do we! It wakes us up and makes us feel vibrant and alive." Same source as Note 2.

I would dispute the face touching water part. All I need is that first lung full of salty air, and my entire being changes, relaxes, and shines from the inside out!

I can hear you shaking your head in agreement all the way over here.

I have loved the ocean from the time I was a small child. I guess it was no surprise, then, when I joined the Navy. And, it was definitely no surprise when I realized all my happiest memories of my time in the Navy were being on the ship and being out on the ocean. And, no where else on else does the moon shine as bright as it does over the ocean.

You can take the sailor off the ocean, but you can never remove the ocean from within the sailor. Never. Ever.

And, that brings me to another way of thinking about tides.

"Many people believe that the Moon’s gravitational force also affects humans, as our bodies are made up of approximately 70% fluid. However, there is no scientific evidence supporting this belief. The amount of liquid in a human body is far from big enough to experience tides." (Note 3)

I believe that 100%, and why I believe that the ocean remains inside everyone of us touched by said ocean.

With all that the ocean does for us and gives to us, shouldn't we be concerned about it? I don't only mean just the water, for that is a given.

We should also be concerned about the beaches, the dunes that protect the beaches, and what we leave on the beaches and/or in or near the ocean.

For example, how many times have you seen children (of all ages) digging holes in the sand on the beach? And, the holes were still there when you departed at the end of the day, right? Did you stop to think about someone out for an evening or early morning stroll stepping into one of the holes and falling, or worse, breaking a bone?

Or about the visitors from the sea coming ashore to lay turtle eggs? A turtle getting stuck in one of those holes can very easily die! And, that has an affect on the survival of the turtle population.

Daily, the beaches face such threats as pollution, destruction by other species (including the human one), natural disasters, and more. "These threats to the ocean are so extensive that more than 40 percent of the ocean has been severely affected and no area has been left untouched. Consequently, humanity is losing the food, jobs, and critical environmental services that a healthy ocean generates." (Note 4)

The ocean and its tides are instrumental and critical to us even if we do not live at or near the beach. And, its survival is key to our own. So, why, when we visit don't we take better care of it? Why when we live there do we not build it up instead of building house on or over the protection of the dunes? Why do we leave crap and trash all over it at the end of the day - especially when there are trash cans within easy reach?

This is a treasure for us, for our lives, and for our physical and mental well being, and we need to protect it and nurture it. Don't you agree?

So, if you go walking on the beach with your dog, and it poops, pick it up. The poop, not the dog. Place it in a nearby trash receptable.

Don't walk all over the dunes that are already struggling to survive. Utilize the beach accesses.

Don't get up to leave and not pick up your trash, broken toys, or broken chairs, towels, etc. Pick them up and dispose of them properly or take them with you.

If you dig a hole, fill it in.

And, it you see others picking up trash that is not theirs, join in or, at a minimum, thank them for what they are doing!

And, always wink at the moon and thank her for helping make the ocean such a special and wonderful place. :)

Well, I hope you have a wonderful week, but now I have to go. Surf's up!!

6 views1 comment

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page