On July 31st, at 8:12 p.m. pacific time (July 1st, 3:12 a.m. GMT), the Moon and the Sun will line up in their monthly conjunction. As the time of their exact alignment approaches, the light of the Moon will become less, until it is completely extinguished at 8:12 p.m Pacific Time. The period for about 24 hours previous to this completely dark Moon is called Amavasya. This is a time for being reflective and for recharging your energy. It is not a time for beginning new important endeavors.
The period that begins right at 8:12 p.m, just as the Moon begins to gain light again, lasting for about 24 hours, is the New Moon. This is called Pratipada, meaning first, and is good for planning. Many people think that the New Moon is a good time to start new things. In fact, the Moon still has very little light at this time, so it is not really a good time to begin important projects. It is better for making a mental plan and letting your intention incubate.
On the other hand, the New Moon also is the beginning of a new lunar cycle that will end at the time of the following New Moon. The quality of energy that is expressed during this cycle is generated by the nakshatra in which the New Moon is situated. The July 31st New Moon will be located in Pushya. I have been writing about Pushya nakshatra in the past few newsletters, describing the energy of the Moon as it transits that nakshatra. The shakti of Pushya is the power to create spiritual energy. It is ruled by Brihaspati, the guru of all the gods, in Hindu mythology. When the Moon is in Pushya, it tends to lift the spirit, and it is a good time to do things that uplift and inspire. This time, as the Moon transits Pushya, it will take place at the time of the New Moon, so the entire lunar month, up to August 30th, will promote inspiration.