When it comes to the moon, I think we can roughly be divided into two groups: into those who follow moon’s every step, her cycle and plan their days and events accordingly, and those who simply find the cycle of the moon the representation of the ever changing cycle of life itself.
I fit more into the second group. And while I don’t have a scientific explanation on how the moon can affect our moods, I hold deep affection for her. I find the moon enchanting and see her changing phases as an opportunity to dive a little deeper into myself, sit still and let the moon illuminate parts of myself that I’m not familiar with yet or often shy away from.
And I think it’s important to sit with all of ourselves, not just the shiny, happy parts, but those parts of ourselves that we might deem as less then, as something we wish we weren’t, as something to be ashamed of.
But until we’re ready to sit with those parts of ourselves too, look them straight in the eye and accept them, can we really accept all of who we are?
So in order to have a look into these parts with intention, rather than just noticing them when they (and when I say “they,” I mean “I”) act out or when something triggers me and brings them to the surface without much of my control or understanding, there are two things I try to practice every new and/or full moon: rest and introspection.
First step? I try to say “no”—to plans, hangouts and social events so I have enough time to not feel rushed and really devote my time, and my whole attention, to the moon. If the full/new moon falls on a weekday, I usually do this on the weekend (does it still count, moon?).
In order to really feel comfortable, I unroll my mat in front of my altar and make it a nest: I use as many bolsters, pillows and blankets as needed to really feel warm and cosy. I get my favourite cup of tea, sit on the mat and clear the space with one of my smudge sticks. I close my eyes for a bit, focus on my breath, on the Earth below me, on the Moon above me, and do some gentle, intuitive movements.
And then depending on the cycle of the moon, the rest of my ritual looks a bit different.
Full Moon Ritual
In this world of constant comparison and the pressure to be and do better each day, I’ve been noticing it’s been increasingly hard to get a fresh start and just give ourselves a little break.
And, for me, the Full Moon represents exactly that—a time to shed the skin that no longer fits along with societal expectations and the things that no longer serve me.
What I like to do is journal and write down all the things I’m ready to let go of with that full moon. All the should’s, all the external expectations that are not mine. But keep in mind, you might not be ready to let it all go just yet.
Personally, I don’t feel comfortable practicing this inside but if you’re not as clumsy as me, you could write all these things on a piece of paper and then symbolically burn them.
I usually finish the evening—my contemplative meeting with the moon—with a yoga nidra practice (you can choose a few from our M&L app).
And before you’re done for the night, leave your crystals under the moonlight to let them charge and renew over the night.
New Moon Ritual
And then comes the New Moon—a new start, a new beginning, a clean slate. Whereas the Full Moon is all about looking back and letting go, the New Moon is about looking forward and inquiring within to see what we’d like to manifest in this new cycle.
So after sitting a bit and moving—not just my body but also stagnant energy)—I write. I write about the things I dream of. But not only of those big plans and ideas that will take a while to manifest, I write about the little things that need to be completed in order to work on getting there. Little by little.
I love to finish the ritual with a little planting seeds nidra that can be found in the M&L app (or will be available soon).
One other thing that I love, love, love to do is to join a Women’s Circle that is usually being held every full or new moon. It’s a way of connecting to other amazing women, sharing your journey and re-connecting to yourself as you go.
Bonus: if you’ve got Tarot cards or Moon cards or any other cards that you have a connection with, this is a powerful time for their insight.
I’m not saying these rituals will magically solve all our problems and make all our dreams come true but they might just give us a little insight into ourselves and help us get clear on what we're ready to let go of in order to get where we'd like to be—and not forget about the magic of the journey on the way.
Dreamer, creator, lover, yogi.