Why Make A Moon Ritual?
Moon rituals can help us track our progress, provide space for introspection and see life in a nonlinear way aiding in creative thinking, and enhanced productivity. By tracking our progress on a project through the moon cycles, we may see alternatives by stepping back or forward through the moon cycle.
Lately, I’ve been drawn by the heavens; tracking the cycles of the moon, running outside to see the stars on a clear night, taking in meteor showers on late fall nights or even setting my alarm to experience rare planetary alignments in the night’s sky. I want to “feel” the cycles of nature in ways I have never have before.
Connecting more deeply to nature.
In the past year, I have found spending time out of doors, even in the rain or 90% humidity, to be very soul filling. I have felt a connection and fulfillment in nature like never before. Now, it seems natural to connect to the moon and the night’s sky as well. My quest is to experience the richness and beauty of nature both day and night.
Whether you are an advanced sky watcher, and know the names and locations of the stars and planets, or you are like me, just a lover of the beauty of night’s sky, there is no doubt that the moon plays a special role. We have been fascinated with the moon for as long as there are memories, stories about the moon have passed from one to another for thousands of years. Rituals and a variety of beliefs surrounding the moon abound making it both beautiful and mysterious.
We know the role the moon plays with weather patterns, tides and even our sleep patterns. The moon is integral to the ebb and flow of life. It seems fitting that we might find meaning in following the moon’s cycles, and perhaps use them to help us create healthy habits and explore our inner and outer worlds in different ways.
A Playful Exploration of Moon Cycles
In this post, you won’t find deep ties to astrology, science, nor any specific religious beliefs, for I approach this subject with simple curiosity and playfulness. You won’t find anything complicated or too time-consuming; for I don’t want to dilute the experience of the beauty that is our earth and heavens above. My intention is to simply to celebrate beauty and life; to try a few things and see if they bring value or insight to my life.
However, if you’d like to create a special song, dance, prayers or ceremony, feel free. Some one created the rituals we currently practice, there is no reason you can’t create a ritual that is meaningful for you. If you feel moved to a moonlight drum circle or to bathe by the light of the moon, by all means, do it!
Over the past few years, I have developed a morning ritual for myself that has improved my quality of life and has created a good foundation to start my days. Recently, I added an evening routine that helps me take note of what I’ve accomplished, celebrate wins and pray for solutions and insights that will help me over come barriers and work through challenges more rapidly.
It seemed like a fun idea to consider moon cycles and possibly carve out time to take note of the moon’s cycles and celebrate beginnings, endings and the in-betweens around the moon’s cycles.
The moon’s cycle begins with the full moon which is said to give us peak energy, offers blessings, and is a perfect time to express gratitude and celebration.
The waxing gibbous moon encourages patience, editing and refining, and a focus on self care.
The first quarter brings momentum, challenges and calls us to take action.
The waxing crescent brings fresh energy, helps us conceptualize, and focus on detail.
And then we come around to the new moon which denotes new beginnings, new relationships and is a great time to set long term goals and intentions.
The waning crescent moon encourages us to rest, restore and opens us to listening to intuition.
The last quarter denotes breaking down barriers, readjusting, allows for transition and makes space for forgiveness.
The waning gibbous moon encourages nurturing, service, harvest, and receiving. The cycles go round and round, drawing us ever forward even in the quiet of rest and restoration.
We can use these cycles to keep track of where we are and to remind ourselves to take time to celebrate, take action, or to sit back and evaluate.
We can compare the descriptions to our lives and see if they measure up or whether we have completely different experiences of the moon’s purported cycles. We may find it makes perfect sense, or it makes no sense at all.
For me, the creation of rituals is meant to be light, playful, and personal. One can derive one’s own meaning from our surroundings, or not. As a fairly practical person, I know that if something doesn’t make sense, feels inauthentic or doesn’t my life, I won’t keep it up, and quite frankly we shouldn’t be maintaining activities that don’t fit our beliefs, or our lives anyway.
As I consider moon cycles, (and I’m sure you can easily find completely different descriptions, by the way) I think of the projects I work on, the excitement of beginnings, picking up energy, inspiration and excitement, working through challenges and blocks, needing time to sit back and evaluate, and ultimately seeing the project through and celebrating.
Breaking our goals into small, manageable monthly pieces can be a successful approach, and is often used by the most productive among us.
Here are Some Activities Tied to the Moon’s Cycle to Consider
New beginnings, relationships and a time to set long term goals and intuitions
- Create or revisit vision boards and goals; note progress, and set new intentions.
- Venture out to meet and make new friends, join a group, invite someone new for coffee.
- Read a new book; spend time looking for new inspiration
Resting, recharging and restoring
Along life’s path, it is so important to build in time for rest and recharging. We talk a lot about self care these days, and there are countless posts with ideas. I keep a list of self care ideas on my phone, then choose one that resinates.
- Take an afternoon at the park,
- Schedule in quiet time, do a walking meditation.
- Listen and notice the sounds around you as well as to your inner voices;
- Journal your prayers and remember to write down the answers to your prayers too.
Breaking down barriers, readjust, make space for forgiveness and openness
Most people encounter barriers but give little time to breaking them down. Making space to work through barriers, readjust plans and opening to new ways of looking at things can help us make our way through our problems and issues.
- Write a forgiveness letter to yourself or someone else; burn it, or send it, which ever feels right.
- Imagine a barrier crumbling beneath your feet, or negative energy rolling off you as if you are covered in teflon.
Editing and Refining
- This is a time to take a look at how things are going, and while I like to keep track of my progress weekly, it is super important to take a deeper look to see what is really working and what isn’t and learn from this
- It is also a time to really dive in and refine what you are doing. Recently I watched Chef Thomas Keller on Master Class, who focuses on continuous refinement.
- Editing, and paring things down is so important. Yet we rarely take time to do this until we have a significant build up which ultimately bogs us down.
- Take a break from social media and journal your observations.
Our bodies and cycles of the moon
Extensive studies have shown that mensuration cycles do not necessarily coincide with the cycles of the moon. However, tuning into our cycles, tracking them and applying self care, nurturing and grace through our cycles whether they coincide with the cycles of the moon or not, helps to soothe rough edges and make use of high and low energy periods in our lives. Taking care in this way helps to avoid burn out and
We can also tune into a more sensuous way of being in the world, taking note of textures, fabrics, sounds, smells and what we see.
Some activities we might consider as we tune into the
2. Employing fasting, whole food fasts,
3. Lymphatic draining, massage and
4. a daily yoga practice can help….
Creating Your Own Rituals
- Yoga and meditation: You will see that taking time out to tend our bodies through yoga and tend our minds through meditation is mentioned frequently here. This is because these practices are invaluable in maintaining our health and wellness.
2. Outdoor time: Spending time out doors helps expand our thinking, there is nothing more therapeutic than fresh air and beautiful scenery and a walk out of doors is linked to expansive thinking, and inspiration.
3. Journalling: whether you write, doodle or draw, journaling is a beautiful ritual to include.
4. Self Care routines such as taking a bath, making time to be alone, scheduling time to spend with others.
5. Mini Celebrations: Celebrating small wins, and micro moments of joy is a new practice for me. We tend to remember the cruel words of others, and the mistakes and failures we make, but rarely note the micro wins each day. The project you completed, or the complement you gave or received should be quietly celebrated. This is slightly different that gratitude;
Nothing is more beautiful than a talisman to remind us to tune in, be present, and care for ourselves. Shop these favorites:
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