Holiday Survival: Moon Ritual
As the hectic holidays start to take hold in our lives, there’s really only one anecdote to the chaos: Self-care. That’s right, 2019’s biggest buzzword is the thing that will help us survive (and thrive) in the face of seasonal insanity, commitment overwhelm and anticipation of what’s to come in the New Year ahead.
Think about it: We all have rituals. But, are we conscious of them? Do we use our rituals to meet our unique emotional needs? Yoga classes and Women’s Circle gatherings are some of my favorite ways to offer opportunity for connection and deep transformative rituals. I wonder, do you actually take time to prioritize YOUR self-care. My guess is that very few of us do.
But there are things we can do for ourselves. In fact, the next few weeks, as we wrap-up 2019, I will share with you seasonal self-care strategies and tips. May you find the opportunity to gift yourself ATTENTION for self-care.
This week, in light of the LAST FULL MOON of the year, I want to share a Moon Ritual with you. This Moon Ritual is a practice of INTENTION, which, as you may remember, is the first of three steps for inspired living. 🙂 Women’s Circle shared in this Moon Ritual experience last week. You may have heard some of us howling at the moon!
So today, even though the moon is waning, you might find the cold clear nights perfect for clearing your intention and pausing for a moment to bask in the beauty of the sun’s light reflected in the moon, the beauty of your inner light reflected back at you.
The full moon is a time of brightness, where the moon reflects fully the light of the sun—metaphorically speaking, the light of total conscious awareness. The full moon is symbolically a time where consciousness and unconsciousness are in accord and in perfect reflection of one another. As such, it is a time of fulfillment that, like all things, has an end. We enjoy about three days in the light of the full moon before it begins to wane again. We embrace the fulfillment of the full moon as a moment to honor and cherish that which we’ve grown, and to let fall away that which we no longer need for the new journey ahead. The full moon is our chance to let go.
Now, I am not so much a “believer” in Astrology as I am an active seeker open to wisdom and insight wherever it might arise. I encourage you to adapt the ritual below to align with your values and beliefs. Change the words, address your Higher Power, do whatever brings you into a mindful, safe place to welcome your best self.
Full Moon Ritual
We prepare for the Full Moon Ceremony by bathing, if possible. This loosens anything that we need to wash away or burn up as a part of this ritual. Anointing yourself with Holy water or cleansing with sage, sweetgrass, or palo santo is an alternative. When you are ready, light a candle (or several) and a stick of incense and prepare your space for the ritual. Perhaps you say something like, “…to the extent that this experience serves the highest good” to ensure a karma-free ritual.
Pause for reflection. Write down all the things that you are ready to let go. Write down things that no longer serve you, any blockages to success and happiness, or any grudges you carry. Let go of the things you have no control over and anything that addresses the astrological realm that the full moon is highlighting.
Consider: The main influence on full moon December 2019 is the triple conjunction of Venus, Saturn, and Pluto. So Venus love and money will be a major focus of this moon phase. This means serious challenges involving love and/or money are reaching a crisis point. And for most people, it will be a difficult two weeks with Saturn creating delays and restrictions, and Pluto bringing fear and crises.
When you finish writing your intentions, it is time to burn them. Fire, as the most transformative element we have inside and out, turns what we are ready to let go into fuel for new possibilities.
Use a metal bowl or ceramic pot to safely burn your piece of paper or burn the paper in your sink to contain the flame. Have water immediately available, just in case. (If this feels unsafe in any way, skip this part, or take the ritual outdoors so as not to burn things in your home. If you skip this part, tear the paper into small pieces, or submerge it into water so that it dissolves.)
The key here is transformation, both inner and outer, and fire is the greatest resource for this purpose. When you are ready to burn your paper or transform it in the way you’ve chosen, read what you have written out loud three times. Saying it aloud (or to the company present) allows you to consciously embody the process of letting go. Once you finish reading, burn your paper and watch as the flames consume and transform your words into ash.
Ash is a sacred element, and for the yogi, ash is the gift we receive when our spiritual efforts burn off what prevents us from being free. Covering oneself in ash is an age-old tradition in India and is still witnessed today. When your sacred ash is cool, use the first finger of your right hand to anoint yourself by placing a dot of ash at your third eye so that you see how this transformation further opens your eyes to a new way of being.
To close this ceremony, snuff your candle, bring your hands to prayer, and chant Om three times. Exit the space with care and leave the ash on your forehead for as long as you are able.
OM. OM. OM.
Wishing you abundance of love and peace.