Full moons occur when the sun and the moon are opposing, bringing the reflection of the sun onto the moon which creates the light. The moon represents the internal world, a more introverted approach; it is cooling and governs the feminine energy. The sun is about external expression, brightness, being open and light; it is heating and governs the masculine energy. As the two are opposites, there tends to be a slight tension in the air. Full moons are a wonderful time to just reflect on the recent manifestations in our life and observe our internal self. If new moons bring forward endings and new beginnings, full moons help us look at both these aspects and just observe, without judgement. Practicing mindfulness meditation and yoga can help us connect with this full moon energy, bringing clarity to our thoughts and openness in our hearts.
The practice of yoga helps us bring in unity all aspects of the self, the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Starting the day of a full moon with a yoga routine, can be an invigorating experience to channel into the full moon vibes.
Yoga takes us on a journey of self-discovery, growth and healing and connecting with these aspects during the full moon days can be a very special experience. Start with the moon salutation. The mantra for this is Om Chandra Namaha. Stand in Tadasana and bring your palms together in the centre of your chest, take a deep breath in and say the mantra. Then begin with Chandra Namaskar.
Continue in Balasana or child’s pose. This is a reflective pose which requires us to go within and just observe ourselves internally. Balasana is a way for us to be gentle with ourselves, to check in with how we are feeling and allow our thoughts and feelings to pass.
Anjaneyasana or low lunge pose takes us through the journey of leaning backwards, slightly releasing all the tension from the lower back which can be a mixture of emotional and physical tension, whilst opening our heart centre. Focusing on activating anahata – the heart chakra, this pose requires us to simply allow ourselves to be in the moment and to be open to all the present energy in our life. To go into anjaneyasana, start in downd dog and take the right leg back, placing the right knee on the ground. Bend your left knee and lift your arms extended upwards, opening the chest and bringing the shoulder blades together.
Ardha Chandrasana or half-moon pose requires us to find our balance, to trust ourselves and to learn to be patient. It is also a way to honour the moon and to acknowledge the strength which comes from our feminine energy. Opening to each side of the body, creates an open space in our lungs for the breath to become deeper and it helps us to open our heart to new experiences, whilst allowing our internal self to simply welcome it all, maintaining a state of balance.
Take 5 minutes afterwards in shavasana, lying down on your mat and just relax, letting go of all effort, thoughts and feelings. Let yourself be at peace in the present moment.
Because the full moon energy is manifested by the dynamic opposing forces of the sun and the moon, it is common for some people to feel some tension or frustration during this time, especially those who are quite sensitive. Often, we may feel slightly confused about this shift, but it’s perfectly normal because we are connected with all that is around us, so what is happening within the environment we are in, is transferred to our internal self also. Mindfulness teaches us to live in the moment and accept all that is in the now. It requires us to just sit still and observe all that is happening, without judgement, guilt, shame or other negative reactions. You can practice meditation at any time during the full moon day, especially during that night.
Simply sit still in a comfortable seated position or lying down. Focus on your breath, starting with three deep inhales through the nose and exhale through the mouth. Then just breathe normally, and relax by closing your eyes. Let go of all thoughts and if any come to your mind, just let them be, allowing yourself to let these pass with every exhale. You can use chin mudra, connecting your index fingers with your thumbs and connecting with your consciousness, releasing the ego and all desires. At any point during your meditation, you can say the following mantra to yourself: “I allow myself to completely live in the moment, accepting all that is in the now”. This practice requires us to be patient with ourselves, to let go of attaching ourselves to our past experiences or setting expectations for future ones. We become mindful of all that we are in this moment in time.
Another great way to become more in tune with the energy of the full moon is to write about anything you wish to reflect upon. Writing is a form of communication and this helps activate vishudi, the throat chakra. A balanced vishudi chakra opens up our communication channels, helping us become more clear about our ideas and expressing ourselves with confidence and free will. Journaling is a wonderful therapeutic technique and it brings out our creative streak, which connects us with our feminine energy, the same of the moon. Write down everything that you’ve been holding within and wish to express, all that has gone and you wish to release and most importantly acknowledge all that you have manifested in your recent time. Expressing ourselves through writing is a healthy, creative way to let go and connect with what is within us.