Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Full Moons: Peak and Potency

It's been too long since I've blogged here! Moving threw a very large stone in my path. It's taken some time to get my footing once more. In the meantime, I've begun leading full moon meditations at Body Mind & Soul in Houston. And I'm surprised at the number of people who show up that have virtually never celebrated or marked a lunar cycle before. When I ask if they know why we'd hold a meditation on the full moon, I often get blank stares. The moon's effect on our planet and our species is well documented.
Lunar cycles influence everything from ocean tides to agriculture to a woman's personal cycle. They have been cited for centuries as being responsible for things like bringing on labor or driving people crazy (lunatic--key root there is "luna" meaning moon). And while not everything we pin on the moon can be scientifically documented, there is no question that the moon's overall influence is.

Once upon a time, people lived their lives according to lunar cycles. Our own calendar is more or less taken from the four week lunar cycle. And while I won't get into a lot of heavy research, it's there. Look it up. There is all kinds of interesting documentation to do with the moon. Every major culture has honored a lunar deity, most often in the form of a goddess but not always. And with good reason. There is a fascinating documentary on the moon in which scientists explain that our planet would not exist as we know it without our moon. And whether we pay attention to it or not, we cannot escape the moon's pull and tug on our own lives. Wiccans have a saying: As above, so below. Which, for the record, I'm sure originated pre-Wicca, though I'm not going to dig up the facts on it right now. The idea attests to the interconnectedness of all things. The heavens affect life here on our planet. Our thoughts affect our bodies. And so on and vice versa. You cannot make waves in one corner of the pond that won't reach the other end. And so, with or without data to prove it, we understand that the moon's cycles greatly impact not just our seas or our crops, but our bodies, our feelings, our minds, our spirits, and our magick. And we observe and utilize that influence in the Esbat, the monthly celebration of the culmination of another lunar cycle.

I have been fascinated with the moon for as long as I can remember. In my personal relationship to it, I have honored many of the lunar goddesses, kept a lunar journal, and worked ritual and spell at dark, new, and full moon phases (as well as all the rest!). Writing these guided meditations for each full moon has been such an incredible rekindling of my personal love for lunar lore. Did you know that each full moon has its own name? What's the difference between a perigee and apogee moon? Is there really such a thing as a blue moon? What's a lunar eclipse and why do they call it a blood moon?

Taking time to slow down, notice the peak and potency of another lunar cycle as embodied by the full moon, and reconnect with those rhythms that are the very heartbeat of life is a practice everyone should take up. Tomorrow night the moon is full again. Take a breath, look up at the sky, and respect the mystery. I dare ya'.

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