“But even when the moon looks like it's waning...it's actually never changing shape. Don't ever forget that.”
The moon has long been associated with Divine Feminine energy. Our connection as women to the moon is deeply intimate. Just as the moon’s gravitational force influences the tides and movement of water on the earth, so it it influences our menstrual cycle and state of emotions. When women connect with their feminine energy and the energy of the moon, especially when it is full, it can help increase receptivity to the energies of intuition, creativity and fertility.
The moon and stars have been used in navigation and many ancient cultures followed the Lunar calendar, helping people determine the best time for planting and harvesting crops, as well as measuring time. The lunar deities represent important female archetypes and the waxing, full and waning moon are associated with the archetypes of Maiden, Mother and Crone.
There are some fascinating studies that have been done linking a woman’s fertility peak during a particular moon phase to matching the one under which she was born. In astrology, it is believed that the full moon creates an atmosphere of high sexual energy, and along with rising female hormones, this is believed to be why more babies are born on full moons than any other time. It matches the moon phase of conception exactly!
Some form of moon worship can be found in most ancient religions as the moon has been a universal symbol of fertility throughout time and in many different cultures. You can find many different moon goddesses harnessing the introspective and intuitive powers of the moon and these deities have a variety of functions and traditions that corresponded with fertility and mother nature that depend upon the particular culture, from where they originate. Female energy and goddess mythology and religious traditions have always fascinated me, although not all moon deities are actually female. (eg Chandra in Hinduism). I will focus on the different Moon Goddesses in another post, but for now I encourage you to heighten your awareness of the moon and her cycles. She has been a source of inspiration to mystics, artists and poets over the ages. Allow her to be a source of comfort, healing and inspiration to you now as well.
Practical Exercise: See if you can to be aware of what phase the moon is in right now. The different phases represent different phases of your menstrual cycle from a new cycle, to ovulation and bleeding and they are also linked to the cycles within nature and symbolic of the universal cycle of birth, life and death/transformation.
Connect with the moon by:
- Listening to my Moon Fertility meditation on InsightTimer
(Please know it does not matter what phase the moon is currently in, nor where about you are in your menstrual cycle in order to benefit from this meditation. Our intention is to balance the female energies and increase fertility and I encourage you to repeat this meditation and keep this intention throughout your cycle to bring meaning and deep transformation into your life.)
- Wearing a piece of Moonstone Jewelry or keep a piece of this beautiful stone by your bed at night.
- Look up at the night sky each evening and notice the moon and what phase it is in.
- Keep a moon journal - not your cycle, moods and phases of the moon and use this journal to note your dreams and express yourself creatively.
- Spend time outdoors during full moon, bathing in the moonlight.
- Tune in to your intuition and nurturing, creative, receptive female energy.
- Perform the Moon Salutation / Chandra Namaskar Yoga Sequence
- Perform Chandra Bhedana Pranayama breathing exercise where you will inhale through your left nostril and exhale through the right:
Our left nostril is symbolically associated with our body's cooling, silver energy, symbolized by the "Moon" and the syllable THA. When practicing Chandra Bhedana, which involves inhaling through the left nostril, you will notice your mind slows down and you feel emotionally calmer and mentally soothed. It has a cooling effect on the body reducing conditions such as heartburn, high blood pressure, inflammation, fever and poor concentration. (Do not perform Chandra Bhedana if you have asthma, flu or low blood pressure) Always try to practice breath work after yoga asanas and on an empty stomach. Maintain the ratio of inhalation, retention and exhalation as 1:4:2. For beginners do not hold your breath and keep the ratio 1:2 for inhalation and exhalation
- Start seated in an upright comfortable position with a straight spine and have your right hand in the Visnu Mudra which is the same hand position that you use for Nadi Sodhana. Here you bring your pointer and middle fingers toward your palm while keeping the other fingers and thumb extended.
- Block your right nostril by placing your thumb against your nasal passage.
- Slowly inhale through the left nostril. Count while you breathe in deeply and fully.
- Pause for four seconds at the top of your inhalation.
- Release the right nostril and block the leftnostril with your two fingers.
- Exhale through the right nostril. Count while you exhale so that your exhalation should take longer than your inhale.
This is one round/set.
If you are new to this kind of breathing, just begin with 6 - 10 sets and slowly increase the number of breath sets and overall duration of your breath work over time. There is no rush.