Every month at Hamsa features a different aspect of the divine feminine through meditation, breath & sound. This is inspired by Sri Mayatitananda’s teaching of the Nitya Devi as Monica Yearwood learned from one of her teachers Linda Sarita Rocco.
Ayurveda is the practice of observing these rhythms and aligning ourselves with them. Much of it is commonsensical: sleeping at appropriate times, eating foods in season, etc. But as commonsensical as it may seem to be, in practice it can be quite difficult to do.
As women, we have additional senses of rhythm that connect us to the cycles of the moon. Each month, a woman’s body has the ability to cleanse and rejuvenate itself through her menses. It used to be in traditional cultures, that women would menstruate together during the dark night of the new moon. During this time they would gather to support one another in a journey of deep introspection.
In Ayurveda, the shakti prana of every woman exists in her womb. Her strength is found here and affects her on every level of her health. The cycles, the wax and wane, the natural emotional flow of the female is regarded as sacred. During the new moon time, the natural period of menstruation, when a woman journeys inward is valued as such. Each month a woman is invited to take advantage of her sacred time of natural purification by going inward, extending her meditation, refraining from intense activities, and allowing herself to rest.
When we do not take advantage of this time, we threaten the vital shakti prana that exists inside us. We disturb our energy levels and we step out of sync with the natural harmony that attempts to guide us. How often as women do we ignore the call to just rest? How many of us as women ignore our menstrual cycles and pretend it is not happening, perceive it as an inconvenience, and tend to business as usual?
Do we allow ourselves to break, or do we keep up with our rigorous exercise programs, work and family obligations? Do we honor menstrual cramps or pains or do we sneer at the inconvenience and reach for pain medications? Most importantly, do we have support from the community around us? Do the men in our lives honor us? Do the sisters in our lives commune with us?
Every month, a woman has the natural ability to shed toxins, emotions, and physical blocks that no longer serve her. Her body cleanses and rejuvenates itself during her menses, during the period of the dark moon.
The full moon also has its energetic advantages. It calls us forth to activity, ceremony, new projects, overcoming obstacles, and using external energy. By taking advantage of this natural fluctuation, by resting more during new moon and participating in externally motivated activities during the full moon, we heighten our shakti prana and enhance our inner harmony.
General Observations & Practices For the Moon Cycle
New Moon Time (no moon in the sky)- Stillness and quietude. Rest, eat simple foods, refrain from extensive cooking, journal, practice self-inquiry. Sacred time that requires rest, and allowing the natural process of detoxification. At the very least, this is the most ideal time to check-in and ask, “How am I doing and how do I feel?” It is the most powerful time to set intentions for the rest of the month. Practices for the new moon:
- Journaling Intentions for the month
- Body Scanning
- Deep breathing contemplations “What do I need?”
- Reading a book that provokes inquiry.
- Spending a ½ day alone or in silence.
- Walking alone, in nature.
- Extra time meditating
Full Moon Time- The moon has gained every aspect of the divine feminine and has culminated in the full expression of the Goddess. The full moon is named Lalita; she is the embodiment of all feminine attributes. Meditating on her awakens her within our self. Through a dedicated goddess worship practice, we realize these aspects are not external expressions; rather as women we embody them within our own being.
Full moon time is the culminated outward expression that builds from the seeds that were planted during new time. If there were negative impressions realized during new moon time, this is the optimal time to ritualistically release them. If there were intentions written down, this is the ideal time to do something loud to assert them.
Cook an elaborate meal, celebrate with friends!