Oh, this MOON, piercing the black night sky and sweetening the pastel hues of the morning. It’s the hunter’s moon, I’ve also seen the full moon called the traveller’s moon. It’s magical.
It feels true to me… I’ve been looking for sustenance, open to what this season uniquely reveals. I’ve been covering miles, soaking in the what feels like the last of the sunshine, the smells and the colors of the fall. And, I’ve been planning my winter trips as I hear the geese overhead navigating theirs.
We’re two weeks from the last New Moon practice and two weeks from the next. Are you midway? Are your intentions still strong? For me, there’s just been a rising need for that clarity and, the framework that I sketched out at the beginning of the month has just found its way back to the surface. I’m glad that I took the time then to prepare for now.
Are you noticing a shift in your energy too? Sometimes at the middle of a cycle we find energy increased… sometimes that is pleasant, sometimes less pleasant. Think back to the Summer Solstice, look to Wednesdays, how is your energy at noon?
Sometimes the extra energy is inspiring, motivating, clarifying. Sometimes it’s agitating. Either way, it is a pathway to poise.
Watch these cycles and learn more about your patterns. Our power is in our awareness and in our ability to support these natural processes… moon waxing and waning, sun rising and setting, energy rising and falling.
From inertia through action to poise we move. With balance between stimulation and relaxation we gain perspective, and the power to choose.
In meditation and mindfulness circles we use the framework: unpleasant, neutral, pleasant to help orient to our emotional state.
The neutral state is the position of power. It is from there that we can more clearly see the full range, and choose. When you notice sensation arising (it could be a sound, a thought, a feeling or any other point of awareness) see if you can find it a place on this scale. In further reflection and in a broader context, see if you can find complementary potential elsewhere on the scale.
Here’s an example from my practice this month: I’ve been abstaining from intoxicants. It’s an intentional practice, related to retreat, that allows me to uncover motivation behind consumption and encourage broader perspective. When a situation arises in which I might usually have a beer or a glass of wine I have felt annoyed, regretful and silly for imposing this restriction. These are relatively unpleasant emotions. When I stop from getting too caught up in those thoughts, I can also see confidence, pride, and positive growth in the experience. These are relatively pleasant. I land (on the somewhat shaky ground) that is neutral.
The more we practice like this, especially with particularly charged experiences, the more we can diffuse the wild fluctuations that sometimes throw us off course.
If you’re curious about something, just watch it more closely. If it’s skittish, be quiet and still, patient, respectful, maybe even playful with it. Try using more of your senses to gather information and then see if you can find some of the “tone” that comes with the awareness. That’s back to the pleasant, neutral, unpleasant framework.
I’m working with folks in Anchorage this fall and you’re welcome to join us for the New Moon practice on the last Sunday afternoon of October or November. It’s a mini-retreat with time for movement, rest and reflection and, some very sweet company!
Please register in advance, click here to check on availability.