The Yoga Girl® Guide to Creating a New Moon Ritual
As the moon pulls on the tides, the energy of the moon has a direct energetic effect on us as well!
We are made up of 70% water, and the push and pull of the planets, cosmos, and astrological weather can be felt as an ebb and flow of energy within us. Connecting with the energies of the lunar cycles, we can get into alignment and elevate our connection to the entire universe. Working with the lunar cycles can be a great place to start working with the energy of the cosmos, but it doesn't end there. The energy and power of the Universe is vast and mysterious, with endless practices and possibilities to connect and deepen in every aspect of our lives.
The new and full moons are a great time to create ritual and ceremony around working with the energy of the lunar cycles.
The energy can begin to build a few days leading up to the new or full moon, and last for a few days after the lunation as well, so don’t worry if you don’t do your ritual or ceremony that exact day! Do what works for you with where you're at.
While a full moon is a symbol of completion of a cycle, a new moon is a time for clearing, letting go doubts, fears, insecurities, relationships, behavioral patterns, or anything not serving your highest potential to clear space for bigger things to come.
The newness of the moon helps to clear old ways of being and set intentions for the incoming lunar cycle. The medicine of the new moon lies in clearing space, letting go of what is not serving you, and setting intentions that align with your deepest truth and your soul’s purpose.
Using these energies to help you release anything holding you back will help to support you while creating a new foundation for the upcoming lunar cycle.
It is a fertile time to get really clear on what you want to nourish, grow, and align with, while planting energetic seeds of intention, and creating an action plan to work through during the new lunar cycle.
The days leading up to a new moon are called the balsamic phase. It begins when the crescent moon is 45 degrees behind the sun. During this phase, the skies are dark, so we go within our own darkness; to clear, make space, heal, listen to our intuition, and set new cycles in motion.
You can practice a new moon ritual on the days leading up to, the day of, or the days following the new moon.
There are many different ways to practice the art and beauty of ritual, and below are some of the most powerful and potent ways to work with the energies of the new moon cycle. You can break these exercises up or complete them all at once. Listen to your body and your spirit, give yourself rest when you need to, and allow your creativity to come forth as well!
When you are ready, first create a sacred space for yourself.
Find a quiet, private place, and set yourself up. Wear light, comfortable clothes that make you feel cozy, soft and relaxed. Dim the lights if you'd like, grab some pillows, a blanket, and get comfortable. Use your favorite essential oil on your emotional points; the back of the ears, chest, inner wrists, naval, and soles of the feet.
While creating your sacred space, think about incorporating the 4 main elements; earth, air, water, and fire.
For earth, bring your favorite crystals to your ritual; moonstone can be used to activate the wisdom of the moon, selenite is great for clearing, and labradorite is great for grounding. You can also choose whatever crystals you are being drawn to in the moment (which probably is a signal that you need that crystal's particular energy right now to assist you.)
If you do not have any crystals, you can use whatever you have at home that is sacred, special, or that you feel called to bring into your space. It doesn’t have to be a crystal.
It can be a flowers, feathers, mala beads, statues of deities or photos of teachers, anything that is meaningful to you. These items will help you in activating the wisdom of the moon, your guides, and your Highest Self.
For air, light some incense, palo santo, copal, sage, etc. - anything you have on hand to smudge and clear the energy around you and in the room. If burning isn't possible, inviting some fresh air into your space by opening a window works too.
For water, bring something to drink! Water or a good cup of tea works well to connect with this element. You could also bring something from the sea, such as a seashell.
Finally, fire. To start the ceremony, light a candle and recite or think to yourself a prayer of some sort. Even if you are not particularly religious or spiritual, sending a prayer of gratitude, love, hope, or healing to someone in the world, the world as a whole, or perhaps even to yourself to soften and set the tone for your sacred space you've just created.
After you've created your sacred space, invite the energy and power of the four directions in and cleanse your sacred space as a whole. Using a small bowl of salt water and the starting with the East-facing wall or corner, sprinkle a bit of the salt water while invoking the power and energy of each of the four directions. You can do this by reciting a small invokation or prayer to call upon and invite each directional energy into your space. Repeat and continue moving clockwise while facing South, West, and finally North. Then...
Take a few moments to breathe.
Use the breath to balance out the two hemispheres of the brain and to clear the emotional and mental body. Our favorite Pranayama practices are alternate nostril breathing, breath of fire, or any controlled breathing techniques. Once your space is set and you are feeling grounded, it's time to move onto the next part.
In order to clear your mind and better align your energy, it’s also important to do a little movement to release any excess tension, drop into the breath, and anchor into alignment with your mind, body and soul.
You can drop into gentle movement such as with restorative Yoga, you can dance, take a short walk, practice the more feminine Moon Salutations if you wish, or any other movement that feels good for you in the moment; whatever your preferred form of exercise is, take a bit of time to clear your energy before you begin your ceremony so you have more clarity and focus.
Once you have set your space and have given your body a chance to release, give yourself some time to journal on and process anything you feel holding you back, triggering you, not serving you, making you feel small, or anything you want to let go of.
Practice stream of consciousness journaling and just let it all out; let it all flow onto the paper until you feel a shift, a lightness of being, or that you have gotten EVERYTHING out and onto the paper. Release, release, release.
Then, take that paper and read aloud what it is that you want to let go of.
Give it energy with your voice and set the intention from your heart to let go of all that is not serving you, clearing space for your incoming new moon intentions. When you're ready, in a safe (and well-ventilated ) space, light that paper on fire. Go outside and under the darkness of the moon, light that sh#t on fire and let it GO!
Bring your hands over your heart, take a few deep breaths and return to your sacred space.
Notice if you feel lighter, liberated, or energized. Sit with your breath and your presence and allow yourself to integrate into your new, lighter energetic space.
After some time has passed and you feel ready, begin to focus on any areas of your life that you want to nurture.
Get super clear on your intentions, what you want to grow, nourish, see flourish, or thrive; any and all of your dreams and desires. Do the same stream of consciousness writing exercise, but this time dreaming BIG. Let your imagination run wild with the infinite possibilities of being! Even journal on specific areas of your life, such as work, your health, relationships, your spiritual practice, or your home life. Whatever needs your attention, now is the time to get clear on what you want.
When you feel like you have gotten super clear and everything is out on paper, take a deep breath and allow yourself to really focus.
Anchor into your heart space and read your intentions aloud, breathing life into them and their planting energetic seeds into the fertile new moon portal.
When you are finished, take a moment to honor your practices. Take that paper and set it on your altar so you can be reminded of your intentions for the new moon lunar cycle. Take a few moments to settle into your space with your hands on your heart to seal the ritual and perhaps after the sun sets, take some time to sit in silence under the dark sky while your consciousness integrates all you have just created from within.
When complete, be sure to drink lots of water and get adequate rest.
These are deeply regenerative energies to be working with, which can sometimes be quite emotional. It’s important to let yourself rest after these exercises in order to allow the energy to settle and re-align itself. Diffuse calming essential oils, take a long bath, take a nap, take a walk in nature, go to sleep earlier than usual; whatever you need to do to settle down, refresh, and renew yourself.
What are some of your new moon intentions? Let us know in the comments below! Happy New Moon!