Although I don’t subscribe to any particular religion, I do find value in certain spiritual practices that help me to become quieter inside, to reflect, and to express gratitude. When you have been through many turbulent experiences, any opportunity for peace is welcomed with open arms.
Over recent years I have been trying out different rituals to discover what works for me and what doesn’t. Some of those include meditation, journaling and yoga. I try to spend more time outside, whether it is pottering in my garden or going for walks alone or with my children. All of these help me to be more aware of the world around me: the changing seasons, solar and lunar cycles, the impermanence of everything.
Maybe it is a sign of growing older, but I try to approach life with more care and consideration. I frequently fail, but that is not the point, it is the intention that matters and that creates change slowly over a long period of time.
One ritual that I try to remember to do each full moon, when my mind is (hopefully) calm and clear after meditation, is to contemplate the moon.
The full moon is so often used in poetic art and literature as a symbol for all kinds of things including wholeness, wisdom, balance. It lights up the night sky by way of its partnership with the sun, without which there would be no moonlight. It is a symbol of powerful but subtle collaboration. The moon at its fullest, has the greatest power to inspire us mere mortals.
The moon is a loyal companion. It never leaves. It’s always there, watching, steadfast, knowing us in our light and dark moments, changing forever just as we do. Every day it’s a different version of itself. Sometimes weak and wan, sometimes strong and full of light. The moon understands what it means to be human. Uncertain. Alone. Cratered by imperfections.”
~ Tahereh Mafi
With my eyes closed I see in my mind its subtle glow as it reflects down on the earth, and I imagine all of us human beings below becoming infused with the moon’s peace, tranquility and wisdom.
Mind is the Master power that moulds and makes,
And Man is Mind, and evermore he takes
The tool of Thought, and, shaping what he wills,
Brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills: —
He thinks in secret, and it comes to pass:
Environment is but his looking-glass.
~ James Allen