Every New Moon*
Every new moon reminds me that whole worlds exist before we can see them. This truth deeply guides my work.
My new moon practice began a decade ago, sparked by the simple practices of breath, stance, and awareness that my adopted teacher, Norma Wong, calls us to. Norma nurtures strategy that keenly assesses present conditions, awakens ancestral wisdom, and generates radical hope and courageous love. This is the kind of strategy our present conditions demand.
My new moon practice is really simple. Before each new moon I take a moment to write down an intention, double checking that my intention hasn’t morphed into a goal. (Goals are great, but they serve a different purpose.) Intentions are more like commitments, ways we seek to be. Last month I wrote down “nurture lineage.”
As often as I can, I try to catch a glimpse of the moon by looking through a window or opening a door to see the night sky.
As the moon waxes I look for ways to infuse my intention into my thoughts and actions. If I’m stuck in a work challenge I remind myself to ask, “What would ‘nurture lineage’ look like in this situation?” Whatever that is, I do it.
In ten years of practice, remembering my intention has never failed to guide me to renewed energy and possibility. Of course there are days when I forget, which hasn't been disastrous. But returning to my intention always grounds me in purpose.
When the full moon arrives I hold it in my heart, even if clouds or snow block the moon from view. At the full moon I shift, reflecting on the ways that my thoughts and behaviors often block my intentions. Then I pick one of those thoughts or behaviors that I’d like to let go. As the moon wanes, I focus on that shedding.
At the end of the lunar month I celebrate what remembering my intention made true and possible. Then I tear off a slip of paper and write down my next new moon intention.
There is nothing new about the moon. It has been there all my life and in every life before mine, animating oceans and magnetizing space. If we choose, the moon can remind us that our power, in deep relationship with each other and the universe, is far greater than our eyes can see.
*I felt called to republish this blog today, which I originally posted on 9/18/20.