Moon Rituals: Guidelines for healing through the moon phases


Moon Rituals: Guidelines for healing through the moon phases

A few years ago I gifted my husband with two backpacking trips. Normally, he’d be the one to research trails and sign up for permits and I’d just go along for the ride. I love nature but at the end of the day, I prefer a warm, fluffy bed to camping so it was a real treat and a big surprise when I presented the backpacking trips I had planned to him. 

One of the trips I planned was in Joshua Tree in a palm oasis. There were no rules or restrictions on where we could park our tent so we found a nice place a decent way off the main trail nestled in a little canyon. 

Heading out of the city to camp in the middle of nowhere, in the desert, I was super excited to see some vivid stars. We set up our tent and opted to keep the fly off, the cover that protects the tent from rain and wind, so we could get a better view of the stars. 

As the sun set, I was so excited as the stars began to come out. Stargazing is something I used to do as a kid. I’d fall asleep on the dock in Norther Michigan under piles of blankets with my sisters as we counted shooting stars. 

I sat in my portable chair, passing a flask back and forth between us as we waited for the show to begin but as time passed, nothing really happened. The sky remained somewhat illuminated. It didn’t take much longer to understand why: that night there was a full moon. The moon’s rays were so bright not only did it mute the stars, we might as well have parked our tent just under a street lamp. It was so bright out, when I had to get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night I didn’t even need a flashlight. 

Many full moons have happened since that trip. Looking back on that time in my life so much has changed. I am not the same person I was back then and many moons will continue to pass, steadily morphing, paving a future that will distance me from the person I am today. 

We are constantly evolving as people. Celebrating new victories that launch our confidence levels or sense of empowerment forward. Letting go of old habits, people, or protocols to live by which don’t resonate anymore. 

The moon evolves with us. Constantly rebirthing herself as she diminishes into shadow and slowly growing full again over and over again. Her nature is consistent and reliable change. The change is slow but always present. 

The various phases of the moon hold different wisdom we can apply to our life to help us cope or adapt to change more readily. The moon can teach us when to plant seeds, set intentions, and create and she can help us release our worn-out habits, old belief systems, or forgotten dreams so we can create space for something new to show up in our lives. 

Over the past few years, I’ve become more interested in the moon and what she represents by simply being present. The moon doesn’t try to change. Change is simply her nature. 

There are four main stages of the moon: waxing, waning, full, and new. The following chart offers information around each phase of the moon and has a ritual you may wish to partake in during each phase.

Waxing Moon

The waxing moon is growing larger, slowly morphing into a full moon. Waxing moon phases are times to make progress on the intentions, projects, or goals set during the new moon. 

Waxing Moon Ritual

Whether you honor yourself for it or not, you do so much. Take 5-10 minutes each evening during this phase to reflect on what you’re grateful for.

Waning Moon

The waning moon is fading, or progressively becoming darker after a full moon. Waning moon phases are times to begin winding down after all the progress made leading up to the full moon. Now is the time to shed any dead weight you want to release.

Waning Moon Ritual

Nourish yourself. Taking beautiful and perfect care of your body, your mind, and your spirit. 

Consider: How would you like to be nurtured today? 

Do you need a decadent bath with salts to ease the mind, please the skin, and soothe the spirit? Would you be lifted up by some home-baked oatmeal cookies to treat the body, indulge the mind, and pamper the spirit? Do you need a night out with the girls to take a load off the mind, dress up the body, and nurture a joyful spirit?

Select a method of your choice to honor your whole being. 

Full Moon

The full moon is when she’s at full capacity. Full moons are a time for letting go or wrapping up a phase of a project or creative idea.  

Full Moon Ritual

Take a deep breath. Let go. Determine how you will let go for this ritual: Water/Drown, Earth/Bury, Fire/Burn, Air/Breath.

What do you wish to release? Create a list on paper or in your mind.

When you’re ready, destroy the list in your chosen method.

New Moon

The new moon is when she goes totally dark. This is a great time for setting intentions, goal planning, starting new projects, or putting fuel to your creative ideas. 

New Moon Ritual

This ritual is about making your dreams come true. Take several deep breaths with your eyes closed until you feel at peace and any messiness from your day has dispersed from within your mind. This may take 5-10 minutes. Give yourself space to become present.

Grab a pen + paper and reflect on the following questions. Go into as much detail as you wish. 

  • Take a birdseye look at your life as you’re experiencing it now. Today. In present time. What do you currently experience that you want more of? What do you want that you don’t currently have? Consider: What would make your life easier? 

The next time you find yourself gazing up at the moon, notice which phase she’s currently existing in. Notice how her wisdom can help you through the changes within your own life. 

Use the moon as much or as little as you need her. Because when you find yourself in the middle of nowhere and you least expect it, her light will be there to guide your path and illuminate your way. 

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Moon Rituals: Guidelines for healing through the moon phases


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