My interest in the moon and her cycles has been increasing steadily over the last couple of decades, to the point where I am now hosting moon circles. But people still wonder…what IS a moon circle, and how can I benefit?
Working with the energy of the moon is one of the many ways we can start to become more attuned to Mother Nature, & I am seeing more people become interested in this kind of energy work. Perhaps it’s the various lockdowns and restrictions on our personal & professional lives, or perhaps people are just becoming more open and interested in the mystical and spiritual side of life…. whatever the reason, it is becoming more and more important to reconnect ourselves to the cycles and seasons of our planet so that we can start to take greater care of her, and ourselves.
There is definitely a current backlash against the fast-paced, disposable, got to have it now in every colour, ethos of the beginning of this century. The plastic-free movement is a huge thing, we have Extinction Rebellion, we have people moving away from Big Tech and buying more locally in a more sustainable way. And having a more conscious, personal connection to the planet just reflects those needs. Connection to nature is about mindfulness, it’s about meditation, it’s about slowing down and noticing the small things and the more in tune we are to our natural surroundings and the cycles of life, the better able we are to do that. That’s all very I hear you ask, but what is a moon circle, and how will it help us do that?
Let’s start with some facts.
There are eight phases of the lunar calendar, starting with the new moon and coming all the way back around in the space of approximately 29.5 days. From new moon we move to waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, third quarter, waning crescent – and then we’re back to the new moon. Some people will also add the dark moon as the ninth phase of this cycle. It used to be only pagans and witches who followed the cycle of the moon, but now wellness coaches and holistic practitioners are also coming to realise the power that working with the lunar cycle can have on people’s wellbeing.
One of the main reasons is like the year and the moon, we too have seasons. We are not designed to be ‘on’ all the time. We can have times of action and momentum and fire in our bellies, but we also should dedicate time for rest and restoration. Working with the ebb and flow of the lunar calendar gives us a guide to do that. It makes sure we take moments of gratitude and reflection, as well as action and striving so that we are never overwhelmed. It allows us to be resilient as we are not burnt out from doing all the things, all the time.
When we come together in circle, what we mean is that we are gathering with like-minded people for a particular purpose. A moon circle then is a gathering of people – usually women – who are there to harness the power of the moon at a particular stage. The most common types are full moon circles and new moon circles.
The Full Moon occurs when the sun and moon are on opposite sides of the earth so that the light from the sun fully illuminates it. Think about when you take a photo of someone – you want them to be standing facing the window, not in front of it so they are lit well. The moon is actually only illuminated by the sun 100% for a few minutes, but from our perspective, it seems like the moon is full for a few days. It is said that the energy of the full moon lasts from 2/3 days on either side of the official date and time.
Moon circles will all differ depending on who is facilitating, but during my Full Moon Circle, I lead you in some seasonal yoga, some gratitude meditation, and some ritual for releasing anything that no longer serves. The evening is very relaxing, and the room tends to resemble an awesome slumber party! You will leave feeling incredibly calm, free of anything that has been troubling you, and grateful for all the things you have managed to achieve and call in that month.
The new moon occurs when the moon is on the same side of the earth as the sun, which is why the moon can’t be seen. Think of the photograph analogy again – if you have the person with the window behind them when you press click, they will appear very dark. Again, the energy of the new moon is said to be still around 2 to 3 days either side of the main event.
The new moon is a time for new beginnings, so during the New Moon Circle, I shall lead you in some energising yoga, some manifesting visualisation, and some ritual for intention setting. You will leave feeling fired up, excited for the future and ready to take on the world!
So, now you know! What is a moon circle will have different answers depending on who you ask and who will be leading it. To try one out for yourself you could always come to one of mine. The Full Moon circles are in person – I’m based near London – but the New Moon Circles are online so can be enjoyed by anyone! See my website for more details.