New Moon Yoga Sequence & Intention Setting Rituals
I'm excited to feature one of my yoga guides and personal friend Audra Goforth on the blog this week! Not only will she share her recurring moon rituals, but also lead you through a moon salutation sequence that you can work into your own practice. Enjoy!
With the next new moon on the horizon (Sept 9th), it’s a good idea to become familiar with new moon and full moon practices. While many – yogis and non-yogis alike – tend to have their own moon cycle ritual, it is fun to incorporate that practice into your yoga flow.
Chandra Namaskara (moon salutation) is similar to that of Surya Namaskar (sun salutation) in the sense it is a great way to begin a yoga practice with gentle movement. Sun salutation brings heat into the body, while the moon salutation is a cooling flow. Think of sun salutation being your yang and moon salutation as your yin – the balance and unity of the two are vital.
The moon salutation has a few variations, but the most common practice goes as follows:
Mountain Pose → With a side stretch to the left and right
Side Squat or Side Lunge
Side Squat/Lunge on opposite leg
This flow pattern will carry you around your mat in a circular motion.
***We filmed a short video of the sequence and also took pictures breaking it down step-by-step towards the end of this post.***
What makes Chandra Namaskara so special is the quiet and calming movements that allow you to draw your attention inward. The new moon is a time to set intentions or goals and to ask the Universe or Divine for the things we’d like to see come into our lives. The full moon is quite the opposite where we release the things that no longer serve a purpose in our lives. This particular salutation practice allows you to focus inward and become self aware of the things you want or need to release.
Interested in moon rituals? I personally keep a moon journal. It is this small notebook where I write 2-5 things I’d like to have for the new moon (goals, needs, etc.) and 2-5 things I want to let go of (people, things, emotions, etc.).
When asking the Universe and Divine for things during a new moon, I don’t say “I want” or “give me,” but instead I say “I am ready,” “I am excited for,” “I am hopeful for” and so forth. After I have decided on 2-5 things that I am going to ask for, I write down each item in a complete sentence, say each one out loud three times, and ask for it in my heart three times. I then conclude the practice by saying “This, or something better, now manifests for the highest good of all concerned.”
When releasing what no longer serves me during the full moon, I choose 2-5 things that I feel no longer serves a positive purpose in my life, doesn’t provide me joy, or brings negative emotions. I write each item down by saying “I will release,” “I am letting go of,” or “I am sending away.” I then say each item out loud three times, and release them from my heart. I conclude the practice by saying “I cleanse and release all energy that is no longer mine to carry. I shed and clean myself of any pains of the past and release myself from any guilts or regrets that are weighing me down. I cleanse myself so I can be light and free. I cleanse myself with light and loving energy.”
During my moon rituals and practices, I like to play gentle music, have low light (candles or salt lamps are perfect), I bring out all my crystals as well as my favorite seashell and a plant to represent fire, water, earth, and air elements. I tend to spend an hour to my practice through a moon salutation flow and time to write as well as mediate. I know of some who like to sage their space before hand, and energize their crystals in moon light.
No moon ritual is perfect for everyone, so find a flow that works best for you. Maybe it’s journaling, meditating, praying, or completing a moon salutation yoga flow. Find what is best for you and remember how precious it is to be connected to the Universe and the Divine.
With full blessings.
–Audra @audrago4th *Goforth & Grow*