Last night’s full moon was absolutely breathtaking. Did any of you see it?

This particular full moon is called the “snow moon,” because usually accompanied by heavy snows in the Northern Hemisphere, or the “full hunger moon,” because our ancestors found hunting scarce in February.  It is also called the “Virgo full moon,” and signifies a time of taking care of ourselves and observing how we look after ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually, recognizing what it is we are called to do, and helps us learn discernment about what we are and what we aren’t. This particular full moon is considered potent at stirring the emotional waters.  It symbolizes where we are asked to become the person we are meant to be.  “So our task is to think differently, to open our intuitive brains, to listen to our feelings…the mind must understand our desire for peace and unity; we must learn to trust that our unique identity will not be lost when we foster unity; and we must let Love guide our vision…”

I didn’t know all this stuff about last night’s full moon until I researched it a bit more today, and it’s interesting that it ties in perfectly to what I had shared in yoga yesterday and what I’ve been trying to put into words for classes this week.   Hang with me here; I promise it will all be tied in together. 🙂

Backbends and heart-opening poses in yoga can be challenging.  From a physical perspective, one must really elongate the tailbone towards the ground to keep the lower vertebra from crunching, and one must use the strength of the core and obliques to lift the ribcage high up off the waistline to allow for the thoracic spine to arch.  Softening back the shoulders and lifting the sternum can feel like your heart is about to burst open to the ceiling.

One of my mentors in my yoga teacher training taught me that we can learn a lot about ourselves by how we react emotionally to a yoga pose.   For instance, if you’re in a curled up position (like half-tortoise or rabbit) and gazing inward at your navel or heart, pause and try to feel what emotions are going on inside of you.  If you feel anxious to get out of the pose, or if you feel uneasy, or stressed, then perhaps it could mean you’re afraid to stop and introspect. Maybe you’re so busy helping others with their problems that you hide and ignore your own issues and struggles.  Maybe you’re uncomfortable to be alone with yourself.  Maybe you’re afraid of what you’ll find if you dive inside the deepest corners of your heart and soul.  Then on the other end of the spectrum, let’s for instance look at backbends or poses where your heart is pressed up to the ceiling, open, vulnerable.  If you feel anxious to get out of the pose, or uneasy, then perhaps it could mean you’re afraid to show your heart to the world, to put it out on the line, or afraid to let some worry or fear float up and out of your chest and into the universe to handle from here on out.  Maybe you’re used to hiding your heart, or never sharing your whole heart in relationships.  Maybe you are ridden with reservations or feelings of inadequacy or feelings of doubt that if anyone knew every fiber of your heart they wouldn’t want you.

Bringing this all full-circle (or full moon, hehe, pardon my cheesiness), when we backbend we are confronted with our own vulnerability.  And when we accept ourselves, every part of ourselves, and discern who we are and what we’re here to give, and then put our heart out there, I guaran-freakin-tee you will get back what you put out a million fold.  Vulnerability means greater connection.  We become who we are meant to be, without fear of losing our unique identity in the unity.  Let the moon right now tug on your heart-strings. Be brave and burst your heart up into the sky.

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