The moon like a flower,
In heaven’s high bower
With silent delight
Sits and smiles on the night.
18th Century English
Humans have contemplated and celebrated the workings of the world since the beginning of time. The moon, being Earth’s (almost) constant companion, has always held a universally mesmerizing and mysterious appeal. The full moon, with is silvery bright and glimmering light is climatic and in essence represents the breadth of life. As we set our sights onto that profusion of light shining within the darkness, perhaps it stirs something within us and reminds us that we too can reach our fullest potential.
To constantly be aware of life’s grandeur, I’m always seeking ways to engage more deliberately. In so doing, over the years I’ve developed some routines to celebrate and appreciate the arrival of this utmost moony night. With an understanding that we are all seeking connection on a deeper level, I thought I’d share a few of these practices with you. I hope it stirs your own creative spirit and if nothing else, entices you to pause more often and just breathe in the beauty that surrounds us and connects us all.
1. Take a walk. Grab your binoculars, head outside and take in a relaxing stroll. A full moon hike is about the easiest way to invest in this ephemeral night. Blandy Experimental Farm in Boyce, Virginia, frequently offers guided walks through the arboretum on full moon nights.
2. Develop a meditation practice. Studies showing the benefits of meditation are now commonplace and we should all strive to find a way to incorporate such a practice within our daily lives. If you are new to meditation and would like some guidance visit Jake or Shell. You could also consider the full moon as a friendly, monthly gesture, for introspection and evaluation of your future plans and goals.
3. Create a playlist of songs about the moon. Currently, I’m listening to these songs. Of course, there are many more out there so create your own list based on your own musical interests. On the Harvest Moon – my personal favorite of the year – I’m always spinning Neil Young’s infamous record. What are some songs you’d include on your playlist?
4. Make Moonbeam Kisses. One afternoon, while reading through a 1949 Culinary Arts Institute cookbook, I ran across a recipe called moonbeam kisses. Imagine my delight! I adapted my recipe from the one in that book using maple syrup instead of sugar. You could probably also use honey with good success. Food connects us all so it just makes sense to seek out or create your own unique dishes and drinks as an ode to that silvery thatch.
5. Develop your knowledge of Astronomy. Consider some ways which you can increase your own understanding of our universe. Attend a star party or join an astronomy club. James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, has a fascinating planetarium that I’ve wanted to visit. There is also numerous sky watching apps that you can download to your phone, which will show you what’s above you in the night sky.
While the moon may be almost a quarter of a million miles away, it still holds immense influence on us earth dwellers. Invoke your inner Galileo and consciously create some fun ways to celebrate this grand, moonthly occasion.
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Tammy Batcha is a life-long resident of the Shenandoah Valley. A long-time commuter, she seeks to reconnect to her community. A board certified, health and wellness coach, she continues to study integrative nutritional theory while guiding others on a path to wellness.