Moon Days

Both full and new moon days are observed as yoga holidays in the Ashtanga Yoga tradition. What is the reasoning behind this?

Like all things of a watery nature (human beings are about 70% water), we are affected by the phases of the moon. The phases of the moon are determined by the moon’s relative position to the sun. Full moons occur when they are in opposition and new moons when they are in conjunction. Both sun and moon exert a gravitational pull on the earth. Their relative positions create different energetic experiences that can be compared to the breath cycle. The full moon energy corresponds to the end of inhalation when the force of prana is greatest. This is an expansive, upward moving force that makes us feel energetic and emotional, but not well grounded. The Upanishads state that the main prana lives in the head. During the full moon we tend to be more headstrong.

The new moon energy corresponds to the end of exhalation when the force of apana is greatest. Apana is a contracting, downward moving force that makes us feel calm and grounded, but dense and disinclined towards physical exertion.

The Farmers Almanac recommends planting seeds at the new moon when the rooting force is strongest and transplanting at the full moon when the flowering force is strongest. Practicing Ashtanga Yoga over time makes us more attuned to natural cycles. Observing moon days is one way to recognize and honor the rhythms of nature so we can live in greater harmony with it.

2015

December
Thursday 24th – full

2016

January
Saturday 9th – new
Saturday 23rd – full

February
Monday 8th – new
Monday 22nd- full

March
Tuesday 8th – new
Tuesday 22nd – full

April
Wednesday 6th – new
Thursday 21st – full

May
Friday 6th – new
Saturday 21st – full

June
Saturday 4th – new
Sunday 19th – full

July
Sunday 3rd – new
Tuesday 19th – full

August
Tuesday 2nd – new
Wednesday 17th  – full
Wednesday 31st – new

September
Friday 16th – full
Friday 30th – new

October
Saturday 15th – full
Sunday 30th – new

November
Monday 14th – full
Monday 28th – new

December
Tuesday 13th – full
Wednesday 28th – new

ASHTANGA YOGA AT AYC

TUESDAYS WITH TIM-JI

For the past 10 days I’ve been immersed in teaching an intermediate series intensive—guiding 40 students from all over the world in an exploration of Nadi Shodana (the purification of the little rivers). The days are long—roughly 10 hours per day—hot, and grueling. Everyday is a challenge for me to... [...]

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