Here at Balance Garden we are really interested in the inherent cycles of the natural world such as the changing of the seasons, the phases of the moon, and our own human trajectory through our monthly cycles and different phases of life.
The seasons take us on a journey through renewal, abundance, death and dormancy over the course of the year. Similar patterns of change are seen in the lunar cycle as the moon waxes and wanes; Sometimes full, bright, and abundant and at other times small, subtle and barely there. Humans too move through their own cycles and fluctuations; Sometimes full of energy and creativity, and at other times barren of ideas, tired and introspective.
We are beautifully complex beings- there is a lot to unpack in the search for self-realisation and it can seem totally overwhelming to even begin to understand your own changeability. Learning to reference the cycles of the natural world around you, paying attention to the qualities and energies that are present, and reflecting on how our internal landscapes mirror them can, therefore, offer a manageable and illuminating way to start sifting systematically through the multiple layers of Self- resulting in deeper insight and understanding.
There are many- including me- who feel that the moon affects our behaviour, but you don't necessarily need to subscribe to that belief to benefit from the contemplations laid out below if you can just recognise that each phase of the seasons/lunar cycle/etc. symbolises a different set of characteristics/facets/aspects that can be conceptualised and used as a framework to consider those same aspects within ourselves.
The time of the Full Moon, for instance, is associated with the archetypal figure of The Mother. You don’t need to be a mother, have an archetypal mother, or to ever want to be a mother to connect with her, instead you can just draw on the qualities associated with her and how they manifest in your own life. The beautiful thing about working with archetypes is that they do not rely on previous experiences for definition, they are for you to ponder and integrate in your own way, irrespective of the ‘mothers’ that you have encountered through your life and whether, or more likely not, they have lived up to these archetypal expectations.
The Mother archetype embodies the birthing and nurturing not just of children, but also of ideas/projects/passions. In all her glory The Mother is attentive, present, and caring; Evenhandedly overseeing her offspring, projects, and creations with wisdom; knowing when to intervene and invest energy and when to step back and simply let things take their course. She understands not only the value but also the necessity of heartfelt care for self and others, without controlling or possessing, in order for them to thrive and flourish. And she is powerful, she has the means to bring life into the world and to teach and oversee with great wisdom and experience.
So this full moon, experiment with contemplating the archetype of The Mother and see what it illuminates for you. Some suggestions are below, but it's in no way an exhaustive list.
Spend time in nature, the ultimate Mother of us all, contemplating the sheer majesty of life that surrounds us. Take some time to look at the full moon, to witness its fullness and luminosity. Identify and enjoy those same qualities with yourself. This offering of words from Plum Village to Mother Earth might resonate.
Nurture yourself; Identify areas in your life that could benefit from more care and attention. Take time to nourish your body with healthy and nutritious food, have a long soak in the tub and condition and feed your skin with luxurious oils and balms. Invest time in creating spaces in your home that feel welcoming to you and that you can truly relax in.
Connect with your own resourcefulness and personal power, are you allowing yourself to step into it? Or are you holding back because of old ideas about needing to be selfless/a martyr/less than. Learn a new skill, or step out of your comfort zone in order to really come face to face with your capabilities and wisdom.
Once you have spent some time directing care and attention inwards, filling up your own cup, you should have more capacity and energy to offer the same qualities outwards to friends or strangers in need of time and attention.
Remember The Mother is wise and knowing, tap into that internal wisdom to make the choices that really serve you.
Enjoy! I'd love to hear of your experiences working with archetypes and whether you find this sort of contemplation useful and/or interesting.
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