sun-and-moon

The sun and the moon at sunrise.
Outerbanks 2013

Those who know me well know that I have a secret love affair with the moon (and now you know too). There is something about how it draws me in- it could be the faith that is always there, even if you cannot see it, it can always be felt. It could be that it lights up the sky and makes all the stars shine so much brighter, or it quite possibly could be that it balances so many systems that we use to live, breath, connect and exist.
Beyond all of my reasons to be fascinated with the moon, it is also my teacher on love- a subject I have chosen to get very intimate with this year, especially with the purpose of applying it to my yoga practice both on and off the mat. So here are the lovely lessons I have learned from the moon- those of which have allowed me to be more open, accepting, giving, and receiving, including the love I have for myself, a much necessary step along the way.

 “Where there is love there is life.”  – Mahatma Gandhi

As I have gotten close to the subject of love, I have realized that just like the moon, love is something you feel, even if you do not see it at first, it is always there, it is what we are made of. Love is the only way and it is life- it is the ups and downs- it is the faith in believing that love will conquer all- just takes a strong heart, a deep belief and the trust to act and put yourself out there. It is not an easy task, but love takes action. When acted upon, the ripples can reach far beyond what we can see. Sometimes it starts with a smile, while other times, it takes it digging deep, trusting in what you feel and going for it.  If love is guiding you and you are not expecting anything in return, you can’t go wrong.

“One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.”  – Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

Remember a time when you were in love or when you looked in a child’s eyes and just felt complete magic, when time stood still and everything just made sense. Doesn’t your world just light up?  You feel this intense magic because you, at that moment and the moments to follow, are in tune with one of the deepest levels of connection we can (and are so lucky) to experience anytime we wish. In these moments, we are aware, accepting and totally exposed.  When we love with all our heart, we are completely vulnerable, we are open to the potential of losing this feeling, of being hurt or rejected.  It is completely scary to make yourself that vulnerable. I mean, what would happen if that hole in your heart was left empty, if your whole world came crashing down?
What if I told you that the only one that can fill that void, that hole, is you, and that you have complete power over making love, your own love that is, your priority. Let’s take it to lesson three, this one needs a little bit of tipping the scales to find balance.

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”  –  Laozi

As wonderful as it is to love and be loved, why does it go wrong? Sometimes we get out of balance. We either do not love ourselves enough and/or expect more then we need leading to disappointment, sadness, loneliness and a host of other negative feelings. This lesson so gracefully shown by the moon as it rises and falls at the exact time it needs to each day to balance out with the sun.  Finding this balance within ourselves starts with being present, shining bright and loving yourself, your strengths, your weaknesses, your tendencies, believe me, it is all good and well worth love, but you must believe it yourself first before anyone else will.  Second, know when to let go, to accept what is right in front of you and to draw back in certain cases to allow the light of others to shine. Just as the moon pushes and pulls the tides, love is learning the delicate balance between giving and receiving.
We all know very loving people that give everything of them-selves and get burnt out very easily, though the intention is right on, the scale is off balance and will never even out until, they (you in certain cases) find your first love- yourself and learn to dance with the tides!  Others will give what they can, and it is your job to fill the rest- to make yourself whole, including your heart. And believe me, loving yourself is so okay and much needed, especially now- you deserve this and the time to act, the time to love is now.

Loving points to remember:

  • Take time to honor what you need first and take gentle care to go about it. This could mean by the food you eat, the dedication to your art,  the time to exercise/movement, the desire to share your passion/work- whatever it is and I hope it is a little of each, take the time, go there- be the person you want to be loved so deep.
  • Get real with the love you need back and do not expect it all to come from one person.
  • Choose love over fear, even in the darkest moments, love will always find a way to pull through, it is a universal law.
  • Make others happiness a priority, share that last bit of that lovely dessert (always share the last bite).
  • Spend time with others that love and appreciate what you do- build a community that can support each other.
  • Let go of expectations, trust you will get back what you put out there in ways you never imagined.
  • Find your own fullness; and you will find abounding love.
  • Believe in love.
  • Know you are already loved and you are already there.

No matter where you are in the world, no matter what is going on in your world, know that you can always look up to the moon, feel loved, be love and once you are there- send the love right back! To your journey, may it always be filled with light, peace, joy and LOVE!!!