Every month the moon silently but magnificently orbits planet earth. The reflection of light from the sun gets brighter and fuller each day as the moon begins to once again light up the night sky. Alongside the beauty and magic of the full moon there are also all sorts of phenomena, stories, news reports and incidents that associate the full moon with strange and even crazy human behaviour.
Recently, in the middle of a chat with a sales assistant, the conversation quickly turned to the phase of the moon. He had recently experienced some intense encounters with customers, who had been what he described as moody, aggressive and rude. He looked at me and said, “It must be close to full moon!”.
It is commonplace to hear people talking about the effects of the full moon. From increases in violence, aggression and unusual behaviour, through to car accidents, fights, hospital admissions and arrests, the full moon throughout history has often been linked to strange behaviour. Even the word ‘lunatic’, which refers to a reckless, crazy person or to a mentally disturbed person, is derived from Luna, the Latin word for moon.
Hospital staff and Police Officers have long observed the effects of the period around the full moon. Police departments have been known to roster more officers on in an effort to cope with the expected increases in crime rates. Hospital staff have also faced increases in hospital admissions and emergencies when the moon is full. These are just some of the things they share (Selby, 2015):
“You could almost tell the phase of the moon by how crowded that area of the Emergency Department was. Anytime the moon was full, that area was overflowing.”
“I think people are sicker and it seems like more unusual things happen when the moon is full, though I don’t think I could ever prove it.”
“For as long as I’ve worked in the emergency department, whenever there’s a full moon, invariably someone will make a comment about how it’s going to be a rough night.”
The sales assistant mentioned above had his own stories to tell about what he had seen on full moons. Four years earlier he was witness to a brutally violent act on the night of a full moon. He was working as security at the front of a club when a fight broke out. Fists were flying, and the fight ended when a broken piece of glass was used as a weapon. What took place that evening was so disturbing for this young man that he walked away from that job never to return. He had no doubt that the full moon could trigger some very inhumane behaviour.
So what is it that the full moon’s reflection is offering us each month? The incidents described above are extreme, but on some level are we all noticing and feeling the effects of the full moon? Not necessarily always in such an extreme way, but as a more subtle or loud tension within?
The Ageless Wisdom teachings, as learnt through Universal Medicine, have inspired me to learn more about the moon, its cycles and how this both supports and affects me every month. It made total sense when I learnt that the moon has a purpose and that each month it offers us a reflection on how we have been living. The moon is naturally guiding us to return to a way of living that is true and harmonious. It’s quality and movements around the earth not only affect the tides, but also our physiology – yet another reminder of our inter-connectedness with everything.
The full moon, as I have been learning, can be a time of the month where I am asked to reflect upon how I am feeling and therefore how I have been living.
Every full moon feels very much like an opportunity to be more honest with myself and others, to look after myself on a deeper and more loving level, to take my time to connect more with the people in my life, whether I have known them for 2 minutes or 20 years – basically living more lovingly and harmoniously with everyone I meet. The full moon has come to symbolise the potential of how I can be living and relating.
At times the inner tension I can feel is stronger than others, and I have come to accept this as a gift of awareness and understanding – a way of giving me a loving nudge to keep being open to even more. It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut and comfortable with what we know. Yet there are endless opportunities to take a good look at ourselves, our behaviours, how we are in relationships etc., to see what can be let go of to make way for new experiences.
When I find ways to distract myself and avoid this awareness, the inner tension and agitation builds up. This is the opportunity to ask myself the question, “What’s going on within me?” as there is no one else responsible for how I am feeling and choosing to live.
Wherever we are in the world, we can all see the magnificence and magic of the light of the full moon. It’s like an SMS from God to the whole of humanity to remind us all of who we truly are – interconnected, loving human ‘beings’. A message that we all get, regardless of where we are, what we are doing or what we have done. No one ever misses out on our divine reflection.
So is all that strange behaviour that occurs on the lead up to the full moon a resistance or even a denial of the constant evolution that is on offer? We can deny the gift that is on offer or we may choose to accept the reflection and discover that we can let go of the old behaviours, ways of relating and communicating that have never truly supported us and discover a whole new way of living.
By Vicky Geary, Bachelor of Business (Accountancy), Dip. Yoga Teaching, NSW, Australia
(1) Selby, L. (2015). Full moon madness in the ER: Myth or Reality. American Osteopathic Society, The Do.