Exploring Duality: Sun and Moon

So often in yoga practice, we focus on surya namaskar, salutation to the sun. There’s series A, B, C, Hatha style sun salutation, Iyengar style and I imagine many other sacred variations.  What about the moon salutation? Yes, lots of ways to practice the moon salutation too! Where do you park yourself, sun salutation, moon salutation, a balanced mix of both?

With the full moon rising this week, I began to focus more on creating a full moon practice.  In ayurveda, the full moon resembles many of the gunas, qualities, of Kapha Dosha.  During the full moon, you see fullness and therefore feel indulged, feel coolness and start to unwind; and move slower, finding more time to relax with your people!  You may be asking, how does this affect your yoga practice? Well, in the evening, you may want to feed these qualities nurturing your yin side, the more feminine, cool, nourishing half of your being. Perhaps starting practice on your back, feeling the coolness of the ground below you and gradually moving into several rounds of your favorite style moon salutation.  Nadi Shodana, alternate nostril breathing, may also be a good choice to draw out your more soothing side!

How about the morning after full moon practice? For me, this is where duality comes into play.  Finding that balance between sun and moon, generating heat yet not overheating, creating lightness while still finding your ground, nourishing your spirit, and not getting too satiated! Here perhaps flirting with this duality of sun and moon by incorporating sun salutations to begin practice and moon salutations to end practice?  Combine kapalabhati, breath of fire, with shitali, cooling pranayama? Putting a little savasana into the mix, take a 5 to 10 minute rest feeling the coolness of the ground below you and the warmth of the universe surrounding you!

Would love to hear your thoughts on how this plays out for you?!



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