How to create a full moon ritual that’s tuned into your needs and the energy of the lunation.
Lunar living is a way of moving through the world in alignment with the moon cycles. It’s being aware of what phase the moon is in and the effect it has on you personally — and planning accordingly.
The Full Moon is when the Sun and the Moon are opposite one another in the sky, causing the moon to fully reflect the sun’s light. The moon is at its most brilliant and attention-grabbing at this time and you might feel the same — wanting to get out there and socialize, connect, or share what’s on your heart and mind.
You could also feel more emotional or intense than usual. This is an expansive time — whatever it makes you feel, fully show up for it and nurture it.
How to use the energy of the Full Moon
Full Moons are amplifiers. They can help bring clarity, show us what we need to change, reveal truths, and make us want to share what’s on our hearts and minds — all by intensifying what’s already there. Full moons are a great time for gathering with others and using the collective energy to celebrate the cycle so far, everything that you’ve worked on, and everything you’re releasing. A celebration can be something small like an intentional meal, a walk in nature, or a larger scale gathering with friends.
The Full Moon is a great check-in point. If you set intentions on the New or Waxing Moon, now is the time to review and be honest with yourself: How’s going? Are you on track? Have you forgotten your intention? What needs to change to integrate that intention?
Simple actions for the Full Moon: Illuminate, share, and release.
Why create a ritual for the Full Moon?
Rituals at the New Moon and Full Moon can be potent portals to self-inquiry, development, and transformation. Based on how you personally feel in both of these phases, think about what you’d like your rituals to help you do (your ritual objective) and what activities or practices will help you achieve that.
Working in tandem with a New Moon intention-setting ritual or as a stand alone, a Full Moon ritual is a cosmically supportive way to get honest with yourself, make space for clarity, and celebrate your progress.
A traditional time for gathering, Full Moons (and the Waxing/Building Moon phase) emphasize our outward, doing, and community-minded nature. This is balanced with the Waning and New Moon phases of going inward, reflecting, and receiving. Honoring both helps us recalibrate and find balance.
How to create a unique and personalized Full Moon ritual
When creating a Full Moon Ritual that’s unique to you and the the particular moon itself (something I help you do under each Full Moon in my monthly newsletter), consider a few things:
Look to the polarity of the zodiac.
When the moon is full, it’s opposite the sun on the zodiac wheel. So whatever astrological season it is (i.e. Cancer Season, when the sun is in the sign of Cancer), the Full Moon will be in the exact opposite sign (in this example, Capricorn). This push-pull of opposing energies is what make Full Moons so powerful and give each a different flavor.
So when you’re looking to create a Full Moon ritual, consider what zodiac season you’re in and the opposing sign the Full Moon will be in.
- Aries – Libra
- Taurus – Scorpio
- Gemini – Sagittarius
- Cancer – Capricorn
- Leo – Aquarius
- Virgo – Pisces
Assess how you’re feeling.
In a similar vein to looking to the polarities of the Sun/Moon connection, taking some time to check in with yourself in the day or two before the full moon can help you determine what type of ritual you’d like to create. Some moons feel more social and outward, while others want a quieter expression.
The astrology of the moon can help to clarify this, but checking in with your wellbeing is the most important here. Astrology affects us all differently (and hits our charts in unique ways), so be your own authority. If you need some solo witch time, take it. If you want to get out there and express to the masses, party on.
Focus or clarify your intention.
Did you set an intention at the New Moon a couple of weeks ago? No worries if not, now can be a great time to create or refocus on an intention with more clarity.
You can also have a look back to 6 months ago at the New Moon in the corresponding sign (if the Full Moon is in Aquarius, look back to the New Moon in Aquarius earlier in the year). The Full Moon is shining a light on the themes and intentions we put into play, the progress we’ve made, and providing a new perspective and clarity.
Some questions to ask yourself:
- What’s my intention for this cycle?
- What seeds were planted six months ago that are circling back around?
- What’s holding me back from fully stepping into my intention?
- What do I need to help reinforce or bolster my intention to support me in bringing it to life or giving it more clarity?
- Where am I feeling out of balance in my life?
- What part of me wants to be seen and heard?
- How can I celebrate myself this week?
The components of a Full Moon ritual
Set an objective: What do you want to do with this Full Moon? Based on how you’re feeling and the astrology of this lunation, what do you hope to do at this time? Use the above explorations to help you set your objective.
Illuminate and share: Check in with yourself by journaling if you’re feeling more inward or having an intimate conversation with a partner or a group of friends. Some of us process our thoughts and feelings by writing, while others need to talk it out. Sometimes a blend of both is helpful.
The idea is to check in about how this cycle is going and the progress you’re making with your intentions. Sharing our experience with others in a safe way can help us feel seen and connected — two things the Full Moon encourages.
Celebrate: Whatever feels celebratory to you — big or small — the Full Moon wants it front and center.
- Make a lunation-specific playlist
- Plan a special meal or drink
- Get a small group together
- Venture outside
- Move your body
- Share your story
- Take some time away from devices
- Be exactly where you are
Release: Whatever’s not working. Whatever’s been taking up too much space, leaking your energy, and preventing your intentions from coming to fruition — it’s time to chart a new course and let those things fall away over the Waning Moon phase. You can initiate and symbolize your release with:
- A burning ritual – write out what you’re releasing on a piece of paper and burn it.
- A water ritual – get in water (ocean, pool, lake, bath, shower, etc) and imagine what you’re releasing flowing out of you and into the water.
- A smoke cleansing – announce or imagine what you’re releasing while lighting a sacred smoke and cleansing your space and body, allowing the smoke to clean the old energy to make way for the new.
- An earth ritual – sit outside on the ground or on the floor of your home. Imagine your tailbone sprouting roots deep into the earth. Picture what you’re releasing and with an exhale send it down into the earth, where she can compost that sh*t. With you inhale, imagine what you need coming up through your roots and supporting you. Repeat with as many inhales and exhales as needed.
Full Moon Tarot Spread
Any of the above questions we covered are a great line of enquiry for free writing, journalling or asking the tarot, but here’s a Full Moon Tarot Spread specifically designed to get you in the headspace of the peak energy of the Full Moon.
- What’s being illuminated for me at this time?
- What cycles am I breaking?
- What can I shed to help me move move forward?
- What do I need to embrace?
- How am I being called to operate in this new phase?
- How can I express myself more authentically?
When’s the best time to do a Full Moon ritual?
In the day or two leading up to or on the Full Moon to really tap into the increasing and peak energies. Then you can use the Waning Moon phase to help you shed whatever needs to go.
My monthly newsletter helps shine a light on the themes of each Full Moon and zodiac season and suggests rituals and where to focus your attention, tarot spreads, and more.
Header photo credit: @filmplusdigital via Unsplash