chandra namaskar – 2 yoga

The Moon stands for the feminine energy and has a close association with human life and lifestyle. It is seen as a female symbol associated with mystery, empowerment and psychic skill, and as such was worshipped in ancient times as a powerful force of transformation. It is considered to be deeply linked to our unconscious and is therefore seen as magical and mysterious.

The lunar month consists of two halves of 15 days each. The first begins with the New Moon (amavasya), while the second half begins with the Full Moon (purnima). Fasting or detoxifications, intake of special food, exfoliation and salt baths are common during the waning moon moving into the new moon as the energy is considered to help cleanse and refresh.

Pampering of the body and soul is done when the moon is waxing up to the full moon. It is the time to replenish, repair and rejuvenate through deep body massages, essential oils, aroma therapy and special dhyaan (meditation). The ancients understood that the human system-body/mind/soul was more absorbent at this time of the lunar month.

Chandra Namaskar or the Moon Salutation is a flowing vinyasa sequence where the practitioner salutes the feminine consciousness, or the Devi energy. It is a set of moving postures encoding the waxing and waning apects of the moon. Starting with the full moon the postures flow into the new moon and then back into the full moon. When done in conjunction with the breath, it works on all body parts, every organ and every system. It  is one of the most effective practises to extend the spinal muscles, strengthen the back and open the hips. Energetically it is a very grounding and centering practice.

The Chandra Namaskar  is designed to calm, cool and renew the body and mind at the close of the day. It should not be viewed as a physical exercise workout. If the moon salutation is done at a fast pace it defeats the very purpose for which it is done and that is to wind the body and mind down, promoting a deep inner quietness and complete restfulness.

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