Moon salutations, also known as Chandra Namaskar, are a sequence of yoga poses that are specifically designed to honour and celebrate the energy of the moon. While the more common sun salutations (Surya Namaskar) are associated with activating and energizing the body, moon salutations are believed to have a calming and cooling effect on the mind and body. Here are a few reasons why moon salutations are practised in yoga:
The moon is often associated with yin energy, which represents a cooler, softer, and more introspective aspect. Moon salutations aim to cultivate these qualities within the practitioner, providing a balance to the active and dynamic energy of the sun salutations.
Moon salutations are thought to have a soothing effect on the nervous system. The slow, fluid movements, combined with deep breathing, help to release tension and promote a sense of relaxation and tranquillity. Practising moon salutations before bedtime can be particularly beneficial for calming the mind and preparing for sleep.
Yoga philosophy often emphasizes the concept of finding balance in all aspects of life. Moon salutations can be seen as a way to bring balance to the body and mind. By acknowledging and honouring the energy of the moon, practitioners seek to create a harmonious connection between the lunar and solar energies within themselves.
Lunar Cycles and Feminine Energy
The moon is closely associated with the cycles of nature and feminine energy. Moon salutations are sometimes practised to attune oneself to the rhythms of the moon and to tap into the intuitive, receptive, and nurturing aspects of feminine energy.
Moon salutations typically include poses that emphasize grounding and connection to the Earth. These poses help to release excess heat from the body, making it a suitable practice for times when you feel agitated, overheated, or in need of a more calming and grounding experience.
Remember that the benefits and intentions of yoga practices can vary from person to person, and it’s essential to listen to your body and practice in a way that feels right for you. Moon salutations can be a beautiful way to connect with the moon’s energy and cultivate a sense of calm and balance.