I don’t like to consider myself a skeptic. I’m always looking for the good in situations, the bright side, the silver lining. But there are certain things that I don’t fully buy into.
In Ashtanga yoga, physical practice (asana) is avoided on full moons and new moons because of the strong swings in energy on those days (lots of energy on full moons, little energy on new moons). The idea is that an intense physical practice, such as yoga, is simply too much for our body and our minds on these days, and it is easy to injure oneself. Personally, I’ve never noticed a strong shift in my mood or physical state on a full moon or a new moon. I have practiced on moon days before (judge me!!) and never felt a difference. And I’m generally pretty in tune with shifts in my mood and body.
Yesterday, however, was a different story. The full moon was out even in the heat of the afternoon. Following Shala rules, there was no practice in the morning, so I slept in until — wait for it — 7 AM. After some coffee and a coconut (one of the most perfect breakfasts I have ever known), I set off to explore the idea of buying a netbook. The rickshaw ride was a bit frustrating, bringing us to the wrong place since, of course, K.D. road and K.D street are miles away from each other. I felt like I was back in Charlotte again, losing myself on Queens Boulevard and Queens Road East and Queens Road West. We finally found a place with reasonable prices and an only mildly pushy saleswoman. But the question still hung in the air regarding whether or not a computer was a necessity. Not wanting to make a hurried decision, I said I’d come back later.
The rest of the day, I was a mess. I wrote my parents an email to get their opinion on the situation, and found myself crying over my host family’s keyboard. I cried again at an internet cafe after reading my parents’ thoughtful responses and battling a dodgy internet connection. And I cried a third time on the walk home, when I finally told Mariel how volatile, unstable, upset I had been feeling all afternoon. It was a cry-fecta, if you will.
As we sat out on the balcony, writing and reading and watching that damn full moon illuminate the sky with all its energy, I conceded. Maybe there was some truth to the madness about lunar energy. I may be an emotional person (understatement, okay) but rarely am I so deeply affected by small things. (My parents are laughing right now because this breakdown most likely comes as no surprise to them. Whatever.)
Maybe it was just the lingering stress of adjusting to this trip, this new lifestyle, this new country, this new distance from my loved ones. I could just chalk it up to that. But instead, I’ll hike up my harem pants, sweep a printed scarf around my neck, and hold my head high as I blame it on the moon. It’s what we yogis tend to do, after all.