Esbats – Marking the Full Moon as a Solitary Naturalistic Pagan

While researching Esbats I have discovered that they are often seen as a time of heightened magical energy and are often used as an opportunity for casting magic or rituals as part of a coven. While I don’t personally cast magic or have others to celebrate with I have still chosen to mark the full moons as an opportunity to develop my pagan practice and myself.

While I see the Sabbats as a great opportunity to observe the external world, nature, and reflect on and celebrate my gratitude towards being part of the Earth, I see the Full Moon as a great time to regularly direct my attention inwards. To myself, my feelings, and how I could look at certain areas of my life to bring myself greater happiness or to have a better effect on those around me or to the world in general.

How I Celebrate the Full Moon

I like to use the day of a full moon to fully focus on living mindfully and being present for my life.

On the morning I like to choose an appropriate stone or crystal based on the esbat associations or history and keep it with me in my pocket all day as a reminder. I will hold it in my hand throughout the day to ground myself in being present and focused on taking in everything around me through all my senses. Speaking kindly to others. Fully focusing on the world around me instead of mindlessly scrolling on my phone or being lost in thoughts of the future or past, or my ever growing to do list.

If schedule and weather allows I like to spend some time during the day outside mindfully enjoying and appreciating nature. If not, I will try to just mindfully enjoy the day in general.

In the evening I like to make a seasonal dinner, possibly using any appropriate herbs. And eat mindfully enjoying the taste, smell and feel of the food.

Afterwards I will go somewhere quiet to reflect on my chosen goals. I like to set up an appropriate fragrance on my altar, usually I use essential oils and water in an oil burner as incense gives me headaches and a sore throat but you could use whatever your preference is. Then I take time to focus on whatever area of my life I have chosen to work on this day. This can either be using meditation or writing thoughts down.

When I have finished I like to make myself a cup of herbal tea that feels appropriate to my area of focus or to the season. I will set the tea down to brew on my alter for a while.

While the tea brews I will do a small ritual to help me focus my thoughts on to my chosen area of life I wish to work on. This usually involves candles, stones, focused thought, perhaps some of the elements. Doing a ritual really helps me psychologically to focus and enact a change in my life. I often like to create a little momento out of the ritual to keep as a reminder of my goals.

When I’m finished, if weather allows, I will take my tea outside to enjoy it, gaze at the full moon, and enjoy nature using my senses. If it is not possible to go outside I will try to sit near an open window where I can see the moon and feel the evening breeze.

I’ll be using this blog to share how I am marking each Esbat and using the regular opportunities the Full Moon gives me.

I would love to hear more about how you mark the full moons or use the moon in general to guide your life or rituals.

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