The summer solstice is soon upon on us! June 21st marks the day of the year with the longest amount of sunlight. I am always amazed when I learn more about native cultures, because, just like yoga, most native cultures are similar in the importance that they place on honoring Mother Nature. They are also similar in the role that astrology plays in determining holidays, important times of year, and the most energetically powerful days to engage in specific rituals and practices. The upcoming summer solstice marks one of those significant days of year.
From the yogic perspective, the solar energy of the sun can be called Shiva, as it is primarily a masculine energy. When we observe the qualities of the sun, we see that it is hot, sharp, piercing, penetrating, and laser-focused. These are all qualities of the masculine energy. In yogic symbolism, Shiva is depicted as a handsome man, sitting in a meditative pose, a pose of laser-focused concentration.
The energy of the moon, on other hand, carries the feminine energy of Shakti. The moon is cool; it waxes and wanes in flow; it is receptive and open. In yogic symbolism, Shakti is depicted as a beautiful woman with eight arms. She is open, inviting, fierce, and compassionate. Her multi-tasking nature can be contrasted with the masculine energy of single-pointed focus.
Why is this relevant? Because, these qualities that we see in nature are also within us. We all carry within ourselves varying degrees of masculine and feminine energy. Nature provides us with special moments, such as the Summer Solstice, to reflect upon these qualities. We are given the opportunity to connect with ourselves through what we experience in Nature. Yoga and Ayurveda say that we are simply a microcosm of the vast macrocosm that is the Universe. This means that everything we see in the Universe is also within us.
So, what better time to connect with ourselves and honor Nature than on the Summer Solstice! This is why we have created a special live online event where we can practice together as a community. In this event, I will guide you through a yoga practice honoring the sun through sun salutations, and then balancing it out with lunar restorative poses. I am so thrilled to share this powerful practice with you on June 21st!
I am especially excited because 100% of the proceeds from this event will go towards an organization that is very dear to my heart. The organization is called “Shakti,” and it was founded by spiritual teacher, Anandmurti Gurumaa. This organization is dedicated towards empowering and educating underprivileged girls in India.