The dark side of the Moon Days

Even as you’re reading this (if it is still Tuesday evening Los Angeles time), Bobbie and I are living it up.

Well, living it up as much as Ashtangis do on the night before a Moon Day. A Moon Day that falls in the middle of the work week. On a morning when one of the Ashtangis has to be out the door for a meeting by about 7:30 a.m.

Give me a second to grumble quietly to myself.


Nevertheless, we will try to stay up later (not as late as I’d hope), and the dinner negotiations via email have been lively. (They’re now over; Bobbie’s at the shala.) We’ve got to add a little something special to the evening.

That’s just how it’s done, right? The night before a Moon Day is at least as luxurious as the Moon Day itself.

One of those days

For those perhaps still a bit new to the Ashtanga practice (and I’ve had a few email / Facebook / Twitter interactions during the past week with folks who are on the early side of things), one of the strange ramifications of Ashtanga is your becoming acutely attuned to the moon’s cycle. For me, frankly, it has manifested itself in my seeing the moon more often; I guess I just know when to look up during a mid-morning or early evening to see the waxing and waning sliver of our solar neighbor.

The moon’s progress gets ingrained.

The not-so-strange ramification is how pleased you’ll be when the new and full moon arrive.

It provides a chance to sleep in; it provides a chance to stay out a little late; it’s a bit of a recharge moment. (Side thought: Is there a best day of the week for a Moon Day? Friday, so there’s two days off in a row and because you can justify going out on a Thursday night?)

There’s nothing bad about a Moon Day.


Not so fast. Sadly, there is. And I experienced it this — Tuesday — morning: The guilt-driven, forced practice because you can’t take two days off in one week.

I sat on the edge of the bed Tuesday morning, about 4:30, a full 30 minutes before I get up normally. I sat weighing whether I should turn off the alarm, fall back onto my pillow and try to get another two full hours of sleep after a fitful, at best, night.

It was either that, or get up. Because I’d realized I needed to be out of the house earlier than normal; being on the mat at 6:15 was going to be too late.

I had to move or just give up.

I moved. There was no other choice, because Wednesday there’s no practice (also no real sleep-in). No practice, because of the Moon Day I so love, but which in this moment was breaking my heart.

On the one upside, today’s been a stellar one proving that, indeed, no coffee, no prana.

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

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