The November full moon holds helpful energy for closure and resolving issues you no longer need to carry. Some of those issues may center around relationships and how you feel about certain people in your life. Does your heart want to forgive or does it simply need to unburden itself? I created a journal page to help you explore how you feel about forgiveness and healing during this month’s full moon.
Forgiveness is not a simple topic. This explains why this particular journal page is one of the most emotionally complicated ones I’ve created. Forgiveness is a much deeper emotional journey than a lot of candy coated sentiments make it out to be. I can’t just jump straight to forgiveness and especially if there is trauma I most definitely should not do this. Sometimes I have to travel a long spirally road to get to forgiveness. Sometimes it’s not even the appropriate destination.
In order for this month’s full moon ritual to go beyond sugar and fluff, I want to share my thoughts on forgiveness before giving the instructions on how to use the hand-drawn journal page I created.
On this particular journal page, the first task I ask you to do is to write a list of people who have hurt you. I don’t know about you but writing that list instantly makes me feel vulnerable. It’s hard to admit to myself when someone has hurt me. Firstly, it brings up old wounds and sometimes I discover those wounds are still bleeding which requires patience and a willingness to not judge myself for not having ‘gotten over it already’.
Secondly, I’m much better at self-blame than asking myself to acknowledge other people’s destructive actions and behaviors. If I acknowledge their unhealthy behaviors then I can’t be nice or easy-going anymore. I can’t just let things slide and avoid confrontation. I have to take care of my heart and set healthy boundaries and that might make other people uncomfortable or it might make them judge me or it might destroy the relationship. Either way, taking care of my heart will upset the apples in the apple cart and all the apples will come tumbling out onto the ground and I’ll have to be okay with that. I’ll also have to be okay with losing a few apples (because inevitably I will lose the relationships that will not respect how I want to care for my heart), which will force me to grieve.
So right out the gate, making a list of people who have hurt me is challenging.
But next comes the request to consider who I am ready to forgive or who I want to feel differently about. I worded this prompt specifically in these two ways because I don’t believe forgiveness is always the healthiest choice. Sometimes the healthier choice is simply inviting my heart to unburden itself without focusing on forgiveness. You do not need to forgive in order to move on or evolve and grow. Instead, perhaps exploring your deeper feelings is most appropriate. In relation to this person or this hurt, what is your heart tired of carrying? If you are not ready to forgive, what is your heart ready to let go of?
When I skipped this step and practiced forgiveness in a way that completely glossed over how I was actually feeling or dismissed my emotional needs, I was flying over all kinds of steps my heart needed me to take to truly heal and grow. Valuing forgiveness over self-care, causes more damage. I believe my heart is naturally ready to forgive when I fully listen to and take care of what it needs. Until I am there, it is much healthier to allow myself to feel whatever my heart needs to feel including rage, injustice and fear because there is wisdom in those uncomfortable feelings.
If you use this journal page during this month’s full moon, trust your heart and the pace it wants to go. Don’t ignore trauma if it’s there. Get support if you need it. Use this page to help you explore how you feel without judging your heart or forcing it to be different or rushing it past necessary steps to healing. Allow yourself to be where you are then ask Spirit to help you shift what you are ready to shift. Don’t leap all the way to some perfectionist idea of forgiveness if that is not what your heart most needs.
Also, as you contemplate what your heart needs, don’t confuse forgiveness with a lack of boundaries. I did this in the past and it wasn’t helpful or healthy. I can have empathy or understand where someone else is coming from and I can even open my heart to feel compassion for them and see their spiritual innocence but that does not mean I have to think what they did is okay or I should allow the same destructive behaviors to continue to happen. From now on, I only want to invite forgiveness when I can do both things at the same time; forgive and set healthy boundaries.
This month’s journal page might be difficult to complete but the energy of this month’s moon will be a great support. As Forever Conscious states, there is a strong theme of closure around this moon. The energy will help you resolve issues that have been bothering you. If you are looking for a peaceful conclusion to a relationship that is causing pain, let the energy of this moon support you.
If you are not on my email list and haven’t received this month’s journal page, visit my homepage and sign up. You’ll receive a link where you can download the page. Print it, grab a tea and a cozy blanket, get comfortable then follow the instructions below.
If you enjoy these full moon journal pages, then you may also enjoy the free online Creative Moon Circles that accompany these pages. You can learn more about those here.
If moon rituals are familiar to you, prepare your sacred space and invite Spirit to join you in whatever way works best for you.
If, however, you are new to moon rituals, I’ve included a quick guide to the steps I follow to prepare for my moon rituals in a past blog post. Take a look at it before moving forward.
Print out the November full moon journal page and choose a marker or pencil crayon that represents letting go or releasing.
The page features symbolism that is helpful for releasing and letting go. There are black candles for protection, crab apples to represent physical and emotional cleansing, dill as an emotional decongestant (if you’ve buried feelings for a while that will be helpful), basil for purification, holly to bring about sincere forgiveness and dogwood to restore innocence and to address the protective shell we build when we’ve been abused or mistreated.
If you don’t have someone in particular you want to forgive, you might want to explore where you feel you need to forgive yourself. In my life, this has been the longest and most difficult journey of forgiveness I’ve had to travel. Another area many clients who have experienced trauma explore in our sessions is the forgiveness they want to experience in their relationship with Spirit. When we experience difficult things we often feel abandoned by Spirit. We can even feel like Spirit has never really been there for us. Just like in our personal relationships, our hearts can build walls between us and the Divine and it cuts us off from feeling connected to the Love that is there. If this is the case, you might want to use the energy of this month’s moon to explore your spiritual relationships.
On the journal page, you will see a drawing of a smaller piece of paper in the upper left hand corner. This is where you are asked to create your list of people who have hurt you. On the drawing of the larger piece of paper in the middle of the journal page, you are asked to explore who you would like to forgive or feel differently about. It’s a simple page to complete but not necessarily an easy one so don’t forget, you don’t have to shift and grow on your own. There is a universe of Love here to support you even if you don’t feel particularly close to it.
If you end up completing this spiritual art ritual, I’d love to see what you created. You can even post the finished piece on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #danasartrituals or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and share with me how it went for you.