Today is the last day of January. It’s also a Full Moon, and actually, it’s a Blue Moon; the second full moon of January. It’s also a Super Moon, which means the Moon is its closest to Earth in its elliptical orbit when its full, and here in Helsinki, we even can see partial moon eclipse in the afternoon. Magical day in many ways, eh?
In Finnish traditions, the full moon was a time to rest. It was strong and powerful time, but not good time to do important or heavy work. Only candle making was good to do under the Full Moon – people believed, that the light of the Moon could transfer into candles. So, we will take it easy today too, just do some writing – in the candle light. <3
Before we start a new journey, it’s always good to look back to understand, where we came from to this new year, a new circle around the Sun.
In ancient Roman mythology, Janus was the God of beginnings, gates, transitions, time, duality, and endings. He is usually described as a God of two faces, since he looks to the future and to the past. He was worshipped on the first days, first months, and on the first days of planting and other important new beginnings. Janus is also the root for the name for the first month of the year in many Germanic languages – In English January or Swedish Januari, for example.
Some Northern Native American tribes called January the Wolf Moon, after howling wolves. Wolves are getting close to their mating season which starts in February, and if we’d still live in the nature and had enough wolf packs around us, we would probably hear them starting to find their partners.
In Finnish we call this month Tammikuu, which translates The Oak Month. Tammi means both an Oak tree, the Tree of Life, which in Finnish mythology keeps the Sky up and circling above us. It also means the pole, the heart of the winter, and like January is usually in the middle of the coldest period of Winter.
But back to Janus and his face that’s looking back: let’s do History Mapping. This is a tool I learned from my friend Risto when we had retreat in the Andaman Islands a few years back. It’s a simple tool I have modified a bit, and I recommend doing it every January or in the beginning of the year anyway.Download History Mapping template here!
You know the pessimistic saying, that people don’t learn from the history? That is true, but only applies to people who don’t stop and learn from their history. If you do this right, and do it with honesty, you will learn from your challenges, and from your successes. This tool defines the most important events, people, places, successes and challenges of the previous year.
Take some time to fill this, at least an hour or even two. Take your diary, calendar, photos, Facebook – what ever is the best tools for you to identify all the important events of the year and fill them in to this History Map.
After you have filled it, go through it – either by yourself, or with a dear friend or your partner, and see what stands out. What can you learn from your past? What do you want to repeat this year? Build on and grow? What you should avoid?
Then, take two papers or a notebook: to the first page, list the things you are happy to repeat and things you want to continue doing this year. Then. To the other paper, list the things you are ready to give up. That you don’t definitely need anymore in your life. Take this paper, and burn it carefully. The ashes you may sprinkle to your plants to nurture them with your unneeded life pulp. Look, everything, even the shittiest experiences, can be used as fertiliser 🙂 This is part of the cycle of life.
Thank you for following, see you next month with new learnings, practices, and stories. Meanwhile, go outside, look up to the Sky, and howl your greetings to the Grand Mother Moon! Ouuuuuu!