Our troubled economic times have come to my house. We weren’t really too surprised, and with half a million people laid off last month in the US, we are certainly not alone. As I frequently do when I am troubled, I went out to look at the moon, to rise above the place of my daily life concerns and be in the moon’s realm of beauty and peace. As it happened, last night the full moon was big and bright because this is the month when the full moon is closest to the earth.
It got me to thinking about how, according to something I once read, it was once considered very powerful to kiss your hand to the moon. Once more the moon became my comforter and muse as I thought of what this custom really says. To me, it is a way to express that…
You love yourself. I don’t mean that in an egocentric way, but that you accept who you are, appreciate your uniqueness and the fact that, of all the people who have ever been born on this earth and who ever will be born, you are the only one who can express exactly the message you have for the world and do what you need to do with your life to make the world a kinder, more just place for everyone to live. So, you’d better get to it.
You are connected to the universe at large. You understand that you are never really alone, never really isolated or lonely, because you are deeply embedded in the entire universe of planets, stars, and all creatures on this earth. You are, after all, greeting the celestial body that circles your planet and is in gravitational balance with all the rest of the universe. You are expressing and taking your unique place in the universe. You are saying that you belong here, that what you have to say and do has worth because you are right where you are meant to be.
Life is to be lived joyfully. I mean, kissing your hand to the moon, if you do it well (meaning with a smile on your face and a flourish of your arm, as well as a great big smacking noise) is kind of silly according to the rather staid and dour culture we seem to live in these days, so you must get into a mood for spontaneity and doing things just for the fun of it, especially if you do it with any frequency.
In other words, gaze at the moon, and then go inside and get back to work being creative and taking action, saying what you need to say and doing what you need to do, and doing so with joy.
I sometimes get lost in everyday life and all its complications. I forget that the answers to getting through every day can be very simple. Sometimes finding the impetus to respond to life’s difficulties comes from just going outside and kissing your hand to the moon… kissing your hand to the moon and being grateful for all those celestial bodies and human beings who call forth happiness and joy despite all the stress and uncertainty of our times, who call forth respect for individuality and creativity and its expression as music or poetry or other art forms, who call forth compassionate action as a way of solving the troubles of the world.