April Waxing Moon: Practicing Active Vulnerability

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April First Quarter Moon: Practicing Active Vulnerability

From the Many Moons Workbook: 

“What happens when people open their hearts? They get better.” —Haruki Murakami

Vulnerability looks different to everyone. To be vulnerable suggests a tender disrobing, a rosewater stained love letter slipped into a mailbox, a teary apology that might not be accepted but must be expressed. For a lot of us, vulnerability entails both active giving and active receiving. It might mean asking for help. For others, it is imparting personal information, telling others you have a disability or explaining physical limitation, sharing, exposing the soft belly. This reluctance to unmask can stop us.

Vulnerability suggests danger. It implies weakness. It holds the institution of the mask up as the one to covet. When I was looking up synonyms for vulnerability, the words “indebtedness,” “susceptibility,”, “blame,” and “liability” came up. The word “accountability” also came up. In our current dominant culture there isn’t much room, or much encouragement, to admit fault or wrongdoing. Mistakes are held up as iron petitions against character, intelligence, the value that is intrinsically inherent in our life force as humans.

Asking for help doesn’t equate to “weakness”. Making mistakes publicly or privately does not equal concrete failure. Making mistakes, in most cases, means that one is trying and testing and experimenting and does not have all the information yet and will eventually learn from those mistakes. We can insert all the inspirational tales about Thomas Edison and J.K Rowling and not giving up and it might sound corny, but it’s true. We learn from doing, we learn from making mistakes, we learn by moving ahead. A big part of that is being vulnerable enough in the first place to try.

Vulnerability suggests risks. It implies an opening, an embrace. Vulnerability is the truth of who we are, the offering on the collective table. Paradoxically, I’m usually stronger when I am actively vulnerable. I’m telling others, and the universe, what I want. I’m telling myself I’m truly ready to be honest with myself.

Vulnerability is a shiny, invisible tiara of victory. It’s trusting ourselves to be honest; it’s following through with this core honesty in our meaningful relationships. It’s allowing ourselves to be changed in doing so. In doing so, we expand and so do those around us. In doing so, we become stronger. Vulnerability gives us the gift of resilience.

During this Waxing Moon time, with the First Quarter on a Monday in Cancer, examine the ways in which you are practicing active vulnerability currently. There are some ways it literally isn’t safe to enact vulnerability: at certain places of work, with certain family members, or in some relationships. That is not the ask. The ask is to question where it time to be vulnerable in accordance with where it is ready for you to step out into.

The fear will surface. There could be rejections. That’s okay. You’re learning. It is new. You are building a foundation out of travails and modest victories alike. Take the rejection as fodder for the new soil getting tended to.

Practicing active vulnerability can be as simple as softening into an emotion for a little bit, letting it lounge, stretch out like a yawning cat in a sun spot in your heart; checking in with a colleague who is having a rough time, buying them a small treat for no reason. Practicing active vulnerability could mean educating yourself about cultures you might not know much about, sinking into other people’s experiences and perspectives in order to widen your own. Read works by Claudia Rankine, Leslie Marmon Silko, Maxing Hong Kingston. Volunteer your time.

Maybe practicing active vulnerability means not reacting, not feeling the compulsion or impulse to control what is around you; to let people be where they are and not try to fix or change anything; to truly acknowledge and accept yourself as you are right here in this moment.

Suggestion crystals to meditate with: desert rose, rhodolite, rose quartz
Suggested tinctures to try: calendula, pink yarrow, Solomon’s seal, walnut

Where could practicing vulnerability actively could help your soul?
What are one or two actions you could take this week to enact this?

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