Since the new moon only arrives when the moon wanes to total darkness, it's easily dismissed as a boring lunar phase (especially when compared to the bright, expansive full moon). But, in Lunar Abundance, Ezzie Spencer, PhD, writes that the new moon encourages us to get in touch with ourselves physically, making it a great time for self-care, masturbation, and, yes, sex.
It might sound silly to consider timing your self-love or hookups with the moon, but hear us out. Right after its "new" phase, the moon starts to wax, meaning the illuminated area of its surface increases until it reaches fullness. Every month, the moon appears to shrink down to nothing and expand all over again, mimicking the cycle of life and death, where the new moon signals the moon's rebirth.
With that in mind, this phase is pretty powerful from a spiritual standpoint: In the same way that it signals the reemergence of the moon, the new moon can be an opportunity to reconnect with your body, too. Before the lunar cycle begins again (and you return to the flurry of activity in your everyday life), it's important to check in with yourself and remember what makes you feel comfortable, loved, and satisfied. Or, as Dr. Spencer writes: "It is in the darkness that we can start to uncover our hidden riches."
And, you should move through that process of "uncovering" nice and slowly. Start by touching yourself anywhere and reflecting on how it feels, Dr. Spencer writes. Say you touch your right thigh: Is it warm? Is it smooth or rough? Sit with that sensation before moving on to a new one. If you're with someone, ask them to do the same. Then try touching each other, while asking if you can before doing so. And really, you can let this lead you to masturbate, foam roll, or have sex — as long as you're pursuing an intense, physical sensation, you're doing it right.
Because your goal in this new moon exercise is simple: to rediscover your body and its senses. As the moon starts to return to its full form, so, too, can you make a conscious effort to fully inhabit your body. Of course, it's up to you whether you do anything in the name of the new moon at all. But, if nothing else, let this be a gentle reminder that extra slow foreplay can be really fun.