Amavasya means no moon day or new moon day. Whenever something or someone becomes absent, through that absence, his or her presence always becomes more powerful. For example, if you had a friend or a loved one who was with you, you never felt their presence so much. But the moment they disappear, you feel their presence so much – it is so powerful. This is true even on the emotional level. You do not really feel their presence when they are around. Only when they are gone, the vacuum that they have left behind has become more powerful than their presence itself. Similarly with the moon, her absence makes her more present than ever before. On any other day – even the Poornima – she is there, but on Amavasya, the presence and quality is felt even more.
On Amavasya, the earth broods. A certain integration of the elements happens, so the life process on the planet slows down. This is a great opportunity because the integration of life happens much better on this day. When everything is going well, you do not know what is happening with the body; the body is just you. But when there is a slowdown, you distinctly notice your body. For example, when you get even a small ailment, suddenly the body is an issue and is something that you have to pay attention to. Only when it does not do well, you know, “This is not me. This is just my body giving me trouble.” Very clearly, a distance arises. One can easily become aware of, “What is me and what is not me,” and from there on, the journey from untruth to truth begins. Every month, this opportunity is created naturally. Even for those who are completely unaware, there is a natural opportunity available beginning every Amavasya and moving on.
The nature of Poornima is more of the Ida or the feminine. Poornima is more conducive for a feminine energy, so it is generally made use of by women. Amavasya is very raw. One day before Amavasya is known as Shivaratri because it is Shiva’s night. It is primordial in nature. When everything is pitch dark, it is like the creation is dissolved. There is a tinge of the destroyer in Amavasya. Generally, on the night of Amavasya, a very feminine energy would either be disturbed because it causes fear and disturbance in her, or it could turn roguish and man-like. For a man, if he is seeking well-being, he can also make use of Poornima, but if he is seeking liberation or dissolution, Amavasya is better. For all those who are seeking absolute dissolution, Amavasya is great.
You may have heard that if people are a little mentally imbalanced, on Poornimas and Amavasyas they become more so. Why this is so is, the impact of the moon is working on our planet. It is pulling everything up. Whole oceans are trying to rise. Similarly, your own blood is responding to the moon’s impact. So if you are a little mentally imbalanced, because of excessive circulation in your brain on that day, you will become more imbalanced. If you are happy, you will become more happy. If you are unhappy, you will become more unhappy. Whatever is your quality gets a little enhanced on those days because the blood is being pulled upward. The whole energy is being pulled upward in some way. For a spiritual sadhaka who is always using every means possible to move his energies upward, these two days are like a boon from nature.