(Perfect Beginners Program)
Starts September 2019
We begin the course by shedding new light on the struggle with eating and food so you can look at it in a new way – one that is infused with understanding, hope, and meaning. In the soft, reflective light of the New Crescent Moon you will gently discover what has been hidden from view, those issues that lie beneath the surface of so many of your eating difficulties.
This is where we discover personal beliefs developed many years ago (unbeknownst to us) that still contribute to the struggle with food, fat, dieting and weight: family situations (past or present) that continue to affect us, and the cultural conditioning that has secretly been driving disordered eating behaviors for so many women.
Using metaphors and ancient wisdom stories, we reframe the struggle, shine a gentle light on the truth that there is nothing wrong with you (and there never was!), so you can see a way out and receive relief, inspiration, and a multitude of “aha” moments that will inspire you to find the lasting freedom from battles with food, fat, and dieting that you desire.
The New Crescent Moon Course is based on Anita Johnston’s best selling book, Eating in the Light of the Moon: How Women Can Transform Their Relationships with Food Through Myth, Metaphor, and Storytelling,which has been translated into six languages.
The classes in the Café are created as an interactive, multi-media, “work book” for Eating in the Light of the Moon, a book that has helped millions of women preoccupied with their weight discover and address the issues behind their struggle with food.
At the Café, the book chapters come to life with lively audio and video recordings of Anita telling the stories and metaphors from the book. Plus, there are brand new chapters that have not yet been published! The daily activities of each week focus on the corresponding book chapters and are designed to help you take the material deeper in your understanding of how these concepts play out in your personal life.
The interactive forum is much like an online book club and virtual support circle — where women from around the world can gather to discuss the book chapters and share their experiences and reactions. But here, the author chimes in and responds to all of the postings!
You are welcomed into a circle of women who will support you on your journey towards freedom from eating. Through stories, poetry, and metaphor we begin by examining the cultural and personal context of your struggles with eating and your body so you can view it in a different light. We explore what it means to be emotionally sensitive and highly intuitive in a modern culture that does not celebrate those qualities – and how that contributes to struggles with food and body image. Through reframing the struggle with the understanding that there is nothing wrong with you, you will be able to see the way out. We will offer our first teleconference during this week where you can share your questions regarding your relationship with food and we will respond.
You are introduced into the world of metaphor, where you will learn the coded language of disordered eating. As you crack the code, you will begin to see the hidden function of your food and weight obsessions, and get a glimpse of what the recovery process will look like for you. As you continue to shatter the myth that there is something wrong with you, you will find self-compassion, encouragement, and hope — and you will realize you CAN let go of this.
You will get a view of the “Bigger Picture” as you learn about the “masculine” & “feminine” principles that exist within all of us, regardless of gender. You will see how the yin/yang imbalance within yourself (and within a culture that values logical, linear, goal-oriented activities over emotional, intuitive, relational states of being) has had a profound impact on your relationship with food and your body. You will discover how to release yourself from cultural conditioning and false stories, and restore balance to your psyche.
In this week, you will be applying the concepts that we have been exploring and discussing in a very practical way. You will discover, on a daily basis, what has been getting in the way of your eating when you are hungry, and stopping when you are full. With clarity, precision, and curiosity, you will learn how to how to identify and locate your personal physical hunger and satiety sensations – within your own body. You will learn how to listen to, and respond to, your body’s signals and messages when they are very subtle – before they get out of control. Our second teleconference will be held during this week, and you will learn tools to tune into your natural, instinctual way of eating and how to separate it from other feelings and needs you may have. Many have found these tools most helpful
You will dive even deeper into learning how to distinguish emotional hunger from physical hunger. In doing so, you will see how the specific foods you crave or fear distract you from uncomfortable feelings or difficult situations – and learn what it is you need to get back on track.
You will continue explore the symbolic nature of hunger as it applies to your life, and discover how certain foods and disordered eating patterns are speaking to you in the language of metaphor.
In this week, you will identify specific foods you crave or fear, or foods you might continue to eat past fullness and look at them through the lens of metaphor. You will uncover what these foods represent symbolically to you, and discover the other hungers that lie beneath them.
In this week we look at the nature of addiction and how it relates to eating issues, and how emotional and spiritual hungers play a part in obsessions and additions. We explore the urge to eat when not physically hungry as a signal of a different kind of hunger, and how food restriction, exercise addiction, or purging behaviors are attempts to escape from hungers of a different nature that seem insatiable. You learn will explore how to find and feed those other hungers.
You will explore your relationship with your body, shift your understanding of the causes of negative thoughts about your body. You will learn what to do to clear your obsessive thoughts and heal negative body image. We wrap up this module with a final teleconference where we will chat about food as a metaphor. Anita will demonstrate her magic with the foods you are craving. You won’t want to miss it.
"I once thought that I would never really be free from my eating disorder, that there would always be something "wrong" with me. First, I read Eating in the Light of the Moon and saw for the first time that there's nothing wrong with me, that finding and accepting myself is at the core of recovery. The hard part was trying to integrate that knowledge into my heart, mind, body and soul. That's where LOTMC came in. Doing the Cafe coursework sparked insights, discoveries, and vulnerabilities that I was able to bring to my therapy sessions and gave me the support that I needed to dig deeper and face all of the fears I held onto that perpetuated the disordered eating. The power of connecting with other women who are traveling the same path in life and have felt the pain of disordered eating and are working towards recovery helped me to feel more powerful when I really felt very weakened. Even when I felt like I couldn't do it anymore, I still came back to the Cafe and felt the support of everyone that gave me that strength that I needed. There were many times where I sat at my computer typing in tears because I was able to really feel my emotions and be safe enough in this space to express myself openly. I can't thank Anita, Elizabeth, and all of my soul sisters enough! "
NV, Yucca Valley, CA, USA
"Despite 10+ years of great therapy, and 12 step fellowship, I have never quite been able to achieve what I have in just 8 weeks of this course. Every week was a new topic that allowed me to gently and objectively see those areas of myself that still had wounds. It helped to expose the distorted thinking I had about past events in my life that kept me stuck in my disordered eating. Through this class the most valuable things I learned are to trust in and value myself, to further heal past traumas, and that there are so many of "US' out there, waiting to find each other. We are not alone- not at all- we just think we are. I got to meet really incredible people, who are just like me. This course forever changed my thinking and gave me the courage to live my authentic life. It led me by the hand out of the dark depths of disordered eating and into the light. I am strong now- and my eating disorder is weak. Much love to Anita, Elizabeth and my fellow Wise Women!"
~ TF, Valatie, NY
It is really hard to put into words the profound effect of being on this journey of discovery with Light of the Moon Cafe. I am happier, stronger, more joyful and more engaged in living my life. I no longer feel stuck. I have been given the tools and resources to make living my life in full recovery a reality. My Eating Disorder no longer rules my life. Thoughts of food and self-loathing do not take up most of the minutes of my day anymore. At the end of this part of the journey I feel like I am really living and breathing again. My once narrow life has expanded to include choices and possibilities I thought were lost to me. I feel human again. I am o.k. I have always been o.k. Now I truly feel o.k. thanks to Light of the Moon Cafe".
~CM, Squamish, BC, Canada
"After reading Eating in the Light of the Moon, I knew that what was described in the book was exactly what I needed to move on from my disordered eating. The Under the New Moon course expanded on the information and helped me to understand it in new ways and to incorporate it into my own life. After 15 years of restricting, dieting, and bingeing, I am finally beginning to break free. The course has challenged me, opened me up to creativity, helped me to discover all of the needs that lie beneath my eating struggles, and helped me to discover ways to feed those needs. I am no longer a woman who is timid and afraid and constantly caring for others instead of herself. I am beginning to know myself on a level that I never knew possible. Thank you Anita and Elisabeth for developing this course and allowing me to discover the person I was meant to be.”
~LB, Spring Valley, CA, USA
"During the past eight weeks in which I've participated in the Crescent Moon module, I have felt an expansiveness within myself. It seems as though I now have a greater capacity to experience emotions, the joyous ones - happiness, wonder, compassion, and empathy, as well as the painful ones - sorrow, loss, grief, and sadness. I understand that I tampered my fear of emotions with food. I feel less and less need to do so. I also have a greater awareness of and appreciation for my intuition, and a greater willingness to trust it."
~JH, Shoreline, WA, USA
Wow, I am so thankful for you both! I believe this to be one of the most important journeys I have taken in my journey to overcome my disordered eating patterns. I truly understand now that this has nothing to do with food or fat, but is an amazing and powerful teacher to wake me up to what is really going on underneath my challenges. I have so many more tools for processing my emotions in healthy ways and for listening to and speaking my truth with confidence, which truly has been transformative for me. Thank you for helping me step into my true self, let go of my attachments to unhealthy relationships and find and implement my true purpose here. All of these things have contributed to a much more balanced relationship with food and my body! I am forever grateful for the work you are doing to free women from the bondage of food addiction, emotional eating and body image issues. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!”
~M.R. Bothell, WA, US
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