Cherry blossoms, tulips, and flowering pear and plum trees abound while birds sing their songs of praise…..aaaahh the delights of Spring.
Spring is a time of new beginnings, and in Chinese Medicine it is connected with the Wood element, the color green, growth and flexibility, anger (when there is constraint), and the Liver and Gall Bladder. Spring is a great time to support our body’s innate purification system by nourishing this Wood energy within ourselves. This is the time where we emerge from the depths of a cold winter, bringing forth our seeds/ our visions. It’s time to let it grow!
Here is a profound passage about the cherry blossoms….
From Kakuzo Okakura’s Book of Tea,
Some flowers glory in death—certainly the Japanese cherry blossoms do, as they freely surrender themselves to the winds. Anyone who has stood before the fragrant avalanche at Yoshino or Arashiyama must have realized this. For a moment they hover like bejeweled clouds and dance above the crystal streams; then, as they sail away on the laughing waters, they seem to say: “Farewell, O Spring! We are on to Eternity.”
Also with Spring comes the time to vote for the businesses you love and cherish in the Best of WNC. Voting goes through April 30th. Thank you for all your support!
Click on the link above to vote. Many many thanks!
In praise of the blossoms and appreciation for Spring,
Hello to Fall, and farewell to the morning glories! These ones in the window boxes had their time of glory, but at least their replacement is the uniquely fresh cool morning air that only fall brings at this degree of perfection. Aaahhh.
Chinese Medicine associates fall with the Lungs and Large Intestine, the Metal element, the sky, the clouds, the color white, and the emotion of grief and nostalgia. Our Lungs are constantly bringing in the new (oxygen) and letting go of the old (carbon dioxide.) With each breath, we begin anew. This is a natural time to let go, as beautifully demonstrated by the deciduous trees shedding their leaves. As we let go with each breath, our Lung Qi(energy) discharges, releasing refuse, including emotion. The more readily we can consciously engage with this process of letting go, the more spaciousness we allow for authentic presence. In being present, we are engaged with the richness of life through all of its ease and complexity.
So, come on in! Let’s cultivate some Lung Qi, acclimate to Autumn, boost the immunity, let go of some stuff and make room for fresh fall inspiration!
This season of Late Summer is associated with the Spleen and Stomach, the Earth element, the directionality of center, the color yellow, and compassion. Presently, we find ourselves between Summer and Fall. The Spleen Qi/Energy is what sustains us through transitions. We are always looking to support the Spleen as we move from one season to another. This whole season is a transition; so the Spleen is ready to shine! To keep that Qi shining, we want to nourish our Spleen Qi. Spleen Qi is reflected in both our digestion and our mind. In Chinese medicine, they are very closely inter-related. When we are digesting and assimilating both our food and our emotional experiences well, then the mind is calm and clear.
Finding time to sit in stillness, meditation, on the Earth is a powerful way to nourish Spleen Qi. We can feel into the pause of transition. This process keeps us centered in ourselves and allows time and space for digesting the circumstances of our lives.
There is also a proclivity for Dampness to set in at this time of year. There is a lot of humidity which can be challenging for the Spleen….it hampers the flow of Qi. Burning moxa on acupuncture points is potently effective at transforming Dampness. We can review which points would be most indicated for you. I am equipped to send you home with moxa you can burn yourself. This process helps improve sluggish digestion, foggy headedness, and joint pain, AND the smell of the burning mugwort (moxa) calms the mind!
On the topic of compassion, it is our Spleen Qi that allows us to hold space for another, to truly care about someone else’s experience. Robust Spleen Qi keeps our boundaries intact, not losing touch with our sense of self as we empathize with others.
The author Brene Brown eloquently states on this subject,
”Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.”
Summer is here! Summer is the season of the Heart, joy, Fire and laughter. Our energy is more expansive under the Sun’s extended rays.
The fiery energy of Summer encourages us to open our hearts. When our hearts are open, our Shen(spirit) is calm and content. Perhaps like the stargazer pictured above, we may emulate that beautiful unfurling of petals as we let our hearts shine forth! Offering up our own, unique light….
In sync with this offering of light is a passage by Carlos Castaneda:
”To seek freedom is the only driving force I know. Freedom to fly off into that infinity out there. Freedom to dissolve; to lift off; to be like the flame of a candle, which, in spite of being up against the light of a billion stars, remains intact, because it never pretended to be more than what it is: a mere candle.”