In autumn we learn more about ourselves, perhaps, than in any other season...
Having provided the harvest, depleted energy quietly returns to the earth. In this season Nature lets go of its abundant creation of the past year in a brilliant final display.
Autumn marks the end of the growing season - a turning inward, a falling away of outer-directed energy. Old leaves fall to the earth, breaking down and enriching the soil to form around a new seed of "hope".
Nature instructs us about our own cycles of creating and letting go: Trees in autumn don't stubbornly hold onto their leaves because they might need them next year. Yet how many of us defy the cycle and hold onto what we've produced or collected - those decayed leaves, that old negativity? How can we hope for a harvest next year unless we let go of the old and start afresh?
There is more to this season than “letting go” - it is also a time to take in the pure. The air in autumn becomes fresh and crisp. Think of waking up on a brisk fall day and filling your lungs with clean, cool autumn air. While the Large Intestine eliminates waste, the Lung, the other organ contained within the Metal element, enables us to take in the pure, the new. It grants us the inspiration of a breath of fresh air.
Besides infusing your body with oxygen, your lungs take in ki energy from the air that you breathe and send it throughout your body. Problems in the lungs can cause you to feel tired and weak due to insufficient energy and oxygen going to the rest of your body. People who have lung trouble may have a flushed face and dry mouth, or experience stuffiness in the chest, neuralgia in the arms and wrists, hot palms, and lackluster skin.
Lung trouble, besides having a physical basis, can result from intense emotions for prolonged periods, because the Lung Meridian is related to strong emotions, especially sorrow and grief. Sadness leads to diminished lung capacity, which leads to other disorders.
Improving energy circulation in the Lung Meridian will empower you with more energy, glowing skin, and better concentration. While nothing can replace full body practices like Qi Gong or my Qi Yoga... A simple alternative is to practice Chest Tapping, or massaging your arms and trying Intestine Massage or Intestine Exercise.
Large Intestine Meridian
The Large intestine (colon), one of the two organs in the Metal element, has the function of eliminating what is unnecessary or toxic from our bodies. But we are more than just physical bodies. Think of the daily mountain of useless information and pollutants directed at our minds and our spirit. We need to eliminate mental and spiritual rubbish, lest our minds become toxic and constipated with the old, unable to experience the pure and the beautiful that also surround us. The Colon function on the mental and spirit level enables us to let go of all this waste.
To maintain and sustain a free flowing Large Intestine Meridian requires sensitive self-observation. Are the bowels regular? Is the skin clear? Are the lungs congested? All of these symptoms can be improved via the health of the Large Intestine Meridian .
The yin to the Large Intestine Meridian's yang is the Lung Meridian. Like all great partnerships, each part has the capacity to support the other for the highest health of the whole. According to Eastern Medicine, when the lungs are congested or achy with flu, exercises for the large intestine can help shift sickness into balance.
Conversely, when the colon or Large Intestine Meridian is stagnant or sore, deep breathing can ignite stronger digestion and elimination. Weakened digestion can lead to skin problems such as acne, and emotional symptoms such as being unable to let go. Using clear breath circulated from the lungs helps to transform emotions of grief and sorrow (emotions associated with the lungs and colon) into love and acceptance.
The underlying cause of health problems is the toxins within our internal organs. Unhealthy eating habits and excessive stress cause your intestines to become cold and stiff, which prevents food from being completely excreted, which then releases toxins. This is called auto-intoxication—self-poisoning by the body’s own toxins. This also negatively impacts the proper absorption of nutrients and minerals from the healthy foods we eat.
Intestine Exercise stimulates your intestines and improves peristalsis of the colon, which removes the feces along the walls of the intestine and relieves constipation. Because two-thirds of your body’s blood flows through your abdomen, Intestine Exercise is great not only for your abdomen, but for the circulation of your entire body. As the solar plexus is stimulated, bladder and reproductive functions are often enhanced, improving even feminine illnesses caused by cold energy. Your skin may also improve as rashes, acne, and skin spots are alleviated by the release of toxins. Click this link to get connected and healthy using Intestine Exercises
As Nature moves into a period of rest, we too must be cautious not to overexert. The time for “putting it all out there” - the summer - has passed. Now is the time to contain ourselves, acting and speaking only when necessary, behaving with economy, exerting our will quietly and calmly. Those in the “autumn of their lives” must protect themselves from the extremes of hot and cold within this season.
Once blockages are released and energy flows smoothly, our human nature yearns for deeper connection and then for meaning and purpose. It is important to note true transformation comes with greater change. Changing your habits and your outlook. Expanding your conscious awareness to solve the question of why you are here, and developing your skills and capacity on a trajectory of growth, connection and comprehension.
This is where the journey begins and the 5 Elements can be a reliable path and reflective gage...
If you want to go a step deeper into harmonizing The 5 Elements, register for my Free Masterclass: "Qigong & The 5 Elements Of Empowered Living"