That Which Guides Us
As practitioners of Chinese Medicine we rely heavily on readings from ancient texts to supply the backbone for our theories, and these texts take wisdom from nature. Our primary resource is the Huang Di Nei Jing Su Wen, a text suggesting how to best align oneself with nature. It describes appropriate behavior seen as promoting health based on the seasons.
Aligning Oneself With Spring
The Nei Jing (the above linked text has a nickname) directs us to sleep more in the winter when there is not as much daylight in the northern hemisphere. Spring marks the time to stay up later and get up earlier, so that we match the schedule of the sun. We can also let our hair down and relax, making sure to take walks. This is a marked change from being bundled up and staying inside during the winter months.
Spring is also a time of new growth, so to match nature, we are to foster growth and to not kill. Doing so may "harm the Liver," according to the Nei Jing. This doesn't mean liver damage in the traditional western sense, but rather refers to moodiness, irritability, headaches, and menstrual difficulties to name a few symptoms.
The Liver in Chinese Medicine is associated with the spring, along with the Gallbladder, and the element of wood. Wood has an expansive energy and resonates with the new plant growth of the spring. In people this energy correlates with activity and growth as well.
Taking it Further
The Huang Di Nei Jing Su Wen was written around the 4th century B.C.E. when society was largely agrarian, but its wisdom around the seasons can still apply to modern times. Energetically we can extrapolate that the spring is the time to start new projects, express our creativity, and get some exercise. Sometimes our ideas lay dormant in winter as our energy and motivation wanes. This is the time of year to revisit those ideas and take the first steps. It may be that aligning oneself with the time of year in this way can be supportive to our success or at least motivation.
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