An article by Carrie Gauthier.
Carrie Gauthier: Storytelling, amplification and building communities–one word at a time.
Listening to what our bodies tell us is important to make sure we are nourishing them properly and all systems are in harmony. The spring season is the time of year for the type of introspection that leads to rebirth and revitalization. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) encourages us to turn our gazes inward and use our current emotional states as an overall wellness barometer. It is in this way that we can address any concerns that are vying for our attention and healing can begin on the emotional, physical, mental and spiritual levels. Just as each emotion is connected to one of our vital organs, the five elements show us how they are interconnected.
Our organs and their associated emotions
It is important to be gentle with ourselves when we recognize that we are experiencing an imbalance of unhealthy emotions. With self-compassion, we can begin to investigate root causes and realign our intentions. Turning to the healing practices of TCM shows us how the interior and exterior worlds are connected and how all is energy, or qi.
When we meditate on these principles, we may take into consideration a host of influencing factors, including the current season, geographic location and climate, our current physical and emotional states, and many other aspects impacting us in the present moment. To identify imbalances and to examine their connection to and engagement with each other, we turn to the Five Elements, through which we can gain a greater understanding of the laws of nature.
Living with purpose
The Five Elements or energies in nature are Fire, Water, Wood, Earth, and Metal. They illuminate how the systems in our bodies work together and how they are connected to one another; just as they show us how we are connected to the natural world and how the natural world is connected to the universe.
When we discover that we are not living a life that honors our true purpose, this delicate balance can become unhinged, and our internal systems may attempt to get our attention through an external manifestation, in the form of an ailment. This should be the catalyst that triggers the change that can turn what would appear to be a dark period, on the surface, into the growth we are capable of, allowing us to let go of that which no longer serves us, and begin to blossom and flourish with our true spiritual purpose.
To plant the seeds for an improved vitality, we can turn to TCM practitioners for guidance and support. It is helpful to see this as an opportunity to evolve rather than an obstacle. To unblock the obstruction of qi, we may want to try herbs, aromatherapy, nutrients, energy work like Qiquong or Pranic healing, massage therapy, spiritual guidance, and acupressure/acupuncture.
How practitioners help restore order
TCM practitioners will do an inventory on your overall health and make observations based on factors that can include the conditions of your skin and tongue (clarity and texture), your pulse points, your diet, genetics, what maladies you are experiencing (headaches, insomnia, anxiety), and other inward and outward manifestations. All treatment plans are unique and may include a combination of therapies and nutritional recommendations.
It is essential to remember we are only given this one beautiful vessel, so listen to your body and remember that it is connected to nature. The changes occurring in nature will be reflected in our bodies, and just as nature has a regenerative ability, so do our bodies.