The energy of summer is equivalent to the fire element in Chinese medicine. Fire can be warming like a campfire. It can be explosive and as you might imagine, life threatening when out of control. It can provide warmth and light like the blazing sun. It can go out in a blink when there is too much water or no fuel. It is the only element with 4, rather than 2 corresponding organs – the heart, the small intestines, the triple burner, and the heart protector. The energy is upward which is the energy when one jumps up for joy whether it be because of pure laughter, fun, love, joy or enthusiasm. Do you often seek out a party or maybe you long to be loved. Do you live in summer? Are you tending your fire?
In Chinese medicine, the heart is not just an efficient pump that circulates blood. The heart is the source for warmth and unconditional love. J.R. Worsley, one of the first acupuncturists in the western world refers to the heart as the “supreme controller” or the “emperor of the kingdom.” It governs the blood which is the medium to communicate with all the other “ministers of the kingdom” who can assist with spreading this warmth and unconditional love to every cell of our being and to the tip of every finger and toe. With a healthy “kingdom”, the people manifest joy and enthusiasm in work and life. There is a spark, and a visible twinkle in the eyes. There is a sort of letting go of control, restful sleep, the ability to love and be loved, and a calm spirit. When the heart is sick, the whole body is affected. With chaos in the “kingdom”, there can be hysteria. People may feel panic and start controlling others. There is no joy or enthusiasm, and life can utterly fall apart.
When the heart is happy and healthy, relationships blossom, there is clarity of the mind, and your spirit is settled. If you live in summer, you are meant to bring joy, love, warmth, light, maturity, and propriety to those around you. You are the radiance, the spark that ignites the fire, and a mature flower in full bloom.
Take mindful care of your heart and see an acupuncturist! Many cardiologists are now recommending acupuncture for their patients. The strength of Chinese medicine is the ability to see imbalance before any “diagnosis” arises. Western medical practitioners often make a diagnosis when pathology manifests physically, a later stage of imbalance.
Things to consider in summer to support your Fire:
- Make it a priority to have fun! Do what it is that brings you joy!
- Surround yourself with those who make you laugh, receiving their warmth and joy.
- Give of yourself by giving someone unconditional love.
- Meditate 10 minutes today to clear your mind and settle your spirit.
- Get moving! Circulate that blood whether it be exercising, dancing or surfing at the beach!
- Eat red foods! Beets, carrots, raspberries, pomegranates, adzuki/kidney beans, red meat or liver, and longan fruit all nourish your blood (especially menstruating women)!