Acupuncture’s Five Elements

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Acupuncture is on my mind this month! I (Louise) have been taking a 2 year course in Stockbridge, MA with Lonny Jarrett and it is very thought-provoking. I am enjoying re-learning about the five elements and how to look at my clients differently from that perspective. So, instead of always talking about food and recipes, let’s delve a little deeper into my other life which is acupuncture!
There are five elements – Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood and they each have specific characteristics that are present in nature and in each of us. We can look at each person and see which element predominates. It is almost like saying that each person looks through glasses that are colored by one of the five elements. So for example, Earth is related to the color yellow, the emotion of worry, singing in the voice, and sweetness in odor. So in a person who is more like Earth, I would expect to find these attributes. Each element is also related to a season: winter is water, spring is wood, summer is fire, late summer or harvest is earth and fall is metal.  During that season, the element predominates and we may notice more attributes in ourselves and others. Before spring ends at the end of this week, let’s talk more about the element of wood.
The color of wood is green, the odor is rancid, the sound is shouting, the emotion is anger and the taste or flavor is sour. Spring is a time of growth, when the shoots that have been sleeping all winter, begin to awaken. In order for those shoots to survive, they must have within them the ability to bend and stay supple. Any rigidity in the plant will cause the new growth to break off and die. The wood element gives the plants and us the flexibility in life to grow. If we hold on too tightly and become rigid, nothing happens.
The liver and the gallbladder are the organs associated with the wood element. The liver helps us to plan and the gallbladder makes decisions.  You may find that during this time of year you either are great at planning and decision-making or you always get stuck. This is pointing to an imbalance in the wood energy. You may also notice in spring the tendency towards irritation, frustration or anger in yourself or in others which also is pointing towards an imbalance.
How to balance the wood element? Acupuncture, energy work and food can all help to smooth out the wood element.  Check out some of
the recipes posted on the website and blog.
Stay tuned for more information on the five elements specifically the Fire element which is predominate during the summer months!
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About acunut

Acupuncturist, Nutritionist and co-director of Wellspring Holistic Center with Anita Bondi