Autumn! Arguably the most beautiful of seasons. What is plainly apparent during this time of the yearly cycle is change. It is the time of Metal, of the Lungs and the Large Intestine. Autumn is positioned between the extremes of summer and winter, guiding and encouraging our internal landscape to change in lockstep with our surrounding environment. As the colder, more yin time of the year approaches, all plants and creatures begin the necessary task of preparing for the cold. Simply observing a tree can tell us everything we need to know about what is going on inside of our bodies.
Here in western North Carolina we stand in awe of the shifting red, orange, and yellow as the trees begin shedding their leaves. We admire the beauty and serenity of it all, but perhaps we miss the message that She is sending us. Let go. Go ahead, just let go. Look how beautiful everything can be if we all just let go! The tree sends its energy upward and outward all spring and summer long, reaching for the sun. Our leaves and our identity signatures develop, and we reach outward to show our worth. Now that the cold bleakness of winter lie ahead, which is beautiful in its own stillness and serenity, we must turn and focus our energy inward.
The tree lets go of its identity signature and sends its energy down to the roots. There is no need to attract any more birds, insects, or other friendly pollinators. It knows now is the time to nourish it’s own self, to prepare for the subsequent season.
Our Lungs, the viscera associated with the season of autumn have the same energetic action as the lesson the tree gives us during this time. It must disperse outward to release and let go of that which we do not need, and descend downward, sending our vital energies to our own internal “root” so that we may survive the coming winter. If we humans go through our daily lives ignorant of this energetic shift, we place the Lungs in a difficult position, which may compromise our health. This is when the cold or flu might make an appearance.
So pay attention this fall – if you find yourself “coming down with something,” take stock of where you’ve been placing your energy. Have you been constantly going and going with little rest? Not making time for yourself? Sending your energy ever-outward rather than turning inward and nourishing yourself? Send your energy downward and store it in your “root.” That way, you’ll ensure a comfortable winter, and a bountiful spring on the other side of the thaw.