As we are moving into this health pandemic it behooves us to take extra special care of our health in order to maintain optimal immunity. A healthy lifestyle includes living and acting in harmony with the seasons and the cycles of nature. Spring is upon us, and is presenting us with an amazing opportunity to replenish ourselves. The season itself represents the energy of fertility, newness and growth, as nature flourishes all around us. A large part of this transmission comes from the wisdom teachings of Liu Ming.
Equinox means that yin and yang have become equal. This delineation indicates a special kind of harmony that does not mean the same amount, per se, but points to a state of equality in quality. This is a time of huge change in the botanical world, wherein insects that previously stirred beneath the ground, are now beginning to surface. In a sense, Heaven and Earth have swapped roles.
Spring equinox represents the refresh/rebirth quality of the ongoing relationship between yin and yang. Yang initiates the creation energy, and yin nourishes it. It is a time of recalibration after the long winter months spent hunkered down. When we are able to effectively reset this time of year it brings with it a great opportunity for freshness, health, and vitality.
Winter's lethargy is gone. Yang is now stable. In ancient China, the emperor chose which son was to be crowned prince during spring equinox. Similarly, during this time, we choose which projects we want to devote the rest of the year to. If we have not cultivated self-knowledge during winter's repose, this process can be difficult, as we will not be in touch with our deepest desires. The knowing of our path comes from the quietness and stillness we cultivate during the winter months. After a long winter spent internalizing yang, and cultivating an active inner world, yang is now climbing out into the external world with the brightness and the fortitude of the approaching spring.
If we have been cultivating spring properly through appropriate winter conduct, there is now a great deal of fertility available for us. Cultivating our yin over the winter months means we now have enough energy to nourish the bourgeoning creativity, and bring the ideas, dreams and visions that have been cooking to fruition.
Appropriate spring conduct means modesty in food and drink. It means reading books and listening to music. Discipline is made all the easier without yin's winter senility. The freshness of the spring makes it simpler to not identify with bad habits.
At spring equinox, yin and yang are still immature, making education very important. When yang is ascending, there can be tendencies towards outbursts, tantrums, and anger. This is a time to to train yang properly, and to cultivate respect. Appropriate behavior is modest, well educated and diverse rather than chaotic, and out of control.
Spring equniox is a time when yang can be managed, because it is still immature. If we let it mature without properly educating it, the energy it will be difficult to handle come July. This is an especially important time to not indulge our children, rather to educate them about respect and listening. If we do not assert appropriate boundaries with children now, by summer they could be out of control, demanding, and otherwise unmanageable.
Education, in this context, can also be expressed through divination and strategizing. It is a wonderful time of year to seek counsel, and advice, as the immature yang is prone to wasting energy on fluffy fantasies. Our ability to focus is back online, and it is appropriate to augment this focus with sage wisdom, and ancient philosophy. Yang needs to be managed. Get involved in the predisposition of your fate. Consult the I-Ching, get out your Tarot cards, pay a visit to your local shaman, seek wise counsel, consult astrologers and fortune tellers. Lean into the advice of your trusted sages.
During the Tang dynasty, Springtime court entertainments involved the recitation of poetry and the playing of new music.
Play/listen to new music. Let your hair down. Wear green.
We are embarking upon the doing action part of the year. Our duties will begin soon, only to conclude in the winter. Spring equinox is not a time for speeches or formality. It is a time for informal gatherings rife with music, play and poetry about love, newness, and rebirth.
The best time to do your practice is at dawn with the rising sun. The qi available this time of day is extremely replenishing.
During this time of the year, it is best to practice a steady amount of modest exercise, rather than large amounts (or even small bursts) of strenuous exercise. Making yourself tired disperses the yang. We want to increase our exercise this time of year, but not to the point where we are sweaty, and gasping for breath. If we tire ourselves out, we drive off yang. When we get a second wind, the second wind comes from too deep inside, and depletes us. We want to only exercise surface yang, rather than delving into any sort of deep yang arousal.
Eat fresh food that matures quickly, like green onion, asparagus and fresh herbs. In the botanical world, there is not yet much to harvest during spring equinox, except for green herbs. Incorporating fresh herbs into our meals is a yummy and flavorful way to bring the season's bourgeoning freshness to more mature nourishing winter foods.
Most of this information is coming from my studies with Liu Ming.
To deepen your experience of harmonizing with this seasonal shift with your personal health goals, I recommend scheduling an individual consultation.