In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.
– William Blake
In a world that is eternally cyclical, persistently dynamic, with time constantly marching on, how do we ever find balance? Ayurveda in its genius realizes that stopping, or pausing, isn’t really possible. What gives us the sense of pause, where rest and healing can occur, is alignment. Align with the movement of the celestial bodies that govern the rhythms of nature and you will have peace, balance, and the possibility for vibrant health.
The “celestial bodies” are the sun and the moon, particularly. Rising with the sun, and resting by the moon is essential. But the sun and the moon also determine the seasons and the tides, so paying attention to the seasons and living accordingly is also essential. Not only does seasonal living help us heal, maintain health, reduce stress and create ease, it awakens the heart. Because nature’s beauty inspires and makes us feel ourselves part of a loving world.
So when you eat seasonally, mindfully tasting nature’s intelligence, abundance and beauty, if you pay attention you might notice nature loving you through her balancing harvest. It’s another reminder that food is a love story!
Spring is a time for healing and growth, bringing life to its fullest blossom while sloughing off accumulations that weigh and slow us down. This, therefore, is the prime season for detoxification. We want to do what nature is doing: melt the freeze of winter and prepare for the liberation of Summer.
The key to healthy detoxification is Agni! Agni is the Sanskrit word for fire. It is generally used to describe our digestive fire, which resides in our solar plexus. Agni’s job is to help us digest and assimilate the nutrients in our food, and to support the cleansing organs, including the skin, liver, and kidneys, to move the waste out of our body.
You can strengthen your Agni in four simple ways…
Spring Wellness continues here.
Have you ever wondered why it is hotter in August than June when the sun was closest to the earth and the days were longest?
There is a simple principle in Ayurveda that states: “Heat accumulates.”
Wherever there is fire, and water or matter close enough to absorb its energy, heat will accumulate. Summertime is nature’s most poetic expression of that dynamic. After the Summer Equinox, when the sun gets as close to our part of the world as it will get in any given year, its fiery rays are absorbed by the earth and our oceans, holding its warmth, and continuing to accumulate heat incrementally over the course of these dog days.
Summer Wellness continues here.
During the golden season of Autumn, according to Ayurveda, strength, energy and vibrant health are maintained by increasing the elements of Fire and Water in ourselves to counter the increase of the Air element in the Fall environment.
We increase this “fire” by eating warm, cooked meals, seasoned with sweet, pungent spices, and including sour tastes as well.
Autumn Wellness continues here.
In the northern hemisphere it is winter, which means many places are wet, chilly and bare. Whether it is San Diego’s drizzling rains, Chicago’s icy nip or Boston’s landmark snowfall, the winter season is cold, windy, dry and gray.
Of the five elements, Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth, three are the most dynamic: Air, Fire and Water. These three move together in a dance that is sometimes even and tempered, but is more often unequal and imbalanced.
To continue reading about Winter Wellness, click here.