The energy of spring tells us a lot about the energy of the wood element. It is related to the liver and the gallbladder in the physical body. The unique property of birth and creation in all living things its movement upward and rising as well as movement downward and inward is unique to the wood element. It’s important to understand and feel this energy within us. When we can feel this movement we can have a better understanding we are in balance and out of balance.
The Chinese very often used the metaphor of trees and plants to describe the energy of the Wood Element: The Trunk carries the water up to the leaves. This motion is always rising to create life of the tree. The trunk is made of many layers and the inner layers feed the tree. The outer layer of bark is dead but provides protection from the environment. The trunk is the energy source, its strength and structure that creates, protect and support life. It is full of activity that has purpose; creates birth and growth that goes beyond its boundaries. The sap is carried up through specific rings of the tree. It relies on the sun and water to sustain its life.
What happens when one layer doesn’t get fed, the bark becomes injured or branches are deliberately cut from the tree? What if trees suddenly have no water or sap flowing through its rings? What if there is no sun to feed the tree? What if there is a fire and the tree and plants are burnt? Our body, mind or the spirit can be affected just like the plants and trees. What is we we don’t have any food water or sunshine? Can we rise to the occasion of life?
The green leaves and are responsible for photosynthesis. This is the process of feeding nearly all life on earth. Converting the suns energy into their own life process the plants on earth convert carbon dioxide to oxygen. This is the essential air we need to survive. One tree produces enough oxygen to keep 2-4 people alive. Creating life!
Branches are the connected to the trunk by tree tissue. Branches produce leaves to feed themselves and the branch itself. Healthy branches are moveable and flexible in all kinds of weather. If the branches are crowded or leaves become brittle and weak, eventually they will break.
Just as ourtendons and ligaments are the connection between bones and muscle- the things that make us move. They receive little blood supply and if they are not nurtured and cared for they will tear and become damaged. Our tendons are characteristic of strength, durability and resistance. Our minds also need flexibility and movement to be able to adapt to the changes in the environment on any given moment. What happens when we break or things don’t go our way, we may get angry, shout or we may get frustrated. This shows us the wood element in process.
This was a journal note from a morning walk I did recently one spring:
I woke today to the sun streaming in the windows. I can see the sun rising over the Wasatch Mountains in the eastern slope. Snow barely capped the peaks and the clouds moved gently through the air illuminated by the rising sun. The apricot tree is fully blossomed with light pink fragrant flowers; the petals are blowing in the wind. Small dry tree branches lie on the ground after the windstorm last night. New branches are starting to shoot from the trees. The grass has become so green and the small seedlings of the scrub oak trees are popping out of the soil. Birds are chirping loudly while others are busy picking up small branches and dog hair making a nest in the birdhouse. So much life to see, all this life bustling around and planning for the seasons to come.
The liver and gallbladder are the organs/officials of this energy in our body.