Summer, Fire, Spirit
by Tamara Watson, Tofino
Summer is very close. Vitality is suffusing all of our senses: sun
warming our skin, vegetation scenting the air, voices and laughter
resounding, seeing more people hovering around Sobo’s, savoring
the creations of ripe flavors. Summer Solstice marks the official beginning
of summer when the sun is farthest North, the Earth’s axis is
tilted closest to the sun, and the longest duration of light occurs
between sunrise and sunset - this year 13 hours and 1 minute on June
20th at 17:56. In other cultures also called Litha, Hefin, Leth, Midsummer’s
Eve, St. John’s Eve..., it is a time for celebration. According
to Chinese Five Element Theory, summer is the time of the fire element.
The Inner Classic, or Nei Ching says:
The supernatural forces of summer create heat in the Heavens and
fire upon Earth; they create the heart and the pulse within the body… the
red color, the tongue, and the ability to express laughter... they
create the bitter flavor (dark chocolate!) and the emotions of happiness
Summer and fire are associated with the heart, home of spirit. Ruled
by the heart meridian, spirit is like an emperor/ empress. It is
the seat of wisdom, truth and beauty that resides within us. When the
is balanced all other organs and processes function as they should.
The Chinese word for heart is xin, which is translated as heart-mind.
In addition to governing our physical bodies, the heart also affects
our consciousness. Spirit is our connection to the Tao, or Oneness,
and is equated metaphorically with light. It is the divine spark
within us, insight, awareness on all levels: mental, emotional, and
When our decisions, speech and actions are made in accordance with
our spirit we are healthy and at ease with ourselves. Life is effortless,
an adventure unfolding, a place of infinite possibilities. Our imagination
is our only limitation.
It sometimes happens that we doubt our intuition and disassociate
from our heart. We react instead according to learned ideas and emotions
triggered by fear and experiences we may not even consciously remember.
This disrupts the energetic flow within and interferes with the clarity
of our spirit’s message. Sometimes energy blocked in another
element will cause an imbalance of fire energy, which upsets the balance
of the heart.
Summer is about celebration. It is the time to express oneself creatively
and with passion, to be all that we dream, and are. When our hearts
are open, fire energy expands and radiates outward like light. There
is a natural awareness and caring about others. We want to reach
out, to share in the delight of life around us. Paul Pitchford in Healing
with Whole Foods says:
Those with healthy hearts are genuinely friendly. They are also humble,
not out of convention but because they actually feel small in comparison
to the wonders they perceive with their open hearts and aware minds.
Clarity is a central attribute of those with a harmonious heart-mind.
They seem to see effortlessly through problems to arrive at brilliant
When you encounter someone who has lost touch with their spirit,
whether they are withdrawn and contracted or scattered and frantic,
to your inner voice and let spirit direct your actions. Energy is magnetic.
The simplest of gestures can ignite or stabilize another’s heart.
Celebrate summer, express your spirit, radiate outwards...
someone deeply gives you strength. Being loved by someone deeply
gives you courage. Lao Tzu
Tamara Watson is a registered Jin Shin Do & Shiatsu Therapist,
certified in traditional Thai & Hot Stone Massage. She has a private
practice in Tofino and will be teaching a Jin Shin Do” Neck & Shoulder
Release Workshop in June (see Community Calendar. Phone her at 250.25-3976; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tofino health: Tamara Watson explains the concepts of xin and summer, fire, spirit in traditional chinese medicine.