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Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
Karen is a yogini, writer, student, teacher and meditator. She founded Garden Street School of Yoga in 2000. Karen lives with her husband Chris. They have two amazing sons, Eli and Leo (both of them young men).

Feb 9, 2010

Green Wood

Even though it's February, the energy of Spring is definitely here. In Chinese Medicine the season of Spring is correlated with the Wood element - (think "trees" here) - and with the energetic channels correlated with the Liver and Gall Bladder.  The correlated color for the Wood energy is

Wood energy is so expansive,  When not cloaked or obstructed, it is pure generosity.  Its bright green energy moves with an expansive force from seed to root to shoot to blossom to fruit.  It roots down with vigor and rises up and out in all directions.

In our bodies, the wood energy really gets moving in the spring - like sap rising.  I feel this even if I have not been outside or seen a single green bud, even if there's still snow on the ground.  I feel it in my body - my own little conscious piece of the planet - sometimes as tight neck or maybe as an unreasonable irritability (because wood, the "will to become" - when obstructed, generates heat and irritability which, ultimately, can be a force which pushes through obstruction.  Sometimes though, it just blows off in useless or harmful forms of aggression, for example road rage.

When Wood energy starts rising it often has to push up against accumulation from the winter of hibernation - like extra weight for example.  Chinese medicine calls it ama and Ayurveda calls it phlegm.  (Sounds nicer in Ayurveda - but it's the same gunk).  This obstruction through which Spring energy must push is like the dead debris and compacted earth in your garden in Spring.  Bright Green pushes up through Dark Damp.  Chinese Medicine says this season is Yang within Yin - bright, warm and vigorous growth pushing up from within dark, cold and damp hibernation.

So it is no surprise that we have urges to Spring clean and to embark on cleansing programs in the spring.  It's a perfect expression of alignment with nature - even if on a conscious level you just want to drop some pounds.

Working with Anusara principles - the Spring energy and Spring Cleaning works this way
  • Make Space - (Open to Grace)
  • Compress (Muscular Energy)
  • Twist (Organic Energy)
And then do it again some more!

Also - and this is really cool - Inner Spiral and Outer spiral of the lower body dynamically open and animate the Liver and Gall Bladder Channels.  Those 2 spirals follow the meridians and, if you fully engage them you will feel them open not only the external meridians (on the inner and outer legs - but also you will feel an opening up through the hips and trunk, as the action of the spirals open the internal channels also.  This is exciting.  Trust me.

This week I'll go green........teach detox-asana - lots of twists.

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