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Spring and Chinese Medicine

clivias bell-shaped buds of green blossom in cinnabar-red chime sounds in the breeze

~Diana Richardson

We have just passed through the Spring Equinox, which signals that there is more light in our days. The first signs of spring have entered with the sight of blooms and the smell of jasmine in the air.

Melbourne has come alive with communal art and thoughts and insight. A conscious sprawling of positivity and hope for change.

The Melbourne Writers Festival this year was centred around the heart and many shows at the Melbourne Fringe Festival are shouting ideas of equality, quality, while many more are filled with hope and joy- loud music, pumping sounds, dance. On the Friday week just passed, over 100,000 people marched the streets in unison with voices that shouted to our political leaders that we want a healthy planet, that we are conscious of the world that we are living in, walking on and leaving behind for the future generations.

Spring is the time for openess, rebirth, a feeling of hopefulness in what is to come. These cycles, and our movements in them, are apt.

In TCM the season of Spring brings us back to Yang; to action, to movement, to change. The organs of the Liver and Gallbladder govern this season, and together they constitute the Wood Element. The Wood element organs are perhaps the most congested of all organs in this modern age. Such a statement over simplifies life's complex web and all that feeds into it, but in short, imbalance in this element can be seen as difficulty with emotional regulation and physical congestion. Whilst not the remedy itself, Spring does offers us the the opportunity to cleanse and renew the wood element, opening us up to the possibility of transformation through the visceral self, it is the season that supports us to transform.

As we move through this season we naturally feel inclined to eat lighter foods, gravitate towards greener fresher veggies, opt out of hot, salty and slow cooked foods which bring our energy inward. For in spring, we look to be upward and outward, joining in a kind of song with the ascending and expansive qualities of the season.

Raw foods such as sprouts and salads can be emphasised, short cooking times at high temperatures for our spring greens ideal.

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