Complementary Therapists > Five Element > Earth Element
Earth Element Introduction
The Earth element is represented by the capacity to link, nurture, foster and maintain. This element confers a sense of fidelity, duty and dependability. Earth element people can be relied and depended upon to be there when required. People influenced by Earth display tendencies of carefulness and caution in their desires and methods.
People that are influenced by the Earth element are sensuous and will enjoy a sumptuous meal and a good bottle of wine more that any other element type.
Earth element people are logical and are generally appreciated. At times they can be somewhat selfish when focussing their own personal objectives. They can be more fixed upon the end rather than the means. Earthers also display prodigious powers of recovery.
Earth Element - Common Associations
The following are often associated with the Earth element; The colour yellow, adulthood, centre, ground, ripening, Mother Earth, taste, late summer, gathering, harvest, balance, nutrition, harmony, late afternoon, mediation of energies, consumption, digestion of food of the body and the mind, Saturn, late afternoon, binding together, humidity, steadiness, change.
Body Parts Associated with Earth Element
The spleen is the Yin acting like the store manager ensuring that body maintains sufficient necessary resources. The spleen supplies the nourishment we need to sustain our bodies. The primary function of the spleen is to convert our food in to Ki and to transmit nutrients to the body's vital organs.
A healthy functioning spleen ensures a good memory and an ability to reason clearly. A weak or damaged spleen can manifest itself by muddled thinking and lack of clarity of thought. Physically a weakened spleen can mean poor digestion, inordinate menstrual bleeding, and fluid retention.
The stomach is the Yang partner for the spleen. It is the stomach's job to gather enough resources for the body to function. It is not the stomach's job to store these resources. The stomach controls the rate of food ingestion. This also includes the mental food that we need to thrive. The Ki of the stomach reaches right down into the large intestine to dispose of waste however this process can reverse causing hiccups and / or nausea.
The Earth element also rules large muscles, the mouth and lips, and eyelids. It also rules lymphatic fluids and saliva.
The Earth Element Personality Type
Earth element personality types are very good at bringing people together. They act like a glue amongst people as they tend to be very likeable. Earth people are natural peacemakers and use their charm and disarming smiles to diffuse difficult situations.
Compassion and care are hallmarks of the earth types. They aim to bring calmness and harmony to people and situations that need them. They have numerous friends that are trusting of them largely because the help people to get in touch with their inner issues. Earth element people need to balance this quality lest they are seen as interfering and too intrusive. If this happens Earth people may begin to question their own worth possibly leading to a sense that they are running their lives for the good of others.
If this happens the accompanying emotions of unhappiness can lead to pointless worry and feelings of lack of worth. This can lead to eating disorders such as overeating followed by excessive dieting or indulgence in fad diets. Female earth types are particularly prone to this.
Earth element types can be important in bringing calm and harmony to our chaotic world but they must always remember to look after their own requirements as well as those of others.
Health Issues for Earth Element Types
Looking again at the Control Cycle when the Earth element becomes dominant it will invade the Water element. This will lead to the spleen restricting the workings of the kidneys. This physical manifestation can lead to fluid retention. It can affect the personality of the Earth type to become too interfering in other people's business.
The invaded Water element may no longer be able to support the Wood element thereby inhibiting spontaneity and the taking of risk. This will result in a stagnation of Ki. Hypertension can increase as the heart must work harder to circulate the body's blood supply through the stagnation. Ultimately this may lead to an enlargement of the heart. From an emotional viewpoint this can lead to the Earth element type to a blurring of boundaries and trying to bring everyone into the family for nurturing.
Earth Element - Visualisation Exercises
Visualise taking a stroll in the rural countryside in the late summer during the harvest. Observe the workers in the field tending to their crops. Notice the calm, yet determined, way they bring in the harvest. There is a serenity to their labours and no sign of the frenetic energy of the fire element. It is a stable productive approach.
Attend any harvest festival. Notice that the overarching concept of the celebrations is a 'thank you' to the Earth for providing it's bounty to sustain communities through the harder times approaching.
Try some gardening - yours or a friend's. Feel the earthy quality of working with soil. Visualise how the various gardening activities are like our own physical and mental processes. Feel how grounded you are when in touch with the Earth.
Earth Element Conclusion
The Earth element's power resides in the ability to engender links with others and to nurture them. This strength can become destructive if they do not do enough inner nurturing and thereby expending all of their energy on others.
Five Element Theory - Five Element Chart
Wood Element - Fire Element - Earth Element - Metal Element - Water Element
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