- chaya teahouse
- tea club
- winter rest
Our intuition, along also with the established wisdom of the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) system, inform our choices and recommendations.
Thus, wood involves the aspects of germination, extension, softness, and harmony. Fire involves the aspects of heat and flaring. Earth involves growing, nourishing and changing. Metal is associated with cleaning up, killing, strength and firmness. Water is associated with cold, moisture and downward flowing.
Wood, then, for example, is associated with the liver, gall bladder, eyes and tendons, the taste of sourness, the direction east and the colour green.
As for the seasons, wood represents spring, fire is summer, earth late summer, metal autumn and water winter.
Between each of the elements there exists the close relationships of mutual generation, mutual subjugation, extreme subjugation, and counter subjugation. Mutual generation means multiplication and promotion, while mutual subjugation means mutual restriction and restraint. Thus, wood generates fire, fire generates earth, earth generates metal, metal generates water, and water generates wood. Wood subjugates earth, metal subjugates wood, etc. Extreme subjugation and counter subjugation are the pathological conditions of the normal mutual generation and subjugation relationships. An example of counter subjugation is: when metal is weak and insufficient, it leads to the hyperactivity of wood.
As wood (the liver) generates fire (the heart), a TCM doctor will seek to treat and strengthen a patient’s liver when they present with a weak heart. Since water (the kidneys) subjugates fire, the doctor will use Yang ingredients (fire) to try to curb excess water in the kidneys.
These rhythms are all described and explained by the forces of Yin and Yang. Yin is that part of a cycle or process in which energy is being accumulated, assimilated and stored for later use. Yang is that part in which energy is being expended in order to create a manifest reaction.
Yin is often associated with rest, receptivity and quietude, while Yang is associated with action, creativity and movement. Yin provides sustenance for the Yang and the Yang protects the Yin. Yin is the cool, feminine principle, Yang the hot, masculine. They always exist together and their relationship is never static. Though the two forces are acting in harmony with one another, they are also always competing with one another for dominance.
In normal health, the interaction of the two forces will remain within well-defined limits. Health is in fact dependent on the maintenance of the correct balance of Yin and Yang forces.