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five element acupuncture

3 Ways to Practice The Art of Patience

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3 Ways to Practice The Art of Patience

“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart...live in the question.” 
― Rainer Maria Rilke

Have you ever felt like you had to explode, break through, create the new — but the timing wasn't quite right, or you rushed into it and your plan didn't end up blossoming?

That's why Patience is one of the aspects of the Wood Element or Springtime Energy — the powerful upward, exploding energy. Like we see in a sprouting tulip, 5 Element Theory understands that brining a vision into fruition requires patience. We must hold the vision and let it ripen before it's ready.

(To understand the Five Elements in context, check out a complimentary copy of the e-Book, Five Element Acupuncture & You. [use code: 'ancientwisdom'])

Patience is a powerful tool.

With patience, we can allow our ideas to percolate to the perfect moment of creation.

We can sit and get to know a stranger, someone different than us, erasing fear and prejudices. With patience comes wisdom, inner strength, and focus. Patience brings better mental and emotional endurance. We all know what it can be like to feel quick to anger. Especially if you're a parent - kids test patience like it's their sole purpose in life. If we actively cultivate patience with tools like breath, curiosity, and choice — we become happier, calmer, and more at home, feeling connected to life!

Now, more than ever, we need to Practice the Art of Patience! We are practiced at never having to wait for anything. We are physically habituated towards instant gratification. Think about it. Any information is available in seconds from our phone. We can purchase almost anything online and have it delivered to us that same day. There's no more going out untethered to everyone you know and love. Our nervous systems wire themselves according to what we repeat most often. This is where we have power.

3 ways to Practice Patience

1. Shift your perspective on a problem (How To): When we shift our perspective, we can unhook ourselves from the well worn grooves and patterns of our nervous system and try on something else.
     a. Think of a challenging situation or problem in your life.
     b. 'Open your mind' by saying "This could mean anything!"
     c. Release any judgements you may already have about the problem.
     d. Be curious and ask yourself, "What is a new way I could look at this problem?" or "What haven't I thought of yet?"

2. Grow Strawberries. Or any other fruits or veggies you enjoy! When you nurture a plant, it  brings you into nature's rhythms. PLUS you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Here's the How-To.

3. Be Creative. Paint. Cook. Knit. Draw. Sing. Write Poetry.  To make good art, we must be patient. Fortunately, creativity has a way of inspiring it.

To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it. 
- Kurt Vonnegut

Village Wellness  6 Waterloo Ave Berwyn, PA 19312

Village Wellness
6 Waterloo Ave
Berwyn, PA 19312

 

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The Art of Allowing - How to Let Go

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The Art of Allowing - How to Let Go

by Lance Isakov, L.Ac.

In 5 Element Acupuncture theory, Autumn, represented by the element Metal, is chance to shed what is no longer absolutely essential. The energy (Qi) of our brothers and sisters of the plant world, turns inward and descends down deep into their roots. The trees let go and their leaves fall to the ground creating space for new growth. This letting go also creates rich fertilizer for the future generations. The descent of Qi allows for rest and rejuvenation during the Winter months. This space and stillness gestates energy that is explosively released with the birth of Springtime. But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

What is so cool (and often forgotten) is that we ARE nature. What happens outside is mirrored inside. It's not uncommon to feel connected to loss and stripping away while a growing appreciation of beauty comes to the forefront. In Five Element Medicine we understand these things as the movement of the Metal Element. This part of the cycle creates our ability to let go of what no longer serves so that we too can make room for rest, rejuvenation and eventually the re-birth of own new power and possibilities. 

Now letting go is easier said than done, right? Our idea of letting go often means severing or separating thoughts, ideas, things, or even people that we no longer have or want in our lives. But, as you may have experienced, this can be a tricky process. Often, the moment we try to change something it fights back and holds on even harder.
 

So how do we Let it Go? Well the first step is substituting the idea of letting it go with the concept of letting it be. When we let things be, what we are actually letting go of is our expectation of the issue, rather than severing or separating the issue itself. 

This is what the Buddha mean when he taught about letting go of attachment. So the object or issue is still present however our relationship to it has changed. 

An example: If I am holding a pencil in a tight fist, how do I let it go, what do I do? I open my hand. I let go of how I am relating to the pencil, while allowing the pencil to be exactly as it is.

Here's a contemplation practice you can use to apply this perspective to your own life. 

The Art of Allowing: 

  1.  Sit comfortably and easily
  2. Set a timer for 5-10 minutes
  3. Ask yourself the question: "What does it feel like, right now, to allow everything to be exactly as it already is?
  4. Pay attention to what arises and continue to allow everything to be as it is.
  5. When the timer goes off, take a breath, notice how you feel, and then arise. 

Paying attention to your thoughts can be just like watching the leaves dropping from the trees. It provides us with immediate access to space in our experience. Eventually this space will give rise to future possibilities and new growth in our lives. But first things first — let go.

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