Inherent in Five Element Acupuncture is an understanding of the what the Taoist called The Way of Heaven. A realization of the connectedness of all of life, from the influences of the seasons, the stars and planets to our daily life here on earth.
The Taoists teach us that all of life is change. The five elements are the map of this unending change. It shows us how change manifests, in what order and what the appropriate actions are in each phase of change.
One of the greatest books describing the movement of the elements is the I Ching. A philosophical, religious and medical text, assembled over thousands of years of observed change by the ancient sages. The I Ching, is often simply called the ‘book of change”. Change is certain and the natural state of life; only the principles of change never change
The 29th Hexagram of the I Ching has much to teach us about the time we are living in now.
Hexagram 29 is comprised of the trigram water over the trigram water. Double water; uncertainty, fear, anxiety, depleted resources. The theme is falling, but not drowned; in danger but not lost. This hexagram advises us to sooth our hearts and minds and maintain our confidence. With faith, caution and trust this situation can be survived.
The I Ching hexagrams are not positive or negative in themselves. They are hopeful, no matter how dark they may sound. What they tell us is what actions and virtues are called for in this situation. Knowing these actions allows us to be in the Tao of the moment and prosper regardless of the present situation.
Taoist master A. Huang puts it simply:
Things cannot go on forever in an excess state. Thus, after a great exceeding, darkness follows.
Be sincere and truthful,
Rely on heart and mind,
Prosperous and smooth
Deeds will be honored.
There is darkness all around us now and certainly danger as well. The I Ching suggests you take no rash action at this time but follow the way of heaven. Engage in prosperous deeds. You may be poised over a pit but it is not bottomless. There is hope. This situation will not go on forever.
What is called for now is right action. In times of darkness strive for little things; tend to your home and garden, be sincere and truthful. Let your heart lead your actions.
In the words of a modern day Japanese sensei : “then I guarantee: no problem”