Almost a year since I put anything out here, what got me started today, of all days?
Well, it was finally getting around to reading 2021's Lunar New Year forecast (to be fair, year 4719) posted by acupuncturist CT Holman way back in January. There's always a gaggle of predictions coming at you in January, like a flock of geese, each one proclaiming loud and long. And just like the sonic Doppler effect, they're gone, just like all those other New Year's predictions and resolutions.
Today (3/17/2021), at 42+`N latitude with temps well north of 40`F and calm sunny skies, was the right day. Local flora and fauna, sky and land are beginning to stir, hearts and minds are lofting with spring's rising energy, we itch to start doing. As I start to wake and crawl out from under my winter rock, I wanted to know what CT thinks is in store for 2021. Take a few minutes to read it now, as you'll have some background for what follows.
What wise seeds, ready for planting, were born out of 2020 for you? Everyone knows, it was no small year of gestation and delivery, to say the least. So many lessons laid out in the inaugural year of this current traditional cycle! This second year, the Ox year, is one for planting and cultivating with purpose of nourishing into the remaining 10 years. What are your best cultivation skills and practices? Which ones are coming into place? Can you figure out which routines still need to be incorporated?
2020 probably showed you a whole lot of what you don't want your life to be. 2021 is the time to start growing and embodying what you do want. Plan for the long game, for who will you be at the other end of this Lunar Cycle, Metal Boar year 2031. Yes, it IS work, it's crucial work for each of us as individuals and as members of Group Gaia. Look through some of my previous blogs for ideas of how to answer these questions. Ask around, there's a lot of clever and experienced folks around and I bet you know some of them.
So you realize one of the secret, underlying, generally-thought-of-as-tiresome concepts here is the cultivation of “good” habits which will aloow for efficiently carrying out “good” intentions with a minimum of tears, yes? Effortlessly easy to say and think, we assume equally hard to actually do because isn't success predicated on struggle and great effort? Well, yes and no. Set yourself up to succeed; a lot of heavy lifting later on can be avoided with cleverness up front. As James Clear of “Atomic Habits” reminds us, often it's not about the target behavior itself where the struggle is, it's about learning to initiate the habit's action within an effective environment.
Make it easy, the choice is all yours.
Isn't that the big underlying unspoken (or screamed) question?
Has toilet paper become the new arbiter of covid-19 civilization? Do you have enough? Where can we get more? I feel guilty every time I use some, Lord please don't let me have the runs
Uh oh, low on chips, better run out... Oh, can't, too many people at the store already and I'm afraid of exposure! Buy MORE next time! (ooh, or eat less?)
They say Gaia is self-cleaning. Well, actually I think Gaia is always self-cleaning, it was just so damn hard to keep up with everything when all those human kids were running around like banshees, leaving their things everywhere and making a lot of messes.
Three weeks into “official” sequestering hereabouts, I've not seen or heard any reports of violence in reaction to “lock-down.” Does that mean it's not happening? Yeah, I don't think so either.
Where do we order reinforcements for emotional resilience?
Oh, maybe we could give Gaia a hand, she does work hard to keep us fed, clothed, sheltered and alive. Even a time-out in the corner (because that's where she's put us) to let her have a moment to take a breath. I think she wants us to take a breath too. And maybe think about ourselves and things in general.
Think about it, does She give more than she takes?
How much, honestly, do you really need in things? Where's the line between reasonable utility and that's-simply-wasteful-lazy-and-self-indulgent? Have a feeling it's not a narrow, sharp delineation but more of a gradient.
How much we you really need in things RIGHT NOW? Instant gratification is reptile brain and addiction behavior. Strung out toads, really? Is that what “progress” has wrought?
How much is your need to help others and their Resources? That's a big wheel that always needs help in turning.
I'm not going to tell you what you need, when you need it and how to get it. That's really and honestly for Each of Us to determine and have responsibility of. Honestly.
I will tell you, re-visit your own Source for answers, they're available. And pick up a little while you're there, maybe open a window.
“Crucible” came to mind last week when covid-19's wave was starting to really hit my area. Not Arthur Miller's play "The Crucible" so much, although its test and trial aspects are certainly apt. More thinking back to my experience as a goldsmith, I did a lot of lost-wax casting during that time and a crucible is a crucial part of the process.
What happens in a crucible? It's where metal is melted and held until ready to inject into the mold. Certainly there is blending of components if you're doing an alloy mixture but it's also intensely transformative. Alchemically, the metal goes from one state to another, solid to liquid. We don't speak of the alchemical-like changes of water, so easily moving from solid to liquid to gas (and back again), as those states are more common, less magical somehow. Transformative, nevertheless.
Another very important event in a crucible is purification, not because it's hot and impurities are burnt off. Because flux has been added to attract impurities much the way egg whites can clean consomme. Flux also eases the molten flow into the mold, ensuring a complete cast. We are definitely in times of flux!
So spend time in your crucible, you'll come out transformed but the same basic material! In fine mettle we might say.
Shakespeare's Three Witches in Macbeth, right? Actually, the quote is "Double, Double, Toil and Trouble." No thanks, don't need extra trouble or toil these days!
Watching the waterfall in cozy downtown Ipswich MA the other day, a lovely late winter sunny morning, beautiful clear colors. It occurred to me that upstream all appears peaceful. Then change hits, the actual cataract event (cataract meaning waterfall is one sense of the word) and nothing's the same anymore. Turbulence and roiling. But if you pay attention, you'll see the water bubbles up as it's turned over and over in a type of refresh.
How apt an image, especially for this time of year, for this time in human history. All things are changing, hitting the fan and going overboard. Change is like like a waterfall, there comes a point at which the only way out is through. You can only move ahead.
Are you having your own personal "cataract event?" What's bubbling up through the roil and turmoil? It's interesting, another meaning of cataract is opaqueness in the eyes' lens; vision is obscured. Tumbling down a waterfall, vision is no doubt obscured, likely all senses come into disarray. Hitting bottom and bubbling up, there's a changed perspective. What's it look like? Things will sort out eventually, new sensibilities will come into focus. Maybe even a place to land up downstream.
You may have gotten the idea from previous posts I'm a fan of Yin and Yang. Inseparable, distinct, they manage and engender one another. Essentially, if something's got a front, there's most assuredly a back. Outside comes complete with inside. You know what is hot because you've experienced cold. Water and fire each control the other. Polar opposites create attraction and action.
These times, these crazy chaotic and polarizing times at hand, remind me of the bio-process in cellular division (mitosis). Internal structures migrate to opposing poles before dividing into two new versions of the original cell. I imagine it's a bit chaotic in the cell before everything sorts itself out. Sound familiar? There's a cycling from whole to polarized then to whole again and so on. Remember, the Yin Yang symbol is curved to indicate it's always cycling. Similar in spirit, the lemniscate, symbol of infinity implies cycling motion.
So while “these times” may be overall somewhat less than fun, we know it won't always be like this as cycles come and go. However, there are alligators to be navigated and it's easy to be afraid. Take heart: if there's fear there's courage around somewhere. If there's no fear, courage is not needed, it has no context. Erik Francis, an astrologer based in Kingston, NY, wrote, “Aspects in the Saturn-Pluto cycle tend to manifest fear, contraction, negativity, and at the same time steely, stalwart heroism, often without a name... The correct response is courage. And it is available.” i Italics mine, to emphasize Yin Yang component.
Yeah, easy to say, harder to do, I know. I'd like to add a couple more words to the discussion on how to go from Fear to Courage: Trust and Clarity. Trust was an insistent presence as I turned these ideas over in my mind and heart (ooh, more cycling!). Trust yourself, you've gotten this far. The more we are Clear in ourselves of who we are, what we believe, what our capacity is, the more we clearly face what terrifies us, see through fear's distraction and initiate effective change.
There's an associated emotion in each of the Chinese Five Elements; Fear belongs to Water. You may remember from previous posts each element engendering the next is one of the special distinctions of this system. Courage belongs to Wood and is the child of Water. Wood, as you remember from the previous post, is about initiating action, having the courage to act. Action moves us on to the next element, Fire, associated with Joy. So Courage moves us out from Fear and on to Joy. Energy from Water moves into Wood and on to Fire. Water and Fire are in an archetypal Yin-Yang relationship. Courage is an antidote to Fear and takes us on toward Joy at the other pole. Clarity clears the pathway for smoother sailing. Recently I read (and sadly cannot remember who) the recommendation to clear out that which weighs down, is no longer useful so as to run lean into 2020, taking but one suitcase holding that which serves best. Clarity. Trust. Courage. Joy.
Good luck and mind the door as you head out into the next round. The runway to 2020 is cleared! Happy New Year!
I'm new to author, mythic storyteller and heartfelt deep thinker Michael Meade. Find out more at his website and find him on YouTube. He is so much more eloquent than I even think I am.
i (https://planetwaves.net/take-heed-plus-your-january-monthly-horoscope/ accessed 12/28/19)
Interesting how recent conversations with various friends resonate with past conversations with myself over the years, to wit, that Voice in my Head, dizzying, swirling and generally non-productive, saying “woulda, coulda, shoulda and what were you thinking?.” At best, this feels kinda like lost time stuck in traffic; at worst, we're talking endless hell. We've all been in that bad traffic jam and can't wait to get free. Or maybe instead of traffic, it's endless Pro/Con lists or endlessly searching oracles for the answer. These are helpful tools, don't get me wrong, but sometimes we just don't get anywhere. So then what?
I think it's deceptively easy watching others, with their skillfully efficient comings and goings, to-ings and fro-ings, and see there everything we lack in ourselves. Why we aren't somewhere, someone else already? We don't appreciate the degree to which dilly-dallying, second-guessing and self-recrimination are pandemic. Could those fellow travelers actually be venting invective instead of singing along to the radio? Maybe each of us are not the sole individual who is dissatisfied in the present and scared of the future. Fear (I commonly refer to it as the primal emotional pathogen), bottom line, keeps us safe (this would be part of the primal aspect). Too much fear, you're frozen stuck in the bottom line. Too little fear? Riskily untethered in chronic mania. In truth, how can we use this experience to move ourselves toward our desired destination, aka Easy Street?
Well, in my mind there's a couple options to pull from. One is to simply allows stuckness to play itself out until a meaningful signpost shows the way. Think of this as a temporary fog moving in; pretty soon it will clear. Although, playing the waiting game as your primary traveling tactic runs the risk of allowing passivity to reign over all. You become someone who things happen upon rather than someone who makes things happen. And isn't that pretty much the reason we started this discussion in the first place? In the long-play waiting-game scenario, imagine you're without a vehicle, stuck at the side of the road, at the mercy of whatever drops your way from passing traffic. Pretty powerless.
O-kay, so take some action. Yikes, easy to say, scary to do! Often stuckness is engendered, aided and abetted by Fear. Fear of making the wrong choice, taking the wrong action, the wrong what-have-you. Lately it seems to me it may not really matter which particular choice is made and specific action taken, especially when the real problem is inaction itself (obvious bone-head moves excepted, of course). Our lives are a steady stream of choices and actions, influences and responses, flowing from one to the next. We can only ever move ahead from where we are with what we've got.
Take note, here's a Caution Sign: as implied above, I'm not in any way advocating foolhardy action for action's sake nor base reaction rooted in blind passion. I like to believe we all try our best in any given moment. As you know, what constitutes “moments” can vary significantly from moment to moment. In other words, what constitutes our Best invariably varies through time and circumstances. After all, we are here in human guise, for better or worse.
Do your best, cut yourself a break and keep plugging away. Even though badly burned and ambushed by extreme plot twists in the past that led into fearfulness and craving reliable outcomes, remember one of Life's Great and Hard Challenges is to find a way to hold close to Faith and Trust (especially in the face of No Guarantees) that things work out in the desired direction. Why not? It's said you are what you eat, you are what you think. Why not head in the direction of your heart's desire?
“Easy to say, hard to do!” I hear you! Let's look to the Chinese Five Element story to help strengthen your game and understand how to work toward engendering your ideas of desired change.
We'll start at Wood, all about initiating and maintaining free flow of energy (think plants growing up through concrete). It's the element most sensitive to stuckness with the least amount of graciousness. In fact, disgruntled Wood can be downright ornery or completely shut down. But as you see in the picture here the elements are not in isolation, they are supported and guided by all the others (just like all of us). Notice Water is the parent of Wood and as such brings a foundation and connection to the primal life force allowing it to grow, just as a parent does. Life on our planet earth moves through generations via Water. Water's got Wood's back so Wood has strength and confidence to move freely. Fire, child of Wood, is the passionate spark of life, blossomed in counterbalance to its rooting in Water. Think life's full blooming expression in high summer. The Life Force moves out of Water, up through Wood to express itself in Fire. And that's only part of the story!
Earth element is associated with harvest time, a peaceful time of plenty when the living's easy. Earth is home base established from Fire, fortress for our personal strength and retreat for safety. With strength and safety on our side, we're more likely to take a chance to reach out and over Fear toward our desires. Metal is the capacity for discrimination, the wisdom to discern that which serves us and the ability to let go of that useless and weighty excess baggage. What's your value? Where's your value? What's in the way and is ready to be jettisoned?
Where are you strong in this story of the Five Elements, which areas need attention? We receive, process and enact information and ideas through all our senses. Can you effectively hear (Water) others' cautionary tales of speed bumps and traffic snarls? How far ahead down the road are you able to see (Wood)? Where are your touchstones (Earth) for stability? Do you know when you smell a rat (Metal) or when you are in full flower (Fire)?
One final small Caution Sign: be aware of busy work actions masquerading as Progress. Are you really moving ahead or simply circling around a rotary? Trust in yourself – you've gotten this far! Are my two cents the be-all and end-all? I don't think so! But if your perspective gets shifted a bit, you may find some action. Trust in yourself - you've gotten this far!
Images of Tarot cards from the popular and ubiquitous Waite-Rider deck. Deck imagery composed by EA Waite and painted by Pamela Coleman Smith (published by Rider Company in 1910).
Here's one place to find out more: https://www.tarot.com/tarot/decks/rider
For my way of thinking, the Five Element scheme is one way to organize and tell the story of the manifest world and our existence. Many refer to it as a system of correspondences. A couple places to find out more:
A very simple description:
An expanded chart of Five Element correspondences:
http://www.tcmstudent.com/theory/Five Element Theory.html
On a final note, how ironic is it to finally post here about being stuck with the previous entry a year ago?
Bet you can use as much protection and cleansing as you can get these days. Times are wild and I think it's best to keep the transformational component in mind: it's not always going to be like this (just as Yin and Yang each evolve into the other). In fact, there's all sorts of opportunity to choose, move toward and enact our collective future.
What looks good to you?
Keep these techniques handy in your energetic toolkit.
Two Cleansing and Protection Techniques
1. Glowing Cocoon
Inhaling all ambient heavenly energies and influences, bring them deep into the central core of your being, feeling them glow and shine like the sun. Fill yourself completely with these vital energies.
Let you exhale return, moving directly out from this deep core in all directions (front, back, top, bottom, side-to-side), out through your whole being and energy field, like the sun's rays. Sweep away that which is no longer needed and that which instinctively you know is not yours. Breath moves through you like the first day windows are opened in Spring, refreshing and cleansing. With each breath cycle, cleanse all nooks and crannies, filling the newly-opened spaces with these vital energies.
Using the same basic technique as Cleansing breathing meditation, inhale Golden Light (some people use brilliant White Light) as the ambient heavenly energy, letting it fill your internal environment in all directions.
With each exhale, let the Light steam into your aura, into your personal electromagnetic bio-field, filling that space in the same way, like an embracing cocoon. Continue filling inside and outside with this Light until you are filled up and impermeable!
This next one may be used in a couple different ways.
The basic idea is imagining an umbrella or canopy over your head. It can travel with you!
Imagine your overhead canopy functions in the way we commony use an umbrella, as protection from outside influences. You are underneath, in a protected and clear space, free from any adverse influences.
Imagine the canopy/umbrella is raining down, like a shower, into and through the space underneath. This shower washes the space with cleansing energies, rinsing away whatever's no longer needed or is not yours. The shower may also rinse protective energies into this same space, like you are wrapped in a protecive coat.
What happens to all the “stuff” that's swept and washed away?
There's one more aspect to getting clean and protected. You can imagine whatever is discharged and drained off is sent back to Source to be remade. Think recycling rather than littering! Send this “stuff” back to Source through the elements; they will take care of the transformation. Remember, Source is within all the elements (as it is within all of us).
When you have finished with whichever method you've chosen, relax your attention and take a few easy breaths as you gradually return to the here and now. Transition gently and know this cleansing and protective exercise stays with you.
A dear friend and colleague remarked recently we all have a ready-made and built-in Staff of Power. This simple reminder of a ready-made and built-in Power Staff really lit my circuits. She spoke particularly of the spinal column but really it’s greater than a physical structure. In fact, for me, the physical structure is evidence of the underlying energetic schematic. Long recognized by ancient cultures, Hindus spoke of this central channel as the Shushumna; Chinese termed it the Chong Mai (in acupuncture known as the Penetrating Vessel of the Eight Extraordinary Vessels - more about them another time). By any name, it's that energetic fundamental core we all have. Not really new news but somehow something more clicked into place for me in that moment.
Human history is full of Staffs of Power, found in all sorts of forms and for all sorts of purposes. Some examples, in no particular order and certainly not an exhaustive list:
Our energetic blueprint is the master plan of what form we can take as we come into being. In other words, think of DNA as the possibilities of who and what you can be. Embryology shows us that by 3 weeks the neural tube has formed. We are literally organized and built around a Power Staff. Physical structures grow up into its image: spinal cord & vertebrae, major blood vessels (aorta and vena cava) and digestive system (albeit, a less-than direct path).
So what about all of this clicked into place for me? Paying attention to aligning my physical structure with this “interior” Power Staff, I noticed a clear sensation of energetic focus along this pathway. Perhaps you’ve felt your own Staff with a sensation of energy moving up or down, tracing this deep pathway. I noticed physically aligning with this ineffable core my connection with acupuncture and reiki practices deepened in potency, connection with vocal expression eased and strengthened, and I felt lifted up, lightened and expanded into my own Self. Even something so mundane as strength training at the gym was more potent. No matter what movement, which muscle group, with overall alignment in place, my whole being, body and spirit, benefited.
DIY alignment and tune-up? Simply with a little straightening up and paying attention, what could be more simple? And simplicity is the other aspect that clicked in for me. I find great and fundamental truths are simply simple.
Simple sounds great, yes? Tell me, what about these days actually is simple? And how do I access my Power Staff? Good news! It’s always there, it’s always been there for you. If you’re new to all of this, consider a “faking it ‘til you make it” tactic. Use your intention and attention together to imagine the place in your internal environment where your Power Staff would be. Try finding the front aspect of your backbone. Yes, an uncommon way to think about your spine as we usually focus on the back side. Not to worry, if there’s a back to something, a front is guaranteed. Play around, explore, notice what you notice.
As you begin to reconnect more with the internal sensation of your Power Staff, start to feel clearer connection with this dynamic flow. Notice how it can extend outside your body, continuing on the same trajectory, top and bottom, coupling you with Above and Below. Again, the ancients recognized this as the realm of the human being: connected to, supported by and nourished from Heaven and Earth (Above and Below). In Chinese thought, it is the interactions of primordial Heaven and Earth (Yang and Yin) that engenders life. Simple.
Aligned from the inside, tuned up and linked, your personal vibe sings and shines! You are, after all, directly plugged into Above and Below. Yeah, but we're in the roiling big stew of greater energies and influences and we may lose sight of these things from time to time. Use this simple little thought meditation to find yourself, your inherent Power and your place when things get a little rocky and swirly. Our Staff of Power's form is tubular, ready to receive from either end and when it's optimal, we receive and integrate optimal information. Our Power Staff resonates realms internal and external. As it flourishes, we flourish. Simply a matter of straightening up and paying attention. Simple; we've got this.
In the sincere interest and consideration of tender hearts and possible misunderstandings, I recognize the above .gif may not be Everyone's cup of tea. No disrespect or insult is intended; please accept my apology if necessary.
A few more Power Staff images in a slideshow:
An important station point in the year for me is the moment it’s clear Spring will not be held back. A tipping point, subtle to be sure, a tipping point nevertheless. Like transiting the apex of some hills, you may easily miss the watershed moment if your attention is elsewhere. Even though Gaia runs by other than anthropocentric rhythms, many of our various cultures have standardized these stations on the wheel of the year to help us mark time. Lunar New Year in Asian traditions is also known as Spring Festival; we’ve just entered the year of the Earth Dog. Perhaps you’ve noticed a difference in how the daylight appears (certainly when it appears), new birdsongs, a hint of scent in the air or other changes evocative of Spring and the awakening of life from hibernation. The heart lifts, doesn’t it?
Happy New Year! “Detox” is the sound bite: cleanse from wintertime’s sedentary nap and begin to refresh inside and out. Now is the time to set health in spring, New Year’s resolution and spring cleaning all wrapped up together! Create Heath through rehab: re-habit your life for good Spring planning and planting. I know you can, you do have the technology!
In the Chinese Five Element system, Spring is when Qi rises up from its hibernation deep in the ground, overwintering in a protected and restorative place. Little green shoots appear, days are longer and warmer, the impulse is to be out & moving freely. As winter wanes spring grows, both interweave along this process. It’s not always a smooth ride, is it?
Begin to be a bit more active outside, keeping cozy clothing at hand to ward off sudden chill. If you had the flu this season, take extra care, especially keeping head, neck, upper back and shoulders protected. Protect your growing strength. Enjoy the spring sky and sunlight (all the more appreciated on cloudy days), powerful therapeutics this time of year! Step by step you’ll arrive; enjoy the process of your journey. There’s a lot you can do for yourself (hints and suggestions below)! The really good news is we don’t have to do it all by ourselves. In fact, it’s reasonably essential to have help along the way, a second opinion if you will. Acupuncture and related modalities serve to regulate and balance your internal energetic environment.
Decluttering = detoxing Declutter your environment (outside), declutter your body (inside)! Pretty simple. A basic technique in Feng Shui is getting rid of excess and in-the-way stuff - it’s all speedbumps to free flow of Qi. Remember, Spring Qi is about rising up with new life. Do you really want to obstruct this process? Interested in more about Feng Shui? Get in touch with Cid Tamagno, she’ll take care of you in style (link) .
How about “inside” decluttering? In winter we eat heartier foods like stews and baked casseroles that bank our energetic furnace. Start to lighten up your food choices as spring seeps in; you’ll be able to move more freely. Include some more fresh fruit (see baked sour apple recipe below) and vegetables, especially green veg. Don’t dive into a predominantly raw approach, though, that’s better tolerated in the heat of summer. Another tip for easing into Spring by helping your digestive system has to do with simple food combining. Try animal-based protein with non-starchy vegetables and without carbs in your meal. Plant-based protein is ok with carbs and starchy or non-starchy veg.
Rehab your habits with some of these suggestions to get back to yourself, your true self. I can help and am ready to be part of your personal good health posse. One more internal decluttering tip: check out my 5 minute “Center Your Heart” guided meditation for a simple reset you can do anywhere you have a few minutes.
Recipes and Cooking Hints for Spring
Lighter soups, steamed and sauteed vegs, spring foods are more lightly and quickly cooked. Have a salad with warm soup or broiled chicken. Lemon water, so good for you first thing in the morning (you can substitute apple cider vinegar for the lemon, extra cleansing!). A cooked breakfast still the way to go, until winter is long gone. An easy crockpot vegetable soup, adapt as you desire: crushed tomatoes, shredded green cabbage and other vegetables and seasonings as the mood strikes. Here’s a little secret: I use frozen mixed veg for a variety and extra convenience. Finish with some sprouts and a drizzle of oil (olive, flax, coconut - whatever works for you!) for a clean meal.
Helpful herbs and seasonings include basil, fennel, marjoram, rosemary, onion, tumeric, ginger, cardamom, cumin, horseradish, mint. Grains good for spring are oats, quinoa, millet and wheat. I know wheat’s had tough times recently. If you do eat it, please get the best quality you can. Choose beets, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, celery, cucumber, asparagus and radish (including daikon) for some spring vegetables.
I’m finding a baked Granny Smith apple to be intensely satisfying lately. Core the apple (skin on is my preference) and set in a ramekin or small dish to hold. Where the core was I layer in a pitted date, some walnuts, powdered cardamom and clove, a little coconut oil and another date to top off. Bake for about 45-60 minutes ‘til cooked through. it’s a fairly forgiving and adaptable recipe; play around with the fillings. How about fig, 5-spice powder and some grapefruit or orange zest (organic here, please)?
It started out as a silent sound in my sensibility: “tensile silence” was what I heard. What in the heck could that mean?!?
Letting the echo play out for a while to buy time, I was waiting for some meaning to filter down to my understanding. I thought of course if there is tensile silence there would be tensile sound. N.B. silence/sound: Yin and Yang in action! But what’s the tensile about? Tensile strength is how susceptible or resistant to stretching forces on a material. More resistance is greater tensile strength. In other words, able to stretch more and longer before breaking. Often discussed concerning properties of various metals but applicable to other materials and situations as well, including the human experience.
Speaking of playing, you must admit “tensile” has a sonic presence. Fun to say and hear “tensile silence.” “Tensile sound,” significantly less auditorily vivacious. Very soon thereafter “tensile resonance” showed up with its own sonic attitude and understanding blossomed.
So here’s where I ended up with this bit of passing ephemera heard out of the corner of my mind’s ear. Silence and Sound stand in yin-yang relation, polar opposites united in the condition of vibration we experience as sound or resonance. Tensile, as a capacity, is a type of durability, able to withstand stresses and strains without significant (or, goodness forbid, fatal!) injury.
Humming along at one’s unique fundamental signature frequency means all our parts are running well; it’s a state of vibrant health! Chinese Medicine historically recognizes internal and external roots to imbalance, leading to unhealthy states. Let’s face it, we live in a rich stew of stimulation for all our senses these days. I think in order to make it through, day to day, we tune out the vast majority of what comes to us through sound, sight, scent, touch. Perhaps even a good portion of what we say! That doesn’t mean we’re not being affected. How much of what comes your way harmonizes with you? How much of what comes up in your internal realm is harmonic?
Here’s where many of what are commonly called complimentary and alternative modalities come in. They aim to return you to your best self, to your own best resonance, to tonify (“tone up”) your Tensile Resonance capacity. My work is about helping You get back to Yourself, using a variety of tools and modalities, including sounds. One of the aspects I like about using sound is the dual nature of its effect. While your whole being is bathed in sonic restorative resonances and simultaneously your ears receive the same impulses and transmit that energy directly to your brain. Harmonics wash over and through, inside and out!
Can you hear your Tensile Resonance now?