Debbie Yu, MS, L.Ac


earth yin yang handPhysically, the digestive system is at the center of our body and in Chinese medicine, it is often referred to as the “middle burner.” It composes of the Spleen and the Stomach, both of which relate to the earth element.

With good digestion, we are able to extract and absorb nutrients well, and therefore nourish the billions of cells comprising the body to, in turn, promote quality physiology. If we cannot absorb the food we eat, then isn’t it just going to waste?

There are five elements that form the universe – wood, fire, metal, and water. While wood and fire expand up and outwards, and metal and water descend and contract inwards, earth is the centering force.

This centering force gives us a sense of home. (…ahhh “mother earth” )

Its no wonder, when we travel, our digestion tends to upset. Time change, new environment, and new foods all contribute as well. Those who are constantly traveling may be prone to such issues; perhaps it is partly due to lacking a full sense of home.

Regardless of what country we are in, this earth element also centers us within ourselves.  It provides us with a core sense of knowing and well-being. As we become more developed in our own center and more comfortable in our own skin, we are able to expand more fully into the outer world. We create stronger bonds and relationships with others. We become part of something larger than ourselves – whether that is of the local community, the planet, or something far larger.

So take a moment to observe yourself and see where you are at…because “only when you truly inhabit your body can you begin the healing journey.” Gabrielle Roth