Updated: Mar 22, 2021
The Colour Red, the Bitter Flavour & the Heart - A Basic Guide to Nature's Summer Principles
The dynamic and purposeful energy of the Wood element begins to mellow as we come into the Fire element. Energetically, the coming of Summer brings a continuation of upward energy but transforms into an expansive and warming energy. Fire's earthly forms graces us with flames, heat, volcanoes and the sun. Fire is the only element to be created by humans which symbolises the divine creative energy within all of us. It is considered as a masculine energy - one of passion, transformation and creativity.
Just like in nature the purposeful energy that pulls up the seedling now moves outwards - the leaves grow and flowers open. The warm, heating energy transforms flowers into fruits. Insects buzz and pollinate, it is a social time! We provide gifts and the fruits of our labour which are supplied through the light and heat energy of the sun.
The Physical Body
The organ associated with fire is the heart. Constructing a fire takes planning (the Wood element) and the heart also needs a constant source of energy to keep it alight. We eat stored light energy in the form of plants (or those animals that eat the plants) to keep our internal fire constant.
The pericardium (heart covering),the small intestine are known as the 'triple burner', all come under the fire element. The higher heart acts to protect us from emotional pain and negative emotions. We literally can suffer from a broken heart and stress is one of the biggest killers. The small intestine absorbs the nutrients we eat, like the volcano replenishing the land, nutrients replenish the body - all very fire like qualities. The small intestine sorts the pure from the impure and this is sometimes reflected in our emotions; people with digestive disorders are often unable to decide on theirpriorities.
Fire imbalances are associated with heart disease, digestive issues. Symptoms include headaches, skin inflammation, sleep disturbances, agitated, explosive energy, anxious or inappropriate behaviour. Interesting, all associated with dehydration - think of that wilting flower under the pressure of the Summer sun.
If the heart system is out of balance due to an emotional trauma, death of a child or loved one, sadness they can run out of fire, leading to depression. Fire can also become over excited and active which help us to avoid our problems; if anger from the wood element has not been resolved the fire can become out of control. If we live through our ego and do not live though our hearts and have to live under lots of stress this can imbalance our fire. In many of my patients suffering from heart issues, anxiety and IBS they have a case history of emotional trauma. The heart protector serves us well as why we should protect it by bringing in joy and letting go of negative emotion.
Did you build your wood to sustain your fire? Fire can burn strongly and create huge pain if we are not willing to accept change. In these case we must realise fire creates transformation. We have to put those energies to good use. Fire produces ash which riches the soils creating fertile lands; if we disregard the ash of the fire we fail to learn lesson of fire. Sometimes our lessons of the greatest pain provide our greatest growth.
In the Western world the triple burner is perhaps best explained (to me anyway) as the mind, body and spirit connection - our cauldron cooking over the fire. This is very interesting as we associate all consuming fire with our spirit. The lesson of fire is to live in joy, take action from the heart and heal with self love. When we focus on our inner connection our divine plan comes together easily; the experiences you chose to put in your pot is up to you.
Heavenly energy descends while earth energy rises. Fire is wood's child, flowers, and fruit appear in abundance. The male energy of Summer brings desire and seeks to consume. We are social butterflies pollinating ideas and searching for love and acceptance.
Fire brings transformation and the conception of new ideas making Summer a great time for building business and networking. Fire governs our mannerisms and if behaving appropriately will be gracious creating opportunity. The energy fills us with a capacity for joy and enthusiasm, sunshine brings faith that we can achieve our goals and bring them into fruition.
Fire types show qualities inherent to summer, so they appear outgoing, warm, lively and sociable. Balanced types trust and can form steady relationships; we have enthusiasm to fulfil our goals with a feist for life!
How to bring more Fire into your Life
The invention of fire made us into social animals; a time of wonderful communication. Why not enjoy Summer Solstice around a fire and celebrate all your achievements; capture the last night before the fire energy fades until the next year of full transformation. Make time for that festival or camping trip you always fancied - it can bring joy and connection to the earth.
Hang lights in the trees to bring fire magic alive at night - perfect for a garden party! Light up the south of your home with lights, candles (safely) or a fire as it corresponds to love, friendships and relationships. The colour red also represents fire as well as peach or pink should you wish to bring a little extra fire and abundance.
Wearing the colour red can increase fire in your life! Red holds the fastest energy making it a great colour to get yourself noticed or feel more upbeat. Orange vibrations resonate with creativity while yellow brings happiness.
Ask yourself - what would you be doing and what life would you be leading if you were following your heart? Do one thing this Summer to make that happen. If you don't try you want know what awaits you....
To get to know and understand the fire element we can start with simple candle meditations. Meditating on the flames can help you to connect to your fire bringing ideas and creativity to the surface. Connect to the heart of the universe by simply staring into the flame and freeing your thoughts.
Do something with your community to build a sense of fire, drop in on a neighbour for a cup of tea in the garden. Get away to watch a sunset for the evening. Be a social butterfly or do something kind for someone.
Walk in the grass barefooted, science has shown this has benefits to both our physical, emotional and mental bodies and helps to develop our spiritual connection. Listen intently to the sounds of nature, smell the scents of Summer and allow them to consume you. Eat a blackberry and think about the energy that was needed to produce such a humble fruit. We are part of a bigger universe and nature is amazing.
Why not go for a little forage and preserve nature's gifts. It is a super time for collecting rose petals to make Rose syrup. Lavender flowers are great for a relaxing bath. Nettles make for a good
nettle-ade. Elderberries make great wine! Or grow your own vegetables or herbs. Why not get creative with nature?
Eat the Element - Summer - Bitter Flavour
Flowers turn into fruit and the vegetables grow; fire fuels growth. Many of us like to bake or preserve nature's gifts and transforming foods, all under the power of fire. Fire energy manifests in food as the bitter flavour. Fire is controlled by Water and bitter flavours are cooling, helping to control excess heat and draining dampness in the body.
When fire is low we like to eat warming hearty soups to keep our fire. In Summer we tend to avoid excessive fire foods such as eggs and meat and naturally opt for the cooling, watery bitter foods such as salad, watercress, melon, lettuce, celery. The bitter flavour cleanses the bladder and penetrates the heart and small intestine. Garlic, cloves, thyme, rosemary and coriander are all super herbs to use in cooking to help harness that fire energy. Fruits are hydrating and represent the fire element, with their pit at the heart of growth. Eat the seasons summer vegetables and fruits that fire provides.
Summer Element Recipe - Dandelion & Cherry Salad & Raspberry Vinegar
Make yourself a little side salad with a vinegar dressing. Choose some small young tender dandelion leaves and steam them lightly and then simply add a handful of chopped cherries or cranberries to your salad. To make the dressing simply mix some olive oil and raspberry vinegar together with a little salt to taste!
The Lesson of Fire
The heart rules understanding. Live with emotional intelligence rather than making ego driven decisions. We know in our heart when something is right. Listen to your inner voice, live freely and enjoy the gifts the universe is waiting to provide. Take opportunity and be open to your connected Summer self. Have a lovely active Summer everyone!