Welcome to the New Lunar Year, 2020. It's the Year of the Yang Metal Rat. In a series of short posts this week, I'd like to restart and rejuvenate my own creativity.
What has shown to be personally valuable for me comes through writing and sharing. I hope you will return for each upcoming post as I find the discipline to plunge ever more deeply into what I have been taught, what I have practiced, and what I have personally experienced as true and valuable in years of training.
My wish is that you will be inspired to:
plunge your own depths - allow what is more hidden to emerge
question what blocks you to improve and change
develop more trust in your own inner wisdom
create your new creative and fluid structure
New Cycle...New Possibilities:
The potential is here for more health, fulfillment and meaning.
It's the beginning of a whole new era.
In the learned ancient traditions, all learning and development (spiritual, intellectual, medical, scientific, philosophical) came from not only observing - but from directly experimenting - what is observed.
Personal inner cultivation flowed into the community and society from deliberate and determined individual self-awareness. From clarity and wisdom there was space for more compassion.
In modern times, this is not as recognized or seen as valuable, even though we are all wondering what to do - as the world and the people in it are living in more fear and depression then ever!
We barely find or feel that there's much meaning anymore. Our individual and collective experiences have started to feel deceptive, worthless and even downright destructive.
We are shadowed with addiction, violence and at times are almost paralyzed with fear and anxiety, and a sense of isolation and separation.
The things we have believed or have been taught to respect or believe, have begun to let us down - deeply. It is difficult to trust that our creativity has a place anymore, or that we can really change and transform all the resources that so many of us enjoy.
The struggle now seems to be to only endure or survive the madness.
But. Now IS the time to harness our true potential and transform it.
In the transition into a new era we CAN actually learn to use old ways, the old structures, we have been clinging to. We can't transform them unless we want to transform ourselves: - to seek what is deeper, deeper, inside ourselves. We must be inspired to find and trust our faith in our innate wisdom and in our natural compassion.
First, as I myself have been learning for so long - this starts INSIDE. With an inquiry, a playful curiosity. And - some creative discipline.
The only way to truly have something meaningful to offer to others is to know what is valuable to us. To trust it. To honor it. Then, we have something authentic to share.
Systems and paradigms are just tools. But, what tools do we already rely upon? I myself decided to use my professional and personal life to explore particular systems, to see through experimenting which tools actually work.
Through internal inquiry and staying more playfully curious, I can trust any outcomes and results they produce and provide me.
Then, it becomes easy and natural to use their support.
I stop struggling. I start creating.
The System of the Energy Cycles in Chinese Medicine
One appealing and fun systems to explore is the Chinese lunar and zodiac cycle. It is comprised of 12-years - each with its own associated animal energy. [Some of you have seen me use the label of "Metal Dog". This honors the year I was born and its elemental influence: 1970]
If you're curious about your own Birth Year, and would like to compare and integrate integrate your western birth sign, I like this website. It lets you do a "birthday analysis" (just use the menu to plug in your birthdate).
In this series, I will use the 2020 New Year's theme of the Yang Metal and Yang Water elements, as these are the two strong phases now emerging.
Together, Yang (active and outward) Metal and Water act as the dynamic of directed and stable flow into creative and supportive change.
I will be tagging the animal theme of the Rat and how it serves to influence us right now as well.
All this, for giving attention to our own:
Health: Physical, Mental and Emotional
Home: The Energy of our Surroundings
Relationships: Solitude & Social Connection
The Qualities of METAL:
Discerning Engineering Framing
Sharpening our ability to Determine and Discern what is:
Trustworthy and Valuable
Worthwhile and Meaningful
Valuable and what our personal Values are
Inspiring to us and...What is No Longer Needed
The Qualities of WATER:
Fluidity, Wisdom, Stillness
Diving under the surface to:
Find and experience our Will and Power
Recognize what we Fear and what Blocks us
Trust our Strong Intuition
Give in to our Natural Flow & Changeability
The Energy of the RAT:
Rat Birth Years are: 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020
The Rat has many wonderful qualities, contrary to common associations. The more positive personality traits of the Rat are its Clever and Crafty nature, its Vitality, Wit, and Spirit. They may be unseen most of the time, staying hidden. But when they appear, you can know its time for quick, sharp and playful activity. Rats can build a nest or a home (structure) out of anything! They can move quickly when necessary, or freeze and play dead when threatened. One downside of Rat energy is that when afraid or traumatized, it becomes paralyzed or victimized.
Stabilizing our Changes
What we can start to consider is our inner personal attitude.
How are we emotionally or mentally positioned to respond to change?
How does it live inside us and how does it cause us to act?
We build or structure our words and actions from our beliefs and attitudes.
We act from what we think.
Then, we create and decorate our home and family life, our community, and our world from them.
But this can inspire us towards wanting more discovery. This is the birth, the beginning of our curiosity...
How can I thrive? How can I move forward with inspiration?
Don't we need this? Especially since many of us can feel so sharply, the effects of our own and others' negativity. We can get quite despondent about where, or if, we fit or belong anywhere. Or how we can keep going. Whether there's anyone or anything we can truly trust.
What I keep finding the most helpful - and, for a Metal Dog this is key - most efficient is to be interested and willing.
Curious and willing to plunge into, to tap down into, my own experiences.
To wonder and then be willing to stop, get still, shut off the outer noise and make room for questioning:
What do I need right now?
What has supported me in the past and do I still let myself continue to trust whatever that is?
What has proved to keep me stable through my own changes and transitions, difficulties and challenges? Do I rely on it consistently?
Warning: It does take some wanting and willingness. But the good news: it's easier than we think it is. You don't have to believe me, but Let It Be Easy.
Clarity comes from Keeping It Simple, as clique as it sounds.
And for you, there will be answers perhaps different than mine. This is wonderful to discover and to gain more clarity about too!
And, perhaps like me you have discovered that reflection or contemplation, prayer or meditation has been a trusted ally. If you have never tried to foster any of these methods, I am psyched if you get the taste of the beginner!
Whatever form of inner resources we have benefitted from or have yearned for, now is the time to remember or discover them. Then, allow yourself to and value them. This is an earned trust - that is real and deep non-self-deception.
So today, to begin this series, I will give you some things to ponder if you wish.
In seeing here this claim and clarion call for a time to
REFRESH, RESTART, for POSSIBILITY and NEW BEGINNINGS...
I invite you to sit quietly for a few moments.
Then do your own internal experiments.
Ask yourself some questions.
Then, LISTEN - don't force - for answers.
What is most valuable right now in my life?
What inspires me...gives me a mental lift or boost?
What needs some purging?
What would I most like to tend to first?
So, listen. Listen deeply and don't try to fix anything yet.
Only in this way can we come to trust what naturally is available - our own wisdom that comes from personal exploitation and experience.
This is our most valuable resource and guide.
Perhaps some general things come up in your mind. Maybe they will fit into the areas that I will write some more about in these next few weeks. I hope you will stay tuned in with me. More importantly, I hope you will join me in enjoying the new time now for beginning new chapters as we use our own wisdoms of experience.
Next post: Chinese Medicine Insights on Metal
- Lung & Large Intestine: the networks of Inspiration and Elimination
I am always inspired most from seeing your comments.
Please share my work with others if you find it helpful.
"We heal not in isolation but in community."