In Oriental Medicine there are 5 Elements: WOOD, FIRE, EARTH, METAL, WATER. They correspond to the 5 Seasons: SPRING, SUMMER, LATE SUMMER, AUTUMN, WINTER. In the Spring, the WOOD element is dominant. The symbol in nature for the WOOD element is a tree or bamboo. A healthy tree, like a healthy person, is well rooted, is flexible and is upright. The two organ functions of the WOOD element are the LIVER and GALLBLADDER. They hold the energy that we see so abundantly in the Spring. Hormones are rising in the animal kingdom; new life is blooming in the plant kingdom. Health is found where there is balance in all things. The directional correspondence to the WOOD element is the EAST. This makes sense. The sun rises in the east to start a new day, and the WOOD element is about rising upward and new beginnings. There is a virtue for each element. The virtue for the WOOD element is Benevolence. Human Beings are the vehicle through which Heaven is made manifest on Earth, and Benevolent service is the virtue of Human Beings which “ empowers the unconstrained evolutionary journey of all things” on their progressive upward spiral.
The energy of Spring is filling every living thing. In nature, it is the time when the potential stored in the seeds of possibility in Winter begin to move and rise upward in creative manifestation. As a crocus pushes through the frozen ground toward the sun in a forceful upward direction, it creates a flower from a seed. That creative force is what gives us a sense of purpose and direction in our lives. In Lonny Jarrett’s book Nourishing Destiny, he says, “the WOOD element ensures that life never proceeds in a circle but always in an upward evolutionary spiral. Hence the rhythm of WOOD is a continuous streaming that never falters, joining each moment to the next in the endless progression of all things toward heaven.”