Nourishing Your Fire Within, Five Element Fire at its Peak, Reminder on Scheduling, Everyone is Connected!
JUNE 2020
We are continuing to work on our reopening plans, acquiring supplies and developing the new protocols that we will put into place, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We aim to reopen during Phase Two of the state's reopening plan, and look forward to seeing you all before too long! Stay tuned for more email updates as we get closer to a reopening date. ~ Rachel & Anne Louise
Nourishing Your Fire Within

Rachel Condon, Lic. Ac.

For the last several weeks, Anne Louise and I have been having weekly zoom staff meetings, during which we have spent much of the time strategizing plans for reopening, looking forward to the time when we can safely see you again and get back to doing acupuncture!
For a fresh change of focus, we decided to delve back into the territory of Chinese Medicine, and focus on one of our favorite themes, the element associated with a particular season, which, in this case, is the Fire element .
As a quick review, or if this is a new way of thinking about the body for you – Thousands of years ago, Chinese physicians noted that our bodies can be thought of as microcosms of the natural world , and that we are made up of dynamic networks of energy, constantly in flux and going in and out of balance, in response to the environment. Each of the five elemental energies (fire, earth, water, metal, wood) represents a different way that the body functions, on a physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual level.
We’ve written several articles on the Fire element in previous newsletters, which you can check out if you are interested, by clicking here . The Fire element, most active during the summer season, is associated with a lot of Yang activity - think being outdoors a lot, travel/vacations, getting together with friends and family, cookouts, picnics, and barbecues. And now, amidst this global pandemic of COVID-19, our lives have been turned upside down. Even as we slowly emerge from quarantines and lockdowns over the last several weeks, we are still being advised to “socially distance,” wear masks in public spaces, avoid crowds, and in general, proceed with caution. This is tough on the Fire element!
When the Fire element doesn’t get to express itself, it can result in emotions like fear – which we also do not need more of during this time! And so, how can we nourish the Fire element in ourselves, during this unusual time?
Instead of focusing on the things you aren’t allowed to do right now and the ways you’re feeling restricted or deprived of certain typical summertime activities, why not try and take a different perspective…
This could be a great time to ~
Try a new outdoor activity , like star-gazing, foraging, hiking new trails (the sky is the limit here, literally!), OR return to an old love that you didn’t think you had time for anymore – like a leisurely bike ride or an evening stroll!
Use the creative energies of the fire element to connect with others differently - take the time for those longer conversations with old friends or family you may not be able to see right now in person, discover some new recipes to test out in the kitchen, use what’s actually IN your pantry, that you usually forget about! Read a book , like a real one, paperback or hardcover, there’s truly nothing like it.
As I was writing this at my computer, I heard noises outside, and looked out my window to see the local DPW truck at the nearest fire hydrant. It was opened up to flush the hydrant, and water spouted out in a glorious rush. I went outside to watch, and five neighborhood boys came squealing into view, completely soaked and running directly at the water, pure joy !! Now THAT is another great way to nourish your fire within. Maybe next time I’ll join them in the water!
Five Element Fire at its peak on June 20 during the Summer Solstice

Anne-Louise Smallen, Lic. Acu.
One of my favorite times of the year will be on Saturday, June 20th when the four Fire meridians (Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium and Triple Heater) will be at their peak, and their energy will fill the planet. The four fire meridians are centered around the functioning and protecting of the heart. In Western medicine, the heart is primarily considered a mighty pump; but in the Chinese tradition, the heart is the mighty master/mistress of life . We are made of all kinds of things: emotions and ideas, unrelenting urges and capacity for discipline, creative impulses, genetic limitations, past traumas or successes, support or isolation from our community, and we are given the mandate to live our lives as best we can . To live our lives healthily we need to be able to direct these aspects of our personality into helping us rather than letting one of them take over at the expense of everything else.  The heart helps us put all the ingredients of life in perspective, create our personality and craft a life for ourselves . It reminds us that we can be ocean liners rather than corks, thrown aimlessly about the ocean of life. The heart constantly brings us back together to our core and forward into manifestation.
The heart meridian relies heavily on three other meridians to do its job:  the small intestine grants us the capacity to judge situations as they come (think of the small intestine as being a filter of sorts, that looks at everything and puts it in its right place: "yep could use that here, nope can’t use that at the moment so let’s store it"), the pericardium, which protects the heart from attacks and traumas, and the triple heater , which helps the diffusion to and from the heart of our blood and qi (and their energy and gifts) throughout our body and life.
So even if the clinic might not offer the Summer Five Element treatment this year because of the pandemic lockdown, open yourself to the power of the heart . Take a moment to slow down, breathe deeply and think about your own energy and beauty. Recognize their importance in your life.  Give it a thank you, a little moment of peace and appreciation to how you are connected to all that is inside and outside of you . Let this feeling flourish and guide the rest of you for a while. Peace!
We will send out an email when the new schedule is up and running, reflecting available spots.
Please do not schedule any appointments until you receive that email , as we will need to cancel them until we have the new settings in place in the online system.
Thanks so much for your patience!
black lives matter
As a community healthcare practice that seeks to make holistic healing services accessible to ALL, we want to join others in raising our voices, to protect our brothers and sisters who are being murdered in our streets; it has to stop NOW ~ And I don't pretend to know how to do this... I am learning about my white privilege every day. But I am paying attention, and I am listening. And I offer this as my own prayer during these times, that we may all listen to one another, and feel how we are connected, and speak and take action, when we can. There are a thousand ways to kneel and kiss the ground. ~ Rachel

When we say, Everything is Connected, meaning internally, that the health of one part affects the health of the whole ~ we also mean, EVERYONE is CONNECTED ~

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

- Letter From Birmingham Jail" April 16, 1963 MLK, Jr

Northampton Community Acupuncture 413-586-8251