The element of AIR- (Excerpt from her new book, B.E Human) 04/03


Correspondences:

v  Moist and warm, active, mobile

v  Direction – East

v  Represents clear perception and intelligence.  Associated with the first breath of life, speech, communication and the Heart.

v  Chakra – Heart

Air is matter in the form of gas, which is incredibly dynamic and is able to move in between, to and from and around various pressures swiftly. Within the body, air is the basis for all energy transfer reactions. It is a key to ensure the existence of our own human life. Similarly, it is a key element to the other three elements for their existence. For example, without it, fire would not be able to burn.

 

Air is existence without form, and although it is not visible to us in its natural state, its role within the universe is that of grave importance, and without it, existence is not possible in any way or form. It can be felt, though. The wind is the motion of air and this is how we ‘feel’ the Air element – when it is physically in motion. The air (oxygen) that we know on planet Earth, has come into existence through our planet’s amazing biological systems. The process of photosynthesis, where plants take in carbon dioxide and water, creates oxygen as a by-product. This also embodies the very nature of the role of air in our daily existence.

 

It is in a constant give-take situation, forever recycling itself and reprogramming itself by flowing in and out, up and down, around and changing its stripes from oxygen to carbon dioxide, and back to oxygen again. Air does this to best serve the role it needs to play in a certain situation. For example, the role air plays is the exact opposite with fire as it is with plants. Plants take in the carbon dioxide and disperse air, and fire takes air in, in order to burn.

 

The Air element is linked to the Heart chakra, because it is the key to our gaseous exchange and our constant in and out, “Come closer… go away” relationship with the world and ourselves. This will become more and more apparent to you the further you go on to study this amazing element. Unpredictable, invisible, undependable, playful, destructive, soothing, inspiring, life taking and life giving: These qualities are what make up the Air element. To many, it symbolizes all that we cannot see, but we know to exist, such as, our souls or spirits, our minds, thoughts and, of course, our hearts.

 

In many belief systems, religions, philosophical teachings and spiritual practices, the individual would face East, because of the relation it has to Air and all its qualities of purity, change and intelligence. Purity of the spirit and the heart, clear perception and thought within the mind, focus of pure intent and ‘matters of the heart’ all fall under the traits which are governed by the unwavering element of Air. Just as our hearts and minds, Air is not always calm and collected – quite on the contrary.

 

Air is unpredictable and forever changing. In instances like these, it can easily be seen in a raging hurricane or tornado, but it could also be seen in a refreshing, soothing breeze. Ring any bells? It sounds to me like the perfect summary of our hearts and minds, don’t you think?  In all its complex simplicity, the element of Air is an element we should hold very dear, as it is a mirror reflection of our inner selves. As we now go on to see how to invite this element into your life, it becomes ever clear that the element of Air, is truly the breath of life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PHYSICAL APPEARENCE

 

Air can not be seen or drawn, but it can be touched and felt, much like emotions and energies. The only way Air is ‘visible’ to us, is in the way we see the wind blowing things around the sky and across the land. Air cannot be captured, and it is constantly moving. It cannot be tamed or changed by us, only by itself and by biological sysytems that have been in place for thousands of years. However, it serves our existence so incredibly loyally and graces us with its presence and all its qualities all day, every day.

 

What we can see is the ripples on the water when a breeze blows over a lake. We see the leaves swishing around everywhere, dancing in circles when its winds are carried through the tree. We see dirt and dust blowing across the roads. We feel it moving our clothes and playing around with our hair. Similarly, the wind can be calm and almost non existent, but Air is always there. This is apparent, as we breathe Air in and out, even if it does not move as Wind. Air surrounds us constantly, as a gravely important, invisible force in our lives.

To elaborate further and put this quality of Air in a nutshell, here is a wonderful quote from a Erpheronian philosopher, named Myrkorel Whitebeard, when speaking about the physical appearence of the Air element:

“Physical Air is mostly represented as Wind, or Air in motion. Wind cannot be seen, although it can be felt. Wind cannot be held, captured, or tamed. The invisible mover of things we can clearly see, the Wind influences the weather, the seasons, and therefore in a sense the essence of time itself. Wind can be destructive as easily as it can be soothing. Wind can as soon be a howling tornado as it can be a gentle breeze that plays among the flowers. Because we can see Wind in the things it moves, be it leaves or hair, we often associate the Element of Air with the Wind. Yet air also has the capability of being still. Still Air is the invisible provider of life to our lungs. It should be noted that motionless Air can be the provider of gentle breath to our lungs but it can also stifle just as easy. Air can be oppressive, hot, and stifling just as easily as it can be cool and calming. In this way, Air is influenced by Fire and Water for by Fire or Water can hair be heated or cooled.”

Remember too, that although we cannot physically term or ‘see’ the appearence of Air, it is hugely powerful and can be seen in and amongst the other elements. Air has the ability to, if given time, wear away the earth, in the form of a strong and constant wind – even to the tallest, oldest of mountains. Wind can effect fire and spread it out to become bigger, or whisp over it, so that it blows the fire out completely. This is the appearence of the element of Air to us.

 

Items that represent Air are many. Here is a list of some that I will be telling you all about later, in order to utilize them to invite this element into your life. They are as follows:

 

v  Feathers

v  Birds

v  Kites

v  Airplanes

v  Wind chimes

v  Dream catchers

v  Paper jet planes

v  Green crystals and stones

v  Dead leaves (Remember, only dead leaves and ones that are off of a tree already. Don’t go and deface a tree for your own benefit. These represent the blowing wind, of course.)

 

Colour correspondences linked to the element of Air and its energies are:

 

v  Yellow and purple (in conjunction with one another)

v  Grey

v  White

v  Yellow

v  Bright Emerald Green (Heart Chakra)

 

Now that the physical matter of the element of Air has been listed and is now fully acknowledged, we can go on to look at how this matter corresponds with our bodies mentally, emotionally and physically.

 

As Air is acknowledged by its many different movements. Being very dynamic and mobile, in its connection to the Heart Chakra, it embodies our entire relationship with the world, ourselves and other people. I say this so confidently because, no matter what we may believe to be true about any kind of relationship, a key constant factor is the contracting (pulling closer) and expanding (pushing away/making space) that is inevitably a part of each and every relationship. Actual Air, itself, is tirelessly moving between higher and lower pressures, seeking a balance – or equilibrium, if you will – where it is able to be still and flow freely. The same goes for our relationships, as we are most definitely always seeking a balance between giving and receiving, coming and going and what we allow in or outside of ourselves. In this sense, Air embodies the pursuit of balance and the process which needs to take place in order to acquire it.

 

Just as the conditions of the blowing wind effects the seas and oceans, whether it is a still breeze making the waters calm and still with tranquil, small waves, or whether it is in the form of a gale force wind, wrecking havoc among the waves and tides, Air is and always will be one of the most influential factors among all elements. And just as other elements effect us too, this effect isn’t limited to just oceans and seas, it effects the watery side of our bodies just as much. The ‘watery’ side I’m referring to here, are the high and low tides of our emotions and our ability to move and flow freely, as Water does.

If there is turbulence in the Heart Chakra, meaning Air that is frantically seeking balance, it will act as a gale force wind and disturb the ebb and flow of your emotions, not to mention how we feel emotionally towards ourselves, others and the world. Similarly, if a balance has been found within the body of the individual between giving, receiving, letting in and letting out, the ‘waters’ will be tranquil and the emotions will be calm.

 

That said, here is a SECRET: Just look at the outside world and its natural workings and… hey presto!… you can slowly compare the workings to what may be happening inside your own self and your own body.

 

Air, with its corresponding direction being East, is additionally then linked to the rising of Sun. The time of sunrise is the fresh, dewy beginning of a new day, it symbolises new beginnings and fresh starts. This goes hand in hand with the element of Air, as the first breath of air, gives new life to a human being.

 

Having the Air element in your life invokes new beginnings and the ability to be dynamic in all sorts of weather and situations (which every one of us needs nowadays!). It instils a feeling of balance and acceptance and gives us the tools we need in order to nurse our many different relationships to a healthy balance. There are various ways to invite this lovely element into your life, and I will be giving you a few fun exercises to try out over the following pages. Balance is needed in every aspect of daily life and a close connection with the element of Air is a very good thing to have due to this fact, so I would suggest constantly connecting to it, instead of just when you feel it is needed. Nevertheless, having the element of Air in your life is also very useful to connect to when:

 

v  You are beginning a new project or are embarking on a new stage or experience in your life.

v  You feel there are problems in a relationship (This means your relationship with yourself, a romantic relationship, or your relationship with the world).

v  You feel you need a sense of balance.

v  You feel you need to allow traits such as acceptance and love into yourself and your life.

v  You feel you need a sense of belonging or would like to create a sense of belonging in a certain place.

v  You are in a career that requires you to be interactive and have a constant relationship with others.

v  You feel you want to ‘open-up’ to new possibilities, as well as the process of allowing new things in and sharing things from within to the outside world.

v  You feel you need to be dynamic, versatile and mobile.

v  You have a feeling of being trapped or restricted.

 

Here are a few fun and simple ways in which to invite the amazing element of Air into your life (and keep it!):

 

BALANCE AND ENERGIZE YOUR HEART CHAKRA

 

Before the benefits and effects of the element of Air can really start to work in your life, you have to awaken all those traits and qualities within yourself. This, especially with the Air element, makes you more aware and fully receptive to its energies and the benefits of having them present within and around you. This exercise serves to open up your Heart Chakra to let out what needs be and allow in new energies to which you can give new responses. It focuses on the in and out, up and down, through and over movement of Air and its versatility. It also concentrates on the process of giving and receiving that is constantly going on between yourself and the world.

 

To answer the inevitable question, yes, of course, friend, it is best to do it outside!  Although, once again, anywhere is fine, as long as you feel close to the Air. In your garden, your aunt’s garden, the parking lot outside your flat block, the roof of your flat block, the living room, the bedroom, wherever! As long as you open up all the windows and feel close to the Air. Once you have found that spot, stand up straight, relaxed and close your eyes. Breathe in and out slowly, calmly and still your mind. On your in breath, imagine breathing in the purest cleanest Air, shining with a fantastic white light, and on your out breath, imagine all your stresses, thoughts and worries leaving you through your breath. Picture it as a big black cloud floating out of your body and away from you, up into the atmosphere, to where it can no longer harm. Do this for as long as you feel the need to and until you feel completely still and centred. Try to slowly increase the length of each breath comfortably as you continue.

Now, on your in breath, envision a shining ray of brilliant green light travelling down from the atmosphere above you, coming down towards you. The green light enters your body through the top of your head and stops in the middle of your chest, in the form of a glowing green ball. Feel your Heart Chakra open up. Then, let feelings of love, harmony and acceptance enter your body. Feel those feelings travel from your Heart Chakra downwards in the form of a stream of brilliant pink light, through your legs and through your feet, down into the Earth.

 

You may do this as many times as you’d like to maximize the effect or increase your own awareness and sensitivity to it. Then, open your eyes. I mean, how do you feel after just reading it? Amazing, isn’t it? This exercise is one of the best when it comes to dealing with the element of Air and its many qualities, as it incorporates the in and out, up and downward movements, as well as the activity in the Heart Chakra and the traits it governs. Not to mention, it is a perfect grounding exercise too! This grounds you to Earth and the world with love and acceptance, which is different to grounding yourself through your Base Chakra using qualities such as instinct and  survival.

 

Here is another great visualisation and channelling exercise that works just as well. You can try them out and see which you feel you benefit from the most and are able to feel closer to the qualities of Air within and around you. Have fun and explore!

 

Once again, find a place where you are comfortable and feel close to the energy of the Air element. Windows and doors open, or better yet, outside in the fresh or not-so-fresh open air. Now, let your mind still and clear it of excess thoughts. Kneel down on the ground on both knees and lower yourself to sit on your feet. Place your hands on your lap, palms facing upward. Do the same breathing exercise as before, slowly and calmly breathing in the energies and traits of the Air element and breathing out all the mental noise and stresses.

Now, keep your arms relaxed and your hands open. (Remember what I said about the hand sensitive to dispersing energy and the hand sensitive to receiving energy? It comes into play here.) On your in breath, imagine all the input from the outside world and what it gives to you entering your left hand. Imagine that running gracefully all the way up your left arm and through your Heart Chakra.

 

Now, on your out breath, imagine all that you give to the world as a big ball of energy coming from your Heart Chakra, flowing down your right arm, and out your right hand. Do this a few times over, as if the energies are running in a loop in and out, in and out, up your left hand side, through and out your right hand side. Feel your breathing and the expansion and contraction of your diaphragm. It’s a circle, you see. It brings to light the constant exchange of feelings you have with the world and that which the world has with you and gives to you. The important thing in this exercise, is to feel all of this with love and acceptance. This giving and receiving notion should be kept in your mind and your mind’s eye during the exercise. Now, open your eyes.

 

You should feel at peace and at ease with your ongoing and never-ending relationship with the world and with yourself. This exercise serves also to create that balance (temporarily, until it’s done every day or more) of giving and receiving energy within and without your body. I almost feel at peace just by explaining the exercise to you already! But, like I said, play around with different visual techniques and tools, this is only a basic outline.

 

 

GET A(i)RTSY FARTSY!

 

Now, we get to the fun part! (Not that that wasn’t fun, but everyone loves decorating, right?) This is the part where you incorporate the fresh element of Air into your everyday life by decorating appropriate places in your living space and home to remind you of your bond to this element, its qualities and allow its effects to take place in your life, positively.

 

Right, I’ve listed some of the items that are linked to the energy of the Air element on page 160. It is now your job to decide what you like best and feel would remind you of the Air element, when placed in your home. Feathers, leaves, wind chimes, dream catchers, the works! I find, personally, that Seagull feathers are the best looking ones – they’re big and look natural. If you don’t live near the sea, you can find all sorts of beautifully coloured feathers at an arts and crafts shop in your home town.

 

Once you’ve found them and have them in your possession, play with one or two feathers in your hands. Hold them and whisk them about in the Air slowly. Think about the qualities of Air – versatility, balance, equilibrium, freedom, fresh beginnings and exchange. Feel these traits and qualities and feel your chosen ‘Air items’ radiating them. Whatever your chosen items, find little places within your home to put them. You can place them all over, even the ceiling! But, remember to put one of the items in the side of your home that is facing East. It is the corresponding direction of Air and represents the fresh Sunrise, a new day with new beginnings.

 

Once the items are all placed, you now have these areas available to you to connect to the Air element. Whenever you feel you need it’s qualities and traits, stand in these areas and play with your chosen feathers or chimes and acknowledge and feel them. Do the exercises on page 165 and feel free to tailor them to what you feel more comfortable with. The element of Air, in all its grace, is now in your own home, for you to harness whenever you feel the need.

 

There are literally thousands of ways to invite the element of Air into your life, and these are just a few basic examples. Remember, though, to not only harness its energies when you feel the need or are in urgency. We all need a constant balance and equilibrium, which is one of the things this amazing element governs. Use it, feel it, thank the Air, and go placidly.

 

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The Elements cont. (extract from her new book – BE human) – 23/02


CHAPTER 3                                       

THE ELEMENTS

 

 

Earth – Air – Fire – Water

 

“True, without falsehood, certain and most true,

that which is above is the same as that which is below,

and that which is below is the same as that which is above,

for the performance of miracles of the One Thing.

And as all things are from the One,

by the meditation of One,

so all things have their birth from this One Thing by adaptation.

The Sun is its Father, the Moon its Mother,

the Wind carries it in its belly, its nurse is the Earth.

This is the Father of all perfection,

  • or consummation of the whole world.

Its power is integrating, if it be turned into earth.

You shall separate the earth from the fire,

the subtle from the gross, suavely,

and with great ingenuity and skill.

Your skilful work ascends from earth to heaven

and descends to earth again,

and receives the power of the superiors and of the inferiors. So thou hast the glory of the whole world–

therefore let all obscurity flee from thee.

This is the strong force of all forces,

  • overcoming every subtle and penetrating every solid thing. So the world was created.” – Hermes

 

 

At the thought of the elements, most people would start thinking about rivers, storms, tornados, deserts and so on. We generally separate ourselves from the elements, with the unconscious perception that the elements are their own, or even against us. This is so far from the truth, and in thinking this way, we have actually created this separation unintentionally. This has proven to be one of the greatest downfalls of humanity. The key now, is to change our perception of our relationship with the elements.

 

I am aware that I have been calling you ‘friend’ throughout the book so far, and whether you agree, don’t really mind, like or dislike it, I do believe we are friends. In my personal opinion, sister or brother would serve best, as that is really closer to the truth. Generally if you know, like and spend time with someone, you would refer to them as a friend. Although, as we all come from one thing, Planet Earth, and live under the same sky, in the same place- the Universe, we are literally sisters and brothers. When looking at the bigger scheme of things, it only makes sense. Having said that in a somewhat long (and productive) breath, I can steer you toward my point here. We have now established that we all descend from planet Earth in some way (depending on your religious beliefs) and live upon it. After reading the previous chapter, you are aware of what you are and how you function as one being – absolutely wonderfully. This now begs the question, “What about what is outside of us?”.

” We are all cells in the same body of humanity.” – Peace Pilgrim

Approximately nine months after your conception, you came into the world, kicking, screaming, bloody and eager to start your new life. You didn’t ask to be here, but here you are anyway. What gets to most people is the fact that they didn’t ask to be here, this leads to them feeling like the world owes them something, that there is no help, that they are solitary and that life doesn’t go much further than their own ‘daily grind’. Well… what we have here, folks, is the most destructive, unproductive and self-sabotaging mind set one could come across. The worst thing is that, it is so common today but, I do have good news for the owners of these lonely perceptions. The Earth we were born into and reside on, is here to nourish you. To be under the impression that you have just been left here to fend for yourself, without love, care and nourishment, is indeed the farthest thing from the truth. The Earth is here to take care of you and all you could ever need is readily available for you to use at your disposal. We are meant to make use of what is here (sparingly, of course). When you work with the Earth, you are in abundance. You will never suffer or be left wanting. You may mark my words, friend.

 

In this chapter, ‘the elements’, I’ll be taking you on a stroll through the workings of the natural elements, their functions and how they work in unison with your body. They serve to be present and made full use of in your life. Just as you have energies within you, they do too, and these energies can be harnessed (in the correct manner) to weave miracles in your life. As when we were born, we were intended to live as one with the natural world. This insight will hopefully give you the knowledge you require to live a life of flow and abundance. Between pages, go for a swim, enjoy the sunshine, have a long walk amongst some lush greens, let the wind play with your hair and remember that you already know all of this, you just need to unlock some of those rigid little doors we all have. Let the elements into your life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE FOUR ELEMENTS OF ANTIQUITY

 

The four major elements – Earth, Air, Fire and Water – are proved to have dominated natural philosophies for two thousand years or so. From the early days of man’s existence, he knew that all matter was formed from these four elements, ultimately. The first set theory stating this, was developed by the Greek philosopher, Empepedocles, of Sicily. This theory – or more belief – did not seize to be practiced until the rise and popularity of modern science. As other theories, belief systems, laws and questions came into play, we began to look for a more complicated answer to all matter in existence. It couldn’t have been as easy as one, two, three, four, could it? Well, yes! Of course it could, but not for us – we won’t settle for simplicity. We love to make things more complicated than they really are.

 

Although modern science has given us many blessings in breakthroughs and assisted us in countless ways, we have, nonetheless, lost our connection with the natural elements and forgotten how to accept the simplicity that lies in all matter and the unavoidable influence they have on our lives. Even today, Earth, Air, Fire and Water are still very accurate symbols for the four states of all matter – solid, liquid, gas, and plasma. Modern science has no doubt discovered new ideas, but in the field of Mysticism and holistic living, these elements are still of grave importance to illustrate and keep oneself rooted in the knowledge of the oneness of all things. There are ancient symbols linked to each element and they are still used widely today in many belief systems around the globe. Some mystics and yogis insist that the symbols of the four elements be placed on the temple and various alters in their home. It is not uncommon to see Earth(sand), a bowl or glass of water, candles(Fire) and feathers(Air) placed together in one location in a someone’s home, to commemorate, honour and be reminded to keep the awareness of the natural elements and all beings as coming from one origin.

 

There will be exercises explaining to you exactly how to invite and incorporate the natural elements into your life and how to harness their energies for certain purposes. These exercises are meant for you to explore and try out for yourself and see what works comfortably for you. I must tell you though, at the end of each element, there will be a summary of that specific one. Among the bullet summary, there is the specific time of day which the element’s energies correspond with. It is suggested that you do the exercises and techniques at these times with each different element but, it is of no urgency at all. There are also the corresponding incenses and it would be lovely if, when inviting a certain element into your life, this incense is used, but again, availability and ability sometimes don’t cooperate. So, if you aren’t able, don’t stress the tiniest bit. It’s only there to give you the knowledge and awareness but, it will not change the impact or intensity of the exercises.

 

Remember, to be completely at balance, one needs the energies of all four elements within and around you – not just one of the four every now and then. Having a constant reminder of the influence of the four elements in our lives is vital to our mental and physical well-being. No matter what your religion, one thing is true in all of them – we are all part of one Earth. This is the truest, most magickal thought that can alter any mood and bring you peace of mind. So get a handful of some soil, a bowl of water, a feather and a pretty candle and put it someplace special to remind you of the amazing interconnectedness of which you and I are a part of. Let’s explore this, shall we?

 

Isabelle Meiring

Holistic therapist and Spiritual counsellor

Port Elizabeth

+27 71 89 39 034

isabellemeiring@hotmail.com

http://www.theurbangardens.wordpress.com

 

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