Calling Upon the Summer SolsticeThe summer solstice, which is the day in which summer begins, is a time of profound power, and when we call upon and align with the energy of this time, we become the embodiment of growth, abundance, vitality, and increased life force. The solstice is a time that has been celebrated and honored since ancient times, and is deeply aligned with the element of fire. During this day, it feels as though the sun is unwavering in the sky, illuminating the world without an intent to leave. Matter of factly, because of this phenomenon, it makes sense that the word “solstice” is derived from the Latin word meaning “still.” This time, energetically, asks us to align ourselves with the cycle of re-birth and death. We are invited to look within ourselves, assessing our goals, and achievements to date. While winter solstice asks us to move inward, deeply analyzing what we truly want out of our times here on this earth, deeply nourish our being, and find groundedness, summer solstice is a time of letting go. We separate ourselves from what no longer serves us, and seek to remove barriers that stand in the way of achieving our most fruitful, abundant life.
Energetics of Summer
While the solstice marks the “true” initiation of summer, the key elements of the energetics of this time continue throughout the season. We are moving fully away from the darkness of winter and spring, and fully into the light and heat. It is this time of year we likely feel the most alive, as life force energy is moving swiftly through our bodies, and in the environment around us. Fire energy is also prominent around us during the summer. This might be in subtle ways such as the barbeques shared with friends and family, or the campfire you may sit in circle around on warm summer evenings. It might also display itself much more prominently, perhaps in the way the stars seem to shimmer twice as brightly on nights absent of clouds, or in the way that if we are not careful and attentive, the energy of the sun can leave burns on our skin.
Practices to Align with the Summer SeasonSummer asks us to go for it. It is a time of growth and abundance and pursuing our dreams utilizing the fire that is burning deep within us. Summer reminds us that we have all that we need already, and illuminates the path forward toward living our life most authentically.
- Indulge in Creativity. Have you felt a block for a long time? This time of year asks us to create. The energy of this time deeply nourishes creative needs as it is a support system needed to achieve abundance. Since ancient times, humans have been incredibly creative creatures, and choosing to make art or dive into that project you have been putting off can be deeply affirming for the soul.
- Hydrate. As we know, the season of summer is closely aligned with fire energy. The increased temperatures, as well as the closeness of the sun to our environment during this time will pull water from our bodies much more easily. Not only is it important energetically speaking to drink water regularly in order to ensure that an imbalance of fire energy does not occur within us, it is an important basic safety practice during summer months to avoid dehydration.
- Explore new things. While spring asks us to let go of that which no longer serves us, summer aligns with the feelings of energy and activity. Summer is the perfect time to explore new things, new places, new activities, new friends, new ideas, or new practices. When your energy is high and the daylight is long, get out into the world and find what may be awaiting you.
- Spend time in Nature. Allow yourself to fully indulge in the life force vitality of this time. One way we can honor the seasonal energetics of summer is to fully surrender to this concept. Allow the fire energy to move fully through you as you move your body. Express immense gratitude as you dance with your feet upon the earth. Explore the top of a mountain, the bottom of a stream, jump into the garden with your whole being. Truly feel the music you may be playing in your deepest self (or perhaps the music of the birds singing!). Allow yourself to simply be alive in a truly wholesome way.
Herbal Allies for SummerLiving in alignment with seasonal energetics is also about seeking balance with their corresponding energies. This helps us to avoid imbalances that may result in discomfort or conditions within our bodies. For example, in summer, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, these include such things as feelings of irritation or agitation, excessive perspiration or perhaps heat rashes and hives, or disruptions to our sleep. Therefore, we should seek to balance the fire energy by consuming cooling herbs and foods. Foods typically associated with fire in TCM are those that are also usually bitter. This is due to the fact that these types of foods stimulate our digestive fire, alleviating sluggishness or stagnation in the body, and also encouraging the body to produce saliva to help jumpstart the process. These types of foods are typically greens such as spinach, kale, swiss chard, as well as herbal greens such as chickweed, plantain, and nettle. Additionally, cooling herbs include those that have diaphoretic (meaning they increase sweating, helping to alleviate the body of excess heat) or astringent (meaning they have a cooling and drying effect in the body, helping to balance excessive moisture in the form of humidity and heat) actions.
Join us for Seasonal Energetic Class and learn all about which herbs and foods are best for this season.Each season, we will offer a class that is comprehensive and in-depth, teaching participants how to align themselves with the rhythms of each season. This class series will take a deep dive into the energetics of the seasons and how these affect your body and your state of health, and apply this knowledge in easy-to-use ways so you can begin to match your body to the rhythms of nature. We will discuss energetics from an Ayurvedic, TCM, and Western herbal perspective; touching on ancient traditions as well as their modern counterparts. We will cover herbs, foods, and lifestyle habits for each season to help bring, and keep, your body into harmony with the world around you. These will be longer, lecture-style classes, so come prepared to take notes and discuss! Summer Energetics Class: Sunday, June 13th, 2-4 pm MST. This will be a zoom class so if you can’t make it live you can still sign up and get the recording. Cost $10/person Click here to register for the class! Thank you so much for joining us on this exploration of summer energy, and we hope to see you soon!
- Five Element Healing. “SUMMER: The Season of Abundance; The Element of Fire.” Five Element Healing. 2021. Retrieved from: https://fiveelementhealing.net/summer-the-season-of-abundance-the-element-of-fire
- Kolen, Raychel. “Guide to Basic Herbal Actions.” Mountain Rose Blog. 14 August 2013. Retrieved from: https://blog.mountainroseherbs.com/understanding-herbal-actions
- Metzger, Jane. “3 Cooling Herbal Teas for Summer.” The Herbal Academy. 27 July 2017. Retrieved from: https://theherbalacademy.com/3-cooling-herbal-teas-for-summer
- Whitehead, Zoe. “Summer Solstice and It’s Energetic Impact.” Spiritual Marketing for Healers. 17 June 2020. Retrieved from: https://spiritualmarketingclub.com/summer-solstice-and-its-energetic-impact