The Earth Element represents our center or home base. Instinctively we are always trying to find our way home. Our home is where we center, gather energy, and rejuvenate. A strong Earth element allows us to unfold our life from within outward.
The Earth element is in charge of nourishment. The organs corresponding to Earth are the Spleen and Stomach. They are the nucleus of all the internal organs and their function is essential to health. The Spleen-Stomach act as a pivot in the digestion process. When we eat and drink, the Spleen transforms the food and water to Qi-vital energy. If this function is faulty, instead of pure Qi, the food and water will be retained as dampness-mucus. Since the next step in the process is to send the pure Qi to the lung, instead of Qi, mucus is transported. The lung will then retain the mucus, and or dump it to the sinus. If the Spleen is strong, food and water are converted properly, pure Qi is produced, and we will have abundant energy. If weak, we will have physical and mental fatigue.
How do we physically strengthen our Earth element? The Spleen is strengthened by moderately eating good quality foods with a sweet taste. The best form of sweets are whole grains like brown rice, and yellow-orange vegetables like butternut squash. Since they are grown deep within the earth, root vegetables are also excellent. The worst sweets are white sugar, artificial sugar, and corn syrup. Acupuncture is the best direct therapy for the Spleen-Stomach.
Since the Earth element represents the center, it has a strong stabilizing, grounding effect on the mind-body. In the fast pace world in which we live, it is very easy for our mind to run rapid and out of control. Worry and obsessive thoughts are an example of a mind that has no root. How do we root the mind? Nature walks ground the mind-body. Tai Chi is the best exercise for strengthening and connecting to the earth energy. The entire exercise is based on physical and mental rooting and structural alignment with the earth.
The main virtue of the Earth element is humbleness. The earth is humble and we often hear the term “down to earth.” It is not easy to be humble. Humble is not glamorous or sexy. Living in big cities where inflated ego is the norm, being humble is often viewed as a sign of weakness. Actually the opposite is true. It takes courage to lower the ego. As we get older and wiser, we understand that by being real, you will attract the right personal and professional people in your life.There is no reason to put on a big front. Since the Earth element has a receptive energy, abundance in the form of love and respect will radiate to you once you just Be Who You Are.