While we here in the Northeast are familiar with (and rely upon) a January Thaw, it is less common to receive a dose of Spring in December. On this Silent Sunday, that unexpected treat has arrived. The outside air does not “bite,” the morning light holds a misty brightness, and the distinct lift of energy permeates inside and out. In an effort to make the most of this brief interruption of Winter’s climatic challenges, today I suggest a turn to essential oils. By applying certain oils to potent points on the Liver and Gallbladders meridians (the partnered organ system of Spring) one can support a feeling of brightness and clarity. Simultaneously, with the anointment of points on the Kidney and Bladder channels, a burst of warmth and energy can be stimulated and stored for the inevitable return to cold and darkness.
The oils that will foster the energy of Spring points for today’s treatment are orange (or bergamot) and geranium (or lavender). You may use carrier oil if you like; however, because each point will be dotted with only one drop of an oil, your skin likely can tolerate the direct application. With your fingertip, place a drop of orange oil on each temple: This point lies near the beginning of the Gall Bladder meridian. Orange will encourage the smooth flow of Qi throughout the blood and Liver system. Additionally, by placing the oil at the sides of the forehead, any tendency toward obsessive or anxious thoughts will be calmed.
The next stop along the Spring route lies at the opposite end of the body: the deep V-point that lies between metatarsals 1 and 2 (the first two toe bones, on the top of the foot). Here, on each foot, anoint the Liver point with your choice of geranium or lavender. The antispasmodic and nerve-soothing qualities of either of these oils will further support a steady stream of Qi.
Special note: There is no need to rinse or wipe off any residue from an oil before you apply the next. If anything, the slight blending will create an enhancing synergy for the overall effect.
To address the Water element (Kidney and Bladder), juniper oil helps to warm and balance Winter’s proclivity toward depression and lethargy. (Pine oil is a wonderful alternative, and certainly of the season.) Place one drop of the oil on each of the boney knobs at the center of the collarbone, which is associated with the end points of the Kidney channel. In order to secure the oil’s energy, go to the opposite end of the meridian, which ironically is known as Bubbling Spring. On the bottom of each foot, between metatarsals 2 and 3, place additional drops of juniper.
Now, move on to the Bladder by anointing the lower back, directly behind the navel. This is the Ming Men point, which acts as a lead-in to the entire lower body; stiff legs or aching feet may be addressed by working with this point. Here, place a drop of ginger oil on each side of the spine. The warming quality of this oil will help to soothe a fussy back or unsettled digestion.
Once you have thoroughly anointed yourself, find a quiet place to sit or lie down. In either position, perhaps you would like to create Apan Mudra. Typically, the mudra is used to encourage the removal of metabolic waste and emotional debris from the body and mind; however, it also ignites Wood energy, the element associated with Spring. So, on each hand, touch the thumb tip to the tips of the middle and ring fingers. If seated, place the backs of the hands on the knees; if supine, you may place the hands, palms down on the belly, or palms up on the floor alongside you. With eyes closed and gazing up to the Third Eye, breathe slowly and steadily, and enjoy the array of light scents that already have begun to work on your behalf.