Metal Time: Meditation and Reflection
Last week’s blog post was an introduction to the Chinese Clock, a daily cycle of energy through the meridians that helps to govern our daily rhythm. Today, we dive deeper into Metal Element Time, which represents when energy peaks in the Lung and Large Intestine Meridians.
The daily energy cycle starts at 3am with Lung Time. The lungs are called a “reactive” organ because of their relationships with the environment. We breathe in the world/life as we breathe in air. If there is a toxin or allergen present, the lungs and upper respiratory system react immediately, resulting in things like runny nose, cough, wheezing. or hives. When the lungs work well, we can fully inhale and exhale.
The lungs are about more than just reactivity, though. They are also about vitality because as they disperse air and energy throughout the body, they energize the entire meridian system. In Chinese medicine, it is said that the lungs are responsible for dispersing Qi, so without the action of the lungs, there is no Qi distribution.
The lungs also help us process sadness and grief. If you find yourself waking up between 3am and 5am, you might be struggling to process sadness or grief or you might have a lung condition.
At 5am, the energy moves from the Lungs to the Large Intestine Meridian, rising to its peak at 6AM. This is the best time of the day to move the bowels, as well as to wash your body and to comb your hair (some say combing the hair clears stuck energy from the mind). In addition, the Large Intestine Meridian is about letting go. Letting go is not just about eliminating biological waste but also letting go of things like letting go of our emotions. If things are out of balance, emotions of defensiveness or feelings of being stuck could arise.
Metal Element Time is a time for quiet reflection and/or restful sleep. Some people like monks will actually get up around 4am to begin to meditate as this time has been proven good for such activity.
A healthy and balanced person is focused, has a sharp memory, and finds strength in solitude at this time of the day. In addition, a person who is well-balanced within Metal processes grief and loss appropriately.
Metal Element Time also represents maximum contraction (Winter is Metal time on an annual cycle). At this time in the daily cycle, the heart rate, breathing, and brain activity have been shown to dip significantly.
I hope you’ve found this week’s post about Metal Element Time useful in beginning to understand your body’s daily cycle.