I've been celebrating solstice in New Mexico now for the last 38 or so years. Many of my southern California friends don't understand why anyone would want to head towards the snow and cold, rather than run from it. I guess it's a matter of what you're used to. For me, a change of seasons is a wonderful thing. It helps me feel the cycles of life - to be in touch with a sense of ending and a sense of beginning. Solstice is, after all, the planet's New Year. This shortest day of the year marks the beginning of the returning of the light.
In Chinese medicine there's a deeply felt connection with the seasons and the cycles of life. There are entire treatment protocols based on the time of day, the season of the year etc. It's a medicine that views people as part of a web of life - not separate from it. The cycles of the seasons that we see around us is reflected within us, and our health depends upon our ability to flow through the changes without getting seriously "stuck" in any one season, emotion, pattern of behavior, etc.
I'm looking forward to the coming year with anticipation and wonder. I fully expect there to be changes - those come with life, after all. I like the sense of slowing down that happens at the end of the year - a pause before beginning a new cycle. It's a good time to take time to stop, reflect and gather your strength before the next cycle gets into full swing. I don't know about you, but I find myself reaching for my journal more often. Some of my friends remember more of their dreams at this time of the year.
What about you? What do you feel about the long nights and cooler temperatures? Am I the only one who appreciates a little "hibernation" time?
We were taught in acupuncture school that this is the best point for nausea, and indeed, it is effective. For anyone who has suffered from sea sickness, you might have run across something called "sea bands" - elastic bands that are worn around the wrist with a small plastic disc on them. The band is to be worn so that the disc is right on Pericardium 6, thus stimulating this point. I've had more than one person report that it works.
But traditionally this point is used for more than nausea and vomiting. It can also be used for anxiety, or any sensation of fullness in the chest, as it helps blood flow in the chest - especially when there is also some kind of abdominal pain.
You don't need to buy sea bands, either. You can simply stimulate this point with your fingers. Don't be afraid to apply pressure - you're not going to hurt yourself. All you have to lose is the anxiety and or nausea. Knowing the right points to use can come in handy!
I've been practicing acupuncture and Chinese medicine for over 25 years, and this ancient wisdom never gets old. I love helping people feel better without the need for drugs or surgery.