Wood represents our capacity to be born and to grow and is associated with the season of spring. Just as the trees reach and grow upwards towards the fire of the sun, so their roots reach deep down to access the water they need to sustain their growth. It is the wood that gives us the same capacity to reach upwards and outwards with vision and determination and to grow so that we too can reach our full potential. Wood gives us the structure and flexibility to plan and create our lives. It gives us fresh ideas and new ways of thinking. Wood gives us a sense of hope and the ability to try and try again with renewed vigour when things don’t go according to plan. It brings a sense of freshness to our ideas and new ways of thinking so that we can structure our lives with flexibility and a sense of purpose.
Fire gives us the capacity to be warm, open and loving and is associated with the season of summer. Just as the blazing sun brings warmth, colour and vibrancy to our world, enticing the flowers to unfurl their petals and bask in its glow, the fire element brings us the warmth we need to blossom and the capacity to love and be loved. It helps us to mature, communicate and share and it enables us to relate to others with intimacy and joy. Here we find our passion; our ability to feel joy in all areas of our lives. It is the fire element that brings out the very best in us, for when we feel emotionally protected by love, we communicate with openness and honesty.
Earth gives us the capacity to receive and be satisfied and is associated with the season of late summer and a time of harvesting. Just as the boughs of the apple trees offer their glorious, fruitful bounty at the completion of their cycle, the Earth element offers us the ability to receive goodness from the world. It provides a feeling of fullness and satisfaction and a sense of reciprocity and care, both for ourselves and for others. By feeling centred and grounded and at one with ourselves and the world around us, it enables us to understand ourselves and to sympathise with others without sacrificing our own integrity.
Metal gives us the capacity to see the quality and value of life and is associated with the season of autumn. When the reddened leaves wither and are discarded from the trees, our eyes can focus on the branches that lie stripped bare beneath. We are able to admire their stark beauty and the promise they hold within. It is metal that gives us our sense of self-worth and the ability to look beyond whilst accessing the treasures that lie deep inside. The metal within gives us the capacity to evaluate that which is precious and the power to let go of the things, thoughts and desires that are no longer needed. Metal offers the profound ability to create new life through death.
The water element is associated with the season of winter and is the most mysterious and elusive of all the elements. Water gives us our sense of movement and flow. Like the crashing waterfall, tumultuous rapids or the calm, deep stillness of a mountain lake, the water element is both our power and our limitless reservoir of calm. Water gives us the capacity to find our inner strength and the deepest sense of ourselves. It is our source and the ultimate life-giving and sustaining element. Just as the season of winter gives us the time to pause, regenerate and gather strength, the water gives us the power to adapt and the will and drive to fulfil the potential gifted to us at birth.