I feel reasonably confident I don’t need to school you on hand washing or social distancing. Here, I’m extending a very gentle invitation; notice your feet, just now. Notice how you feel your feet on the ground; the balls of the feet, the heels, the toes.

Why is this important?

Anxiety, fear, hysteria, are often expressed in energy rising upward. Headaches or migraines. Shortness of breath or chest tightness. Heart palpitations. Sweaty palms. Mind racing. Insomnia with mind racing. Sure some of these could be viral. And, these are all common experiences of fear and are gripping MANY people throughout our city, country and world.

There is one acupuncture point on the sole of the foot. Yong Quan translates as Gushing Spring. It is the first point on the Kidney channel, is the most grounding point in the body. By noticing our feet on the ground, we are greeting this point, saying hello. Saying I need your help. This point “descends excess from the head, calms the spirit and revives consciousness” (1). In bringing awareness to our feet, it can be helpful to inhale drawing something tight (clenched fist, tight jaw, scrunched toes, pelvic floor) and exhale releasing the tension. Inhale, tighten. Exhale, release. Try it a few times.

And my invitation is just this. Feel your feet on the ground.

If you’d like to take it a step further, the River Rock practice is a lovely way to activate Kidney 1. For visual learners, here are a couple versions in written description: one illustrated with the Sumerian King Gudea,  another with Queen Mary of the West Indes. For those who appreciate an audio companion, you can find my voice walking you through this practice here for about 20 minutes.

It could be a few single breaths as your reading the feed on your phone, a couple minutes of pausing screen time working from home, pausing at a cross walk or stop sign waiting for the light to change, or a half an hour you carve out just for this purpose.

In addition to all measures currently advocated by Public Health and Government, have a look at this treasure trove of home remedies and earliest interventions for cold and flu. Please stay healthy and robust.

with deep care,
Amy

p.s. I have a sense that this ‘chapter’ might last a little while. So noting this as #1. I might write more often than I have in past months as we wend our way forward, one step at a time.

1. Deadman, P., Al-Khafaji, M. Baker, K., A Manual of Acupuncture, Journal of Chinese Medicine Publication, 2001.