Essentials for Autumn: Spirit, Energy & Resources

AUTUMN SPIRIT: Contract to the essentials and express yourself with the Lung (yin) and Large Intestine (yang) meridians

Essential Energy of Autumn

The essential ENERGY of Autumn, the season of Metal, is in the air that we breathe: KI, chi, qi … call it what you will. It’s time to get into some eliminating compression and inspired expansion. After all, you need to get rid of old stuff, strip back to the essentials, in order to make space for the new, exciting, energising stuff. This all makes perfect sense when you consider the meridians in action.

The Lung meridian is our link to the cosmos. Well calibrated Lung energy gives us vitality, inspiration and hope.

Meridians of Autumn

The lungs are responsible for expelling CO2 and the large intestine is obviously very involved in elimination. Looking beyond the obvious, all sorts of things could be ready for the out tray. Maybe it is an eating or sleeping habit, your clothes, your job – possibly a relationship of some sort. It might even be some old version of you – a version that is ready for a make-over.
It is important, however, to be reflective and responsible in your decision making, to keep hold of the essentials. Don’t be too quick to judge but don’t allow yourself to cling on to things beyond their use by date.

A healthy Large Intestine gives us the emotional flexibility and freedom of expression to let go of the old, negative stuff – calmly, with no strings attached.

Feeling Autumnal

Hope springs eternal …
If you just keep breathing out

Autumn or “Fall” can be experienced as a bit of a sad season, a season when we grieve for what has been lost or has had to be let go. When Metal is in harmony, however, this is balanced by optimism and faith. We know that the next breath will come. This supports us in the belief that our choices are well founded and that the cosmos will provide us with the necessary essentials.


I would love to see you for a seasonal Shiatsu – perhaps it’s just what you need to help you slough off that old stuff and get some new energy and ideas kicking in. Take note, however, some help is already at hand …

AUTUMN RESOURCES: keep your self-care on track!

Start by simply getting in touch with your essential Autumn energy:

  • Get out and move about in the early morning (i.e. well before 7 am) when you can breathe in the crisp air and the rising energy of the day.
  • You might try Masunaga’s Makko Ho to release and tonify both of the Metal meridians.
  • See also my VIDEO of the Lung / Large Intestine Makko Ho on my INSTAGRAM [barbara_richardson_zenshiatsu]. Video Series 2.1 – posted 19/05/2020.
  • Invest in better breathing. This will enhance any exercise you do.
  • For something more dynamic, there is always the good old Tarzan chest pounding to invigorate those key Lung points around the front of the shoulder.

Are you looking for something more demanding with your body work?

Essential Autumn Eating (and digesting) …


Maximize your intake of essential Autumn foods: those that are that are pungent, contractive and/or pro-biotic:

  • The intense root vegetables – ginger, radish, parsnip, carrot, Jerusalem artichoke – are a good place to start.
  • Cabbage is an excellent food for Autumn, particularly fermented as a pro-biotic sauerkraut – although it is also goes well in a soup.
  • Looking for something stronger? You could try horseradish or umeboshi plum.
  • Better still, combine the umeboshi with some stewed pears in kuzu – the best home remedy for soothing chest infection &/or lower intestine irritation.
  • Miso soup – particularly for breakfast – is an essential Autumn standby food that supports lower intestine function
  • If your large intestine is giving you some digestive difficulty – moderate or severe – you could try exploring some acupressure points in the forearm.


Try to avoid aged and processed foods, particularly those based on dairy or flour product. They will only clog your passages and clog your judgement. The more effective your colon and lungs are at eliminating and revitalizing the clearer your mind and the sharper your focus when it comes to working through some of the more difficult decisions.

Whatever you do, keep yourself warm in the cooling weather and make the most of this beautiful Autumn.

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