Greetings Dear Readers,
As human beings in this modern age we are more stimulated than ever before. A seemingly endless barrage of sights, sounds and information. How much is meaningful? How much is true? The Small Intestine energy is responsible for separating the pure from the impure. If the Small Intestine channel is weak, it may not be performing this discrimination function at top capacity. On a mental level, a person may not be weighing their options correctly to come to the right decision. Small Intestine energy allows us healthy discrimination or discernment (not the same as judgment). When this happens we use the clarity of wisdom to decide what we take in and what to leave out.
Do you ignore advertising pop-ups when you’re emailing or doing some internet research? This is your Small Intestine energy (A.K.A. your “Inner Spam Filter”, as my teacher says) working extra hard so you can concentrate. In Buddhism this work is actually a type of spiritual practice called “restraining the doors of the sense powers”. It means guarding ones’ eyes, ears and such by avoiding looking at or hearing things which disturb the mind. In this way our mind can be clear and sharp. This kind of a mind allows us to communicate well, make good decisions and focus on what adds value to our own and others’ lives.
The Small Intestine is the outer gateway to the Heart channel. Small Intestine is Yang while the Heart is Yin. The Small Intestine energy protects the Heart (also called the Emperer in TCM) by filtering out energies or thoughts that would damage this inner most aspect of our being. In TCM, as well as many Asian philosophies and religions, the heart is the residence of the mind/spirit/subtle mind (depending upon which philosophy you ascribe to).
Getting stuck in life can result from not enough sorting through our experiences to inform our actions. Or once we’ve made a decision, a lack of Gall Bladder Qi is often a cause of procrastination; this decision is made but we fail to act. The Small Intestine belongs to the Fire element. Fire=light, a light which can show us the truth, a light on our path so we can see which steps to take next. During the Fire season of summer, or any time you feel your mind is too busy and not clear, it’s helpful to support you Small Intestine energy by clearing your mental clutter. Meditation, de-cluttering your space and/or trying to keep life simple allows room for you to gather your focus and sort things out.