Friday, January 29, 2010
The Reasons Why
Do you believe in cause and effect? Some days I'm not so sure there is an explanation for every single thing, or maybe it's more accurate to say that some days I believe the world to be so complicated that there really is no way to explain why things are as they are, which is not to say we shouldn't try. But perhaps we are a bit ambitious to believe we ever can. I mean really.
I'm thinking about cause and effect this morning because this week, I believe somewhat inadvertently, the Sufi acupuncturist named his diagnosis of my most central disharmony. He was trying to explain his approach to helping me through my springtime allergies, something we are already gearing up for. I'm sure he didn't realize I would spend most of the afternoon after my treatment looking through books on Chinese medicine, finding the symptoms associated with this disharmony, connecting the dots in my never ending search to figure out WHY I am the way I am.
What I learned was indeed fascinating and spot on. No wonder I overreact to the surge of life force in spring! The diagnosis, kidney yang deficiency, means that my life gate fire is subdued. In order to respond appropriately to spring in the fecund midatlantic, one must have a roaring bonfire of kidney yang to balance the inner with outer. Because of the weakness in my life gate fire, the upsurge of spring feels like an attack. My body overreacts. Back in the days before I saw the acupuncturist, all of May was a miserable fog of sneezing, dripping and congestion.
What I especially love about this diagnosis is the fact that it's not my fault! Kidney yang is something you're either born with or without. My mother, like most American moms in the 1950's, smoked cigarettes, drank martinis and coffee while pregnant. Am I saying it's her fault? Nah. She had no idea she was depleting my resources; she was just living her life. My diagnosis is a case of no fault disharmony. As it turns out, I've done my best, unconsciously, to restore that deficiency. All the foods I love the most help build kidney yang. Edifying to know I've tried.
The way my energy flags in the afternoons, my spring allergies, my flaky willpower, the fact that I have such a hard time returning phone calls? It's NOT MY FAULT people, it's not. It's not weakness of character or psychosomatics or neurosis, oh no! It's kidney yang deficiency. Cause and effect - oh yeah!
I know, it doesn't account for every one of my flaws, it is not a unifying theory of everything nor is it a bullet-proof excuse, but I'm kind of in love with my diagnosis this week. It feels nice to take myself off the hook for a few days, it really does. OK? OK.