This month in Ireland, a young teacher, Aishling Murphy was murdered as she took an afternoon run along the canal. There was an outpouring of grief and anger as people found their voice to express their feelings of fury, outrage and sadness. Raising the awareness and calling for a stop to violent crime against women.
As I am parenting 3 young men, 19, 19 and 16 I thought it would be a good idea to have a conversation about being aware of violent crime against women by men. They became very angry, understanding my discussion as a personal attack towards them, as men.
What do we do with all this anger? It’s scary stuff. Bourne from fear, anger is a powerful response used to protect ourselves. We can use it to make others wrong, whilst we are right. But dividing and separating, making one gender/food/action/religion right and another wrong, leads to hatred and more fear. As the Buddha wisely said “in this world, hate never yet dispelled hate. Only love dispels hate.”
It can be hard to love when we feel fear, scared that we, like Aishling, might be randomly attacked.
But questioning fears and judgements with “What is causing my fear? Is it real or imagined? means more likely that we live in love and act from compassion.
This doesn’t mean letting people walk all over you or allowing atrocities or violent crime, but it means your actions are from love not from fear, and that always has a different outcome.
In theory that sounds great, but how do we do this in practice?…… By working with the Liver. In Chinese Medicine this organ is associated with anger. It’s powerful; the only organ in the body that can regrow.
By understanding the Liver using the 5 elements of Chinese medicine, we can work with the powerful strength of this energy. When the fear wound is triggered, anger rushes to protect. But if our Liver energy is balanced, we can retain perspective and vision in the fear, so hope and positive action can come, from where the hurt lies.
The Liver governs the sinews and tendons, managing flexibility and flow. It is essential that the liver energy can express itself either by drawing, painting, dancing, choosing what to wear, what to eat or how to style your hair. The energy of life wants to express itself with your unique voice. If self expression is curtailed the energy can turn inward and lead to depression or bubble under the surface, only to explode like a volcano.
So use your voice, shake your body and shout out loud. If you feel like you want to scream and shout – do it !! not at someone but get a pillow and punch it.
Bang your fists on the bed, get it out, let it out. Use your voice, cry, laugh, shout, sing let it all out, get it all out, because “the part of you that is suffering, is the part that calls in change and you don’t have to feel ashamed, there is nothing to forgive. The part of you that is crying out is the part that wants to live” *Hope comes – The Bensons
Accessing and expressing your rage is an opportunity for hope and action that can change the world. By accessing the emotion we are more likely to transform it to love and compassionate action rather than transfer it through fear and blame.
Working with this organ and meridian system with acupressure, food and mindfulness we can prevent the hot headed rage that clouds our vision and impairs our heart.
The Liver loves sour foods to clear the organ especially Umeboshi plum. Legend has it that the Samurai warrior carried this amazing ingredient in a pouch as a field ration, and after battle they would take a taste to “take the war out of the man” and harmonise the system.
The simplest way is to take this amazing ingredient is 1/2 tsp of the umeboshi plum paste added to a mug of hot water. Dissolve and drink down.
Find plenty of recipes using this fantastic ingredient in my books
On the flip side avoid fatty, rich foods such as ice-cream, red meat, sugary drinks, cheese and alcohol as these congest the liver. You may find you are quick to hot headed, uncontrolled outbursts if your diet is full of these foods.
The Liver’s sensory organ is the eye so be aware of what you are focusing on. Let your focus linger on things that make you feel good.
If you are overthinking a problem, take a break, shift your focus for a minute or two, look at something that gives you pleasure – the clouds, flowers, photo’s of amazing people or places. Put a song on that makes you happy.
This isn’t the same as putting your head in the sand and ignoring a problem but it’s giving perspective and a wider view – this will help the body loosen and the energy flow.
Take your perspective wide, become aware of the miracle that you are, stuck by gravity, to a planet spinning at 1000miles per hour in one of two trillion galaxies as part of an ever expanding universe.
Why not sign up for a FREE Qi Gong session on the last weekday of each month covering energy exercises, acupressure points and 5 element food tips to shift your energy and feel balanced