The healing power of the 4 elements: Fire
Hello 🔥 people!
When I was showering I got this idea (surprise, business people should start showering before brainstorming! ) that I could write a series on the 4 elements. Not from an astrological or philosophical perspective, but from a healing perspective. Each element brings us closer to nature and each element is neccessary for us, in order to maintain life here on Planet Earth. The water we use for washing and manufacturing, drinking and swimming. The air that we breathe. The earth itself, the ground we walk on could be seen as the floor in the house of existence. And fire. Fire, fire, fire. Without fire, we would not be here. Without fire, we could not have been able to prepare our food that made our brains develop, that made us build the complex construction of society that protects us and makes it possible for us to live for more, than just the maintenance of our basic needs.
And here we are me and you. Creatures of the complex world that we've built, one person writing and the other person behind their own screen, reading. The elements are a source of joy, vitality and relaxation. A part of me, let's call it intuition, feels that the elements could be a source of deeper happiness because they bring out our senses, the human side within us which is easy to forget when life wants you to behave and act perfectly which is as far as you can get from being human. Therefore, we will take this opportunity and explore the healing power behind each of the four elements, together! As always I'm open for comments and discussion either here or in private. I also wish this would make some of you 90's kids nostalgic because for some reason, we grew up with series that revolved around the four elements such as W.I.T.C.H and H2O Just Add Water. But let's start shall we? The first element in this little series will be fire, the magical and somewhat dangerous element that keeps us warm and afraid at the same time.
What is fire?
Fire is a chemical reaction or to be more exact the result of a chemical reaction called combustion. During the combustion process flames are formed. This stage of combustion is called the ignition point. Flames mainly consist of nitrogen, water vapor, oxygen and carbon dioxide.
What do we commonly associate fire with?
Warmth is probably the most common association but so is a certain cautiousness towards the possible dangers of fire. In other words we both fear it and love it.
Fire is very comforting. In fact the Danish hygge includes it as a factor in achieving a sense of wellbeing and relaxation. Sitting around a campfire at night and telling stories, perhaps someone even brings out the guitar and plays a few beautiful tunes. I bet enjoying a campfire is something that most of us are naturally very good at. A more everyday way to use fire is lighting candles, something that is also considered very hygge. Food or drink that has been prepared over a fire is also a pretty wonderful and comforting process. It almost tastes better when prepared over fire. Maybe that's the famous umami or maybe fire just brings out the human within us, that savage side we always make an effort to hide. But why do we fear fire? And why do we keep using it as a way to enrich our language? Fire can be viewed as something unpredictable, something we may loose control over and therefore it is also a very good metaphor for the unpredictable parts of life.
We had taken the train from Olomouc to explore other towns and cities in Czech Republic. We got aboard this old Russian styled train that was very noisy and full of atmosphere. I thought of Anna Karenina. We played a game of cards and just like that we were at our final destination. Our destination was a Nature Preservation Center. We were told to work in groups during a teambuildning exercise they organized for us. My group went outside and we must have only taken a few steps when I saw it: a campfire! We sat down on some rocks and brewed tea over the fire together. Unfortnately I don't remember what type of tea it was but what I do remember is how wonderful that moment was. Even if I wasn't home it felt like home among those strangers and in front of the campfire.
How to use fire for healing
Candlelight replacing the light of your phone
Remember when your history teacher told you how people used to sit around the fire telling eachother stories? What will our teachers tell our kids after 50 years? "A typical activity for humans is that a group of people called family pretend to spend some time together but instead they are all looking at their phones". What if we would put our phones away and talk to eachother in front of a campfire or fireplace? I think this is a great way to use fire for mindfulness and healing. It can truly help us to live in the present moment.
Fireplace for audio relaxation
The crackling sound of a campfire or fireplace is amongst our favorite sounds. Sound can have a very calming and healing effect. Fortunately you don't even need real fire to enjoy the sounds of it! There are many great recordings of fire that one can listen too while enjoy a warm beverage on a rainy day for example.
Staring deeply into a campfire
A personal favorite of mine. Fire makes us modern humans just as hypnotized as it did when we first discovered it. If you are a overthinker then I highly recommend that you'll just sit down for a moment and watch the fire. I'm almost certain that it forces you into a calmer state of mind.
Quotes about 🔥:
There may be a great fire in our hearts, yet no one ever comes to warm himself at it, and the passers-by see only a wisp of smoke.
Vincent Van Gogh
The instruction we find in books is like fire. We fetch it from our neighbours, kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all.
I was the first woman to burn my bra - it took the fire department four days to put it out.
If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can ever warm me, I know that is poetry.
I hope you feel warm and cosy right now 😌