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What is the Earth Element

What is the Earth Element

The five elements of nature - earth, water, fire, air and space - exist in the world around us and within us. Our bodies are made up of these five elements and they govern several functions on a subtle and gross level. Balancing and activating the elements of nature ensures good health and well-being, and keeps diseases at bay. The more time we spend in nature, the more balanced we are mentally, physically and physiologically. There are also various practices that can help us balance the five elements within us, from certain colors to scents, yoga practices, and more. Interestingly, each element is connected to a part of the human body. The earth element, for example, is synonymous with our feet up to the thighs. In this article we will look at the Earth element in more detail, how to balance it, and practices to activate and energize the element.  

Understanding the earth element 

The earth element is all about staying grounded and stable. There are many external factors today that affect the earth element such as excess time indoors, rarely being barefoot, constantly looking at screens, living in concrete jungles, etc. This creates a disconnect between the earth and true selves. The longer we are disconnected the more we focus on ourselves, the ‘I’, and thus, our ego. We tend to focus more on materialistic desires and wants, and the stress of jobs and relationships. We tend to forget about the fact that there is life beyond the four walls around us. This disconnects us from our true nature, our higher consciousness and our real self. 

Reconnecting with the earth element 

So how can you reconnect with the earth element? How do you keep the earth element balanced and activated? One of the strongest ways to reconnect with the earth element is through our senses. Certain practices that involve the senses activate the earth element within us, connecting us to the element on a deeper and more real level. Apart from this, several yoga practices are impactful in connecting us to the earth element. 

Sensory practices to reconnect with the earth element

A powerful sensory practice to reconnect with the earth element is through earthing. Earthing, also known as grounding, is the practice of connecting the body to the natural earth via barefoot walking. This technique lowers inflammation, enhances the immune system, and is healing in nature. How does this work? There’s a bit of science to it. The earth’s surface contains negatively charged particles while devices, wifi and other modern-day items contain positively charged particles, which can affect health and well-being. So by taking a much-needed break from phones and reconnecting to the earth the built-up positive ions are neutralized. This makes us feel more balanced and grounded, emotionally, mentally and physically. 

Another sensory-based practice is consuming the right food. According to Ayurveda, each type of taste is linked to an element and can either balance or cause an imbalance. This is based largely on the dominant elements in our body. This is also connected to doshas (body composition), where certain foods are better suited to dominant doshas. This keeps us better energized and balanced. Sweet and sour tastes are more suited to the earth element. They nourish the body, strengthen the tissues and help the body absorb more vitamins and nutrients. A few examples of sweet foods are melons, beetroot, sweet potato, cardamom and cinnamon and sour foods include grapefruit, lemon, pickles, tomatoes and vinegar. It’s best to get a consultation to know your dosha, and accordingly consume foods that will balance the earth element in you. 

Walking in nature, viewing and absorbing the trees and plants around you, noticing the color of the trees and leaves are ways to balance the earth element through the sense of sight. Notice how the leaves change color from season to season. Spending time outdoors, unplugging from digital screens, is a technique popularly called forest bathing today. Similarly, stop to smell the flowers, breathe in the fresh air and reawaken your earth element through the sense of smell. 

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Yoga practices for the earth element

Mantras and meditation

The root chakra, the Muladhara Chakra is linked to the earth element. The earth element  is linked to the colour red. So meditating on a red symbol or object is helpful. The square is also the symbol for the earth. Thus, meditating on a mandala, a yellow square is also beneficial. You can also meditate on the mantra LAM, which is the Beej mantra for the earth element. Repeating the mantra LAM will improve concentration, awareness and inner strength, the qualities associated with the earth element. Lying down and practicing yoga nidra is also beneficial for the earth element. 

Yoga poses for the earth element

Any yoga posture that brings awareness to the feet and legs, up to the thighs are useful in activating the earth's energy. Some natural positions like Tadasana, the mountain pose and Malasana, the garland pose are great here. Keep your awareness on the breath and the feet or legs when practicing. Other useful yoga asanas are the Veera Bhadrasana (Warrior 1), Vrikshasana (tree pose), and Uttanasana (standing forward fold).

Tree Pose

Breathing techniques for the earth element

Box breathing and full yogic breathing are Pranayama techniques that are beneficial in activating the earth element. They infuse the body with energy, and ensure you are breathing deeply and correctly. 

The earth element is connected to stability and balance. A healthy connection to the earth element keeps you rooted, grounded, and confident yet flexible. An imbalance of the earth element causes muscular fatigue and weakness, lack of calcium or brittle bones, high cholesterol and weight loss or weight gain. On a personality level, excess earth energy results in stubbornness, anxiousness and a feeling of insecurity. 

Improve your health and well-being, stay stable and strong and rooted in your true nature by Including these practices in your day-to-day life. A simple way to get started is to join a regular live yoga class where a certified teacher will include various yoga techniques to balance the earth element in a natural flow. 

What is the Earth Element

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