Definition: In its pure form, a colorless, odorless and tasteless gaseous substance; the region above the ground enveloping the earth; the atmosphere; the sky; a breeze or wind; personal bearing; a distinctive but intangible quality surrounding a person or thing; a succession of notes forming a distinctive sequence; medium for radio and television broadcasting.
Once thought to be one of the four elements by Empedocles, air is still considered a fundamental element in many traditions. In some shamanic traditions it is connected to the direction of East, and associated with spring and new beginnings. In other traditions, air is seen as connected to the breath of life, the nature of mind, communication, divine prana, and the Holy Spirit. Indeed, we can imagine that in the form of wind, air can carry away our troubles, blow away strife, and carry positive thoughts to those far away.
When we connect to the element air we naturally move into a place of boundlessness. Air carries particular combination of gases that sustains life. We come into this world with an indrawing of our first breath of life, and we exit with a final exhalation. Through our lives, as a way of increasing the space of our experience at any given moment, or to slow down or bring calm, we need only begin with the breath. Slow, deep and rhythmic breathing will often allow us to approach our center and be in the moment with more calm and ease.
Our language expresses our experience of air and our need for more or less of this element. For example, we may need to engage to a greater degree in the air element when we are overly engaged, contracted or too immersed. Here we may need to “come up for air”, need a “breath of fresh air”, or “air our grievances”. When we have too much air we may lack the practical energy that brings things to action, and we may be see as too airy, or we may even be seen as an “air head”. Other expressions that reflect how we may be experiencing the air element include: “putting on airs”, being “full of hot air”, or “vanishing into thin air”. Our experience of the air element suggests that there is the quality of space, fluidity, and lack of crystallization of something, as in the phrases “rumors in the air”, or when something is “up in the air”,.
If you have drawn this card, consider how the air element is affecting you. Do you need more space in your life? What would it take to create more space in your life? Do you need to pause and breathe? Perhaps you need a breath of fresh air, or conversely, there is too much air in your life. Is your life too much up in the air?
© 2011 Leslie Helen Bambic Ciechanowski
Every week I shuffle and draw a card to write about and represent the week ahead. If you would to like purchase or view the full deck visit www.fuzionhealingarts.com/products .