Posted by: medica...the healing arts, LLC | August 29, 2012

Indian Summer

It seems to happen all at once.  But there is no mistaking the crisp air, the smell of decaying leaves, and the pale, blue sky with little or no clouds.   You step outside and suddenly the fullness of Summer has come to a sharp point.  You can feel Autumn.

We often regret the passing of Summer.  It seems to pass by quickly.  But before we dive into the preparations of Autumn, there is a season that lingers in the in-between time.

Indian Summer.

In ancient systems of belief and healing, Indian Summer is considered a season all to itself.  According to some, it is the fulcrum of the year.  Some consider it to be the perfect balance of energy and time.  It is a time when the Fire of Summer burns down to transition into the balancing energy of Earth.  It is a time when neither Yin nor Yang hold the power.  Indian Summer is the time of year when all things come to balance.  It is fitting that Libra should be a part of this time of year.  Her scales reminding us of the balance that is being created.

Indian Summer is connected to the stomach, the spleen and the pancreas.  If Earth is unbalanced in your system, you will more than likely experience digestion problems at this time of the year.  IBS, diverticulitis, ulcers, upset stomach, acid reflux and more seem to become a health issue.  An example of Earth being out of balance is if you are not grounded in your lifestyle or beliefs.  Another is if you do not have a solid opinion or regard of yourself.  Or if you have been chaotic in your lifestyle and choices over the past few months.  Erratic behaviors and emotional roller coasters – that sort of thing.   All of these are considered Earth imbalances and they have direct influence over your digestion.  Almost as to say, “I don’t have the stomach anymore for what you are doing.  Or, I am sick to my stomach about what you are doing.”

This is a time of transition.  You need to keep balance and start establishing a calmer and more structured lifestyle.  We see experience this as children return to school and we shift into a more structured living schedule.  This seems to happen effortlessly as we give way to the physical activities of Summer and move more into the mental or psyche processes of Autumn.  This part of the year offers you the chance to slow the fast pace of Summer down.  It gives you more opportunities to find a quiet moment or two where you  can stop, pause, breathe deeply and calm yourself.

Indian Summer gives us that last chance to gather.  It is a time when we are reaping what we have sown.  All the time and thoughts you have put into your plans for the year are about to be yours.  In Spring, you burst through with excitement, new energy and ideas.  In Summer, you expanded and let your Spirits be free to play.  You gathered energy from the sunshine and the fullest of live.  And now, as you are being asked to give way to this and concentrate yourself more inwardly, Indian Summer reminds you there will be another time to play.  As you search to achieve this balance and transition, you are susceptible to imbalances of the spleen. The spleen during this transition can cause you to become stubborn, obsessive, and obstinate.  It can make you refuse to see other people opinions.   I have often thought it is a bad idea to hold elections around this time of the year.  The spleen regulates the memory, your ability to form opinions and willpower.  If you have imbalances of the spleen during Indian Summer it can cause you to become anxious, dis-empowered and forgetful.

Likewise, you will need to modify your diet. Now is the time to tone your diet and prepare for the colder months. It is appropriate to add slightly more protein to your diet.  Reduce your intake of cold, raw vegetables.  Steaming, blanching or baking in parchment paper will add the necessary heat to help you warm into Autumn.  These methods of preparing vegetables can be kept to a minimum so as not to lose the vital nutrients raw vegetables offer.  Soups are a great way to reap the last offerings of your garden while adding warmth to you digestive system. Prepare your stock and herbs until robust and add vegetables at the very end of preparation.  This offers a warm, nutrient packed meal for Autumn.

Traditional Ayurvedic medicine advises to pay particular attention to your diet during this time of transition.  When your mind and body are working towards achieving balance, it is a good idea to provide a balanced diet.  Warming the body with heated oils and massage is also helpful.  This is especially necessary if your energy has been drained from you during the day.  Perhaps you can incorporate into your home care regime,  the practice of massaging your hands, arms, legs and stomach before retiring.  Using a hydrating lotion to massage your face at night will not only offer you s calming moment, but also keep your face look fresh and youthful.   It is important to wear clothing layers during Indian Summer.  This keeps the chill of the mornings and evenings off your skin, but still allows you to soak up the warmth of the Sun during mid-day.

Enjoy Indian Summer.  Let it be of help and benefit to you.  It is a great marker for when you should be getting more settled and peaceful.  It lets you enjoy the last few days when it feels like Summer.  It is refreshing, inspiring and toning all at the same time. 

Indian Summer is the most beneficial time of year.  It is as the world could be.  No one thing over-powering another.  No one force more important than another.  Balance.   When life is balanced, less energy is needed to achieve great things.

Visit again next Sunday!

Sunday’s blog:  The Autumn Diet


  1. pretty good post. i just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that i have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. lista de email lista de email lista de email lista de email lista de email

    • Thank you Lista for your comment. I am starting up a series on Spring; activating your immune system; weight reduction and how to get the most out of the coming months.

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