Happy week 2 of practice to you ~
Please continue to check in with the energy of your breasts, ovaries, and uterus each day and the invitation this week is to also add in the Microcosmic Orbit (small heavenly circulation) practice. Tune into the wheel at least once a day. Below is an image of the Neijing Tu for extra mystical inspiration for the wheel ~
I also invite you to read these two different perspectives on the 7 Year cycles for women – the first from the Huangdi Neijing (a Chinese medicine Classic over 2000 years old) and the second from Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés outlined in her book Women Who Run With the Wolves. I invite you to reflect on what stage of your life you may be in (regardless of age).
Women’s 7 Year Cycles from the Huangdi Neijing:
(*note that after outlining these cycles, it is revealed that if one aligns one’s life with the greater cycles and nourishes life through diet, lifestyle, and qigong practice, one can maintain youthful energy into old age.)
1 x 7, The Kidney energy becomes abundant, her baby teeth are replaced by permanent ones, and the hair grows.
女子七岁。 肾气盛，齿更发长； (7岁)
2 x 7, The dew of Heaven arrives (menstruation), the Ren channel begins to flow, the Chong channel is flourishing, the periods come regularly, and she can conceive.
3 x 7, Kidney Essence peaks, the wisdom teeth come out, and growth is at its utmost.
4 x 7, Tendons and bones become strong, the hair grows longest, and the body is strong and flourishing.
5 x 7, The Yang-ming channels begin to weaken, the complexion starts to wither, and the hair begins to fall.
6 x 7, The three Yang channels are weak, the face darkens, and the hair begins to turn gray.
7 x 7 , The Ren channel is empty, the Chong channel depleted, the dew of Heaven dries up, the Earth Passage (uterus) is not open, so weakness and infertility set in.
Women’s 7 Year Cycles from Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés in Women Who Run With the Wolves:
(*note that Dr. Estés adds that “These phases are not meant to be tied inexorably to chronological age, for some women at eighty are still in developmental young maidenhood, and some women at age forty are in the psychic world of the mist beings, and some twenty year olds are as battle scarred as long-lived crones. The ages are not meant to be hierarchical, but simply belong to women’s consciousness and to the increase of their soul-lives. Each age represents a change in attitude, a change in tasking, and a change in values”.)
0-7 age of the body and dreaming/socialization, yet retaining imagination
7-14 age of separating yet weaving together reason and the imaginal
14-21 age of new body/young maidenhood/unfurling yet protecting sensuality
21-28 age of new world/new life/exploring the worlds
28-35 age of the mother/learning to mother others and self
35-42 age of the seeker/learning to mother self/seeking the self
42-49 age of early crone/find the far encampment/giving courage to others
49-56 age of the underworld/learning the words and rites
56-63 age of choice/choosing one’s world and the work yet to be done
63-70 age of becoming watchwoman/recasting all one has learned
70-77 age of re-youthanization/more cronedom
77-84 age of the mist beings/finding more big in the small
84-91 age of weaving with the scarlet thread/understanding the weaving of life
91-98 age of the etherial/less to saying, more to being
98-105 age of pneuma, the breath
105+ age of timelessness