True alchemy of the human body goes beyond the anatomy we learned in eighth grade. The fundamental knowledge we’ve been given is limited to biological functions of body parts. There is a lot more to the interconnectedness of the body, mind, and our lives in general.
Each bodily part, particularly some of the major organs, plays a significant role in our overall anatomy. Sometimes the metaphysical role is more relevant than the biological one. Understanding the parallel role should elevate our awareness and cause us to pay closer attention and care to them.
Liver, Wood, Spring, Growth and Willpower
To understand the liver, we may observe and analyze the energy of the Wood element and all that it entails. Spring is explosive and growing. The seeds have latent energy waiting to sprout.
If you observe how trees grow, you will notice that no impediment can stand in their way. They will eventually find their way to the light.
The wood element governs the Liver. It is responsible for storing and purifying our blood. Blood circulates easily through our bodies when we are physically active. When we sleep, a large portion of our blood returns to the liver, where it is stored, cleansed, and rejuvenated.
The liver is essential for blood detoxification. Toxins and metabolic byproducts are isolated from the blood in the liver and either ejected through the bowels or retained in the liver, where they cannot harm other organs in the body. Chronic exposure to toxic substances can cause significant liver damage over time.
Cleansing the liver is an essential part of strengthening and optimizing its functionality.
We may easily express our creative ideas when the liver is balanced. A strong liver is responsible for self-motivation. The liver is where desires, the desire to become and evolve, are born.
When the liver is out of balance, the individual becomes depressed and lethargic.
The ‘honeymoon’ effect in a relationship is driven by the liver’s energy, the beginning of a new chapter in life. Any new undertaking or cycle originates with liver energy. Jupiter, which represents energy of growth and expansion and hence supports willpower, rules the liver.
Anger Management Through Liver Work
The liver’s worst enemy is anger. When the liver is blocked, creative energy is also impaired. We are creative beings. If we don’t let our frustrations, disappointments, and fury out, they will grow. Anger can either explode or implode, both of which are harmful to the liver.
Excessive ambition leads to dissatisfaction and resentment. The Daoist rule of 70% may be an effective remedy in this case. Moderation leads to a more balanced range of emotions, which further improves liver health. The liver governs muscular tension and controls the peripheral nervous system. When the liver fails, we become irritated or furious. Muscular tension occurs when the liver is toxic. Tension will develop in places where muscles are weaker.
Although the liver meridian does not flow directly through the neck area, Qi Gong practitioners believe that the liver also influences the neck. The gallbladder meridian, on the other hand, does, the gallbladder being the liver’s Yang partner.
Whenever the Liver is tensed (or heated), the gallbladder stores an overabundance of Yang energy, producing neck tension. Headaches and neck stiffness can sometimes be caused by liver and gallbladder imbalances.
Because the liver controls the peripheral nervous system, it has a direct impact on the eyes and, as a consequence, our vision. The liver also nourishes the tendons and ligaments. Tendons stiffen when liver energy decreases.
Ligament degeneration or injury is frequently caused by a weakened or diseased liver. Do you want to know how your liver is doing? Examine your finger and toe nails. If they are smooth, robust, and naturally shiny, your liver is in good shape.
Because heat damages the liver, it prefers to stay ‘cool.’ The liver’s natural tendency is to overheat, which may lead to hypertension, one of the major causes of fatal cardiovascular events globally.
Most drugs prescribed ‘for life’ to regulate blood pressure actually harm the liver, which is paradoxically one of the initial leading causes of blood pressure disorders.
The liver is considered the ‘seat of happiness’. If you really want to find true inner peace, start by taking care of your liver!
The Way of the Toxins
We often believe that the quality of the foods and beverages we consume is the only element that can introduce toxins into our bodies. Although we are generally correct, there are other ways that unwanted chemicals enter our bodies. One of these is through breathing. The air quality, particularly in toxic urban polluted environments, is not always great. Toxins can also enter our bodies through direct skin contact. Substances enter the body through soap, shampoo, hair coloring, tooth paste, and deodorant. Furthermore, if we wear clothes made of plastic, harmful compounds may enter our bodies.
Toxins, regardless of how they enter our bodies, will circulate through various parts of the body before reaching the blood. They will be digested, metabolized, and expelled from the body once they reach the bloodstream. Some will become trapped in the liver and gallbladder, which serve as the primary blood filters.
The liver, like any other filtration system, will lose efficiency over time due to an overload of impurities. That is why, just like an automobile oil filter, we must clean our filters on a regular basis. Otherwise, the engine will breakdown.
Detox Your Liver
The liver detox comes in a variety of forms. A different algorithm may be chosen depending on the time available, the seriousness of the problem, and how intensely one want to experience the detox.
I’ve chosen a basic recipe that you can try on your own.
Day 1 to 5
• No fried foods
• Consume unprocessed food with no preservatives (fresh veggies, fresh meat, fresh eggs, fresh fruits)
• Consume 75% of the usual amount. For example, you can skip dinner.
• Begin each morning with a glass of hot water on an empty stomach.
• Drink half a liter of apple juice between meals.
• Before going to bed, squeeze half a lemon, add the same amount of cold press virgin olive oil, and drink it.
• Perform a 5-minute qi gong routine for the liver at night (see below the routine)
Make sure you get enough sleep. Do not miss sleeping between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. These are the hours when the liver and gallbladder are most active.