Autumn Equinox

September 22 is the autumn equinox in the Northern hemisphere and the vernal equinox in the Southern hemisphere. The medical traditions of India and Tibet teach that the shift in seasons are a time of doshic imbalance and therefore a recommended time for cleansing. Spring and Fall cleanses are therefore among the most common times for cleansing. But first, what is an equinox? An equinox occurs when the Earth's equatorial plane passes through the center of the Sun, placing the center of the Sun directly above the equator. This is when day and night are of equal length--the still-point of the energy of nature, as it shifts to another seasonal phase. 

As the Sun's position relative to the Earth changes, the flow of life-energy in our bodies change. This especially affects our agni, the fire of life, the most concrete manifestation of which is the digestive fire. As the digestive fire fluctuates during the seasonal shift, it is common to experience digestive troubles as the physiology re-acclamates to a new arrangement of energetic patterns. At this time, the doshas are temporarily in a unique state of flux. This is why equinoxes are a good time to lighten the diet and allow the digestive fire to reset before it develops a pathological momentum. 

The Autumn equinox is often associated with the dry, light, and rough qualities of Vata. But we should also remember that this is a season when any of the excess Pitta we have accumulated over the Summer will start to overflow. If this is the case, it is common to experience rashes in the Fall season as the excess Pitta begins to eliminate itself through the skin. It is therefore especially important during this seasonal transition to maintain an alkalizing diet. 

Astrologically, the Autumn equinox signifies the Sun's entry into Libra, its sign of Debilitation. Our digestive fire will not be strong during this time which means that we should not overburden it. Eat lightly with appropriate gaps between meals, giving the digestive fire enough space to re-ignite itself. Eating plenty of greens during this time will maintain alkalinity, detoxification, and rejuvenate the digestive fire. Mars-Ketu conjunction in Aquarius will keep things fiery, especially with the Full Moon in Aries on September 24. It is certainly a fiery start to the Fall season, so Pitta types need to take care of themselves. Vata imbalances can also be on the rise during the windy season, so this is a time to maintain harmonious and regular routines. The more we keep our inner winds in balance, the less affected we will be by the outer winds. This can also be a great time to take some of the classic Vata-balancing herbal formulas (contact me for more information). 

Fasting, cleansing, and all means of re-calibrating one's consciousness are recommended during this time. The seasonal shift is a psycho-physical shift, a time to adjust and adapt ourselves to nature's flow and thereby maintain our healthy and vitality for another seasonal phase. Those who are interested in an approach to cleansing or who are looking for advice as they settle into the new season can contact me via my website. I am still doing Ayurvedic consultations, but in the context of medical astrological readings.