Friday, January 29, 2016

A comparison of the thought processes of the different elements

Each element will think in its own particular way.  Metal will speedily resolve issues in its mind, cutting its way through thickets of thought which may hold up two other elements, Fire and Water.  It will think things through at a measured pace, ensuring that its conclusion and the verbal expression of this conclusion has only been taken after careful consideration, with none of the sense of haste which Wood can show.  This is so unlike the long dwelling upon things which Earth will need to indulge in if it is to fulfil its role as the profound processor of all thought.  Wood will want to reach a conclusion rapidly, making its mind up quickly, perhaps too quickly, and sticking to its conclusion often despite evidence to the contrary.   Water will be reluctant to allow anything to impede its need for its thoughts to flow, but may be hesitant in expressing these thoughts, perhaps often preferring to keep its thoughts to itself.  Fire, particularly Inner Fire, with its concentrated attention to the needs of the Heart, will try to ensure that any decisions it takes are appropriate for the Heart, and are made as quickly as possible to ensure that the protective cover it gives the Heart is maintained. 

A clear difference between the thought processes of Earth and Metal was revealed to me to me on a day when I happened to treat an Earth patient followed immediately by a Metal patient.  I became aware that I was moving from a room in which a patient was almost obsessively concerned with repeating a story she had already told me several times to a room with a totally silent patient, who left it to me to start the verbal interaction between us.  The comparison between the two was very stark and very illuminating, and probably gave me some of the most memorable insights into the differing qualities of the two elements.  I could see that Earth needed me to listen and understand.  It wanted to be heard, and would not be satisfied with simply telling me of an incident in its life, but had to repeat it several times in case I did not hear it properly.  Metal, on the other hand, far from wanting me to hear the processes by which it had reached a conclusion, only wanted to impart the conclusion it had come to quietly by itself in the least number of words possible.  It presented me with a complete episode, leaving unspoken the process by which it had reached this conclusion.  It was interested only in the finished product.  One could say it allowed its mother element, Earth, to do the preliminary processing work, whilst it waited to complete the action, to finalize the thought.

In each case, the speaker, here my patient, was demanding different things from me, the listener, and since these different demands reflected characteristics typical of each element, this could be used as another helpful pointer to a patient’s element.  Of course these individual characteristics can become exaggerated the more out of balance a patient is, and less obvious the more balanced a patient is.



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