Dear Vicki: I’m a newlywed who recently started studying the five elements and I sure have a question about my husband. Dick and I have been together for a year and married three months ago. Based on what I’ve read, I really think Dick is a Fire. He’s funny and outgoing and laughs a lot. Plus, he loves attention and was practically manic this summer, he was so happy. But now that it’s fall, I’m wondering if he might be a Metal. He’s obsessed with getting the dead plants out of our garden, wants to have wills drawn up right away, and snapped at me yesterday for making his mom’s chili recipe in a different way. Could he have turned into a Metal because it’s fall? Signed, Snapped At In Sagamore
Dear Snapped At: The short answer is that we do not change elements with the seasons. Our primary affiliation stays the same all year (and our whole life). If your husband is a primary Fire, he will be a Fire in summer, fall, winter, and spring.
That said, the cosmic seasons certainly affect us. Fall will make us all a bit more Metal, just like spring will bring out our Wood energy, winter our Water energy, and summer our Fire energy. This means summer will make your Fire husband a bit more fiery, so Dick could be a ramped-up version of himself all summer long, which may or may not be a good thing. But once fall hits, he begins to settle down under the influence of Metal, which it sounds like you may not be enjoying these days. No worries, though, Dick’s Fire will never let him manifest too much Metal; it will always try to soften the edges and rules because Fire controls Metal.
The other elements also feel more Metal energy in the fall, but how this manifests depends on their relationship with Metal:
- My strong Wood need to make things happen will lessen slightly in the fall as the new yin aspect of Metal affects me. Plus, Metal controls Wood, so that slows me down some, too.
- A Water, on the other hand, will probably love fall because it builds to winter, Water’s full yin season (Metal feeds Water). Fall is also usually a blessed relief for Waters, an antidote to the crazy full yang of summer so foreign to them.
- Earths may find fall slightly depleting (Earth feeds Metal). Fall’s a busy time for Earths: gardens need to be harvested, fruits and vegetables need to be preserved, and school cycles start up again. Some Earths even view fall as the perfect time to begin early preparations for the holidays.
- And of course, Metals usually love fall; it’s their season! The chaos of summer is over and life returns to an orderly, more predictable, controlled pace.
Another way the cosmic seasons affect us is by providing energy opportunities throughout the year. Winter energy slows us down and, in true Water form, allows us to begin pondering the approaching new cycle. Other than winter sports, people do tend to engage in more quiet, low-key activities in the pure yin time of winter. Spring is about increased movement and manifestation, something that comes naturally to Woods. For people who don’t have a primary Wood affinity, the energy of spring is often the time they can accomplish something creative, even if it’s just cleaning a house (I suspect Wood energy is behind the concept of “spring housecleaning”). The active, fun energy of summer helps prompt us all to spend more time outside playing with friends and enjoying the beautiful weather. In that way we all use Fire energy to connect.
And finally, fall energy focuses on endings and letting go of what’s no longer needed. I think that’s what’s happening to Dick now. During this Metal time it makes sense that Dick feels compelled to clean out a garden and create a will. But Metal energy also focuses on perfection. Metals have seen the whole cycle, they know what worked and what didn’t, and they like to honor the best. If Dick thinks his mother’s chili was perfect the way she made it, then it’s not surprising he might have a slight Metal edge during fall and not want his chili any other way. But don’t worry. This will pass. In a few months it will be winter, a time of new beginnings. You might want to wait until them to try out new recipes or change a favorite old one.
And dear Snapped At, you don’t mention what element you think you are. However, the fact that Dick’s more Metal ways are bothering you during the Metal time of fall makes me suspect that you might be a Wood feeling somewhat threatened by so much Metal energy around her. If this is the case, try wearing hematite jewelry this fall. Hematite balances Metal energy anywhere and it might make you feel more comfortable until the leaves of Metal fall are finally left behind. Blessings to you!