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Metal Element

Hidden Treasures of Our True Nature

Metal Element in Autumn gives us space to acknowledge the preciousness of life and the hidden treasures within. (John Kirkwood) Transported by the lung and large intestine meridians, metals ultimate gift is in helping us to be present with our true nature.

Nature of Metal

The color of the metal element is white, which can be seen in nature by the space created from leaves falling from trees.

After the intense brightness, heaviness and heat of late summer, this change in light and cooling in the air, gives relief. It heralds a letting go and the beginning of the yin downward movement within the cycle of the Tao.

At a physical level the Metal Element supports health of the organs of lung and large intestine, thus plays an important role in respiration and digestion. Exhaling from the lungs and excreting from the large intestine represent the letting go quality of metal. The health of the skin is also implicated due to its important role of perspiration. Metal Element facilitates the process of letting go, reducing or removing the things we do not need, in order to preserve and keep what is essential to life.

Of all the organs the skin and lungs have direct contact with the outside world, and form the first line defense against invasion of pathogens.

The predominant emotion of Metal Element is grief. Grief is a complex mixture of feelings experienced differently within each person and over time.

Given the complexities of grief, it is perhaps more helpful to focus on the feeling of sadness that arises from a sense of loss. John Kirkwood

Throughout life we all experience loss in different forms. Loss of belongings, valued roles, physical health, friendships and even loss of attainment in our life goals. With each of these is a process of letting go and forming new attachments. Imbalances in metal element will manifest where there is difficulty holing on (yin) or letting go (yang).

Gifts of Metal

Autumn is a time to nurture your true nature. Some of the gifts of Metal enjoyed when in balance are acceptance, non-attachment, acknowledgement, valuing, sacredness and instinct.

5 Life Activities to cultivate balance in Metal Element

  1. Eat white colored foods support the Metal Element such as cauliflower, turnips, garlic, onions, leek, mushrooms. White foods have the quality of building your immunity which is necessary in preparation for the colder months ahead in winter.

  2. Establish a meditation routine or introduce breath awareness in your day.

  3. Be present in your daily activities. Mindfully pay attention to what is happening outside of you, (what you can see, hear, feel, smell and taste) and inside of you (your body sensation, thoughts and feelings).

  4. Find balance in the doing for being you.

  5. Declutter and honestly examine what you are attached to – objects, routines, habits, thoughts, beliefs, rules and judgements

Welcome your Sacredness with Metal

When we allow ourselves to be transported by the presence of Nature we are mesmerized, like watching the last drop of light fall beyond the horizon as the sunsets. This is the quality that Metal brings into your life. Being fully present in spacious ground of beingness.


Kirkwood , J (2016) The Way of the Five Seasons. Singing Dragon: UK

Written by Sasha Wray Occupational Therapist, Naturopath, 5 Elements Acupressure Practitioner and Teacher. Sasha has a special interest in women’s health, pain care and mental health concerns. With 30 years experience her passion is to help people live well.

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