Tuesday Column By VICTORIA NGOZI IKEANO
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Every household experiences varying degrees of illness at this time of the year in this part of the world. ‘It has to do with the weather which comes with the season’’, is the common refrain. In our part of the globe there are only two seasons – dry and rainy season unlike some other places that have four which are indeed considered as the normal pattern, namely spring, summer, autumn and winter. Each of these four seasons is associated with a certain temperament.They are similar to our life’s cycle here on earth that is divided into four phases. They are the childhood years (the care free period), the period of early adulthood ( when the individual is stepping into the world as an independent person with full responsibility), the phase of full adulthood when the individual is in full bloom as a human being, the action years so to speak; then old age during which phase the individual is winding down, the years when he/she begins to reflect on his/her past experiences and inwardly begins to prepare for the eventual separation of the spirit from the physical body a.k.a. death. At this stage of our life, we take on a phlegmatic temperament which best suits that last period of earthly life. The child has a sanguine temperament during childhood years, engendering the carefree characteristics in children while the stage of life when we are in full bloom of activities as full adults, the action years, is linked to the choleric temperament. You could say that the temperaments influence us.
The temperaments are brought about by our blood radiation. To wit, our blood radiation changes at various stages of our life. The blood radiation of a child is different from that of the aged or an adult. Each phase should be lived out accordingly. Children should be allowed to be children, being sanguine – let Junior play about, jump up and down, shout, chase after domestic animals and birds, etc, do not try to caution them to stop making noise or try to make them behave like adults. Leave them to their care free inclinations. To do otherwise is to deprive them of this necessary experience which would affect them one way or other. Late Michael Jackson the ace singer, from his childhood years was always with adults, mingling with them, etc. He did not really experience the ‘joy’ of childhood. As an adult he felt the gap inwardly, was never relaxed inwardly and he endeavoured to recreate childhood life in a mansion he bought, but he failed woefully in that regard because that stage of his earth life was gone forever, he could neither retrace his steps nor bring back the hands of the clock because as an adult he no longer has that sanguine nature/temperament which is peculiarly that of children. That missed step disoriented him somehow. Let children be children, they should not mingle about with adults for they do not belong in the place of adults… Thus there are broadly speaking four temperaments, notwithstanding that there are other classifications within each, nonetheless they are fundamentally four.
And the four seasons of autumn, spring, summer and winter conform to these four temperaments as can be observed in nature. In spring, there is a springing up; there is the season of the full blossom of fruits; the phlegmatic stage corresponds with winter. The seasons are the activities of the elements among others and the seasons which we generally refer to as the weather do affect our body. We have learnt to mitigate some of the ‘harsh’ effects of a particular season by literally wearing layers and layers of thick clothes to ward off the cold that comes during the rainy season and dressing lightly to lessen the heat of the dry season. Essentially, what we are trying to do is to create balance in our body because fundamentally, illness comes about when there is imbalance/disharmony in our body system and all the drugs we administer to our body at this time whether orthodox or herbal is to help recreate/restore the balance. Wherever there is disharmony or imbalance of whatever kind and wherever it may be – in our body system, home, work place, family, village, community country, nations – disturbances are bound to occur there, manifesting in various forms. We do not succeed entirely in preventing the ‘harsh’ effect of each season by our choice of apparel. Our wrong way of living that includes our lifestyle, eating habits, etc., all of which are not in accordance with the Laws of Nature, does not allow the body to attain the requisite balance that is needed for the coming season.
The various seasons are needed for our proper development and in the wise order of the Creator, Nature provides everything that we need to wade through the seasons undisturbed. For example, the fruits, herbs and other edibles that blossom at a particular season are meant to fortify our bodies for what the coming season brings to our body. Therefore, fruits, herbs, vegetables and other foods from nature should be consumed aplenty when they are in season that is when we get the most benefit from them. Consuming them when they are out of season is of little benefit to the body. Most of us eat junk, fast foods all year round. We often overcook our foods with much salt and monosodium glutamate (seasoning) in a bid to make them ‘sweeter”. But we commit an error in healthy living here. For most of us in the cities, the fruits we consume are ferried from the hinterlands unripe and are forcibly ripened by retailers with use of dangerous chemicals and then sold to us days after they initially received them. Such fruits are not helpful to our body. Fresh air is a necessary ingredient for keeping the needed harmony in our body for our proper development. It is given to us free of charge by Nature but mankind has polluted this essential free gift through its activities in the name of civilization so that the air we take in is no longer fresh as such, but ‘poisoned’ in many instances. Sitting outside for sometime in the cool ambience is also beneficial. However, in the name of modernity, our homes are now built in such a way that we spend most of our time indoors with air conditioners in homes and offices.
What about exercising our body to keep the necessary harmony in accordance with Creation’s law of movement? Modernity cum civilization is decreeing otherwise as we now ferry ourselves about in cars, buses and motorcycles even for short distances. Exercise does not wholly consist of furious running, furious jumping and the like. Walking is about the most natural exercise – everybody can walk; not forgetting sound sleep. We should work during the daytime and sleep/rest during night time as ordained.But many of us have reversed this in the rat race for material acquisitions. We flout the basic rules of hygiene of regularly washing our hands, boiling our drinking water to be sure it is germ-free, keeping our environment clean, etc. Is this out of ignorance or laziness? With all the aforementioned, is it any wonder that we are suffering ill health? Nature gives in full measure but we human beings have distorted almost everything thereby bringing about disturbances and disharmony. The weather is not to blame for the illnesses that come with each season. The blame lies squarely with us, human beings.