Herbs and Practices for Autumn with Tahnee & Mason Taylor (EP#111)

by Alexandra Anttilla March 31, 2021 36 mins read

Tahnee-Mason-Taylor-Podcast

 

We have Tahnee and Mason jumping on the podcast today, delving into the season of Autumn - Lung Metal time with all the essentials on the best practices and herbs to support our Lungs, digestion, Qi, and protective Wei Qi as we descend into these cosier months. In the tradition of Chinese medicine the Lung is paired with the Large Intestine, so not only is this a season to focus on breath, letting go, and cutting away what is no longer needed, it's also a time to direct energy towards digestion. Tahnee and Mason dive into the foods for this season to best nourish digestion and the cathartic process of digesting, assimilating and, releasing experiences in this last cycle of seasons. 

 

As the air cools down and we observe Mother Nature contracting into her next rhythm, we find ourselves in a macro/micro reflection, naturally being pulled to go within. With wisdom and nurturing truth, Tahnee and Mason encourage us to fall into this space of transformation, exhale the high energy of warmer months, condense our Yin energy and support ourselves through daily practices that allow what is no longer needed to fall away. Tune in for soul nourishing knowledge.

  

Tahnee and Mason discuss:

  • Specific protective herbs to cultivate and maintain Qi & Wei Qi.
  • Supporting and regulating Qi in the body.
  • Supporting Yin energy.
  • The qualities of Metal energy.
  • The importance of seasonal living.
  • Herbs to support the Lungs and Kidneys.
  • Herbs and practices to prepare the body for Winter.
  • The medicine that comes through evolving with the seasons.
  • Physical exercises to support Lung Metal energy.
  • Breathwork, meditation, and practices for introspection.
  • Foods, herbs, and tips for hydration and fluid regulation in this Yin cultivating season.

 

Tahnee and Mason Taylor

Tahnee and Mason Taylor are the CEO and founder of SuperFeast (respectively). Their mission with SuperFeast is to improve the health, healing, and happiness of people and the planet, through sharing carefully curated offerings and practices that honour ancient wisdom and elevate the human spirit. Together Tahnee and Mason run their company and host the SuperFeast podcast, weaving their combined experience in herbs, yoga, wellness, Taoist healing arts, and personal development with lucid and compelling interviews from all around the world. They are the proud parents of Aiya and Goji, the dog, and are grateful to call the Byron Shire home.

 

Tahnee Taylor

Tahnee Taylor is the CEO of SuperFeast and has been exploring health and human consciousness since her late teens. From Yoga, which she first practiced at school in 2000, to reiki, herbs, meditation, Taoist and Tantric practices, and human physiology, her journey has taken her all over. This journey continues to expand her understanding and insight into the majesty (that is) the human body and the human experience. Tahnee graduated with a Journalism major and did a stint in non-fiction publishing (working with health and wellness authors and other inspiring creatives), advertising, many jobs in cafes, and eventually found herself as a Yoga teacher. Her first studio, Yoga for All, opened in 2013, and Tahnee continues to study Yoga with her teachers Paul + Suzee Grilley and Rod Stryker. She learned Chi Nei Tsang and Taoist healing practices from Master Mantak Chia. Tahnee continues to study herbalism and Taoist practices, the human body, women's wisdom, ancient healing systems, and is currently enrolled in an acupuncture degree and year-long program with The Shamanic School of Womancraft. Tahnee is the mother of one, a 4-year old named Aiya.

 

Mason Taylor

Mason Taylor is the founder of SuperFeast. Mason was first exposed to the ideas of potentiating the human experience through his mum Janesse (who was a big inspiration for founding SuperFeast and is still an inspiration to Mason and his team due to her ongoing resilience in the face of disability). After traveling South America for a year, Mason found himself struggling with his health - he was worn out, carried fungal infections, and was only 22. He realised that he had the power to take control of his health. Mason redirected his attention from his business degree and night work in a bar to begin what was to become more than a decade of health research, courses, education, and mentorship from some of the leaders in personal development, wellness, and tonic herbalism. Inspired by the own changes to his health and wellbeing through his journey (which also included Yoga teacher training and raw foodism!), he started SuperFeast in 2010. Initially offering a selection of superfoods, herbs, and supplements to support detox, immune function, and general wellbeing. Mason offered education programs around Australia, and it was on one of these trips that he met Tahnee, who is now his wife and CEO of SuperFeast. Mason also offered detox and health transformation retreats in the Byron hinterland (some of which Tahnee also worked on, teaching Yoga and workshops on Taoist healing practices, as well as offering Chi Nei Tsang treatments to participants). After falling in love with the Byron Shire, Mason moved SuperFeast from Sydney's Northern Beaches to Byron Bay in 2015. He lived on a majestic permaculture farm in the Byron hinterland, and after not too long, Tahnee joined him (and their daughter, Aiya was conceived). The rest is history - from a friend's rented garage to a warehouse in the Byron Industrial Estate to SuperFeast's current home in Mullumbimby's beautiful Food Hub, SuperFeast (and Mason) has thrived in the conscious community of the Northern Rivers. Mason continues to evolve his role at SuperFeast, in education, sourcing, training, and creating the formulas based on Taoist principles of tonic herbalism.

 

Resources:

Tremella
Astragalus
Qi Blend
Reishi
Cordyceps
Mason's Mushrooms

  

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Check Out The Transcript Here:

 

Tahnee: (00:00)

Hi, everybody, Mason and Tahnee here, we're here to talk with you about the autumn herbs that we love. We wanted to share with you some of the tonics that we would use in this season, helping to sort of regulate the qi of the season, which relates to the lung organ in the body, which is also paired with the large intestine in Chinese medicine. And this is the metal element. So it's really a lot to do with letting go. It's a lot to do with our breath and our digestion. It's a lot to do with being able to assimilate all of the beauty and the gifts and the accomplishments that we've made over the last cycle of life. And then to sort of let go of anything we don't need as we move into the winter months.

Tahnee: (00:44)

So it's a time unlike summer were we're all out there and excited and active. It's a time more of coming in, the cooling and condensing yin energy. So we really want to support that, we want to support our yin as best we can at this time. And so a lot of the herbs that we'll work with in this season will kind of support not just the lung, but also the kidney energy as well, as we transition toward the winter months. Do you want to chat a little bit about what we have here?

Mason: (01:12)

Yeah, it's just such a, bringing up, moving into winter, I just think it's always, for me, the value of autumn when I put it in context of the entire year, but especially the fact that we're going into winter and preparing for that time. Always being aware of the season that you're in is going to end and lead into another period and they all weave in and work in together. And if the lungs can be nice and vibrant and healthy, metal attracts water, that's going to descend down, become the yin of the body. I mean, if you're tired and exhausted and need more foundational essence, it's a really good thing to just tune into what Tans were saying then about letting go and supporting that lung tube. But yeah, what are you diving in to? I know you can't see them, but I think we brought astragalus, chi, reishi, cordyceps, Mason's mushrooms.

Tahnee: (02:02)

Yeah. Well, I mean, qi was the one that you put together, but we sort of chatted about the intention behind that. And when we look at what we are working on, when we're talking about chi, the lungs are really this capacity of the body to bring in qi from the air. Yes, there's also oxygen and CO2 and nitrogen, all these things coming in, but really when we look at the ancient traditions, breath is all about chill or prana. So we're trying to capacitate the body to store and condense as much energy into the body as possible. So yeah, like Mason was saying, when it's this time of year, you want to be resting more and you really probably want to amp up those self-care practises. There's a saying, and I think it's in the Suwen where it's like, "In summer you can get away with a lot more than you can in autumn and winter."

Tahnee: (02:47)

You just have to be a bit more careful and a bit more mindful. So that's why we would start to use those more protective herbs at this time. So chi, if you think about what qi is, qi is that life force that moves through the body, but it's also exists in different forms within the body. And we don't want to get too technical here, but there's a type of qi called wei chi, which is your surface immunity. Or I think of it more as your defence field. If you can imagine that you have a protective shell of energy around you and we've all felt what it feels like when that gets infiltrated, usually by things that travel, or lots of people, those kinds of things. Or when we just burn ourselves out. qi is sort of when we work on the wei chi, we're aiming to expand that barrier, I guess. An energetic barrier that we have, which protects us against energetic invasion and also physical, which can also correlate that to energetic viruses, bacteria, these kinds of things that try and get into the body.

Tahnee: (03:45)

And they're only getting if there's a pathway in. So one of the things that we do with preventative medicine is try to prevent that pathway from existing. And so most people do find that if they aren't taking care of themselves, they will get sick when the seasons change. And that's because the qi becomes really unsteady and our bodies are unable to handle that, and so we get unwell. Similarly through autumn and into winter, if we aren't maintaining that self-care practise and that ability to sort of maintain our healthy chi, then we are going to get weaker and more prone to infections and those kinds of things. So you don't have to get sick in winter. In fact in an ideal world, you wouldn't, so that's what these things are fun. So I love qi at this time of year, it has astragalus in it. It has a bunch of other herbs that support the spleen as well. Maybe you want to talk a little bit about your intention with putting together chi?

Mason: (04:38)

It's been a really appropriate blend for the previous season, being that of the earth, but even more so now in autumn. Even though these herbs are supporting that transformation of qi through to explain and what you eat, and then through what you breathe to become your nutritive qi that gets into your organs. But as Tanie is saying, if you can think lungs being the metal, I kind of also... It's energetic. Sometimes I feel like when my qi is getting strong, that regulatory qi that runs just underneath the surface of the skin and then can energetically push out. It creates this big metal shield. And that is what comes about through having strong lung qi and a capacity to transform the wei qi through what you breathe in. So through having astragalus as the one of the top herbs in there with the other beautiful lung herbs, white atractylodes, codonopsis, bringing in the Turkey Tail as well.

Mason: (05:34)

The intention was to support through fluid regulation, as well as a number of other functions, is to just simply cultivate qi within the lung through supporting that lung system in transforming between the yin and yang energy. And that is all you need to be doing is capacitating the lung organ through herbs, through living appropriately with the seasons, so everything's, as Tans was saying, it's starting to descend now a little bit. So you start getting a little less intense with the way that you're living. It's not so much fiery summer vibes. And if you do that, you cultivate that qi in through the lung, you create that shield, life feels all a little bit better. And so the qi herbs are funnily the ones that the Taoists will take constantly. They'll never stop them. And so you can see a reishi's in there as well. But astragalus' one of those top ones that they will say, "I just never stop." Because you never stopped wanting that strong, qi cultivation in through your organs and that shield, but this is the season.

Mason: (06:42)

And it's amazing how everyone, when the amount of hundreds, it must be thousands at this point, people who kind of clock on to taking qi herbs now. It's probably the one that's the easiest one for people to relate to because people really want to prepare for winter and fortify themselves. And so the biggest transformation of realising, "Ah, sometimes if I take herbs appropriately for the season, I see this huge change months down." That's probably, taking qi herbs in autumn is probably the one that will create the biggest perception, and people will see how you can transform your life if you get onto the herbs at the right time.

Tahnee: (07:23)

Yeah. And I mean, that's similar to why the mushrooms work so well as well though. A lot of them have, we were talking about the treasures in Taoism, so you're looking at Jin, Qi & Shen, and a lot of the mushrooms are triple treasure herbs. So they work on all three at the same time, or they will have sort of one or two really strong correlations or functions. So something like Mason's mushrooms is going to have things like reishi and cordyceps in there, which support lung function. And when we're supporting also the flow of the qi in the body, so Mason was talking about the spleen before, the lung and the spleen work really closely together.

Tahnee: (07:59)

So they're basically producing the qi that powers our body, and that's called true human qi in Daoism, in the translation obviously, and that relationship between healthy digestion and healthy assimilation and then healthy breathing. And then the ability for our bodies to be powered by that, that stops us from drawing from our reserves, stops us draining our Jing. So you'll see a lot of the time in the West, people breathe very shallow, there's not a diaphragmatic breath. You can hear Aria in the background. And so what we're aiming for in this season is to really prioritise a nice deep, expensive breath and supporting the body with this lung herbs. So Mason's is another one that we would recommend all the time, but we would also really specially look at it in these kinds of seasons where we want to build immunity and we want to start thinking about storing chi. So just like a squirrel is going to bury his acorns in autumn so he has something old for winter time. We're kind of looking to do the same thing in ourselves.

Tahnee: (09:03)

So it's something that I think is a really important thing to consider when we're thinking about seasonal living is, "All right, yes. So maybe you have been able to express and dream and vision in spring time, I've done that sort of party expression, joy thing in summer, and spent my late summer harvesting and assimilating and digesting everything. And now we're coming down into autumn." It's like, "Let go of what we don't need, focus on rest and prioritising our self-care and turning into these techniques and traditions that have this support for us." So this is where our herbal practise, for me, would really ramp up. In somewhere, I might be a bit loose with my herbs every day, in autumn, no looseness. Like, I'm on. And we'll be doing breathing practises, and you are supposed to sleep more so you maybe won't be waking up as early, but you'll maybe try and use those early morning hours to do breathing practises. And so Mason's got some other videos that we can share them, we can share some Pranayama and things like that, but that's something you want to bring in. And you'll notice it, if you're taking qi herbs, doing the breathing practises, working the upper body, you'll really noticed a shift shifted this time of year. We've also got cordyceps there, I think?

Mason: (10:26)

Yeah, it's just here.

Tahnee: (10:26)

So, do you want to talk about cordy?

Mason: (10:26)

Yeah, I was just, everything you said then has given me a bunch of insights. The preparation time you put in now, like the squirrel getting the acorns, means that if you let go of the summer energy, because there's also mourning going on within the grief within the lungs, and if you can successfully let go of the summer, you don't waste your grieving energy on grieving for summer. You can actually go and grieve the things that you're appropriately ready to let go off and have that beautiful experience of letting go and then the potential for new life to come through. The herbs support us with doing that. But with cordyceps, I was just thinking, what a lot of people do is hold onto that summer. And so you might feel the association that you have to cordyceps still being one of fire and wanting to feel your endurance and the capacity and the yang elements of your workout being potentiated.

Mason: (11:18)

Now we still work out in autumn, but you'll find that what will come forth as a quality is one that's less of complete activation. We're starting to actually just to descend, and so we're going for quality, not quantity. And so with the cordyceps, you will see the taking of cordyceps maybe the focus won't therefore be on you getting maximum output, but you'll take cordyceps and and have like a deepening of the quality of your breath practise. You might want to go a little bit more inside rather than looking at what you're outputting externally. You want to see what you can perceive and what capacity you're increasing internally through taking cordyceps during this time. And that could be really transformational. Doesn't mean that it doesn't actually help with endurance and your power and all those kinds of things.

Mason: (12:09)

It still absolutely does. And I've got a couple of friends actually, who are working on going for the CrossFit Games right now. And for them, it can still bring forward the qualities, but they're definitely focused on output. So it's make your own adventure, but just dip into that methodical metal energy that's there right now. That's just a bit more like I just said, standing solid and going a little bit more inside. And so if you can apply that intention to when you're taking your cordyceps, I think you might find you get even more output when you get around to those points like spring and summer next year, you'll find you've actually gone next level.

Tahnee: (12:54)

I think that's interesting. Because I often used to talk to shift workers when I taught yoga and they'd be like, "Oh, I can't live with the circadian rhythm because I work at night." And it's like, "Okay, but that's fine, you still need to have rhythm." So what humans thrive on, we're really animals at the end of the day, we are attached to this cyclical nature of the earth and how we're rotating around the sun and you know, this galaxy and the universe and all of these things. There's this kind of cycle that exists within everything on this planet, from the cells and the atoms in the body all the way up to the macrocosm. So if you're training for CrossFit games right now, and it's not a time for you to rest, you're still going to emphasise your kidney energy because that's sort of the foundation and the place where the metal is going to pour itself into.

Tahnee: (13:47)

And you're also going to at some point have time where you slow down and accumulate qi and allow everything to gather back in and the way in which the sort of concept of metal is expressed in the Daoist tradition is this sort of bowl that they used to have on the top of the mountains that all the dew would condense onto and they would capture the precious water from that. And this idea that the lungs being the sort of roof of the organs in the body, right up high, let's forget about the brain for a second, and they allow the qi to condense down into the kidneys and we can store that for our sort of next phase of development and growth and evolution.

Tahnee: (14:25)

This idea that we're kind of constantly on a spiral of evolution. This is really what we need to remember to have in our lives. So if you're someone who travels a lot, air hostesses that would always be in different time zones and it's like, "Fine, but you still need to have these phases of life where you slow down, condense, assimilate, use a kind of discernment." Like when Mason's saying that methodical nature of metal, metal is like the sword, right? It can cut and it can be incredibly discerning, and it can say, "No, enough's enough. That's too much, whatever, grief." Again, what Mason's talking about, you might start working with qi and kind of long herbs and suddenly have repressed memories come up. And that's not a bad thing, that's stored in your body as an energetic imprint and if it's moving, well that's something that we would typically say is good, right?

Tahnee: (15:18)

As long as you have the space in the container to feel that, and that's why there's this invitation to slow down and start turning within, which is what yin is all about. It's about the slow kind of feminine dark aspect, the inner aspect, that interiority. As opposed to yang being all of the expression and the outward, and it's about everybody else, it's not about me. So that's the invitation of this energy. So you might be watching this in springtime and feel a calling to that, and that's fine. You're leaning into an intuitive sort of sense of needing to be held in that way. And one thing our acupuncturist used to always say is, if you haven't been living with the seasons, and let's face it, even those of us that are aware of this, aren't perfect, it takes a while.

Tahnee: (16:03)

It takes a while for your system and your lifestyle to adapt to these ideas. It's not something that happens overnight. And he used to always say, "To even say that you're living with the seasons you have to live perfectly through at least one cycle. At least one year of full living to really even understand what you're starting to talk about." So I think it's a really interesting thing to start to feel into and explore. And as you start to learn about the stuff, you work with the herbs, they sort of bring out these experiences in here. And it's for me, such a powerful medicine, and I think like Mason's saying in another video, I think we were talking about our culture's just disassociated from nature, we've lost that. And this is a way to sort of regain some sovereignty and some deep connection to the source of life, which is the sun, the earth, the stars, the [inaudible 00:17:00], and all the other plants and animals around us.

Mason: (17:02)

Hmm, beautiful.

Tahnee: (17:04)

Anything else you want to say?

Mason: (17:07)

I might just finish off. I didn't bring any tremella, but tremella mushroom is just the final very-

Tahnee: (17:13)

Ah, it's tremella.

Mason: (17:13)

I mean, yeah, tremella just sits on a mantle in our kitchen.

Tahnee: (17:21)

We just have like a kilo of it, so it's not very attractive.

Mason: (17:21)

At all times. Just a beautiful nutritive, these are all food grade herbs, but tremella's like very much a food. So you can have more of it than most herbs. Very lubricating for the stomach, but very lubricating for the lungs, so if you do find yourself, it's a very dry season. And so this is why a lot of, there's Poria and white atractylodes helping to regulate fluids in the body through this spleen, and the lung does a lot of regulation of the fluid. And so ideally if you're healthy and not being an air hostess, that's different. If you're up in a dry environment like that all the time, ideally you can get through without getting any dryness coming up in your skin, which isn't bad if it does come up. If so, just focus on your hydration, but then that's where those qi herbs and then tremella can come in at another layer to bring some really beautiful hydration to your lungs and therefore your skin.

Tahnee: (18:20)

Yeah. Normally the lung correlates to the skin, to the sort of nose region as well. So we're kind of going to be seeing things expressing through there if there's imbalances, so like Mason's saying, if you're starting to notice that skin's drying out it is a good chance to look at how much you're burning through your energy and your chi. Could be that you need to rest more, hydrate more, take herbs like tremella. Be a good chance to see a practitioner and have a chat about what's going on for you. So yeah, if you're interested in more of this stuff, we're going to have more content coming.

Mason: (18:54)

Yeah, just subscribe, like, share, do all the things. The more you guys do that and the more you guys comment and let us know how you're finding this information, the deeper we will go, and I think everyone will benefit from that. But you know, if you want us to just shut up and say, "Take adaptogens!" You can let us know that as well, but we'll probably delete it. Joking! We're all laughing.

Mason: (19:23)

Hi everybody, let's go through some basic tips and ways to get in the flow with this season, with the autumn energy. The reason we are doing this is because when we are being exactly considerate, this is what the Daoist said, you got to be considerate of where the earth is in relation to the sun and the moon. And the way that we can get direct perception of such a macro concept is what's going on in the seasons. And we can emulate, and it's not even emulating, it's just going to where our body wants to go. And so by doing these little simple things, there's definitely ways that we can unpack each of these and go deep and personalise them as well, they're quite general. But by doing this, we are ensuring we're supporting the lung metal qi to cultivate and transform through that entire lung organ system.

Mason: (20:14)

When that happens, life gets a lot easier. Now, yes, but stop thinking about your 80, 90 year old self. The seasons allow us to go and enjoy the seasonality of ourselves, so there might be qualities here of this lung season, where you might just be a lung person. You might be methodical and tend towards being melancholy and all these kinds of things. You're rigid, it's hard for you to change, you're a perfectionist. We've all got an element of that there within ourselves, it might not be what's dominant for me, it's not completely dominant, but I really relate to this season. It's like absolute medicine for me as I'm such a creative open person. And sometimes it's hard for me to come back down to earth. For me it's definite medicine, but for everyone, we get to enjoy the seasonality of our emotions and ourselves and the process that it takes to evolve ourselves, so that when we get to 80, 90 years old, hopefully we've become elders who have earned the right to pass on our wisdom to those who are younger.

Mason: (21:16)

But it starts here and now, so the first one is really just getting into the general energy, you want to make sure that you're not really attached and holding onto that summer energy. And that's quite often, I know here in Australia, everyone's just, we think we've got a two second little winter and it's just like, "All right, this is just a space holder until we get back to the warmer months." But you know, really stepping into it and embracing of the fact that things are starting to cool down, days are a little bit shorter and just letting go. Summer is done. It's gone, let's accept that. And that's what this season is all about. We start very quickly there, then we can get actually into the reality that we are in autumn and we're in a yin descending energy.

Mason: (22:04)

Accepting that, embracing that. Then you're going to be able to get into the beautiful cleaning and dirty work that... I say dirty work because we are letting go here in this season. And it's not just a letting go. This is our first tip, getting into this energy, allowing this to come into presence in the way that you're designing your lifestyle, the way your practise looks, is getting into this letting go energy. But it's not always just an ambiguous, "Oh, I'm just going to let go of whatever there is that I don't need." That's an element, and we're constantly doing that with the breath, and as we do that, we're kind of chopping away some and taking on a big rug of perfectionism or unrealistic expectation or excessive judgement of ourselves that isn't really being useful for our capacity to perceive our own intrinsic value, and that's what we're looking for here.

Mason: (22:59)

But remember this metal, it's precise and it's not ambiguous. And so you'll consciously take that chef's knife or that samurai sword and contemplate and consider what you want to carve away and drop and let fall to the earth. So that in that trust of this process of letting go of that which you feel like, "I might practise not having that with me, I'll keep on cutting away that way of judging or that style of perfectionism or whatever it is, cut it away. Cut it away and drop it." It's in permaculture, that's chop and drop. That is what then goes in and puts nitrogen into the soil. That's what goes in and nourishes the soil so that it can become mineralized and lush and rich. And you can get that beautiful decomposing and decaying going on.

Mason: (23:50)

And then when you get around, you've had an appropriate winter. You get around to spring time, you're going to start getting a real reaping of new beautiful energy being breathed into your life. And that's the opportunity here, so if you can get in a presence that that is, you don't have to think about this all the time, but there's a particular energy of you drop in and feel that metal energy. You feel the qualities that we're talking about in how it personally feels to you and allow that to come to the surface during this season, then you're going to have a much smoother ride letting go.

Mason: (24:24)

Now, number two, very simple one. I know a lot of people, this is something I never thought I'd say when I was in my twenties, I was like... All those basic grandma little tips that come from Chinese medicine or even from my grandparents, it's like, "Cover up when you go out and it's cold. If it's windy, put a scarf on." That in autumn, and winter, but especially in autumn, when it kicks up and gets a little bit windy, putting that scarf on and protecting your neck from the cold and the wind, such a top tip.

Mason: (24:56)

And it's really relevant for me, when I was like I was saying in my twenties, because in my twenties, I just had so much time to do my personal practise and cultivate my energy and spend so much time in the sun. I was just able to do whatever I wanted to stay vibrantly healthy and I had a nice strong metabolism. And so I didn't feel the relevance of doing those extra little things like putting a scuff on making sure I've got socks on and shoes on, covering up when it's getting a little bit cold. And so I'm not letting that cold energy into my body. It's not a smart thing to be doing when you're yin. But as I've, I'm working a little bit more and I've got a child and I don't have all that crazy time to stay cultivated, these little tips, like putting a scaffold and stopping that wind from penetrating your body.

Mason: (25:43)

And what it does that wind is especially cutting in through the neck and it beats down at that surface protective wei chi, that protective energy that's like a shield. Can beat away at it, beat away, beat away, and that it penetrates. And then it's allowing a doorway for all those other pathogens, viruses and things to be able to get in during that season. So you might as well just cover up your neck. The benefits of staying exposed to the elements are in short little snippets, like that cold exposure. Go and do your cold exposure, but do it in short snippets, don't always be exposed to the cold. And if you're doing extremes, make sure your body's got the juice, the Jing, and the hates to be able to bring itself back to centre without too much fuss. Shoes and socks on, scarf on. Very important.

Mason: (26:31)

It's a dry season. Hydration is super important and it's a really wonderful time for you to be really focused on you're cultivating waters. Now, if you get into of the energy of the season, the metal will accumulate and attract water. And then that allows distil that down and send that down to the kidney. So you will have a very successful winter. You won't be spending winter healing from all the burnout from the yang months. If you can transition now into a yin time energy, you will start accumulating all this beautiful, these waters and this yin, this descending energy, this quietening down energy, and then you'll get to winter and you'll actually be cultivating, not healing. And if you want to be a really vibrant, healthy 80, 90 year, old, hundred year old and beyond, where you're not relying on drugs and surgery. I'm not saying that's bad or a failure if that's what happens, but if you want to have that intention, this is a really important season. Really, really important season.

Mason: (27:29)

And bringing up failure, this is a methodical time in terms of bringing the energy of the lung season. It's very objective, just very matter of fact, this metal energy. And so you can look at objectively there's things that you might've failed in doing. And don't avoid feeling that failure and mourning, say the loss of something, there are a lot of people in this season will go like, "Oh, if only I'd made this choice of doing this degree, or if I hadn't burned the bridge with that person." A lot of melancholy a lot of really consistently mourning or going over your failures because it's a perfectionist season. But if we can presence all those failures and accept what we've done, and then ease into them, we can start to see the value that was there in that failure and then integrate the lessons and move on very objectively.

Mason: (28:22)

This isn't a la-di-da like, "Oh, just slap some positivity pie on it." Put flowers on a piece of poo, the poo's still there. No, we want to look at the poo and see, and feel the intrinsic value of that experience. And you can bring that into your meditative practise and into your cognitive practise. That would be very useful. But back on hydration, lots of water. Water first thing in the morning. Start making maybe a little bit of warm water if your body has a hard time getting warm. Little pinch of sea salt can be a beautiful way to charge your water and then spinning your water and vortexing it. Get that electrical charge going. We love water with electrical charge. Shake it up. Don't just drink stagnant still water. Where do you see stagnant, still water in nature that's acceptable for drinking? You don't.

Mason: (29:09)

Animals and humans, we always go for the moving water because it's alive and it's vibrant. And that's the same I want you to be doing with the water that you drink and get the quality of water up. I'm just going to continue to be drinking wild spring water. It's the only way to go for me, but if I am drinking something that's not wild spring water, I'll be putting molecular hydrogen in it. And that's a tip and something that I think is really important for this day and age to make your water better. And it's just a little, little thing that you can add in. I get mine from supercells.

Mason: (29:37)

Next, we're going onto the food. Eating appropriately. We can go so deep on this, but the colour of the autumn is white and so you start moving into some like white foods, congee is just like the absolute, should be on the flag of autumn. We've got a beautiful congee recipe over at SuperFeast. You can go type congee into SuperFeast, and you'll be able to find that. But then obviously it's going to be seasonality, it's going to be know pumpkins and squash and pears and apples are going to start to come in. And the beautiful thing is you cook and poach those kinds of foods, they are really fluid forming. They deliver a lot of fluids to the body. And so you're going to find that with like persimmons and all these beautiful autumn foods, that they help to cultivate water within the body.

Mason: (30:23)

It's great to add tremella if you are particularly dry as well to your recipes as well, sweet and savoury, it's a really beautiful food. And then just little additional like hemp seeds, walnuts also deliver a lot of, particularly to the lungs and the large intestine, deliver and help cultivate some fluids. So it might be nice to start sprinkling them on some on top of some of your soups, crushing them up on some of your soups, a really great way to go about it. Exercise, exercise is going to start, the priority and the focus of your exercise and practise is no longer going to be, say the fiery gains of summer, but the energy of which we've talked about today. It's going to start to going a little bit less on the prioritisation of flogging yourself, getting gains, mass sweating sessions, and you want to stop bringing that methodical energy, that almost an analytical kind of energy to getting the value. You want to first of all, start with finding intrinsic value in yourself rather than flying out into ambiguity of getting gains in your body.

Mason: (31:28)

You also want to start looking at, when you're practising , you want to start watching for where you're judging yourself heavily, you've failed, you haven't hit this, at this age I thought you'd be here. So on and so forth, and then really get the value of your experience and then go forth with, and it's a really good season to have solid plans. Start tracking your physical practise, tracking for the year ahead where you'd realistically, because it's very grounded, realistic season, what you would like to achieve in your body. What's actually valuable to you and what's not valuable to you and has been projected onto you based on a past ideology you were or marketing messages, whatever it is, you can start really feeling what's valuable to you for your physical and energetic output through your meditation and your practise and these kinds of things.

Mason: (32:19)

But mainly to start relaxing, don't go too hard. If you're doing saunas, same thing. You don't want to be releasing heaps of fluid right now. So if you're having a sauna, or your infrared sauna, just open the door maybe a little bit, you're still getting blasted with those infrared, far, near, mid infrared rays, and they're still doing beautiful stuff at mobilising your body, maybe just don't sweat so much. And if you are, have a mineral complex or sea salt that you having and really focus on that rehydrating. What else have we got to talk about? Smell, right? So we want lots of time as we start descending, it's a lot of yin. Hopefully in a family flow, you can start doing a little bit of less, we're in a family flow, right now you can hear Aria in the background, not wanting to go to daycare today. But what you're going to see is like, hopefully you can start having less of the crazy obligations and social interactions that come with the summer months.

Mason: (33:16)

It's so beautiful when they're there, but you really need a reprieve and so hopefully you can start dedicating more time say with your family or with yourself just being in nature, at the beach, going for walks and particularly just spending time and then a little bit of contemplation, right? And then focus on the smell, engage the lungs through the sense. And so really focused this season on the smells that are in the forest or at the beach or wherever you are, even if it is in the beautiful suburb that you're able to go to nearby and walk through. That's what you want to be really focusing on. Same in your cooking. You're using more spices and engaging your senses and that'll get your lungs really salivating, and what happens when you salivate? You start secreting fluids, and that's what we want. We want lots of fluids coming out through getting engaged through our sense of smell.

Mason: (34:10)

Finally, we, no, no 'finally', that's it. Guys, just remember it's a very practical, it's a beautifully practical season and it's one that is absolute medicine for us in our Western worlds. And you don't have to do it all right now, you're going to have lots of these, hopefully. Lots of these autumns to do this. So start slow, be really intentional. Let go. Really start letting go, and then allowing yourself to perceive your own uniqueness, the uniqueness around you, the value you have intrinsically, the value around you. That happens when you can start letting go.

Alexandra Anttilla
Alexandra Anttilla

Alexandra is our SuperFeast podcast queen, making the magic happen behind the scenes in production. An ethereal creature, talented wordsmith and absolutely exquisite human, Alex is privy to the unseen, unheard and unfelt subtitles that swirl around us. A dreamer, creative, entrepreneur and baby mumma to the beautiful Zella, Alexandra carries a depth of presence and a wisdom beyond words. Alexandra holds a special place in the hearts of many, her gentle, yet soulful words offering nourishment and insight to our SuperFeast community as she shares them weekly in the SuperFeast podcast blog and newsletter.



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