The Liver Meridian is the Yin meridian of the Wood element, and twin meridian to the Yang Gallbladder meridian. The Liver in Chinese Medicine is seen as the General in charge of planning, and the Gallbladder is the Liver’s right-hand: it uses the Liver’s vision to make judgments and important decisions. Thus, the Liver is responsible for planning and oversees our path in life, where we are heading — while the Gallbladder is responsible for putting those plans into realisation, making judgments on the options ahead, making choices.
Every full moon in Pisces will affect this meridian, opening up a window of opportunity to more deeply balance this meridian, but also opening up a time where we might feel its imbalances most. These windows last from approximately a week before to 4-5 days after – some people will be more sensitive to it and experience a longer period of being affected.
The Liver meridian starts at the inside of the nail of the big toe and runs along the top of the foot. It climbs along the front of the ankle and then runs up the inside (medial) part of the leg (running just beneath the Spleen meridian) until it reaches the pubic area. From here it curves around the external genitalia and goes into the lower abdomen where it enters into the liver and the gallbladder. Rising higher, it branches in several directions, with one branch connecting to the Lung meridian. Rising still higher, the Liver meridian follows the throat and connects with the eyes before branching again. One branch reaches down across the cheeks and circles the lips – a typical area for acne when the liver is imbalanced! – , while a higher branch goes across the forehead to the crown where it links with the Governor Vessel meridian.
The Liver relates to emotions. It generates anger, a clearing force, to keep things moving and flowing. When anger dissolves, this energy transforms into faith, optimism, and wisdom. The liver is also the organ in which old anger is stored – the gallbladder being the storehouse for the related emotion of frustration. By harnessing any Pisces full moon’s influence on the liver meridian you can deeply work on shedding old patterns of reacting, and clear and heal the energy circuit constituted by the liver meridian.
The Liver is responsible for spreading Qi smoothly in the blood, body, organs, and psyche. It controls the sinews and muscle tone, and rules the health of nails, vision, and the eyes. Liver stagnation or hyper-activity can lead to extreme emotional states. A healthy Liver transforms potentially repressed emotions into true, reliable emotions.
The Liver is easily influenced by anger, frustration, and resentment. We want to clear away something as it disturbs us. Having emotions is perfectly healthy, however when we fixate or make a habit of any emotion, it will create disharmony and disease. We can utilize the clearing energy of anger by directing it into positive actions such as new creative projects, or making changes in the world with balance and wisdom. Excessive anger and resentment cause the Qi in the body to rise up quickly, causing headaches, ringing in the ears, high blood pressure or GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux disease). If the Qi stagnates it can lead to abdominal distention, more frustration, slow digestion and more. A good rule of thumb is to never eat when you are angry or upset. And do not eat with people you do not like.
Follow the below recommendations to reduce possible symptoms and balance the meridian for a whole body healing effect.
Possible symptoms (see the meridian graph to understand these):
- tiredness & chronic fatigue
- foot pain
- headaches (throbbing, violent)
- tightness in the chest or between the shoulders
- pain in the shoulder
- nausea or indigestion
- irritability or short temper
- eye problems
- poor or blurred vision
- frequent sighing
- lump in throat
- violent emotional outbursts
- dark scant urine
- numbness in limbs
- cravings for alcohol or greasy fried foods
- long-standing resentment
- painful periods
- Toxins in skincare or cleaning products
- Environmental toxins
- Excessive computer work
- Eating when angry or emotional
- Eating in less than graceful and peaceful environments or with people you don’t like.
- Stuffing emotions down with food.
- eat sour foods and homemade yogurt
- drink grapefruit juice, warm lemon water, or water with apple cider vinegar (ideally on an empty stomach to help flush out toxins from the night)
- Juice recipe for the liver: Blend 1 grapefruit, 2 oranges, 1 lime (or lemon), a handful of shelled raw sunflower seeds, add honey to taste.
- Casserole: Combine in a baking pan 1 bunch of beets (3-5), 1 lb. (400g) carrots, 2 bunches of scallions, 3 cloves of freshly chopped garlic, 1 cube butter/ghee/coconut oil, tamari, black pepper and cook in the oven. For non-vegans, at the end you could add 1 lb. of grated goat cheese (only add it at the end to avoid burning)
- All green foods (esp. leafy greens), plus beetroot and carrot are good for the liver. Especially artichokes, wheat grass, barley grass, spirulina, chlorella. (Tinctures of) dandelion and artichoke are also very helpful.
- A juice blend of beet/carrot/celery juice. Ginger great to add too.
- Avoid or moderate sweets
- Avoid too much salt and too many spices.
- Avoid greasy foods and refined foods
- Avoid caffeine
Malas & Gemstones to help balance & support the liver:
- Epidote in Quartz: https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/8mm-epidote-in-quartz-mala/
- Blue Imperial / Sea Sediment Jasper: https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/36-bead-8mm-blue-imperial-sea-sediment-jasper-with-howlite-guru-bead/
- Chrysocolla: https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/8mm-chrysocolla-mala-darker-beads-with-blue-tassel/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/8mm-chrysocolla-white-jade-mala-with-white-jade-guru-bead/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/8mm-chrysocolla-and-turquoise-mala/
- Rhodonite: e.g. https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-apatite-rhodonite-mala/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-chrysoprase-rhodonite-rhodochrosite-mala-amazonite-guru-bead/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-grey-agate-cream-pink-rhodonite-mala/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/8mm-rudraksha-rhodonite-clear-quartz-mala/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-rhodonite-mala/
- Bloodstone: e.g. https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-bloodstone-mala-with-sunstone-guru-bead/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/mala-yellow-jade-bloodstone-red-agate-carnelian/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-moss-agate-bloodstone-yellow-mookaite-mala/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-bloodstone-and-yellow-mookaite-mala/ or https://www.shuniya-yoga.org/product/6mm-bloodstone-sunstone-mala-with-sunstone-guru-bead/