Your body is energy. Modern science perceives this energy many different ways, from within your smallest bits of matter (e.g. electrons) to the quantum fields that comprise 99.9999999% of you. Ancient scientists—devoid of technology—perceived this energy more metaphorically (e.g., meridians, doshas, chakras, auras).
Enter the zodiac as a way to understand and work with your energy.
This month’s zodiac sign is Libra. When Libra’s constellation—the Scales—is highlighted, the sign provides an earthly reminder that there are invisible scales hanging all around us. From work demands and self-care to portions of vegetables versus dessert, equilibrating the sides of these scales requires you to engage your inner Libra—to be aware of which side needs more weight, more focus, more time, and more attention. This perpetual calibration is what keeps you feeling like you are getting what you need while attending to others. Sure, maybe you could do with a little more or a little less but, overall, you feel balanced, in check, supported—like you are getting what you need while responding fairly to the environment and people around you.
Libra’s fundamental focus is on people, especially your partnerships and relationships. The lesson with its energy is to make sure that your Libra does not lose integrity in attuning to everyone else’s needs. People-pleasing is a weakness of the sign, and it’s tiring when the Libra side of you pleases everyone except yourself. It is not uncommon, then, for your Libra to reach a point where your energy feels spent, fatigued, and generally out of balance. As if you’re perpetually “bending over backwards.”
Physically, Libra relates to your lower back. The lumbar region is distinctive for large bones that support the weight above—from your head, neck, arms, and back—while balancing their movements too. To do so, your back has support mechanisms in place, like intervertebral discs, ligaments, and muscles. In other words, your back has “got your back.” But do you give it the support it needs to support you?
Lower back pain—one of the top reasons for visits to primary care offices—typically occurs when back muscles are too weak or too tight. If they are tight, your inner Libra might be holding on to support structures for dear life. Perhaps your routines for self-support are too rigid or limited. Perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate how to support yourself now and going forward.
If the scales are tipped the other way, the deep back muscles cannot support either themselves or the surrounding structures, which makes the entire region more susceptible to injury. Or perhaps you have support systems in place but they are all external (like friends) versus internal (like self-confidence). Either way, your back may one day no longer support the lifestyle that your Libra is leading, and you may experience “the straw that broke the camel’s back.”
There is no need to wait for an injury, however, to give your back (or any part of your body) what it needs. Every physical structure—from your body to your abode—requires a backbone for support, and your back is no exception. In fact, it is your foundation. How well does yours support you? To see, try the yoga cobra pose, which is also great for back-strengthening:
Lie flat on your belly. Hands are flat on the floor, directly under your shoulders; fingers are engaged and elbows hugged in toward your sides. Legs are elongated, with the tops of your feet pressed into the floor. Inhale and begin to extend your elbows, lifting your chest off the floor. The lift should arise from the strength of your lower back, not your arms. Hips and legs stay on the ground; buttocks are engaged but not gripped. Be mindful not to hold your breath!
Extend your arms only to the height at which you can maintain a connection between the front of your pelvis and the floor—which might mean that your elbows remain bent. Make sure that your head and neck are aligned as a continuation of the rest of your spine and not overly extended or flexed; your gaze should fall diagonally on the floor in front of you.
Depress your shoulders, firm your shoulder blades against your back, and lift your hands two inches off of the floor. Notice if the height of your back lowers as a result. Wherever you are in space, hold the pose for thirty seconds, breathing. Release to the floor on an exhalation.
Note that the height of your back when your hands are off the floor (and your buttocks are relaxed) represents the strength intrinsic to your back and, specifically, its extensor muscles. The stronger your back becomes, the higher it will be able to lift off the floor and the longer you will be able to hold it. Of course, strength needs to be balanced with stretch so your back does not become too tight or rigid. Instead, it should possess a flexible stability that allows it to give and receive support both internally and externally. Which, perhaps, comes from yet another Libra-esque balance between saying no to others and yes to you.
Let me know how the exercise works for you or if you tried another that you prefer. None of this is absolute; it’s all relative to and in encouragement of you.
See you—and your sacral center—in Scorpio,
Dr. Stephanie / StephanieMarangoMD.com
P.S. To learn more about Libra energy, check-out this post by my stellar coauthor Rebecca Gordon.
P.P.S. Balance is a big deal, especially as we enter the flurry of fall. Fortunately, balance is dynamic—an ongoing process, not an end destination. Read here how dynamism, motion and change form your foundation from the quantum level on up. And learn that— when you harness your innate and continual motion—it’s easier to go with the flow and harder to get “stuck.”
The first book of its kind, Your Body and the Stars is a fun, practical, and insightful handbook that takes a revolutionary approach to holistic wellness by unlocking the powers of the stars.
Do you suffer from neck pains? Go to the chapter on Taurus and the neck. How about sore knees? Learn preventive tips and exercises in the Capricorn chapter. Is your birth sign a Leo? Then read about how to optimize your Leo qualities and health. Your Body and the Stars is the first comprehensive reference guide to go deep into the twelve zodiac signs and the specific body region each sign represents—from your head down to your toes. Each chapter integrates a self-directed program and holistic approach to health—both your emotional or mental well-being as well as the physical health of your body. Practical end-of-chapter tips, questions, and illustrated step-by-step exercises give readers the tools they need to treat what is troubling them and to integrate this new perspective into their day-to-day life to prevent further illness.
Your Body and the Stars brings together a medically trained, holistic physician, Dr. Stephanie Marango, and a talented astrologist, Rebecca Gordon, whose horoscopes have appeared in Elle and on Epicurious.com. They combine their individual expertise to bring the twelve zodiac signs to physical life, providing a lifelong guide that can both prevent and self-heal, illuminating your head-to-toe healing connection to the cosmos.
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