Seasonal Factors in Pulse Diagnosis

The Spiritual Axis describes a pulse for each season. The plant cycle provides an image whereby we can connect the pulse image to that of seasonal cycles and the concourse of nature. In spring plants sprout forth the similar status in the pulse takes place in the form of tension. When summer arrives, the plants are in full bloom and the pulse expands with a larger and urgent shape. As fall arrives, the vital forces begin to retreat and the pulse, while still reaching the surface, becomes uneven and uncertain as retreat begins. When winter arrives, the pulse becomes deep (see Table 6). These seasonal influences correspond to changes of life and experiences that occur between birth and death.

If the pulse does not match the season, there is a possibility of seasonal affective disorder, seasonal allergies or other conditions that arise in the context of seasonal disturbances. The seasonal affective disorders are often seen in the autumnal period as the light wanes. The herbal strategies tied to each pulse are as follows:

Season Pulse Condition Herbal Strategy
Summer Urgent Heat Cooling
Fall Floating Dryness Moistening, diaphoretic, supplementing
Winter Deep Damp Diuretic, warming
Spring Tense Stagnation Carminatives, diaphoretics

Pay attention to whether the pulse anticipates a following season, or correlates with a previous system. This can provide a sense of whether the person is forward focusing and anxious or backwards focused and depressed.

The urgent pulse may require cooling agents that depend on the correlated pulse. Cooling diaphoretics such as mint family are appropriate for a floating urgent pulse. If the pulse is urgent and tense, then skullcap might be considered. If it is weak, then organotrophics (amphoterics) should be used, select an agent which strengthens the corresponding organ. If it is weak or without root in the heart position (left 1st), a cardiotonic such as hawthorne berry or arjuna might be considered.