Emotional Balance with Meridian Massage

Everything changes, including our emotions and moods.

The 5 ElementsEmotional balance does not imply having the same, constant “emotional temperature” regardless of the moment. Yin and Yang are in a continuous cycle of change. Our emotions will also cycle, if we allow them to.

Emotional “imbalance” is often the result of our attempt to block the expression of an emotion that we do not like, or to hold onto an emotion that pleases us.

Holding on and blocking creates stagnation within the meridians and the build up of Qi.  Where the stagnation arises is often reflected somewhere in the meridians and organs associated with that emotion. Knowing the 5 Element associations of Yin Organs, Yang Organs, and emotions gives the practitioner a potent place to begin. (See the diagram below.)
LotusWhichever emotion is pent-up or stubbornly lingering can move once the meridian system is opened up and the client finds the willingness to let go of the emotion. The letting go may look like the expression of the emotion, or it may simply be a return to deeper, more relaxed breathing and inner calm.
By working on the abdominal organ and its associated meridian, a great deal of movement in the meridian system can be created. For instance, if the emotion of worry is built up, address the Earth Element. By massaging the stomach (the spleen cannot be contacted), you contact the Stomach and Spleen meridians, and you can unblock the meridians and allow the Qi to flow.

Emotions are a reflection of Qi.

When the Qi is flowing smoothly through the meridians, the emotions are more likely to flow smoothly as well. Something might worry us, but we  keep breathing as we move into the next moment and allow the worry to dissipate.  By being present in the next moment, we are more likely to find ourselves calm, content and curious about the events unfolding in our life.

Chart of the 5 Elements with Yin Organs, Yang Organs and Emotion associations.

(Meridians have the same names as the Organs.)

Chart of the 5 Elements

Diagram of the 5 Elements

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Cindy Black

Cindy Black is the Founder of Big Tree School of Natural Healing and the author of Meridian Massage, Pathways to Vitality. She is appreciated for her ability to make the complex accessible, fun, and practical.


  1. GSN on December 6, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    Thank you Cindy. Wishing you and yours peace and joy for the holidays. Q: I understand that Qi moves in different directions in each of these meridians -some towards the body, some away from the midline etc. Would you recommend the directions for each of these meridians for a self-massage with intention for the yin and yang organs to release any stagnation and get the Qi to flow properly? Thank you.

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac., LMT on December 6, 2016 at 4:19 pm

      In general, massage Yang meridians from head towards the feet or hands, and Yin meridians from the feet or hands towards the chest.
      Thanks for writing!

  2. Brad Holmes on October 26, 2016 at 8:10 am

    Hi Cindy,
    May I ask your advice about remedies please?
    Last March, I was barbed by a stingray, just underneath the medial maliolus ( hope I spelt that correctly).
    I am in constant pain, have lost half my strength in my left leg, sleep only an accumulation of 4 hours per night, and it has affected my central nervous system.
    I teach, and therefore practice Tai Chi & Qigong, have acupuncture and homeopathy ( Led 30).
    All are working slowly.
    Can you recommend anything else please?
    Many thanks,
    Brad Holmes

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac., LMT on November 2, 2016 at 5:03 pm

      Hi Brad,
      I have been thinking about this for days, I’m sorry for the delay. I would check out homeopathic remedies – when I have pain, I take homeopathic arnica montana, for nerve things, I take homeopathic hypericium. It is best to consult with a homeopath to ensure that you get the right remedy and dose.
      I hope this helps!

  3. cat rossiter on June 3, 2013 at 8:55 am

    printed this for study while waiting in Williamsport at a DEC…panel later today to oppose fracking in Loyalsock State Forest lands in PA.
    Many thanks & much love,

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac. on June 4, 2013 at 8:55 am

      You are very welcome. May you live in balance and harmony.

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