The order in which the Five Elements evolve according to Five Element theory:
From the ultimate energy center comes Akash (Ether, or Space, as emptiness, a void, a possibility);
then Vayu/Air, (sometimes referred to as Wind) fills that space and is eventually released;
from the released Vayu/Air comes Agni/Fire;
the combination of Vayu/Air and Agni/Fire evolves into Apas/Water;
the combination of Agni/Fire and Apas/Water evolves into Earth/Prithvi;
from the combination of Apas/Water and Earth/Prithvi comes all earthly forms and beings
Notice that the order above evolves from the most abstract, subtle level to the most concrete, physical, gross level. Everything in the natural world exists in one or both of these forms: subtle, gross or both.
In the exploration below, we’ll spotlight Akash Element and Mudra. Then, for the next days, we’ll explore the other elements in the order of their creation in the natural world.
Spotlight on Akash (Ether) Element and Akash Mudra
Warm up your hands.
Bring your attention to the Akash / Ether element in the body. Maybe you choose the cavity of the mouth or ears, maybe your empty stomach, any sense of Akash / Ether / space.
Then bring your attention to your breath, particularly your at the level of your lungs.
Then keeping attention at the lungs, bring attention to the exhales. Gradually, release more and more air out of lungs with each exhale. Be gentle. In the brief pause after the exhale, feel the emptiness in your lungs and the potential created for air to return and fill them.
Notice that it’s the expansion of the lungs that creates space, which is a vacuum that draws the air into the lungs. Reflect on how this relates to the arising of Akash / Ether in the lungs and then to the arising of Air in the lungs.
Do you have a sense for how Akash is both emptiness or void but also infinite potential, holding space for anything to enter? And then how the creation of space creates a vacuum that draws air in?