July 20 – Fine calm morning; air tense and clear; not the slightest breeze astir; everything shining, the rocks with wet crystals, the plants with dew, each receiving its portion of irised dewdrops and sunshine like living creatures receiving their breakfast, their dew manna coming down from the starry sky like swarms of smaller stars.
How wondrous fine are the particles in showers of dew, thousands required for a single drop, growing in the dark as silently as grass! What pains are taken to keep this wilderness in health – showers of snow, showers of rain, showers of dew, floods of light, floods of invisible vapor, clouds, winds, all sorts of weather, interaction of plant on plant, animal on animal, etc. – beyond thought.
How fine Nature’s methods! How deeply with beauty is beauty overlaid! The ground covered with crystals, the crystals with lichens and low-spreading grasses and flowers, these with larger plants, leaf over leaf with ever-changing color and form, the broad palms of the firs outspread over these, the azure dome over all like a bell-flower, and star above star.
Yosemite Valley, California
From ‘My First Summer in the Sierra’
By John Muir – 1869
Dew is a yin qi fluid. The qi of this fluid moistens and brings luster to the areas of the side passages. Its qi and flavor are sweet and balanced and it lacks toxicity. Use: collect in a bowl during the time of the flourishing of the autumn dew. Simmered with malt sugar, it promotes longevity. It absorbs dangerous types of killing qi and is used in medicines that moisten the lungs and kill plaguing illnesses. It regulates worms that cause sores upon the skin and treats leprosy. Collected from the tips of medicinal herbs during the wei (未) hour of the day it cures the one hundred diseases. It treats xiaoke (wasting thirst disease) and causes the body to lighten. It resolves (feelings of) starvation and causes the flesh to become plump and lustrous.
Bencao Gongmu – ‘Water Sections’
By Li Shizhen – 1578
In order to allow online students time to review course material from the introductory weekend, the starting date for the online lecture series has been pushed back one week. The online class are now scheduled to begin on 4/8/13. To compensate for this an additional lecture has been added on 1/13/15. To view a full schedule of these changes please click here.