Nature is our guide and if we know how to observe it and follow its suggestions, we can find health and longevity. In the simplicity of this concept lies one of the principles on which the teachings of many traditional cultures and medicines are based.
By studying ancient wisdoms, often developed simultaneously in different parts of the globe, we learn how important it is to know our roots in order to build solid and stable innovations. Returning to nature, observing its flow, especially when the road seems difficult and confusing, is often the most effective way to rediscover the clarity of our intentions and inner balance.
The Four Elements
Already in the fourth century BC, in the Mediterranean basin, particularly in Greece, a culture based on the four qualities – Hot, Cold, Wet and Dry – was emerging. The qualities were said to be present in different proportions and determine characteristics and aspects of living and non-living things. This ancient culture has, even in our modern society, never lost its relevancy.
According to Traditional European and Mediterranean Medicine, each of the four elements – Air, Fire, Earth, Water – is characterized by the complementary combination of two of the four qualities and, in turn, gives precise characteristics to the individual by defining, with its dominance, a specific constitution. Thus, we know that the sanguine temperament is dominated by the humid heat of the air element, the choleric one by the dry heat of fire, the melancholic by the dry cold of the earth and the phlegmatic temperament by the humid cold of water.
Each one of these types is characterized by body shapes, skin color, different behaviors and thoughts depending on the prevailing element. Depending on the relationships between the four elements, specific aptitudes and characteristics are observed.
Finding a State of Balance
Recognizing the behaviors and the bodily expression of such prevalence or deficiencies, and therefore, identifying the excess or deficit of a given element allows us to support the rebalancing actions necessary to achieve a state of well-being.
And so the sanguine type, dominated by air, will tend to have an eclectic and dynamic personality, mostly joyful, enthusiastic and optimistic, in search of pleasure and aesthetic satisfaction, curious and very inclined to socialize and to spend one’s time together. At the same time, when the air element exceeds to the point of dominating the others and generating a loss of balance, enthusiasm and joy can turn into superficiality and inconclusiveness. Curiosity becomes intrusive, optimism can lead to unreliable and inconstant attitude, wasting time and energy and becoming an obstacle rather than a potential.
In behavior as in the body, a tonic and firm physique, without a lifestyle that maintains the balance between the elements, can become excessively swollen, round and voluminous.
Evaluation and Treatment
A naturopathic holistic evaluation can provide a clear picture of the dominant element, the deficient and the relationship between all four. This evaluation proposes personalized itineraries that include advice on lifestyle, treatments and massages that favor the restoration of balance.
A compression massage with olive wood pads performed on the futon helps the sanguine type dominated by the air to reconnect to the earth and to the possibility of structuring one’s ideas to make them concrete.
In the opposite direction, a suspension treatment, using the hammocks of an Air Studio, gives lightness and playfulness to the melancholic which, dominated by the earth, is stuck in its own rigidity and demotivation.
A Holistic Way of Life
In Traditional Mediterranean Medicine, not only treatments, massages and rituals play a vital role, but also nutrition, movement, art, meditation and awareness. These are some of the practices identified to support the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual dimensions in a path of rebalancing, which must necessarily embrace all aspects of the human being, inseparably connected and interacting with each other.
Based on this knowledge and skills, the most suitable path to recovering balance is designed for each person: it means choosing to eat what most strengthens our constitution, preferring the most harmonizing physical activity, cultivating our innate talents, without forgetting to understand and accept our weaknesses, to transform them into the most precious teacher, and more… It means meditating and contemplating not to forget the spirit that animates us, it means understanding that we are responsible for our health and the way we deal with situations, it means familiarizing ourselves with our emotional part to be sure of expressing and not repressing it.
Choosing your lifestyle is all this and much more: it’s the most powerful and direct way to reconnect to yourself! And since we are a part of nature, returning to nature is the fastest and easiest way back to our inner self.
Traditional European and Mediterranean Medicine at Palazzo BelVedere
Located in Montecatini Terme, the only Italian spa town included by UNESCO in the “Great Spas of Europe” list, Palazzo BelVedere has its roots in a destination renowned for its thermal waters. A destination that over time attracted names such as Giuseppe Verdi or Giacomo Puccini but also international stars such as Clark Gable, Audrey Hepburn, Coco Chanel or Grace Kelly. A historic building, renovated in form and substance to become a save haven, whose holistic concept of well-being is inspired by the principles of Traditional European and Mediterranean Medicine offering rebalancing journeys to learn to see the beauty within and around ourselves.
The Vitaliter Programs are tailor-made, based on an initial comparative holistic assessment, on the length of stay and the intensity that each guest is willing to invest. Guests can choose between 3 days to reduce stress and enjoy a serene experience, 5 days to awaken the vital energy, 7 days to increase resilience, 10 days to rediscover one’s talents and the joy of living and 15 or 21 days for a deep self-renewal.