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In contrast to the visibility of Earth, Air is the Element that we cannot really see at all. We experience it mostly through our tactile and audial senses, feeling the strength and temperature of a breeze, or hearing the howl of the wind during a storm. Of course, we are in constant interaction with Air via the breath, even though most of the time we’re not conscious of it. In fact, you might say Air is the Element we notice the least, unless and until we don’t have enough of it! Air is a traveling energy, not limited to the ground-level perspective of Earth inhabitants, but free to rise and move over great distances. Air inhabits vast realms we have no access to, though recently we’ve been able to glimpse Air’s domain via planes, helicopters, and space shuttles. Because its light density renders it relatively “immune” to gravity, the energy of Air is detached and instantly changeable. Though its quality can be tempered by the presence of the other Elements, Air cannot ever be truly contained. Air carries sounds and scents from nearby locations, and so informs us about our surrounding environments. We also communicate by pushing air through the lungs and throat in order to speak or sing. Air energy is therefore associated with the qualities of intellect, mental clarity, and communication, and represents the source of knowledge and ideas. It is also the Element of imagination and inspiration—indeed, we speak both literally and figuratively of “needing fresh air” when our indoor environments, or our lives, have become stagnant. We also talk of surprises as coming “out of thin air” or “out of the blue,” as if to recognize the link between the invisible forces that influence our lives and the air itself.

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