Late summer qigong practice resonates with the element earth—the centre of all the other elements and seasons. Earth qigong is all about balance, centeredness, and trust. Earth is our source of nourishment, grounding, gravity, and stability. Earth is our mother and she is our home.
The organs that correspond to earth element and late summer are the spleen (yin organ), and the stomach (yang organ). The sense organ is the mouth (taste), which makes sense during this time of abundant food Qi. The healing sound is a grounding “Whoo” and the energy colour is yellow, like the rich yellow of the blooming sunflower this time of year.
Physically, the spleen, which is about the same size as the heart and sits just behind the stomach on the left side of the body, is an important organ of digestion. It governs our food Qi by extracting and converting the pure essence of our food and liquid.
Energetically, the earth provides us with a centre, enabling us to balance our lives and live with harmony. Emotionally, earth element helps us to digest and absorb our life experience, and is associated with transforming, nourishing, and change.
Emotions and states held in the spleen may include worry, anxiety, nervousness, overthinking, obsession, and self-worth issues. The balancing and natural energies of the spleen include trust, openness, resolution, centeredness, balance, and equanimity.
Imbalance, blocks, excess or deficiency in the earth energy may show up as mouth sores, digestive ailments, fatigue, weight challenges, allergies, chronic immune disorders, candidiasis, disrupted cycles, and addiction. The classic symptom of earth element imbalance is seen in the person who is unable to receive love and support but is very good at giving it to others.
As always, the other elements (and organs) play a role in the health of the spleen and balance of earth element. Wood (liver) regulates earth (spleen), just as tree roots hold soil and compassion and kindness (liver) can help to regulate worry and imbalance (spleen). Fire (heart) is the mother of Earth (spleen) just as late summer is born of summer and joy gives birth to openness. Working with the spleen now, in late summer, will also help us when fall comes and we enter the domain of the metal element with its organ focus of the lungs. The ability to trust, be open and take in nourishment (spleen) can result in the production of integrity, strength, and the ability to let go (metal).
Flowing and balanced spleen Qi helps us to find our balance, our centre, to take in life and to trust in the divine unfolding of our journey. To help us with this we will practice Three Source Breathing, Earth Qigong, Raising Phoenix, Parting the Horse’s Mane, Compassionate Heart Qigong and some of the wonderful Shibashi Qigong series, which supports digestion and all of the other elements and organ networks at once.
To see the summer qigong class schedule, click here.
I look forward to practicing with you.