In Traditional Chinese Medicine TCM, the Earth element corresponds with the late summer season from the end of August to the Autumn Equinox in September. It marks a time of pause, to ground, and regroup. Late summer is the season of harvest when we can take the time to rest and reap abundance from our hard work. Also, it marks the autumn equinox, with equal light and darkness. It reminds us to come to our center and find balance while being fully present and rooted in nature.
Qi is the life force of nature expressing itself through our bodies. The wisdom of nature reveals to us how to take care of our bodies and attune with the cycles of the seasons. The healing sound of the earth element is HOOOO. The color is yellow and has a close connection with our solar plexus and personal empowerment.
The late summer season corresponds with the internal organs spleen/pancreas and stomach, showing us that it is time to tune-up and tend to these organs to improve digestion. As well as detoxify the mind and body's toxic residue from over-thinking and worrying.
The spleen is connected to our wisdom mind, also known as Yi. Yi is our capacity for scholarly achievements, setting intentions, and digesting thoughts while staying grounded. The Yi can become damaged when the mind over-thinks, with a pensiveness leading to worry. A healthy Yi remains fully present, attuned to the gut-brain and solar plexus, supporting healthy digestion. Connecting with nature's earth element is therapeutic for harmony so that the Yi Spirit can sustain a calm, clear mind. While supporting our ability to listen to the gut-brain and trust our intuition.
Our organs can hold and trap emotions in our bodies. When we are unaware of this, we sometimes behave in ways not in alignment with how we want to be showing up in the world. As an alchemical art, Qigong can transform these stuck emotions and liberate them.
We bring awareness to this part of our body during our practice, and with gentle movements, we massage the organs to release and untangle the trapped emotions. Thus alchemizing worry and anxiety into compassion and confidence.
Our Solid and Serene Tincture for Stress and Anxiety Support is another wonderful ally for times when your anxiety levels are keeping you from finding your center.
Late summer encourages us to eat wisely. Choose your sugars wisely to support your pancreas. Consider eating "sweet" foods like apples, cabbage, carrots, dates, figs, grapes, kidney beans, lettuce, milk, olives, peaches, pears, squash, string beans, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and walnuts.
How you eat is just as important as what you eat. This season invites you to eat slowly to improve digestion and absorption. And since the earth element rules mealtime and community, late summer is an ideal time to share a dinner with loved ones and then take a walk together out in nature.
Wheel of the Year- Phases of the Elements
In the winter, we planted and "watered" seeds. In the spring, those seeds grew as "wood." That wood became fuel to our summer's heart "fire." The fire burned and created "earth." This process reminds me of how forest fires leave fertile soil. Or how fiery volcanoes erupt and form new land.
We just passed through summer's heart fires, and the universe asked us what do you desire to create? And now, in late summer, we have the opportunity to manifest and harvest that desire as it takes physical form. In a few weeks, we'll release and let go of all that no longer is needed in the Autumn. So we can go within and plant our seeds again.
The Bear Form
In late summer, we practice the Bear form from the 5 Animal Sports. The Bear is one of my favorite forms because it teaches us how powerful we are and how to control that power. It gives us immediate feedback. For example, when we take action from a place of disconnection, we get thrown off our center, vs. when we take rooted and grounded action, we can respond to the result of that action more gracefully.
Since the bear form is associated with the earth and the spleen, it promotes healthy digestion and absorption of nutrients and energy. It also supports you to be more present, nurturing, relaxed, and sociable.
You are invited to join our relaxed and friendly class this season as we deepen our roots, nourish our bodies, ease our worries, stand firmly in our power, and activate our gut knowing.