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Grain Full Empowerment

Dear Qigong friend,

On Saturday, May 20th, the eighth phase of the Chinese seasonal calendar begins. This phase, Grain Full (Xiaoman), starts at 4:30 PM EDT as the sun crosses 60° Longitude (0° Gemini). Please join the thousands of practitioners worldwide who will usher this event by practicing the Grain Full Empowerment.

Wishing you Good Qi,
Robert Peng

Stage Spring Summer Autumn Winter
1Start of Spring
Feb 3
Start of Summer
May 5
Start of Autumn
Aug 7
Start of Winter
Nov 7
2Rain Water
Feb 18
Grain Full
May 20
Limit of Heat
Aug 22
Minor Snow
Nov 21
3Awakening of Insects
Mar 5
Grain in Ear
Jun 5
White Dew
Sep 7
Major Snow
Dec 6
4Vernal Equinox
Mar 20
Summer Solstice
Jun 21
Autumn Equinox
Sep 22
Winter Solstice
Dec 21
5Clear and Bright
Apr 4
Minor Heat
Jul 6
Cold Dew
Oct 7
Minor Cold
Jan 5
6Grain Rain
Apr 19
Major Heat
Jul 22
Frost Descent
Oct 23
Major Cold
Jan 19


In this edition of the newsletter we explore the dominant quality that arises in nature during Grain Full and consider how you can awaken that same quality to empower your day-to-day life. Then, further below, you will find Practice Guidelines for the Grain Full Empowerment, a special Qigong exercise designed to help you boost your vitality by absorbing the Qi energies overflowing during this seasonal phase. 

In the last edition of the newsletter we considered the meaning of summer and described the theme of summer as booming growth and the joy it inspires. Now, let’s consider the unique contribution Grain Full makes to the fulfillment of that vision.  

Over the next fifteen days, nature will undergo a noticeable burst of growth. Grains in particular will puff and become fuller, though they will not yet ripen. The theme of “fuller but not yet ripe” characterizes the quality associated with Grain Full. 

Maybe you have an old high school yearbook gathering dust in a closet somewhere in your home. Let’s imagine that you find it and show your high school portrait to a friend. The natural reaction would be for both of you to chuckle. Seen through adult eyes, our teenage personas are comical. But why should we be amused? Laughter often happens when we expect one outcome and another unexpected outcome happens. The distance separating you as a “green” teenager and a “ripened” adult is funny. 

Now, let’s imagine that your high school portrait stepped out of the yearbook and sized you up. What would your adolescent self think of your current self? Well, what does the average teen think of the average adult? Boring. Predictable. Domesticated. Chances are that your high school self would use similar adjectives to describe you. 

Adolescence is wildly curious and unpredictably foolish (from the adult perspective), and those qualities serve an essential developmental function: They hurl us into the complexities of life with an open mind and allow us learn from our mistakes. As we move through this process, we mature. We ripen.

Legally we become adults when we’re either 18 or 21, but psychologically, there is an aspect of us that remains adolescent forever—the part of us that is perpetually curious and open to new experiences. Grain Full favors that aspect of your personality. During this seasonal phase, you are encouraged to awaken your “inner teen” and explore and experiment, even if activities lead you to make “interesting” mistakes. Later this year, you may look back at yourself now and chuckle. But the irony is that unless you exercise your curiosity and give yourself permission to make mistakes and learn from them, you might remain perennially green behind the ears. 

Doing the Full Grain Empowerment on Saturday, May 20th between 4:30 PM EDT and 6:30 PM EDT will boost your energy to another level. (Remember to adjust for the time difference if you live in another time zone). I encourage you to channel that energy into any enthralling new possibilities manifesting in your life right now.  Grain Full continues until Monday, June 5th at 7:36 AM EDT when Grain in Ear, the third stage of summer begins. Until then, let your hair down and go a little wild.

(If you can't see the video on the screen, you can see it on YouTube ).


The spine is made up of five segments including the coccyx, the lower back (sacral and lumbar spine), the middle and upper back (thoracic spine), and the neck (cervical spine).

The vertebra associated with this empowerment is Thoracic 7 (T7) in the middle back.

Thoracic 7 (T7) is the vertebra that is level with the lower angle of your shoulder blade when you are standing up.

Find T7 now.


(You can practice this empowerment every day until the next Jieqi, but the golden time is on Saturday, May 20th between 4:30 PM - 6:30 PM EDT)

Once every 15 days, the sun crosses over "power spot" and a wave of powerful cosmic energy is released. The purpose of this empowerment is to concentrate this energy into your spine and internal organs.

  1. Sit comfortably or lie down and relax every part of your body.
  2. Inhale through all the pores of your skin, collect universal Qi energy and concentrate this energy to T7. Exhale and visualize T7 glowing brightly. Continue this breathing patterns 36 times.
  3. Then, inhale, focus on T7, exhale and visualize the light from T7 spreading throughout your body, to your spine, your bones, and to your internal organs. Repeat 36 times.
  4. Finally, inhale and collect the light and energy from all over your body into your Lower Dantian which is located three finger widths below your navel in the center of your body. Then exhale and concentrate the energy there. Repeat three times. Then, relax, and nourish your Qi, feeling like a sponge soaking in a warm tub of water. Maintain this state for as long as you want.


(Practice this exercise once a day until the next seasonal phase begins)

The purpose of this exercise is to strengthen the soft tissue surrounding the vertebra associated with the current empowerment. Every 15 days we focus on a specific vertebra and over the course of the year we tonify the whole spine. Be gentle and don't strain your back.

  1. Sit cross-legged resting your hands on both sides of the body.
  2. Place your left hand on your left calf, and raise your right hand up from the side, palm facing up, fingers pointing to the left (inside). Then inhale, stretch your palm up while looking at your hand, hold your breath, exhale, and relax your arm as you look back to the front. Repeat 36 times.
  3. Repeat the same sequence on the other side.
  4. Gently bite your teeth 36 times. Then swoosh your tongue around your mouth until it is full of saliva. Swallow and send the energy of your saliva down to your Lower Dantian. Repeat three times.

Enjoy your practice!