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SEASONAL QIGONG SERIES

Start of Spring Empowerment



Dear Qigong friend,

On Friday, February 3rd, the first phase of the Chinese seasonal calendar begins. This phase, Start of Spring (Lichun), starts at 10:34 AM EST as the sun crosses 315° Longitude (15° Aquarius). Please join the thousands of practitioners worldwide who will usher this event by practicing the Start of Spring 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

Start of Spring (LICHUN JIEQI)



On Friday, February 3rd, the 1st phase of the Chinese seasonal calendar begins. This phase, Start of Spring (Lichun Jieqi), begins at 10:34 AM EST as the sun reaches 315° Longitude (15° Aquarius). Start of Spring is the first of the six stages of spring. In this newsletter we will explore the “meaning” of springtime in general and then focus on the "meaning" of the first phase of the season. Then, further below, you will find Practice Guidelines for the Start of Spring Empowerment

 

Over the next three months, springtime will gradually unfold. Day by day, you may not notice any change, but ninety days from now, looking back, you would notice a dramatic transformation all around. Nature will be green and bursting with vitality. The warming sky will be filled with chirping melodies and the buzz of insects. The “mood” of nature will have shifted by ninety degrees. The difference between wintry starkness and a landscape of animated greenery captures the essence of springtime.


Springtime represents the "rebirth" of nature which retreated underground over the last three months. The life force is about to burst forth with irrepressible vitality. Spring is an expansive life-affirming season that gushes with youthful exuberance. The themes embodied by springtime include new possibilities, and the excitement they generate.  I envision Spring as a boy with large curious eyes eager to explore a mysterious new world. As we enter springtime, nature will support you when you embody the spirit of boundless possibilities.

  

Now let’s zero in on the meaning of the first phase of Spring, Start of Spring. If springtime is a time of new beginnings, then the 1st phase of Spring represents the beginning of the beginning. Picture an artist standing before a blank canvass. What will she paint? She doesn't know yet. The possibilities are endless. Her freedom is complete and so is her openness. Facing endless possibilities she is capable creating of anything. As soon as a vision emerges and she makes her first mark on the canvass, the universe of possibilities will shrink away from infinity, but before her vision emerges she embodies the "beginning of the beginning" and she is free to imagine anything. 

 

The theme associated with Start of Spring is perfect freedom. Now is the time to allow yourself not to know. Over the next fifteen days relax the mental muscle that says "yes" to one thing and "no" to another. Drop judgement and opinions. Suspend both belief and disbelief. Welcome enlightened ignorance. Let your mind go for a swim in the sea of infinite possibilities. As springtime matures a new guiding vision will eventually materialize. But before that can happen you must create the space for that vision to emerge. Now is the time to awaken the field of "not knowing."


Practicing the Start of Spring empowerment on Friday, February 3rd between 10:34 AM EST and 12:34 PM EST will bring you into deeper alignment with the shifting cycles of the seasons and boost your energy level. (Remember to adjust for the time difference if you live in another time zone). Start of Spring lasts until Saturday, February 18th at 6:31 AM EST when Rain Water, the next phase begins. Until then, knock down the conceptual walls inside your head and drink from the wellspring of possibilities that resides within.



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

STEP 1: LOCATE L2


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 Lumbar 2 (L2) in the lower back.

Begin by identifying your iliac crest, the topmost part of your hips, and trace a straight line to your spine. That vertebra is L4. Two up is L2.

Find L2 now.



















STEP 2: SPINAL MEDITATION

(You can practice this empowerment every day until the next Jieqi, but the golden time is on Friday, February 3rd between 10:34 AM - 12:34 PM EST)


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 L2. Exhale and visualize L2 glowing brightly. Continue this breathing patterns 36 times.
  3. Then, inhale, focus on L2, exhale and visualize the light from L2 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.

STEP 3: SPINAL MOVEMENT EXERCISE

(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, both hands pressing on your left thigh.
  2. Inhale as you turn your head and then your upper body to the right. Hold your breath as you look at the floor behind you for a few seconds. Then exhale as you return to the starting position.
  3. Then inhale as you turn your head and your upper body to the left. Hold your breath as you look at the floor behind you for a few seconds. Then exhale as you return to the starting position.
  4. Repeat steps 1 - 3 a total of 36 times.
  5. Swoosh your tongue around your mouth until it is full of saliva. Then, swallow the saliva, and send the energy of your saliva down to your Lower Dantian. Repeat three times.

Enjoy your practice!