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Oriental Pharmacy and Experimental Medicine
Volume 02 - 2002
Date: 2002

Journal: Pages 1-16

Fbruary 2002 | Brief view of chi and alternative therapy…

Min-Sik Shin



​Chi (Qi) : Major life force in our bodies The ancient Oriental doctor perceived the humanbeings as a microcosmos within the universe.They imagined the human being as a part of oneunbroken wholeness, called Tao, a singularrelational continuum. Oriental medical thinkingdeveloped with a focus in the relationship of thehuman being and nature. And so the system ofexamination, diagnosis and treatment for Orientalmedicine is based on the body-mind-spirit.The concept of human health then follows lawsinherent in the flow of the life ‘Energy (Chi)’inherent in nature. The existence of humanity and,in fact, all of nature is dependent upon this Chi(Qi). It is only by Chi that the planets move, thewind blows and the elements exist. It is only by Chithat human beings live and breathe. When Chi isflowing, all of life's processes are in operation in arhythmic and harmonious way. The Chi energy isthe vital force in all of life, and the Tao is the pathand method to sustain the pure Chi energy.In watching the universe, the ancient Chinesesaw that this energy could be spoken of in adualistic way, a kind of brothersister team which iscalled Yin and Yang. In reality these two are onebut one of the forces may be more or less apparentat a certain time. For instance, when night is uponus, we do not at that moment experience the day,and yet the day emerges from the night. We tend tothink of either one or the other of force existing,rather than of both being present with one aspectmanifesting more than the other at a givenmoment. Yin-Yang is not a dialectic of oppositesclashing. It is the unity of two aspects of Chi energywhose continual movement revolves in a constantinterplay of balance and harmony.Like Yin and Yang, the five elements are furtherdescriptions of the Chi energy as it goes through itscyclical transformations. Everything in life is madeup of a mixture of these elements being wood, fire,earth, metal and water. All phenomena of theuniverse contain the energies of Yin and Yangthrough which the cause of ailment and the use ofnatural food and herbal medicines can beexplained.

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