The ongoing coronavirus pandemic is a startling wake-up call to the entire human race. Although advances in science have enabled us to live more comfortably and conveniently than ever before, they have also caused us to rely too much on external remedies for our health and well-being. Nowadays, we often hide behind a wall of technology and chemicals to get better.
A basic principle in traditional Chinese medicine is illustrated in the following story told by the ancient philosopher Han Feizi 韩非子 (280-233 BCE):
The World Health Organization finally declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, 2020. Commonly referred to as "corona virus," Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2, of the genus beta-coronavirus, (SARS-CoV-2), is a newly identified strain of the beta-coronavirus family. COVID-19 is the name of the disease caused by the virus, SARS-CoV-2.
Perhaps you know the feeling, red, itching eyes, a runny nose, and sinus pressure. You’re sneezing, tired and really out of it. Sound familiar? That’s how I felt when seasonal allergies first hit me hard as a teenager. I was miserable and incapacitated.
Combining Western medical techniques with Traditional Chinese Medicine presents many challenges for practitioners. Working in combination mental health and pain management practice further complicates treatment choices. Many patients seeking help for psychological problems also have corresponding chronic physical ailments.
The existence of a universal life motivating energy is a basic cultural belief in China where it is called "Qi." In Japan where it is called "Ki," and in Hinduism where it is called "Prana." Curiously in the west it is largely disregarded, or generally thought to be illusory.
Spring is the season of new growth, of expansion, of birth and creativity. In the five element cycle this is the energy of wood. Spring is the time to reclaim our creative self. To be healthy our spirit must express itself in the world. In Oriental Medicine aspects of the soul or spirit are attributed to bodily centers.
While all forms of meditation can provide a state of quiescence, standing meditation offers the mutual benefit of calming the spirit and augmenting qi to strengthen physical constitution. Ancient Chinese masters developed specific meditations to effectively promote the movement of qi.
Congratulations! You made it through another winter! Now, the warmer temperatures and the longer hours of daylight will be an awesome relief. No more feeling like a hibernating bear cooped up inside your house you can go outside for lovely walks and appreciate the new life of spring...
Often times the Western-minded student of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has difficulty understanding fundamental concepts when they begin to learn TCM.