The origins of CM stem from the Daoist philosophy which involves the concept of Yin and Yang. Traditionally Daoism involved the theory of people interacting within their environment.
Yin and Yang
Most of us are familiar with the Yin and Yang symbol. Yin and Yang represent the concept of balance and duality. Yin is indicated by white and yang is black. You will notice the nature of Yin and Yang being where one is in abundance the other is less, each side always containing a small portion of the other. A classic example of this is day and night. As the sun rises in the morning the night slowly turns into day. As the day gathers its momentum and is at its fullest, it is always moving towards sun set where night will encroach on the day and the cycle will continue.
The balance of Yin and Yang can be related to the human body in many ways.
Yang represents qualities such as movement, heat and day time.
Yin are the opposite, cool, rest and night.
An example of Yin & Yang can apply to our health is, Yin represents qualities such as rest, passiveness or recuperation. As Yin is “cool”, our bodies cool down while we sleep and our organs rest. If the metabolism is overactive because we have consumed to much alcohol or spicy food, heat at night may occur, heat is Yang in quality which means our sleep and rest will be affected.
Qi is an important concept of CM. Qi represents systems in the body working properly and thereby supporting health. Freely flowing oxygenated blood, healthy nerve activity and functional organs all represent healthy Qi. The vitality or strength of Qi represents the constitutional health of a person. If the Qi is strong it will be able to nourish the organ system, the brain and all other structures of the body. Stress or lots or bad lifestyle choices, can weaken or block Qi. This could weaken an organ’s function or create pain and inflammation. If prolonged, Qi and blood stagnation will eventually create an imbalance in the body; according to Chinese medicine this is said to be the origin of disease or ill health.