Dronas electro inspekcijai
The philosophy ‘Better to live a day as a tiger than a lifetime as a sheep’ expressed by Tippo Sahib, the warrior ruler of Mysore, is definitely not theirs. Their ‘anything for a quiet life’ mentality means that they become a pushover for anybody more determined, self-righteous or assertive. This attitude inevitably leads to the mentality of the
The goal of the practitioner is to achieve equilibrium between all the Elements. In the Ling Shu it says: ‘The principles of needling dictate that needling should stop as soon as qi is brought into harmony’
It is necessary to promote the flow of qi and blood according to the laws of mutual victories among the Five Elements in order to strike a balance among them and bring about peace.
Wood Fire Earth Metal Water Colour green red yellow white blue Sound shouting laughing singing weeping groaning Emotion anger joy sympathy/worry grief fear Odour rancid scorched fragrant rotten putrid Season spring summer late summer autumn/fall winter Climate wind heat humidity dryness cold Taste sour bitter sweet pungent salty Power growth maturity harvest decrease storage
For many Daoists and Naturalists virtually no distinction was made between the nature of the seasons, the climate resonant with each season and the cyclical changes taking place in the human, animal and vegetable worlds. In plants the never-ending cycle of growth, flowering, harvest, decline and storing informed them of the differing qualities of each season. The behaviour of animals and humans in each season was also seen to be governed by the same laws. Men have no choice but to go by this succession; officials have no choice but to operate according to these powers. For such are the calculations of heaven. (Tung Chung-shu, –135; quoted in
Element is a process, movement or quality of qi, not a fixed ‘building block’ (Rochat, 2009, p. 13; Kaptchuk, 2000 , p. 437; Maciocia, 1989, p. 15; Needham, 1956 , p. 244).
Five Elements outlined this emphasis on the different qualities of the Elements. Water is that quality in Nature which we describe as soaking and descending. Fire which we describe as blazing and uprising. Wood which permits of curved surfaces or straight edges. Metal which can follow the form of a mould and then becomes hard. Earth which permits of sowing, growth and reaping. (Shu Ching, –4th century; quoted
Summary 1 In the Han dynasty (−202 to +220) Chinese medicine came to be based on a study of the processes of nature and how they are manifested in human beings. 2 Qi is the insubstantial matter that underlies everything that is manifest. 3 For the early Daoists, little distinction was made between the qi of Heaven and Earth and of Humanity. 4 Humanity forms a bridge between Heaven and Earth. 5 Humanity alone possesses the ‘Three Treasures’. Animals possess jing and qi , but only humans have the gift of Heaven, shen.
On the one hand, people have a physical body that needs to be fed from the fruits of the Earth, just as all animals and living things do. On the other hand, people possess a connection to Heaven, which requires a different type of nourishment. This gives them the wonder of human consciousness and the human spirit. As well as taking care of the body, the writers of the Nei Jing emphasised the idea that the health of the human spirit is central to people’s passage through life. They must strive to cultivate their connection with Heaven in order to fulfil their destiny ( ming ). The Huainanzi sums up the Han dynasty Daoist view: Heaven is calm and clear, Earth is stable and peaceful. Beings who lose these qualities die, while those who emulate them live. (Cleary, 2000, p. 24)
produces and completes the 10,000 beings. It is nothing but the exchange between the yin and yang and then the luminous radiance of the spirits ( shen ming ). In order to be alive, mankind needs the combination of yin and yang qi , the union of the essences ( jing ) of the father and mother. Two essences combine, the physical form and the spirits are then completed, uniting the qi of heaven and earth, and giving mankind.
‘Three Treasures’ ( san bao ), jing, qi and shen
Jing , or Essence – our constitutional and ‘physical’ energy – is what we inherit from our parents. We now know that we share 99.4% of our genes with our closest relatives, the higher primates.
These primal instincts are largely carried in our jing. They play an important role in how we live our lives. A substantial amount of human suffering and illness results from imbalances in these drives.
Qi we share with all matter in the universe or the ‘ten thousand things’ ( wan wu ). Qi literally gives us our life and our vitality.
Shen , or spirit, is the treasure we do not share with animals. Animals possess jing and qi , but they do not possess shen. Shen is bestowed on us from Heaven and gives humanity its glory and human consciousness. That is why humanity is ‘the most precious thing in the universe’ ( Xunzi
In the Huainanzi it says that: ‘The gross qi becomes animals, the subtle qi becomes Man’ ( Major, 1993 ). The Three Treasures therefore reflect the Heaven, Humanity and Earth concept. Jing, which gives us our biological link with the other animals, is linked with Earth. Qi is what we share with all the ‘ten thousand things’, and shen is humanity’s unique gift from Heaven. The relationship between these ‘treasures’ and yin and yang is shown in Table 1.1 . Table 1.1 The Three Treasures in relation to Heaven, Earth and Humanity Heaven yang shen Humanity yin / yang qi Earth yin jing The great physician Zhang Jiebin succinctly expressed the relationship between the Dao, nature
Heaven yang shen
Humanity yin / yang qi
Earth yin jing
Humans stand between Heaven and Earth Heaven arose out of the accumulation of yang qi , the Earth arose out of the accumulation of yin qi . ( Taisu ; Unschuld, 1992, p. 283) Humanity was regarded as forming a bridge between Heaven and Earth. This is usually expressed in the phrase ‘Heaven ( tian ), Earth ( di ) and Man ( ren )’. The same immutable laws were seen to unite everything in nature, from the movement of the stars to small cyclical changes in the plant and animal world. Each person was regarded as a microcosm of the universe, their qi resonating with the qi of Heaven and Earth (Chapter 71 of the Ling Shu is largely devoted to this theme). Needham (1956, p. 300) quotes Wang Kubei as saying: ‘The human body imitates Heaven and Earth very distinctly and exactly.’ Chuang Tse, the great Daoist sage, also stressed the resonance between humanity and the world outside. Changes in the season or climate were bound to induce changes in the qi of the person: ‘Heaven exists inside, Man exists outside’ ( Merton, 1970 , Chapter 17 ). This micro/macrocosm concept is also to be found in the Huainanzi , Chapter 7 . A person’s place in the natural order, therefore, is to form the bridge between the yang of Heaven and the yin of Earth. As it says in the Huainanzi : The vital spirit belongs to Heaven, the physical body belongs to Earth: when the vital spirit goes home and the physical body returns to its origin, where then is the self?