The Meridian System

Nourish your body, mind and spirit by understanding
the meridian system of your body

Traditional Chinese medicine recognises a subtle energy system which circulates throughout the body. The Chinese call this subtle energy Qi or Chi which translates as "breaths".

Qi or chi is a fundamental concept of the traditional oriental medicine and is considered as our "life essence" or "life energy" which maintains and nurtures our physical body, mind and spirit. The Japanese calls this life essence as ki. In traditional Indian medicine, it is described as prana.

Qi is everywhere, and is often characterized as energy. It moves and changes quickly from moment to moment and can easily be replenished on a day-to-day basis. The human body is a field of continually moving energy, circulating through cells, tissues, muscles and internal organs. Within the organ and meridian systems, energy is constantly being exchanged. Qi is a real force, made up of electric, magnetic, infrasonic and infra-red vibrations, which can be intuitively perceived and mentally directed. It can even be photographed using Kirlian photography.

In Qigong, it is believed energy circulates and nourishes the whole person through meridians or specific pathways. In Indian medicine, this is called a nadi or river. Meridians form a crisscross network of interconnected pathways that link the organs, skin, flesh, muscle and bones in a unified body. These channels run from deep in the organs out through major meridian branches to smaller and even smaller ones, ending up at the outside of the body in the skin into major body systems such as the nervous and blood systems. When you are healthy, the flow of qi proceeds unimpeded, like the water in a free-running river, and energy is well distributed throughout the meridian pathways. When the river, or meridian, is blocked for some reason, the qi is prevented from reaching the specific area it is supposed to nurture. The result is that the cells, tissue or organs in the affected area suffer.

Because the meridians serve the whole body from outside in and inside out, they have a dual role. They prevent harmful energies from the body entering (in the form of bacteria and viruses). They also indicate the presence of harmful energy already inside the body in the form of symptoms on the outside. (Kirlian photography is often able to indicate this).These may be felt as aches, pains, heat or cold.

Any type of "disease" is a sign that the energy within the meridian system is out of balance. When a meridian is blocked, one part of the body is getting too much qi and enters a state of excess, while another part is getting too little and becomes deficient in qi. This will result in one organ becoming overactive while another organ will become underactive and may be fatigued. If you do not correct this problem when initially manifested, it can lead to the symptoms getting progressively worse and your disease gets more serious.

There are a variety of practices you can do to experience qi and feel its effect on your body like Qigong exercises. Like air that we depend on for our life, qi is the very source of our vitality. It is the force within us which gives us initiative, which drives and inspires us to move forward in life. When the qi leaves us, we die.



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