When I’m asked to talk about TCM with large groups, I sometimes start with a joke. I tell them it’s hard to condense five thousand years of wisdom into an hour-long discussion, but I’ll try. Here, I will review some basic principles and theories of this unique medical system. First, the Miracle of Qi.
Most religions speak about oneness. Modern science, of course, tells us there is only oneness. For thousands of years, traditional Chinese medicine has practiced oneness. An ancient saying reminds us, “There are many ways up the mountain.” So, it depends on which path you’d like to follow to understand this concept. No matter what, we have to begin with the fundamental concept that everything is energy. Both TCM and modern science agree: We are energy beings and exist within the electromagnetic energy field. It’s impossible to say anything about TCM without first talking about Qi (pronounced chee).
What is Qi? Put simply, Qi is the source of Universal life. Without Qi, there is no animating life force in this reality. Basically, everything is Qi. Every object in our world is comprised of Qi, or energy. As living entities, each of us uses Universal Qi to express ourselves. Every element of our world is an aspect or piece of Universal Qi. Our bodies are individuations of Universal Qi and each of us uses this conscious, loving intelligence to achieve our own purpose.
While on earth, our unbreakable connection to this energy means each of us is a child of the Universe. And, it’s not only the human form that is connected to Universal Qi. The entire Universe, its untold galaxies, planets and cosmic structures are also part of Universal Qi. The earth itself has Universal life force running through it. Through Natural Law, earth shows proof of the unconditional love of Universal consciousness. Your physical form too is a manifestation this force. Modern science has discovered today what TCM has known for millennia: It’s all energy; everything is energy.
The concept of Qi is at the heart of TCM. With thousands of years of direct observation and experience of Qi through spiritual technologies, TCM has a unique understanding of Qi: how it moves and functions within the body, how it moves throughout Nature, and how its motions govern the vast Universe itself. TCM’s expertise in helping Qi function makes it a profoundly effective healing system.
In the West, Qi is typically translated as power or animating force, but this is not a complete explanation. Think of Qi like a coin—one coin with two sides. Force or power is only one side of the coin. The other encompasses conscious, aware intelligence that gives Qi direction and purpose. The body’s meridian network is a conduit for connecting to Universal Qi. Have you ever wondered what kind of intelligence allows the ebb and flow of tides to keep pace with the lunar cycle? How a tree knows to sprout leaves on time every spring? Do you wonder how your body knows automatically how to experience seasonal transitions and adjust its internal rhythms? Qi allows all things to communicate with each other; it carries an infinite amount of messages and information. Qi connects all things and all dimensions.
We can say Qi is. Qi is Life in motion. Without its dynamic intelligence, nothing would be able to fulfill the requirements of Natural Law. There would be no birth, no growth or change, and no transformation from one state of being to the next. You cannot exist for even one second without Qi; it directs your conscious and unconscious actions. Think about this: When you die, your physical parts still remain. What’s missing? It’s Qi! The organizing spirit housed in your body over your lifespan has “left the building.” When you die, Qi leaves—it’s transformed.
When we understand Qi’s transformational qualities from the TCM perspective, it becomes evident nothing is unmovable, unworkable, or permanent. In our world of three dimensions, Qi mirrors the continuing flow of Universal energy. If everything outside of us can flow, then everything inside of us can move as well. Every condition has the potential to heal. Healing miracles happen when energy is transformed; however, the requirements for this kind of change have to be met. Qigong, a spiritual energy practice, offers one way to meet these requirements.
This excerpt was taken from Grand Master Lu’s latest book, Digesting the Universe, A Revolutionary Framework for Healthy Metabolism Function. Get your copy here.