Oriental medicine

Traditional Oriental medicine is the amalgamation of many systematic techniques and methods. These include Acupuncture, Herbal medicines, Acupressure, Cupping, Moxibustion , Qigong, Nutrition and dietetics and Oriental massage techniques. Besides this it also bear similarity towards the Tibetan Style of Medicine.

While medicinal techniques in the west worked on the principal of separating the mind body and soul, eastern medicine took into account the whole person in relation to nature. The most striking characteristic of Oriental medicine is its emphasis on diagnosing disturbances of qi (pronounced “chee”), or vital energy, in health and disease. Even Oriental medicine believes that all disease result from the disharmony of vital energy. The most striking characteristic of Oriental medicine is its emphasis on diagnosing disturbances of qi (pronounced “chee”), or vital energy, in health and disease. Even Oriental medicine believes that all disease result from the disharmony of vital energy. Diagnosis in Oriental medicine involves the classical procedures of observation, listening, questioning, and palpation, including feeling the quality of the pulses and the sensitivity of various body parts. The well-trained physician is taught to use all procedures together in evaluating the patient and to search for details of habit, lifestyle, nutritional indulgence, and specific mediating circumstances. Physical and emotional aspects of health are assumed to be interrelated; for example, fullness of the lungs is said to produce dreams of sorrow and weeping. A range of traditional therapies is described to correct physical symptoms, restore energetic balance, and redirect and normalize the patient.

It involves the direct manipulation of the network of energetic meridians, which are believed to connect not only with the surface or structural body parts but also to influence the deeper internal organs. The needle is inserted at appropriately chosen energetic points to disperse or activate the qi by a variety of technical manipulations. Western-style research shows that acupuncture can relieve pain and cause surgical analgesia through the release of pain-inhibiting chemicals (endorphins) in the nervous system. Moxibustion Moxibustion using Artemisia vulgaris (a plant of the composite, or daisy, family) evolved in early times in northern China. In this cold, mountainous region, the effect of heating the body on the energetically active points was a logical development. The crushed leaves, or moxa, of vulgaris may be used in loose or cigar form. The burning from the moxa releases a radiant heat that penetrates deeply and is used to affect the balance and flow of qi.


Works on the same principals as acupuncture but does not involve the use of needles. The energy points and channels can be treated with direct physical pressure by the fingertips or hands of the therapist. Simple points may be used for first aid or symptomatic relief or entire systems of manual therapy (e.g., shiatsu, jin shin jyutsu) may be used to affect the overall well-being of the body. Remedial massage. The techniques of remedial massage (an-mo and tuina) are described in medical texts of the Han period. Later, in the Tang dynasty, massage was taught in special institutes. An-mo tones the system using pressing and rubbing hand motions, while tuina soothes and sedates using thrusting and rolling hand motions. Both systems employ a complex series of hand movements called the eight kua on specific body areas to produce the desired effects, Cupping.

Cupping is a technique of applying suction over selected points or zones in the body. A vacuum is created by warming the air in a jar of bamboo or glass and overturning it onto the body to disperse areas of local congestion. This therapy is especially effective in the treatment of arthritis, bronchitis, and sprains, among other ailments. Qigong.

Qigong is the art and science of using breath, movement, and meditation to cleanse, strengthen, and circulate the vital life energy and blood. Three basic principles are observed in the performance of the exercises: relaxation and repose; associated with breathing with concentration; the interaction of movement and rest.

Tai chi and other practices of Oriental physical culture emphasize maintaining internal and external balance while encountering one’s environment. Certain of the qigong exercises, particularly the goulin form, have been used for immune stimulation and self-help in cancer patients. These personal practices are the “internal” qigong type. Certain qigong “masters” are considered to be “energetic healers,” who via “external” qigong use some of their own energy to strengthen the vitality of others who have ailments. Herbal medicine.

There is a complex series of practices regarding the preparation and administering of herbs in Chinese medicine. The traditional materia medica in China included approximately 3,200 herbs and 300 mineral and animal extracts. Herbal prescriptions cover the entire range of medical ailments, including pain, hormone disturbances, breathing disorders, infections, and chronic debilitating illnesses. Medications are classified according to their energetic qualities (e.g. heating, cooling, moisturizing, drying) and prescribed for their action on corresponding organ dysfunction, energy disorders, disturbed internal energy, blockage of the meridians, or seasonal physical demands. Such prescriptions are systematically compounded to have several effects: to principally affect the disease or disharmony, to balance out any potential side effects of the principal therapy, and to direct the therapy to a specific area or a physical process in the body. Nutrition and dietetics. Dietary interventions are also individualized on the basis of the physical characteristics of both the patient’s constitution and the patient’s illness disturbance. Foods are characterized according to their energetic qualities (e.g., tonifying, dispersing, heating, cooling, moistening, drying). Emphasis is given to eating in harmony with seasonal shifts and life activities. TIBETAN MEDICINE Tibetan medicine firmly believes that every aspect of our mind body and soul is interrelated. How does our mind influence our health? Tibetan medicine firmly believes that every aspect of our mind body and soul is interrelated.

How does our mind influence our health? In Tibetan medicine this is discussed under three groups -that of Desire, greed sexual passion, anger ranging from frustration to real hate, and ignorance, ranging from thick mental torpor to ignorance of the innate purity of mind. These three areas are the three poisons. The three poisons have many subcategories and states of mind which contain elements – such complex things as jealousy,. In the long term a predominance of desire, attachments, frustrated longings etc. will create an imbalance in the physical system known as “wind humor”. Wind is the dynamic quality within the various physical systems. When the wind-humor is in harmony, the digestion, the nervous system, the blood flow etc. are all working fluidly. A long-term predominance of anger will create imbalance in the “bile humor”. It is not only just the physical bile or the gall bladder but also the production of heat and energy in the body, especially through the ingestion and transformation of nourishment. A long-term predominance of ignorance will create imbalance in the “phlegm humor”. This particularly concerns the fluid balances in the body and its coolness. The widespread application of this wonderful healing science by dedicated physicians was the status quo in Tibet for more than a thousand years.

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