Small has no inside big has no outside

Nowadays many scientists spend a lot of their nation's money trying to extend the frontiers of knowledge. They want to know what is 'on the inside'. They have broken things down into molecules, atoms and electrons, smaller and smaller particles, and even sub-atomic particles. Each time they think they have found the smallest 'thing', they find another even smaller. And each time they look they find something different. It is as though these things create themselves. Modern scientists spend their working lives trying to discover new things such as the smallest or the biggest. But four thousand years ago the Chinese said in the YiJing, 'Small has no inside, big has no outside', and also: 'From nothing comes something.'

I do not know much about science, but I do know my culture Chinese culture, which has survived for thousands of years. The principles of Yin and Yang, the Wu Xing, Five Elements, and Bagua tell us the principles of the universe. I call it 'Chinese Science' and, like Chinese medicine, it is totally different from that of the West. We use herbs which come from the earth, which is where we all come from. We use acupuncture, moxibustion and massage to stimulate different areas of the body to keep it balanced, and we practise Qigong to keep ourselves healthy, strong and vital.

We know everything must be natural. This is different from the way the West thinks. The scientists keep looking for the smallest things only to find something smaller inside, so then they look for the biggest things only to keep finding bigger things... So they go on and on and never stop, but they miss the principle of the universe and the relationship between big and small: 'Small has no inside, big has no outside.' What is small? What is big? It is only when you put them together that one is big and one is small.

If we understand Yin and Yang we know that if we see one side' then there must be another to balance it, otherwise it cannot exist (unless it is the centre). There is only one centre which is steady and stable -for example, we have only one nose and one mouth, which are at the centre of the face, but we have a pair of eyes and a pair of ears, which are not at the centre.

We live on a planet and we know that we are not at the centre of the universe. So this means there must be some other planet the same as ours in the universe, because we exist according to the principle of Yin and Yang. By developing this principle, and dividing it by two, we get the 'four images' as follows:

The Yin Yang Symbol

Yin Yang Inside Triangle

Together with the centre (which connects them all together) they become the Five Elements. So if one day you see a UFO or if we discover another human planet, don't be suprised!

Yin &

Yang

Cold

Hot

W ater

Fire

Soft

Hard

Dark

Light

Wood

Metal

Mother

Father

Near

Wood, fire, earth, metal and water represent the Five Elements. Wood and metal form a pair: wood is Yin, soft, natural and gathering; metal is Yang, hard, polished and separating. Fire and water are another pair: water is Yin, soft, cold and flowing; fire is Yang, strong, hot and damaging. Earth is the centre, connecting all the elements, but does not belong to any of them. So earth is described as soft and wet (soil) in its Yin side, and hard and solid (rock) in its Yang side.

THE FIVE ELEMENTS AND THE DIRECTIONS

The Five Elements 'cover' the whole world. Wood represents the East, Metal the West, while Fire stands for the South and Water for the North. Earth is the centre.

The East gets the sun before the West, and so more trees and plants grow in the East. The West gets the sun later, so the West creates more minerals, metal and iron. The South is hot and the North cold.

Earth

South i Fire ^

South i Fire ^

THE FIVE ELEMENTS AND THE INTERNAL ORGANS

The five elements are also associated with the five major organs that keep the entire body balanced -the liver, lungs, heart, kidneys and spleen. The main organs are all Yin and solid. They pair and work closely with the Yang organs which are hollow.

Wood is connected with the liver, and the liver with the gall bladder -they are like brothers. When you have a liver problem your face and eyes will turn green and your skin will become dry like wood. Your face will turn a greenish colour because the liver is connected with the circulation and when the liver or gall bladder is in poor condition the normal red colour of the blood will become lighter, thus turning to somewhere between green and yellow.

Metal is connected with the lungs, which are related to the large intestine. When you suffer from a lung problem it will make you cough and your face will turn white (pale) and shiny as it might if you were out of breath, after running. Also your breathing will make a noise-like metal.

Fire connects with the heart. Its brother is the small intestine. When you have a heart problem or high blood pressure your face will go red and your body temperature will go up -hot like fire.

Water connects with the kidneys, whose brother is the urinary bladder. When you have a kidney problem or backache your face will turn a dark colour and your hands and feet will feel cold -like water. (The true colour of water is transparent, clear, but when you look at the sea it is a deep blue or closer to black.)

Earth connects to the spleen and its brother is the stomach. When you have a stomach problem, such as a stomach ache, you will feel movement inside and your stomach will make a noise. Your face will turn brown like soil and your stomach will move like an earthquake. For more on colour, see page 48.

THE FIVE ELEMENTS AND THE EMOTIONS

We are connected emotionally with the Five Elements. When you have a liver problem you will feel angry, and need to shout. By shouting you release the negative energy blocking the liver.

The Five Elements

WOOD

FIRE

EARTH

METAL

WATER

Liver

Heart

Spleen

Lung

Kidney

Gall Bladder

Small Intestine

Stomach

Large Intestine

Urinary Bladder

Green

Red/Orange

Yellow /Brown

White/Gold

Blue/Black

Shouting

Laughing

Singing/Talking

Weeping

Groaning

Anger

Joy

Over-Thinking

Sorrow, Sad

Fear

(Love, Warm)

(Stable)

(Decision)

(Happiness)

(Power and Will)

Deer

Bird

Monkey

Tiger

Bear

Sour

Bitter

Sweet

Spicy

Salty

Rancid

Scorched

Fragrant

Rotten

Putrid

Spring

Summer

Long Summer

Autumn

Winter

Tendon

Pulse

Muscle

Skin and Hair

Bone

Eye

Tongue

Mouth

Nose

Ear

Life

. Gas

Compound

Solid

Liquid

East

South

Centre

West

North

Birth

Growth

Conversation

Gathering

Storage

Three

Two

Five

Four

One

When you have a heart problem your body is under pressure because your blood pressure is high. You will soon become over-excited and start laughing. Laughing releases the negative energy, easing the pressure on your heart but if you laugh too much, it can cause more pressure again on your heart.

When your stomach has a problem you may quickly start to worry about things and lose your appetite -or you may react in the opposite way and start to eat a lot. You like to talk to people, because talking helps you to release the negative energy and balances your stomach.

If you have a lung problem it will make you feel sad or depressed. This makes you cry easily -even just watching a sad TV programme or hearing about someone else's problem makes you cry, because crying helps you to release the te;nsion (negative energy) from your lungs. Also, when you catch cold, the blockage in the lungs and chest will cause coughing to release the tension.

When you suffer from a kidney problem it will also affect your back. You will experience pain and feel tired. Emotionally you will feel insecure or scared. This makes you complain or moan to others or groan to yourself. But this groaning releases the negative energy from your kidneys.

From observing emotions, from how someone reacts to others and the colour of their face or even their palms, you can see which organs are causing problems. So if you find your boss likes to shout at you, forgive him (or her) as he may be suffering from a liver problem and is perhaps just releasing his negative energy. Of course, it is not good to shout at others as they will take on your negative energy. It is better to go outside on your own and shout at the trees, mountains or sea, because they can stand it. (In some Qigong practice we use sounds to strengthen the internal organs.)

Some people go to discos and dance until three or four in the morning. They think they are full of energy; actually it is not energy but over-excitement, which will affect the heart. If someone in the East is healthy and full of energy he will be calm and relaxed, he will smile and feel secure. Western people's attitude is different: if they do a lot of work, laugh a lot and are very active, they call themselves 'energetic'. In fact they are using a lot of energy, and the day might come when all that energy has been burnt out and they then become ill. Save your energy is the best advice.

Consider the Chinese interpretation of people's behaviour. You might find that a friend of yours likes to talk and eat a lot. Maybe his behaviour arises from worry caused by a stomach problem. A lot of people like to sympathise with others and cry easily in bad situations. To me, this shows that their lungs are weak. In hospital you will find many people groaning in their beds, insecure, scared of the dark and of the unknown. This is because their kidneys are weak and their energy is low.

A balanced person, however, can cope if his domestic situation or his job changes. A balanced person's mind is calm and he or she is not readily attracted by advertisements and the 'glossy things' of life. He likes nature, and knows how to relax and use his energy. The character of a healthy person is entirely different from that of an unhealthy person. A healthy person can do his job well and will be successful. Unhealthy people lose their jobs very frequeptly and change their situations very quickly because of their energy. Good energy can attract good people and opportunity to you. Bad energy attracts bad people and bad luck.

As you can see, the most important thing to know is how to get and stay healthy. You cannot just act healthy -you need to do something that will change your lifestyle and your character. The secret is daily Qigong practice.

Acupuncture points and channels

In the evening, when we go outside and look up, we can see crowds of sparkling stars spread allover the dark blue sky. What a wonderful picture they make. Each star has its own orbit in which it runs, keeping the whole universe balanced and the other stars in rhythm. This keeps us safe here on our planet: if. a 'major' star loses its rhythm, it will affect us. Maybe the effects will only be slight or maybe they will be important: perhaps there will be a time change - twenty-six or eighteen hours in a day instead of twenty-four. Such changes would affect our balance.

Our bodies are like the universe. We too are covered by many stars. Each star has its work to do and influences the whole body and its balance. These stars are our acupuncture points, and the orbits are our acupuncture channels.

The Acupuncture Points

Taiyang ' -Yintang ^ Baihui

Taiyang ' -Yintang ^ Baihui

Tai Yang Acupoint

Every acupuncture point belongs to a channel. Each channel has its own function in relation to the internal organs, nourishing and strengthening them. The acupuncture points keep the channels smooth and ensure that they are working well, bringing in the energy from outside to the body and releasing negative energy out through the skin. In Chinese medicine we say, 'Pain means it is not smooth. Smooth means there is no pain.' This is to do with the channels and acupuncture points working in the body. If you experience pain it means there is a problem. If you don't clear it up, you may become ill.

In China, we have many different ways of keeping the channels smooth and the acupuncture points open. One is massage, which involves person-to-person contact. It manipulates the muscles and acupuncture points, using the hands' Qi or energy to strengthen the organs and to give relief to painful areas. Acupuncturists insert needles into acupuncture points to get rid of the problem and keep the Qi flowing. Moxibustion applies 'burning heat' and medicine to the problem areas and acupuncture points. This heat strengthens the injured areas and brings up the energy. Herbs are used to treat different kinds of problems too. Herbs which grow in the earth belong to nature so they are good for balancing the body.

The last method is Qigong. This is the most effective way, because we ourselves do the exercises that relate to our acupuncture points and channels and build up the Qi to clear the problem. By doing Qigong you build up your resistance to cure the disease. Once it has been cured completely in this way, the Chinese say it will never come back again. Your body will have built up immunity.

'Exercise with energy'

The term Qigong is a combination of two words. The 'Qi' element (sometimes spelt 'Chi', the Cantonese way, or 'Ki', the Japanese way) is usually translated as 'energy'. I think the best way to understand Qi is to look at how the term came about. In Chinese culture rice is very important; today, as in the past, it is still the main ingredient in every meal. When we cook rice we first put it in the pot, then we add water and heat the pot up. After a while you will see steam rising up out of the rice. When the ancient Chinese people first saw this, they called it Qi.

Qi is therefore something you can see, something you can smell and something you can feel, but it has no shape and no form. We use the word Qi to describe anything that is related to feelings. For example the weather, which changes all the time and affects our emotions, we call 'sky-Qi'. The air, which we might smell and feel and which also affects our health, we call 'empty-Qi'. We say that people with good morals have 'bone-Qi'. And when you are tired, we say you have 'No spirit and no Qi'. If after a meal at a Chinese restaurant you want to tell them how good the food was, you can say, 'Very good wok-Qi!' Try it -the manager will be very pleased, and you may not have to pay!

So the word Qi is used to describe anything relating to 'feeling' or 'energy'. This is why it is so difficult to explain. In the Dao De ling, Lao Zi wrote that Dao cannot be defined -each time you want to

Heal Yourself With Qi Gong

Heal Yourself With Qi Gong

Qigong also spelled Ch'i Kung is a potent system of healing and energy medicine from China. It's the art and science of utilizing breathing methods, gentle movement, and meditation to clean, fortify, and circulate the life energy qi.

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