If You Want Radiant Health...Traditional Chinese Tonic Herbs Can Change Your Life!
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The principle of Yin and Yang is the fundamental concept of the Chinese healthcare system. Within our bodies, our hearts beat, our lungs breathe, our glands secrete hormones, and our bowels and bladder excrete waste rhythmically, according the fundamental principle of the law of Yin and Yang. Our eyes each dominate for several minutes at a time, rhythmically. Indeed, virtually every human function follows rhythmic (cyclic) patterns. These rhythms are described and explained by the Great Principle, the principle of Yin and Yang.
Yin is defined as that part of a cycle in which energy is being accumulated, assimilated and stored for later use. Yang is defined as that part of a cycle in which energy is being expended in order to create a manifest action. One cannot exist without the other as they are each part of the one whole.
Thus Yin is often associated with rest, receptivity, quietude and rejuvenation, while Yang is associated with action, expansion and movement. Yin should not be thought of as the simple absence of Yang. Nor should it be automatically associated with weakness. Yin is in fact the very substance of life, and it is absolutely essential to all functioning. Yang on the other hand is the functional aspect of any process and is also essential to life.
Yin and Yang are relative concepts, and they always exist together. They are different aspects of the same thing or process, two sides of the same coin. In the human being, the body is more Yin and the psyche is more Yang because the body is condensed energy whereas the mind is freer and infinitely more active. The back of the body is more Yang and the front is more Yin because the back is strong and protects the more vulnerable anterior, Yin, parts. It can be noted that all arteries that flow close to the surface do so on the Yin (anterior) surface of the body. When we are under attack, we curl up so as to protect these vital vessels and the Yang parts of our body protect the softer Yin parts. The upper parts of the body are more Yang and the lower parts more Yin because heat (Yang) tends to rise and water (Yin) tends to sink. In addition, the surface of the body is considered to be Yang while the deep organs are categorized as Yin.
In Chinese Tonic herbalism, we utilize the principle of Yin and Yang constantly. All herbs are said to have either Yin or Yang qualities, to varying degrees. Some herbs are said to move upward or outward---these have a Yang quality. Some herbs are said to be drying, warm or hot--- these too are Yang. And there are herbs that affect the body profoundly and fundamentally to build up the Yang powers of the body, mind and spirit---these are the true Yang tonic herbs.
On the other hand, herbs that move downward or inward, and herbs that are moistening, cooling or anti-inflammatory, are said to be Yin in nature. Substances that nurture the true, fundamental reserves of the body, mind and spirit are called Yin tonics.
Yin and Yang are often associated with the female and male forces. This association has its value, but in many ways serves to confuse students of Oriental philosophy until a deep understanding has been attained. Relative to one another, the female is often said to be more Yin than the male, which is generally more outgoing and is therefore more Yang. The female is said to be receptive and nourishing while the male is said to be aggressive and protective. However, from person to person, it is easy to see that many women are more aggressive than many men. These women would be considered more Yang. And there are most certainly passive men who are relatively more Yin than even the average woman. Yin and Yang is a concept of relativity and each person must be looked at relatively. An aggressive person with a hot temper would be considered to be of a Yang nature irrespective of gender, and a cold, passive person would be considered relatively Yin irrespective of gender. A person who is dry (Yang) will need to increase their fluids and blood (Yin) and a person who has cold extremities (Yin) will need to invigorate their blood circulation (Yang) in order to establish a healthy, balanced physiology.
The relationship of Yin and Yang is never static. The two forces are always vying with one another for dominance. First one dominates, then the other in its appropriate time. Under normal circumstances, the interaction of the two forces will remain within well-defined limits. Yin provides sustenance for the Yang and the Yang protects the Yin while carrying out the functions of the being. Neither Yin nor Yang will normally go to such an extreme that its opposing force cannot recover. However, if for some reason Yin or Yang exceeds the limits normally inherent in the system, the self-regulatory mechanism breaks down and crisis ensues. Health is dependent upon the maintenance of the correct balance of Yin and Yang forces in the body and psyche. Neither Yin nor Yang should increase or decrease beyond normal limits. It is possible through the application of Chinese Tonic herbalism to help the body-mind to maintain its self-regulatory capacity, assuring optimum functioning and 'radiant health.'
One's basic physical constitution plays a very important role in one's long term health pattern. A person born with a dominance of Yang energy is said to have a 'Yang constitution.' These fundamentally Yang people often tends to suffer from Yang symptoms throughout much of their lives. Conversely, a person born with a Yin constitution generally suffers from Yin symptoms. Yang symptoms tend to be more acute and more dramatic, but also tend to be overcome more quickly, whereas Yin symptoms tend to be chronic, mysterious and difficult to correct. It is important to take a frank look at one's constitution and to come to an understanding of how it affects one's life as a whole. It is possible to alter one's constitution to some small but significant degree by the use of Chinese herbs, diet, breathing and exercise, and by stimulating certain acu-points regularly for an extended period of time.