Traditional Chinese medicine is a very broad term as it includes countless medical practices, which have evolved in the past 2000 years. The most popular aspects of traditional Chinese medicine are:
– quigong – exercises
– tui na – massage
– herbal remedies
All of the above are meant to help regain harmonious body functions, which depend on the vital energy (chi) moving through meridians connected to different body parts.
Quigong – exercises, which coordinate body & mind through choreographed movements combined with deep breathing; can be static (holding different positions), dynamic (careful movements and martial arts like tai chi) or meditational.
Tui na – a vigorous massage, which focuses on the energy flows in the body; can be helpful not only to alleviate muscular pain but also other conditions as it stimulates meridian points, which correspond to different body functions.
Herbal remedies – based mostly on plant extracts or dried plants, such as ginseng root, which is well-known even in the West for its energising qualities.
Diet – related to particular physical constitution, yin & yang.
Acupuncture – penetration of skin by thin needles, which aim at specific points along the body; may be combined with cupping therapy or moxibustion.
Five Element Psychology
Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners claim that diseases are related to emotions. What is more, it is believed that particular organs correspond to different feelings.
Liver – Anger
Heart – Joy
Spleen – Worry
Lungs – Grief
Kidney – Fear
The five element psychology has its origin in the Five Element Theory, which has its equivalents under different names in many Asian cultures. The Chinese Five Element Theory is based on the assumption that there are specific connections between the following elements, which create or overcome each other: wood, fire, eath, metal, water.