Tuesday, August 6, 2013

A Young Mind On Ancient Therory

By Shoshanna H.

                When enrolling at Alaska Institute I was very aware of the eastern influence within the curriculum. I could have assumed what that would have meant, most likely come up with answer regarding Tai Chi and oneness with the universe. I wouldn’t have been wrong to say that but I wouldn’t have been 100% correct either.
                In attending Alaska Institute we’ve covered many topics ranging in diverse directions. The basics of the human body were giving in anatomy and physiology in the first courses of the program. While it’s hard for me to believe that a majority of people enjoy their core classes, there is a feeling of accomplishment in knowing you’ve learned something, which is what I got out of it. These core classes were essential for continuing this educational process. Upon completion of anatomy and physiology this got exciting and new foreign methods were introduced to me.  
               Theory of yin and yang became to mean more to me then opposition. I now understand it’s a complete balance of everything, from day to night, from winter to summer. Yin is passive in nature and yang is aggressive. There is harmony with yin in yang when they they are equal yet separate shedding light on the other lacks creating wholeness.
               After grasping yin and yang we slammed right into Chinese five element theory which to be honest I’m not the best at. Listed below are some key concepts to know.
Qi pronounces chi is an active principle forming part of any living thing. Qi is frequently translated as "life energy", "life force energy".
Meridian also called channel is a traditional Chinese medicine belief that qi flows through. There are twelve main meridians in the body which are heart, pericardium, spleen, lungs, kidneys, liver, small Intestine, triple heater, stomach, large intestine, urinary bladder, and gall bladder.
               Five Element Theory is one of the most popular theories of Traditional Chinese Medicine. This theory helps people understand how natural changes within body and outside environment affect people’s health. The five elements are wood, fire, earth, metal and water. They were selected based on the observations of ancient oriental philosophers who conceived that the natural world embodied these elemental characteristics. Oriental Medicine uses this time-tested, diagnostic model to evaluate how the various parts of a person's body and mind interact to affect health. A general list of relations to the elements are seen below.

            Qi, meridians and the five element theory is the base of traditional oriental medicine. This knowledge is not only practical to a massage therapist in assessing clinics in how to incorporate energy movement.  I can also apply this to my own self cultivation, as in when I feel angry for no logical reasons that I know of I can work on letting my wood element flow by wearing the color green and applying pressure to my liver and gallbladder meridians while focusing on the qi moving through the channel. Life, this world and the universe is full of patterns and balances, I’m just ecstatic that ancient Chinese philosophers figured all this out long ago, so that Alaska Institute has full knowledge to teach me.

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