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The Daily Enlightenment






History of Chinese Medicine (TCM) ZhongYi-Interview         


Roots (Historical Time-Line of Acupuncture)                                             

Acupuncture is a very ancient form of healing which  pre-dates recorded history. The philosophy is rooted in Taoist tradition. which goes back to over 8,000 years. The people of this period would meditate and observe the flow of energy within and without. They also were keen to observe man’s relations with nature and the universe. There were many stages of this period but the most legendary was Fu His, who lived in the Yellow River area of China approximately 8,000  years ago. By observing nature, he formulated the first two symbols, a broken line and an unbroken line. These symbols represented the two major forces in the universe - creation and reception - and how their interactions form life. This  duality was named Yin-Yang  and they represented the backbone of Chinese Medicine theory and application.  Fu His then discovered  that when Yin-Yang fuse, a creative action occurs and this gives birth to a third aspect Fu His then pondered on how this triplicity occurs eight times and this led to the eight trigrams and then sixty four hexagrams of the I-Ching (Book of Changes) 

The I-Ching shaped the thinking for years to come and every influential book on Chinese Medicine is based upon its fundamental philosophy.  The primitive society of China is divided into two time periods - The Old Stone Age (10,000 years ago and beyond) and the New Stone Age (10,000 - 4,000 years ago). During the Old Stone Age, knives were made out of stones and were used for certain medical procedures. During the New Stone Age, stones were refined into fine needles and serve as instrument of healing. They were named  BIAN STONE - which means the sharp edged stone to treat diseases. Many bian stone needles were excavated from ruins in China dating back to the New Stone Age.

 The most significant milestone in the history of Acupuncture occurred during the period of Huang Di - The Yellow Emperor (2697-2597). In the famous dialogue between Huang Di and his physician Qi Bo, they discuss the whole spectrum of the Chinese Medical Arts. These conversations would later become monumental text The Nei Jing ( The Yellow Emperor Classics of Internal Medicine). The Nei Jing is the earliest book written on Chinese Medicine. It was compiled around 305-204 BC, and consists of two parts:

1.       The Su Wen (Plain Questions) - 9 volumes - 81 chapters,  The Su Wen
 introduces anatomy and physiology, etiology of disease, pathology, diagnosis, differentiation of syndromes, prevention, Yin- Yang, five elements, treatments, and man’s relationship with cosmos.

2.       The Ling Shu (Miraculous Pivot, Spiritual Axis) - 81 chapters, The Ling 
Shu’s focus is Acupuncture, description of the meridians, functions of the 
Zang-Fu organs, nine types of needles, function of  acupuncture points, needling techniques, types of Qi, location of 160 points.

Nan Jing (Classics of Difficult Issues) - The Nan-ching is an ancient Chinese medical classic; it was compiled, probably, at some time during the first or second century A.D. For the past eight or nine centuries, the Nan-ching has been overshadowed by the reputation and authority of the "original" classic, the Huang-ti nei-ching ("TheYellow Emperor's Inner Classic") with its two largely different segments, the Huang-ti nei-ching su-wen (or Su-wen) and the Huang-ti nei-ching ling-shu (or Ling-shu)

 Approximately 1,000 BC, during the Shang Dynasty, hieroglyphs showed 
evidence of Acupuncture and Moxibustion. Bronze needles were excavated 
from ruins, but the bian stones remain the main form of needles.

 During the Warring States Era (421-221 BC) metal needles replaced the bian stones. Four gold needles and five silver needles were found in an ancient tomb dating back to 113 BC. The Miraculous Pivot names nine types of Acupuncture needles. The history notes many physicians practicing
Acupuncture during this time Another milestone for this period was the 
compilation of the Nan Jing (Book of Difficult Question) The NanJing 
discusses  five element theory, hara diagnosis, eight extra meridians, and other important topics.

From 260-265 AD, the famous physician Huang Fu Mi, organized all of the ancient literature into his classic text - Systemic Classics of Acupuncture and Moxibustion. The text is twelve volumes and describes 349 Acupuncture points. It is organized according to the theory of Zang Fu, Qi and Blood, channels and colaterals, acupuncture points and clinical application. This book is noted to be one of the most influential text in the history of Chinese Medicine. Acupuncture was very popular during the Jin, Northern, Southern, Dynasties (265-581 AD) For XuXi family were known as expert in acupuncture. During this time period important texts charts enhanced knowledge and application.

 Acupuncture experienced great development during the Sui (581-618) and 
Tang (618-907) Dynasties. Upon request from the Tang Government (627-649 AD), the famous physician Zhen Quan revised the important Acupuncture texts and charts. Another famous physician of the time,
Sun Si Mio, wrote  Prescription with Thousand Gold for Emergencies (650-692). This text includes data on acupuncture from various scholars. During this period, Acupuncture became a special branch of medicine and practitioners were named acupuncturists.  Acupuncture schools appeared and acupuncture education became part of the Imperial Medical Bureau.

 During the Song Dynasty (960-1279), a famous physician Wang Weiyi wrote he illustrated Manual on Points for Acupuncture and Moxibustion. This book 
included 657 points. He also cast two bronze statues on which meridians and 
points were engraved for teaching purpose. 

The Ming Dynasty (1568-1644) was the enlightening period for the advancement  of Acupuncture. Many new developments included:

1.       Revision of the classic texts

2.       Refinement of Acupuncture techniques and manipulation

3.       Development of Moxa sticks for indirect treatment

4.       Development of extra points outside the main meridians

5.       The encyclopedic work of 120 volumes - Principle and Practice of 
   Medicine was written by the famous physician Wang Gendung

6.    1601 - Yang Jizhou wrote Zhenjiu Dacheng (Principles of Acupuncture  
and   Moxibustion). This great treatise on Acupuncture reinforced the  
principles  of the NeiJing and NanJing. This work was the foundation of  the teachings of  G. Souile de Morant who introduced Acupuncture into

 From the Qing Dynasty to the Opium Wars (1644-1840), herbal medicine
became the main tool of physicians and Acupuncture was suppressed.

 Following the revolution of 1911, Western Medicine was introduced and 
Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology were suppressed. Due to the large
population and the need for medical care and Acupuncture and herbs 
remained popular among the folk people and the “barefoot doctor” emerged.

 Acupuncture was used exclusively during the Long March (1934-1935) and 
despite harsh conditions it helped maintain the health of the army. This led to 
Mao Zedong, the leader of the communist Party, to see that acupuncture 
remained an important element in China’s medical system. In 1950, Chairman 
Mao officially united Traditional Chinese Medicine with his book: New 

 In the 1950’s to the 1960’s Acupuncture research continued with further study of ancient texts, clinical effect on various disease, acupuncture anesthesia, and Acupuncture’s effect on the internal organs.

 From 1970’s to the present, Acupuncture continues to play an important role in China’s medical system. China has taken the lead in researching all aspects of acupuncture’s application and clinical effects. 

 Although acupuncture has become modernized it will never lose its connection to a philosophy established thousands of years ago.

                                                            - Acupuncture and Moxibustion -  Beijing Press  


Ancient  / Modern / Meridians(M) / Microsystems(MS)



Chinese Medicine - Historical Influential Masters/Sages



Roots (Historical Perspective of Reflexology)

 A widely held theory on reflexology is that reflexology originated in China about 5,000 years ago. Many reputable reflexologists have stated their belief in this theory. Other theories suggest that there are parallel developments elsewhere in Babylonian and Egyptian cultures. The oldest documentation depicting the practice of reflexology were being unearthed in Egypt.

 Even before the Russian (Ivan Pavlov - the study of the brain reflex), German (Dr. Alfons Cornelius - one of the very first to use reflex zones massage to treat illnesses) or Americans (Dr. William Fitzgerald - the founder of Zone Therapy and Eunice Igham 1879-1974 , the Mother of Modern Reflexology) , followed by Fr. Josef Eugster (the Father of Modern Reflexology) - has through his humility and compassionate love, brought help to thousands and thousands of people who cannot afford Western health care and had the greatest influence on the growth and development of reflexology. His name would be side by side  Eunice Ingham's. What Eunice did in America, he has done in Asia and around the world. All the above-mentioned techniques are certainly based on similar idea, reflex action on zone/area or points on the feet and hands.

The Oriental  Reflexology (Moyshan method)

There is also the Chinese link that exist between reflexology and acupuncture. Infact early Chinese exacavations during the New stone Age, unearth stone needles called Bian Stone  that resembles the tools that are being used today by Master reflexologist Moyshan in her treatment strategy during her reflexology session. She has through humility and dedication brought together Western and Eastern Reflexology in New York City and has continue to help people of all nationalities to improve and lead a better life.

 The Moyshan Method has evolved and perfected through the generations passing on and incorporate the latest Western relaxing techniques and the Eastern  treatment method that is linked to  Meridian Therapies such as acupuncture, shiatsu and acupressure which has its roots in  Chinese Medicine.

The Moyshan Method also involves working on acupuncture and acupressure points but only those found in the feet. Like meridians, acupuncture points in the feet mirrors those found in other parts of the body. Through increased awareness of meridians one can practice reflexology more effectively as meridians provide profound insight into the disease pathways throughout the body and are therefore a most useful diagnostic tool.  

The Little Oasis in Chinatown

 Master reflexologist  Moyshan is the founder of the Moyshan Foot Massage. Using the “Moyshan Method”  she has the most effective treatment for stress, tension relief and jet lag and her treatment is part of a holistic treatment to bring your body back into balance and to remove toxins accumulated in your system. By going back to the basics, patients are encourage  to take control and take better care of themselves through diet, exercise and drinking lots of water and a series of  reflexology sessions to rebalance and detoxify the system. A visit to this Litle Oasis in Chinatown is a must if you are in the Big Apple.



Roots (Historical Accounts of Massage Therapy)

 Chinese massage is closely related to acupuncture in its use of the meridian system and is considered to be effective for a similar range of health problems. However it should not be seen as a poor relation to acupuncture. It is an effective and comprehensive therapy and is regarded alongside herbs, diet, qigong and one of the fundamental arts of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Massage Techniques

 Techniques are at the heart of any system of bodywork. They are what defines its feel and therapeutic qualities. Most textbooks on Chinese Massage list between 30 and 70 shou fa or hand techniques. These cover not only a range of soft tissue techniques, but also many percussion and joint manipulation methods including spinal adjustments similar to Osteopathy, although there are important differences. Some of these shou fa resemble western massage, others are quite unique. For example in gun fa, the back of the hand is rotated rapidly back and forth over the skin with an effect which one of my patient's once described as like a heavy rolling pin.

 Broadly speaking shou fa are classified into yin (sedating) and yang (stimulating). However each technique is further classified according the therapeutic principles it achieves. For example mo fa (rubbing) stimulates yang qi, tui fa (pushing) regulates counterflow. The skilled therapist combines these techniques in just the same way a herbalist combines herbs in a formula ensuring that therapeutic principles are achieved with a proper balance of yin and yang. So in a situtation where yin sedating techniques are primarily called for, the therapist will use some yang stimulation to activate qi and blood just as a herbalist adds ginger to a cooling formula.

 The massage therapist has other tools to draw on. Shou fa can be applied to particular areas, channels, acupoints or ashi points achieving similar results to acupuncture needles. They can also be applied in different directions. Working with or against the flow of the channels, towards or out from the dan tien, clockwise or counter clockwise, all have different effects.

 Equally important is the way the techniques are carried out. Chinese sources say that the shou fa must be gentle and soft yet deep and penetrating. The strokes must be applied rhythmically and persistently. The controlled use of very deep, moving pressure is one of the secrets of Tuina massage. A Tuina therapist might spend the same time on one frozen shoulder as a western masseur would spend on an entire body treatment. The repeated application of a single technique many hundreds of times with deep penetration and qi communication is often termed "finger meditation".

Five related and overlapping areas

Chinese massage is in fact not a single therapy but encompasses five related and overlapping areas.

Amno, press and rub - massage for rejuvenation and health maintenance. Widely used in the home and in martial arts, qi gong and sports training.

Tuina, push and grasp - sophisticated medical massage used to treat injuries, joint and muscle problems and internal disorders.

Infant Tuina - one of the primary ways the Chinese treat babies and young children. The points and channels used are quite different to the standards ones.

Dian Xue, point press - familiar as acupressure. Uses simple pressure techniques. Very much a home remedy but also used by acupuncturists when needles are not suitable.

Wai Qi Liao Fa, curing with external qi - healing with direct transmission by qigong masters after many years of rigorous training and discipline.

 In practice it is the context and objectives which distinguishes these branches. In terms of theory and techniques they have much in common. Central to all of them is the idea that massage affects not only the physical body but also the Qi body (the network of channels and points) and the mental body (emotions, thoughts and spiritual faculties). Since both physical and mental health are dependant on a smooth and abundant flow of Qi, massage can effectively treat all three levels.

 Massage is of course as old as human kind. However even with this perspective the pedigree of Chinese massage is impressive. There are massage textbooks as far back as the Nei Jing (722-481 BC) the most ancient medical texts. In the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) it is recorded that there were 56 massage doctors in the imperial hospital more than the total of herbalist and acupuncturists. Around this time Chinese techniques were imported to Japan and eventually gave rise to Japanese Shiatsu. Later still Peter Henrik Ling learned from Chinese masters before developing Swedish Massage( the origin of Western bodywork) which is  practiced and perfected and taught at the P.H. Ling Clinic at the Swedish Institute  in New York City more than a quarter century ago and still operate a treatment clinic today.

 Combining massage with herbal medicine has great benefits. Massage can enhance and speed up the action of herbal remedies, our hands can detect a wealth of diagnostic information and touch adds a deeply compassionate level to the act of healing. Furthermore the liniments, oils etc used in massage provide an additional channel for herbs to work. The herbalist will get more from a system of massage based on the same traditional energetic and holistic principles as their herbal practice. Inevitably we must look to the great civilizations of the East to find such systems. Chinese massage, is a sophisticated ancient but living tradition rooted in Yin-Yang, five elements, qi-blood-fluid etc with a unique power to heal disease rather than simply relax the body and relieve tension.

 The development of the Chinese tradition came from the synergy between four groups, doctors who brought the sophisticated medical theories of TCM to massage, martial arts who combined deep experience of qi with great ability to heal injuries, Bhuddist and Taoist adepts who used massage as an essential support to their spiritual yoga and laymen often blind practitioners offering massage for pleasure and relaxation. Since the time of the Mao Zedong massage has continued to develop absorbing western ideas into the traditional framework. It is widely practiced and taught in hospital and medical schools and is an essential part of primary healthcare. The astounding success of China's athletes and gymnasts is due at least in part to the use old traditional massage in their training.


Historic  Massage & Health Practices


Roots (Historical Essence of Herbology)

Herbs have been relied upon for the healing of ailments for thousands of years. The focus of herbalism is to support he body’s self healing ability. Herbs nourish us physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. When we take herbs the essence enters the acupuncture meridian and adjust the vital flow of energy in the body. Herbs are strong foods, so by eating them we enrich ourselves with a vast array of nutrients. The energetic classification of herbs is a science which has been refined over the last 3000 years. Today, we see further refinement due to the changing profile of disease.

The history of Chinese Medicine dates back to the writings of the Yellow Emperors Inner Classics (Huang Di Nei Jing). This work of art is a dialogue between the Yellow Emperor(2697 - 2597 B.C.) and his physician Qi Bo , in which they discuss the whole spectrum of Chinese Medicine – including topics such as Acupuncture, YinYang, Five Elements pathology, diagnosis, and etiology of disease. The work was compiled around  305 -204  B.C. the Inner Classic is the foundation for theory and philosophy of Traditional  Chinese Medicine. Chinese Herbal Medicine is a compilation of experimentation and research dating back to a tribal chief named Sheng Nong who resided in China along the great Yellow River Plateau (2700B.C.). He is famous for ingesting many substances to record first hand their effect. In all he recorded around 365 healing substances and wrote the first book on Traditional Chinese Medicine(The Classic of Material Medica – Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing). The work was compiled around 206 B.C. The historical tradition continued with the work of famous physician who lived around the third century  A.D. named Zhang Zhong Jing. He was one of the most celebrated Chinese physicians who compiled two classics – (Shang Han Lun – discussion of cold induced disease) and (Jing Gui Yao Lun – Synopsis of Prescriptions of the Golden Chamber) These works are still referenced today for the diagnosis, treatment, and differentiation of yin-yang and 6 stages Chinese Medicine is a branch of the Taoist healing arts which include Acupuncture, Tai Qi Chuan, Meditation, Qi Gong, Astrology, I-Ching, and Geomancy. Around 452 A.D. a taoist named Tao Hong Jing contributed to Chinese Herbal Medicine by editing the original Classics of Materia Medica according to kingdom – plants, animals etc. He also increased the total substances to 730 substances. In 1618 A.D. during the Tang  Dynasty the government contributed by compiling the first Official Materia Medica named Xin Xiu Ben Cao. This great work includes 844 illustrated  pages. During the Sung Dynasty (960 – 1279 A.D.) a physician named Tang Shen Wei increased in the Material Medica to 1746 substances. By 1590 A.D. the most comprehensive medical book named Grand Material Medica – (Ben Cao Gang Mu) was compiled by Li Shi Zhen with over 52 volumes, and  30 years over research, it includes 1892 substances with over 100 illustration and 10,000 prescription Today the Material Medica is being further refined by  clinical and scientific data. Most of the research is being done in China . Each herb is listed with the properties, acupuncture meridian entered , functions, clinical use, major combinations, dosages and pharmacological  research such as anti-microbial effect, anti-viral effect, anti-fungal effect, effect on blood pressure, effect on smooth muscle, endocrine effect, central nervous system effect, use in gynecology, etc.

Timeless  Masters & Sages

Liu WanSu

Liu WanSu  Zhang ZiHe Li DongYuan Zhu DanXi     Hua To


Roots (Historical Accounts of Qi Gong)

The history of Chinese Qigong can be roughly divided into four periods.

Little is known about the first period, which is considered to have started when the Yi Jing - Book of Changes was introduced sometime before 1122 B.C., and to have extended until the Han dynasty (206 B.C.) when Buddhism and its meditation methods were imported from India. This infusion brought Qigong practice and meditation into the second period, the religious Qigong era.

This period lasted until the Liang dynasty (502-557 A.D.), when it was discovered that Qigong could be used for martial purposes. This was the beginning of the third period, that of martial Qigong. Many different martial Qigong styles were created based on the theories and principles of Buddhist and Daoist Qigong. This period lasted until the overthrow of the Qing dynasty in 1911; from that point Chinese Qigong training was mixed with Qigong practices from India, Japan, and many other countries.

Before the Han Dynasty (Before 206 B.C.)

The Yi Jing - Book of Changes1122 B.C.) was probably the first Chinese book related to Qi. It introduced the concept of the three natural energies or powers (San Cai): Tian (Heaven), Di (Earth), and Ren (Man). Studying the relationship of these three natural powers was the first step in the development of Qigong.

In 1766-1154 B.C. (the Shang dynasty), the Chinese capital was located in today's An Yang in Henan province. An archeological dig there at a late Shang dynasty buIial ground called Yin Xu discovered more than 160,000 pieces of turtle shell and animal bone which were covered with written characters. This writing, called "Jia Gu Wen" (Oracle-Bone Scripture), was the earliest evidence of the Chinese use of the written word. Most of the infonnation recorded was of a religious nature. There was no mention of acupuncture or other medical knowledge, even though it was recorded in the Nei Jing that during the reign of the Yellow emperor (2690-2590 B.C.) Bian Shi (stone probes) were already being used to adjust people's Qi circulation.

During the Zhou dynasty (1122-934 B.C.), Lao Zi (Li Er) mentioned certain breathing techniques in his classic "Dao De Jing" (or Tao Te Ching) (Classic on the Virtue of the Dao). He stressed that the way to obtain health was to "concentrate on Qi and achieve softness" (Zhuan Qi Zhi Rou).(*l) Later, Shi Ji - Historical Record in the Spring and Autumn and Warring States Periods (770-221 B.C.) also described more complete methods of breath training.

About 300 B.C. the Daoist philosopher Zhuang Zi described the relationship between health and the breath in his book Nan Hua Jing. "The men of old breathed clear down to their heels."

This was not merely a figure of speech, and confirms that a breathing method for Qi circulation was being used by some Daoists at that time. During the Qin and Han dynasties (221 B.C.-220 A.D.) there are several medical references to Qigong in the literature, such as the "Nan Jing" (Classic on Disorders) by the famous physician Bian Que, which describes using the breathing to increase Qi circulation. "Jin Kui Yao Lue" (Prescriptions from the Golden Chamber) by Zhang Zhong-Jing discusses the use of breathing and acupuncture to maintain good Qi flow.

Zhou Yi Can Tong Qi - A Comparative Study of the Zhou (dynasty) Book of Changes by Wei Bo-Yang explains the relationship of human beings to nature's forces and Qi. It can be seen from this list that up to this time, almost all of the Qigong publications were written by scholars such as Lao Zi and Zhuang Zi, or physicians such as Bian Que and Wei Bo-Yang.

Han Dynasty to the Beginning of the Liang Dynasty (206 B.C.-502 A.D.)

Because many Han emperors were intelligent and wise, the Han dynasty was a glorious and peaceful period. It was during the Eastern Han dynasty (c. 58 A.D.) that Buddhism was imported to China from India. The Han emperor became a sincere Buddhist; Buddhism soon spread and became very popular.

Many Buddhist meditation and Qigong practices, which had been practiced in India for thousands of years, were absorbed into the Chinese culture. The Buddhist temples taught many Qigong practices, especially the still meditation of Chan (Zen), which marked a new era of Chinese Qigong. Much of the deeper Qigong theory and practices which had been developed in India were brought to China. Unfortunately, since the training was directed at attaining Buddhahood, the training practices and theory were recorded in the Buddhist bibles and kept secret. For hundreds of years the religious Qigong training was never taught to laymen. Only in this century has it been available to the general populace.

Not long after Buddhism had been imported into China, a Daoist by the name of Zhang Dao-Ling combined the traditional Daoist principles with Buddhism and created a religion called Dao Jiao. Many of the meditation methods were a combination of the principles and training methods of both sources. Since Tibet had developed its own branch of Buddhism with its own training system and methods of attaining Buddhahood, Tibetan Buddhists were also invited to China to preach. In time, their practices were also absorbed.

It was in this period that the traditional Chinese Qigong practitioners finally had a chance to compare their arts with the religious Qigong practices imported mainly from India. While the scholarly and medical Qigong had been concerned with maintaining and improving health, the newly imported religious Qigong was concerned with far more.

Contemporary documents and Qigong styles show clearly that the religious practitioners trained their Qi to a much deeper level, working with many internal functions of the body, and strove to obtain control of their bodies, minds, and spirits with the goal of escaping from the cycie of reincarnation.

While the Qigong practices and meditations were being passed down secretly within the monasteries, traditional scholars and physicians continued their Qigong research. During the Jin dynasty in the 3rd century A.D., a famous physician named Hua Tuo used acupuncture for anesthesia in surgery.

The Daoist Jun Qian used the movements of animals to create the Wu Qin Xi (Five Animal Sports), which taught people how to increase their Qi circulation through specific movements.

Also, in this period a physician named Ge Hong mentioned in his book Bao Pu Zi using the mind to lead and increase Qi. Sometime in the period of 420 to 581 A.D. Tao Hong-Jing compiled the Yang Shen Yan Ming Lu - Records of Nourishing the Body and Extending Life, which showed many Qigong techniques.

Liang Dynasty to the End of the Qing Dynasty (502-1911 A.D.)

During the Liang dynasty (502-557 A.D.) the emperor invited a Buddhist monk named Da Mo, who was once an Indian prince, to preach Buddhism in China. The emperor decided he did not like Da Mo's Buddhist theory, so the monk withdrew to the Shaolin Temple. When Da Mo arrived, he saw that the priests were weak and sickly, so he shut himself away to ponder the problem.

He emerged after nine years of seclusion and wrote two classics: Yi Jin Jing or Yi Gin Ching - Muscle/Tendon Changing Classic and Xi Sui Jing (or Shii Soei Ching - Marrow/Brain Washing Classic.

The Muscle/Tendon Changing Classic taught the priests how to gain health and change their physical bodies from weak to strong. The Marrow/Brain Washing Classic taught the priests how to use Qi to clean the bone marrow and strengthen the blood and immune system, as well as how to energize the brain and attain enlightenment. Because the Marrow/Brain Washing Classic was harder to understand and practice, the training methods were passed down secretly to only a very few disciples in each generation.

After the priests practiced the Muscle/Tendon Changing exercises, they found that not only did they improve their health, but they also greatly increased their strength. When this training was integrated into the martial arts forms, it increased the effectiveness of their techniques. In addition to this martial Qigong training, the Shaolin priests also created five animal styles of Gongfu which imitated the way different animals fight. The animals imitated were the tiger, leopard, dragon, snake, and crane.

Outside of the monastery, the development of Qigong continued during the Sui and Tang dynasties (581-907 A.D.).

Chao Yuan-Fang compiled the Zhu Bing Yuan Hou Lun (Thesis on the Origins and Symptoms of Various Diseases), which is a veritable encyclopedia of Qigong methods listing 260 different ways ofincreasing the Qi flow.

The Qian Jin Fang (Thousand Gold Prescriptions) by Sun Si-Mao described the method of leading Qi, and also described the use of the Six Sounds.

The Buddhists and Daoists had already been using the Six Sounds to regulate Qi in the internal organs for some time. Sun Si-Mao also introduced a massage system called Lao Zi's 49 Massage Techniques. Wai Tai Mi Yao (The Extra Important Secret) by Wang Tao discussed the use of breathing and herbal therapies for disorders of Qi circulation.

During the Song, Jin, and Yuan dynasties (960-1368 A.D.), Yang Shen Jue (Life Nourishing Secrets) by Zhang An-Dao discussed several Qigong practices.

Ru Men Shi Shi (The Confucian Point of View) by Zhang Zi-He describes the use of Qigong to cure external injuries such as cuts and sprains. "Lan Shi Mi Cang" (Secret Library of the Orchid Room) by Li Guo describes using Qigong and herbal remedies for internal disorders. "Ge Zhi Yu Lun" (A Further Thesis of Complete Study) by Zhu Dan-Xi provided a theoretical explanation for the use of Qigong in curing disease.

During the Song dynasty (960-1279 A.D.), Chang San-Feng is believed to have created Taijiquan (or Tai Chi Chuan). Tai;ji followed a different approach in its use of Qigong than did Shaolin. While Shaolin emphasized Wai Dan (External Elixir) Qigong exercises, Taiji emphasized Nei Dan (Internal Elixir) Qigong training.

In 1026 A.D. the famous brass man of acupuncture was designed and built by Dr. Wang Wei-Yi. Before that time, the many publications which discussed acupuncture theory, principles, and treatment techniques disagreed with each other, and left many points unclear.

When Dr. Wang built his brass man, he also wrote a book called Tong Ren Yu Xue Zhen Jiu Tu (Illustration of the Brass Man Acupuncture and Moxibustion). He explained the relationship of the 12 organs and the 12 Qi channels, clarified many of the points of confusion, and, for the first time, systematically organized acupuncture theory and principles.

In 1034 A.D. Dr. Wang used acupuncture to cure the emperor Ren Zong. With the support of the emperor, acupuncture flourished. In order to encourage acupuncture medical research, the emperor built a temple to Bian Que, who wrote the Nan Jing, and worshiped him as the ancestor of acupuncture.

Acupuncture technology developed so much that even the Jin race in the distant North requested the brass man and other acupuncture technology as a condition for peace. Between 1102 to 1106 A.D. Dr. Wang dissected the bodies of prisoners and added more information to the Nan Jing. His work contributed greatly to the advancement of Qigong and Chinese medicine by giving a clear and systematic idea of the circulation of Qi in the human body.

Later, in the Southern Song dynasty (1127-1279 A.D.), Marshal Yue Fei was credited with creating several internal Qigong exercises and martial arts. It is said that he created the Eight Pieces of Brocade to improve the health of his soldiers. He is also known as the creator of the internal martial style Xing Yi. Eagle style martial artists also claim that Yue Fei was the creator of their style.

From then until the end of the Qing dynasty (1911 A.D.), many other Qigong styles were founded. The well known ones include Hu Bu Gong (Tiger Step Gong), Shi Er Zhuang (Twelve Postures) and Jiao Hua Gong (Beggar Gong).

Also in this period, many documents related to Qigong were published, such as Bao Shen Mi Yao (The Secret Important Document of Body Protection) by Cao Yuan-Bai, which described moving and stationary Qigong practices; and "Yang Shen Fu Yu" (BriefIntroduction to Nourishing the Body) by Chen Ji Ru, about the three treasures: Jing (essence), Qi (internal energy), and Shen (spirit).

Also, Yi Fan Ji Jie (The Total Introduction to Medical Prescriptions) by Wang Fan-An reviewed and summarized the previously published materials; and "Nei Gong Tu Shuo" (Illustrated Explanation of Nei Gong) by Wang Zu-Yuan presented the Twelve Pieces of Brocade and explained the idea of combining both moving and stationary Qigong.

In the late Ming dynasty (around 1640 A.D.), a martial Qigong style, Huo Long Gong (Fire Dragon Gong), was created by the Taiyang martial stylists.

The well known internal martial art style Ba Gua Zhang (or Ba Kua Chang)(Eight Trigrams Palm) is believed to have been created by Dong Hai-Chuan late in the Qing dynasty (1644-1911 A.D.).

This style is now gaining in popularity throughout the world. During the Qing dynasty, Tibetan meditation and martial techniques became widespread in China for the first time.

This was due to the encouragement and interest of the Manchurian Emperors in the royal palace, as well as others of high rank in society.

From the End of Qing Dynasty to the Present

Before 1911 A.D., Chinese society was very conservative and old-fashioned. Even though China had been expanding its contact with the outside world for the previous hundred years, the outside world had little influence beyond the coastal regions.

With the overthrow of the Qing dynasty in 1911 and the founding of the Chinese Republic, the nation began changing as never before. Since this time Qigong practice has entered a new era.

Because of the ease of communication in the modern world, Western culture now has great influence on the Orient.

Many Chinese have opened their minds and changed their traditional ideas, especially in Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Various Qigong styles are now being taught openly, and many formerly secret documents are being published.

Modern methods of communication have opened up Qigong to a much wider audience than ever before, and people now have the opportunity to study and understand many different styles.

In addition, people are now able to compare Chinese Qigong to similar arts from other countries such as India, Japan, Korea, and the Middle East.

Links ..

Qigong Guide & Resources

TaiJiQuan Yang Style Index

TaiJiQuan Chen Style Index

Robert Peng - QiGong for Health



Roots (Historical Influence of Feng Shui)

A Brief History

1. Pre- Qin Dynasty:  Cradle of Feng Shui
Archaeological evidence shows that the ancient Chinese chose dwelling sites with the following features:
- Raised platform or relatively high ground
- Proximity to water course or supply of clean water
- Well-drained soil and a solid foundation
- Easy transportation
- A peaceful environment, preferably surrounded by trees
These practices developed into something called 'Xiangdi' (observation and appraisal of the earth) by the time of the Qin Dynasty.

With the development of feudal society, knowledge in Xiangdi developed further.

2. Qin and Han Dynasties:  Germination of Feng Shui
- Period when Feng Shui principles are taking shape
- Publication of Kan-yu-jin-kui (The Golden Treasure of Kan Yu). This sowed the seed for Liqi Pai (Compass School) and started the split between Xing Shi Pai and Liqi Pai. Theory began to exert its importance over observation.

3. Wei, Jin, Northern and Southern Periods: Propagation of Feng Shui
- Guo Pu was said to have written the book Zhang Shu, (The Book of Burial) in this period. It gave the first definitions of Feng Shui.
- Guang Ge (Wei Dynasty) was another outstanding Feng Shui master of the period.  
Credited with having written Guang’s Guide to the Principle of the Earth.

4.   Sui, Tang, and the Five Dynasties:  The Spread of Feng Shui
- Introduction of the imperial examination system during the Tang dynasty changed the structure of Chinese society from aristocracy to a meritocracy (promotion on merit). As a result, Feng Shui evolved very quickly.
- Yang Jun-Song formalised the Xing Shi Pai. He came from Jiangsi, therefore the “Form” School was also called Jiangsi Pai.

- The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Dwelling (Huang-di-zhai-jing)  made its appearance.- Together with Guang’s Guide to the Principle of the Earth, these two books symbolised the maturity of Feng Shui.

5. Song Dynasty: The golden period of Feng Shui
- The separation of the two schools became distinct.
- Feng Shui was consolidated, the Luopan became widely used in Feng Shui
- The Liqi Pai became more popular.

6. Yuan Dynasty
- Ruled by the Mongols who are not native Chinese.
- All Chinese culture including Feng Shui suppressed.
- Feng Shui went into a decline.

7. Ming and Qing Dynasty
- Re-emergence of Chinese culture
- Revival of Song dynasty ideology and Feng Shui made a come-back.
- As time went on, Feng Shui became contradictory, confusing, and unduly complicated.
- During Qing dynasty it became corrupted and went into a decline again.

8. Contemporary China
- Feng Shui was banned after the establishment of Communist China c. 1949.
- The practice of Feng Shui was confined to Hong Kong, Taiwan, and S.E. Asia.
- There is now a Western-led resurgence of Feng Shui.

Links ...

How Feng Shui Works



Roots (History of Chair Massage / Massage Chair)

David Palmer is the San Francisco practitioner who created the world's first massage-specific chair, the High Touch Massage Chair, in 1986. I remember visiting the factory in Santa Rosa, California, with David just a few months before its debut to see the prototype. David was excited about how the chair would revolutionize touch therapies, allowing anyone to get worked on without taking off their clothes, and to receive a full-body massage at nearly any location. His dreams have come true. Today we find the massage chair being used wherever one's imagination may take them.

The original High Touch Massage Chair, which debuted in 1986, High Touch Massage Chairwas created by David Palmer and manufactured by Living Earth Crafts. The photo shows the chair in its folded-up position, which allows it to be carried much like a suitcase, complete with handle and carrying strap.

Massage Chair, circa 1989An early attempt at using metal instead of wood, circa 1989. This model did not fair well, due to its poorly designed locking mechanisms that made the chair very unstable and unsafe.The Massage Bar

The Massage Bar, created in 1993 by Cary Cruea of Seattle, Washington, utilizes a separate desktop face cradle attached to the countertop. The desktop face cradle was created about 1990 and was designed for doing massage where a chair was not available.

Massage Chair, circa 1999The latest development in massage chairs, circa 1999, this one from Golden Ratio Woodworks and the mind of owner John Fanuzzi. Many chairs look and act like this one, using high-tech tubing, quality vinyl and offering an easy-to-assemble set-up and easy-to-carry break-down. The Oakworks chair uses powder-coated aluminum and allows many adjustments.

The retail cost of that first chair was $385. With nearly a dozen manufacturers today and prices ranging from a low of $239 to a high of $551 (average $418) the chair costs about the same as a massage table.

The evolution of the massage chair since 1986 has been considerable in terms of the materials used to make them, the added features like wheels, covers and instructional videos (the first chair had no diagrams or photos on how to assemble it), the safety of transporting and adjusting a chair, and the stability and quality of the overall product.

Most notable has been the change from primarily wooden materials to high-tech metals and plastics, while the vinyls and under-padding have also improved with new technology. The range of adjustments on today's table make the original look like a one-dimensional unit, even though the High Touch Massage Chair had a face rest, and seat, arm and leg adjustments. Today's chairs have extensive face-cradle adjustments, and several models can take the client from a sitting position to a horizontal posture that is almost supine.

The chair has also spawned other related inventions, such as the desk-top face-cradle designed to attach to the top of a desk while the client is seated on an ordinary stool. (There's also the new mobile massage tool for home use that provides a face-cradle at the end of your bed, supported with a metal support under the box springs and mattress.)

The massage chair has indeed been one of the most influential new tools for the practitioner since it was first introduced, and has contributed toward an expansion of the career opportunities in the industry like no other tool now on the market. David Palmer is still going strong, teaching his method of giving a session on the chair-right next to a large number of others trying to capture the market of those who want to learn how to use a massage chair and market its uses into today's fast-paced world. Because with a massage chair, where you do massage is now as far-reaching as your own imagination.

Robert Noah Calvert is the founder and CEO of MASSAGE Magazine. The material for this column comes from two sources: the World of Massage Museum's collections and Calvert's book, The History of Massage published in February 2002 by Healing Arts Press.



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