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Yin And Yang (Taijitu)

According to the Chinese, the Universe consists of two opposing yet complimentary forces – Yin and Yang.  Everything in life is composed of these balancing aspects.  Things that are considered Yin are associated with feminine, yielding, nurturing, cooling, moisturising, soft dark qualities.  Yang aspects are associated with strong, hard, light, masculine, creative, inspirational qualities.  However, you have to remember that as we are dealing with Chinese philosophy, there is a paradox in the Yin/Yang concept because wherever there is one, the other is present.  To quote the Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine, which is now thought to date from the third century BC

“The principle of yin and yang is the basic principle of the entire universe… It is the root and source of life and death”

However, in practice, being faced with lists of Yin and Yang is of little use as it is the concept that is important.  The principal is one of a continuing state of dependency and relationships coexisting with one another.  As an example, let’s take a container of water.  In its cold state it is yin. When it is warmed it becomes yang and if it is heated even more, what was the yang warm water becomes yin because in its really hot state it is yang. Boiling water then turns to steam which is yin.  Trust the Chinese to move the goalposts!  One can consume the other, or be dependent upon the other but like the yin/yang symbol, one quality is always present in the other.  Ideally, we would possess Yin and Yang in equal balance.  Excess yin or yang causes an imbalance (think of this as dis-ease which can then become disease if not treated quickly). Imbalances occur when an external influence such as wind, damp or heat enter the body or emotional/psychological problems will cause un-ease.  Traditional Chinese Medicine seeks to bring a balance between the body, mind and environment.

Balance between yin and yang is not only needed in the body, but also in the mind.  Positive thinking is a great healer and a positive approach to knowing that you WILL get better (not might!) has been proved true by conventional western doctors and nurses.

Tai Chi and QiGong are used by many people to enhance their mindbodyspirit.  They access the Energy (Qi) of the Universe by use of breathing and control of the physical body.

Using reason is a Yang aspect whilst using intuition is Yin. Be sensible with your use of both.



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