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Theory of essence Qi and spirit

Basic contents of theory of essence, Qi and spirit
Essence, Qi and spirit is substance basis and basic elements consisting and sustaining life activity. It is commonly said that there is three kinds of treasure in the heaven, which is sun, moon and star, three kinds of treasure in the earth, which is water, fire and wind, three kinds of treasure in the body, which is essence, Qi and sprit. The theory of essence, Qi and spirit, which study the relation of essence, Qi and spirit with the life activity play an important role in the health Qi Gong.

Essence
Essence is the basic substance of body structure and it is the basis of substance sustaining all kinds of functional activity and general name of varieties of nutrients. It is different in the conception from the aspect of narrow meaning and extensive meaning. Essence is commonly essential substance for reproduction in its narrow meaning and it is a vague reference to all essential substance including Qi, blood, normal body fluid and nutrients taken from the food in the aspect of extensive meaning. Its conception also has the difference of the congenital essence and the postnatal essence. The former is essential substance for reproduction and origin of life originated from parent and the latter is nutrient substance transforming from water and cereals. The congenital and postnatal essences complement each other and the former depends on the successive breeding and cultivation of postnatal essence to take physiological effect. The latter also depend on the energy assistance of congenital essence to make generations on.

Qi
Qi is nutrient substance of which immerse and nurture the body and motive power of which push about the life activity. There are two kinds of Qi, which are comparatively congenital Qi and postnatal Qi. Congenital Qi is also called archaeus, which is the most basic and important Qi as well as motive power of life activity. Although it comes from the congenital Qi of parent, but it can help the growth and development of human body as well as warm and stimulate the physiological function of Zang Fu and meridians only through successively being supplemented and nourished by the nutrient Qi and inhaled air. Postnatal Qi, which is transported and transformed from the nutrient Qi and inhaled air, include thoracic Qi, nutrient Qi and Wei Qi. Choracic Qi, which only comes out of the respiratory tract and be in charge of respiration and utter but also passes through the blood vessel to propel and regulate the pulsation of heart and stores in the Dantian by way of descending action of lung, is combined of nutrient Qi transformed from the spleen and stomach with nature air inhaled from the lung. Nutrient Qi, which runs in the vessels with abundant nutrient, is mainly the essential part of water and cereals transported and transformed from the spleen and stomach with the function of nurturing and producing blood. Wei Qi is transported and transformed from the essential part of water and cereals. Its main function is to regulate the open and close of muscle and viscus, discharge of sweat, and sustain the stable temperature along with guarding the outer part of body and the invasion of exogenous pathogen and warming the Zang and Fu, the outer part and skin and hair etc.

Spirit
Spirit is the appearance of thinking and consciousness as well as internal Zang Fu essence. It has the same substance basis as it arises from the essence and Qi. Spirit embodies its function depending on the existence of Qi and body. Man’s normal life activity depends on the normal activity of spirit from the whole body to brain, from five sense organs and seven facial orifices to meridians, Qi and blood, essence, body normal fluid and limbs activity. There is narration in the ancient books that patient with spirit will live well and patient without spirit will die. It is thus evident that spirit is very important in life activity. Spirit can be divided into congenital spirit and postnatal spirit. That organic integration of male essence and female essence result from the birth of life is called congenital spirit, which can dominate the life activity without the governing of the mind, consciousness and thinking. Postnatal spirit eventually means the function of brain including mind, consciousness and thinking. It is the image of surroundings in the brain and dominates all the psychological activity as well as behaviour of body, in the meantime, it can affect the harmony and balance of all the physiological function. Based on the congenital spirit, postnatal spirit is also nurtured by the postnatal essence and Qi. In order to bring into the inherent action of congenital full play one should suppress the postnatal spirit and guard the former.

Application of the theory of essence, Qi and spirit in the health Qi Gong
Essence, Qi and spirit are the whole body among which can use, promote and transform each other just as the life-cultivation practicers said: accumulating spirit produces Qi, accumulating Qi produces essence, refining essence transforms into Qi, refining Qi transforms into spirit. The exercise of health Qi Gong plays a markedly promoting role in the mutual sprouting and transforming among the essence, Qi and spirit.

How to exercise the essence, Qi and spirit with the health Qi Gong, different Gong has different methods. Most of them implement that through dredging the meridians, regulating respiration and nourishing and cherishing the spirit step by step including mind concentration, inward contemplation and specific exercise and regulation of breathing of some meridians, acupoints three Dan Tian in the upper, middle and lower part of human body, especially the lower Dan Tian of which is centered between the kidneys and acupoints such as Tan Zhong, Lao Gong and Yong Quan etc. Mind concentration on abdominal Dan Tian, of which is centered on the umbilicus, mainly exercises the spirit and Qi. Except for exercising the spirit and Qi, mind concentration on Ming Men, Guan Yuan and Hui Yin mainly exercises the essence. The exercise of mind concentration on Lao Gong and Yong Quan is more helpful to induce the ascending of clearing Qi and the descending of dirty Qi. As Dan Tian, which is centered on the umbilicus, and kidneys are closely related with the Zang Fu and meridians, it decides their specific position and important action.

The health Qi Gong enhances the Qi Hua of human body by way of exercising the respiration for cultivation, which means the motion and change of Qi, and it thinks highly of life-cultivation and regulating respiration. With strong vigor, Qi is flowed and filled in the whole body. The motion of Qi including ascending-descending and coming-in and going-out is called activity of Qi. It can endlessly flow in the Zang Fu, meridians, limbs and all orifices to sustain, promote, arouse, coordinate and balance the physiological function of human body only when the activity of Qi is unblocked. The body is healthy with the smoothly movement of Qi activity. The pathological state such as Qi stagnation, abnormal rising of Qi, Qi sinking, Qi stasis, Qi depression and Qi-stagnant dysuria etc will ensue under the condition of disorder of Qi activity. As soon as the Qi activity stops, the life activity will end as well. So the Qi is the primary substance sustaining the life activity of human body. How does the health Qi Gong cultivate the life and regulate the breath? Firstly, it can arouse and invigorate the primary Qi by ways of daoyin, running Qi and kneading; secondly, it can enhance the Qihua function and improve the circulation of Qi and blood by ways of varieties of regulating mind, regulating breath and exercising the body.

Nurturing of mind is especially paid attention in the exercise of the health Qi Gong of which constantly regards the body and mind with the same origin, life and existence as the two important elements. It advocates cultivation of body and mind together and thinks that man can live a long life only when he makes the body and the mind together. The cultivation of body and mind together means that one should stress the nurture of body along with the regulation of mind in the practice of the health Qi Gong. Besides the body health, together with the happy mind, one still should make the body and the mind develop in the balanced state. To nurture the body to sustain the life and cultivate the mind. To keep the mind to settle the mind and cultivate the character. Exercising like the above-mentioned methods in a long run can cultivate and mould the noble integrity and achieve the aim of cultivating one’s heart with full essence, abundant Qi and harmony mind.

Reference:
The Health Qi Gong and theory of essence, Qi and spirit Chinese Health Qigong Association

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