Qi, pronounced chee, loosely translates as ‘energy’ but is far more than what we in the English language refer to as ‘energy’. In Chinese medicine, the body is seen to have many different types and uses of and for Qi. Our personal Qi circulates within and around us, and is viewed as a power source. We live by virtue of our ability to manufacture more Qi. This allows us to maintain our equilibrium in the face of change (homeostatic balance), and to repair and reproduce ourselves.
When we lack Qi, living becomes more difficult and we may struggle to survive. For example, many of us may have been told that our thyroid is ‘fine’, but obviously having we do not feel well / energetic enough to live to our optimum. Qi is found within the actual Blood, and also circulates within all meridians, blood vessels and denser body structures. It allows us to regenerate, enhances our being and allows us to maintain our strong foundation.
Qi can be divided into two different, though complementary aspects –Yin and Yang. Everything we are aware of – in ourselves and in our known universe – has these two components. These terms are not designating femaleness and maleness, but are more akin to the ‘shady‘ and ‘sunny’ sides of a hill. There is always a ‘dark’ for that which we know as ‘light’, a night’ for what we call ‘day’, ‘black’ for what we see as ‘white’, ‘Heaven’ as a counterpoint for whatever we perceive as its opposite.
Qi in the body is, as all things are, polarised within the Yin/Yang continuum. The terms Yin and Yang are relative to each other, and are in themselves not absolutes. They form opposite ends of a continuum and they allow the comparison of one to another. Not ‘good’, not ‘bad’ – but all as an integral part of the continuum of experience.
‘Male’ can only be if there is ‘female’ to compare it with. ‘Right’ can only exist if there is ‘left’. Remember, these are concepts and are not ‘real’ physical things. To live well, thoroughly enjoying life, we need strong Yin Qi and strong Yang Qi.