Traditional Chinese medicine is a complete healthcare system that is capable of providing both specialized and primary healthcare. It also gives us guidelines on how to prevent illnesses.
The bulk of traditional Chinese medicine’s roots lie in Taoism. Taoism is both a religion and a philosophy of life. The main focus of Taoism is the natural laws of the universe and our relationship to the universe.
Some of the basic principles of Taoism are listed below. They must be understood in terms of their applications to health and healing:
• Basic laws of nature govern the universe. We are a part of this universe and we must exist within that framework and abide by these laws.
• In its natural order, the universe is perfectly harmonious and perfectly organized. If humans live according to the laws of the universe, they will also be in harmony.
• Change is the only constant. Our universe is dynamic. If we do not change ourselves in line with the universe, disharmony will prevail. It is this disharmony that will cause sickness or illness of the mind and body.
• All life is interconnected and interdependent. To ensure overall well being we need to consider the whole before the parts. When curing an illness or sickness we must adopt a systems approach, that is, look at the body as a whole rather than as parts.
• We are a part of the universe. We are not independent of our universe. In fact, we have an intimate connection with our environment and the universe. Therefore, our spiritual, mental, and physical health is affected by our environment and external factors.
The word ‘acupuncture’ literally means ‘pricking with a needle.’ Acupuncture points are, in fact, the focus of acupuncture treatments. Therefore, acupuncture involves the insertion and manipulation of needles into acupuncture points on the body for restoring health and well being.
Acupuncture originated in China more than 2000 years ago – making it one of the oldest and most commonly practiced medical procedures in the world. Research into acupuncture is still ongoing and practices and theories are being constantly updated.
In essence, acupuncture is aimed at promoting well being and alleviating pain. The method may seem alien to many of us, but it has been practiced in China and beyond for thousands of years and continues to be validated by scientists even today.
Acupuncture is now practiced the world over to benefit people of all races, ages, and ailments.