Here is a quotation from Chapter 2 of the Yellow Emperor’s Classic Of Medicine:
(It is amazing how those quotations, translated from the original, written at least 3000 years ago, are still so accurate!)
“The three months of the spring season bring about the revitalization of all thing in nature. It is the time of birth. This is when heaven and earth are reborn. During this season it is advisable to retire early. Arise early also and go walking in order to absorb the fresh, invigorating energy. Since this is the season in which the universal energy begings anew and rejuvenates, one should attempt to correspond to it directly by being open and unsupressed, both physically and emotionally.”
“On the physical leven it is good to exercice more frequently and wear loose-fitting clothing. This is the time to do stretching exercices to loosen up the tendons and muscles. Emotionnally it is good to develop equanimity. This is because spring is the season of the liver, and indulgence in anger, frustation, depression, sadness, or any excess emotion can injure the liver. Futhermore,violating the natural order of spring will cause cold disease, illness inflicted by atmospheric cold, during summer.”
“In the tree months of summer there is an abundance of sunshine and rain. The heavenly energy descends, and the earthly energy rises. When these energies merge there is intercourse between heaven and earth. As a result plants mature and animals, flowers, and fruit appear abundantly.”
” One may retire somewhat later at this time of year, while still arising early. One should refrain from anger and stay physically active, to present the pores from closing and theqi from stagnating. One should not overindulge in sex, although one can indulge a bit more than in other seasons. Emotionnaly, it is important to behapy and easygoing and not hold grudges, so that the energy canflow freely and communicate between the external and the internal. In this way illness ,ay be adverted in the fall. The season of fire and heart also encompasses late summer, which corresponds to the earth element. Problems in the summer will cause injury to the heart and will manifest in the automn.”
“In the three months of automn all things in nature reach their full maturity. The grains ripen and harvesting occurs. The heavenly energy cools, as does the weather. The wind begins to stir. Thisis the changing or privoting point when the yang, or active, phase turns into its opposite, the yin, or passive, phase. One should retire with the sunset and arise with the dawn. Just as the weather in automn turns harsh, so does the emotional climate. It is therefore important to remain calm and peaceful, refraining from depression so that one can make tje transition to winter smoothly. This is the time to gather one’s sirit and energy, be more focused, and not allow desires to run wild. One must keep the lung energy full, clean and uiet. This means practising breathing exercices to enhance lung qi. Also, one should refrain from both smoking and gried, the emotion of the lung. This will prevent the kidney or digestive problems in the winter. If this is natural order is violated, damage will occur to the lungs, resulting in diarrhea with undigested food in winter. This compromisesthe body’s ability to store in winter.”
“During the winter months all things in nature wither, hide,return home, and enter aresting period, just as lakes and rivers freeze and snow falls. This is a time when yin dominates yang. Therefore one should refrain from overusing the yang energy. Retire early and get up with sunrise, which is later in winter. Desires and mental activity should be kept quiet and subdued. Sexual desires especially should be contained, as if keeping a happy secret. Stay warm, avoid the cold, and keep the pores closed. Avoid sweating. The philosophy of the winter season is one of conservation and storage. Without such practice the resultwill be injury to the kidney energy. This will cause wei jue, consisting weakness, atrophy of muscles, and coldness in spring, manifesting as paralysis, wei/flaccid syndrome, athritis, or degeneration of the bones and tendons. This is because the body has lost its ability to open and move in the spring.”
The second chapter of The Yellow Emperor’s Classic Of Medicine by Maoshing is called “The art of Life through the four seasons”. You will notice that for this blog I have focused largely on this subject since I believe this is one of the main concepts to adopt in order to enjoy a lifestyle which will ensure a good health. Plus, the adapatation to the seasons encompasses a huge amount of Chinese Medicine’s subjects, concepts, ideas… Following those principles is the best way to prevent diseases, if not to cure them.
Daoism has a large influence on Chinese Medicine (the yin-yang concept is generally attributed to the Daoist school). Taoism is based on observing nature and maintaining harmony between man and the constantly changing world. It is the basis for the idea; disharmony equals disease when harmony means health. The Yellow Emperor’s Classic Of Medicine is one of the most important classics of Taoism. The ancient Chinese deeply understood the power of nature, and the union between nature and human life. They understood that protecting and respecting nature is the very same as protecting and respecting oneself.