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3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body

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The TCM Model of the Human Body
Posted August 14, 2017 by Acupuncture & Massage College

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In the rst article of the series, we discussed how Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) was
a form of holistic medicine, since it focused on healing the physical and non-physical
aspects of the human condition. In the second article, we discussed how the di erent
doctrines of Taoism set the intellectual foundation for TCM.

In this article, we will discuss how these ideas form the TCM view of the human body.

Philosophical Paradigms of Traditional Chinese Medicine:

Perhaps the two most important Taoist ideas in Traditional Chinese Medicine are Yin-
Yang and Wu Xing.

Yin-Yang: Just as reductionism forms the basis for Western medicine, the Taoist concept
of Ying-Yang forms the paradigm for Traditional Chinese Medicine. Yin-yang, which
translates into “dark-bright,” describes the idea that everything in nature consists of two
paradoxical phases or energies.

https://www.amcollege.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 1/8

yet polar-opposite elements. everything is made up of yin and yang.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 2/8 . In terms of the human body. also known as the Five Phases or Five Elements. while yang is associated with the upper body and back.3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body Toaist philosophy  holds that yin-yang is inherit in everything  The dual relationship of Ying and Yang is meant to demonstrate that everything in the universe exists as having connected and complementary. The table below demonstrates many of these relationships. Wu Xing: Wu Xing. In other words.amcollege. yin is associated with the lower parts of the body. is notion that the cyclical change of the cosmos occurs in a pattern of ve stages. https://www.

the body is viewed as being composed of https://www.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 3/8 . and then Spring again. The Zang- Fu is discussed in greater detail in this article. which then becomes Fall. Rather than being a strictly physical specimen. which shows how di erent networks in the body are interconnect as a penta-cycle. which turns into Late Summer. it gives rise to Zang-Fu.3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body Wu Xing is important across all areas of Oriental Medicine Using the classical Chinese description of the seasons as an example. TCM Model of the Body Functional Entities: Traditional Chinese Medicine maintains a holistic view of the body. then Winter. it is used for diagnosing and treating illnesses.amcollege. The table below shows some common examples of Wu Xing cycles. Wu Xing demonstrates that Spring gives rise to Early Summer. Similarly. For example. Wu Xing is an extremely important concept in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

They are: 1. and Shen (Spirit). Jinye (Body Fluids). Organs in TCM are viewed by their function. 6 fu organs. The Five Cardinal Functions are: 1. and their functions 3.3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body physical and non-physical substances. Jing-luo: The channels or meridians through which qi ows Each of the functional entities is associated with a cardinal functions. not physical makeup There are three major functional entities in TCM that explains how the human body operates. Actuation–Locomotion of all the physical processes in the body.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 4/8 . Xue (Blood). 2. Zang-fu: A Wu Xing cycle of 5 zang organs. Jing (Essence). The Five Fundamental Substances: Qi. This is especially true of blood and qi https://www.amcollege.

Warming–Regulation of temperature. and stomach. They are the triple burner. There are 8 extraordinary meridians. Fu refers to organs that are yang. Zang refers to organs that are yin in nature. Jing-luo: Each of the Zung-fu pairs has 12 Jing-luo or pathways where qi. small intestine. Defense– Protection against foreign pathogenic elements 4. and every zang-fu pair corresponds to one of the ve phases. heart. urinary bladder. and kidneys. known as the 12 Principal Meridians. The chart below shows this relationship. large intestine. 3.  Zang-fu: For example. and other jinye As such. and breath into qi. especially that of the limbs. and body uids ow through. Transformation–Converting foods. https://www. From these 20 meridians. lung. the functional entities should be viewed as practical roles. blood.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 5/8 . They run from the Zung-fu organs to the limbs and joints. the organs have a We Xing cycle called Zang-fu that demonstrates this relationship well. extends a network of nearly 400 points! The numerous meridians and acupoints are visually represented in the famous acupuncture models that many are familiar with. They are the pericardium. blood. liver.3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body 2. spleen.amcollege. rather than strictly anatomical or biochemical functions. Containment–Preventing excessive drainage of di erent body uids 5. liquid. The functional entities are all interconnected. Each zang has a fu. which connects the 12 Principle Meridians. gall bladder.

 What happens when yin-yang or qi levels become unbalanced? In the next installment of our series.amcollege. Download our free guide below or call our admissions o ce in Miami. we will discuss the Traditional Chinese Medical view of illness and methods for diagnosis. we will expand and discuss these holistic concepts in greater detail. functional entities.3/20/2018 The TCM Model of the Human Body  An exact replica of models used in our Miami classrooms The relationship between yin-yang. FL at (305)-595-9500 to learn more.  If you nd this blog series interesting.  So far.  https://www. Wu Xing. we have assumed a balanced or ziran state of the functional entities. However. in the coming weeks. and the meridians can be complex and di cult to understand at rst.edu/blog/tcm-model-of-the-human-body 6/8 . then perhaps you should consider a career in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.

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