Sifu Dr. Foong conducting a Qi Gong course in HHCC, November 2018.

Traditionally, Chinese medical philosophy for healing is to help a person to restore his/her health. A healthy person should not be sick, whether it is physically, emotionally or mentally.  The principle behind the healing is to utilize Qi or energy to restore good balance from Ying Yang disharmony to Ying Yang harmony.

Some of the commonly used traditional Chinese medical methods for healing are briefly listed as follows: Massage therapy (includes foot reflexology, Tui Na, facial massage, etc),  “Ba Guan” or  Cupping, “Guasa” ,  and Moxibustion.  These are external means or tools. 

The well known and more often used method is  Chinese Traditional Medicine (TCM) which is normally through oral intake, although external application for physical injuries is also common. Another popular treatment is acupuncture, i.e. inserting needles at acupuncture points with the intention to release Qi blockages. 

The rarest of them all is genuine Qi Gong healing, because the art was a heavily guarded secret, which is not easily accessible by ordinary people. In the past it was only reserved for the emperor and its family in the palace.

All of the above methods for healing have the similar objective: it is to stimulate or generate Qi or energy to circulate or flow so that it could help to break through Qi blockages and restore Ying Yang harmony.

For the case of massage therapy, the function of the massage is to relieve blockage by pressing, slapping, pushing etc. The relief of Qi blockage could only achieve up to a certain level, normally it is good for flesh and bone (e.g. muscles and nerve).  If a person has had some minor pain due to strain and/or stress, massage therapy is a good way for relieving minor pain. There is a well known Chinese saying, “Bu Thong Jiu Tong, Thong Jiu Bu Tong”, literally translated into English it means, “If it is blocked then it is painful, if it is unblock no more pain”. Many people engage massage therapy as a way for relaxation. In general, it does not work deep enough into the root and may not be lasting enough to overcome serious sickness.

Other methods often use to promote Qi circulation on the surface (i.e. flesh, bone and nerve ) of a person are Guasa, Ba Guan or Cupping and moxibustion.  All the above methods are performed using an external object to enhance or promote Qi flow so that the blocked Qi could be unblocked. Guasa is performed by using a piece of semi-hard materials but with good ductility (e.g. wood or plastic). The tool is used together with oil, where a therapist will perform unidirectional strokes using the tool with some pressure to stroke on the patient’s body. The repeating strokes will promote Qi and blood to circulate simultaneously.

Ba Guan or Cupping applies the concept by creating difference in pressure to promote Qi circulation. One way is to use a heated up glass cup and place it on top of the surface of the person’s body. The other is to use a vacuum type of pumps through a cup. The cup is placed against the body of a person when the pressure difference created by the suction of the pump, the cup will suck on to the person’s body.  Normally, the treatment is performed for about 30-45 minutes.

Other methods using a similar concept is heat. This method is often referred to as moxibustion.  A heated roll is placed at acupuncture points.  This application is using heat at the acupuncture points with the intention of stimulating and inducing smoother flow of Qi or blood circulation.

Chinese Medicine is generally used for oral intake to promote Qi circulation so that the body could achieve yin yang harmony. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treatment, the TCM doctor will first diagnose the health problem of the patient. Then the doctor will determine the causes or reasons why that person is in ying yang disharmony. Often the TCM doctor uses his fingers to sense the patient pulse rate at the wrist of the patient, analyzes the patient’s eyes and tongue.  

The TCM doctor will then prescribe a numerous combination of relevant herbs with an appropriate quantity to be boiled together. The medicine shall be boiled under slow fire from a certain amount of water reduced down to a certain amount of liquid through evaporation ( e.g. boil from 3 bowls of water down to 1 bowl of liquid). Once the medicine is ready, the patient should drink the medicine while it is still warm. The intention of the medicine is to promote Qi circulation within his body. The medicine will enhance Qi to be delivered to the weak part of the patient’s organ and restore yin yang harmony.

One of the most popular and fascinating methods in TCM is the acupuncture. Acupuncture was first used in surgery operation as a substitute for anesthetic, which has amazed many Western medical doctors.  How could such a fate achieved by just inserting a few needles into the person’s body?  In fact, acupuncture has been used in Chinese medical treatment in China for more than a thousand years ago.  Acupuncture is normally used to relieve blockage along meridians by inserting thin needles at relevant energy points passing through the meridians. The purpose is to release or unblock the “Blocked Qi” and promote Qi to flow and consequently enable to achieve yin yang harmony of a person.

Genuine Qi Gong healing treatment is a holistic approach, where the actual cause of the sickness may not be necessarily fully diagnosed.  A good idea of the problem will be sufficient for the treatment to be successful. Qi Gong healing is a combination of the following. A master will help to open vital energy points and transmit Qi to the patient, followed by applying spontaneous Qi flow or “Wu Wei” (let it be). Qi will flow naturally to the most needed part of the body. Once Qi is well replenished at the weak part of the organs, it will then nourish and restore the person to be back into Yin Yang harmony. 

For discussion purpose, let us say a person has high blood pressure.   In TCM we believe that  high blood pressure is due to his energy in the liver with too much Yang Qi,  In order to balance its Yin Yang harmony, Ying Qi should be delivered into his liver or on the other hand reduce the Yang Qi. In Qi Gong healing, a master will open his relevant energy points and transmit some Qi to the person. After that the master will devise a suitable Qi Gong exercise that is good for the liver for that patient to practice. With proper guidance and practice, the patient will be able to recover from the sickness as a matter of course.

Genuine Qi Gong is the highest level of Traditional Chinese Medical treatment.   It does not require pin point accuracy to diagnose the cause of the health problem, because Qi Gong healing is holistic, and not only to help the patient to recover from sickness.  It will restore the patient’s health (physically, emotionally and mentally).  A person who has undergone Qi Gong healing and has recovered from sickness, will have spiritual joy and will be full of happiness. The holistic healing approach will improve the physical, emotional and mental conditions of a person, strengthen his immune system and even encourage good cell production.

Dr Foong Tuck Meng. Article No. 2

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