Balancing the body’s energy—we have all heard this phrase. This is essentially what acupuncture does, and it can have profound effects on our health and sense of well-being.
In Oriental medicine, the concept of balance is fundamental to an understanding of health and disease. This is particularly the case with acupuncture, which concerns itself primarily with restoring or preserving health by correcting imbalances in the energy field of the body.
The ancient Chinese felt that everything in the universe was a form of energy, an idea that we find in modern physics. The Chinese word for this energy is chi (also spelled ‘qi’). According to Chinese medical theory, the entire body is a manifestation of chi, and the major currents of chi flow in pathways called meridians. Along these meridians lie points where the chi can be easily influenced. If the chi is out of balance, disease will result. When the chi is in balance, the person will enjoy abundant health. The acupuncturist uses subtle diagnostic techniques to detect disturbances of the chi. Fine needles are then inserted at specific points on the body to re-establish the correct balance of energy.
A mental and physical equilibrium is then established which enhances a person’s sense of well-being, and helps to fight disease. The beauty of such a system of medicine lies in the fact that physical and mental imbalances can be detected and treated before they become clinically-observable diseases. When this is done, a “healthy balance” is achieved, and the body is empowered to heal itself.
The original, longer article on this topic is here.