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The philosophy of Wing Chun Kung Fu. The Doctrine of Yin and Yang, and the Principles of Chinese Medicine

  Автор admin
Раздел Боевые исскусства
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The ancient Chinese, like their modern counterparts, sought a way to understand and explain the world around them, principle and purpose in the changing pattern of events around them, and order in the chaos of existence.
The most powerful principle used to explain the cause and effect of events was that of the interplay of Yin and Yang, two opposite but complementary forces whose relationship and mutual ascendancies are continually changing.
Yin is negative, passive, weak, receptive; Yang is positive, active, strong, creative. Neither can exist without the other, and each, even at its most abundant, contains the seed of the other.
As Yin and Yang compete and cooperate in the manifestation of all things, so events occur in cycles, with various attributes and tendencies gaining ascendancy, and then diminishing. It was the legendary Huang-Ti, the Yellow Emperor, who first documented the cyclical nature of existence and its manifestation in the Five Elements: Metal, Water, Wood, Fire, and Earth. He noticed at various times the ascendancy of different types of life, and their associated colours; at one time, earthworms and burrowing insects were abundant, the force of Earth being strong; later, grass and trees were abundant, the force of Wood in full ascendancy. Later. metal blades appeared in the waters of the palace, and so on.
This concept of five elements or types applies to all types of things and ideas. For example, with each element is associated a colour (metal – white, water – black, wood – green, fire – red, earth – yellow), a direction (in order, West, North, East, South, Centre), a taste (acrid, salt, sour, bitter, sweet), and similar related categories for every imaginable attribute of reality – emotions, animals, senses, foods, etc.
Simplistically, Chinese Medicine is based on the five elements and their balance or harmonious interaction. Each element corresponds to a Yin organ (lung, kidneys, liver, heart, spleen) and Yang organ (colon, bladder, gall bladder, small intestine, stomach). In a person in good health, ch’i or internal energy flows through meridians, or invisible energy channels, to nourish all parts and organs of the body. Illness results from blockages or imbalances in the flow of ch’i, leading to an overabundance or deficiency of the energy corresponding to a particular element or elements.
Ch’i is an intrinsic energy, or life force. While invisible and intangible, it permeates all living creatures, and is inseparable from life itself. Almost all Eastern martial arts include exercises to develop, cultivate, store and channel ch’i. An adept practitioner can channel his ch’i to vastly augment his/her strength, endurance, and destructive power.
Simplistically again, the smooth flow of ch’i is regulated by two cycles.
• The Sheng cycle produces and augments the different types of chi within the body. In esoteric terms, metal melts to produce liquid, or water; water in turn nourishes plants (wood); wood adds fuel to the fire; and from fire comes ashes, or earth.
• On the other hand, the Ko cycle causes the mutual retardation of the different types of energy. Metal cuts down wood. Water destroys fire. Wood overruns the earth. Fire melts metal, and earth soaks up water.
Diagnosis of a patient’s maladies involves an external examination, including the quality of the pulse etc., but may also involve evaluation of the person’s emotional state, colour of their complexion etc. A flushed complexion and temperature may mean an overabundance of fire; a cold sweat on the other hand may mean too much water (or a deficiency of fire). Further complexities will determine whether an apparent abundance of one state is caused by an overactivity of one element or the lack of another (the lack of one element allowing another to manifest itself unchecked).
Treatment, like diagnosis, is a holistic process; it may involve dietary recommendations or an alteration to one’s routine, as well as herbal treatments to affect specific types of ch’i, or the use of acupuncture, massage, or moxibustion (the application of heat) to specific points on the meridians to increase or impede the flow of ch’i.
Knowledge of Chinese medical theory and the location of specific acupuncture points is of great value to the advanced Kung-Fu practitioner, as it allows him to control or damage an opponent with far greater efficiency by attacking the acupuncture points. The use of such points is known as Dim Mak; its effective use requires serious study and a certain amount of hand, etc. conditioning to be able to strike with the power and accuracy necessary to cause the desired effect. The use of Dim Mak techniques to cause delayed damage or death is the subject of many Kung Fu stories. While many such stories are certainly the subject of enormous embellishment, there is no doubt that strikes to certain areas of the body may result in only mild pain at the time, but result in severe injury or death later; certain skull fractures may not cause immediate apparent trauma but may result in death later as cerebra-spinal fluid gradually seeps from the skull.
As many of the acupuncture points also coincide with places where the nerves are close to the skin or unprotected by muscles, etc. it is possible to cause significant pain with accurate point strikes or claw techniques to these areas.
Many of the Kung Fu masters of old were also medical practitioners; Dr Leung Jan was one.

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