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The five elements

Every human is on the search for something, being either for a lot of money, friends, love, a new house or a new car, - the list could be continued endlessly. However, finally everyone strives, while trying to fulfill his personal desires, for a specific goal, without to be aware of it, namely harmony.

To find this harmony seems to prove impossible for many people, and therefore the internal signs pointing at the own state of imbalance are seldom recognized or are just ignored. Instead, life goes on as usual, one is hunting for material incentives and prefers to enjoy gastronomical pleasures, as one has used to do so at every times.

However, the time will come at which we will get overwhelmed by feelings of aggression, fear, desperation, sorrow or similar moods; the time will come at which we feel unwell and even become sick. According to Chinese medicine, the secret of our health lies in ourselves and our environment all of the time.

The system of the five elements, originating from Taoism, provides the basis for harmony in universe, in nature and in man. All things we are envisaging in our world stand in relationship to each other and contain in each case itself a microcosmic representation of the universe. Accordingly, they are each assigned to the five elements, which means to the basic elements water, wood, fire, earth and metal.

For the human being, this means, that all of his organs, the food he consumes, the emotions he experiences every day, and so on, are in each case assigned to an element. A brief representation of the corresponding connections looks as follows:

chinesische-Medizin-Wasser

chinesische-medizin-holz

chinesische-medizin-feuer

chinesische-medizin-erde

chinesische-medizin-metall

bladder

gall
bladder

small
intestine

stomach

colon

kidney

liver

heart

spleen

lounge

ears

eyes

tongue

mouth

nose

bones

tendones

blood vessels

muscels

skin

fear/
courage

rage/

impatience/
joy

sorrows/
sympathy

sadness/
honesty

blacke

green

red

yellow

white

salty

sour

bitter

sweet

pungent

Since man contains equally a microcosm of the universe, thus representing the fundamental processes in universe, and since the five elements arise from the universe, it follows that man can be analyzed in Chinese medicine in accordance to these elements.

Since man contains equally a microcosm of the universe, thus representing the fundamental processes in universe, and since the five elements arise from the universe, it follows that man can be analyzed in Chinese medicine in accordance to these elements. It is aim of that analysis to clean the organs of the person concerned, and to strengthen them and to bring them into a harmonic balance to each other, for that the energy can flow freely from organ to organ and through the meridians, so-called energy paths, in order to help the body regaining a physically and emotional healthy state of being. The five elements are connected through a specific cycle, in which one element feeds the following one. Water feeds wood, wood serves as fuel for fire, earth is nourished by the ash of fire, earth bears metal and metal produces water. This cycle is called growth cycle.

The second cycle is the controlling cycle, which starts working if energy qi gets blocked within the growth cycle, and thus cannot brought forward to the neighbour element. Within the controlling cycle, wood is controlling earth, earth is controlling water, water the fire, fire the metal and metal is controlling wood.

For both cycles, it is of great importance, that energy qi can flow unhindered in accordance to the laws of the corresponding cycle concerned, and that the elements stand to each other in balance. Because, if this should not be the case, then the unbalanced element takes the missing energy either from the preceding element, the following element or the controlling element, thus intensifying the imbalance and finally causing diseases and problems. Within the human body, the organs function exactly according to this cyclic processes and can either become balanced or destroyed by consumed foods, own emotions and environmental influences.

Every human being has accordingly the possibility of becoming aware of his body and his emotions, of analysing himself and of dedicating himself to his harmonisation with help of natural ways.

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