Qi is an important fundamental and essential concept but it is complex and therefore difficult to translate. It is often translated as energy, life force or vital force but I shall use the word « energy » as it the most frequently adapted meaning for Qi in our society.
Qi is responsible for all the dynamic and metabolic life activities induced by the interdependence of yin and yang. This activity helps all phenomena and every human being to grow, develop and change.
Therefore, energy is the key to the maintenance of good health.
The 5 functions of Qi:
Acupuncture mobilizes the patient’s own energy to enable him to restore the balance of yin and yang and regain his health.
Inserting the needle the patient may experience a very slight tingling or swelling sensation or a very mild electric discharge. This is caused by the mobilization of the energy. This sensation comes and goes in a flash.
The Chinese often use descriptive images to portray the flow of Qi as in the image of the river and its tributaries where the water flows freely. Likewise, the energy in the meridians should flow with the same fluidity. The meridians are the channels through which energy flows; in the image above the water represents Qi. The river and its tributaries represent the meridians.