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Got Qi?
March 03, 2006

You’ve probably heard the word “Qi” (or “Chi”) before. It's an important concept in Chinese Medicine, and I hear the word used all the time. I think people like it because it seems so exotic.

There’s the bumper sticker that say’s “Qi Happens!” (I hate that one!)

I have people tell me they "believe" in Qi. (Please don't say that!)

There’s a popular energy drink called “Chi”.

Even scientists are obsessed with it, trying to prove (or disprove) its existence.

Anyway, before you start throwing the word around at fancy, new-age dinner parties, let's make sure you know what you're talking about!

Usually, Qi is translated as "vital energy". Well... that's not quite it.

You see, it’s not really translatable into English, because we don’t have any equivalent concept.

Even though we say that Qi “flows” through the body like a material substance, by definition Qi is closer to a function than a substance.

By definition, "Qi" (as far as health is concerned) is...

(Drum roll, please)

"the attributes of the body responsible for:

movement in the body protecting the body transformation in the body warming the body retention of fluids and other substances holding the organs in place

It’s not a substance causing those functions, but the actual functions themselves.

Since the body obviously has the above functions, there's nothing to "believe” in.

And since functions can’t be seen, then looking for Qi under a microscope or trying to prove Qi exists doesn't really make sense.

In case you're wondering what it means if you have a problem with your Qi, look at the attributes above. You could have (for example):

Constipation, poor circulation, pain, angina (movement in the body)
Catch colds frequently, allergies (protection (from bacteria, etc.))
Fatigue, digestive problems (transformation (of food) in the body)
Cold hands or feet, poor circulation (warming the body)
Incontinence, swelling, excess sweating (retention of body's fluids)
Hernia, prolapsed uterus, mitral valve prolapse, (holding organs in place)

Those are just a few examples.

So, do you think you want to avoid bad habits that damage your Qi?

Do you want to do everything possible to strengthen and protect your "Qi"?

(The correct answer here would be an emphatic "Yes!!!")

I'll be writing about many ways to help you do just that, so stay tuned.

Remember, drugs and surgery often focus on symptoms that occur due to a function problem... not the function problem itself.

If you think you've damaged your Qi (body functions) already, pay attention to these newsletters. You may even want to contact me.

Chinese medicine has thousands of years experience correcting Qi (function) problems. That's what acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine does best.

Now you know about Qi! Throw this one around at your next Mensa meeting and you'll be a hit!

Dr. Bob

Bob Dorris, D.O.M.
Doctor of Oriental Medicine
1430 N.W. 86th Terrace
Pembroke Pines, Fl.

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