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The concept of meridians (Chinese: jing-luo 经络) arises from the techniques and doctrines of traditional Chinese medicine including acupuncture, acupressure, and qigong. According to these practices, the body's vital energy, "qi", circulates through the body along specific interconnected channels called meridians. Disruptions of the body's energy flow (such as stagnations, blockages and redirection) are thought to cause emotional and physical illness. To release those disruptions, specific points on the meridians called acupoints, or tsubo in the Japanese practice, are stimulated via needles, pressure or other means.
The Standard Acupuncture Nomenclature published by the World Health Organization listed about 400 acupuncture points and 20 meridians connecting most of the points.
There are twelve meridians on the arms and the legs. Heart, Lung, Pericardium, Small Intestine, Large Intestine, Triple Warmer, Kidney, Spleen, Liver, Stomach, Bladder, and Gall Bladder. Meridians are divided into Yin and Yang groups. The Yin meridians of the arm are, Heart, Lung and Pericardium. The Yang meridians of the arm are: Small Intestine, Large Intestine, and Triple Warmer. The Yin Meridians of the leg are Kidney, Spleen, and Liver. The Yang meridians of the leg are Stomach, Bladder, and Gall Bladder.
The causal relationships between the points on the meridians and the corresponding parts of the body is still debated.
Authors Hernan Garcia and Sierra Antonio argue that the Chinese meridians have their counterpart in the Mayan acupuncture techniques practiced in the Yucatan. They say that the analogous concept is that of wind channels, and that most of the key points in Mayan acupuncture correspond with key acupuncture points in the Chinese meridian model.
- Dillman, George and Chris, Thomas. Advanced Pressute Point Fighting of Ryukyu Kempo. A Dillman Karate International Book, 1994. ISBN 0-9631996-3-3
- Garcia, Hernan and Antonio, Sierra. Wind in the Blood - Mayan Healing & Chinese Medicine. Redwing Books, 1999. SBN: 1-56643-304-2
- Lo S.Y. (2002) Meridians in acupuncture and infrared imaging. Medical Hypotheses 58(1):72-76.
- Nuclear Medicine & Acupuncture: A study on the migration of radioactive isotopes after injection at Acupoints Nuclear Medicine & Acupuncture.
- Meridian Pathways Images showing the pathways of the 12 main meridians plus the Ren and Du Meridians
- Science of meridians
- The Mechanism of Acupuncture
- A meridian chart
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