Modern Civilization, Modern People, and Modern Diseases Part IV14 May, 2012 at 07:59 | Posted in Body & Mind, Chinese culture, Spirituality | Leave a comment
Tags: Body & Mind, Chinese culture, health, psychology, Spirituality
“Violent rage and fury is harmful to yin, while sudden and excessive delight damages yang,” according to an ancient Chinese proverb.
In both modern and traditional Chinese medical practices, emphasis is placed on preventing unhealthy habits. For instance, it is generally believed that those suffering from coronary ailments should not get excited, and those with liver problems should not get angry.
In the view of traditional Chinese medicine, the heart is affected by happiness, the liver by anger, the lungs by sorrow and anxiety, the spleen by thoughts, and the kidneys by fear.
These “five symptoms” are the respective reactions of the five organs to the various emotions we experience. Ongoing strong emotional reactions will produce harmful vital energy and blood flow and will have grave consequences for the body.
Modern medical science has also found that constant changes in a person’s disposition will lead to different responses of the body’s endocrine system, which may result in severe adverse effects on the body.
Unlike our ancestors, many of today’s people are extremely competitive, jealous, tense, and depressed. We can be very ambitious, possessing little self-control and exhibiting strong desires for self-expression.
If we become full of resentment, we may find ourselves continuously finding ways to come out of life situations as a winner, harming those around us and, in the long run, harming society.
Furthermore, modern people are chronically worried about personal loss and gain, which will have a negative effect on their psyche. Such unhealthy sentiments cause disorder to the endocrine system and will, without exception, result in illnesses.
On the other hand, the ancients were very particular about etiquette and morals and maintained self-control. Their behavior was governed by what they understood to be the will of heaven. They were at ease with themselves. They had no high aspirations, did not ask for what was not possible, and did not worry about injustices. Therefore they harbored no resentment.
Also, in ancient society, competitiveness and self-promotion were non-existent. It was a less-stressful environment. The ancients did not exhibit nervous, anxious, or worried behavior, nor did they have feelings of indignation. Thus, we can safely say that the ancients were not harmed by their thoughts or behavior.
Today, however, people engage in harming each other and committing countless karma-inducing acts. In Buddhism, all human actions result in either good karma (“de” in Chinese) or bad karma (called simply karma). The benefits and misfortunes in life, such as wealth or illness, come from the de and karma one has accumulated.
In reality, the naked eye cannot see the entire universe. There are many dimensions that mankind cannot see. The main and collateral energy channels, as well as the acupuncture points discussed in traditional Chinese medicine, do not exist in the body in this dimension. Therefore, modern tools cannot find them. Yet they do exist.
De and karma are also two substances that are part of the body but exist in another dimension. When one does a good deed, one will obtain de. When one does a bad deed, one will obtain karma. A person’s de and karma follow one’s primordial spirit forever.
Modern science is unable to detect other dimensions and cannot confirm the existence of enlightened beings. Modern mankind, under the influence of modern science, will do everything for personal gain with very little consideration for the consequences. People thoughtlessly harm others and thus obtain karma. They do not know that karma is the root of all diseases, sufferings, and tribulations.
One can find the above expressed in many ancient books. Sun Simiao pointed out in his book “Valuable Prescriptions for Emergencies” that the reason that doctors are needed is that people fall sick as a result of their behavior and minds going astray.
Human beings are very stubborn and restricted within the frame of their own perception. They are powerless to address the wrongs in their minds and let go of their preconceptions. They are not willing to improve their morality, despite being sick.
The wind is the cause of all illnesses. When one is quiet, one’s flesh will be tight and will not be harmed by strong winds and disease, according to traditional Chinese medicine.
In modern medical views, “wind” means all pathogenic microorganisms and the symptoms of diseases that develop rapidly, change quickly, and are prone to spasms (earlier referred to as the tightening of the flesh).
This writer believes that wind means karma. When one is quiet and calm, one naturally will not commit bad deeds, will not be afraid of accumulating karma, and will not be affected by poisonous and evil influences. Therefore, not committing bad deeds is regarded as more important than simply observing healthy habits of living.
Along with the development of society, material comforts have become essential to the modern lifestyle. The importance of material wealth has grown exponentially. Moral standards have fallen to an all-time low.
People’s lives have strayed more and more from their inborn nature. In short, people have progressively deviated from the Tao and the Fa (law and principles in the Buddha school).
A sage of ancient times professed: “The principle of yin and yang is the fundamental principle of the universe. It is the law of creation. It brings about the transformation to parenthood. It is the root and source of life and death, and it is found within the temples of the gods. In order to treat and cure diseases one must return to what is fundamental.”
The life of modern people has deviated from yin and yang and destabilized the Five Elements. Out of selfishness, people will stop at nothing, stoop to low levels, and commit all manner of crimes. Such conduct results in illnesses that are difficult or impossible to treat.
In ancient times, sages taught people that harmful influences and evil winds should be avoided, especially at certain times. The ancients were unperturbed, thus the vital force of nature always surrounded them, and their fundamental spirit was preserved within. They did not suffer from illnesses the way today’s people do.
They exercised restraint with a strong will and had few desires. They were at peace and had no fears. They worked hard but did not become weary. Their spirit was at ease. They lived in harmony with their surroundings and followed heaven’s laws. They were satisfied, and their aspirations were met. Their food was appetizing, and their clothing was suitable.
They were happy with their lives. They were satisfied with their stations in life, whether of the lower or upper class. One could say that they were pure of heart. Their purity was such that they could not be tempted. Neither riches nor evil could lure their hearts.
They were without fear. They were in harmony with the Tao. They lived long lives, sometimes longer than 100 years, were always active, and did not become infirm. Their virtue was exemplary.
How does one follow the Tao and the Fa? One should adhere to the law of nature, live a clean, moral life, and cultivate oneself. For example, no matter how poor or rich a family, no matter how many toys a child possesses, or how technically advanced the toys are, 6- or 7-year-old children prefer to play with soil, sand, or simple things they find in their surroundings.
Human behavior has deviated from yin and yang and is destabilizing the Five Elements. People still have the innate desire to return to their original, true selves. In short, it is time for people to return to their true nature and to become attuned with the environment.
However, if society continues to disregard its true nature, human survival will be at risk. The way of returning to one’s true nature will become narrower and narrower.
— Pure Insight
- Modern Civilization, Modern People, and Modern Diseases (Part III)
- Modern Civilization, Modern People, and Modern Diseases (Part II)
- Modern Civilization, Modern People, and Modern Diseases (Part I)