Posted by: WillowSource on 10/12/2017

How the Scientific Validation of Meridians Impacts Us All - Part 1

How the Scientific Validation of Meridians Impacts Us All - Part 1

by Kyle Post  

I have to admit it. Here I am about to write a series of articles about acupuncture meridians and I’ve never had an acupuncture treatment. It’s on my list. I know people who’ve benefitted from it. But maybe there’s a little bit of fear about how all those needles are going to feel when they’re poked in me? I don’t know.

But I do know two things that everyone with even the slightest interest in alternative medicine should know:

  1. Science has proven the effectiveness of acupuncture and has come a long way in understanding why it works.  We’ve even discovered physical channels in the body that appear to correlate to the meridians!

  1. These scientific discoveries are extremely important to anyone who has an interest in holistic health, not just acupuncture.

In this article we’re going to establish exactly what meridians are thought to be, their origins and why they’re so important to anyone interested in holistic health.  We'll also dip our toes into quantum physics just a bit to demonstrate that the concept of invisible, intelligent energy permeating all things is not necessarily at odds with modern science.  It turns out that Yoda may not have been far off!

In the next article in the series, I’ll get into the exciting science specific to meridians and acupuncture points. But first, let’s build a foundation.

What are Meridians and Who Uses Them?

The meridian system is an ancient Chinese concept that is used in what we now call Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).  Meridians are thought to be subtle energy channels that allow the movement of energy or qi (pronounced “chee”) throughout the body.

When these energy channels become blocked, it blocks the free flow of qi and causes disharmony in the body.  This disharmony, if not addressed, eventually causes physical disease, illness or discomfort.  

Acupuncture uses needles to pierce the skin at particular points along these meridian lines.  These points are called acupuncture points.  The needles in acupuncture help clear blocks in the flow of qi in the meridian energy channels and help restore the body back to harmony and health.

But it’s not just acupuncture that uses the concept of meridians or acupuncture points.

Acupressure uses pressure on these meridian points rather than needles with similar intention and results. Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) otherwise known to many as tapping, also uses acupuncture points to tap and remove emotional blocks stored in the body.  Shiatsu, a massage technique uses acupressure points and meridians as does kinesiology, qigong, t’ai chi, reflexology, herbal medicine, moxibustion, Jin Shin Jyutsu, colorpuncture, eden energy medicine, reconnective healing, certain types of yoga, and more.  

Additionally, in the practice of many energy healing modalities such as reiki, biogenesis, healing touch, craniosacral and chakra balancing, practitioners may knowingly or unknowingly work with the meridian system.

As you can see, the concept of meridians is not isolated to acupuncture but deeply embedded in the overall philosophy of both ancient and modern forms of holistic health treatments.  So any scientific validation of meridians has extremely wide-reaching implications for us all!

Meridians and Qi in Other Cultures

Although meridians and qi are an ancient Chinese concept, the idea of energy, energy channels and energy centers within the body are present in many other cultures under different names.  

For example, In Indian ayurvedic medicine, subtle energy called prana travels through energy channels called nadis.  The crossing point of these nadis give rise to nadichakras otherwise known as chakra’s or main energy centers that many holistic practitioners recognize and work with.  

In ancient Egypt, there was a concept of seven energy vortices in the subtle spine called Sphek Ba Ra (seven souls of Ra) that could be said to correspond to the chakras.  They also referred to Ka as the vital spark of life.

Speaking of that vital spark of life, the word qi is known by similar names across Asia and means roughly the same thing; vital energy.  For example, it’s known in Vietnam as khi, in Korea as gi, and in Japan as ki.  In fact, the word reiki is a combination of the Japanese words rei or “soul” and ki or “vital energy.”  

There are countless other examples, but the point is that many ancient cultures had a belief in a vital life force analogous to our interpretation of the Chinese word qi.

How Quantum Physics Validates Qi

In many ancient traditions, the concept of qi is not confined to the body, but is considered to permeate and connect all things and is intelligent. The idea of a mystical life-force energy may seem hard to swallow for many westerners with a love for science and cold hard facts.  But actually, quantum physics is revealing more and more that what we consider physical reality is mostly just empty space.  In fact, even the most solid object has been confirmed to be 99.999999999% empty space!

And what’s in the so called empty space?  

The answer is surprising.  When scientists create a vacuum and cool it down to absolute zero, where theoretically there should be no vibration and no energy at all, they still detect energy!  This is called zero-point energy and was originally posited by Max Planck in 1912 and first directly confirmed in 1924 by Robert Mulliken.  

Since then, this concept has expanded into the quantum field theory where the fabric of "empty" space is visualized as consisting of interconnected fields of energy.

After that it gets really weird. String theory and entanglement visualizes that all things are made from identical strings of vibrating energy.  And particles can become "entangled" and able to instantly share information with each other faster than the speed of light!  

So to sum up, quantum physics and string theory have found that the very fabric of space is teaming with an energy of unknown origin, everything is made from the same vibrating energy, and everything can instantly communicate with everything else.

This sounds similar to the concept of qi, does it not?

Don’t Worry, There’s a Perfectly Logical Explanation to All This

If you’re now feeling a little uncomfortable learning about meridians and qi because it’s either too “out” there or requires the understanding of complicated quantum physics, don’t fret.  

There’s actually a huge body of scientific evidence that explains how the meridians and qi may work in purely physiological terms, without the need to believe in some mystical energy, invisible channels or understand quantum physics.  Although it may not be the whole story, there’s really no longer any doubt as to how the manipulation of acupuncture points initiate beneficial changes in the physical body.  To read about this, please check back next week for part 2: 

Has Science Proven that Qi and Meridians are just Oxygen and Blood Vessels?

Kyle Post is the co-founder of WillowSource and founder/owner of Origins Healing in East Aurora, NY.  In addition to working as a BioGenesis energy healer, Kyle combines his experiences with energy work and natural health to help those who are feeling stuck in any area of their life gain back their power, joy and self-confidence to manifest the life they desire.

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