Yin and Yang: Dichotomous Harmony

Dichotomies exist throughout the universe, whether we are discussing qi or subatomic particles like protons and electrons. Opposites, or what appear to be opposites, are not necessarily opposing forces. In fact, the existence of both is what is needed to create balance and harmony. Yin and Yang are dichotomous energies that comprise qi. An imbalance between these energies can result in qi blockage or stagnation, which in turn manifests itself as discomfort or illness. Every aspect of the human body is composed of both Yin and Yang energies, whether we’re talking about the external structure of the body or the internal organs.

It’s Complimentary, My Dear Watson 

The shape of the Yin and Yang symbol is very significant. It is a circle, clearly divided between both energies, with an element of each in the other (the small circles). What is worth noting here is that only together is the circle whole. It cannot exist if either the Yin or the Yang is absent, becoming lopsided, imbalanced, and incomplete.

Looking at some of the characteristics of Yin and Yang, what do you see? Is it simply a list of opposites? What do the opposing characteristics signify? Well, the short answer is nothing…without the other.

Warmth exists because cold exists. Light exists as a contrast to darkness. The euphoria of happiness is made ever sweeter if we’ve had the bitter taste of sadness. Much in the same fashion, the human body functions properly when the composition of Yin and Yang energies are balanced, thereby maintaining free flowing and balanced qi. As mentioned above, imbalances cause qi blockages and stagnation. If there is an excess of cold in the body, for example, your Yin energies are throwing your body system off kilter. Health and well-being begin with balance.

“In every culture and in every medical tradition before ours, healing was accomplished by moving energy.” – Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, 1937 Nobel Prize Winner in Medicine