Chinese Medicine view of the internal organs as energy systems

11/1/2014 notes from TCM school:
Zhang organs: Heart, Liver, Lung, spleen, kidney.
Fu organs: stomach, gall bladder, urinary bladder, large intestines, small intestines.
Zhang- store essence.
Fu- function “administration center”
Yang organs fill and empty, Yin organs store vital substances: qi, blood, jing, fluid, and shen.
Western medicine views organs materially and anatomically.
Eastern medicine view is of a complex energy system.

Body types when meeting new patients:
Fat person- more damp energy.
Skinny person- heat.
Pale skin- lung deficiency.
Dark skin- abundant kidney qi.

Organ and tissues:
Heart governs blood and blood vessels and tongue/taste.
Liver stores blood and supports sinews and eyes/sight.
Lung gathers Qi, it influences fluids, the skin and nose/smell.
Spleen- governs food qi, holds blood, and supports the muscles and mouth/gums.
Kidneys- stores essence, influences fluids. Supports bones/teeth and ears/hearing.
Athletes need more liver formulas as “sinews is also muscles, tendons, ligaments and cartilage”.

Organs and the 5 basic external and internal causes of disease:
Liver- affected by wind.
Heart- heat.
Spleen- dampness.
Lungs- dryness
Kidney- cold
Mind is also heart.
Joy- excessive joy imbalances the heart.

Heart governs blood, menstruation, houses the shen, controls the vessels.
heat blood stasis- hardening of arteries.

heart affect complexion of face:
heart blood deficiency: dull pale face.
heart yang deficiency: bright white face.
Heart blood stasis: purplish/dark face.
Heart heat: Red face.

Joy mental state: it is a mental state that favors a smooth function of the internal organs and mental faculties.
-excessive excitement and mental stimulation injures the heart.
-unrestrained feelings- stir up the minister fire to flow up and over stimulate mind.
-excessive joy over stimulates the heart causing enlarged heart.
-Sudden joy causes Yang Qi to float, over dilation of heart and vessels, pulse becomes slow and empty.
Dreams are caused by excessive or deficient heart blood.

Heart houses the “shen”- consciousness, thinking, affections, memory.
Lungs are delicate and they loath cold.
Lungs control 100 vessels.

-diffuse qi to the ‘Cou li’ space (between muscle and skin), help defensive qi fight external pathogenic factors (EPF).
-diffuse body fluids to cou li as sweat.
-Regulate water passage via descend Qi to kidneys for breathing, kidneys ascend fluids to lungs for moisture.
-lungs descend fluids to the bladder for urination.
-Qi can ascend, descend, enter and exit cause of lungs.
-Lungs make sure all organs get qi and fluids.
-They fight EPF at the level of skin.
-Lungs govern the qi in the channels, nutritive qi. Deep breathing during acupuncture can assist in the treatment.
The lungs ensure the ascending and descending of qi, entering and exiting of qi, qi to the organs, free movement of qi, regulate qi, and communication to kidneys.

Regulate Nasal mucus:
Normal is a properly moistens and lubricated nose with normal mucus secretion.
Impaired Lung: diffused and descending impairment causes stuffy nose, accumulated build up.
Lung heat/phlegm heat- thick yellow mucus.
Dry Lungs- mucus is insufficient.

Lungs- Emotion of worry/sad:
Worry will “knot” up the Lung Qi causing tightness in the chest, tension in the shoulders.
grief and sadness: deplete the Lung Qi making a breathless feeling, tired. pulse will be weak, voice weak.
All three of those emotions cause Qi stagnation in the chest, a type of tightness.

Lungs house the ‘corporeal soul’ (po) responsible for sensations, sight, physiological activites, enter and exit of jing.

Liver is a resolute organ.
Liver loathes wind.

Liver stores blood, regulates smooth qi flow, helps sinews, assists eyes, associated with anger.
Affects menstruation:
1. Liver blood is normal: menstruation is normal.
2. Liver blood deficiency: scanty or amenorrhea.
3. Liver blood stasis: painful period.
4. Liver blood heat: heavy period.

Liver ensures smooth Qi flow and the opposite is Liver qi stagnation. Liver helps the other organs in supporting their qi direction. It helps spleen energy rise, heart descend, stomach down, kidneys up.
Liver rising up to head: red face, temper, stroke, repressed anger all affect liver.
Liver controls sinews. If liver blood deficient: muscle cramps, numbness, if liver blood stasis muscles will be stiff.
Wind affects Liver, wind pathogen is pain that moves around not fixed in one place.

Ethereal soul (hun) resided in the liver and is responsible for planning, sleep, projects, life goals.


Eating- preferred way to eat is 5 to 6 small meals, rather than 3 huge meals, this creates less load on spleen and stomach.
Spleen determines appetite, nourishment/malnourishment.

Spleen likes exercise after meal to nourish limbs, distribute qi to limbs.
Spleen also likes regular intervals of food, same time each day, no skipped meals, regular sleep times. Spleen does not like skipped meals, irregular fasting, irregular sleep.

Spleen-clear fluids, up to the body, lungs and skin. Turbid fluids down to intestine.

Spleen transports food essences to all muscles. More you move limbs the stronger you get. If spleen is weak, there will be weariness in muscles in extreme cases atrophy.

Pensiveness- to much thinking, worry, obsessiveness injures the spleen, knots qi in the middle burner.

Spleen houses the intellect (Yi)- study, memory, concentration and focus.

“Spleen loathes dampness”
“Governs the 4 limbs”
“Root of post heaven Qi”
“Spleen likes Dryness” (especially weight management.
-stores essence
-governs birth growth, reproduction and development.
-marrow in brain and bones.
-governs water and the reception of qi.

Zhi- will power, determination, tenacity, single mindedness. Opposite is timid, no courage.

“Kidneys control open and close”
“Kidneys loath dryness”
“Kidneys control strength, skill, and stamina.”
“Kidneys are the root of pre-heaven”
Pericardium (PC):
Xin zhu- envelop of the heart.
-protective membrane around the heart
-governs blood and houses the mind.
-points invigorate or cool the blood.
-points invigorate or calm the mind.

important acupoints:
Pc6- invigorates blood.
PC3- cools the blood.
PC5- reduces phlegm, “mist of the mind”.
Theory of “mist of mind”: Shen “mind” escapes heart, due to negative emotion (anger, worry, fear, etc.) leaves a hole for phlegm to enter. PC5 will help this which in extreme cases causes manic disorders and delirium.

Mind/spirit and blood relationship of Pericardium:

PC Blood deficiency- depression/anxiety.
PC Blood heat- insomnia, agitation.
PC Phlegm- mental confusion. Emotional problems from relationships.

Ba Mai- “Uterus vessel” is part of Pericardium in women.
PC fire- causes heavy periods.
PC deficiency- amonorhea, scanty period.
Blood stasis: painful period, cramps.
Emotional issues: affects menstruation cycle.
Yin organs interrelationships

1. Heart and lungs: heart is blood, and Lungs is Qi. Heart and lungs are important for athletes. Gathering qi is in the chest. Herbs to tonify blood.
2. Heart and Liver: Liver blood deficiency will cause heart blood deficiency aka depression.
Heart/mind/shen- recognizes and controls emotions, the liver ensures smooth flow of emotions. Ethereal soul of the liver is the ‘coming and going” of the mind.
3. Heart and Kidney- essence is the basis of a stable mind, and mind influences the essence. Menstral cycle: heart/kidney is essential. Kidney is the origin of menstral bloods ebb and flow. Heart controls Yin/Yang, Yin to yang in ovulation, govern Qi, commander of blood storage. Tian gui is the name of kidney/uterus blood.
4. Liver and Lungs: Lung qi descends, liver qi ascends, it is a mutual relationship. Stagnation occurs, lung qi going up is cough.
5. Liver and spleen: Liver stores blood, Spleen makes blood. Liver flow assists spleen, spleen helps liver qi flow. Digestive points for spleen/liver/middle jiao: ST36, LI4, LV3.
6. Liver and Kidneys: Blood-Liver, Essence- kidneys. Stamina. Essence helps make blood. Gynecology- kidney origin of Tian gui and menstral blood, liver provides blood to the uterus. Liver and Kidney are close to Ren mai and Chong mai channels.
7. Kidney-Liver: Deficient kidney essence: dizziness, blurred vision, Tinnitus.
Kidney Yin deficient- causes Liver deficient Yin.
Liver deficient Yin- hyperactivity
Liver yang rising: dizziness, headache, blurred vision.
Deficient Liver blood: cause weak kidney, deafness, nocturnal emission.
8. Spleen and Lungs: Lungs govern the Qi and decend down, spleen Qi goes up to lungs. Deficient spleen qi can manifest as phlegm in the lungs.
9. Spleen and Kidneys: Kidneys is the source of pre-heaven Qi and heat to spleen. Spleen is the root of post heaven Qi, and help kidneys excrete. Spleen supplements Qi to kidneys.
10. Lung and kidneys: Lungs send Qi down to kidneys, kidneys send qi to lungs for moisture.
11. Spleen and heart- spleen makes blood (food qi to heart), Heart governs blood (nourishes spleen), heart yang moves blood, supports spleens transformation of food essence.

Emotions associated with organs in TCM:
Liver is Anger.
Lung is worry, grief, sadness.
Heart is excessive joy.
Kidney is courage determination, opposite is fear.
spleen is pensiveness, over thinking, obsession.
pericardium- emotional protection.
small intestines- clear judgement/ discriminating choices.
stomach- shutting self from outside world.
Large intestines- letting go.
Gall bladder- decision making to act.
urinary bladder- jealousy , long standing grudges.
Triple warmer- outward toward others or inward towards self.

Organs as government officials:
1. Heart is like a monarch it governs the shen (mind).
2. Liver is like a Army general from with strategy is derived.
3. Lung is like a prime minister in charge of regulation.
4. Spleen is like a granary official from which the 5 tastes are derived.
5. Kidney is a the strong official from which ingenuity is derived.
6. Pericardium is the ambassador from which joy and happiness are derived.
7. Stomach is the official in charge of food and the 5 flavors.
8. Small intestines is the official in charge of receiving, being filled, and transforming.
9. Large intestines is the official in charge of passage and conduction.
10. Gall bladder is the upright official who makes decisions.
11. Urinary bladder is the district capital, it stores fluids which are excreted by the power of qi transformation.
12. Triple burner is the official in charge of irrigation and control of water passages.

Organ imbalances and affect on dreams:
Heart: deficient- dreams of fire, smoke, fire in the dream.
Excessive: laughing.

Liver- Excessive- angry dreams
Deficient- unable to get up, or laying by trees.

Lungs: deficient: weeping, killing, battles.
Excessive- worry, fear, flying, gold bjects.

Spleen- Weak- hungry, house building.
Excessive- singing, heavy weight feeling, mountains.

Kidneys: weak- swimming, ship wreck, plunging in water, scared.
Excess: detached from body, spine detached.

Stomach- dream of large meals.

Small intestines: weak- large cities
If you have a parasite: crowds, fights, mutual destruction.

Large intestines: weak- open fields.

Gall Bladder- weak: fights, trials, suicide.

Urinary bladder: weak: dream of voyages.

Triple warmer: dream of flying if emptiness in lower burner.
Dream of falling if fullness in lower burner.

About Administrator

Coach Matt Stampe is a Database Administrator and I.T. professional. In the world of Bodywork, he has been a Certified Massage Therapist (CNT) licensed with the Virginia Board of Nursing, and has a “Master of Science in Acupuncture” (MSA) at Virginia University of Integrative Medicine ( He is a candidate with the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM). He has taught hundreds of people Authentic Yang Tai Chi Kung Fu for over 25 years. He was President of the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Martial arts club, Secretary and Treasurer of USA chapter of Yongnian Association under Sifu He Weiqi. Experience includes: Kung fu schools: Omei Shaolin (Sifu Lu Xiaoling) 3rd degree Black Sash, Chinese Martial Arts Institute (Sifu Clarence Burris), United States Wushu Academy (Coach Christopher Pei), and Qi Elements (Sifu Nancy Bloomfield), Former Head Coach: Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation centers(Adults Tai Chi), Hope Chinese school (kids classes), NOVA MMA gym in Arlington (kids classes), and VUOM Martial Arts Tai Chi club (Fairfax). He has positively impacted peoples lives whether for health, sport, strength, combat, and spirit. As a true combat athlete, he teaches methods so people can be confident to defend themselves.
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