What's Classical Chinese Herbalism? - Duke's Materia Tonica
January 11, 2019 11:34
Classical Chinese herbalism was invented 5000 years ago by the legendary divine farmer, known as Shennong, who developed the understanding of foods and herbal remedies for promoting health and healing.
Classical Chinese herbalism uses the spiritual classical Chinese medicine system based from Daoism and the cultivation of body, mind and spirit. The classical Chinese medicine system is based in achieving harmony with health through the interplay of the five elements and the forces of nature: 'yin', 'yang', and 'qi'.
Classical Chinese medicine is an interwoven spiritual system of using herbs with food, lifestyle habits, physical practices like qigong, and cultivating energy 'qi' with the knowledge of non-medical acupuncture.
Classical Chinese Medicine is not Traditional Chinese Medicine
Within the Daoist belief system of cultivating harmony, it is a fallacy to assume classical Chinese medicine diagnosed and used fixed treatments for diseases and management of conditions. Commonly, even among experts, classical Chinese medicine and herbalism are confused with allopathy and the medical healthcare system of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) where herbs are prescribed as drugs for use with the intervention of disease causes.
Medicalization of Classical Chinese Herbalism
Medical diagnosis of disease for treatment with herbal remedies was officially written down for the first time in a 500 year old Chinese Materia Medica. Modernization of China with the Kuomintang after 1900 continued the gradual drug medicalization of ancient remedies and practices such as acupuncture. Allopathy was combined with classical Chinese medicine by the Chinese Communist Party in the 1950's to create TCM and the famous barefoot doctors of rural China who used herbs like drugs throughout impoverished areas with inadequate health care.
Classical Chinese Herbalism Does Not Use Intoxicants
Intoxicant herbs are not used in Classical Chinese Herbalism, because they do not have benefits for health, wellness, nor well-being. For example: over the last 2000 years cannabis has been considered an herb that causes inappropriate cravings, insanity, uncontrollable violence, and criminal behavior (hemp is not to be confused with cannabis).