Emotions and Chinese Medicine

The emotions are considered the key internal causes of disease in TCM. Emotional activity is seen as a ancient, internal, physiological response to stimuli from the external surroundings. Among traditional limits, emotions cause no disease or weakness within the body. However, when emotions become so powerful that they become uncontrollable and overwhelm or possess someone, then they will cause serious injury to the internal organs and open the door to disease. It’s not the intensity as much because the prolonged duration or an extreme emotion, that causes damage. While Western physicians tend to fret the psychological aspects of psychosomatic ailments, the pathological injury to the internal organs is terribly real indeed and is of primary concern of the TCM practitioner.

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Excess emotional activity causes severe yin-yang energy imbalances, wild aberrations in the flow of blood, qi (very important energy) blockages in the meridians and impairment of important organ functions. Once physical injury has begun, it is insufficient to eliminate the offending emotion to have an effect on a cure; the prolonged emotional stress will need physical action further. The emotions represent completely different human reactions to certain stimuli and don’t cause disease beneath normal conditions.

The seven emotions in TCM are:

Anxiety – Heart
Fear – Kidney
Sadness – Lungs
Worry – Spleen
Anger – Liver

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