Chapter 49 Explanation of the vessels

Chapter 49 Explanation of the vessels

The channels are being described with the hexagrams and 12 branches. Fabulous!

Using the Hexagrams from the I Ching gives us a visual image of the relationship between yang and yin. The six divisions used in the Yellow Emperor’s Classic each has its own unique image.  

Tai yang

 Tai hexagram, Yin branch, the first month

The first month is tai yang, is yin. In the first month the yang qi comes out above while the yin qi abounds. The yang has not reached its own turn of domination yet.

Wang Bing, During the first month, the third yang qi is generated. It is responsible for setting up the yin as the first month of the year. The third yang qi is called tai yang. Hence the text states, Yin is major yang.

The first month occurs in the winter which is a yin time period. Yang qi is rising and there is a balance between yang and yin. Three yang lines and three yin broken lines. Notice yang ming contains more yang lines than tai yang. Yang ming is seen as a combining and closing of yang qi.

Shao yang  

Bo Hexagram, Xu branch, the ninth month

In the ninth month the yang qi is exhausted and the yin qi abounds.

The shao yang abounds. As for abounds, that is an external sign of the condition of the heart.

In shao yang the yang qi is being born again after it has been in storage for recovery in the winter. It is exhausted and goes into storage and it is reborn in spring.

Yang ming  

Gou Hexagram, Wu branch, the fifth month

The yang ming is wu. The fifth month is the yin of the abounding yang. When the yang weakens in the fifth month and when the first yin qi rises it starts to struggle with the yang. At this time the yang abounds and yin qi is added to it.

Yang Shangshan, The yang ming is the head of the three yang. Wu is the fifth month, that is the time when the yang abounds and when it is extensive and brilliant.

Wang Bing, The yang qi descends and the yin qi rises. Hence, the text states, the yang abounds and the yin qi is added to it.

Tai yang represents all the yang in the body. The yang channels come together on the surface in the upper back. Tai yang ensures that yang qi opens which supports function on the surface and in the interior. Yang ming represents this yang qi in the interior.

Tai yin  

Fu Hexagram, Zi branch, the eleventh month

The major yin is zi. In the eleventh month the qi of the myriad beings is all stored in the center.

Wu kun, In the eleventh month, the yin qi greatly abounds. Hence the text states tai yin.

Tai yin opens to receive the descending yang qi. It represents earth, and earth is a combination of soil and water. Remember the trigram of water contains a yang line which symbolizes that the original nature of water is yang. Trigram 6 - Water. 

Shao yin  

Kun Hexagram, Hai branch, the tenth month

The shao yin, that is the kidneys. In the tenth month all the yang qi of the myriad beings is harmed.

Ma Shi, The shao yin is the beginning yin. The tenth month is the second month of winter, it too, is shao yin.  

Yang qi has gone completely into storage in the winter. This is represented by all yin broken lines.

Plain Questions, The kidneys rule hibernation. They are the root of sealing and concealing, the dwelling place of essence.

The kidneys rule storage and concealment, thus they are the root of sealing up and concealing. They seal up and conceal the yang qi. They seal up and conceal the essence.

Plain Questions, Yin stores essence and is compounded into being, yang defends the exterior and acts to consolidate.

Jing is neither yin nor yang. Essence is yang qi in stored form. Or in other words, the stored form of energy is essence.

Jue yin  

Guai Hexagram, Chen branch, the third month

Ceasing yin is chen, the third month is the yin in the yang.

Zhong Zhicong, The third month is a time when yang abounds while jue yin rules the qi. Hence, this is yin in the yang.

Plain Questions, The liver is the root of dismissal of the ultimate, baiji, and the domain of the hun soul.

Jue yin is the root of the baiji, dismissal of the ultimate, and the bai ji brings about the transition from a state of storage to a state of rebirth. It re-initiates the entire cycle of birth, growth, harvesting, and storage.

Ba, means to cease or to end. Ji, means ultimate or extreme. The ultimate, ji, is the maximum or farthest point. The end of a traditional Chinese year, coinciding with the end of winter, is the most extreme point in that year, and corresponds with the chou period.

Plain Questions, The liver holds the office of general, planning and deliberation originate from it.

By getting rid of polarities, the liver also does away with conflicts and chaos. The general and the root of dismissal of the ultimate are referring to the same thing.

Published by Paul Freedman

Herbal Nerd

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