Taoists on Health and Disease
The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine is an ancient text and philosophy on health and disease. The book has lasted through the test of time and been influential for practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine into the modern era and is a required book in many academic medical environments. The book is in the form of a discussion between ‘The Yellow Emperor’, Huangdi, and his physician. They discuss the nature of health, disease, and treatment.
The ideas in the book have a basis in Taoist philosophy. The key to a long healthy life is to follow the natural way of the universe. Health and illness are caused by an imbalance of the two basic forces, yin and yang, and by the influence of the five elements (water, fire, metal, wood, and earth) on the organs of the body.
This Classic of Medicine recognizes that all human bodies follow certain natural rules. Health and disease are influenced by predictable and natural aging processes, as well as the environment. In order to provide an accurate diagnosis, internal processes and external influences need to be understood to properly treat a condition.