Traditional Japanese Medicine is a form of natural
therapy that aims to promote natural health- it is considered an alternative
and natural treatment used to enhance a happy and healthy lifestyle.
Traditional Japanese Medicine is rooted in mythology
and the indigenous religion, Shintoism (meaning 'way of the gods'),
which holds that everything in nature has a soul or spirit.
Welcome to Traditional
Japanese Medicine at Natural Earth
has it that the creator deities Izanagi and Izanami produced an
offspring, Amaterasu, the sun goddess who became the supreme Shinto
deity. Ancient people evolved various offering and purification
rituals in her honour, to ensure good crops and good health.
Illness was attributed to impurity, malevolent spirits and disgruntled
deities. Earliest healing traditions, described in the Kojiki (Record
of Ancient Matters), were purification and bathing rituals, exorcism
and herbal remedies.
Medical ideas brought to Japan by Korean and Chinese monks and
physicians in the 5th and 6th centuries and European missionaries
in the 16th century were studied and adapted until unique Japanese
Concepts of the body
Japanese medicine has borrowed from Chinese medicine the concepts
of yin ('in'), yang ('yo'), the five elements and chi ('ki'). But
it has also developed its own unique emphases, variations and innovations
in terms of medical theory and practice, and integrated these with
Shinto and Buddhist ideas.
concept of ki is central and is incorporated in many Japanese words:
genki (good flowing ki) means healthy, while byoki (blocked ki)
means disease. Ki flows in the body through meridian channels and
the Japanese have identified several additional meridian pathways.
Disease patterns are described in terms of two main parameters,
kyo (deficiency) and jitsu (excess), with kyo being by far the most
important and the main focus of diagnosis and treatment. Cleanliness
and purity are seen as the keys to health alongside correct eating,
behaviour, respiration, exercise and spiritual devotion.
Observation (bo-shin) of the tongue, face and gait, and palpation
(setsu-shin) are the two most important forms of diagnosis. Observation
includes unique forms of microdiagnosis using the fingers and toes.
Palpation includes pulse taking, similar to Chinese medicine but
different in technique, and also a uniquely Japanese form of abdominal
diagnosis. Other diagnostic methods include listening and smelling
(bun-shin) and questioning (mon-shin).
The aim is to bring one's life back into balance and in harmony
with the laws of nature. This is achieved through adapting the home
environment, diet, breathing and other exercises, hydrotherapy and
spiritual exercises and by using therapies to treat underlying kyo
Exposure to the beauty of nature is considered paramount and home
environments are designed to be calm and uncluttered. Spa baths
are popular; many are outdoors and use seasonal plants such as ginger
to make warming baths in winter.
Dietary therapy recommends eating seasonal foods and balancing
foods from land, sea and mountain. Macrobiotics classifies foods
according to their in/yo properties and advocates an increase in
alkaline foods to make the body less acidic.
medicine (kanpo) is highly evolved and has become mainstream. Unique
forms of massage, manipulation and acupuncture also have been developed.
Energetic healing, including reiki, is popular.
medicine isn't well known outside Japan, but certain types of Japanese
therapy have become popular in the West, especially shiatsu and
reiki. Japanese herbal medicine (kanpo) is now taught in the West
and has been extensively researched in Japan and incorporated into
mainstream medicine for the treatment of many common diseases. Some
Western acupuncturists use Japanese techniques.
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about Traditional Japanese Medicine
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or alternative therapy. We wish you Good Luck... and Good Health.