The following is from the NEI JING SU WEN ; The Yellow ( Huang ) Emperor’s ( Di ) Classic of Medicine. From ; ‘ A New Translation of the Nei Jing Su Wen “, by Mao Shing Ni, Ph.D.
The Nei Jing is written in a style where as a question is asked by Huang Di and the answer is provided by Qi Bo. The Nei Jing dates from around 215? B.C..
Huang Di inquires ; “ I’ve heard that in the days of old everyone lived one hundred years without showing the ususal signs of aging. In our time, however, people age prematurely, living only fifty years. Is this due to a change in the environment, or is it because people have lost the correct way of life? “
Qi Bo replies : “ In the past, people practiced the Dao (Tao), the Way of Life. They understood the principals of balance, of yin and yang, as represented by the transformation of the energies of the universe. Thus, they formulated practices such as Dao-in, an exercise combining stretching, massaging, and breathing to promote energy flow, and meditation to help maintain and harmonize themselves with the universe. They ate a balanced diet at regular times, arose and retired at regular hours, avoided over-stressing their bodies and minds, and refrained from overindulgence of all kinds. They maintained well-being of body and mind; thus, it is not surprising that they lived over one hundred years.”
“These day’s people have changed their way of life. They drink wine as though it were water, indulge excessively in destructive activities, drain their Jing- the body’s essence that is stored in the kidneys- and deplete their qi. They do not know the secret of conserving their energy and vitality. Seeking emotional excitement and momentary pleasures, people disregard the natural rhythm and order of the universe. They fail to regulate their lifestyle and diet, and sleep improperly. So it is not surprising that they look old at fifty and die soon after.”
“ The accomplished ones of ancient times advised people to guard themselves against 'ZEI FENG' , disease-causing factors. On the mental level, one should remain calm and avoid excessive desires and fantasies, recognizing and maintaining the natural purity and clarity of the mind. When internal energies are able to circulate smoothly and freely, and the energy of the mind is not scattered, but is focused and concentrated, illness and disease can be avoided.”
“ Previously, people led a calm and honest existence, detached from undue desire and ambition; they lived with an untainted conscience and without fear. They were active, but never depleted themselves. Because they lived simply, these individuals knew contentment, as reflected in their diet of basic but nourishing foods and attire that was appropriate to the season but never luxurious. Since they were happy with their position in life, they did not feel jealousy or greed. They had compassion for others and were helpful and honest, free from destructive habits. They remained unshakable and unswayed by temptations, and they were able to stay centered even when adversity arose. They treated others justly, regardless of their level of intelligence or social position.”
Although this was written over two thousand years ago it seems to be a strange echo in many ways with what we as individuals, various cultures and societies are faced with today around the world.
Our own personal health and well being in many ways has become compromised in today’s world. Our respective physical (planet-earth) environment’s state of health and well being has become compromised. Some would say there is a relationship between our physical world and our own personal health. We have to remember that in order for our way of life to continue and our health and well being the best it can be, there are certain ‘things’ we require.
Good air, good water, good food, good sunlight. Be physically active, get good sleeps, eat 2/3rds full, moderation in all that you do.
Maintain your health, be proactive in your well being, do not wait,
for there is no time such as now.