Author: Liu Tianjun
Qigong Teaching and Researching Section, Department of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine & Pharmacology
Conference/Journal: 3rd World Conf Acad Exch Med Qigong
Date published: 1996
Other: Pages: 157 , Special Notes: Some tables are only in Chinese abstracts. , Word Count: 468

In order to define medical qigong science, it's quite necessary to have a clear concept of medical qigong first. It's obvious that medical qigong is young yet old. This is due to the fact that the modern scientific research on medical qigong has just started, though it has a history of thousands of years in practical application. To give a scientific definition to medical qigong is difficult because of lack of scientific grounds. Fortunately it is possible to define it by way of working hard on its applications.
After making a comprehensive study of qigong documents, ancient and modern, a clue has been found as to mastering the constitution mode of the system of qigong science. By doing so, we may get a general idea of the whole, and the problem will be solved accordingly. Colorful and different as it might be, the contents of medical qigong would always contain the guiding principles for practicing qigong, the method of practicing and the state attained by practicing. This basic constitution model of the system of qigong science remains the same in various schools of thought.
Under the guidance of scientific way of thinking, we come to understand that medical qigong is an academic system based on the expounding of the techniques of qigong practice. That is to say medical qigong deals with the guiding principles the contents and the purpose of practicing qigong. The emphasis is put on the course of practicing other than on its principles. Medical qigong is like modern technique other than basic science.
According to the way of thinking mentioned above, the definition of medical qigong can be inferred from the outline of guiding principles contents and the purpose of practicing qigong. Specifically, medical qigong is the skill of psychosomatic training under the guidance of medical principles, involving mind concentration, breathing and posture as a whole, for the purpose of heath preserving and treatment of diseases.
There are four main points in this definition. Firstly, medical principles acting as the guiding principles put stress on the scientific nature of medical qigong. Secondly, the unity of mind concentration, breathing and posture as its content draws a distinction between medical qigong and general physical training. So qigong practicing is quite different from physical training. Thirdly, qigong practicing has a special purpose: health preserving and treatment of diseases. Heath preserving refers to health care and anti-aging of healthy people while the treatment of diseases is for the benefit of sick people. Lastly, it points out clearly that medical qigong is the skill of psychosomatic training, laying stress on its practicing aspect rather than on its theoretical aspect.
Now it seems possible for us to define medical qigong science as: the science of studying the historical development, acting mechanism, and practicing skill of medical qigong and its clinical application.