Traditional Chinese Medicine

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Submitted By lskafori
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The classic Chinese book on medicinal herbs was written during the Ming Dynasty (1152-1578) by Li Shi-Zhen. It listed nearly 2,000 herbs and extracts. By 1990, the latest edition of The Pharmacopoeia of the People's Republic of China listed more than 500 single herbs or extracts and nearly 300 complex formulations

The Early Rise

The development of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) follows the course of Chinese civilization. Acupuncture, acupressure and moxibustion all date to the Stone Age.

In the late 1920s, the Peking Man, an extinct cave man who lived 300,000 to 500,000 years ago, was excavated in Zhou Kou Dien, just north of Beijing. Polished flint-stones, bone needles and bamboo shafts, which are believed to be acupuncture and acupressure tools, were unearthed at the site.

Herbal medicine can be traced to a man named Shen Nung, or the "Divine Husbandman," circa 3494 B.C. He is one of three legendary ancestors of the Chinese people. The other two are Fu Xi, who started animal husbandry, and Shui Ren, who discovered fire. Shen Nung experimented on himself, trying numerous herbs to study their healing effects. Legend has it that he died of herb intoxication. His most ancient portrait and records are now kept at Johns Hopkins University Hospital.

The well-known Yellow Emperor's Classic of Medicine (Hung Di Nei Jing) is the work of the Warring States Period which occurred from 475 B.C. to 221 B.C. Bian Chueh, also known as Ching Yueh Ren, compiled the Difficult Classic (Nan Jing) to supplement the deficiencies in the Hung Di Nei Jing. Bian was the first accomplished acupuncturist on record to bring a patient out of a coma. Another monumental work in this period is the Classic of Mountain and Sea, which described 270 plant, animal and mineral substances with some medicinal applications.

The First Great Leap Forward…...

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