Chapter

Harmony, Not War

Paul U. Unschuld

in What Is Medicine?

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780520257658
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520944701 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520257658.003.0094
Harmony, Not War

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Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) seemed reassuring to the Western nations. Among the accusations of those who despair of modern medicine, one finds dehumanization, antihumanism, detachment from the human, reduction to the inorganic. The loss of the center is also, above all, the loss of central meaning. In today's world, people want more than just reality. They want to know the origin of their illness. Modern medicine cannot offer that. TCM offers a center. It offers meaning. It rejects the inorganic and centers on the life force, qi. It links various complaints and traces them back to one central illness. This gives meaning to the illness and promises a return into the greater balance, without chemicals, without technology in diagnosis and therapy, without warfare or the certainty of collateral damages.

Keywords: traditional Chinese medicine; Western nations; central meaning; origin; illness

Chapter.  520 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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