»All illness is related to the state of qi.«
Huang Di Nei Jing
(one of the oldest medical textbooks on the basics of TCM)
The Functional Circles in TCM
In TCM, the term organ goes far beyond its purely anatomical meaning. Individual organs are never considered in isolation, but always in connection with the system as a whole. This is based on the assumption that all organs and all body functions always influence each other. In this context, the organs not only fulfil physical tasks, they also house the various emotional and mental forces that are reflected in our thinking, feeling and behaviour. The entire organ system (“Zang fu”) consists of individual functional circuits.
A distinction is made between five yin functional circuits (“zang”) and six yang functional circuits (“fu”). The yang functional circuits include the stomach, the small and large intestines, the bladder, the gall bladder and the triple warmer. The five yin functional circuits are considered the supporting pillars of TCM. Each of the functional circuits is connected to a main meridian through which the Qi flows through the body.