主 办:北 京 中 医 药 大 学
ISSN 1006-2157 CN 11-3574/R

JOURNAL OF BEIJIGN UNIVERSITY OF TRADITIONAL CHINE ›› 2018, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (10): 797-802.doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1006-2157.2018.10.001

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The triple burners and four qi paths

Ma Ning   

  1. Chinese Medical Science Foundation, New York NY 10016, USA
  • Received:2018-03-11 Online:2018-10-30 Published:2018-10-30

Abstract: The triple burners (Sanjiao) and the four qi paths (Sijie) are the major cavities and spaces in the human body. They are the most important spaces to accommodate and distribute the defensive qi (weiqi). Triple burners are body cavities: the upper burner (Shangjiao) is the mediastinum; the middle burner (Zhongjiao) is the peritoneal cavity; and the lower burner (Xiajiao) is the general term for the retro-peritoneal cavity. Consistent with modern anatomical nomenclature, Huangdi Neijing (Huangdi’s Internal Classic) named the retro-peritoneal cavity in two terms: lower burner (Xiajiao) and Sanjiao. Xiajiao referred to the perirectal space and Sanjiao referred to retro-peritoneal space. The retroperitoneal space is renamed as “retro-Sanjiao” in this article in order to differentiate the general term of Sanjiao when it refers to the three body cavities. The lower burner is the base of the generation, accumulation and distribution of the defensive qi. Four qi paths are the extension of the upper and lower burners. The abdominal qijie corresponds to extraperitoneal fascia, and the leg qijie refers to the anterior and posterior osteofascial sheathes. The pectoral qijie is equivalent to the endothoracic fascia, and the head qijie refers to retropharyngeal space and prevertebral space etc. Triple burners and meridians are the spaces and routes for the distribution and circulation of defensive qi. Once there is an obstruction in the four extremities, one of the four qi path will open and engage to relieve the pressure of defensive qi, and eventually will involve all of four qi paths. Therefore, it is necessary not only to stimulate the points related to four qi paths, but also has to resolve the obstruction in the body extremities in order to regain the normal circulation of the defensive qi.

Key words: triple energizers, four qi paths, defensive qi, qi thoroughfare

CLC Number: 

  • R224