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Yang Excess, like Yin Excess, describes a state our bodies reach when trying to change or overcome something with power.
It can be a moment of jubilation, but in Chinese medicine it represents a powerful push to deal with an intolerable situation.
Words that describe Yang and in some cases excess Yang are:
As you can see, they cover quite a range! Also, none of them lasts long, or not very long. The body - and mind - can't maintain Yang excess for long: it's exhausting!
But the theory says that if the symptoms of yang excess do their job, there will be a change to a more satisfactory situation, no matter how pleasurable or painful the actual moment of yang excess was.
The theory also explains that yang excess transforms into symptoms of yin. After the orgasm comes rest; after euphoria, tranquillity; after fever, cooling; after success, satisfaction; after excitement, boredom: after tension, relaxation: after change, stability.
Of course, if the situation cannot resolve in those ways, and yang excess continues, then it leads ultimately to destruction, exhaustion, death. Think of mania that tears itself apart; of continuing fevers that destroy health; of never-ending war that exhausts the combatants; of elation and euphoria that turn you crazy.
Since this site is more about physical than spiritual or mental matters, it tends to concentrate on physical causes of disease. But emotional matters can strongly affect how your body reacts - see what happened to me further down the page.
Mostly, excess Yang is accompanied by Heat.
Why? Because your body strives to clear them by 'turning on' its full power, in combat as it were. Of course this can also happen by mistake as a result of medication or in reaction to other treatment.
If the pathogenic factor is external, it's easier to see this process and to understand it.
Their bodies, exuberant with energy, 'pile' into the invader without hesitation: sometimes to the alarm of parents, because the fevers produced can rapidly go very high.
The wrong diet/nutrition can set the process off.
Someone who eats too much hot-type food (usually this is spicy, fatty and meaty food, lacking compensatory cool foods like vegetables and fruit) or alcohol (which is also heating), can begin to produce symptoms of heat, such as eczema or a hot rash.
If they keep eating the wrong foods, their diet will ultimately affect their behaviour, leading towards what you might call a kind of mania: certainly rather excitable behaviour, often unreasonable.
Emotions. Who would have thought that emotions can be so heating, but they can!
If you are healthy and balanced, your body will exteriorise the symptoms. That means that if the cause is a relationship or situation, you'll deal with it assertively which will lead to effective changes.
If your body has produced symptoms, those will also be exteriorised as a rash or a fever, or eczema or some other sign of heat such as offensive and urgent bowel movements.
These can be embarrassing and unwelcome, but this is how your body is designed: to keep the problem as far from the centre as possible. You don't want a rash on your liver organ for example!
If your body can't exteriorise the problem, either because of impossible circumstances, or because of infirmity or age, then the Yang Excess will start to interfere with your Zangfu organs.
The basic symptoms common to all kinds of excess Yang are:
Which zangfu organs are most likely to be affected?
So, if you notice any of these happening, head for your nearest experienced acupuncturist! Or seek help from someone who can give you objective and helpful advice.
Remember, it's all too easy to get medication from your doctor. Taking medication to quell excess Yang is not a good idea, except in absolute emergencies. Medication is often suppressive - it's supposed to be! So first read our page on Suppression.
If you live in the Edinburgh area of Scotland, where the author of this site (and of the books described below) works, click on Edinburgh Acupuncturist.
If you live elsewhere, click on BAcC.
Please note! The Kindle editions are less easy to read! Although the paper editions cost more, they are much easier to read and to refer back and forth to the contents and index.
Here are some of the books Jonathan has written:
Still only one comment, though personally I think this is my best book so far.
Published 1986 and, amazingly, still selling. Was apparently used back then by at least one acupuncture college to help students understand Chinese medicine!
No comments yet: just published. (Despite the lurid cover, it explains the five main types of phlegm and what works best for each type. I hope it's easy to read and will be much more useful than all the websites on the subject.)
3000 years of Chinese being stressed, and at last, here's a book showing how all that experience can help you!
By the author of this website, it explains in simple English how to use stress to improve and enhance your life.
NB You can also order 'Qi Stagnation - Signs of Stress' from your bookseller.
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