This article tries to provide a brief explanation of the meaning of Jing (精), Qi (氣), and Shen (神) which are known as the Three Treasures (三寶) of Chinese Qigong.
Jing refers to the Essence, or the material substance, from which life is formed. There are two kinds of Jing: Original Jing (元精) is the original essence or material substance that a new born baby inherits from the parents. After birth, the baby (and all the way to adulthood and later death) gets additional Jing, called Postnatal Jing (後天之精), from the food and air taken in by the baby (and later child and adult).
Qi refers to the energy that uses the material substance or Jing to build life as manifested via our human activities, like our motions and our thoughts.
Shen (神) refers to spirit, or the conscious and subconscious mind. This is applicable to humans and the animal kingdom. The plant kingdom does not have Shen. Therefore, Shen is the most important distinguishing feature between various types of living things; it is what makes an animal different from a tree. Shen directs and controls our activities, so that they are not just spontaneous reactions to external stimuli.
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What does Nanking Massacre mean to the current generation? To the average American, it probably means nothing and is something they probably have never heard of before. To the average Chinese American, it probably also doesn’t mean very much except that it might be something that they have heard their parents or grandparents mentioning it during some family meals or gatherings. To the Japanese who are under 45 years old, they probably also don’t know much about it. Is the Nanking Massacre just a historical relic of the past that has no significance in the 21st century, or is it something that has deep significance not only for China, but also for the U.S., Japan, and the whole world?
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