Yang-Sheng, Yang Xin (Mind)
The Secret of Health
By Siuan Gee
Many years ago a Chinese Magistrate traveled to Tai mountain. That day he was tired and thirsty, he found a cabin at the foot of the mountain and a man chopping wood in front of the house. The Magistrate walked towed him and asked for some water. The man entered his house and brought a bowl of cold water out. The magistrate said “Thank you” and drank the water. At this time, a twenty something young man came out from the house. He said to the man, “Ye Ye (grandpa), do you have a guest?” The Magistrate was shocked by hearing this, since the man appeared to be about 45 years old. How could he have a 20 years old grandson? He could not hide his curiosity, and could not help but ask:
“Can you tell me how old are you? “
“I am 80 years old, not too old.” The man said with a smile.
The Magistrate got another shock. He Said:
“I am 48 years old, but I looked older than you. What do you eat? Do you have any secret to keep you young?”
The man said:” I eat simple food, live in the hut and work every day. If you ask my secret, maybe I have one. Come on…”
He let the Magistrate came over and held out his hand, than he used his right index finger to
write two Chinese characters “养心(Yang Xin)” in his palm.
The magistrate suddenly realized that there are thousand rules of Yang-Sheng, but it has only one key—Yang-Xin.
“How do I practice Yang-Xin?” He asked the man.
“Keep your mind in peace and your heart happy. Just remember one word “happiness” and then
everything will be fine.”
The Magistrate considered the old man’s advice as valuable as gold. After he went home, he practiced Yang-Xin and found happiness for himself. So many years later, he was still young and healthy.
He lived his 85 years happily.
The above story made me reflect about how nowadays people spend a lot time and money to keep them healthy and young. Yet, its effect is negligible because they forget one simple and natural rule: “Yang-Xin” which means “cultivate happiness”.
Of course when we talk about health, we should not miss anyone of these three elements—–mood, food and movement.
Mood is your mind, your spirit and your psychology, it is the power. Food is the fuel of your body as the gas of car. Move is movement; it is the rule of the universe. If a machine has power and fuel but you don’t use it, it is pile of scrap metal. So three elements one connect another, they help each other and restrict each other. But it seemed the mood is still number one element and the primary thing we should care for.
Mood can be divided into good mood and bad mood. Good mood is happiness, bad mood is sadness. Happiness means health and longevity; sadness always leads to sickness and death. So we should strive to maintain a good mood in our daily life and remove any bad mood just as if cleaning up dirt.
An old saying in China is: “One laugh makes you ten years younger.” Why is this said? The reason is that the joy and happiness can make you healthy and young. We know the human body runs by Qi and Blood. When you laugh, clear Qi rises and turbid Qi descends in your body, which in turn, enhances blood circulation. That is why you are healthy and young.
This shows that happiness is like medicine. Yes, to some degree, happiness is the best medicine in the world. Do you believe it? I do. There is a true story that will solve your doubts.
A nineteen year old Chinese girl was suffering habitual diarrhea after contracting enteritis. She went to see all the western doctors and Chinese doctors she could find. And she tried western and Chinese medicines, massage and acupuncture, almost everything. But she was still not cured. Some doctor even gave her an erroneous diagnosis, saying she had liver problems and suggested she eat more honey. One doctor suggested she eat less meat and vegetables which actually made her condition worse. She read a lot of medical books and realized that she had allergic colitis. It was all from her worries and anxiety about her future, mostly because she disliked her job. Later, she found the right job for herself, and she had a comfortable environment working place. So she was happy, her ten year diarrhea problem was gone.
Happiness is so important, but how do we get it? There are five rules we should keep in our mind.
1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worries.
3. Live simply.
4. Give more and Demand less.
5. Expect miracles in life.
Summarized in one sentence: Stay away from sorrow and find your own happiness. Money is not the most important thing in the world, because it can’t buy happiness or health. If you have a bad environment at office or home, you should try to change it; if you have a dead marriage or bad relationship with your boyfriend /girlfriend, you should leave it, divorce or separate, don’t wait until you are sick or get a cancer that will be too late.
Life is beautiful, let us open our arms to embrace happiness!
Shiuan Gee, Author, Former Journalist and Editor of “Health and Life” Chinese Newspaper. Book: Philosophy Prose Collection “Thoughts on Life”; Documentary literature: “The Night of New Orleans”. Nonfiction: The Report of the Mainland China Intellectuals’ Sex Life Novel ：“The little Sparrow Flew away”. Also as an Amateur Health food cooking chef and Gourmet, she is writing a Dietotherapy book: “Amazing Food—Health Diet 101”, Subtitle “How can get Benefits from Your Daily Diet?”