Chinese Journal of Medical History / Zhong Hua Yi Shi Za Zhi

[This article belongs to Volume - 52, Issue - 5]

Abstract :

The relationship between acupuncture and meteria medica is an important issue for acupuncture and materia medica. In the past few centuries discusstion of the relationship has mainly focused on combining acupuncture and materia medica, and has therefore been less centred on a sufficient understanding of the genernal rationale of acupuncture and materia medica. Ma Shi and Wu Kun, two clinical physicians in the Ming Dynasty, systematically described the relationship between acupuncture and meteria medica in terms of their rationale and principles. They believed that acupuncture and meteria medica shared the same rationale, but they interpreted their ideas from the two ends of the relationship. The former gained insight into materia medica by drawing on acupuncture but the latter identified the nature of acupuncture by using materia medica. Their interpretation of the similarities between acupuncture and materia medica indicated that ancient physicians attempted to integrate acupuncture and materia medica clinically and theoretically and tried to minimise barriers between acupuncture and materia medica, which existed in those times. It is helpful to further understand the relationship between acupuncture and materia medica by examining the interpretation of Ma Shi and Wu Kun and developing reasonable and effective applications clinically