qīng (清)

means primarily “to cool or refresh;” it has come to mean “to clear up (including to count), settle (including accounts), clean up, or purge;” as an adjective it means “pure, clean, distinct, clarified, just or honest” though also “fresh, cool, quiet, and even lonely or poor;” in modern Chinese medicine, qīng (清) refers to the therapeutic method of ‘clearing’ pathogenic factors, especially external ones; when pathogenic factors are not cleared, but instead are retained internally, the embodied spirit naturally generates heat, as we learn from the yangming ‘stage’ of Shang Han Lun.

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