wēi (微)

means “small, slight, minute, trifling, subtle, or obscure;” it is used with “I” or “my” to express humility, which is the bearing of someone needling for ‘subtle’ déqì (得); wēi (微) appears in both Língshū 1.3.1 and 1.3.4; Wēi (微) is the character used to characterize the ‘small needles’ in line 1.5 of Língshū 1; the use of these wēi (微) (subtle or small) needles is one of the key themes of Língshū, and the importance of ēi (微) is reinforced in the opening few lines of Língshū 1, because the crucial dynamic (jī (機)), upon which a superior practitioner focuses, is also wēi (微). So, we are taught in the opening passage of Língshū (aka ‘The Acupuncture Classic’) to use wēi (微) needles, and focus on the crucial dynamic (jī (機)), which is also wēi (微). Should it be any wonder that déqì (得) is also wēi (微), rather than the gross procedures, such as lifting and thrusting or twirling, commonly taught today?

« Back to Glossary Index