xū (虛)

xū (虛) and shí (實) are used rather differently early in Língshū 1 and throughout Nèijīng (內經) than we generally see in the modern clinical doctrine of Chinese medicine. Wiseman renders xū (虛) as “vacuous,” and Unschuld uses “empty” in much of his translation of Sùwèn. Xū (虛) and shí (實) do not mean ‘deficient’ and ‘excess,’ as they are frequently translated in modern Chinese medical contexts; see notes on bùzú (不足) and yǒuyú (有餘).

« Back to Glossary Index