Last Updated: September 1, 2018

Definition - What does Chi mean?

Chi, also spelled qi, is life force energy or vital life of a living being in traditional Chinese philosophy, religion and medicine. The concept is similar to prana in Hinduism and yoga philosophy. Chi means “breath” or “air” and is often translated as “energy flow,” “life force” or “matter energy.”

Just as prana moves through the body via channels called nadis and passes through the chakras, chi is believed to move through meridians and three energy gateways called dan tiens – one each in the pelvic region, the heart center and the third-eye center.

Yogapedia explains Chi

Traditional Chinese medicine believes that to maintain physical and emotional health, chi must flow freely. When chi is blocked or not balanced, the result is physical or emotional disease. Chi is manipulated by a variety of means, including acupuncture, herbal remedies, dietary changes and physical practices such as martial arts, tai chi and qigong. On a spiritual level, chi makes it easier to reach higher states of consciousness.

Some believe there are many different types of chi. For example, the chi that you are born with is called yuan, or ancestral, chi. That which is absorbed from the environment is hou tain chi. There's even heaven and earth chi. In Taoism and Chinese philosophy, chi takes the form of yin and yang, or the feminine and masculine primordial energies.

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To help you bring attention to your doshas and to identify what your predominant dosha is, we created the following quiz.

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