Meridians are main channel in the body through which energy flows. The meridians in the body are divided into 12 standard meridians with each one having a different quality and affecting different functions and parts of the body. Six of the meridians have a yin quality and six of the meridians have a yang quality.
The yang meridians have a more positive and energetic quality and connect to the heavens. The yin meridians are a more negative and grounding quality and connect with earth qualities. When the meridians are functioning in harmony the yin and yang meridians work together and balance each other out creating great health.
The 6 yang meridians are Lung, Heart, Pericardium, Triple Warmer, Small Intestine, and Large Intestine. They are all yang in nature and the main qualities of yang meridians are energy, drive and life force. The yang meridians help a person have energy and the motivation to achieve their goals. When yang meridians get imbalanced and too strong a person can become overly hyper, aggressive and restless. When yang meridians become too weak, a person can become weak, fearful and have no drive or motivation.
The 6 yin meridians are Spleen, Kidney, Liver, Gallbladder, Bladder and Stomach. They are all yin in nature and the main qualities of yin are grounding and nourishing. The yin meridians help keep a person connected to the earth and family. When these become imbalanced, a person can get weak, obsessed with delusional thought, and in extreme cases, mentally ill. Yin meridians also take in and process nourishment for the body. Their job is to take food from the earth and absorb the energy for the body. When the yin qualities for nourishment become imbalanced a person can have many problems with their digestive systems and their ability to process food. They can also have trouble with excessive imbalances and process excessive food and become overweight.
When the body is in balance, all of the meridians work in harmony and function together in unison, but when one meridian becomes out of balance, it affects the next meridian and puts it out of balance. The way the meridians affect each other can be very complex.
In healing arts such as acupuncture, the practitioner has spent years studying the meridians and how they affect each other. They will examine and question patients and read various signs in the physical appearance of the patient as well as the problems the patient describes. With these signs, the acupuncturist can start to tell which meridians and energy qualities are out of balance. After the patient is diagnosed, the acupuncturist will start a treatment that works on the various meridians that are either blocked or have excessive energy.
When one meridian is blocked it can make the next meridian excessive, which in turn will create an imbalance in the next. It is a challenge for the acupuncturist or other types of meridian workers to diagnoses and create a treatment plan that will balance this complex pattern of the meridians.
Most acupuncturists and meridian workers believe that all sicknesses and illness can be found as imbalances in the meridians, and if these imbalances can be corrected, the illness that manifest as a reflection of them will be cured.