Hanfa: The Diaphoretic (sweating) Method


By Cheng Guopeng (Scholar, Qing Dynasty)
Translated by Heiner Fruehauf

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English (6 pages)
German (7 pages)

Cheng Guopeng is one of the seminal scholar-physicians of the early Qing dynasty. At the height of his career, he synthesized his personal insights derived from a life-long study of the classics, especially Zhang Zhongjing’s Shanghan lun, and his clinical experience by writing the book Enlightened Insights into the Science of Medicine (Yixue xinwu, 1732).



This thin yet influential work first spelled out the system of the so-called Eight Parameters (bagang) and the Eight Treatment Methods (bafa), which since have become the standard diagnostic parameters of Chinese medicine. His introduction to the “Sweating Method” (Hanfa) is an excellent example for the original depth and attention to detail which ancient master physicians brought to their craft.

Also, we should be aware that disorders of the three yang stages are located within different layers, and therapeutic action should thus follow a certain order. If the condition is located in the Taiyang layer and you disperse the Yangming layer, you are already one step off the mark. If the disease is in Taiyang/Yangming and you relieve Shaoyang, then you practically entice the robber to penetrate deeper into the house. If the disease is in two meridians at the same time, but you only focus on treating one, you are overlooking the other.



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