Daoists, Doctors and Deviants in Early Medieval China

By CCHH bloggers, on 5 July 2013

Author: Michael Stanley-Baker 徐源

Medicine and Religion were not discrete categories in early medieval China, as many religious sects practised a broad range of therapeutic skills in addition to funerary ritual, salvational rites and cultivation regimes designed to produce Transcendents (xianren 仙人), divinised humans with paranormal powers.  This video clip by Centre associate Michael Stanley-Baker was originally produced for the History of Medicine in Motion workshop hosted jointly by UCL and the Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine. It describes a range of early Chinese therapeutic practices, and the central role of Qi 氣 as a unifying concept across these various traditions, and it contrasts some core practices used by Doctors and Daoists that can be found in early sources.