Health is commonly experienced and understood in a variety of ways, including the absence of disease, but also more positively, as functional vitality or as a resource. Scholarly debates about the definition have evolved around a binary opposition between health as a natural phenomenon and health as a socially constructed category. However, when examining how concepts of health function in society, instead of attempting to rigorously define health, it may be more useful to explore how health is “talked about” in different contexts. The papers collected in this special issue do so with regard to different periods and cultures in East Asia and as such contribute to recent efforts in the health and medical humanities to elucidate the multiple meanings of health.
Vernacular languages do not necessarily have the general terms of disease or disorders. They also do not have the words corresponding to “health” which is defined by the modern medical knowledge. It means the condition that peoples or animals do not have disease or disorders in mind and body. On the other hand, peoples achieve ‘health’ through their own ways and have some rules to manage the condition of body and mind. This paper introduces how the Taiwan’s indigenous people recognized the sick and practiced eating habits to keep health or cure the disease through the ethnography written in Japanese colonial periods.
Publications became popular during the Edo period. Knowledge of health spread through the publication of books on health. “Publication of longevity” which is the first publication of the Edo period was published many times through the Edo period. I will pursue what “penetration for longevity” changed notation, change its form, change the title, permeating among the common people.
Ishimpo is a medical book edited by Tamba, Yasurori, in Heian Period of Japan.
It is different in construction from Chinese traditional medical books, which first describe diseases due to natural phenomena, second ones related to the viscera, and finally ones seen at various sites of the body.
In contrast, what becomes problematic in the construction of Ishimpo is that acupuncture and moxibustion are placed in the second volume, that stone drugs, a life nurturing skill of Taoism, is not included in the life nurturing volumes, and how to interpret a disease of “fatigue of deficiency type”. As we investigated the answers of the problems, we could understand that Ishimpo emphasized acupuncture and moxibustion and that the interpretation of “fatigue” was limited and also show the essential points of life nurturing ideas in Ishimpo.
In conclusion, Ishimpo considers diet therapy the most important in life nurturing. Therefore, in Ishimpo’s life nurturing ideas, recreating “five viscera” leads to reviving not only the body but also “spirit and vitality” and “Qi”, which is thought to be the very curing. Also, Ishimpo may suggest that they explored more realistic and Japanese-style life nurturing.
Health care is about leading a healthy live style and avoiding getting sick.
Eisai, the Japanese monk from medieval times, claimed in Kissa Yojoki (“Notes on Tea and Health Care”) that “Tea is the best medicine for longevity.”
Longevity depends on both physical and psychological care. Not only does tea provide many good nutrients for the body, but it also offers social interaction between people. In addition, it enhances one’s creativity and appreciation of art. In this way, tea has existed with mankind for over 2000 years, providing a good physical as well as psychological influence. One could even say that the meaning of tea and health care comes from selecting suitable teas to enjoy in different states of health and with different foods.
The purpose of this study is to explore and analyze the occupation activities applied in the historic Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) from commentary books and to compare them with modern occupational therapy. As the result, 80 cases were found from classic references authored by doctors in successive generations. These cases were firstly classified by history era, activity, area and disease, with considering both the theories of Traditional Chinese Medicine and occupational therapy. These cases are also classified by mental health, physical disabilities, developmental disabilities, gerontology and healthy person. 22 kinds of activities including gardening, music, reading and calligraphy were used. In addition, they can also be classified to self-care, productivity, leisure and others. These cases can be interpreted by both the Traditional Chinese Medicine and the modern occupational therapy. TCM considers that humans live amidst the universe and our vital activities are inevitably influenced by the natural laws of material movement. All activities of the human body have formed close patterns with nature. In occupational therapy, treatment is selected according to individual values, interests, habit, and the role.