Written by Dr. KC Hill, AP, Dipl OM
The ludicrous sensibility and practicality of describing theories from Traditional Chinese Medicine, TCM, through the lens of Quantum Biology, makes an exciting starting point at which to begin an odyssey through tradition, science, history, and the future of medicine in general.
Qi Flow and Acupuncture Channels According to Ancient Chinese Medicine
One of the Classic Chinese texts, the Spiritual Pivot, discusses the meaning of Jing Lou, Channels and Collaterals, the network that supports the flow of Qi throughout an organism. It is essential to look at the literal translation: Jing is a "water channel" and Lou is "net." The translation "net" can be extrapolated to network to truly describe all of the interconnections the "water channels" make throughout the body, a water channel network. Throughout the text, the channels also are referenced as circuits, conduits, and capacitors; these are pathways or components that are usually associated with electricity (Deadman et al., 2001).
The description of Qi flowing like water continues with the discussion on the Five Shu Points. These are points where Qi changes polarity, are considered to be powerful points for treatment and are located distal to the elbows and knees of all four of the extremities. The words used to describe the flow of Qi are emanating, gliding, pouring, flowing, and entering inwards to a sea at these points (Deadman et al., 2001).
Thus far, Qi's description of movement is like water through a water channel network, while at the same time, it is traveling through circuits, conduits, and gathering in capacitors. These illustrations give rise to many questions for students. Is Qi water or energy? It is defined as "the energy of the body, of the meridians, of food, and of the universe," by Yin Yang House (Staff, 2020). If Qi is water, then where does the energy come from? If Qi is energy, why is it flowing like water? The explanation to these questions traditionally is that the great ancient Chinese doctors used metaphors and flowery, poetic imagery in their teachings. Scientific exploration of these questions and similar ones is warranted. "What if the writings are not beautiful idiom and analogy?" "What if the description of Qi is exactly as the great masters stated energy and water simultaneously?" The evaluation of questions will follow.
Classical Physics, or Biomedical Explanation of Qi
Dr. Daniel Keown takes on the task of utilizing biology, physiology, anatomy, and embryology in his book, "The Spark in the Machine," to try and answer some of the difficult questions between Eastern philosophy and Western ideology. He directly tackles the question of, "What is Qi?" several times. One of the most eloquent is the presentation of Dr. Jwing-Ming Yang's explanation of Qi,
“food + air = energy
Glucose + oxygen = water + carbon dioxide + energy
C6H12O6 + 6O2 = 6H2O +6CO2 + Energy” (Keown, 2014, p. 25).
This is the equation for cellular respiration that produces adenosine triphosphate (ATP) in the mitochondria of each cell in the human body. The fact that water is a byproduct of energy generation scientifically demonstrates an interdependent relationship between water and energy, or Qi (Keown, 2014; Rafferty et al., 2020).
Classical Physics, or Biomedical Explanation of Acupuncture Channels
Collagen is extremely abundant throughout the human body. Dr. Keown concentrates on the presence of collagen in the facia, dubs it a connective fabric, and compares similarities with the triple burner (san jiao) channel. Collagen is an extremely strong, piezoelectric, semiconducting crystalline structure that consisting of 60% water. It is virtually impenetrable within the body, only being foiled by metastatic cancer. It safely contains and protects the viscera, providing a biological divide between cavities, covering the muscles, tendons, and bones. Dr. Keown likens this to "an interconnected, living electrical web" that has an incredible reminiscence to ancient depictions of water channel networks in Acupuncture (Keown, 2014).
Fascia plays a significant role in western surgical procedures. It actually directs surgeons on where to cut; in an organ transplant, the facia identifies where the organ begins and ends. This demonstrates the vital role of fascia or rather collagen in separating and containing organs. In TCM, each organ has its own Qi, and in Western medicine, each organ has its own metabolism or energy. Utilizing deductive reasoning, one can assess that the collagen may have a large role in the quantity, quality, and directionality of the flow of energy, or Qi, into or out of the organ (Keown, 2014, pp. 36-37).
Dr. Keown states the location of acupuncture channels is in the space between the fascia and a channel by definition can be empty, a thought-provoking concept put forward in chapter eleven of his book. This combination, along with the description of a "Water Channel" network from the great masters of ancient Chinese medicine, and Dr. Montagnier's work in "Water Memory" introduced the idea that perhaps modern physics can scientifically explain, predict, detect, and even manipulate energy, Qi. Conceivably people have finally evolved enough to start to comprehend the science behind the teaching of the great Masters of Ancient Chinese medicine.
Quantum Physics approach to Qi and Acupuncture Channels
Dr. Montagnier is a French virologist and 2008 Nobel Prize Laureate in Physiology for his part in the discovery of human immunodeficiency virus, AIDS. He and his team are continuing the work of Dr. Jacques Benveniste on the memory of water, tapping into the world of supramolecular chemistry, and collecting empirical proof that on the nanoscale water behaves in extraordinary and wondrous ways. Specifically, water forms a Quantum Coherent, QC, domain.
Dr. Marc Henry, a professor of Chemistry, Material Science, and Quantum Physics at the University of Strasbourg and a member of Dr. Montagnier's team, explains that water is a dipole molecule, containing one Oxygen and two Hydrogen atoms, and has the ability to align with other water molecules. He utilizes the analogy that water molecules are like children holding hands in a line that can form a circle. When the water molecules align in a circle, this creates an enclosed space that matter cannot enter. Only an electromagnetic, EM, wave can enter the enclosed space, and this is called a QC (Bono et al., 2012; Manil & Lichtenstein, 2014). In a joint paper with Italian scientists, Dr. Henry goes into depth on the QC and how it forms in water. Photons, smallest quanta of light, have particle-wave duality. It is the photon's EM wave that is "trapped" within the coherent domain, and the supramolecular water structure, QC, oscillates in phase with the photon (Bono et al., 2012).
Dr. Montagnier and his team have captured EM signals from serially diluted, with distilled water and succussed DNA, deoxyribonucleic acid, samples. He believes that this work is paramount to the discovery of a cure to AIDS. He and his team are tirelessly working to capture the EM signal that one day may have medicinal applications to cure this disease. He also postulates that this same scientific discovery will extrapolate to treat Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, autism, and even cancer (Manil & Lichtenstein, 2014; Montagnier et al., 2015).
Dr. Montagnier has successfully created a reproducible experiment protocol that demonstrates the serial dilution and agitation of DNA with purified water yields coherent domains. He was able to measure the EM signal from the serially diluted agitated solution, record the EM wave, and send it through the internet to another laboratory 1000 kilometers away in Italy. The receiving laboratory exposed a sample of purified water to the EM wave signal for one hour and then added an inert solution of nucleotides, the building blocks for DNA, and polymerase, a catalytic enzyme that forms DNA or RNA. The EM signal interfaced with the polymerase to reconstruct the original DNA sample with only a 2% error. This process is called "Transduction" by Dr. Montagnier and QC explains it (Manil & Lichtenstein, 2014; Montagnier et al., 2015).
Professor Tamar Yinnon is an independent researcher with affiliation to the University of Rochester for the last 30 years, specializes in theoretical Chemistry and Condensed Matter Physics. He published a literature review of research on Serially Diluted, Vigorously Shaken Aqueous Solutions, SDVSAS, to evaluate the findings and postulate the importance of this research for water reclamation, toxicology, and medicine. SDVSAS is the same type of solution that Dr. Montagnier is researching. Dr. Yinnon made note of inconsistencies between research facilities that may skew results, such as a variation in the source of the distilled water can change the electrical impedance of SDVSAS. He reports that there are coherent aqueous domains that cluster into supra-domains or QCs, otherwise known as liquid crystalline structures. He states that the most significant findings, in his opinion, are that "the bioactivity, physicochemical and structural properties of SDVSAS are interrelated" and "The bioactivity is solute specific," meaning that the EM wave is unique to the biological material that is diluted and succussed within the aqueous solution (Yinnon, 2017).
In reviewing the material presented thus far, a photon in a supramolecular crystalline structure or QC of water held the instructions to rebuild the original DNA sample. Restating this with the translation of Jing Lou from the Ancient Chinese Medicine Texts, Qi in a water channel network, reconstructed the original DNA sample. This generates many questions that require more research.
Quantum Physics, Collagen, and Acupuncture Channels
Dr. Mae-Wan Ho Ph.D., Co-founder and Director of the Institute of Science in Society, was awarded the Prigogine Medal in 2014 for her work in the physics of organisms and sustainable systems, explores the physics behind the interplay of EM waves, water structures, and collagen crystalline structures at the nanoscale. This work began the moment she observed an astonishing phenomenon through a polarizing light microscope that she could only describe as a "dancing rainbow worm." The liquid crystalline structure or QC of water is the explanation given for this phenomenon. The brightest areas of the worm are the most active, and therefore the most coherent. This ties in with the work of Dr. Marc Henry, who explained that a QC traps Photons. Dr. Ho presents evidence that acupuncture channels are liquid crystalline structures, QC, aligned with collagen fibers that envelop and generate the Direct Current, DC, EM field surrounding all living things (Ho, 2012). Thus demonstrating accord with the assertations of Dr. Keown, not only on the role of collagen in acupuncture channels, but also on the importance of the DC current within the body.
The prologue of "The Spark in the Machine," reviews the work of Dr. R.O. Becker, an American Orthopedic Surgeon, who extensively researched the ability of salamanders to regenerate. Dr. Becker observed that the DC current, measured in micro-amperes, of the salamander would reverse polarity when the tail was amputated, and cause limb regeneration to commence. It is significant that the DC current reversed its polarity as this caused blood cells to "de-differential" or return to their stem cell state, a change that happens in the nucleus of the blood cell. It is important to note that while salamander blood cells contain a nucleus, human blood cells do not. The stem cell is a result of a metamorphosis caused by RNA, Ribonucleic Acid, in the nucleus re-coding the DNA back to its original predevelopment state. The stem cells then rebuild the tail the same way as when the salamander originally developed in embryology (Keown, 2014).
It is important to note that the flow of Qi is unidirectional, according to the ancient Chinese Masters, making it a DC current. When Qi flows in the wrong direction, it is "Rebellious" or pathological (Deadman et al., 2001). However, in the case of the salamander, the reverse in electrical polarity ignited a healing event. This raises many questions and necessitates more research.
Prof. Fritz-Albert Popp is known as the Father of Biophotonics and the Founder of the International Institute of Biophysics. He describes bioluminescence as being the result of a biological phenomenon caused by a fully QC domain that creates an EM field. This paper was published in 1988 and included because it is arguably the first published postulation that biophotonics is possible due to QC. It is a demonstration that what is known today started with Professor Popp and his keen understanding of biology and physics. His research points toward the generation of coherent biophotonic fields by exciplexes of DNA and demonstrated in the aforementioned work of Dr. Montagnier. He also discusses that DNA exciplexes at their lowest energy state are not in equilibrium, thus creating opportunities for coherent vibrionic interactions to occur naturally. This all plays together with what he calls "deterministic chaos," where identification of regions of order and chaos happens (Popp et al., 1988).
All living organisms emit biophotons; this includes humans, trees, and bacteria. Some bioluminescent is observable with the naked eye from the majestic blue iridescence of the dinoflagellate plankton that people enjoy in the waters of Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge to the light green glow of the Lampyridae beetle or firefly dancing around in the evening hours. Most of the bioluminescent world is invisible to the naked human eye due to either intensity or range. Intensity refers to insufficient emissions of biophotons for detectability. Range refers to light is ultraviolet, which is outside of human perception. Dr. Changlin Zhang, a professor of biophysics at Zhejiang University, China, details that some of the biophoton emissions from a human are in the ultra-low range of photon emissions at 320 to 650 photons per second per square inch and comparable to the number of photons observed from one candle 10 miles away (Zhang & Heaney, 2016). The biophotons appear the strongest around the head and the fingernail and toenail beds, the same place that Qi is changing polarity, or the direction of flow. Approximately 1% of the human population has a slightly larger range of visible light and can see some of the ultraviolet range. There is a theory that the religious aroura depictions come from the observations of people with this ability (Keown, 2014; Zhang & Heaney, 2016).
Quantum Physics is the Next Frontier for Natural Science, Including All Medicines
Professor Jim Al-Khalili, a British theoretical physicist and Chair of the Public Engagement in Science at the University of Surrey, has received many awards, including the Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication in 2016. The Professor has endeavored to share his knowledge of theoretical physics with people of all levels of education. He shares a real-life example of quantum physics occurring in the animal world when he describes the way that a European robin's eye utilizes Quantum Entanglement to interface with the EM field of the earth to navigate seasonally. He calls out biologists, medical doctors, and physiologists to put down their rudimentary models of molecules made out of balls and sticks from classical physics, and start to explore "The Dawn of Quantum Biology." It has been 100 years since the physics community moved forward into the modern era; it is time for life sciences to follow suit. It is time to promote discovery and understand the implications of quantum entanglement, coherent domain, and quantum field theory in the natural sciences (Al-Khalili, 2013). As he calls out to Western science to usher in a Dawn, TCM practitioners also need to join in on the discovery, intrigue, and possible new understandings of ancient texts.
The description of Qi, Channels, and the movement of Qi through a living body from the ancient texts of Chinese medicine contain flowery imagery that has previously been interpreted as an analogy is being challenged by the evolution of the understanding of Quantum Biology. The advancement of science and the discovery of Quantum Physics gives a new perspective on the ancient accounts of Chinese medicine. The water channels in which Qi flows is a fairly accurate description of a biophoton in a Quantum Coherence of water. The lines in which the channels flow match up with the crystalline structured collagen lines in the facia that is present throughout the body. The study of Quantum Biology will most likely reveal deep secrets that are only possible in the Quantum Realm, which may already be described in the ancient texts of Chinese Medicine, and mistaken for flowery poetic language.
Al-Khalili, J. (2013). Jim Al-Khalili - Quantum Life: How Physics Can Revolutionise Biology The Royal Institution. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwgQVZju1ZM
Bono, I., Del Guidice, E., Gamverale, L., & Henry, M. (2012, July 9, 2012). Emergence of the Coherent Structure of Liquid Water. Water, 4(3), 510-532. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.3390/w4030510
Deadman, P., Al-Khafaji, M., & Baker, K. (2001). A Manual of Acupuncture (M. Al-Khafaji, Trans.) [Text Book]. Journal of Chinese Medicine Publications. http://ww.jcm.co.uk
Ho, M.-W. (2012, 2013-07-03). Super-Conducting Liquid Crystalline Water Aligned with Collagen Fibres in the Fascia as Acupuncture Meridians of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Forum on Immunopathological Diseases and Therapeutics, 3(3-4), 221-236. https://doi.org/10.1615/ForumImmunDisTher.2013007869
Keown, D. (2014). The Spark in the Machine. Singing Dragon.
Manil, C., & Lichtenstein, L. (2014). Water Memory (2014 Documentary about Nobel Prize laureate Luc Montagnier) D. Leconte; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8VyUsVOic0&list=WL&index=12&t=0s
Montagnier, L., Del Giudice, E., Aïssa, J., Lavallee, C., Motschwiller, S., Capolupo, A., Polcari, A., Romano, P., Tedeschi, A., & Vitiello, G. (2015, April 2015). Transduction of DNA information through water and electromagnetic waves. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 34, 106-112. https://doi.org/10.3109/15368378.2015.1036072
Popp, F. A., Li, K. H., Mei, W. P., Galle, M., & Neurohr, R. (1988, 1988/07/01). Physical aspects of biophotons. Experientia, 44(7), 576-585. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01953305
Rafferty, J. P., Rogers, K., & Gaur, A. (2020, March 13, 2020). Cellular respiration. Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. Retrieved August 29, 2020 from
Staff, Y. Y. H. (2020). What is Qi? Qi in TCM Acupuncture Theory - TCM Theory. Yin Yang House Inc. Retrieved August 28, 2020 from https://theory.yinyanghouse.com/theory/chinese/what_is_qi
Yinnon, T. A. (2017, November 24, 2017). Very Dilute Aqueous Solutions - Structural and Electromagnetic Phenomena. Water, 39. https://doi.org/10.14294/WATER.2017.4
Zhang, C., & Heaney, J. (2016). Invisible Rainbow: APhysicist's Introduction to the Science Behind Classical Chinese Medicine. North Atlantic Books.