Being aware of our emotions, how they move , how they affect our organs and thus our health can help us to move with them in order to create a loving care relationship to ourself.



Traditional Chinese Medicine considers that all illnesses and physical suffering of internal origin arise from the imbalance of the emotions.

Taoism, whose philosophy is the basis of Chinese energetics, identifies five primary emotions by linking them to the main internal organs:

joy to the Heart,

anger to the Liver,

fear to the Kidney,

sadness to the Lung,

anxious thought to the Spleen.


This classification is not arbitrary, emotions manifest in the body in a physiological manner as they are necessary for life and the balance of the organs themselves, but they can manifest in a pathological manner creating imbalances:

the Heart opens in a joyful mood, but too much joy makes the Heart throb and upsets the solar plexus;

anger can be a safety valve to safeguard the integrity of the Liver, but anger in excess damages it;

fear stimulates us to act prudently by conserving energy in the Kidneys, but if disproportionate and unreasonable it causes a loss of fluids and essential energy;

sadness promotes internalisation and perceptive sensitivity useful to the Lung, but excess or lack of crying blocks the chest and clogs the airways;

reflection is necessary for the Spleen to shape thoughts, but excess worry causes stomach upset.

Each emotion has its function in securing and fostering life, it is the excessive or chronically restrained emotions that give rise to pathologies.

Emotional activity is seen as a normal physiological response to stimuli from the external environment.

Within normal limits, emotions do not cause any illness or weakness in the body.

However, when emotions become so powerful that they become uncontrollable, so much so that they overwhelm or possess the person, then they can cause serious injury to internal organs and open the door to illness.

It is not the intensity as much as the prolonged duration or extreme emotion that causes damage.

While Western doctors tend to emphasise the psychological aspects of psychosomatic disorders, the pathological damage to the internal organs is very real and is of primary importance for healing.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), there are seven emotions:


Joy refers to a state of agitation or overexcitement.
When one is too joyful, the spirit is dispersed and can no longer be preserved, states the Lingshu (The Vital Axis).

However, in TCM, joy refers to a state of agitation or overexcitement (euphoria), rather than the more passive concept of deep contentment. The organ most affected is the heart.
Overstimulation can lead to heart-fire problems, associated with symptoms such as feelings of agitation, insomnia and palpitations.


Anger may lead to elevated blood pressure. Anger, as described by TCM, covers the whole range of related emotions, including resentment, irritability and frustration.
A stagnation of blood makes the person prone to anger.

Anger will then be able to affect the liver, resulting in stagnation of its Qi.

This can lead to liver energy rising to the head, resulting in headaches, dizziness and other symptoms. In the long run, it can lead to high blood pressure and can cause stomach and spleen problems.

It is commonly observed that rubicund, ‘sanguine’ people with flushed faces are more prone than others to sudden fits of rage at the slightest provocation.


Anxiety can block Qi by quickly manifesting in shallow breathing.

When one feels anxious, Qi becomes blocked and does not move.
Anxiety injures the lungs, which control Qi through breathing.

The most common symptoms of extreme anxiety are breath retention, shallow and irregular breathing. The shortness of breath experienced during periods of anxiety is common to all. Anxiety also injures the organ coupled to the lungs, the large intestine. For example, hyper-anxious people are prone to ulcerative colitis.


Too much intellectual stimulation can cause pensiveness.
In TCM, pensiveness or concentration is considered to be the result of overthinking or excessive mental and intellectual stimulation.

Any activity that involves too much mental effort can be at risk of causing disharmony.
The organ most directly at risk is the spleen. This can lead to a deficit of spleen qi, in turn causing worry and subsequent fatigue, lethargy, and inability to concentrate.


Pain that remains unresolved is capable of creating disharmony in the lungs.

The lungs are most directly affected by this emotion.
A normal and healthy expression of pain can be expressed in the form of hiccups, which originate deep in the lungs – deep breathing and expulsion of air with hiccups.
However, pain that remains unresolved and becomes chronic can create disharmony in the lungs, weakening its qi. This in turn can interfere with the lung’s function of circulating qi in the body.

Fear that cannot be expressed risks leading to disharmony in the kidneys. Fear is a normal and adaptive human emotion. But when it becomes chronic and the cause cannot be identified and resolved, then it is likely to lead to disharmony.
The organs most at risk are the kidneys. In cases of extreme fear, the kidney’s ability to retain qi may be impaired, leading to involuntary urination. This can be a particular problem for children.

Fright is another emotion not specifically related to one organ.
It is distinguished from fear by its sudden and unexpected nature.
Fright mainly affects the heart, especially in the early stages, but if it persists for some time, it becomes fear and moves to the kidneys.So if you have digestive problems, respiratory problems, etc. you will probably recognise yourself in the emotion associated with them.


Emotions are part of human life and are perfectly natural.

However, when identification with the stories of the mind and emotional states happens, then these which are objects that pass into Consciousness become a subject that grows exponentially creating imbalances in our lives and in the people around us.

When it becomes clear again who is the subject (Consciousness) and the object (emotions, thoughts) then everything regains its natural balance.

If you want to delve deeper into the subject of energy these can help you:

Reiki treatments, Learning to move energy within yourself (Reiki Certifications), Paths of awareness, Personalised meditations.