If you look at the previous post about Taoism and Embryology, it is possible that without some knowledge of Chinese Medicine, you might scratch your head and say, “Huh?”
If this is the case, then continue reading! Hopefully this information will help in deciphering that post.
The Dan Tien, or Hara, is the point below the navel. Except it is not an external point – it is the core of the body, it is known as the center of gravity in the body, and it is the primordial point. It is literally the first part of the body to start forming in utero. When the sperm cell is invited into the egg cell during conception, this location on the egg cell is what becomes the Dan Tien – it is a major, very important organizing principle in our health and development!
From the Dan Tien form the Eight Extraordinary meridians. These start forming in the womb, in utero.
The Dan Tien is known as the Gateway to Source or the Gateway to Life. It is the source of life. It is the primary generator / reservoir of Chi. The Dan Tien feeds the Eight Extraordinary meridians – which are more like large lakes of Chi, they are reservoirs in their own right as well. And the Eight Extraordinary meridians feed and nourish and balance the Chi flow in the 12 Principle Meridians (most people who know alternative medicine have heard of these – the Liver, Lung, Heart, Kidney meridians, etc).
Here is one analogy (my own, may not be entirely accurate): The Dan Tien is the ocean of Chi. The Eight Extraordinary meridians are large rivers of Chi. The 12 Principle meridians are smaller rivers and streams, ebbing and flowing throughout the day and throughout the seasons.