In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Shen can be translated as “Spirit” or “Mind”, and implies our consciousness, mental functions, mental health, vitality, and our “presence”. Shen energy is an expression of our higher nature as humans, and is considered to be the most valuable of our three treasures (Jing, Qi, and Shen). Compassion, kindness, generosity, acceptance, forgiveness and tolerance are all traits of the Shen residing in the heart.
Shen emerges as wisdom and the ability to unify and transcend opposites. Its radiance empowers our capacity for nonjudgmental awareness, resilience, personal power and profound intelligence.
In TCM, Shen is viewed as residing within the heart, an organ associated with perception and intuition. The presence and amplitude of Shen energy is directly related to the accuracy and dependability of our inner compass, our heart’s innate intelligence and ability to guide us through otherwise stressful times with great wisdom and poise.
When Shen is weak: Your access to heart intelligence is reduced. Your ability to thrive decreases. Stress increases. Susceptibility to addiction increases. Sleep is compromised. Mental clarity decreases. You are more likely to experience disempowering states like depression, hopelessness and victimhood.
When Shen is strong: Your structural integrity is high, and your ability to respond as a natural leader is strengthened. Your inner compass operates much more accurately and consistently. Your ability to comprehend the larger picture of a situation increases. Your ability to remain centered in stressful situations increases, and you feel more connected and less isolated. Mental clarity increases and your capacity for flexibility and adaptability increases. Inner joy increases, and your experiences of, and capacity for, flow states increase. You are more likely to choose nourishing foods.
This one panel with 22 items can calm, balance, and tonify the Shen.