Thai Sen Lines and Chinese Meridians

Published: May 9, 2020 | Updated: Nov 7, 2020

Thai Acupressure and the Sen Sib Energy Lines
© Picture courtesy William

Although the concepts behind the Thai Sib Sen Energy lines are similar to those of the Pranic channels in Ayurveda and the Qi Meridians in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the Sen Lines should be considered on their own terms.

Of course, the systems mentioned above are based on the theory of the flow of Life Energy (Lom Pran, Prana or Qi) along lines or channels that run through the body. Thus, traditional Asian massages are generally considered energy work and not so much bodywork, because the goal is to promote and balance energy supply in the body.

There are similarities between certain Sen Lines and Thai acupressure points with the TCM Meridians and TCM acupressure points, but one of the most important differences is that the Sen Lines don’t specifically correlate with organ systems as is the case in TCM. Although a particular Sen can be worked on to treat the organs it passes through, a Sen is typically manipulated to work on all body parts it crosses.

Furthermore, not only are there differences in the number of primary energy lines (ten in Thai Massage and twelve or fourteen meridians in TCM depending on how one counts), but an additional dissimilarity is that all Thai Sen Lines start around the navel (umbilicus) and end at the openings or extremities of the body.

By contrast, the Chinese Meridians start and end at various locations in the body, such as from the hands to the head or from the chest to the hands, to name some examples.

Another difference is that the TCM standard meridians are divided into Yin and Yang groups, such as, for instance, Yin and Yang Meridians of the arms and Yin and Yang Meridians of the legs. And although balance, excess and depletion play important roles in Thai Sen therapy also, the Chinese Yin Yang concept in TCM treatments, including in Meridian theory and practice, is all-pervasive and of supreme significance.

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