Moxibustion treats and prevents disfunction by applying heat to points or certain locations of the body. The material is a species of Artemisia Vulgaris, this is an herb in the Chrysanthemum family. Most commonly used as a stick, also a cone or rolled threads. Moxa has been used for centuries along with acupuncture and herbal prescriptions. The Materia Medica describes the use of moxa as follows:
The moxa leaf is bitter and acrid, producing warmth when used in small amount and strong heat when used in large amount. It is of pure yang nature having the ability to restore the primary yang channels from collapse. It can open the 12 regular meridians, traveling through the three yin meridians to regulate qi and blood, expel cold and dampness, warm the uterus, stop bleeding, warm the spleen and stomach to remove stagnation and enhance digestion, regulate menstruation and ease the fetus. When burned, it penetrates all the meridians, eliminating hundreds of diseases.”
Moxa functions to warm meridians and expel cold by activating circulation. The use of moxa can also help to lead the qi in one direction or another; thereby, helping to induce the smooth flow of qi and blood. Strengthening the yang qi is an essential concept in Chinese Medicine as this would imply that a yin excess would be leading the body into a cold, deficient and exhausted state. It’s all about bringing balance to the body. The use of moxa is also a preventative approach that can be used to balance yin and yang. Chapter 73 of Miraculous Pivot says, “Deficiency of both yin and yang should be treated by moxibustion.” There are many techniques and approaches in the use of moxa and it is an adjunct to the Chinese Medical approach that may be intertwined in a treatment or prescribed when deemed beneficial.