Jing - Essance

Jing is another concept in TCM that is difficult to comprehend.  The Chinese translation of Jing is essence.  This is the substance that nourishes growth and development.  When Jing is strong, the growth and development of a child is normal and they enjoy healthy brain function and a strong immune system.  In adults, fully functioning Jing leads to fertility, strong immunity, and longevity.  Problems in Jing lead to birth defects, and mental retardation in children and infertility, low immunity, and premature aging in adults.


Jing is the substance that is passed down from our parents.  At conception, it is said that intermixing of sexual energies of a male and a female is called Pre-Heaven Jing. The Chinese call this congenital Jing and together with original Qi produce our basic constitution. This substance is responsible for the nourishment of the fetus.  Along with the mother’s Jing, Pre-Heaven Jing starts the life and the further development of child.  Once we enter this world, the body starts producing its own Jing through the transformation of food by the Spleen and Stomach.  This is called Post Heaven Jing or just Jing.


The internal viscera that is primarily associated with Jing is the Kidneys.  The Kidneys is the storehouse of Jing.  The Pre-Heaven and Post-Heaven Jing produce kidney Jing. Much like the Pre-Heaven Jing Kidney Jing determines ones constitution.  It is known that the Kidney Jing interacts with the Post-Heaven Jing to nourish it when it is weak.

Functions of Jing

The primary functions of Jing are:


Growth and development of children

All aspects of Reproduction and sexual function in adults

Jing is the basis of Kidney Qi

Jing is the basis of ones constitution

Differences of Jing and Qi

It is important to note that Jing is a different substance than Qi.   Here are some important differences of the two vital substances:


Jing is formed by our parents and Qi is formed by the body after birth

Jing is a fluid like substance and Qi is pure energy

Jing is primarily located in the Kidneys and Qi is absolutely everywhere

Jing is very difficult to revive and Qi is easily revived

Jing transforms very slow over extended lengths of time and Qi transforms and moves very fast