||For five thousand years, The Chinese have developed a philosophy of respecting and preserving life. “How to keep in a good heath” has always been a popular study subject among scholars. Throughout Chinese history, a huge amount of writings and researches about regimens were published. Especially during the Ming Dynasty, because of strong economy growth, the burgeoning middle class began to crave for knowledge of regimes while pursuing mundane pressure. As a result, a number of masterpieces were released during that time.
Among the classics of regimens, Gao Lian’s research publication, “Zun Sheng Bajian”, is the most prominent one. In this book, Gao Lian not only provided theoretical arguments, but also introduced practical examples of keeping fit. He compiled his studies based on various perspectives such as time, space, diet, medicine, and exercise. However, aside from being influential, “Zun Sheng Bajian” consists of complicated structures of content, which prevent modern study from understanding the core of Gao Lian’s theories. Therefore, this article will concentrate on the essence of the book, “the Timing Approach of Regimens”, and hope to set a paradigm for further studies of “Zun Sheng Bajian”.
The first chapter (preface) explains the motivation and goal of this research, along with analysis and conclusion of relevant materials. The second chapter (background of the author) focuses on Gao lian’s biography and the then contemporary development of regimens-study. The third chapter (the theories of “Zun Sheng Bajian”) goes through the “eight ways” of regimens proposed by Gao lian and concludes that the eight ways are vertically inter-related. The fourth chapter (the practice of regimens) analyzes, compares, and categorizes the eight ways, and highlights the concept of “the Timing Approach of Regimens”. The fifth chapter (other relevant issues) supplements minor issues that are not mentioned in the previous chapters. Finally, the sixth chapter (conclusion) sums up Gao Lian’s viewpoints of regimens, and reconstruct a contemporary outlook of “Zun Sheng Bajian”.