By Stefan Stenudd
Stefan Stenudd
About me
I'm a Swedish author and aikido instructor. In addition to fiction, I've written several books about life force concepts and East Asian traditions. I'm also a historian of ideas, researching ancient thought and mythology. My personal website:

Life Energy
The life energy exists in many traditions, such as qi (chi) in China, prana in India, pneuma in Ancient Greece, spiritus in Latin, and vitalism in philosophy. Here they are all explained.

Life Energy Fundamentals

Life Energy Beliefs A - Z


Life Energy Encyclopedia


Books by Stefan Stenudd:

Cosmos of the Ancients. Book by Stefan Stenudd.

The Greek philosophers and what they thought about cosmology, myth, and the gods. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

Sunday Brunch with the World Maker. Novel by Stefan Stenudd.

Fiction. A brunch conversation slips into the mysterious, soon to burst beyond the realm of possibility. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

Other Websites:

Qi energy

The ancient Chinese life energy qi (chi) explained and how to exercise it. Click the image to visit.

Creation Myths

Creation stories from around the world, and the ancient cosmology they reveal. Click the image to visit.

The circulatory system.

Bodily Fluids

Life Energy Fundamentals

In traditional medicine, as far back as it can be traced, the bodily fluids have been given the most attention. Of primary conceren was the blood, since the loss of much of it would lead to death. Also, its distinct color must have made an impression on Homo rudis, as well as on each generation of mankind ever since.

       Bloodletting (see the image of a medieval illumination) was the primary treatment of just about every illness in the Western medical tradition, all the way to the 19th century. And the doctors paid great attention to the hue of its color, its thickness, how fast it coagulated, and so on. Modern medicine, too, pays great attention to the blood, testing it to trace a vast number of maladies. It is indeed of massive importance in living bodies.

       Traditional medicine also examined the other bodily fluids. Hippocrates (460-377 BC, see the image), the father of Western medicine, counted four of them: blood, phlegm, yellow bile, and black bile. He claimed that they had to be in balance, or the body would suffer some illness.

       In other traditions, additional fluids have been given significance. For example, the tears were proof of human superiority over the beasts in the Christian tradition, since man seemed to be the only animal capable of weeping. Menstrual blood was regarded with awe, if not outright fear and condemnation, in many cultures - at least by their male population. Semen, on the other hand, has often been regarded as a substance of almost sacred might - again mostly by the males. Urine has been observed and utilized in traditional medicine and many household cures. And so on.

       The importance given all those bodily fluids is probably linked to their motion. Life is movement, and Homo rudis could observe that the fluids moved constantly, so they had to be particularly enriched with life force, although not necessarily identical to it. They were carriers of it, in intricate patterns of streams inside every living body.

       So, Homo rudis would easily come to the conclusion that the life force entered the body through the air, and then moved around in the body, carried by the bodily fluids. A dynamic system of movement, just as a force of life must behave.


  1. Introduction

  2. Homo rudis

  3. Prime mover

  4. Air

  5. Bodily fluids

  6. Survival

  7. The dead

  8. Spirits

  9. Hell

  10. Change

  11. Agricultural order

  12. A demanding spirit

  13. Magic

  14. The Scientific Revolution

  15. Mechanical man

  16. Subversive spirits

  17. Alien forces

  18. Future speculations

Life Energy Books

I have written two books on the subject of life energy:

Life Energy Encyclopedia. Book by Stefan Stenudd.
Life Energy Encyclopedia

Qi, prana, spirit, ruach, pneuma, and many other life forces around the world explained and compared. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

QI - increase your life energy. Book by Stefan Stenudd.
Qi - Increase your life energy

The life energy qi (also chi or ki) explained, with several very easy exercises to awaken, increase, and use it. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.