Chinese Medicine Services
Taoist Chinese Medicine is an integrated health care system that is over 5000 yrs. old. This holistic energy medicine originated in the region of China and is now practiced in different countries around the world, including: Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Europe and America. Treatment methods include: acupuncture, acupressure, cupping, moxibustion, qigong tui na massage, Chinese herbal therapy and nutrition. The Chinese Medicine and healing arts we practice and teach at White Crane combine ancient Taoist lineage traditions with contemporary knowledge of Oriental medicine.
Acupuncture is the most familiar modality within this system. Each individual experiences acupuncture on a personal level. What one feels depends on their present state of being and level of sensitivity. Acupuncture points are located in the small depressions or hollows in the skin called points or gates. Through these gates, the practitioner can access the internal streams and rivers of energy that transport Qi, Blood and Fluids. Qi and Blood give sustenance to the interaction and cohesion of mind, body and spirit. Fundamentally, illness manifests when Qi, Blood and Fluids are either blocked, depleted or imbalanced. This creates dysfunction or eventually illness if not addressed. Acupuncture can reorganize the dynamic relationship of Qi, Blood and Fluids by opening, closing or harmonizing the flows within the rivers and streams (channels). More than a thousand known acupoints have been mapped by the Chinese.
In the realm of acupuncture, the most common energetic pathways used are the 12 meridians or regular channels. These meridians connect to the yin and yang organ systems of the body. This system is generally emphasized in Chinese medical schools; however, there are 8 energy channels that are equally valuable, known as the 8 Extraordinary vessels.
I had the good fortune 20 yrs. ago to study this system in school. My instructor, Dan Nevel, studied the prevailing knowledge of the extraordinary vessels and evolved a system that was primarily used originally in a somatic (physical) context and developed a new way to balance non-somatic (psychological) issues. Some examples of this system’s practical application would be helping individuals to manifest their potential in the world; helping someone that is experiencing an emotional situation (good or bad) to feel or express it; or helping someone that is constantly discharging energy to store it, in order to have a sense of cohesion. Our inner world of feeling is constantly challenged in an increasingly complicated world which prevents our neurological system from processing the incoming data that seems to be coming at us at an increasingly faster pace.
Qigong Tui Na Massage
Qigong Tui Na Massage is a special branch of Chinese Medicine that is not as well known as acupuncture or other forms of Chinese therapies in the west. Tui Na works mainly with the pre-natal energies of the right, left and central channels which are formed within the original fertile egg. The meridians are formed later during fetal development. This process of working with the natural energies within the body helps it to adapt to the natural energetic surroundings in which it exists. Qigong tui na helps to reconnect, coordinate and bring the body back to its original balance.
There are many systems of Qigong that have flourished in the Chinese culture. The system practiced and taught at White Crane is a Taoist healing system that dates back thousands of years to ancient China. The nature of this practice naturally develops a level of sensitivity and deeper understanding of the energetic anatomy of the body for both practitioner and patient. Taoist healers in China that have been doing this work for thousands of years have used their natural human capacity to become truly intuitive, aware and sensitive to the depth of human feeling.
This type of bodywork which is quite subtle and sophisticated is derived from the internal Qigong school and should not be confused with traditional tui na bodywork. It includes gentle massage, gentle shaking, vibrating and pulsing of the joints, cavities and tissues. As this process unfolds, the patient learns how to feel and access the blocked areas. The clear intention of the practitioner and patient, quiet breathing and use of dissolving and releasing skills help the patient to reconnect with the natural energetic flow of the body.
Life is full of distractions, stress and behavior patterns that contribute to a poor state of health and premature aging; making it difficult to maintain stability. This is especially true if your energy is compromised with serious illness, physical injury or traumas. Even developing a small amount of our ability to heal ourselves is useful for living a long, healthy and vibrant life.
The use of herbs in China dates back thousands of years and there is an extensive materia medica that has been compiled over the centuries. Herbal therapy is used to supplement and direct the body’s healing energy to improve it physiological functions. Herbs can enhance the efficiency of digestion, metabolism and circulation to balance the energy of the body and create a healthy and harmonious internal environment. Chinese herbs are prepared in many forms including: decoctions (teas), powders, liquid extracts, pills and capsules. For external use: patches, poultices, liniments and lotions are available for traumas & injuries as well as first aid use for infections, bug bites and toxicity from plants, such as poison ivy. Herbs can be used effectively with Eastern or Western therapies. To learn more, see the blog post: “Do You Have An Herb For?”.
In western medicine and nutrition, our bodies and food are understood by their component parts. Science isolates and studies each part to learn how to treat the individual or how to put together a healthy diet. While this information is valuable, it’s not always complete or effective for treating an illness or creating health. In eastern medicine and nutrition each individual is seen as a whole and treated as the unique individual they are. Food is viewed by its energetic influences on the body. For example, inside our bodies exists an environment that the Chinese describe in terms similar to the outside. An individual can be hot or cold, damp or dry, excess or deficient. Food can be warming or cooling, drying or moistening, supplementing or draining.
Practical application of this system includes learning how to stock your pantry, making the best choices when eating out and understanding how to include food grade herbs in cooking to enhance the positive energetic influence in your diet. Classes always include educational material, informational charts & lists and recipes with step by step instruction.