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Oriental medicine was not developed in a laboratory. It does not advance through double-blind controlled studies, nor does it respond well to petri dish experimentation. Our medicine did not come from the statistical regression of randomized cohorts, but from the observation and treatment of individuals in their particular environment. It grows out of an embodied sense of understanding how life moves, unfolds, develops and declines. Medicine comes from continuous, thoughtful practice of what ...
 
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As acupuncturists, we practice our medicine as both a science and an art. Science in the sense of organizing the learned or experiential structure of the lens through which we view imbalances. Art in the sense of recognizing that each individual is a unique, multidimensional, and dynamic entity who embodies both revelation and mystery. Our job is t…
 
Like everything else, power is a two-sided coin. It can be coercive and oppressive, but it can also be empowering and nurturing. And according to ancient Chinese texts, true authority is based on ethical inspiration rather than coercion. As physicians, we are in a position of authority—not by claiming the power, but by earning it from competence in…
 
Moxa doesn't just stimulate Qi; it replenishes the vital life force. This Chinese medicine treatment brings nourishment in the form of pure yang that potentially rejuvenates the immune system and restores dysfunctional internal environments. These functions raise the question: can moxa be an effective treatment for Long COVID, which appears to feed…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Gregory Done, along with the other 250+ episodes when visit the website and sign up for a monthly or annual me…
 
The most powerful lessons come not from a school curriculum, but from life. Our world is full of both problems and opportunities. There is what we struggle against, and what we stand for. And the unfolding dance of yin/yang reminds us that everything has aspects of its opposite. Problems contain opportunity. Injustices in the world catalyze our val…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Kath Berry, along with the other 250+ episodes when visit the website and sign up for a monthly or annual memb…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Gary Klepper, along with the other 250+ episodes when visit out the website and sign up for a monthly or annua…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Nishanga Bliss, along with the other 250+ episodes when visit out the website and sign up for a monthly or ann…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with David Allen, along with the other 250+ episodes when visit out the website and sign up for a monthly or annual…
 
When traveling do you turn on the GPS and follow the instructions, look at a map to orient yourself, or do you have a sense of the terrain and the capacity to navigate by landmarks, waterways and a sense of where north lies? In your clinical work, are you orienting to a theory or idea, or toward something in the patient that is telling you in the m…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Rachel Pagones and Beth Sommers on, along with the other 250+ episodes then visit the website and sign up for …
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Jessica Baer, along with the other 250+ episodes then visit the website and sign up for a monthly or annual me…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Mark Parzynski, along with the other 250+ episodes then visit the website and sign up for a monthly or annual …
 
Building a successful practice is rewarding, but it's rarely a smooth ride. It's a path that takes us beyond our healing work and into the depths of business practices—from marketing to managing finances. Amid the multitude of details that go into running a small practice, it's easy to feel overwhelmed— which is why clarity of purpose is so helpful…
 
This is one of the podcast member episodes, and I wanted to share a few minutes of it, as it captures the spirit and essence of the conversation. Enjoy this bit of essential qi. And if you’d like to listen to the complete conversation with Jessica Baer, along with the other 250+ episodes then visit the website and sign up for a monthly or annual me…
 
Whether you're a young or seasoned practitioner, opening your own Chinese medicine practice is an exciting , daunting and worthwhile challenge. There's a lot that goes into being a practitioner—beyond the medicine part of it. You have to learn how to blend your medical expertise with business know-how. And as our society and life circumstances evol…
 
Western medicine and East Asian medicine have often been seen as two completely different ways of approaching health and well being. Can they be blended together for the benefit of our patients? It has taken time for the Western world to familiarize itself with the modalities of Chinese Medicine. Similarly, maneuvering through large organizations l…
 
Leaves on a plant curl and turn yellow when the soil is not right. The health of a cat is reflected in the texture of its fur and clearity in the eyes. Likewise with people we can discern states of wellness or illness by attending to those parts of the body that are the first to show the signs of change. And so over the centuries we’ve learned to t…
 
Heartbreak is unavoidable. It’s not a flaw in character or make up humans, it’s a feature. It’s what allows us to grow beyond the bounds and limits of family, friend group, peers and whatever group identity we find that gives a sense of belonging and security. Heart break expands our boundaries, the question is does it break you open or break you c…
 
It’s easy to have beliefs about people we don’t know. Especially if they tick the boxes of our biases, prejudice, ignorance and the opinions of our friends. When you think about successful stock market investors you’re probably not thinking about people with compassion, curiosity, spiritually and a sense of fair play. But for some of the top level …
 
I’m reminded of the stillness of cats. How they can sit both still and yet completely and serenely attentive. So too with resonance, there is the yin aspect of stillness with the yang expression of vibrating with the influence of the environment. And in the middle, ren, person, the human heart. In this discussion with Diane Fabian-Smith we look int…
 
How we are with ourselves affects how we are with patients. Our own difficulties in life can assist us in helping others, but it requires that we are able to come to a sense of neutrality with those traumas of the past. In this conversation with Seanna Sifflet we discuss using our own feelings, the healing potentials in empathy and forgiveness, and…
 
“What is my purpose? Why am I here?” These are questions that we all grapple with at one time or another in our personal and professional lives. But finding the right answers is often elusive—mainly because our focus tends to be narrow and we fail to ask the right questions. In this discussion, we welcome back Sam MacLean to delve into the topic of…
 
Language creates walls or openings. We can attempt to coax our patients into our view of the world, or softly and with respect enter into theirs. There are clever ways to use language as a trick. But in the therapeutic setting it is far better to use language with respect, and that respect comes from a deep rooting in our presence and embodiment. I…
 
Grief and fear are a potent combination of influences, and when you add the pressure cooker effect of Covid-19 and all that entails it can be powerfully disruptive to our collective wellbeing. Seanna Sifflet and Heidi Lovie explore how our medicine and our presence can help our patients and our communities to navigate through the choppy waters of o…
 
When we think of the essential aspects of the human being, we think Jing, Qi and Shen. When you think about the health, wellbeing and flourishing of your business; what are the essentials you consider? If you did not consider marketing, you might want to think again. And give MB Huwe a listen here, because marketing is an essential aspect of your p…
 
Shaoyang issues have a kind of cyclical nature. The problems come and go with a wobbly periodicity. Not unlike the wheel of a bicycle that is slightly out of true. The flaring of heat and uprising of qi can be seen through this lens. In this case presentation with Eran Even we get a glimpse of this shaoyang dynamic and see how a clinical presentati…
 
Knowing a little medical Chinese can be very helpful in learning and practicing the medicine. This review of the Chinese Medical Characters app will give you a good overview of the app, along with some encouragement for the process of helping yourself by learning the basic characters that will help you to better understand and think about our medic…
 
It’s easy to think of our practices as “acupuncture.” But the truth is our practices are first and foremost— a business. An infrastructure that allows us to do the healing work we do. The business is as separate from the practice as the mind is from the body. Which is to say; not at all. If you’re taking the pulse of your business, the overhead is …
 
Through the boundaries of time, language and culture East Asian medicine has found its way into the West. But there is a cultural component that we often don’t consider. And that can make a difference in the effectiveness of our clinical work. Furthermore, our modern culture disportionately values curing over healing, and sometimes there is no cure…
 
Any seasoned practitioner leans on the patient practitioner relationship. There is something in the interaction that cannot be separated from the response they have to our treatment. In this conversation with Vitaly Napadow we discuss the Art of Medicine and how fMRI imaging from the brains of patients and practitioners with an established clinical…
 
The ancient Chinese were not the only people to observe nature and develop medicine in the service of relieving suffering and promoting health. But they were the only culture that wrote it down and managed through the centuries to preserve significant portions of it. In this conversation with Edward Chiu we discuss writing case reports, which is a …
 
There is a saying in Chinese, 以人為本, Understanding a person is basis of knowing how to treat them. Our work requires we both understand our medicine, and understand how it applies to that individual who sits before us in our clinic. In this conversation with Bryan McMahon we explore the importance of congruence in health and illness, take a look at …
 
There is a moment in between sensing and allowing what is felt to enter the world of cognition and concept. It’s a liminal space of being and feeling and if you can linger there for a moment there is information that is beyond the ken of words. In this discussion with Nigel Dawes we explore how palpation allows us an opportunity to imbibe that sens…
 
Forty years is a long time to practice medicine and gives plenty of opportunity to follow your interests while helping patients. Our medicine includes various kinds of hands on bodywork, and in this conversation we explore the use of micro current. While electricity is often applied to needles in our work, Malvin Finkelstein has found a way of usin…
 
Barry Danielian is one of the most in demand trumpeters and arrangers in NYC, having recorded on over 400 CD’s. Barry’s music is used throughout the television and media industry. His touring and recording credits include diverse artists such as: Bruce Springsteen, Barbra Streisand, Jay-Z, Tony Bennett, Sting, Tower of Power, Queen Latifah, Eddie P…
 
Research when done well is an inquiry that can shift the foundation of your cognitive model. And that’s exactly what it is for. In this conversation with Brenda Le we both explore how TCM is seen in our Western Chinese medicine world, and how doing this research opened her up to aspects of medicine and practice that she did not previously see. List…
 
Jing, Qi and Shen— the three treasures. Like so many of these pithy quotes about Chinese medicine there is a lot here if you have taken the time to investigate it and see how it fits within your experience of practicing medicine. In this conversation with Yair Maimon we touch on the three treasures as they relate to treating cancer with acupuncture…
 
We often consider the Five Phases when doing acupuncture, and the Six Conformations when treating our patients with herbal medicine. In this conversation we consider the interplay of “wu yun, liu qi” the five movements and six climatic qi from the perspective of diagnosis and understanding not just what problem a patient has, but also its progressi…
 
It is surprising where life can take us. We follow a hunch or a nudge and somehow gain some momentum that in time generates wind for our sails. Not many westerners in the 1970’s started along the road of Chinese medicine. In this long ranging conversation with Jake Fratkin we discuss his perspectives over time and his current thoughts on medicine. …
 
The prolific science fiction write Issac Asimov wrote “The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not “Eureka!” (I found it!) but “That’s funny …” The wonderful thing about research is that it invites delicious questions and opens avenues of inquiry that lead us beyond the borders of our maps of the world.…
 
Listening is not a skill that I expected to develop. I thought I’d get good with palpation or pulse reading. After all, the masters are said to get what they need with the pause and a few questions. That’s what I was aiming for, however it did not work out that way for me. I’ve found over the years that there is a way of listening to a patient that…
 
You’ve probably seen patients who are on thyroid medication and the numbers are “fine” according the their conventional doctor, but they just don’t feel right. We know from our experience as practitioners that often our patients are deeply frustrated because they’ve been through thousands of dollars of testing and yet they are told “there is nothin…
 
Some of the difficulties faced by many of us in this time of pandemic are the disorientation, anxiety and fear that arise from uncertainty. But if you look more closely, you’ll see that there never is in this life the guarantee of certainty. It can feel that way because of habituation, but when you strip away the daily habits and sense of continuit…
 
The Saam tradition traces its roots back four hundred years to a monk who as part of his meditative practice received some insight into medicine that allowed him see and work simultaneously with the five phases and six conformations. But monks are not doctors, even if they can relief a lot of suffering with a few needles. And so the methods of Saam…
 
The practice of medicine is not completely about what we do, it’s also informed by how we are. How our presence, perception and allowing ourselves to abide in that space between knowing, sensing and being can invite a quiet, non-rational part of ourselves into the clinical encounter. Michael McMahon, like many of us, did not initially set out to be…
 
Daoism and Daoist thought is something that many acupuncturists have been exposed to. It might have been part of what launched our interest in studying medicine. And perhaps you’ve had the experience of reading books like the Dao De Jing and come away more with a sense of confusion than clarity. It’s challenging for us as modern westerners to grasp…
 
The classics are helpful not just because they contain pointers to how medicine works. They are helpful because of the discussions they have generated amongst practitioners over the twin distances of time and space. They are a kind of thread that connects us with the doctors of the past who have gone to this well for the wisdom within. Listen in to…
 
We can approach the business and financial aspects of our practices a distasteful task that we’d prefer to delegate to someone else. Or we can take it as the opportunity it is to work through our shadow material around the issues of money, power, authority and integrity. In this conversation we explore how wealth allows us to interact more fully wi…
 
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