Acupuncture, first recorded over 3,000 years ago, is a system of medicine that uses the insertion of very fine, sterile, single-use needles at specific points on the body to activate the body’s own healing energy. This energy, known as “qi” (pronounced “chee”), flows along pathways, or meridians, through the whole body. It is through a disruption of qi flow that physical or emotional conditions arise.
How It Works
Healing may be practiced as a means of dispelling illness, an approach common to Western medicine. Or it may be practiced as a means of fostering health, or cultivating virtue, an approach common to Eastern medicine that goes back 2,000 years to the Chinese Daoists. The Eastern traditions hold as their central focus the client’s essential wholeness. Because there is a direct relationship between the nature of a person’s illness and the nature of that person’s wellness, in the Eastern traditions, therapeutic actions are chosen specifically to resonate simultaneously with both the client’s highest potential, and with his/her current manifestation of distress. It is through the cultivation of virtue that illness is dispelled and health is restored.
Health that has been restored due to the cultivation of virtue is not the same as health that has been restored simply due to the dispelling of illness. The physical manifestations of health may appear to be the same, but on the level of the spirit, the difference is incalculable. When we focus solely on dispelling illness in order to restore health, a priceless opportunity for the spirit is lost. When our healing strategy has as its aim the evocation of the client’s own original nature as its catalyst for the transformation of body, mind and spirit, the results are profound. The client experiences healing as a transformation that occurs from within.
The Five Elements
Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water are the primal patterns of both Nature and humankind. They carry within them our destiny: the realization of our full potential.
Daoist Five Element Theory poses that we walk through life with one of the Five Elements as our primary imprint. This energetic perspective gives us not only all the tools we need, but also shows where we may struggle in our lives. By supporting and strengthening our source element and the other elements within, we are able to move through the world with greater ease and wellbeing.
Classical Five Element Theory is based on the understanding that many common ailments are the result of some interruption in the natural functioning of the body, mind or spirit. The aim of Five Element Energetic Healing is to isolate and remove the cause of the interruption and to support the body, mind and spirit in re-establishing the natural rhythms of health. This is done by energetically working through the pathways of “qi,” or vital life force, typically used in acupuncture.
Each one of us has a particular relationship with one of the Five Elements, which is our “Constitutional Element.” This gives our life a certain emphasis, making some of us more serious, some more light-hearted, and others more determined. Your Constitutional Element takes the brunt of the stress you are suffering and reveals its unease through physical and emotional signs of imbalance.
In the world of 5 Element Acupuncture, the Sheng Cycle presents an illustration of life as a never-ending cycle of Birth-Growth-Harvest-Death-Regeneration. This is the cycle of the seasons. Wood is spring, when seeds sprout. Fire is summer, when the plants mature and flower. Earth is best illustrated by late summer, when the plants bear fruit. Metal is autumn, when plants die back and return to the soil. Water is winter, when the seeds of last year are gathering the potential for growth when spring comes. Then we start again with the seeds sprouting.