Classical Acupuncture Is Distinct
It is a modality of the vast system of medical practice called Chinese Classical Medicine (CCM). Other modalities comprising the CCM are: Herbalism (treatment utilizing herbal formulae as a substance ingested by the patient), Tui-Na (Chinese system of massage), Qi-Gong (energetic healing), Dietary Therapy and Meditation. Meditation is considered the highest form of healing as it is done by the patient and has the most optimal effect on the whole person. The next level of mastery of the Medicine is Dietary Therapy, according to most ancient Chinese Medical Classic - Nei Jing. Acupuncture is next in line. Classical Acupuncture is different from commonly practiced acupuncture in a sense that, it is a holistic medical system that encompasses a complete understanding of a brilliant, specific and detailed theoretical system of optimum health, development of illness, and it treats patients with an incredibly wide array of conditions. Classical Acupuncture is based on the tenets laid out in the Classical Medical texts of the Han Dynasty (206 BCE - 220 CE), the height of the practice’s development. This Classical methodology was refined during the Enlightenment of the Northern Song Dynasty (960 – 1279 CE) and it continues to be enhanced by the interpretation of the texts by master practitioners who follow this approach. One of the current masters is the internationally renowned Dr. Jeffrey C. Yuen.
Classical Acupuncture is not to be confused with Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), as Classical Acupuncture utilizes 62 meridians (energy pathways) while TCM uses 12 meridians (and extends a gesture toward 8 others). Divergent, Luo and Sinew (see below) meridians are omitted from TCM practice entirely. As the modern and not necessarily best version of the medicine, TCM omits the ways diagnosis devised in CCM, so the accuracy in this modern version is far from desired. That fact alone makes it unreliable and restricted to management of symptoms (very much alike Western medicine). Classical Acupuncture treatments are comparatively labor intensive and time consuming. Particular attention is paid to the manner of insertion and manipulation of each needle (which differ markedly for each type of meridian), and to the resulting intricate changes to the flow of Qi in the meridians. It is this special attention to detail along with diagnoses not limited to pattern simplifications, and the correct choice of meridian, that can elicit remarkable and profound changes in the health of Classical Acupuncture patients.
The 62 Classical Acupuncture Meridians
The Meridians in Classical Acupuncture can be divided into meridians of life and those of pathology. 12 Primary Meridians represent the life of the individual or physiology of the patient. They are the conduits utilized by Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), including Ren and Du of 8 Extraordinary Meridians. Classical Acupuncture works most with channels of pathology: Sinews, Luos, Divergents and 8 Extraordinary Meridians. These meridians are also called Complementary or Collateral because they support Primary Meridians in the functions of life. They serve as a storage of resources or provide latency when the body is unable to deal with the condition in the most optimal way, provide the capacity for homeostasis, or equilibrium, that helps us function.
Issues Addressed: acute and semi-acute musculoskeletal disorders and complaints, such as pulled muscles, broken bones, new and old burns and much moreThe 12 Sinew Meridians are the outermost layer of the meridians and are the areas on the skin, which cover a person from head to toe. They also involve a top layer of musculature, ligaments and tendons. The Chinese Medical energetics attribute everything that involves Wei Qi (or Protective Qi) the most superficial layer of the energy on the body, to the Sinew Meridians. Wei Qi preserves us from external pathogenic factors, such as cold, heat, wind, dryness and damp. In Westerner’s terms it can be looked at as Immunity. The Sinew meridians comprise a membrane of a sort that allows us to communicate with the world. We either absorb or repel what comes from outside and at the same time communicate our energy out.
Issues Addressed: from mood conditions all the way to psychiatric issues, as well as chronic degenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis and othersThe 16 Luo Meridians are conduits of blood and created by the body in form of varicosities, broken blood vessels, or the nodules in certain conditions. They are created by the body as needed and provide the storage for unprocessed emotional issues experienced in this lifetime. These meridians treatment used for emotional, psychological, blood and musculoskeletal disorders. Sinew treatment are very effective for trauma treatment.
Issues Addressed: wide array of disordersThe 12 Primary Meridians are the 12 meridians of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and are used to treat a wide array of disorders.
Issues Addressed: chronic musculoskeletal conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome, gynecological conditions, gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases, sensory organ and skin diseases, one sided issues and insomnia to mention a fewThe 12 Divergent Meridians also created during the lifetime as a necessity for latency, or to help the body eradicate the condition by consolidating resources in most optimal way, using different types of bodily substances such as Jing (Essence, or Genetic material), Blood, Thin and Thick Fluids (saliva, tears; hormonal fluids), Qi (biological energy) and Yang (source energy).
Issues Addressed: constitutional issues, problems acquired at birth, early childhood illnesses and injuries and moreThe 8 Extraordinary Meridians are the meridians developed from the time in utero. They continue development after the person is born and further in life, up to decline. They carry our genetic material, as they have access to our Jing/Essence. A wide array of conditions can be addressed utilizing the 8 Extra.
Issues Addressed: evoked for uro-genital and reproductive health and more2 Bisecting abdominal meridians (Bao Mai and Da Bao) are evoked for urogenital and reproductive health and more.
Who Practices Classical Acupuncture?
Classical Acupuncture, which adheres to the Han Dynasty texts is practiced:
- In parts of Asia not influenced by Communism (Classical Acupuncture is no longer practiced in China, although some movement toward Classics has been spotted in the last 10 years),
- In the United States by a select few practitioners with training in non-Communist Asia, or in the West by Chinese Classical practitioners who escaped China before the Cultural revolution era,
- By qualified practitioners undertaking extensive independent study with a Classical master, and by graduates of the Swedish Institute School of Acupuncture and Oriental Studies in New York City (closed in 2011). The Swedish Institute Acupuncture Program graduates and many of the independent students have studied with the world's foremost transmitter of Classical Chinese Medicine, the renowned Dr. Jeffrey C. Yuen, Taoist doctor and priest; 88th generation of his Taoist lineage: Yu Ching Huang Lao Pai, (Jade Purity School, Yellow Emperor/Lao Tzu sect), and the 26th generation of Chuan Chen Lung Men Pai (Complete Reality School, Dragon Gate Sect).