“It is not we who abandon life, but life that leaves us when we do not follow the Way.”*
The ancient texts of Chinese medicine don’t just out with “put the needle here” or “use Moxa there.” First there are hundreds of characters describing Right Living. Before we place a needle, or light a match, we are to examine the lifestyle. Does the patient rest as much as they work? Do they eat a diet balanced among the five flavors? Do they poison the body with exposure to environmental toxins, stagnant emotions, or other substances like alcohol? If all of these conditions are optimized and the patient still does not attain health, then and only then are we supposed to intervene with more invasive treatments, like acupuncture, moxibustion, and herbal medicine.
Of course, this isn’t the way the medicine is commonly practiced today. If my patient were Michael Phelps, I couldn’t just tell him to swim less and stay away from the cold to address his shoulder pain! He came to the treatment, paid me, to be able to swim more, not to be told to swim less.
So in modern practice, we see the lifestyle block and we often do our best to look past it and to treat what the patient is asking for.
This pandemic has separated us from our patients, though. Gone are the days of being able to just put a needle here, some moxa there, and free up the shoulder!
So what is an acupuncturist to do?
We’re back to the question of Right Living.
It is the primary tool we have. It is what we have to offer a deathly sick society.
To sit and listen, reflecting back to the patient the brilliance that they have within them, and to remind them that it is there, shining, all the time.
To remind them they have the power to heal, and to help them access this power through right activity, diet, and acupressure.
Now is our society’s time of great need. Chinese medicine is here for you. Acupuncturists are armed to combat these interesting times with ancient wisdom, an open heart, and compassionate listening. Our needles are not our only tools.
“Effective treatment comes from ‘knowing the times’ and observing the practical indications that result. One must conform to the changing requirements of the hours of the day, the days of the fortnightly period, the seasons and the years and in the actual course of treatment, the changes from one moment to the next. A good doctor needs the eye and the hand of an artist. Never go against the current of the river that comes from Heaven, passes, and never returns.”*
What is Three Treasures Wellness LLC doing during the pandemic?
This is why I am offering electronic services during the pandemic. There are three ways I can support you while practicing social distancing, and you can benefit my business, too.
1) Existing patients can schedule telemedicine appointments through my usual scheduling software
Through this medium I am offering personalized coaching on lifestyle and diet as well as acupressure prescriptions and daily exercises.
The rate is $65 per half-hour session.
2) Attend my daily qigong sessions from 11-11:30 AM EST on Zoom (Meeting ID: 618-381-564) or Instagram Live (@threetreasureswellness)
These sessions are free, and you can offer a one-time donation as you are willing and able at www.paypal.me/gganel
3) Become a Patron at www.patreon.com/threetreasureswellness to provide ongoing monthly pledges in exchange for recorded qigong sessions. All of the daily sessions are available for $5 per month. For $10 per month you get that plus bonus content, and for $25 per month all that plus voting power on the content you want to see on Patreon.
*From Chapter 1 of the Su Wen, from the Huang Di Nei Jing classic of Chinese medicine, as translated by Claude Larre SJ in The Way of Heaven