Continuous learning is the hallmark of any progressive professional regardless of their field. Even in the discipline of Traditional Chinese Medicine, which has existed for more than three millennia, this is essential. I would say it is especially true for Classical Chinese Medicine practitioners. There are layers upon layers of expertise that can only be gained from deeper study. I have recently returned from my fifth trip to China, where I spent two weeks of intensive learning with a master of acupuncture and moxabustion with more than 40 years of experience and his top student who acted as both translator and teacher.
Coming out of school with a doctorate in TCM really just gives you a solid framework and foundation from to go deeper into the medicine. One can gain greater insights and clinical techniques over time with more experience and exposure, which can dramatically improve efficacy in the clinic once back at home.
In China they have special areas in hospitals referred to as “The Old Doctors” section which is where more complicated cases are sent. Older doctors are best equipped to resolve challenging cases due to their greater years of experience.
In my two weeks of intensive study and hands-on practice, we covered specialized needling techniques, the use of moxibustion to treat various challenging diseases, scalp acupuncture, and Jing Feng herbal therapy – a classical way of diagnosing and prescribing herbal therapies.
I had studied all of the above in various forms previously but learning from a master with such vast experience was invaluable in deepening my understanding and in fine-tuning my own skills in these areas.
The course also included a component for myself as a person and what I bring to my clients. This included some meditation and qi gong. This practice crystallizes the importance of being present, focused and fully engaged within all of our interactions. This is true for any profession where the quality of our attention impacts the quality of our service. As with any continuous learning this is especially true for TCM and even more so for Classical Chinese Medicine.
As this year concludes and a new year begins I will continue to share and write more about specific disorders and the lessons learned from my time in China. Knowledge is meant to be shared. I have benefited from so many teachers and hope to pay it forward.
Please contact the clinic if you are interested in learning more about any of these methods or even just to talk about the wide range of treatment options available.