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Throwing stones to the pond

The bond in Traditional Chinese Medicine

Lanzando piedras al estanque

Through the ages, the professionals working in the health field have listened about the communication and understanding difficulties that patients have experienced in therapeutic contexts of whatever nature.
The professional's limited listening of the patient is usually an impediment at the moment of deepening the bond and the treatment’s approach.
What does the listening consist in from a professional point of view when that wonderful kaleidoscope called human being is the main focus of attention?
Through the centuries, both in the East and in the West the ways of clinical observation have become different.
In the West, the approach tends to see the symptom as the main focus and in the East the first moment of attention is focused on the diagnosis which allows a look at the energy origin of the symptoms. (1)
In the Far East, a doctor was, apart from his profession, a philosopher, an astronomer, a pharmacist and a wise man among other abilities.
To get to understand a diagnosis, the Chinese doctors in ancient times not only had the classical theoretical-practical medicine training of that time and a comprehensive exercise of the clinical observation (1), they exercised the bubbling quieting of emotions and thoughts. Thus, they controlled the inner silence. Thus, they started the diagnostic observation.
There were movements such as those of the Taoist schools of the 10th to the 17th Century where the Silence, the Inner Smile, the exercise of the emptiness and calm allowed a condition of receptivity, readiness and openness, thus allowing those practicing and the professionals to line up with the Sky, Earth and Universe itself.
A true work of one's own knowledge and the nature of everything.

They exercised during decades not only in their aptitude for the classical eastern medicine training but also in the development of the inner training that during centuries established a true work of internal alchemy.

In this way, the listening of the other expressed without distortions and the patient was seen as a whole and not only for the reason of his consultation: the symptom.
At present, the same old clinical practice continues to be carried out.
But the 21st Century brings us a different culture and acceleration. A different management of time and space.
Today we live at a great speed: we look without seeing, we hear without listening to, we touch without noticing… And with our “life glass” full of stimuli and noises we get stunned without leaving a free space. We have spaced out from the inner silence.
Within a therapeutic role, this deficiency appears clearly.
The possibility to come back to the sources and go back to certain old concepts and practices would tune up the diapason of the natural cycles. By feeding form and content, the external and the internal in mutual communion.
I remember that many years ago, while I was studying Traditional Chinese Medicine, I read an Italian author called Gianni Rodari.
He was an Italian writer, teacher and educator (1929-1980) who wrote his main theoretical work called “Gramática de la Fantasía” (The Grammar of Fantasy).
The description he makes of a stone thrown to a pond called my attention… By the way, a very oriental image.
A part of the text says:
“The stone thrown to a pond makes concentric waves that expand on a surface and its movement, at varied distances and with different effects, affects the nymph and the rod, the small paper boat and the fisher's canoe (…)
In the same way, word randomly thrown to mind produces superficial and deep waves, causes an endless series of chain reactions, thus implying in its fall sounds and images, analogies and memories, meanings and dreams, in a movement that affects experience and memory, the fantasy and the subconscious, and this gets complicated by the fact that the mind itself does not attend passively to the representation but it takes part continuously (…)”
Like the image of the pond described by Rodari, the health professional throws “the stone” which represents himself, and expands and deepens a defined action in the other… and the water in the pond is no longer the same.
The therapeutic act is like this.
In the present time and in a full emptiness the direction of the thought force field and the professional listening is a transforming action.
In the same way, if the professional's thoughts and emotions are uneasy, they will not allow the listening of the other in his dimension.

Perception and clarity together with qualities of stillness, empathy and synchronization allow to see the reflection in the bed of the pond.


(1) What did the clinical practice of a physician in Traditional Chinese Medicine consisted of?
Once the Clinical Record was done, the Palpation of the Chinese pulses (200 readings of the bilateral radial pulse), the Visual inspection and Tongue Diagnosis (Diagnosis by tongue), the Auscultation and olfaction, the Abdominal palpation, the Syndrome analysis and, finally, the practical action of the Treatment chosen was carried out (Acupuncture, Moxibustion, cupping, Tui Na, among others).


Dr. Cecilia Y. Cáceres
www.acupunturachina.com®