Classical Acupuncture

Chinese Medicine is a vast collection of ideas and approaches – different treatment styles which reflected different schools of thought, that changed and developed with the change in dynasties over the period of 5000 years. The changes in medical approaches occurred in conjunction with philosophical, historical, cultural and environmental events.

These various approaches, the insights of doctors and teachers who have become legendary, are not systematically taught in modern American or European schools of Chinese medicine, nor, in fact, in China today.

Classical Acupuncture is Acupuncture preserved as it was at the height of it’s development in the centuries spanning the Han Dynasty (206 BCE-220 AD) through to the Song Dynasty (960-1279). It is based on the Classical medical texts of the Han Dynasty and enhanced by interpretations and approaches by the great masters who followed. These ancient texts, describing the progression of infectious, as well as other diseases, are as relevant today as they were thousands of years ago.

After Communism was introduced in 1949, sweeping reforms took place, and Classical medicine which had been the established medicine, was banned, because it was viewed as outdated. Little room was left for China’s ancient and spiritually rich practices of the past. All aspects of Chinese culture, ranging from medicine to martial arts, were standardized in accordance with the new ideology. At this time, there was a shortage of doctors in the rural areas, and the scale of the population necessitated the concurrent treatment of large numbers of people. Therefore, in a deliberate effort to simplify the practice of medicine, whole tracts of medical theory were disregarded. Energy pathways were simplified and pathological conditions were grouped into patterns, or groups of symptoms for standardized diagnosis and treatment. Some of the most inspirational healing and spiritually enlightening works and treatises by the classical masters were eliminated. This new version of Chinese medicine, which could have been renamed “New Chinese Medicine”, was named Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM.

It is this diluted version of Acupuncture which is now taught in China and the rest of the world.

There are many fine practitioners of TCM in China and the USA, and elsewhere. All approaches to medicine are valued for what they are able to offer toward the elimination of suffering and disease.

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“A few rare people are endowed with an extraordinary gift: they are natural healers – somehow, interacting with them is profoundly therapeutic.

Adele Strauss has this gift. She is the most therapeutic person I have ever encountered.
She has augmented her natural gift with deep training, achieving the highest skill levels in acupuncture, shiatsu massage and Chinese medicine.
Her ministrations are inexplicably energising. I don’t know how or why they work, but they do. A client for decades, I consider her treatments essential. They are a perfect complement to the Western health care I receive.

Tom Hagan
Boston MA
April 2009