resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
April, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 04
Working Toward Good Health: Energy Systems and Practices
By Marie-Christine Lochot, LMT
For thousands of years our ancestors have developed systems explaining how subtle energies are organized, how they function and how to work with them for good health. What is subtle energy? It is an energy that cannot be measured.This is our life force. The Chinese call it Qi, the Japanese Ki, the Hindu Prana. Energy has power and intelligence; it connects all things in all dimensions. Its movement nourishes and sustains life. When energy stagnates, it promotes diseases, emotional imbalances and various ailments.
Modern science is starting to bring proof that those subtle energies do exist, confirming the intuition of our ancestors. The physicist Albert Einstein with his famous equation E=mc2 introduced the concept that matter and energy are interchangeable as they are two forms of the same thing. If matter and energy are different forms of the same thing then we can say that ultimately everything is energy. "Concerning matter, we have been all wrong. What we have called matter is energy, whose vibration has been so lowered as to be perceptible to the senses. There is no matter." Albert Einstein
There is a lot of literature regarding human energy systems. Opinions vary about how many systems there are. Three main systems though are mentioned by the wide majority of texts: the Meridians, the Chakras and the Aura. So, for the purpose of clarity and simplicity, we will focus on them.
The meridians are energy pathways which run throughout the body, invisible to most eyes, connecting to each other and to every structure of the body – atom, cell, organ, bone, tendon, skin. There are twelve major meridians that run on each side of the body, on the chest, back, arms or legs. Ten meridians correspond to an internal organ: stomach, spleen, heart, small intestine, bladder, kidney, liver, gall bladder, lung and large intestine. The last two, Triple Warmer and Pericardium are somewhat different. Triple Warmer distributes Qi to various body parts. Pericardium works closely with the Heart Meridian and helps protect the heart.
The meridians carry energy, blood and information. It is the meridians that send signals for body functions, the regulation of emotions and the maintenance of homeostasis. Energy in the meridians is accessed through acupuncture points. All meridians are grouped in pair of yin and yang partners. Each pair is associated with a specific elemental force. The meridian system is one of the major foundations of Traditional Chinese Medicine and its healing practices, acupuncture, acupressure, Tuina and Qigong. Good health is attained by ensuring that Qi is flowing freely through the meridians and that organs work in harmony.
According to most researchers, the chakra system started in India some 4000 thousand years ago. The Sanskrit translation of the word chakra is wheel of light. They are usually shown as vortices of energy coming out from the front and back of the body. Many traditions across the world use chakra systems: Hindu, Tibetan, Kundalini, Tantric, Chinese, Maya, Inca, Cherokee and Sufi to name a few. The differences between systems are usually number and locations of the chakras. Most systems, including the modern western derivative system, acknowledge seven major ones, placed at the same locations and with the same color coupled with them. The seven chakras are associated with a nerve plexus, an area of the body and an endocrine system. They are located in ascending order from the pubic bone up to the head:
Donna Eden, energy healer, reports seeing different colors in chakras for different people. The chakras are like power stations which at the same time transmit information into the universe and are attuned to larger energies from the universe. The chakras are also affiliated with the various aspects of being human: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of life. Energy practices that work with chakras for better health "clear them" by using hands, magnets, crystals, sounds and other means. They include Reiki, Healing Touch, Pranic healing, Brennan Healing Science and Energy Medicine.
The Aura is a field of light that surrounds not only people and animals but also plants and objects. It acts as a protective atmosphere around one's body but also connects the physical, emotional and spiritual being to the outer world. The aura is magnetic in nature, but also has some electro-magnetic component to it. As with chakras many traditions have known the aura, and science has been studying it since the 1800s. Many cultures and authors describe the auric field as having seven layers, with the first layer close to the body and the seventh the furthest away. Colors are associated with each layer, but depending on aura readers there are variations. The auric layers are:
The aura changes size, shape, color and density depending on one's health, state of emotions and activity. The seven bands of the aura attach to the seven chakras. When the aura filters out or attracts energy, it does so through the chakras.
Clearing the aura is good for our physical health but also supports emotional and spiritual identity. A variety of energy practices offer techniques to do so. Even if Meridians, Chakras and Aura are separate energy systems, they interact with each other in a dance as subtle as energy itself. Energy vibrations are received and filtered by the aura, then fed into the chakras. The chakras in turn distribute that energy/information into the meridian system which passes it along to all the elements of our bodies from organs to cells. That transmission of energy and information goes both ways. Chakras collect information from the meridians and send it outward through the aura transmitting the imprint of our being to the outer world.
As massage therapists and bodyworkers, energy is part of our work whether it is ours or the client's or the entwinement of those two. Being aware of it is a key component to a deeper understanding of what we do.
Marie-Christine Lochot is a licensed massage therapist, energy bodyworker and educator. Owner of Massage Montclair in New Jersey, she has been a member of the AMTA since 1994 and is nationally certified by NCBTMB. With specialties in Swedish massage, massage for people affected by cancer and energy healing, Marie-Christine coaches and teaches energy healing to laypeople, massage professionals and in the corporate environment. With a diverse background in management and accounting, Marie-Christine also teaches small business and private practice organization. She can be reached at www.massagemontclair.com.
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