This is based on a story in a Han dynasty text, Xinyu by Liu Xiang (200BCE).
‘Lord Ye was a dragon enthusiast, and he painted or carved the great and mysterious creatures everywhere he could. The walls of his house were painted with them, and the beams and pillars, doors and windows were all carved with them. As a result, word of his love for dragons spread. One day, a real dragon residing in the heavens heard of Duke Ye, and decided to fly down to see him. When the dragon landed, accompanied by thunder and lightning, his huge body filled the palace yard. His head came crashing through the window at the front, while his tail came sweeping through another in the back wall. At the sight of this, Duke Ye was terrified out of his wits and fled in horror.
In light of this, it’s clear that what Duke Ye loved was not dragons, but the likeness of dragons’.
In comparison, the dragon of Neijing is scary and overpowering. Reading, studying and understanding the Neijing is just such an enormous endeavour. The temptation is to run and hide with Lord Yè. In my attempt to harness and ride the dragon of Neijing I have had to immerse myself in the theoretical sands, courtyards and pillars of the Neijing world. In the spirit of this challenge, I have eliminated all theories and practices that were developed after the end of the Han Dynasty (206BCE- 220 AD).
It is easy to love the image of classical acupuncture, but another thing entirely to practise it wholeheartedly.
I have coined the term ‘Han Acumoxa’ to describe the style of acupuncture that I practice. The style has subtle and poetic interpretations of the workings of the physical and metaphysical aspects of the organs and psyche. This old-speak language captures the imagination in ways that makes accessible an organic picture of how the organs and mind interact that is simple to comprehend and at the same time is wonderfully profound. And endlessly versatile. And unfailingly practical.