Introduction Some people who come for acupuncture session for the first time have had the experience of trying various sessionmethods that gave them little or no relief. They wonder whether they will every find a doctor who can help heal their bodies. Having nothing to loose and feeling that at this point they would try anything, they come to our clinic when someone suggests that they try acupuncture.
Other people shrink away from coming to the clinic due to fear that acupuncture will be painful, even though they know from others that it is beneficial. Still other people are indecisive coming to the clinic because their insurance will not cover acupuncture and they do not know how they will be able to cover continuing sessions.
These are all understandable concerns. We have prepared this pamphlet with the purpose of answering such concerns and also with the hope of having our patients gain a truer understanding of the spirit of acupuncture, which we call HARI.
If illness, by definition, cannot be cured merely by the application of session methods, then neither can simply having health insurance fend it off. From the acupuncture or hari point of view, it is only when the compassion and empathy and techniques of a doctor who accurately practices natural medicine, and the natural healing ability of the patient who is afflicted by illness join together that illness takes a turn toward the path of convalescence.
It is our hope that the patients whom fate has brought to this clinic today will, through the experience of receiving session, by all means experience the magnificence of the power of life. For, the possibility of life is boundless. No matter how difficult you were told that your case may be, please, never despair, continue to harbor the flame of hope, and regularly come to receive session.
Characteristic of Our Acupuncture Clinic
When Ki ( or life force) flows freely through the meridians, the body is balanced and healthy, but if the energy becomes blocked, stagnated or weakened, it can result in physical, mental or emotional illnesses. An imbalance in a person's body can result from inappropriate emotional responses such as: excess anger, over-excitement, self-pity, deep grief and fear. Environmental factors such as cold, damp/humidity, wind, dryness, and heat can also cause imbalance so as factors such as wrong diet, too much sex, overwork and too much exercise.
To restore the balance, the acupuncturists use the acupuncture points that will counteract that imbalance. Session centers on supplementing the primary deficiency pattern, and balancing the distribution and circulation of Ki within the meridian system. Therefore, if you have stagnant Ki, he will choose specific points to release it. If it is too weak, he will strengthen it, and so on. The points that the practitioner chooses to use may not necessarily be at the site of the symptoms. In the United States, acupuncture is used frequently for the session of chronic pain conditions such as arthritis, bursitis, headache, athletic injuries, and posttraumatic and post surgical pain. It is also used for treating chronic pain associated with immune function dysfunction such as psoriasis (skin disorders), allergies, and asthma. Acupuncture is also found to be effective for the session of mind-body disorders such as anxiety, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, hypertension, insomnia, PMS, menopausal symptoms, infertility and depression. Some modern application of acupuncture is in the session of disorders such as alcoholism, addiction, smoking, and eating disorders.
In this CULIA KI CLINIC we practice a purely traditional form the East Asian medical arts. Our style of acupuncture (Hari) is based primarily on diagnosis through observation of the pulse. Hari is a refined system of Japanese five phase (Kototama) meridian therapy. It is largely rooted in the practitioner's acute sensitivity to ki (or life force). Harisessions adjust and regulate the balance and flow of ki in and around the meridians (which are pathways through which the life force flows to every nook and cranny of the body) in such a way that the life force can flow uniformly to each of the five viscera and six bowels.
With that purpose, the practitioner determines the object of session (known as the shōor pattern of imbalance) based off of an examination of the overall condition of the patient with particular attention paid to the state of the pulses and abdomen. Session points are selected by giving fundamental consideration to the pattern of imbalance and also by taking into account the symptoms of complaint as well as the current state of the patient's body. Then, by using acupuncture tools and moxibustion the practitioner supplements and tones the correct ki (or healthy life force) and sublimates Evil Ki (or pathogenic ki) up to a state of correct ki, thereby performing session that removes the underling cause of disease.
The Hari techniques are gentle, yet effective on a deep level. We mostly use very fine stainless steel (less than 0.18 mm in diameter) and silver needles. Moreover, for the principle session we use contact or touch technique, which is a noninvasive method. At this time the patient may feel something like a mosquito bite, or will not feel the needle at all.
For moxibustion as well the sensation is very faint since we use tiny cones the size of sesame seeds. The essence of Hari is completely different from the acupuncture that is based on biomedicine, which aims at stimulating the autonomic nervous system. It bears no resemblance to the image of giving stimulationby inserting needles into the skin. That is why so many children come to our clinic for treatment.
Hari fundamentally aims at strengthening the life force, and as such its unique characteristic is that it is applicable to any illness, regardless of whether biomedicine would classify it as being a concern for internal medicine, dermatology, gynecology, or whatever.
Moreover, we provide advice on home therapeutics such as moxibustion, massage, special breathing methods, exercises, and diet based on the diagnosis of the individual and their peculiar needs in relation to health maintenance, chronic illnesses, and long term care.
History of Japanese Acupuncture
The history of Japanese acupuncture stretches back to the kingdoms of Xia, Yin, and Zhou, which prospered from nearly five thousand years ago in ancient China.Already at that time people were dispensing sessions in the form of the so-called 'benevolent art', which included stroking and rubbing those who were suffering from disease.Then, roughly two thousand and some hundred years ago during the Spring and Autumn and Warring States periods (ca 770BC ~ 221BC), which followed the Zhou Dynasty, records of the medical practices up until that time were written down.
The so-called three great classics of acupuncture, the Su Wen (Basic Questions), Ling Shu (Spiritual Pivot), and Nan Jing (Book ofDifficult Issues) were written during the Former Han (206BC ~ 8AD) and Later Han (25 ~ 220) dynasties.With them the fountainhead of acupuncture was established.The theoretical foundation of Hari is derived from these medical classics and the science of ki.
Further, sessions that focused on herbal remedies, which appeared in the Yangzi River basin in southern China, began to flourish from the time of the Six Dynasties (229~ 587).Then, from the time of the Sui (581 ~ 618) and Tang (618 ~ 907) dynasties acupuncture and herbal medicine began to influence each other, and both continued to develop.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine were transmitted along with Buddhism to Japan starting in the Nara period (710 ~ 794).Both flourished greatly during the Heian period (794 ~ 1192).Then, during the Edo period (1603 ~ 1867) a uniquely Japanese form of session, which focused on pulse and abdominal diagnosis, was developed and reached new heights of prosperity.
However, during the Meiji period (1868 ~ 1912) contemporary Western biomedicine became dominant when traditional East Asian culture was pushed into the corner.At that time the Japanese government was in such a hurry to implement a policy of increasing the nation's wealth and military power that it adopted Occidental culture across the board, including medicine.Thereafter practitioners of Chinese/Kampo herbal medicine nearly vanished in the shadows.Acupuncture on the other hand continued to survive, although at a distance from mainstream medicine.
From the Showa Era (1926 ~ 1989) until the present, people have not been satisfied with only the symptomatic treatment of biomedicine, and there has been resurgence in the general awareness of the value of East Asian medicine, which is based on holistic thinking.Further research and development in the field has brought us to the point we are at today.
The Characteristic of Hari and the Differences from Western Medicine Even though medical and therapeutic practitioners in both the East and the West claim to seek to relieve even a little the suffering of the sick, the point of attention in session differs greatly between the two. Acupuncture, or Hari, has been handed down from person to person as a 'benevolent art' and as a form of caring. Through a long history of 3000 to 5000 years the existence of the meridians (or pathways of the life force) and the acupuncture points (or places where ki emerges from and enters the body) along the meridians were discovered, and acupuncture organized as a medical system. For example, it was found that stomachaches were eased by touching a needle to the acupuncture point on the leg that is called Three Li of the Leg. In this way people came to realize that using needles on, or applying moxibustion to acupuncture points could reduce the suffering of the sick. Furthermore, another important discovery was that one became filled with vitality and that the many pathogenic symptoms of a sick person faded away bit by bit as the acupuncture points were used to return balance to a number of meridians that had shifted away from their normal state. Moreover, the focus of this session was on how to transform the sick body of one who is suffering into a healthy body, rather than simply using needles or moxibustion directly on the area that is experiencing discomfort. For that reason the unique examination method (known as the four pillars of examination) and diagnostic method (known as determining the Shō or pattern of imbalance) of this Hari system were developed and firmly established. Therefore, a prominent characteristic of Hari is that it is not a therapeutic system that narrowly focuses on disease, but instead treats the whole body (including one's life in the fundamental sense). That is, it does not try to find and treat only precisely defined diseases, but rather aims at giving strength to the whole body and being.
Western biomedicine turns its attention to disease itself. It searches after the causes of disease in a narrow sense rather than in a whole, and contrives advances in techniques, matching certain medicines to specific pathogenic bacteria or pains, and using surgery for particular tumors. That is why Western biomedicine specialties, such as internal medicine, surgery, gynecology, ophthalmology, otorhinology, clinical psychiatry, and pediatrics, etc., were established as independent fields based on the areas of the body in which certain pathologies tend to manifest. Thus, it is a fact that biomedicine cannot grasp the whole (i.e. life) by looking at the individual parts.
The unique session system of Hari was established such that, rather than being shackled to individual symptoms, it works to strengthen the overall life force of the person and channel it such that people can recover their health by their own natural power. Since session is given from the perspective of strengthening the life force, the intended target of treatment is general, without distinctions such as internal medicine or surgery. Moreover, it can respond to all symptoms regardless of specific disease appellations. To recapitulate, the significant characteristics of Hari are: 1) a focus on strengthening the life force, 2) a diagnostic system that naturally leads to treatment methods, and 3) the encouragement of spiritual awakening. More specifically, the first characteristic is that Hari strengthens the power of life, the power to live through things, by adjusting and harmonizing the ki that flows in and around the meridians inside the body through the application of needles and moxibustion on the surface of the body. The second characteristic is that the pattern of imbalance is determined and the session method of where and how to use needles or moxibustion is comprehended instantly upon examining the pulses and abdomen of any patient, rather like solving an equation. Therefore, there is no waiting until a diagnosis can be made, and never a lack of a treatment technique even though a disease has been identified and named. Finally, the third characteristic is that Hari does not only influence the body, but goes so far as to heal the heart and soul, such that one's innate wisdom can flow forth like the cool and fresh waters of a spring. Lastly, it can be said of Hari that it is a pragmatic session modality whereby one pursues a sense of unification between themselves and others, and to the universe at large, by utilizing the Meridian Therapy system to diagnosing patterns of imbalances and by practicing ki therapy. As a result, one can observe the amelioration of symptoms and the improvement of the pulse--which are two expressions of life. At the same time, this translates into health and happiness achieved through the growth of both the patient's and the practitioner's spirits.
 A unit of measure in ancient China.
Sessions in Our Clinic One day a woman came to the clinic complaining of pain in her arm. The session objective was set immediately upon examining her pulses and abdomen, and session commenced directly. I knew that there were abnormalities in the respiratory system and hormone system due to the peculiar firmness in her pulse. Were she to have gone to a practitioner of Western biomedicine, she most likely would have been sent to a neurologist for the pain in her arm and her stiff shoulders, to an internal medicine specialist for her headache and cold, and also to an ophthalmologist for her weary eyes, and to a gynecologist for her menstrual cramps. In this way one patient is sent to four different departments, receives different examinations and mechanized tests, and is prescribed a fair quantity of medications from each department. This manner of prescribing medications and performing too many tests can adversely affect other organs that were functioning normally. Everyday, patients with a number of different symptoms, such as this woman, visit our clinic. Rather than directly attack all these different symptoms, we concentrate on strengthening the life force of the patient. In this way, if one continues receiving sessions, all their symptoms will disappear, or at least become moderate. In the case of the woman mentioned above, she came for sessions once or twice a week for about three months, the result of which was that she was relieved completely of all her symptoms. She expressed her appreciation, saying, " If I only knew acupuncture was so effective I would have come sooner."
Another patient sent the following letter of thanks after receiving successful sessions.
Dear Mr. Kuwahara:
I trust that my few words of thanks, appreciation and honor will be sufficient testimony that your healing and powerful art of acupuncture, of which you are King, gives me life, hope and energy.
It's been a year since my spine operation. A client whose son had come to you for migraine headaches, which you soon cured, referred me to you. At age 63, my pain was excruciating and unbearable, and most likely "sciatica" and some form of rheumatoid arthritis. It had been diagnosed with the MRI procedures as spinal stenosis, and because the spine had shifted forward a fusion procedure was necessitated. Before coming to you I'd had four steroid pain relief procedures, been placed on prescription painkillers and I'd personally tried a number of things to curb the blinding pain. Nothing worked, except for your good acupuncture procedures, which were successful.
Since the operation and your wonderful help I've come back to you for weekly visits and will remain under your care because there are residual and new matters which acupuncture has treated. You've helped with leg, arm, and back nerve pain, insomnia and general welfare and energy.
I look forward to the future under your good care and thank you so much for all you've done and all you mean to my loved ones and me.
With my best wishes and regards, I am,
Diet Traditionally in East Asian medicine, doctors who could give session by prescribing a menu designed specifically for a patient after examining him or her were called, literally, food doctors. They held the most highly esteemed position among the hierarchy within the medical field, followed in order by, again literally,illness doctors, injury doctors, andanimal doctors, which roughly correspond to the modern internist, general surgeon, and veterinarian. In terms of human health maintenance, food is the most fundamental. Thus it can be understood why doctors who could judge which foods were good and which bad for a patient based on an examination of their condition were considered as the first rank physicians.
The yin and yang theory of East Asian medicine represents the most fundamental mode of thought (or way of visualizing or thinking about something) to occur in ancient China and Japan. Everything in existence and all phenomena, regardless of whether they could be seen or not, were categorized as either yin or yang. A balanced state between the two, whether in politics, economics, or the health of humans, was seen as the most desirable natural state. In terms of therapeutic session based on the regulation of diet as well, patients were made to eat food that was specified as either yin or yang and that was accordingly prescribed based on the diagnosis of their pattern of imbalance. As for daily diet, consuming the whole of a food item is considered the most correct way to eat, since each food item has a natural balance between yin and yang. For instance, the leaves of a vegetable are yin and the root is yang. The inner kernel of rice is yin and the germ is yang. The innards of a small fish are yin and the skin is yang. One's natural resistance to disease should be strong if, from the beginning one eats foods that are well balance in yin and yang. When we give dietary recommendations in our clinic, of course we follow the East Asian medical model. At that time we will tailor our advice on a case-by-case basis. But, it should be realized that quick amelioration of an illness cannot be expected when eating a diet that has too much importance attached to nutritional composition, or a diet overly rich in animal protein. To the contrary, there is a drastically increasing tendency for those with such a diet to develop chronic illness such as cancer, arteriosclerosis, diabetes, or allergies. This is not only in adults, but is also continuingly becoming prevalent among children.
Curing near Illness Before It Arises
Going to the doctor after already coming down with an illness is obviously too late for the prevention of disease. One must be careful to lead a life that includes on a routine basis proper exercise, nutrition and rest, and a positive attitude toward life. That is, it is highly important to take a stance on taking care of one's health in daily life. In Japan people are more accustomed to hearing about health preservation than about disease treatment. The four points of proper exercise, nutrition and rest, and a positive attitude toward life are built into the basic concept of health preservation. To these four points we further recommend acupuncture as one form of regular health management. Acupuncture can help protect against pathogenesis because it aims at increasing the life force. It can be said that this is one of the best health preservation methods. Thus, acupuncture is called medicine that curing near illness before it arises.
Below is a quotation from the Su Wen, which is for us the most important book in our field, as it is the point of origin for acupuncture. This quotation sets the foundation for health preservation, and is written in the first chapter of an 81 chapter long text.
In ancient times the sages taught [the following] to the people below them: There are times [and methods] for warding off those pathogenic influences that weaken and harm [the body]. True ki will follow [the person who is in] a condition of serenity and satisfaction and a state of emptiness. If one preserves one's essence and spirit internally, how can illness occur? Therefore, ki will flow smoothly through those who temper their ambition, have few earthly desires, have contented hearts and fear nothing, and do not work so hard as to become fatigued. [Such people] can have all their wants satisfied. In other words, the people will be simple like an uncarved block of wood because they will enjoy [whatever] food [they have], will be content with [whatever] clothes [they have], will be happy with his/her lot [in life], and will not be concerned about social status. No temptation will divert their eyes, and no carnal desire can mislead their hearts. They will have nothing to worry about even though they may have differences in intelligence, knowledge, or character. Thus, they will be able to follow the Dao.
It is because people used to preserve the power that arises from a life of virtue that they had no cause to worry and were able to live past 100 years of age without becoming decrepit.
The Harmful Effects of Medicines
Synthetic chemicals are able to produced striking effects.However, no matter how well-made a medicine is, synthetic substances have the drawback that, once introduced into the body they affect the whole body, not only lessening the symptoms of illness but also suppressing normal functions.That is why medicines always produce side effects, whether taken in large or small doses.
If one is on medications for a long time, such as for chronic disorders like hypertension, diabetes, or allergies, the body's natural healing power and life forces are suppressed, which allows for the appearance of new symptoms one after the other that are not related to the original illness.The physician is ultimately the cause of such illnesses.That is, they are iatrogenic diseases.
The human body is a harmonious naturalbody, and so, by taking decoctions prepared from herbs that were gathered from nature, in like manner to the health preservation based on diet that was introduced in part VII (Diet), there will be few negative effects.Although, it is also a fact that there are very few Kampo (or Chinese/Japanese herbal medicine) practitioners who can prepare natural herbal formulas suited to a patient's specific condition.Consequently it is a tendency of the times that many kampo practitioners use Western medical theory, which has taken symptomatic treatment as its primary focus.This usage is completely different from the originally intended usage of kampo.That is, formulas are being prepared and used on the same level as modern pharmacological drugs.And even then herbal medicine is treated with chemicals, and so rather than natural herbs, they are closer in form to synthetic medications.The same thing can be said about our daily foodstuffs.Therefore, we truly hope that if you should wish to consult a kampo practitioner that you look for one who can prescribe formulas based on natural medicine.
In addition to general acupuncture session,
we also perform pediatric acupuncture, as well as Shinkiko (or healing energy session), special moxibustion sessionsfor safe deliveries and health preservation of unborn babies and prenatal women, and also provide advice about diet. Furthermore, we use disposable needles and a single non-insertive silver needle for exclusive use with each individual patient. We make every effort to respond to all the needs of our patients. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have about the sessions.
We believe that healing takes place when the feelings and techniques of the practitioner unite with the natural healing ability of the patient. We sincerely wish that you will follow the advice of the practitioners and attain the earliest possible return to health.
Copyright 2006 CULIA KI CLINIC INC. All rights reserved