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Re: [PulseDiagnosis] Language etc.

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  • johnhammond3@mac.com
    What is the difrency in Tbetin CM pulse reading. Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile ... From: sppdestiny Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2008
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 30, 2008
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      What is the difrency in Tbetin CM pulse reading.

      Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

      From: sppdestiny <revolution@...>
      Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2008 16:37:16 +0000
      To: <PulseDiagnosis@yahoogroups.com>
      Subject: [PulseDiagnosis] Language etc.

      This is a response I made on another list to an inquiry about the need for
      language skills in practitioners.

      Language is what we do. It is vital, yet remains a layer of abstraction
      removed from what we experience. Yet, it also draws a line and becomes
      of how we construct reality.

      Lonny: I agree Will. From a developmental and evolutionary
      perspective, human language may well be the highest capacity the
      universe has manifested to date. We literally are the universe talking
      to, and listening to, itself as it awakens through us. Laozi said that
      language destroys unity through abstraction but he was referencing
      reality to the void, circular time, and zero. If we look at the
      universe through the eyes of the void we see all of creation as an
      illusion. But if we look at the void through the eyes of the creative
      impulse, we see only potential! (The void isn't potential (jing/ling)
      it's nothing. It's only potential from the perspective of
      Shen/consciousness) .

      When human beings talk about their actual experience, beyond
      ego, their communication is authentic and language is not abstract.
      In fact, when we place our focus on the very edge of our awareness,
      language literally reflects the cutting edge of cosmic evolution. This
      isn't some big idea, it's literally real.

      Laozi protested a bit too much about the limits of language in
      expressing depth given that we are still discussing his words 2500
      years later. I think it's reasonable that a holistic/integral thinker
      with a couple of graduate degrees would be able to precisely
      articulate his or her experience. I'd go so far as to suggest that,
      for people at our level of development, a person only really
      understands something to the exact degree that he or she can
      articulate it. I've long noted that when smart, postmodern, guys are
      pushed on their epistemology, and it begins to crumble, they always
      avail themselves of Laozi's position, "well, you cant really talk
      about any of this anyway!" Ever notice that? )

      Will: That said, the nomenclature debates at the AAAOM conference were
      received. During the strategic planning and consensus panel on Friday
      however, they placed translational concerns at the very bottom of the list
      in terms of importance for the AAAOM. There might be a few reasons for
      We have an excellent body of works on Chinese medicine in the English
      language. Practitioners tend to focus more on the ars-tekne axis and
      not on
      the onto-epistemologica l axis. They tend to be pragmatic and seek that
      leads to clinical outcomes. There, are of course, exceptions. The
      people who
      emphasize langauge tend to be writers and publishers.

      Lonny: I've seen no evidence that it's possible to standardize
      language without compromising the foundation of the medicine through
      imparting a social/political/ memetic agenda. Writers should cite
      sources and define terms with total transparency as to their value
      systems. Beyond that I'm highly skeptical of any positive potential
      outcomes from standardizing language between traditions.

      I know you have taken strong stands against standardized lexicons in
      the past. Have you changed your position? Clarification please.

      Will: I wonder if we need to reframe the dialogue in terms of a
      continuum between
      a journeyman practitioner and the scholarly literati. It is my opinioin,
      that if an American practitioenr were to master the current material
      in the
      English language on Chinese medicine, that they can do a fine job as a
      clinician, and contribute to the field based upon experience and
      analysis of
      that literature. What they cannot do is contribute to the development
      of the
      profession in terms of dialogues based upon an analysis of cases,
      and debates in the source language of Chinese. The profession needs
      both of
      these groups.

      Lonny: I reject the premise that a practitioner cannot contribute to
      case analysis without resorting to a standardized language. It's my
      consideration that I've published three of the most comprehensive case
      studies in the English language. Please inform me if you are aware of
      others as extensive ( I rarely see a case study more than 2 pages long
      and most seem to be three paragraphs). The two case studies in
      Nourishing Destiny were 20 pages each including complete analysis of
      the first ten treatments and outcomes. In, Contemporary Chinese
      Medicine and Acupuncture, Churchill Livingston. Philidelphia, 2002 I
      also published a similar case study. I merely defined my language
      transparently and rigorously without reference to a common accepted

      If I say the patient is "blood deficient", I give the pulse
      and tongue, any other sign and symptoms, and tell what I'm doing about
      it, why, what my expectations were, and what the expected and actual
      outcome was. I also define what I consider the inner dimensions of
      "blood deficiency" to be. I'd prefer to see this rigorous approach
      from practitioners than to have them merely use agreed upon standards
      and buzz words based on assumption of meaning. It's more fluid and
      allows for evolution of meaning in a way standardized lexicons fail to.

      A central point of difference between our views might be that
      I consider discussing, "literature
      and debates in the source language of Chinese" to be largely
      irrelevant to the progress forward of the medicine at this point in
      history. Discovery in these sources is largely now of anthropological
      merit and has little to do with actual development of the medicine in
      the West in the 21st century. That doesn't mean there isn't anything
      of merit there. It just means that 99% of our effort should be on
      carrying the medicine forward in our own social context to meet the
      world challenges that face us today. The Chinese culture as a whole is
      still at an ethnocentric, mythic, and nationalistic level of
      development. The texts were written by humans, and for humans, who no
      longer exist in our clinical practices in the West. These people lived
      in a world that no longer exists. We know a lot more than the ancient
      Chinese did about all manner of things on this planet and in this
      universe. The classics may contain some things of a technical nature
      that can inform us, but our cultural context is so much more advanced.

      Perhaps only 20% of the cannon has been translated but that puts us at
      NO disadvantage. The fact is that even tough a small percentage of
      Chinese physicians could read those texts and understand them, most
      would interpret what they were reading in a cultural context no newer
      than perhaps the 1700's (blue/orange meme). The ancient Chinese had no
      more access to the source of these teachings than we have today, right
      here, right now. While anthropological investigations may be
      attractive to some (and there isn't anything wrong with that) I think
      it's a far less important place to invest one's time and energy than
      in literally becoming the type of human being who can practice
      medicine in a meaningful way given the types of challenges that face
      us today. If the writers of the classics had any particular attributes
      that qualified them to create a medicine with integrity and depth is
      was the possession of integrity and depth. Integrity and depth are a
      tall order for the post-modern human but they are within our grasp

      Now, I know you, Will, are an innovator and that you have a deep
      love for the classics. And that has merit. You are great at what
      you're doing with the pulse, and in other areas, and it's impressive.
      But I am weary of suggestions that the modern practitioner in the West
      is inherently limited in his or her capacity to contribute to the,
      "development of the profession in terms of dialogs based upon an
      analysis of cases". I am weary of any statement or position that
      creates a sense of lacking in students and practitioners. If anything
      is lacking it is integrity and depth and this is a result of culture
      and conditioning- it's not our fault. But if a person is intent on
      integrity and depth, then nothing on heaven or earth can stop him or
      her from attaining it-it's literally in our hands. And the most
      significant aspects of integrity and depth have little to do with
      technical or academic knowledge.

      TO return to our starting point: I consider it far more important for
      those at an Integral/holistic and world-centric level of development
      to be able to articulate their actual experience in terms that make
      sense today in the 21st century then for them to 1. know classical
      Chinese, 2. know modern Chinese, or 3. constrain their inquiry to a
      standardized language. Who a practitioner is, at this point in
      history, matters far more than what they know of a technical nature.

      Warm regards, Lonny

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