It would help us in corroborating some of the principles according to which we work if patients were able to report precise effects when feeding back on the outcome of any particular treatment, but it is rare for patients’ assessment of improvement (or otherwise) to be so precise as to enable us to relate this to any particular treatment rather than to a combination of treatments. To encourage us, however, it does, occasionally happen that a patient may say something like, “whatever you did last time made me feel marvellous (made my backache better, helped me cope better)”.
On rare occasions, feedback can be even more specific. I treasure still, like some beacon in this particular wilderness, the memory of a Wood patient who, when I needled Gall Bladder 40, described immediately in perfect detail what has been handed down to me as the Gall Bladder’s meridian pathway. He traced the movement of energy down to the toe and back up along the outer leg, where with great accuracy he showed me the odd lateral dip the Gall Bladder is said to take at mid-calf, and then continued to draw a path up over his knee to his abdomen, finally arriving at his head, where he said, “I seem to feel something up here at the side of my eye.” I have had other Wood patients describe the line of some movement of energy along a Gall Bladder pathway in this way, but none so precisely as this. It may well be that Wood, the element which structures us, can feel the structure of its own shape reasserting itself as more energy, like sap in a plant, courses through its pathways. I have not had such detailed descriptions of the passage of energy from patients of other elements.