One of the problems I face now when teaching students about five element acupuncture is that they are all too often unsure of their own element, and this casts a shadow of insecurity over their belief in five element practice as a whole. I think that this has a lot to do with there being so few five element teachers around now confident enough to make a diagnosis (see my blog of 11 September), plus the understandable reluctance of even experienced practitioners to venture a diagnosis in case they step on the toes of a colleague who may be treating the student. So there is now greater timidity about moving into the area of diagnosing than there was in the good old days when we all clamoured to have JR Worsley diagnose us with the heartfelt approval of whatever practitioner we happened to have at the time.
Gone are those days and with them is gone the certainty which
this led to. As I have often said, our
particular guardian element shapes the whole of our life, including how we
interact with our patients. Not to
understand the nature of that interaction is to lose much essential information
about our patients and may also cloud our judgement. It can certainly undermine our faith in what
we are doing.
So I plead with all those who practise or are studying five
element acupuncture to persist in their efforts to work out what their own
element is, and, if they feel their treatment is not supporting them in the way
they hoped, to dare discuss this with their practitioner A
practitioner must always listen if a patient, particularly another practitioner,
is unhappy with the treatment offered.
As everybody knows, it will always take some time to find the right
element, and all of us five element practitioners should welcome any input from
our colleagues to help us in any way reach a correct diagnosis, rather than, as
is all too likely, feeling threatened.
If a practitioner is unsure of their own element, how
effective do we think the treatments they offer others will be, based as they
will be on an underlying feeling of insecurity?