Monday, October 21, 2013

Weekly Qigong Practice Every Friday at 8:15 AM behind the THSU

The Student Government Association invites all students, faculty and staff to join group Qigong Practice in the back parking lot of the Texas Health and Science University, every Friday mornings at 8:15 AM. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Movie Night Potluck - Friday 7/12 4pm

Join the Student Government for a Movie Night and Potluck Dinner in room 2 of the THSU campus on Friday, July 12, from 4 to 6pm.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Histories Mysteries - Oriental History in Three Acts

On Wednesday 6/19 our very own fantastic librarian, Mr.Ryan Haecker, gave a lecture on the first three dynasties in China. It was fascinating to learn about the multiple layers of Chinese history through the eyes of a scholar and through the eyes of Chinese civilization itself. We learned about the Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties and how other famous Chinese philosophers referred to them in their literature. For example, Confucius mentioned the Duke of Zhou as the paragon of a Moral behavior in his writings. Also, we learned about Fu xi and Nu wa who created the pre and post-heaven Ba Gua diagrams! Learning about Chinese history gives a student of Chinese Medicine a better frame of reference for the time periods and environments that the founders of Chinese Medicine came from. Mr. Ryan Haecker will be continuing his lecture series on 7/3 at 12pm in room #1! Be sure to come at check it out!  

Download the audio-recording here:

Monday, June 17, 2013

Don't forget to look at the past

by: Ryan Luna 

In western culture it is common to look to the future for new inventions, theories and ideas. We automatically associate “new” with better and more efficient. In the United States it is strange that we have some of the most well-funded Universities in the world yet we are still faced with the “problems of our modern times” such as obesity, cancer and depression. Could it be that we keep repeating the same mistakes of the past?

In the field of Chinese Medicine, students get a glimpse of the past by being introduced to classic texts such as the Shang Han Lun or the Yellow Emperor's classic of internal medicine. However, this exposure is all too brief and key aspects of these texts are over looked. Some say that the most important part of the Shan Hang Lun is Zhang Zhong Jing's preface in the beginning of the text. I found out, through a free online lecture by TCM practitioner Andrew Nugent-Head offered by the Association of Traditional Studies, that this preface is the most important part of the text. He states “Zhang Zhong Jing’s Preface is the most exciting and important part of his Shang Han Lun. Understanding what he is really saying is the key to understanding his entire book. In this lecture, I share the Preface just as my teacher, Dr. Li Hongxiang, shared it with me.” In the beginning of the preface, Zhang Zhong Jing explains that most of the physicians of his time were concerned with expanding their business and not curing the sick. He explains, “They stand on the tiptoe of expectancy for influential officials and families of power, diligently and untiringly devoting their efforts only to fame and profit.” Andrew Nugent-Head says that this line refers to chapter thirteen of the Dao de jing which says “What does it mean that success is a dangerous as failure? Whether you go up the ladder or down it, your position is shaky. When you stand with your two feet on the ground, you will always keep your balance.”

Already, Zhang Zhong Jing is sharing his knowledge of the texts of the past. Perhaps the most direct line in the preface of the Shang Han Lun is the following, “Looking at the physicians of today, we see that they do not ponder on the meaning of the medical classics to develop their knowledge, but instead each inherits the skills passed down in their family, constantly following traditional ways.” Of course, most TCM schools in the United States offer at least a brief introduction to the classic texts but there are so many that we do not even hear about or study. A student may still ask “Why would I need to study anything more than the Shang han lun, Huang di nei jing and Wen bing xue?”

One great example of the relevance of ancient texts in our modern times would be the current method of the treatment of Malaria. A major contribution to the discovery to the modern treatment of Malaria occurred in 1972 in China by researchers who read the text “Emergency Prescriptions Kept up one’s Sleeve” by the famous physician Ge Hong. Apparently, Ge hong mentioned that you had to soak the plant in water and then one had to wring-out or squeeze the plant after instead of just soaking the plant in hot water. This description helped find the active ingredient used in modern Malaria treatment. How many more useful remedies lay hidden in Classic TCM texts? It seems that students of TCM would greatly benefit by challenging themselves to research more of these texts in order to heal people more effectively. I recall the words of Professor Feng while I was studying at Zhejiang Chinese Medical University. He said, “Traditional Chinese Medicine is a mountain with treasure inside. Each of us has a pickaxe and we mine with our hard work. Over time we find a gem and we take it with us to use and to share.” Maybe the steps to this mountain are found in the old texts or maybe the gems are the understanding we gain from them. Regardless, we should remember that these texts are full of information that can better our ability to reduce people’s suffering and heal diseases.

Useful Links:

Free lecture on the Shang han lun:

Qing hao and Malaria: