Tea and acupuncture can be used to rebalance and invigorate the human body. Even the 5 elements and seasons have an impact. Time to learn how to unblock winter energies and get back into the flow.
I met Kensei Dojima for the first time last year at his workshops during NION Week, and three things particularly have impressed me. First of all there was his warmth and smile. Beyond that, I appreciated the attention he gave us. He carefully looked at each one individually, said what struck him and gave valuable advice. For example, how to improve the posture or the way how someone was walking. What amazed me most, was what happened to me: At that time, I was very tense which is why Kensei gave me short treatments on two consecutive days by primarily touching and shaking my arms and legs. After the second procedure, I went to my workplace where I started crying in a way I have not for decades, loud and quite out of control. This condition lasted maybe twenty minutes and after that I felt so much better. Negativity and tension have been washed away.
Half a year has passed since then – time to continue the memorable experience by visiting another of Kensei’s workshops at NION Base. On this occasion accompanied by tea expert Anne Pawlak.
Bringing people together
In Japan, you get a cup of welcome tea when you visit someone at home or have an appointment for acupuncture. One of NION’s intentions is to bring people together and, according to Anne, this applies also to tea.
She teaches not only about tea, but also how to be mindful and to sharpen your senses. Therefore, she sometimes collaborates with others, such as yoga teachers or life coaches like at the Ikigai workshop recently. Today she teamed up with Kensei and will use the breaks between his lectures to offer us freshly brewed tea that keeps the energy level high and she will tell ancient stories about the drink.
A program for the body
Kensei’s interest in anatomy began already when he was 14 and he got the Japanese license for acupuncture at the age of 21. He has no clinic of his own, but rather appreciates treating people at their home or at work. That’s what he’s doing this month in Berlin, too. Although he’s here only for the second time, he has a very busy schedule to treat clients.
To him, acupuncture and acupressure technique is like a program: one point works for the brain, the other for the leg and so on. Therapists like him assume that there is an invisible energy, ki, running via 12 meridians or lines, keiraku, through our body. By putting a needle at a certain point he can control ki.
There are two versions of acupuncture. The first one, based on more or less direct results, is easy to learn and apply: you know where you have to push to resolve quite obvious problems like a headache or a stiff neck. But if you really want to treat someone and improve their well-being, you need to know more – about the person and their life, and about the influences of the five elements. Therefore, Kensei treats his clients also based on Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood. The 12 meridians are connected to them as well – and with Yin and Yang there come opposite energies that depend on each other into play, too. Kensei can sense all these aspects like some kind of electricity by touching his clients’ arms, legs, shoulders etc.
The influential factors can even be splitted into seasonal groups, and as we are at the beginning of spring, Kensei focuses on that time of the year.
He tells us, that it is quite easy to get angry in spring. Eyes and liver get stressed, nails become weaker, allergies get stronger, and mental illnesses increase. In spring, our body changes and starts to express feelings – a really good time to detox.
In his presentation, he gave us this summary
- There will be many ups and downs
- Be creative! Right now, it is normal that you can create extreme things
- Don’t eat too much! It is time to detox, the body wants to let everything out
- Drink a lot of water or, even better, good tea to support the detox process
With a smirk on his face he adds to be careful, because in spring, there are usually more creepy people around.
Check and feel yourself!
In treatment, Kensei always checks the blood pressure first. You can not control the heartbeat, so there is some kind of truth in how your blood flows. To examine the pulse he normally puts three fingers on the client’s wrist, just below the ball of the thumb, which is is quite difficult for laypersons though. Because of that, he also shows us how to use the thumb to get in touch with our heartbeat, accompanied by the following: How do you feel? Don’t think of the others, don’t think about data and averages. Just feel yourself!
After getting a good impression of our own condition, Kensei encourages us to form pairs in order to examine the blood pressure of others as well. It is quite interesting, how they differ! One woman’s pulse reminds me of a little rabbit in a hurry, another woman’s heart beat resembles rather a wide river although she is a much smaller person. Needless to say that mine is quite irregular – but at least there is one at all.
This time, Kensei doesn’t demonstrate acupressure, but treats us with acupuncture. After a while, everyone is sitting around comfortably, trying to relax with at least two needles stuck somewhere in the body.
I ask him, based on which criteria he chose the spots, and Kensei explains that he gets a first impression of the body (30%) only by looking at it. He then checks the blood pressure and examines the tongue – our only exposed muscle – to know around 60 percent, which is enough to decide where to put the needles.
Our short excursion lasts only ten minutes, whereas a regular treatment takes about 60 to 90 minutes. Nevertheless, the reactions are strong and diverse: people tell about warmth, dizziness, fire under the skin and even headaches.
As a finish, Kensei recommends an everyday treatment: Put pressure with your thumb for just five seconds on a spot on your inner forearm, three finger width from your wrist.
The idea of acupuncture and acupressure is to keep the body in balance, so it would be the best to be treated regularly. Of course, if you have acute pain, it will be taken care of too, but from a holistic point of view, all your life factors are important. No wonder that Kensei has a clear message for the day: If you want change in your life, it is always good to check inside first.