August 11, 2017
During the weekend of July 29th and 30th, twenty-two participants studied with Teishin master, Takahiro Funamizu, and learned how to treat psychiatric mental health disorders using Japanese contact needling technique. Funamizu Sensei made a special visit to AIMC Berkeley, to teach this weekend continuing education seminar. He traveled from Tokyo, Japan, where he is an esteemed faculty member at Tokyo Therapeutic Institute, one of the oldest acupuncture schools in Japan and the only school in the entire country that teaches Teishin in their curriculum.
After the devastating 9.1 magnitude earthquake in 2011, Japan was overrun with many deaths, injuries, and destruction. Many places were without running water and electricity for weeks, and needless to say, the earthquake survivors were constantly on edge, coping with huge losses, trauma, and were constantly re-triggered due to experiencing frequent aftershocks following the quake. Funamizu Sensei traveled to the most affected areas and gave Teishin treatments that brought relief to the people and helped pave the way for healing.
Teishin, or Japanese contact needles, do not puncture the skin; instead, they are held with very light pressure at acupuncture points, on the surface of the skin to treat a myriad of conditions. Teishin are blunt needle-shaped instruments made of precious metals (i.e. gold, silver, copper, titanium, etc.) or gemstones and crystals (i.e. jade, quartz, selenite, blue kyanite, etc.). Because Teishin treatments are so gentle and painless, they are ideal treatments for pediatrics, the extremely deficient, and the needle-phobic.
Participants learned and practiced the Teishin Protocol developed by Funamizu Sensei, specifically for people with psychiatric mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, schizophrenia, and eating disorders. In addition, a Pediatric Protocol was also shared that effectively treats insomnia, night terrors, and tantrums.
In order to be an effective practitioner, it is important for one to develop competence in sensing qi. Funamizu Sensei encouraged participants to practice qigong regularly for self-development. To this end, participants were taught different hand and body exercises to help improve practitioners’ sensitivity to feeling and cultivating qi. According to Funamizu Sensei, the most important thing he wants students to take away from this seminar is the understanding that as practitioners we gather healing energy from the Earth and the Heavens, allow it to flow through our own bodies and into our patients via the Teishin needle.
Kenzie Rubin, AIMC Berkeley Student, appreciated the different techniques that Funamizu Sensei shared with the class. Before this weekend seminar, she had limited knowledge about Teishin. After just two days of study, she feels her knowledge base has definitely expanded. Gina Dang, another AIMC Berkeley student, felt like this weekend seminar was an extension in her interest in Japanese treatment techniques. After the school trip to Japan this past April and her medical qigong studies at AIMC Berkeley, she appreciates Teishin as another way to feel qi.
This is the fourth time that Funamizu Sensei has taught at AIMC Berkeley, and we look forward to his next visit.