When I was living and studying medicine in Beijing in 2003, Craig Mitchell shared with me a book he found on herbal medicine. Back at that time I was working on my Chinese and it was not very good, but reading interesting books on medicine was a way I encouraged myself to keep at the Chinese.
When I first read Ten Key Formula Families in Chinese Medicine I thought my Chinese was perhaps getting worse, because the ideas contained in it were so different from what I'd previously been exposed to. Turns out, I was understanding it, and the perspective of Dr Huang Huang changed how I thought about and used herbs.
Dr Huang has continued to develop his ideas and Eran Even did his Ph.D in China with Dr Huang. He's a great resource for engaging the ideas of Dr Huang, and he's got some great classes on formula families. You can find those over at www.chinesemedicineclassics.com.
And Ten Key Formula Families in Chinese Medicine is available from Eastland Press.
I thought I’d know a lot more after 25 years in practice, and I’ve also learned so much that I never expected.
Over time I’ve learned to say less in clinic and to listen more. It sounds easy; it’s not. It’s not easy because it is oh so easy for the helpful spirit in me to want to be of service and ‘give something’ to my patients. It’s taken a long time to realize that attempting to give something to a patient that they did not want or ask for was a burden to them, and a waste of time and breath for me.
Over time I discovered that getting still and seeing if I could understand my patients from their point of view, if I could connect with the kind of empathy that seeks first to understand, or if I could patiently wait for a patient to tell me what they actually needed, it seemed to help. It made diagnosis easier, and my treatments more precise.