The Middle East has a long history of war and unrest. Whatever phase of history you’d like to zoom the timeframe, you’ll likely see conflict. In Episode 72 of Everyday Acupuncture Podcast I spoke with an Israeli practitioner on what it is like to live in a place where you’re frequently hearing air raid sirens and headed to a bomb shelter. In this conversation we hear reflections of two practitioners who share their experience in the aftermath of the attacks of October 7th.

In this conversation with Keren Assouline and Guy Sedan, we hear from experienced practitioners who share with us what it's like living and working amidst the ongoing conflict in Israel. They have seen first hand how the trauma of war infiltrates the body, disorders the qi and leaves an effect on the mind, spirit and society.

Listen into this discussion that provides a window into using the tools of Chinese medicine to help a society cope with the deep impacts of living through war, fear and violence.

In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Living in Israel and experiencing the impacts of war and trauma
  • Reality Affects Us
  • Role of acupuncturists and Chinese medicine in treating trauma
  • Acupuncturists Without Borders (AWB) and their work in Israel
  • The “circle” healing approach used by AWB
  • Physiological and emotional impacts of trauma
  • Keeping it simple with the treatment of trauma
  • Importance of community support for practitioners
  • Finding meaning and purpose through serving the community
  • Using ear needles and The Circle to heal
  • Resilience and growth after traumatic events
  • Self-care practices for practitioners
  • Israel is a kind of melting pot of the Middle East
  • The importance of a sense of purpose in a moment of trauma and disorientation
  • The Yin power of acupuncture and opportunity to heal through not doing
  • Considering identity in our clinical work

When an emotion arises, it serves as an invitation for expression. By expressing your emotions, you fully embrace and acknowledge the moment they bring. It is the motion within the e-motion. Only then can you release and let go. I firmly believe that this practice holds equal importance to physical exercise and maintaining a healthy diet.

Keren Assouline

The past 20 years, I have been practicing and teaching Chinese Medicine, with a particular focus on mental health disorders, especially Post Trauma. Additionally, ten years ago, after visiting the U.S. and participating in the Acupuncturists Without Borders (AWB) training,

I co-founded AWB Israel with a few colleagues. Since October 7, we have been working with numerous populations who have experienced pain and suffering.

Visit Keren on her Instagram feed, or her AWB Israel site.

Take time to document your cases , both your successes and failures. This will help you for you current patient, and will allow you to review your clinical reasoning.

Guy Sedan

I am a Chinese Medicine practitioner based in Jerusalem, Israel, working in a private clinic and with Leumit, an Israeli HMO.

My journey into the world of Chinese Medicine began at the age of 16 when I started practicing Tai Ji. Following my army service, I pursued Computer Science at the Hebrew University. However, during the final year of my studies, I encountered digestive issues that were not resolved by Western medicine. Seeking alternatives, I explored various practitioners until I crossed paths with Prof. Guan Zheng, the head of the Tui Na department at Jinan Hospital in Shandong. Invited by Israeli Medi-Sin, a college of Chinese Medicine, Prof. Guan Zheng taught Tui Na and played a pivotal role in my recovery, sparking my deep interest in Chinese Medicine.

Motivated by my personal healing experience, I enrolled in a formal 4-year study program at Medi-Sin, completing my studies in 2004. Focusing on internal medicine and the psychological aspects of healing, I integrated acupuncture, herbs, Tui Na, and “talk therapy” into my clinic. Ongoing mentorship from Dr. Guan and clinical psychologist Gili Tzur enriched my practice.

In 2010, I began following Sharon Weizenbaum’s blog, and in 2016, I committed to the GMP (Graduate Mentorship Program). Sharon’s teachings have significantly transformed my practice, enhancing my diagnostic skills and my ability to handle complex cases.This journey has not only deepened my understanding of Chinese Medicine but also allowed me to contribute to the growth and learning of others in the field.

Guy has a course in Hebrew on Chai Hu Gui Zhi Gan Jiang Tang.



Links and Resource

You can donate to support the work of Acupuncturists Without Borders in their effort to help those suffering with trauma in Israel.


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