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Ma da yang acupuncture

Ma da yang acupuncture

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Published by Keefer Michael
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Published by: Keefer Michael on Nov 12, 2011
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Ma Danyang's 12 Acupoints: ValuablePoints for Acupuncturists
Ma Danyang (originally named Ma Yu) was a famous Daoist (1). He was born around 1123 A.D. to a verywealthy family in Haining (Shandong Province), and as a young man developed talents in the fields ofacupuncture and poetry. In fact, he is well known today for his poem (ode, song) about 12 acupuncturepoints, relayed in this article. Soon after marrying Sun Bu'er, he and his wife followed the Daoist WangChongyang (1113-1170). Wang was one of the leading Daoists of China, and wrote several importantworks, including the text
Chongyang Zhenren Jinguan Yusuo Jue 
Master Wang Chongyang'sInstructions on the Golden Gate and Jade Lock
) which described, among other things, visualizationsof the world within the body as part of a meditation practice in cultivating qi. Ma and his wife built a Daoistretreat for Wang, gave up their extensive family property holdings, and became Daoist monks, living asimple and peaceful life. Eventually they separated in order to pursue their celibate meditative activities insolitude. Before his death, Wang conferred on Ma the secret method of the "Complete Perfection"(
). Ma practiced this and became known as one of the Perfect Ones Who Embrace Oneness.He was thus acknowledged as one of the "seven perfect ones of the north," as was his wife (see theAppendix). He had written two books:
Shenguang Can 
Brilliance of Divine Light
) and
Dongxuan Jinyu Ji 
Gold and Jade Essays of the Pervasive Mystery
). The name that he took, Danyang,translates as "Cinnabar Yang," meaning "Yang Elixir."Ma Danyang had written an ode to 11 miraculous acupuncture points, which was published within the textof
Jade Dragon Manual
in 1329. A century later, Xu Feng (who is known for introducing the eightextraordinary meridians) added a 12th point and gave the ode the new name:
Song of the Twelve Points Shining Bright as the Starry Sky and Able to Heal All the Many Diseases 
. This song was translated toEnglish and published as an appendix to
The Golden Needle and Other Odes of TraditionalAcupuncture
by Richard Bertschinger in 1991 (2). The original name of the 11 point song by MaDanyang is instructive:
Song of the Eleven Points Responding to the Stars in the Sky 
. It is likely that Mawas thinking not only of the wondrous nature of the points, later described as "shining bright as the starrysky," but also about the influence of the stars on the points, as part of the Daoist interpretation ofacupuncture.The ode (song) is structured very simply. Each verse is comprised of phrases of five characters; also,except for the introduction, all verses (describing each of the acupuncture points) are comprised of 8, 10,or 12 of these five-character phrases. After an introduction naming all the points and indicating thatcertain points might be used in pairs, each of the 12 points is described in three parts:
First, there is a brief description of the point's location and methods of finding it.
Second, there is a list of conditions that can be treated by using this acupuncture point. Theconditions are primarily those with a sudden onset of symptoms, but they may also be problemsthat are recurring or continuous. Spasms, pain, stiffness, swellings, fullness, fevers, and digestivesystem disorders are the main ones mentioned.
Third, there may be a comment about how to perform the treatment, such as depth of insertion oruse of moxibustion, and there is always a comment about the wonderful effects of the treatment,usually pointing to immediate results, or to bringing peace, or magically vanquishing the disorder.
The 12 points are presented in the table below, including a concise listing of the indications given by MaDanyang in the ode (the point LV-3 is the 12
point that was added later and described in the same styleas used by Ma). After the table, the entire ode is provided, with slight editing of the translation byBertschinger.
Ma Danyang's 12 Star Points
Point Name
Indications According to Ma Danyang's Song
Three Miles ST-36swollen belly, cold stomach, intestinal noises,diarrhea, swollen leg, sore knee or calf, injuryfrom cold, weakness or emaciation, parasites,aging
Inner Courtyard ST-44chill in the hands and feet, hatred of voices, skinrashes, sore throat, continuous yawning,toothache, intermittent fevers without appetite
Crooked Pond LI-11aching elbow, hand cannot close, arm very weak,throat closes up, repeated or persistent fevers,severe lesions over the whole body
Joining Valleys LI-4headache with a swollen face, malarial fevers,burning then cold, tooth decay, nose bleed, lock jaw and unable to speak
Middle Equilibrium BL-40lumbago, especially when severe and leading upthe back, aching muscles which cannot extend,rheumatism which returns irregularly, kneestiffness
 Receiving theMountainBL-57severe back-pain, hemorrhoids, bowel difficulties,swollen ankles and knees, repeated orcontinuous tremors or aches, cramps andspasms
Supreme Rushing LV-3sudden fits and convulsions, swollen throat orbreast, both feet unable to walk, all types ofhernias, cloudy mist in front of the eyes, achingwaist
Kunlun Mountains BL-60spasms and pain in the tailbone, difficulty inbreathing, fullness in the chest, being unable towalk or even step out, painful movement
Jumping Circle GB-30lower back pain, rheumatism aggravated by coldor damp, pain running down from thigh to calf
Yang Mound GB-34swollen knee accompanied by numbness, one-sided pains due to cold, inability to raise the foot,sitting or lying as someone old and weak
Penetrating Within HT-5stammering and stuttering, distress, irritation,palpitations, limbs go heavy, head, face, andcheeks turn red, lack of appetite and expression
Narrow Defile LU-7migraine, the whole body lifeless with wanderingpains, phlegm incessantly blocks above or inlockjaw
The appearance of the verses, in Chinese characters, was like this one for Zusanli (3):Here is the translated text of the entire song:
Song of the Twelve Points Shining Bright as the Starry Sky and Able to Heal All the Many Diseases 
Put out your hand to Three Miles, Inner Courtyard, the Crooked Pond, and Joining Valleys.Pair Middle Equilibrium with Receiving the Mountain, Supreme Rushing with Kunlun Mountains,Jumping Circle accompanies the Yang Mound, Penetrating Within along with Narrow Defile.With support use the rule of support; with severance, use the rule of severance.All 360 holes do not escape these 12 strange charms; healing a disease is like magic:A torrent whirling as wind-driven snow, the Northern Dipper sends down its true workings.The Golden Lock teaches us to snap it open.One truly clever can pass this on; the unfaithful have only restless talk.
Zusanli, Three Miles, ST-36
Three Miles under the eye of the knee, three inches in between the two tendons.One can reach into the center of a swollen belly.It is splendid at healing a cold stomach, intestinal noises, and diarrhea.A swollen leg, sore knee, or calf, an injury from the cold.Weakness or emaciation and parasitic infestation of all sorts.When your age has passed 30, needling and moxa applied at this point change your thinking.To find it, look extremely carefully; three cones of moxa, eight fen in, and peace.
Neiting, Inner Courtyard, ST-44
The Inner Courtyard outside the second toe, this point belongs to Foot Yangming.It can heal a deathly chill in the hands and feet and is good for the hatred of voices.Skin rashes and sore throat, continuous yawning and toothache.Intermittent fevers without appetite, a needle here means true awakening.
Quchi, Crooked Pond, LI-11
To find Crooked Pond, fold the hand to the chest, bend the elbow and seek the corner of the bone.It is splendid at healing an aching elbow or an arm attacked so the hand cannot close.When drawing back a bow is impossible, or the muscles so loose you cannot comb the head.If the throat closes up suddenly and it seems fatal, when fevers are repeated and persistent.Or for severe lesions over the whole body, immediately needling this point they improve.
Hegu, Joining Valleys, LI-4
The Joining Valleys lie at the Tiger's Mouth, between two bones where thumb and finger fork.A headache with a swollen face, malarial fevers, burning then cold.Tooth decay or a nose bleed, lock jaw and unable to speak.The needle enters five fen deep, the patient then immediately at peace.
Weizhong, Equilibrium at the Middle, BL-40
Equilibrium at the Middle in the crook of the knee is on the horizontal crease within the pulse.For lumbago when you cannot straighten up, especially when severe and leading up the back.Aching muscles which cannot extend, rheumatism which returns irregularly.A knee difficult to extend or bend, the needle goes in and immediately there is rest.

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