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Esoteric Acupuncture Basics All About

Esoteric Points
Esoteric Acupuncture Basics, Philosophy and Definition, Points

by cat

Dr. Mikio Sankey

Many of the points in Esoteric Acupuncture (EA) are the same as or are similar to
acupuncture/acupressure point in Chinese, but there are some differences. The information for this
article comes from several Mikio Sankey workshops I have attended as well as from his 4th
book, Sea of Fire: Cosmic Fire.

This article gives you a look at why we use names rather than numbered points in EA and provides a
way of looking at each point to help you understand why the esoteric patterns use these points.

Whats in a Name?
The first difference you may notice in EA is that the points are not primarily labeled by number, but
by name. I graduated from an acupuncture school that taught points by the number, so this was a
little strange to me at first. Even if you attended a school that taught points by the name, you might
notice that the names used in EA deviate from what you learned.

Why is this? This is because our words have power. That which we speak becomes part of the
permanent record, the Akashic record, and can never be unspoken. By using the Esoteric names for
the points we are bringing that intention and energy into our conscious world and strengthening the
healing inherent in these names.

Locating Esoteric Acupuncture Points

Put away the strings and measures you learned to use in acupuncture
school. The point location you learned is a good starting point, but is by no means definitive. Esoteric
Acupuncture requires you to use your intuitive senses to find the points. For me that means feeling
very very lightly with the fingertips of my left hand until I feel a something. There is usually a shallow
depression where the point is, but not always. Im not being vague on purpose I just dont have any
words for the sensation I feel that means this is where the qi is. Some people see a something
rather than feeling a something, some people just know this is it. How you sense the qi will depend
on how your intuition talks to you. It will probably be different from what others experience and that is
more than ok its perfect.

The most important point here is that you are feeling for qi, for the there it is! sensation. As you
know, we all feel qi a little bit differently. When you are locating esoteric points dont press into the
skin because qi will travel to where ever you press. You are looking for where the qi is naturally
around or on the point.

Needling Esoteric Points

These are some basic concepts for needling esoteric patterns. If you take the time to familiarize
yourself with them before you needle your next EA pattern. If you use these suggestions you will find
that the effectiveness of your EA sessions increases significantly.

Needle Gently

There is no need to needle strongly or deeply, nor to manipulate the needles when you perform an
Esoteric pattern. You dont need to get the Da Qi either. As a matter of fact, gentle needling is more
powerful than strong needling. Insert gently and only deep enough for the needle to stand up on its

Needle With Intention

Quiet your mind then concentrate on why you are

needling this client with this pattern. Let your intent be clear in your mind before you insert the

Needle In Order
Esoteric patterns are constructed as a kind of keycode to unlock doors. In order for the patterns to
work as intended they must be inserted in order. If you realize you forgot a point in the needling
sequence stop needling. Go back to the first point in the sequence, touch it and send qi to this point.
Continue through the points in order until you get to the one your forgot. Now insert the point. Touch
the next point in the sequence and send qi to it. Continue doing this until you get back to where you
were in the pattern. (If you had already completed the pattern except for the forgotten point just do
this for each point remaining in the sequence.) (1)

Needle Where You Feel Qi

Ideally, when you locate Esoteric Acupuncture points you use what you learned in school to get in
the very near ballpark of the point, but then you either feel or see the Qi and put the needle
in that spot even if it differs slightly from the technical location you memorized in school. I know
people that can see the point even before they feel for it. Im not one of those people. But I can run
the fingertips of my left hand very lightly around the area where the point should be and I can feel a
little something that I have learned is me connecting with the Qi of the point. I place a fingertip
lightly on this point, then roll it off and tap a needle into the spot.

If you cant feel it, see it, or sense the Qi in some other manner, dont fret over it. Just use the
locations you learned in school and keep trying to feel or see the Qi. I couldnt do it at first either.
Then I could, but it didnt work all the time. Now its pretty consistent unless Im just terribly
distracted, which is my cue to focus on my breath and on being in the moment.

You will find your ability develops as you work with Qi through meditation or Qigong. Anytime you are
working with Qi you are also working with what yoginis call prana, so yoga practiced with a focus on
your internal development will also help you develop your ability to sense Qi.

Most of the points below will feel familiar to you if you have studied acupuncture point locations,
though a few do differ. Though the points are used in a non-traditional way, they still do all the stuff
you studied.

Most EA points are needled on the right side first, regardless of the clients gender, then on the left.
There are a few variations to this rule of thumb which will be spelled out in the EA patterns you use.

Points on the Head and Neck

Tian Man or Celestial Fullness (also called 100 Meetings)

Tian Man (Du 20) is the point is right below your Crown Chakra, which is where you connect to your
higher self, to God, to the Universe, or whatever you call your higher power.Before I can explain this
adequately, lets have a bit of Chakra Chat. There is a minor chakra (as opposed to the seven major
ones most of us know) in the cranium called the Brahmaranda Chakra. Theres another minor chakra
that rests on the top of the head called the Guru Chakra. The Crown Chakra, one of the major ones
which most people know as the 7th Chakra, is above the Guru Chakra and doesnt actually touch the
physical body. In order to move qi up from the base of your body, the Root Chakra, all the way up
through the physical body to the 7th/Crown Chakra you have to bridge the gap between the physical
and the Crown Chakra. Tian Man is the site where the Kundalini energy (the qi that rises up from the
base of the spine at the Root) jumps that gap.

By using this point with the intention of doing an esoteric treatment, you can help activate and
balance the Crown chakra or Sahasrara. If you are a meditator of some kind and are working on
your inner self (as opposed to working out, exercising, studying, working at your clinic and generally
focusing on your outer self) you might also be able to activate higher energetic centers in and above
the head using Tian Man. Whether this actually activates this way is up to you and the client. If you
have both been working on your inner selves there is a better possibility that this will be true.

In Esoteric Acupuncture Tian Man (Du 20) is further back on the head than the way it is taught in
acupuncture schools. Tian Man as taught in traditional acupuncture is at the apex of the head, which
is where human connects to sky, to the cosmos. This is probably true when you are younger, but as
you develop and learn to quiet your mind through meditation you learn to drop your chin to lengthen
your neck. At that time in your life that spot you learned to call Du 20 seems to move slightly forward
and the spot on your head that points directly to the sky is further back. You will find Tian
Man somewhere near the posterior-most Sishencong point in a fairly obvious depression on the
centerline of the head (i.e., still on the Du channel).

Sishencong or Four Wisdom (also called Spirit Brightening)

These four points are approximately 1 cun lateral, anterior, and posterior to Tian Man. Be sure to use
the esoteric location for Tian Man when you set these points. They are usually needled anterior first,
then lateral right, lateral left, and finally posterior. I visualize a triangle pointing anteriorly after setting
the first 3, then a triangle pointing posteriorly after setting the last point.

The concept of double triangles runs through EA rather often and represents a fire triangle (anterior
or upward) and a water triangle (posterior or downward). The balance of fire/water is a common
thread you will see over and over again.

This set of points energizes the Crown chakra and the Guru Chakra. These four points plus Tian
Man form a double tetrahedron.

Tian Chong or Celestial Thoroughfare (also called Celestial Surge)

You know this point as Gallbladder 9. Some texts translate Tian Chong as Celestial Hub, implying
that this area allows higher spiritual energies not just to enter, but also to distribute to other areas or
aspects of the client. You will find this point around the traditional location or perhaps a bit higher on
the head. Feel for a depression and needle there. Gb 9 is needled on the right first, then on the
left.This point is also about inner hearing rather than the sense of physical hearing. These points
can awaken the possibility of clairaudience.

Feng Fu or Wind/Spirit Mansion

You know this point as Du 16 and is located in the traditional location (barring your intuition finding it
in a slightly different spot of course). You might find a slight depression heresometimes you will
find two or three of them. Let yourself be pulled by your intuition to the point of greatest Qi and
needle there. Sometimes it feels like it is pushing outward when I feel it, sometimes it feels like a
depression that is trying to pull my Qi into it.

This is a Window of Heaven point and a Ghost point. It is also the entry point into the brain. This
point is also called Gui Xue or Gui Lin in some texts, which translates respectively to Ghost Hole
and Ghost Forest. The implication is that one can communicate with those on the spiritual plane via
this point.

Feng Fu also communicates with a minor chakra called Alta Major, the pineal gland, and the pituitary
gland. There is a pathway from Feng Fu to the brain and to the Brahmaranda chakra, an inner
cranial chakra. (Yeah.lots more chakras than just the seven most of us know!) Qi travels this
pathway when you needle Feng Fu (Du 16), which is why you often see it used in combination with
Tian Man (Du 20) and Yintang. And no, its not likely youll be needling all three, but you will see
several patterns that as the client to make a visualized triangular connection between these three.

If you want to know more about this very important point in EA, check out pages 231-234 in Sea of
Fire Cosmic Fire.

Tong Tian or Celestial Connection

Tong Tian (Bladder 7) is connected to Shang Xing (Du 23) in some EA patterns to make a triangular
shape. Triangles are very important in esoteric acupuncture and are capable of generating strong
energetic fields. This particular triangle is capable of activating the Guru Chakra, the chakra which
sits between the top of the head and the Crown Chakra.

Shang Xing or Upper Star

Shang Xing (Du 23) is a major point for activating the bridge from the Brahmaranda Chakra in the
cranium up to the Guru Chakra resting on top of the head.The term upper star refers to a shape
that is created when Shang Xing is needled along with the Sishencong points.

Shen Ting, Spirit Court or Courtyard of Heaven

Shen Ting (Du 24) is another point for energizing the Brahmaranda Chakra and accessing the
Crown Chakra. You will find it in several patterns in Esoteric Acupuncture including one of my
favorites, the Eight Heart Gates pattern.

Ajna Group

Ajna is a Sanskrit word which means command or summoning. It is also the name given to the 6th
chakra which is often referred to as the Third Eye. This is the area associated with your intuitive
seeing.This is a group of four (sometimes five) points set in a diamond pattern with point you know
as Yintang at the bottom-most point of the group. This is not a traditional set of points used in TCM
with the exception of the Yintang point. This grouping activates the sequence which allows the client
access to their Indu Chakra, Manas Chakra, and to the Third Eye Chakra.

To locate these points you first locate Yintang. Next, measure the distance between the left and right
inner canthus. Using this distance, go upward from Yintang. This is the Ajna #1 point. The Ajna #2
point is right between Yintang (referred to in Esoteric Acupuncture as Ajna #3) and Ajna #1. The two
remaining points are directly above the canthi and level with Ajna #2. The point on the right is Indigo
#1 and the point on the left is Indigo #2.

Tian Rong or Heavens Content

Tian Rong (Small Intestine 17) is a Window of Sky point. It is used in Esoteric patters along with Tian
Qi in Eight Heart Gates and other EA patterns. Tian Rong is used to access the part of the heart
pathway that travels to the tongue. When used as an esoteric point it can awaken the higher/spiritual
aspect of the heart.

Tian Qi or Celestial Pool

Tian Qi (Ren 24) is often considered to be a heart point because of its association with the portion of
the heart channel that opens into the underside of the tongue. It is used with Tian Rong in some
patterns for this reason.

Points on the Anterior Trunk

Yuan Jian or The Source

TCM acu-geeks refer to this as Ren 17. Yuan Jian is another heart point for fairly obvious location
reasons, but is more connected to the pericardium. In Esoteric Acupuncture as in old school Chinese
medicine the pericardium meridian is seen as a more direct pathway to the Anahata (Heart Chakra)
than the heart meridian is. Yuan Jian is the key point to activate the Anahata.

Karma Release Points

This is a 4-point grouping around the umbilicus located approximately 1/2 cun from the outer border
of the umbilicus. If you arrange them as if they were numbers on a clock the top-most point would be
12:00, left and right would be 9:00 and 3:00 respectively (and they may or may not be located where
Kidney 16 is depends on the size of the belly button), and the bottom point would be at 6:00. The
top-most point is referred to as The Point of Stillness. The points are needled this way:

1. Point of Stillness (12:00)

2. 9:00 point
3. 3:00 point
4. 6:00 point
These points are used to release karmic debris that came along from past lives and to harmonize
and strengthen the etheric body. They have the ability to tonify the Yuan Qi and are also sister points
to Sishencong. When used with these they stabilize and ground your client as the Sishencong points
unlock the gateway to the Crown (Sahasrara) Chakra.

Guan Yuan or Original Gate

Guan Yuan (aka, Ren 4) strengthens the Lower Dan Tian and can activate and strengthen the Yuan
Qi. It also helps to harmonize and tonify the Swadthisthana or Sacral Chakra.

Something fun to know: the Lower Dan Tian is also called the Fields of Red Elixer and Fields of
Cinnabar. Cinnabar is mercury or quicksilver, a very handy but extremely toxic mineral. In ancient
Chinese and Tibetan medicine this mineral, if refined correctly with the right herbs transformed from
a powerful toxin to an amazing medicine. So we all start off with a raw toxin and its up to us to either
refine ourselves into a powerful medicine for ourselves and others.or to remain toxic.

Points on the Posterior Trunk

Da Zhui Big Vertebra or Big Hammer

Da Zhui (Du 14) activates the Vishuddha (Throat) Chakra and the pituitary gland. This point is the
key gateway to connect the lower/concrete mind to the higher/abstract mind. This point also has a
resonance which activates the Ajna center at the Yintang point.I think of this point as Big Hammer
because it resonates when you needle it, activating Yintang as well as Tian Chong (Gb 9) and Tian
Ting (Sj 15). Da Zhui is therefore a major hidden gateway with the capacity to help your client open
up to an expanded level of consciousness, giving access to their lifes purpose as well as to the
healing of their heart, mind, and body.

Tian Zong Celestial Gathering or Heavens Worship

This point is also known as Small Intestine 11 in TCM school. The name Tian

Zong implies that this is an area where

energies from higher celestial realms enter and gather. These points are closely connected to the
energies of the Anahata or Heart Chakra and there is a strong energetic connection between Tian
Zong and Shen Dao (Du 11) as well.

If you have done some EA treatments and wondered what the heck SI 11 was doing in the pattern,
its because these are also referred to as the Wing Maker Points. These are the wings of the heart.
The Wing Maker Frequency is the gateway to multi-dimensional realities.

Shen Dao or Spirit Path

Shen Dao (Du 11), just below the spinous process of T5, is the key entrance point to the Anahata or
Heart Chakra on the back of the body. There is a concept called the Jewel in the Lotus among
meditators in some eastern spiritual practices.

If youve ever heard the mantra Om mani padme hum, a mantra associated with Avolkiteshvara who
is also known as Quan Yin in Chinese culture, this is the mantra which can activate the Jewel in the
Lotus, the compassion within the human heart. (Mani means jewel or bead and Padme translates to
lotus flower.) Shen Dao is the point equivalent to this mantra, able to open the door to the Heart
Chakra and compassion.
Shen Dao is also referred to as one of the Lower Twin Flames. You may have heard the saying , We
are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human
experience.(2) Completely true. So why do we exist in a physical form? To experience form and
relationship. Our spiritual and human selves are represented by twin flames within. Seeking your
twin flame is like seeking your soulmate, but rather than looking on eHarmony, you are looking for
the spark of the divine, that infinite compassion within. To develop this requires time in meditation
with a calm mind and connection with the divine.

Tian Ting or Celestial Hearing

San Jiao 15 or Tian Ting is a pair of points that often goes with Tian Chong/Gb 9 to create the
Upper Shaoyang Gate which means in EA terms that one is working on both inner and outer parts
of themselves. Much like the Ajna group allows one to see from within and access information that is
sourced from Spirit, these points allow the client to hear that still small voice of intuition that is
connected to the Divine.

There are many hourglass type shapes within Esoteric Acupuncture. Hourglass shapes could be
interpreted as either a type of figure 8, reflecting infinity, or they can be seen as a four-sided pyramid
viewed from directly over the capstone of the pyramid. You can also view them as a mobius strip,
which has no end and no beginning, again reflecting infinity.

Mingmen or Gate of Life

Mingmen (Du 4) is one of the strong anchoring points (along with Kidney 1) and also assists in
strengthening the positive aspects of Swadhisthana, the 2nd Chakra. Mingmen is also where the
fire of the body resides, which on a physical level refers to our qi and vitality. In a more esoteric
sense, this is a mystic fire, the kundalini energy that resides at the base of the spine.

Mingmen is also the sister point to Shen Dao and is the other of the Lower Twin Flames. Remember
learning that the heart is a fiery organ and the kidney has the mingmen fire? These two points
represent the fire of the heart and the fire of the kidney mingmen the lower twin flames. The
relationship between Shen Dao and Mingmen is also one of fire (heart) and water (kidney). You will
see a lot of upward and downward pointing triangles in the Esoteric Acupuncture patterns. This
represents that same balance: fire and water, yang and yin, masculine and feminine.

Points on the Lower Limbs

Esoteric Weizhong

This point is in between Bladder 40 and Kidney 10 in a depression at the popliteal crease. Weizhong
activates the second chakras minor frequencies and is intimately connected to Mingmen. There is
also a minor chakra here called the Satala Chakra which is intimately connected to the Sacral
Chakra, just like Mingmen is. For this reason you will see Weizhong used in combination
with Mingmen in EA patterns. When you become aware of the triangle this combination forms you
see a large triangle pointing upward. Upward point triangles are fire or Heart triangle.

Yang Lingquan or Yang Tomb Spring

Not a terribly descriptive name, I hope! Yang Lingquan (Gallbladder 34) assists in clear inner hearing
and has lovely effects on the Liver qi as well. Actually, you can pair this point with Yang Qi (Sj 4) as
an alternate form of four gates called The Shaoyang Four Gates which works on both the lower and
higher spiritual frequencies at the same time.

Cheng Shan

Cheng Shan (Bladder 57) harmonizes the energies of the Root (Muladhara) Chakra. While the lower
aspects of these bilateral points work on the physical root of the body and on hemorrhoids, the
higher frequencies of these points connect to Feng Fu/Du 16 to form a triangular pattern sometimes
referred to as The Mountain Within the Cranium, the Brahmaranda Chakra within the cranium.
Feng Fu sits at the level of the medulla oblongata, which is connected to the Root or Muladhara
Chakra. Cheng Shan is often used in conjunction with the Coccyx point at the base of the spine to
strengthen and support the Muladhara Chakra.

Di Chong or Earths Thoroughfare

While this point is similar to Kidney 1, its not in the same location. Di Chong is located at the dimple
on the bottom of the foot between the balls of the feet.Sometimes this point is called The Bubbling
Spring in TCM, which I think is appropriate since this is a major grounding point for all of those high
frequency spiritual energies you are helping to bring to the dense physical body. It can also work the
other way: Di Chong can also allow the energies of the Earth to ascend into the physical body. You
will see this point used in conjunction with Tian Man (Du 20) to form a grand triangle which is
representative of connecting Earth to Heaven.

Points on the Upper Limbs

Shenmen or Spirit Gate

You know Shenmen as Heart 7. These points are connected to the Anahata/Heart Chakra and to the
opening of this chakra at Shen Dao/Du 11. When your client is lying face down on the table and you
needle these three points you have formed an upward pointing or Heart triangle. This can open the
Heart Gates allowing energy to flow smoothly to the clients Spirit or Heart path.

Yang Qi or Yang Pool

Yang Qi (San Jiao 4) can open up all yang channels, build the Wei Qi, and unblock the pathways for

1. Dr. Sankey used to advocate removing all needles and starting over again, but in a recent seminar
(October 2013) in Boulder, Colorado he said there is no need for that if you send qi to each point in
the sequence as described.
2. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Le Phnomne Humain (1955)

Tags: EA, Esoteric Acupuncture, esoteric acupuncture points, points

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NOV 14

Esoteric Acupuncture Basics Philosophy

Esoteric Acupuncture Basics, Philosophy and Definition

by cat

What in the World is Esoteric Acupuncture (EA)?

Esoteric Acupuncture (EA) is far more than just another form of acupuncture. EA is designed to help
you heal your spirit and energetic body (or bodies) which then has positive effects on the physical
body. Since thats a really simplified answer, let me get more specific.

We live in a world that generally validates information learned from external sources. That is exoteric
knowledge. This is information you gain in school, at your church, at your job, etc. This is stuff you
can study out of a book. Its the stuff that makes our society and technology work.
Esoteric information is information that comes from inside of you. If you grew up in a Christian faith
you could equate this kind of information with that still small voice. Its that inner knowing you get
when you silence the chatter in your mind and focus on your internal world instead of your external
world. Esoteric acupuncture helps you get in touch with and develop your inner world and with the
non-physical side of who you are. Why would you want to do this? Because healing this aspect of
yourself has positive effects that ripple out to the rest of your life.

The Energetic Connection

You have probably heard the phrase Form follows thought. Dis-ease is often preceded by a long
time mental, emotional, or energetic pattern. You see this in Chinese medicine frequently anger
can cause Liver dysfunction, worry can damage the Spleen, fear can impair Kidney function, grief
can scatter the Qi of the Lung. Form following thought is not limited to those expressions in TCM.
Thought and energy patterns can affect the body in many ways. Here is one small example: I have
had a long-term habit of saying that this or that was a pain in the butt. I used that term for years . . .
until I had really bad sciatic pain that seemingly came out of nowhere. Did I program myself for that?
Maybe. Form, after all, does follow thought. One thing I know for sure Ive stopped using the term
pain in the butt! That was excessively painful (9/10) for weeks on end.

Esoteric Acupuncture focuses on the energetic aspects of ourselves, which is where we all really
come from anyway. By healing and tuning those energetic aspects we put ourselves in a state in
which the physical body can heal.

The Spiritual Connection

We are more than just our physical body. As a matter of fact, we are
layers upon layers of energy that overlap at the very center of our being. I think of this as being a bit
like a Russian Matryoshka doll which is really a series of figures that nest one inside the other. The
difference is that these energetic layers of ours are not so distinct and each layer goes all the way
through to the center. The innermost doll in this analogy represents our dense physical body, the
point of greatest overlap.

The center, our physical body, is the densest layer of who we are. As you move outward through the
energetic layers each gets less dense and finer in nature. Consciously working on these energetic
layers helps to refine and strengthen them. Dr. Mikio Sankey, the founder of Esoteric Acupuncture,
expresses this as tiers of density.

At our finest and least dense frequencies we connect to the Universe, to God, to the Ein Sof/Ayn
Soph, or whatever term you use to mean your Higher Power. While we all return to that after we die,
I think one of our primary functions here on this earth is to refine that connection now. This in turn
changes our lives, helps us find our true purpose in being here in these bodies and gives meaning to
our existence.

Each of us has blocks to finding that higher purpose. Esoteric Acupuncture patterns function like a
digital lock to open the doors to removing those blockages. It is up to us and/or our patients to walk
through the opened door and do the work of clearing the things that block us from our true selves.

Final Thoughts
Awakening and expanding your spiritual connection also awakens you to your place and purpose in
the world. As a practitioner this is important because the qi we bring to our patients gets passed on
to them on many levels. Bringing higher, finer frequencies into your life and into your clinic room/s
brings peace and confidence into your treatments, enhancing the overall effectiveness of your

Bringing this type of awareness into your life doesnt mean you get so airy-fairy that you cant keep
your feet on the ground. In fact, its just the opposite. Refining your own energy allows you to view
life from a totally different perspective and to bring the divine into your everyday world. Your clients
will notice the difference in the results they get and in your demeanor. When you are calm and
connected to your divine source you become an inspiration to them. You owe it to them, and more
importantly, you owe it to yourself.

Tags: Esoteric Acupuncture, exoteric, form follows thought, layers of density, tiers of density