Chinese Symbol Science: A Pathway to Clinical Practice

2022-09-28T14:19:47-07:00Tags: , , , , , , , , |


One question students and practitioners of Chinese medicine frequently ask Heiner Fruehauf, "How does one translate the symbolism and cosmology inherent in classical Chinese medicine into a modern clinical practice?" This article is a recent dialogue between Heiner and his colleague Bob Quinn where they discuss the role of ancient cosmology, symbolism and dreams in the context of clinical diagnosis and treatment. (August 2022)

In Memoriam: Prof. Deng Zhongjia 1943-2022

2023-02-19T14:38:17-08:00Tags: , , , , , , |


It is with great sadness that I inform you of Prof. Deng Zhongjia’s passing on February 26, 2022. Prof. Deng’s prolific work and academic philosophy was perhaps the most important influence on the process of founding the College of Classical Chinese Medicine at NUNM thirty years ago.

Born into a family of professors in Shanghai, he contracted an optic nerve inflammation as a teenager and soon thereafter was declared blind. With the help of acupuncture, Chinese herbs and Qigong he was able to miraculously recover his eyesight, an event that inspired him to pursue Chinese medicine as a career.

The Safety of Chinese Herbs: Ways to Counteract Contamination

2023-02-15T16:17:02-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

The rapid modernization of China has resulted in high levels of pollution that can contaminate the food and herbal supplies. Heiner and Laurie discuss why Chinese herbs still hold unique value in the world of medicine, and what safeguards are in place to ensure the quality of the herbs imported from the Asian mainland.

Yin Yang: A Deeper Look at the Core of Chinese Medicine System Science

2023-05-20T12:10:13-07:00Tags: , , , , , , |


Chinese medicine, at its core, is all about yin-yang. While recognition of this concept has by now entered into most non-Chinese languages, the cosmological depth and medical relevance of this most ancient of Chinese diagnostic systems remains nebulous. This two-part presentation represents Prof. Fruehauf’s approach to the concept and medical ramifications of yin-yang for an audience of Chinese medicine professionals.

Dr. Judith Boice Interviews Dr. Heiner Fruehauf

2023-02-15T15:53:09-08:00Tags: , , , , , |



This interview was recorded for a clinical mentorship class that is part of the online doctorate completion program at the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (ACTCM). Judith Boice, ND, LAc, FABNO is an adjunct faculty member at ACTCM as well as an award-winning author and teacher. is delighted to share this dialogue with you, and we extend our gratitude to Dr. Boice for making this recording available.

The Yijing (I-Ching) and the Cycles of Nature

2023-02-15T16:12:18-08:00Tags: , , , |

Since ancient times, humans have sought to understand the cycles of nature. In China, this knowledge was codified in the esoteric classic known as the Yijing—the Book of Changes. Join us as we explore the Yijing as a vivid example of how our ancestors viewed humanity’s connection to the cosmos, and how they created an intricate map of symbols that relate our existence to the larger cycles of nature.

All Disease Comes From the Heart (podcast)

2023-02-15T16:22:56-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , |

In this podcast, we discuss the ancient awareness that physical disease (dis-ease) arises when the natural flow of the Heart is restricted. This happens when we entertain false beliefs about ourselves or others, and let these prejudices dominate our inner wisdom. When our Heart is functioning freely, we experience ease and feel connected to the people and environment around us. Seen from this perspective, disease isn’t an enemy to be eradicated, but rather a sign in the material world pointing to opportunities to relax, open and live our life in a more whole and authentic way.

The Problem of Iatrogenic Disease

2023-02-15T16:27:05-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

While Western medicine can be a life-saver, it also is much more likely than natural medicine to cause serious health problems for the patient. Heiner and Laurie discuss the issue of practitioner induced illness, and explain why this problem is much more likely to result from the practice of allopathic than natural medicine.

Dao Yin: Theory and Practice (4 Parts)

2023-05-19T18:23:53-07:00Tags: , , , , , |


In these lectures, China’s premier advocate of the classical wisdom traditions in Chinese medicine explores the history, theory, and practice of Daoyin, the Daoist tradition of cultivating qi, maintaining the balance of Yin and Yang, and nourishing life as it was elucidated in the Huangdi Neijing.

Total running time: 56 mins.
Mandarin Chinese, translated into English by Heiner Fruehauf

The China Study Re-visited—with very different conclusions!

2023-02-15T16:32:11-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Health writer Denise Minger shares her insights about the meat-no meat debate. Denise Minger is exuberant and simply in search of the truth…about what the available data does and does not tell us about the nature of healthy nutrition. Following a raw food, vegan diet to become hearty and strong, Denise instead found herself becoming sicker and weaker. According to the conclusions in The China Study, she was on the diet that should prevent chronic disease. Puzzled by her experience, and a data wonk at heart, she obtained the original data upon which the book was based, and analyzed it herself. Join us for a discussion of what she found in that data, and in her subsequent quest for nutritional wisdom based in sound science rather than dogmatism or political agendas.

Telltale Signs on the Tongue

2023-02-15T16:33:23-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , , |

A skilled Chinese medicine practitioner can learn a tremendous amount about a patient’s history and current condition just by observing their tongue. What are they looking for? Heiner interviews internationally recognized expert Barbara Kirschbaum to find out. Listen as Barbara provides insights gained from her more than thirty years of experience using tongue analysis in the diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic disease, with a special focus on cancer and trauma. Barbara Kirschbaum is the author of the widely used textbooks The Atlas of Chinese Tongue Diagnosis, volumes 1 and 2, and is Director of the TCM Clinic within the Breast Cancer Center of the Jerusalem Hospital in Hamburg, Germany.

Exploring Ancient Wisdom with Classical Chinese Medicine Scholar Sabine Wilms

2023-02-15T16:41:59-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

Why ancient wisdom is so relevant for finding health and harmony in today’s world? Join Heiner and Laurie for a lively discussion with Dr. Sabine Wilms, world-renown expert on the life and works of ancient sage-scholar Sun Simiao (581-682 A.D.). Known as the “King of Medicine” (Yaowang), Sun Simiao is revered not only for his medical acumen (especially in the realm of herbal prescription), but also for his deep knowledge of how to “nourish life”, emphasizing the health of women and children.

The Triple Warmer Organ Network of Chinese Medicine

2023-02-15T16:43:24-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

This episode explores the most mysterious of the organ networks. Join us for a discussion of the elusive Triple Warmer Organ Network—perhaps the least understood of the Chinese organ systems. While not easily associated with any specific physical organ, the Triple Warmer functions are related to warmth, water metabolism, and networking throughout the body. Aspects of nervous and endocrine system functioning are likely involved.

Western Holistic Medicine: How to Truly Integrate Different Approaches to Medicine

2023-02-15T16:45:24-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Heiner and Laurie interview Dr. Paul Kalnins, a scholar practitioner with an unusually broad and deep perspective on how to truly integrate biomedical approaches with natural medicine approaches. After majoring in physics in his undergraduate studies, Dr. Kalnins attained degrees in Chinese and naturopathic medicine, and pursued additional study of the works of Goethe and Steiner. Dr. Kalnins discusses methods of cultivating one’s own perceptive abilities as a means to more directly understand what part of “the whole” is elucidated by different systems of medicine, and how these systems can be used together to optimize patient care.

The “Bladder Type” and the “Kidney Type” in Chinese Medicine

2023-02-15T16:53:17-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

The bladder is the organ function that leads to Enlightenment. Heiner discusses how ancient symbol scientists described the functioning of what is arguably the body’s most mystical and esoteric channel network, namely the Bladder.

What did real “surrender” mean to the ancient Chinese, and why did they deem it to be necessary for a person to live a fully authentic life? We’ll explore this question today, through the discussion of the characteristics attributed to the Kidney Channel Network of Chinese medicine. Ancient wisdom keepers defined the body’s root system as a type of “battery” for the storage of our core vitality, called “Source Qi”.

Natural Medicine Works for Animals, Too (2 Parts)

2023-02-15T16:55:51-08:00Tags: , , , , , , |

Our guest this week and next has a unique perspective from which to compare and integrate conventional and natural medicine. Steve Marsden was by all accounts a successful veterinarian, but felt that his toolkit of drugs and surgery was too limited to reliably achieve the kinds of outcomes that he wanted to with his furry, feathered, and scaled patients. Although initially wary of natural medicine, he was willing to investigate whether it could broaden and deepen his ability to help animals heal.

The Cosmology and Symbolism of the Twelve Organ Systems of Chinese Medicine

2023-02-15T16:58:02-08:00Tags: , , , , , |

This week, we open the door to a rich understanding that has come from more than a decade of research by a study group led by Heiner. Through excavation of the profound and timeless knowledge held in the ancient Chinese record, this team has uncovered multi-layered, symbolic meaning behind the system of 12 meridians that play a central role in Chinese medicine. Commonly thought of as pathways of qi flow in the body, these meridians, or organ systems, relate to sets of physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual functions in the microcosm of the human body.

The Empress of all the Chinese Organ Networks—the Heart

2023-02-15T17:00:54-08:00Tags: , , , , , , |

This week we explore the Heart Organ Network. The primary function associated with Heart in Chinese medicine is to move our awareness in the direction of unity, and enable us to experience true community and connection. Join us as we explore how the ancients conceived of this fundamental role in our human experience, and what their insights have to offer us in today’s increasingly alienating world.

Why Classical Chinese Medicine is Relevant Today

2023-02-15T17:02:15-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , |

Co-host Laurie Regan interviews Heiner Fruehauf to learn about the basic principles of classical Chinese medicine, and why this ancient knowledge still holds so much relevance for us today. Many ancient cultures had the practical realization that everything that exists is an inseparable mix of energy and matter, and is interconnected with everything else. Nothing is coincidence. In the realm of medicine, this means that every illness has meaning, and every symptom is a physical marker for the energy and consciousness that forms it. We can learn to read and interpret symptoms to understand the root cause of illness and find true solutions for restoring health.

The Inspiring Life Story of Chinese Qigong Master Wang Qingyu (2 Parts)

2023-02-15T16:49:21-08:00Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

In this two-part podcast, Laurie narrates and Heiner translates the biographical story of master Wang Qingyu. The story begins with Master Wang’s birth, literally on a battlefield during the Japanese invasion of China. Especially touching are his remembrances of his beloved Daoist teacher, Li Jie, a legendary Daoist hermit who taught young Wang the real value of cultivation practices–to know one’s own heart and become a truly good person.

Chinese Medicine In Crisis: Science, Politics, and the Making of “TCM”

2022-09-07T11:12:32-07:00Tags: , , , , , , , |


This article is based on the conviction that the traditional art of Oriental medicine is dying—both in mainland China, home of the mother trunk of the field, and consequently overseas where branches of the tree are trying to grow. It may be an anachronistic piece, written at a time when TCM administrators around the world are celebrating major advances in the field, such as increasing numbers of students, practitioners, patients, colleges, universities, and hospitals, which all appear to reflect a booming state of Oriental medicine.

On the Relationship Between Medicine and Philosophy

2022-09-07T11:15:22-07:00Tags: , , , , , , , |

BY ZHANG XICHUN (1860-1933)

Zhang Xichun (1860-1933) is one of China's great scholar-physicians. He is primarily remembered for his prominent role in spearheading the early movement of Chinese-Western medicine integration during the first three decades of this century. The depth of his knowledge and the broad range of his activities, moreover, distinguish him as one of the last of the classical cast of renaissance physicians.

Reflections on the Relationship of Traditional Wisdom, Precision, and Clinical Efficacy in the Herbal Science of Chinese Medicine (2 Parts)

2021-11-08T13:27:48-08:00Tags: , , , , , , |

National University of Natural Medicine,
College of Classical Chinese Medicine

This essay represents Heiner’s contribution to 2011’s Fuyang suntan (Discussion Forum on Supporting the Yang), China’s premier conference dedicated to upholding the roots of classical Chinese medicine. He notes the enormous transformative potential that natural medicine holds in the precarious times we live in, and underscores the importance of clinical efficacy in the process of promoting our medicine. In particular, he points out the importance of the “technological” details of the clinical encounter in Chinese medicine, which have been the basis for optimum clinical results in the past. In Part 2, he shares some aspects of his personal journey toward mastering the details of precise herb prescribing.


The Essence of Chinese Medicine

2023-02-15T17:12:27-08:00Tags: , , , , , , |

WU SHENG'AN is proud to announce that one of Northern China’s most pre-eminent folk physicians has become a permanent advisor to our online family. Dr. Wu Sheng’an is a classically trained master physician who still combines many traditional skills that are virtually impossible to find in one person in modern-day China: chrono-acupuncturist, wildcrafter and processor of medicinal plants, internal medicine expert specializing in difficult and recalcitrant diseases, Taiji master, and active proponent of Sun Simiao’s medical ethics.

Direct Transmission: Quest for the Heart in Classical Chinese Medicine

2023-02-15T17:13:51-08:00Tags: , , , , |


Direct Transmission shares the faces and stories of several remarkable practitioners of classical Chinese medicine, people who are a living link to the treasures of the past. It is our hope that the nature of this unprecedented material, woven of colorful and emotionally moving stories, interviews, and treatment sessions, will inspire expanded interest in, and understanding of, the profound value of traditional knowledge in general, and classical Chinese medicine in particular.

Gems from a Classical Chinese Medicine Pulse Master – Dr. Zeng Rongxiu (1927-2012)

2023-02-15T17:15:36-08:00Tags: , , , |


It is with great sorrow that we announce the passing of Dr. Zeng Rongxiu. Dr. Zeng was the last living disciple of the great Shanghan pulse master Dr. Tian Heming. During his long career as an internal medicine doctor in Chengdu, he synthesized a highly effective system of constitutional approaches to chronic illness. To celebrate Dr. Zeng’s life and legacy with you, is making available one of Dr. Zeng’s last public teaching sessions, in which he synthesizes his life-long insights on pulse diagnosis.

The Importance of Classical Chinese Medicine in Modern Times

2023-02-15T17:24:30-08:00Tags: , , , |


In this keynote speech at a recent Chinese medicine conference in Poland, Heiner Fruehauf spoke about the ancient core concepts of this dynamic medicine, and how utilizing the medicine in its intended classical forms (as a fully realized, potent system of medicine) is of great importance at a time when Western medicine and modern TCM are encountering limitations in treating the complex diseases of our time.

Preserving the Whole

2023-05-20T12:13:12-07:00Tags: , , |


Honored in China as one of the “four elders of Chinese Medicine,” Prof. Deng discusses the power of the classical approach to Chinese Medicine. In this presentation, he shares valuable philosophical insights into this system’s emphasis on function, over structure, and discusses specific relevant clinical examples from his many years as a practitioner and teacher of this medicine.

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