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Getting to the heart of things.

Exploring xin/shin [] (heart) and shen/shin [] (spirit) in traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM). Part 1 of the serie Shen – Heart – Qi – Jing: a lecture series by Stephen Birch

Date Time Subject Cost per webinar Cost series Nascholingspunten
4 February 19.30 – 21.00 Heart and Spirit € 35,- € 85,- 2
4 March 19.30 – 21.00 Ki € 35,- € 85,- 2
1 April 19.30 – 21.00 Essence € 35,- € 85,- 2
13 May* 19.30 – 21.00 Heart and Spirit € 35,- € 85,- 2

* Repeat of webinar 4 February.



Contents of this Masterclass

When we study TEAM practice systems like Shiatsu, acupuncture, TCM, we learn about the ‘heart’ and ‘spirit’. These are both terms that are somewhat familiar to us since we have studied basic biology and most of us have had some religious education, they are also familiar as cultural concepts where these ideas are given broader uses and meanings. When we learn TEAM practice systems we might tend to assume that the TEAM use of these terms is similar to what we have grown up with and we may tend to assume that they have uniform meaning and understanding within the field of TEAM.  This brief lecture will explore the fact that neither of these assumptions are correct or very helpful.

The lecture will compare and contrast understanding and uses of heart (xin) and spirit (shen) in patterns of diagnosis in TCM (acupuncture/herbs) and in Japanese meridian therapy (acupuncture). To help with this the lecture will explore the meanings and uses of both terms in the premedical and early TEAM medical literatures in China. It will explore how twentieth century TCM and twentieth century Meridian Therapy use and understand these terms, examining different understanding in the two countries. This will include exploration of issues of history, cultural exchange, cultural understanding, translation problems and conceptual and clinical practice differences between herbal medicine and acupuncture. We will see that TCM and Meridian Therapy have equally valid completely different understandings and uses of these two important concepts.

For Whom?

This masterclass is open for graduated shiatsu therapists and acupunturists.

Practical information

Online webinar. The link for the webinar will be sent to you after registration.
The online environment works best with Google Chrome or Firefox.


Stephen Birch PhD, (acupuncture practitioner, teacher, scholar, researcher)