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  • Cat Calhoun

Why the References Don't Always Agree

Updated: Jun 17, 2019

Have you noticed this? If you look at several Master Tung references you might find point location that is fairly consistent across the board, but sometimes there are differences. You might also find points listed in one book that aren't in another.


If you are an acupuncture student that can be very frustrating because you might be looking for consistent answers. I know how you feel. But why is this?


In a nutshell, it's because acupuncture was originally a series of family systems. People used what worked. But the Cultural Revolution largely killed those systems off (literally), leaving no one left standing but the herbalists. When the Communist Party decided they needed acupuncturists after all there were none, so the herbalist gleaned through the classics and invented "Traditional" Chinese Medicine. That's what you learn in school and what your boards are based on because it is consistent, though not as effective as it could be.


Master Tung's system was a family system. Those he taught use the points much like families would - use what works, modifying as needed. Even Master Tung changed his approach during his life, using channel diagnosis and family points exclusively early on and then later in life combining Tung points, channel balancing and diagnosis, and "TCM" points.


Don't let any of this deter you! Do likewise. Find a teacher who "speaks" to you and learn what they have to tell you. Learn from books and teachers at first, use the points intelligently with your patients, note what works well for you and what doesn't, and let experience teach you when to modify as needed.


There are some great teachers out there for Master Tung's system. Here are just a few I've learned from:


I completely, absolutely, and without reservation, recommend e-Lotus' Master Tung Certification path for a truly excellent online method of learning about Master Tung's acupuncture. I've never regretted taking their classes. U.S. based practitioners, you can also get your CEU credits this way!


Also, you will notice that there is a free 1 hour webinar every week. That's how I got really hooked on Tung's Points. I took several of Dr. Robert Chu's classes on Master Tung acupuncture and it made so much sense. Now I "eat" all of the classes I can when he teaches them.