22.02.2014 Eastern Healing

The Art of Jin Shin Jyutsu

Oriental practitioner Olivier LeJus explores an ancient method of self healing

As an acupuncturist, I often give my patients exercises to supplement their treatments between appointments. Until recently my approach had been to demonstrate a few basic acupuncture points they could stimulate in their own time with acupressure.

That was until I discovered a remarkable book called The Touch of Healing by Mary Burmeister dedicated to the ancient healing art of Jin Shin Jyutsu. This book changed my approach to treatments, and I would like to give you an insight on this remarkable and very simple technique, and maybe encourage you to practise it on yourself and others.

The technique of Jin Shin Jyutsu was discovered in the beginning of the 20th century by a Japanese man of the name of Jiro Murai. According to the legend, Muria was very fond of food until he become very ill at the age of 26. After being told that his condition was terminal, he made a decision to spend a week in the mountain, fasting, meditating and practising various finger exercises of his own. On the seventh day of his retreat, he experienced a sensation of intense heat all over his body, and when the heat subsided, he discovered that his illness had been cured.

His experience led him to dedicate his life to becoming a healer, and to develop his new healing art, which he named Jin Shin Jyutsu. The name is often translated as "The art of the creator through the person of compassion". With his new technique, he achieved remarkable results in his own country.

Years later, he selected a Japanese American woman named Mary Burmeister to become his student and to help him spread his healing practice around the world. Today, these same techniques are being taught to patients suffering from cancer and cardiac diseases in numerous American hospitals.

Jin Shin Jyutsu is based on the concept of a life energy circulating throughout the universe and the human body at various levels of intensity. This energy travels down the front of the body and up the back in a continuous oval pattern. This creates a complementary relationship between the upper and lower body, as well as between the front and back of the body. Thus, when a symptom of illness is manifested above the waist, the origin of the dysfunction will be found in the lower part of the body, and vice versa.

Obstructions to this energy flow are created by what are called "attitudes", meaning such negative emotional patterns as anxiety, fear, sadness, anger and pretence. There are 26 different sites called safety energy locks on each side of the body which act as circuit breakers to protect the body when the flow of energy has been interrupted. Once a safety lock is activated, a symptom is manifested on the corresponding part of the body. The aim of Jin shin Jyutsu is to train our hands to act as jumper cables to release the energy that has been blocked.

Mary Burmeister believes we can all train ourselves to channel that universal life energy through our own hands to help ourselves and others. As she explains, "Jin Shin Jyutsu can be used in conjunction with conventional medicine to help facilitate the healing process.. ."

According to the author, there are six different levels of energy which affect the human body and spirit. Each depth is responsible for the harmonious functioning of a specific organ and its associated emotion.

In Jin Shin Jyutsu, when one of these specific "attitudes" becomes predominant, the energy flow and organ function that is governed at that level is compromised. Each of our fingers is responsible for harmonising a particular channel. To release a blockage, we simply need to apply pressure on the specific finger where that energy is being obstructed.

To give an example, the energy associated with our digestive system circulates to the tip of the thumb. The organs are the spleen and the stomach, and the attitude is worry. To improve our digestion, we simply need to place both our hands in front of us facing palm down, then insert our left thumb into the palm of the right hand, and gently apply pressure with the right thumb and index finger to the base of the left thumb for a few minutes until we feel a gentle pulse flowing from to the tip of the fingers. This is a sign that the blocked energy is now circulating from one hand to the other. We can repeat the same procedure with the other hand.

Personally, I find it easier to feel the rhythmic pulsation when I concentrate my attention and breathing to the fingers which are being stimulated. As the therapeutic effects are cumulative, practising just a few minutes daily after every meal will help eliminate bloating, and relieve constipation.

Next month, we will look at other simple Jin Shin Jyutsu techniques which can be used as an adjunct to other conventional methods of treatments when First Aid is needed.

Olivier Lejus MHSC.BHSc. is a registered acupuncturist practising in Sydney

Olivier Lejus

Olivier Lejus BHSc.MHSc. is a registered acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist practising in Sydney. A former casual university lecturer and tutor in Oriental medicine with over 15 years experience in clinical practice, Olivier specialises in Japanese- style acupuncture for the treatment of male and female infertility, migraine, pain, and insomnia.www.olejusacupuncture.com