Two weeks ago – September 28th – was the birthday of the Chinese philosopher Kong Zi or Confucius (551 – 479 BC). Famous for his teachings about personal morality Confucius saw harmony in the family – and to a larger extent in the society – as fundamental. We have just come back from a Master trip in Jinan and were able to visit the Temple of Confucius in Qufu in the Shandong Province. An enormous and beautifully set up complex of numerous temples and hundreds of years old trees. Impressive! We also visited the Jinan Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the related museum of TCM. The hospital daily attracts thousands of patients so doctors normally treat 80 to 100 patients a day. At the entrance two huge wall paintings act as a daily reminder to work in the spirit of the legendary Chinese doctor Sun Si Miao who wrote: “A Great Physician should not pay attention to status, wealth or age; neither should he question whether the particular person is attractive or unattractive, whether he is an enemy or friend, whether he is a Chinese or a foreigner, or finally, whether he is uneducated or educated. He should meet everyone on equal grounds. He should always act as if he were thinking of his close relatives.”
It was so nice to see that despite all the hustle and bustle in the hospital the doctors acted without rushing and made their time to help patients. Truly amazing work! Later we also visited the museum of TCM close by the university. The most astonishing work was the university exams for Chinese Medicine dating back to the Ming dynasty (sixteenth century). A student of Traditional Chinese Medicine had to remember all the TCM classics, know hundreds of herbal formulas as well as acupuncture points by heart. As 21-century TCM-practioners we stand in a long tradition of deep study and understanding: a journey that never ends!