Corona Virus

A Formula to Keep in your Pocket – You Could Save a Life

When I take the train from my home area to New York City, I like to sit by the window and watch the changing scenery.  Along the way, there are large tracts of the marshland filled with all manner of birds.  Much of this marsh is made up of phragmites reeds.  The way the bend in the wind is oceanic and beautiful.  These reeds and their rhizomes are a medicinal herb.  The part of the reed growing out of the water is called Wei Jing and the rhizome is called Lu Gen.  Since Wei Jing is meant to be used fresh, often the dried rhizome is used in its place.  Zhang Zhong-Jing named a formula after this herb called Wei Jing Tang.  Today, I will be giving a free lecture on this potentially life-saving formula, that has even more relevance during the time of the coronavirus.

Wei Jing Tang was originally written down by Sun Si-Miao in his Bei Ji Qian Jin Yao Fang,  Essential Formulas Worth a Thousand Pieces of Gold.  It is now in the Song Dynasty Compilation of the Jin Gui Yao Lue, Chapter 7, Lung Wilt, Lung Welling Abscess, Cough, and Ascending Qi.  It is in the Lung Welling Abscess section of Chapter […]

By |2020-04-29T05:17:01-07:00April 29th, 2020|Classic Formulas, Corona Virus|0 Comments

Hu Xi-Shu, Jing Fang Doctor, on Wen Bing

Recently I was speaking to my friend and teacher, Andy Ellis about Wen Bing.  He told me about a book I had not heard of.  This text is by the late Dr. Hu Xi-Shu called

Understanding Warm Disease through Six Channel Differentiation of Patterns

Below is my translation of his introduction to the text with commentary. (Thank you to Sabine Wilms for helping me with the translation). This is also meant to give an introduction to two talks that are happening today in regard to working with people who are suffering from The Virus:  Caroline Radice is teaching on Huo Xiang Zheng Qi Tang.(12:00 pm EST) I am speaking on San Ren Tang and Huo Po Xia Ling Tang.  (3pm EST)

Dr. Hu writes:

For the purpose of elucidating the rules of transformation and the diagnostic principles of “10,000 diseases, one origin” Zhang Zhong-Jing wrote the Shang Han Lun.  Thereby making clear the range of tools.  (showing us our options) Therefore, I often say, “The treatment method of 10,000 diseases is already exhaustively covered in the single book, the Shang Han Lun; and yet, the treatment formulas for the 10,000 diseases , verily are not complete within this single text.

Dr. Hu is telling us plainly that, […]

Ma Huang and Gui Zhi in the time of Covid

I am now introducing Sally Rappaport’s Talk: which will be on Monday, April 6 at 12 noon, EST.  As a follow-up to my lecture from last Friday, April 3, White Pine Institute and the Shen Nong Society, with the generous help of Healthy Seminars, are offering a series of classes on the formulas mentioned in the original lecture. This free series is taught by a group of classical herbalists who are all approaching the crisis with similar foundational principles as discussed in the lecture.  These talks are free and are designed to help Chinese herbal practitioners hone their skills in working with the ill patients that come to you.  This is the point of view and methods we are using and having great results with.  Our group is in the process of gathering our clinical results.  We will keep you posted!

Sally will be giving a foundational talk on Ma Huang Tang and Gui Zhi Tang, As You’ve Never Heard Before.  Though these particular formulas will not be appropriate for most presentations of Covid-19, understanding them as Sally is teaching them, is key to understanding the logic behind other very key formulas.  I encourage all practitioners who are facing patients with coronavirus to register for this free lecture.  

There is […]

Classical Chinese Herbal Principles in Action in Response to Covid-19: Free Talk

Good Morning!

Today, at 12:30 EST (9:30 am PST) I’ll be giving a free, online talk called Classical Chinese Herbal Principles in Action in Response to Covid-19.  You can register free at this link:

This lecture discusses the foundational principles a group of us are grounding ourselves in as we work with patients with the coronavirus.  The treatments that follow from these principles are proving to be very helpful for those who are quite ill.  This talk will be followed by a series of talks that go into the specifics about the formulas we are using, when and why.

After the talk, the recording will be available for 48 hours.

I hope you can make it!


Coronavirus: Does the Exterior Still Need Resolving?

In my last post, I expressed why it is so important to know if the exterior still needs resolving and I promised to let you know how I evaluate this.

Since then, a group of us are starting to work collectively sharing and helping each other with our Covid cases and finding our methods to be working very well.  Without exception so far, all cases have turned for the better instead of getting worse.  The principles are sound.  This is very exciting.

I’ll be giving a free lecture on the principles I am referring to on Friday, April 3, at 1 pm EST.  Here is a link to register for this lecture:  A group of us are also planning to follow-up with a series of classes about the formula patterns we are finding especially useful.

When someone comes in with an acute upper respiratory issue that has clearly gotten stuck in their chest and is getting hotter and more stuck every hour, it may be easy to think that you just need to clear heat from the lungs.  However, as I discussed in the last post, it is super important to know if the exterior still needs to be resolved as well, before simply using cooling herbs, especially bitter cold herbs.

There are two important […]

Shang Han vs Wen Bing? What is Shang Han Lun Theory?

Shang Han Lun

Beware: Long Post, hopefully interesting and helpful!

To be able to treat the manifestations of Covid-19, one must understand, not just the nature of how a virus manifests in the body but also how the body works to process it and the outside world in general.  In a previous post, I discussed the two vectors that are involved with the way an illness like Covid 19 manifests in the body and the idea of using herbs to help the body process it.  I described health and a healthy immune system not as a function of being able to keep things or get things out, but as a function of being permeable and able to be in relationship with and able to process the things that come in from the outside world.  For me, the physiology that is inherently described within the Shang Han Lun is key to being able to help a body process the world in general and a virus in particular.

I want to start this multi-post discussion with transparency as to my own bias.  We all have a particular way of viewing the way the body works and how […]

The In-between Time

Okay, what if I am starting to feel that I am coming down with something and am feeling like I’m getting very sick?  What do I do?  The message we are all getting is to stay home in isolation until or unless our symptoms become critical.  In the main media, there is not much offered as to how to care for each other when we are in the in-between time of sick but not critical.

Although I know Chinese herbal medicine can be helpful to people before you are sick and in the critical period, it is this in-between time that is super important for us Chinese herbalists now.  We have the possibility of preventing the illness from becoming critical and of relieving a tremendous amount of suffering.  We may have the skill to keep people off of respirators and out of hospitals.

However, before talking about how we might best treat this issue as our patients come down with it (which I’ll do in the next posts), I’d like to offer a note of caution: […]

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