Five Stars and Two Thumbs Up!,
This review is from: Dao of Chinese Medicine: Understanding an Ancient Healing Art (Hardcover)Wow! What a tour de force...scholarship, readability and impact! Someone finally makes acupuncture and Chinese Medicine REAL! If this were widely read, the medical profession would be more likely to give Chinese medicine the respect it deserves and the public would be even more enthusiastic about it. The western medical profession has largely patronized Chinese Medicine. The Dao of Chinese Medicine makes a strong case that this dismissal of Chinese medicine is misguided, and based upon flawed interpretations. Western writers early on misunderstood the historical origins of Chinese medicine and popularised the idea of an unknown "energy" coursing through imaginary "meridians". Dr. Donald Kendall in the Dao of Chinese Medicine sets the record straight in this refreshing book.
Dr. Kendall has long been respected in the international acupuncture community for his lucid explanation of the physiological mechanisms of acupuncture and for his attempts to bring the educational standards of the western medical model to the profession. Kendall is a scholar who reads the ancient texts in the original Chinese, and a highly successful Chinese Medicine practitioner and teacher. In the Dao of Chinese Medicine, he extends his reach to the full scope of Chinese medical theory and practice. Kendall has the gift the late Isaac Asimov had of making the complex and esoteric understandable. Primarily a textbook for western and Chinese medical students and doctors, it will also find an audience with healthcare decision makers and the public. Those who are inspired by a vision of a healthcare system integrating the best of conventional and traditional medical systems, will find their spirits soaring after reading Kendall's book. Medical doctors, academic and clinical researchers and medical practitioners of every stripe will feel far more confident about the rationale and validity of Chinese Medicine.
This is an academic book but it is also a great story. Kendall's documentation is meticulous and his style is engaging. The Dao of Chinese Medicine reveals an ancient medical system that stands up well to scientific scrutiny. Chinese medicine comes off as the equal of western medicine in many respects, and as its superior in other respects, particularly in its emphasis on prevention through attention to building immune function. Kendall traces the development of Chinese medicine from its roots in physiological studies including post-mortem dissections. This lead to a number of pioneering medical "firsts" including detailed descriptions of the cardiovascular system, the original discovery of blood circulation, the earliest descriptions of the immune system, information about the spinal cord, sensory and motor nerves, and the organization of the musculoskeletal system.
William Harvey's explanation of blood circulation in 1628 is considered the greatest single event in Western medicine. His work led to an era of scientific exploration in medicine and to the rejection of the mistaken ideas of Greek and medieval medicine embodied by Hippocrates and Galen. The fact that Chinese physicians made this discovery two millennia before Harvey does not diminish Harvey's extraordinary breakthrough, but it does put it in historical context.
The Dao of Chinese Medicine repudiates the notion that Chinese medicine is inscrutable, nonsensical or illogical. Kendall accurately translates the original source material and crosschecks it against contemporary scientific research, and so unveils the genius of the ancient Chinese physicians.
HMO administrators, clinical directors, and medical doctors now have the ability to appreciate the expanded range of valid options available for patient care. Other implications are the enhancement of patient choice and reduced healthcare costs, as safe, non-invasive, drugless alternative modalities of Chinese medicine can be justifiably and responsibly selected where they are appropriate. Students of Chinese medicine have a way to explain what they do in terms accepted by the consensus reality and to achieve more consistent and repeatable results through a deeper understanding of how the body and its internal and external aspects interact. The health-conscious public now has available a definitive source for gaining better understanding a medical system which may significantly improve the quality of their lives.
This groundbreaking book serves the international community well and enhances the concept of an integrative "world medicine". Five stars and two thumbs up!
Steve Paine, OMD
(3 customer reviews)
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