It was a really fulfilling experience.

My time at Kakikofu has sadly come to an end. It was a truly enriching experience. Over the last five weeks my view of fundamental aspects of healthy living, like our, our body, what health means, our emotions and our relation to the environment has shifted. While I have shared such learnings in previous reflections, in this week’s reflection I would like to share what I noticed from my two Sensei’s approach to treatment.

All health practitioners have an approach to providing care and treatment to their clients. The beautiful thing I noticed is how much Hiroshi Sensei and Kaori Sensei embody the practice of Kampo in their own lives. From observing Kaori Sensei and Hiroshi Sensei intermittently stretch, look for ancient Kampo texts to read, share practices about Qigong, and prepare obento’s and teas inspired by Kampo theory, I found it interesting to see their daily and direct experience with Kampo. It appeared therefore that Kampo really enables a practitioner to have their own relationship with the treatment, both in and out of the clinic. I feel that this does not come into play as much in the Western, biomedical model of treatment where there is less focus on prevention and lifestyle habits. It made me reflect; how often are we given the space to discover ways to integrate our field of study into our own lives?

I also came to grasp more of Kakikofu’s approach when doing some translation at the clinic.
The deep philosophy underlying this Traditional medicine modality was evident in many ways including:
The importance of the practitioner continually practicing self-observation
The practitioner becoming increasingly aware of the five senses, their reflexes, reactions as well as subtleties like mind, spirit, and Chi. In doing so they are able to be more present and sensitive to the needs of the client.
Striving to integrate everything-knowledge, experience, theory, and technique-together while reducing attachments and the influence of our ego (concept of ‘Shuhari’).
Therefore part of being able to support clients is this value on the continual growth of the practioner.

Lastly, another vital aspect of the treatment provided is that it is linked to a mission. Hiroshi Sensei and Kaori Sensei want to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and the creation of a more peaceful word where people from all backgrounds can access quality medical care, which includes access to the Wisdom of Kampo Medicine. I was a recipient of this spirit of generous giving as they graciously allowed me to learn from them for 5 weeks. They took me in, and shared their knowledge, wisdom and experience. While I was there, some French students and a Canadian Student came to learn, as well as some Korean students that will also be arriving soon.
The spirit of Kakikofu is one of true individual and collective growth. My heart is filled with gratitude for this experience and I hope more people around the world can experience the wonders of Kampo, and the ways Hiroshi Sensei and Kaori Sensei bring it to life.

I wanted to also say thank you to all the clients who generously allowed me to observe their sessions.