Two to Go (Buffy, Season 6, Episode 21)


As the Sccobies try to stop Willow and save the remaining two ‘Super Villains’ (who were placed in a jail cell after the aborted jetpack attempt in Episode 19), Xander comments that he’s seeing all the dark sides of people lately. Meanwhile, Willow drains herself of magic, goes to Rack for a ‘tune up’, kills him, and gets drugged out on magic. She also cannot see anything else since Tara’s death.  As she is about to finish off her friends, she gets blasted by a returning Giles.  A small trickle of blood leaks from her nose from that blast.

This is a fairly difficult episode to diagnose, and I don’t really have an acupuncture treatment for nosebleeds.  (Herbally, just roll up a fresh perilla leaf and insert it into the bleeding nostril.)  However, the Arm Yang Ming sinew vessel treats an inability of the neck to turn right or left to see.  I will therefore use it to treat both Xander and Willow (if one can get to her), in an attempt to resolve their  inability to see aught else, that is, to turn the head to see other options.  The Arm Yang Ming sinew symptoms differ from the Foot Tai Yang sinew indications in that the latter involves an inability to move either left or right, while the former involves the issue of sight.

The Arm Yang Ming sinew vessel goes up along the front of the neck, and in this case, opening the orifices of the neck is of supreme importance.  The SCM, scalenes, levator scapula, and deep front line should all be massaged gently, to loosen them up and engage the parasympathetic nervous system.  I might forgo cupping or doing gua sha on Du-4 and Du-14 in this case, and try to stimulate the areas with tui na or acupressure while the patient is in a supine position.  Surprise needling with a hot needle is indicated for the inability to turn the head to see, but okyu or thread moxa along tender points of the vessel works well, too.  LI-18 in particular may be tender, as well as points around the shoulder, LI-10 and LI-11.  The treatment can close either by okyu at LI-1 or following that, by needling LI-2, to keep the illness from going internally.  In that case, I would needle LI-2, and do cone moxa at ST-9 or ST-5, with a needle at ST-12 (the point at which illnesses truly go interior into the body).

For herbal medicine, Gou Qi Zi, goji berries, help a person look at their own shadow and not recoil.  That capacity must be brought to the surface, to the wei qi level, and so I would combine the Gou Qi Zi with Ju Hua, Chrysanthemum, which is said to benefit the eyesight, in addition to releasing the exterior.  In other words, Ju Hua not only moves wei qi, it draws the wei qi up and out from BL-1.  Because it goes to both the Lung and Liver, its influence over the proper movement of we qi is particularly effective.  Sang Ye, which aids in self-transformation, is another exterior releasing herb which goes to the Lung and Liver.  However, if we want to move the wei qi into the Yang Ming sinew vessels, Xin Yi Hua makes an effective envoy.  As the primary herb to treat runny nose, it not only opens the orifices through its acridity, freeing up perception, it also goes to where the arm and foot yang ming channels meet, namely, the nose.  The trajectory of both those channels passes along the front of the throat, and in combination with other exterior releasing herbs, will help free up those muscles.  (Some herbalists may want to add Mu Zei or Ge Gen, both of which release the muscle layer, for added efficacy in a strictly muscular case of inability to turn the neck to see.)

As always, these posts are for entertainment and educational purposes only.  If you or a loved one are so focused on one thing that you cannot see other options, or if your neck has seized up due to a cold draft, please see a qualified practitioner.

Happy Slayage!

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