Never Leave Me (Buffy, Season 7, Episode 9)

Now that Spike has taken up residence in the Summers’ household, the Scoobies debate what to do with him.  Anya suggests putting something sharp through Spike’s chest to deal with his sleeper-side.  Buffy, however, decided to take a few days off work, so Dawn lets Principal Robin know that Buffy won’t be in, giving as the excuse what TCM would call ‘sudden turmoil disorder’, or as Dawn said Buffy’s words literally were: ‘I have stuff coming out both ends’.

Meanwhile, the First, in the form of Jonathan, appears to Andrew, requesting more blood to open the seal.  Andrew is having regrets at killing his best friend, but Jonathan/ the First tries to reassure Andrew:  Jonathan has become one with hope and light, but without ulcers.  To reference Anya’s solution for Spike, ulcers sometimes feel like a sharp stab in the chest.

Treating ulcers with Channel Divergences will not be the topic of today’s post.  Instead, has anyone ever noticed Anya’s particular mannerisms?  Ever notice that when she’s human she has more wind-tremours than when she’s a demon?  Is this because Liver-anger can be channeled more successfully through a demonic jing-essence-body than a human one?  Regardless, both Anya’s facial tics and Buffy’s sudden turmoil disorder can be treated through the Bladder Channel Divergence.

The CDs treat form, not function, so what ‘form’ is being treated?  With regard to facial tics, the form is one of constancy.  A facial tremour is the inability of the form to hold itself in a consolidated manner.  Likewise with sudden turmoil:  diarrhea and vomiting are clearly representative of the body’s inability to consolidate what it has taken in.  The Bladder CD excels at consolidating form, in part because as the first of the Channel Divergence sequence, it draws on the body’s jing to contain pathogenic influences (the Bladder CD can also transform jing into wei qi to expel wind from the body through its ability to hold and consolidate yang qi).  Not retaining essence through over-sweating, leaking fluids and stool, or a consumption of essence (including De, or ‘virtue’, in Han and pre-Han dynasty HuangLao thought) are signs that the Bladder CD may be involved in the pathophysiology of a patient.

How does the Bladder Channel Divergence apply these functions physiologically, as revealed by the channel trajectory?

The Bladder Channel divergence begins at BL-40, the Doorway to the Earth point and first Confluence of the Channel Divergences, bringing together the Bladder and Kidney channels.  As mentioned earlier, this point connects to BL-23 and Ming Men, allowing the channel clear access to the jing-storing Kidneys.  The point also pushes wei qi to the gluteus, and from BL-30, the channel goes to BL-36.

The area of the body around BL-36 is a primary holding area for latency.  It stores trauma, whose release can be facilitated by gua sha or through needling GB-27.  Trauma homes in here for several reasons.  On the one hand, the point controls the body’s ability to discharge via the bowels:  trauma seeking an exit.  On the other hand, it supports the spleen’s ability to ascend qi, to move things back up:  trauma seeking integration.  In a way, this is the point where pre-natal qi as jing meets post-natal qi, where the ‘template’ for forming the body meets the components which need to be assembled.

From BL-36, the trajectory goes directly to the Doorways of the Earth points at Du-1, Du-4, and CV-4. These points were all discussed in the previous post.  Du-1 relates to consolidation and the emotional build-up of individuation; Du-4 to the blueprint of life and access to jing as well as to the Dai Mai (again, in an attempt to expel the pathogen). CV-4 relates to the balance of yin and yang in the body, and can draw up more primal resources to contain the pathogen, or to transform yin into wei to expel the pathogen.

From CV-4, the channel moves downwards, encountering CV-3 (top of pubic hair margin, technically), then penetrating the sacral liao at BL-32. CV-3 is the mu point of the Bladder organ (CV-4 is the mu point of the other TaiYang organ, the Small Intestine), and BL-32 is associated with hormonal balance in the body (the ye-thick fluids of the Small Intestine).  Both points treat urinary difficulty and incontinence, seminal emission, and pain in the lower trunk.  From the sacrum, the channel moves upward to connect with BL-28 (the shu transport point of the Bladder Organ).

From the cycle beginning at the Bladder Mu and moving to the Bladder Shu points, the channel then traverses the Hua Tuo points. The Hua Tuo points in particular are the terrain of wei qi; but as they are associated with biomedical nerve-roots, they also have an effect on how jing-qi is distributed to organs.  Pathophysiologically, they can be thought of as diverting wind to an organ, and then, to make the wind and cold latent, the Hua Tuo are the points through which the body sends jing to the organ in question.  The development of masses and tumours in those organs,or hormone disruption more generally, can both be explained in this manner.

At Du-11 (Shen Way), the channel wraps through BL-15 (HT shu point) and BL-44 (Door to the Shen) to CV-17 (mu point of the Pericardium) to form the external Bao Mai and connect with the Heart.  If jing has begun to degrade in phlegm, which is one way to think of cholesterol in the blood, the channel will utilise the Heart to ‘vapourise’ (Am: vaporize) the phlegm.  Psychologically, this wrapping of the vessel is the jing meeting the shen to form jingshen before it moves to the Sea of Marrow.

From CV-17, the channel goes to BL-10, the Window to the Sky point and upper confluence of the BL-KD Channel Divergence.  Some texts list the channel as stopping here; others theorise that it moves to the brain and from there to BL-1.  BL-10, in the context of the Bladder Channel Divergence, has the ability to descend excess yang in the head and draw it to the chest, to the most yang of the solid organs, the Heart.  BL-1, as one of the upper orifices, as the ability to release wind from the body.

Treatment and point selection vary by case, but all would include BL-40 and either BL-10 or BL-1.  In Buffy’s case, the points selected would focus on consolidating:  BL-36, CV-3 or Du-1 for diarrhea; CV-17 for vomiting.  Needles would be inserted in a simple ascending order:  bilaterally, beginning with BL-40, angled towards the head.  Needle technique would be deep-shallow-deep, with vibration at each depth.

In Anya’s case, the treatment goals are to expel the wind, so a looping order would be called for.  Points would be selected based on their ability to transform jing into wei or yang qi.  The needles on one side would be angled upwards until BL-10, whose needle would point to the paired BL-10 point on the other side of the body.  The other side of the body would be needled with needles angled towards the feet.  Finally, the jing well point of the Bladder would be needled.  Begin on the side of the body which has pain, needle the jing well point of the side which does not have pain or tics.

The herbal formula associated with this Channel Divergence is Da Cheng Qi Tang.  In Anya’s case, I would add Chi Shao, to move blood and expel wind, and increase the dosage of Hou Po, for a similar reason.

As always, these posts are for educational and entertainment purposes only.  If you or a loved one are suffering from sudden turmoil disorder, please see a qualified practitioner.

Happy Slayage!