To the editors:

Thank you for profiling me as a teacher of the Healing Tao in your September 27 issue. Since the article’s publication I’ve gotten positive feedback but much of it is a request for clarification because many people felt they did not have a clear idea of what Taoism or the Healing Tao is, nor what it is I do as an instructor.

Taoism is the 5000+ year old foundation of Chinese philosophy, science, and medicine. One of the basic principles of Taoism is the view that health, rejuvenation, and spiritual attainment can be achieved thru living in harmony with nature. In the Taoist view, harmony and balance are essential for health. The body is seen as a whole system; therefore stress or injury to one organ or gland weakens the entire body. Illness is caused by a blockage of energy. Too much or too little energy in one part of the body results in disease in that part while stressing the entire body. As a modern expression of ancient Taoist techniques, the Healing Tao teaches us how to correct this imbalance by awakening the chi or vital energy, and circulating it to the needed areas.

To note my religious studies is probably misleading in this context because the Healing Tao is not a religion and people of many different religious backgrounds practice it. It is a self-help system for healing and preventing illness and stress, and for enhancing all aspects of life, including the sexual. Its key concept is increasing life force energy or chi thru meditative techniques and physical exercises. This vital energy is circulated through acupuncture meridians (the Microcosmic Orbit is the main one) and channeled into health, vitality, balanced emotions, and creative and spiritual expression.

A very powerful emotional creative and spiritual expression is one’s sexuality. Through special Healing Tao techniques called Healing Love, participants learn the conservation and transformation of sexual energy as a revitalizing factor in their physical and spiritual development.

Healing Love and the Microcosmic Orbit meditation are only two of many rejuvenation disciplines taught by the Healing Tao. A few others include Tai Chi, Chi Nei Tsang (massage), Iron Shirt Chi Kung (physical exercises for developing internal energy or chi), and Fusion meditations that teach one how to transform negative emotions into positive ones. As a certified Healing Tao instructor, I have completed rigorous training and have been authorized to provide these and other Healing Tao teachings to interested students.

Finally, the photograph of me had no explanatory caption, nor did the article make any reference to what I’m doing, thereby creating a source of confusion for readers. I am demonstrating the “Embracing the Tree” Iron Shirt Chi Kung posture which is used to connect with the mother-earth energy.

I hope these explanations provide clarification for your readers.

Chrystal Marshall

Director, Healing Tao-Midwest Center