Harmonizing the Five Spirits with Acupuncture

Harmonizing the Five Spirits with Acupuncture
Harmonizing the Five Spirits with Acupuncture
19 and 20 February 2022
10.30 AM - 6.00 PM


Through observation of nature, ancient shamans developed a means to categorize and explain the various fluctuations in nature. They understood how the patterns observed in the natural world applied to the human body, how it changed through time, and how on a personal level certain spiritual disorders resulted in specific disease patterns, both physical and mental. They mastered the art of nourishing their awareness of environmental changes and changes in their bodies, of cultivating energy practices to maintain their health, and of living within the rhythm of the ever changing universal qi.

As Chinese medicine was modified to fit a Western medical model during the Chinese Cultural Revolution (1962-1976), the medical community relied less on spirit-focused treatments and instead directed treatments based on the physical. However, currently there is a growing interest in working with the spirit and ancient wisdom traditions, where ultimately the advancements in Chinese medicine are combined with the ancient wisdom traditions.

Course Description

During this course, CT Holman will teach you how you can use the vital ancient wisdom (both shamanic and classical Chinese medicine) of the five spirits of the body (zhi, hun, shen, yi, and po) in your daily practice. What is their energetic nature, how do the spirits affect physiology, how do they interact and how does the state of their health affect the overall body ecosystem? CT will explain that each organ system is associated with a universal spirit and when all spirits are working harmoniously, the body and mind are in excellent health and resonate clearly with the eternal universal energies. To make perfect use of this harmony, it is important to realise, that although every individual has all five spirits, each person has their own personal percentage of each spirit, giving them a specific elemental make-up that shines in them like a light. CT will explain how to use various diagnostic techniques such as, facial, spiritual, pulse, channel, body, and tongue diagnosis to understand the health of the spirits in the body.

By sensing the type(s) of each of these different spiritual lights present in a person, the state of their spirits can be detected, which is of great importance when harmonizing the five spirits in a patient. When the spirits in the body are in harmony so is a person’s relationship with the external world, since the five spirits are represented in the universe as the five spirit animals (mystical warrior, green dragon, red phoenix, yellow bird, and white tiger). When the internal environment of a person is harmonized, their body becomes a clear vessel between heaven and earth, and they resonate clearly with the eternal universal energy of the five spirit animals, and therefore with time and space and the ever changing universal qi. This state of being improves longevity and allows full access to their jing (essence).

There are unique relationships between each pair of spirits in the body and in the external environment. For example, the mystical warrior of the north and the red phoenix of the south work together to balance the water and fire energies. CT will explain these relationships and how to identify disharmony and elegantly address them.

Acupuncture effectively harmonizes the five spirits. CT provides several point prescriptions to treat spirit imbalances and will show various videos of point needling technique. Case studies will be included. 


  • Learn detailed symbolism associated with each of the five spirits of the body.
  • Understand and be able to apply diagnostic methods to identify spirit imbalances.
  • Learn how to apply Chinese shamanic-based symbolism to acupuncture treatment.
  • Learn how to apply a spirit-based intention to acupuncture point prescriptions.
  • Learn the five-element drum rhythm to awaken each spirit.
  • Understand the various interactions between the spirits.
  • Learn how to create specific Chinese acupuncture treatments based on a patient’s disease pattern.
  • Learn how a person’s spirits interact with the external world.


  • Introduction to Chinese shamanism, the history of shamanism in Chinese medicine and how it applies to medical treatment.
  • Describe the symbolism of each of the five spirits.
  • Discuss diagnostic methods to identify spirit imbalances using the symbolism of the five spirit animals. 
  • Explanations of the various spirits (zhi, hun, shen, yi and po) and how they affect physiology.
  • Demonstrate the drumbeat associated with each spirit animals and how to awaken the spirit and utilize it with acupuncture treatment.
  • Explain the paired connections between the zhi and shen and the hun and po and how this relates to physiology and pathology. Discuss the role of the yi regarding the other four spirits. 
  • Explain descriptions of spirit-based locations and names of points and how to formulate point prescriptions. Demonstrate how to utilize the five spirits in treatments.
  • Discuss the relationship of a person’s internal spirits to the cosmos.
  • Show various videos explaining the location and needle technique of acupuncture points.
  • Provide case studies describing the use of the five spirits to diagnose disease patterns and formulate acupuncture prescriptions.

Time schedule

The first part of each day will take place via a pre-recorded webinar. This is due to the 7-hour time difference with the United States. On the last 1.5 hours of each course day, CT Holman will teach live via an internet connection and answer questions.

Books by CT Holman

In July 2020, Singing Dragon of CT Holman published the book "Shamanism in Chinese Medicine" - Applying Ancient Wisdom to Health and Healing, with a foreword by Master Zhongxian Wu; ISBN print: 9781787751378; ISBN eBook: 9781787751385.

Book "The Treatment of Emotional Trauma with Chinese Medicine"

In 2017 the book "The Treatment of Emotional Trauma with Chinese Medicine" - Integrated Diagnostic and Treatment Strategies was published by Singing Dragon, with a foreword by Lillian Bridges; ISBN print: 9781848193185; ISBN eBook: 9780857012715.


Online webinar

€ 314
Required knowledge

Basic TCM.

Target group

Acupuncturists, herbalists, tuina therapists, shiatsu therapists, last year TCM, students acupuncture, students herbalism, students tuina, students shiatsu.

Accredited by

Accreditation is obtained from NVA (code AT), NWP (licenses Acupuncture and Shiatsu), and Zhong (Category 1, 15 NAP)

Accreditation will be applied at Eufom and BAF if a student is a member of one of these organizations.

A member of the VNT can apply for an individual accreditation in the member section online.

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