“Matilda’s Acupuncture Session” – Photo by Mark Hillary
I learned a few things over the past few days, which by the way, have been great.
For those of you who’ve been asking after Naomi, she’s doing very, very well at home, but more about that later.
One of Naomi’s cousins who she doesn’t get to see very often, flew in from Taiwan on what I thought was some hocus pocus traditional Chinese medicine seminar thing. And although both Naomi and myself are slightly more enlightened about Chinese medicine, I’m still not sure what the cousin is here for because of our limited grasp of Mandarin.
This is probably one of the few times I’m glad I have some grasp of Mandarin, because the cousin took pains to explain to us heathens that Chinese medicine wasn’t all the hocus pocus things we were brought up to think it was. I think he felt he had to, because Naomi’s mum had told him that us “western educated” people were disdainful of anything that wasn’t explained in English, and that wasn’t found in English and American medical journals, or something to that effect because I’m not sure what she said because I have a limited grasp of Mandarin.
To cut a short story shorter, we knew Chinese medicine in Singapore’s was called “Traditional Chinese Medicine“, (or “TCM”, because we like to acronymize everything), and also because we thought it was a direct translation of the Chinese word for it, “Zhong Yi” (ä¸åŒ»).
But! It apparently is not! The cousin explained that there was the common misconception that the “Zhong” in “Zhong Yi” referred to “Zhong Guo” or the Middle Kingdom, aka China. The truth is, according to the cousin, that the “Zhong” simply means “Zhong”, or “middle”, alluding to balance and harmony, and that the whole aim of “Zhong Yi” is to help one’s body attain a harmonious balance.
So, that’s it. TCM for me will remain the abbreviation for Teo Chew Muay and nothing else. Except maybe “Turner Classic Movies“, but that shouldn’t be counted because I don’t really watch the channel.
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