History of Foot and Hand Reflexology
Foot Reflexology or the firm but gentle manipulation or massage of reflexes in both feet has been passed on from generation to generation for centuries. When humans first placed their feet on the earth's surface, they were naturally stimulated by walking and running over the uneven ground, but the introduction of sandals and shoes has reduced the feet's inborn sensitivity.
The Egyptians contributed greatly to the development of science and medicine. Before the Egyptian culture, healers used witchcraft to drive out evil spirits from the body which were blamed for causing disease. The Ancient Egyptian doctors were the first physicians to study the human body scientifically. They studied the structure of the brain and knew that the pulse was in some way connected with the heart. In addition they became masters at setting bones, caring for wounds and successfully treating many illnesses.
The early Egyptian artists contribute to our knowledge of the medical procedure of their time. They carefully recorded scenes of daily life which included the medical practices of the day (the date was 2,330 B.C.) Their medical wall paintings and engravings preserve a history of surgical operations, anatomical observation and medical treatments. Both papyri and wall paintings bear witness to the part played by medicine and physicians in that culture. Evidence that the medical profession was held in great esteem is found in the tomb of Ankhmahor, a physician who was the most influential official, second only to the King. It is in his tomb at Saqqara that the scene depicting the practice of Reflexology can be found. Egyptian physicians did not only practice medicine. Some physicians were also engineers, architects, master builders, metaphysicians, astrologers and scribes. The knowledge a physician had and was entitled to practice was painted or engraved on the wall of his tomb. Ankhmahor's tomb has six wall carvings which include circumcision, child birth, pharmacology, embalming, dentistry and Reflexology. These scenes were carved not only to honour the physician but also for religious purposes.
It was believed that when the spirit or soul of the physician sought to return to the body from the Afterlife, it was guided by the information on the tomb walls to the correct body. Sincere there were many physicians, the scenes which record the activities of a person's life were to the soul, like reading that person's biography. They aided the soul in selecting the proper body as it returned to earth.
According to the Papyrus Institute in Cairo, the hieroglyphic writing which appears above the scene reads "Do not let it be painful" says one of the patients. "I do as you please" is the reply. This particular wall scene is a raised relief, without colour, carved into the tomb wall. This carving is only part of the scenes depicted in the pyramid, other scenes show the therapeutic application of pressure on hands and shoulders.
Dr. Wang-Wei maintained that as the pressure was applied and maintained, healing energy was released in the patients. bodies.
The fact that ancient Egypt and China both seem to have shared the same, or similar knowledge of healing techniques, raises the question of whether these two great civilizations had been in contact with each other, or is it just a coincidence?
Ironically in order for foot Reflexology to be accepted into modern China, the principle of Ear Reflexology (See article on History of Ear Reflexology) which has been known and well accepted in China for centuries, was first addressed, and because of its proven effectiveness, within the last decade Foot Reflexology or foot massage was given official governmental acceptance.
History of Ear Reflexology
In the latter cases, gold earrings were often prescribed and were deemed to provide a continuous stimulation of the visual centres in the brain. As a matter of fact, may modern European doctors still recommend gold or silver earrings to patients suffering from eye deficiencies. Gold is said to have a strengthening or tonifying effect (yang), while silver is said to have a sedating, or soothing effect (yin).
We know that Hippocrates spent several years studying medicine in Egypt. Whether it is there that he learned of treating diseases by the ear, or whether it is an ancient Aryan heritage is a matter of speculation. However, four centuries before Christ, which may even be before the Nei Jing (Internal Classic of Chinese Medicine), mentioned above, Hippocrates speaks of a treatment to induce sterility in men by making a small incision behind the auricle. This intervention allowed a couple to have a normal sex life, but reduced the sperm content in the seminal fluid.
His discovery of the physiological links of the ear to the inverted foetus shape or human embryo sparked a wave of intensive research in China, leading to further developments in this fascinating field. To date the vast research undertaken in China has led to the discovery of approximately 200 points on the auricle itself, many of which differ from Dr. Nogier's locations.
The modern practitioner of "auriculotherapy" uses a combination of Dr. Nogier's theory and the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) theory, which incorporates the use of meridians for the treatment and diagnoses. The popularity of this safe, simple method of treating the body is continuing to grow and become more precise and successful.
World Health Organization (WHO)