Welcome to the main site of the Xiantian College of Chinese Medicine (XCCM). Here you will find information on the arts we love, practice and teach! At the college, we run three year pond Diploma courses in Chinese medicine which are professionally recognised within the UK as well as shorter events aimed at qualified practitioners.
There is a growing trend within Chinese medicine to increasingly move towards a western model of working. Classical theories are being thrown out, Acupuncture is being seen through the lens of western medicine and anything deemed ‘unscientific’ is being stripped from this ancient tradition. This is not necessarily a western-only turn of events though; it is increasingly taking place in China as well with most of the more classical approaches to Chinese medicine now existing primarily in South East Asia.
There is nothing inherently ‘wrong’ with this if this is the kind of therapy you would like to study. Modern science has given the human race great advancements in health and many of the modernised versions of Chinese medicine work just fine for many health conditions. But there are many people out there who do not wish to see Chinese medicine through this modern ‘lens’. For many, the ancient theories hold a lot of attraction and as a working model they were an integral part of Asian medicine for centuries. Rather than dividing human beings from their environment, as is the modern way, the ancient theories see mankind as a united part of the trinity of Heaven, Humanity and Earth. The flow of information (Qi) between the two great poles is of huge importance to the practice and diseases are seen as a reflection of a persons Ming (destiny/lifepath) and Xing (nature) as well as simply the result of germs and pathogenic influences.
As Chinese medicine becomes more modernised it is also moving away from key skills which are integral to the practice. These are skills such as pulse diagnosis which is increasingly being phased out of Chinese medicine practice. More and more students are completing their training at University institutions without any skill or understanding of pulse diagnosis. This is a great shame as a time honoured tradition is slowly fading away.
Though both Rob and Damo have had the more modern version of Chinese medicine forma large part of their training they also have a large interest in the classical methods of practice. Damo studied the older versions of Chinese medicine as a part of his Daoist training and both tutors wish to provide the opportunity for study of these methods in the West. What the college provides is an understanding of Chinese medicine with an emphasis placed upon both the TCM and more classical methods of understanding the body and mind. A great deal of emphasis is placed upon the dying skills of classical diagnosis and students are expected to study personal cultivation and the nature of energetics alongside their treatment modalities. The esoteric forms a large part of the training and students thinking of applying for the training should be aware of this before they submit an application form.
The aim is to provide high quality and in depth training in Chinese medicine which takes a classical look at the nature of human health and disease. Personal skill is given as much regard as theoretical expertise and in this way we hope to bring back a side of Chinese medicine which is in danger of being lost.
Damo and Rob
The two main course tutors at the college are Damo Mitchell and Rob Aspell. They met in North Wales in 2010 and quickly became friends based upon their shared passion for Chinese medicine and the Daoist Arts. Rob had previously studied Wing Chun prior to Acupuncture and Damo runs the Lotus Nei Gong School of Daoist Arts which is an international organisation based around the internal systems of China. It wasn’t long after meeting that the two of them found themselves on a month long trip to central China where they discussed Chinese medicine and shared ideas from their respective methods. In 2015 the idea of a college was discussed and shortly afterwards the Xiantian College was opened.