The upper gate

The upper gate controls the rising of energy from the spine into the brain, and is located at the junction between the Occiput and the Atlas (C1). It is called the Jade Pillow (玉 枕 yù zhěn).

In TCM, the closest acupuncture point would be GV-16 – but this is not called Jade Pillow. Instead, the points with this name are lateral at BL-9. This is pointing to something. The neck is too dense a structure to access the Jade Pillow form the midline, and so it is needled from the side.

The upper gate is said to take longer to open than the other two gates. So difficult is this barrier to overcome that it has been referred to as the Iron Wall. Now, one Taoist master remarked that the upper gate itself is quite easy to open, but that first one must open the mute’s gate GV-15 which he translated into English as the door of speech, which is at the level of C1-C2 (the AA joint).

Casey Guzay and the Dental Research Group of Chicago determined that this point is a fulcrum for the movement of the jaw (the Quadrant Theorem or Guzay’s Theorem). There are 136 muscles (68 muscle pairs) that control this movement, and it is well-known in the west that the muscles around the jaw are frequently tense and unbalanced, leading to disfunction in the Tempero-Mandibular Joint (TMJ).

Now we see why it is so hard to open this gate. What does this mean, the door of speech? It means that we must not be mute, but must speak your truth. When you do this, you are ready to open the upper gate.

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~ by scalambra on December 4, 2010.

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