Conception Vessel points lie along the Conception Vessel acupuncture channel, which runs up the anterior mid-line of the body, its Yin aspect. Click for more on yin and yang.
Some of these points are very important to acupuncturists because they back up treatments using other acupuncture points.
Many of them are vital in developing and influencing Yin energy. Others are powerful local points, for energy, the womb, the stomach and so on.
Some are Alarm or Front-Mu points.
Some acupuncturists are wary about using these points too much, while others use them all the time, or at least, often.
They aren’t usually the first points to be taught in Acupuncture Colleges because what the Conception Vessel and its points do can take a bit of understanding.
If you are receiving acupuncture at one of these points, click on the point’s name in the table above to read about it.
Those little dots up the mid-line of the torso don’t really do justice to the path of the Conception Vessel. It starts, so all the ancient texts on the matter say, in the low abdomen, probably in the uterus in women and possibly in the prostate gland in men.
(However, its root is really almost certainly in the Chong Mai vessel.)
From that point in the low abdomen it goes down to its first surface point at Conception Vessel 1, which lies in front of the anus and, in women, behind the vulva.
From there it rises up within the abdomen to meet with many other zangfu energies, including the Liver, Kidney, Spleen and Small Intestine.
Even when it seems to terminate at Conception Vessel 24, its path hasn’t finished. In fact is winds round the mouth and terminates just below the eyes at Stomach point 1.
So conception vessel points also cover the face and cheeks, and when I’m treating points along the Stomach Channel on the face I am also using my knowledge of the Conception Vessel to help them act more effectively.
Another branch, which you can’t see in the picture, descends in the abdomen and then rises up the spine. That matches the Governor channel, which also travels up the the spine.
From this you can see that Governor and Conception vessels are really intertwined, in fact two branches of the same vessel.
Yet another branch, called its connecting channel, spreads from Conception Vessel 15 Jiuwei over the abdomen.
During its journey it connects with all the zangfu, plus the Governing Vessel and Chong Mai (from which it commences).
In many cases, Ren Mai points are powerful energy centres so are used only when the energies are flowing smoothly in what your acupuncturist deems is the right direction.
To take an analogy, suppose you put rocket fuel in a small car (just supposing it would work like a rocket!). If the car’s engine is out of tune, the driver dozy, the body fabric rusty and the wheels out of alignment, what might happen?
Yes. Well. Quite.
It would be better to use rocket fuel only when you know the driver is alert, relaxed, ready and healthy, and his car is in good condition with good brakes. Otherwise, he might drive recklessly and cause damage.
Likewise, an acupuncturist might aim to get everything else in your body working smoothly and in balance before greatly boosting your energy. Of course, the more experienced the acupuncturist, the more he or she might know how to use these points early on.
And these points have fantastic qualities.
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