Arrogance Have No Place In Massage

Massage as everyone knows, had been around thousands of years if not millions of years existing. It is good that some culture made written account about it, and shared it for us generations after them to use in helping others. Lucky are the students today they have the luxury of the books to learn from, and a vast of teachers to show them how.

It is nice that the practice is now open for everyone interested to learn it; however, one thing bothers me.

Some of the people who went to the school of massage are conceit after learning what they know. Some of them believe so much that because they know more about the names of the bones and muscles of the body had made them superior masseurs over me, and the local practitioners on the countrysides who learned it from watching others doing it, or from fellows who learned it from the others. They believed that knowing more modalities and names of massage made them experts of the trade.

I am worried, that like the doctor’s profession, massage will become a “Rich only privilege.” Driven by greed and selfishness, I am worried, these learned massage “professionals” will do everything to rob-out the poor people of their almost free treatment of body ailments. I am afraid; they will create laws to forbid the “GIFTED” common people to practice their G-d-given skills to help people – just because they do not know the English term of “lasag”(Ilocano for Muscle), or “tulang”(Ilocano for Bone).

My dear fellow massage practitioners, I want you to know that knowing all the names and functions of the muscles, and bones, did not make you better than the person who replaced my dislocated shoulder joint, which I got, when I fell from my carabao at the age of six years old. In addition, your diplomas, tons of certificates, and licenses, surely, did not make you better than the one replaced my dislocated ankle joint. These people, and more like them, including my mother who was known for helping people with foreign objects from their eyes, did not finish high school, or even finished elementary grades, and yet were able to help people who needed their skills.

All the things you learned from school of massage did not make you superior than anyone else, and should not be your license to look down on people, who learned their stuff from the fellows who learned it from their old folks of our villages.

Let me tell you that I learned this skill with my heart. The truth is not all of my techniques were learned from school. I learned it from the boys in the farm I grew up with, some I learned from observing the fellows giving massage to the tired drivers on their jitneys, tired carpenters getting it on the construction sites, tired farmers having it under the shade of trees, and I learned it from experiencing the pleasure of massage myself. I learned it free, so, most of the time I give it free.

I only paid when I went to school for a year just to have a diploma and get the go to take my license by passing the Philippines Department of Health Massage License Examination. But the things I learned about anatomy and physiology did not make me a better masseur. What made me better(never will be the best) is from continuously offering it to people who needs help.

The things I am sharing here in my website are stuffs proven by my practice, and I want to share it here for all interested of massage to learn from – free!

The reason why it takes too long for me to write and post is I am not a prolific English speaker and writer, and my explanation is many times vague or incomplete. So, feel free to ask me and I will be happy to explain it to you until you understand it well.

Please, do not be as the others who were boastful by saying that my knowledge is nothing but junk!

Let us understand that shiatsu master Tokujiro Namikoshi discover the effectiveness of massage when he was only seven years old, without any knowledge about anatomy and physiology, and he did not have a diploma from school of massage when he put up his own school of Shiatsu.

Like Japan, and China, my country the Philippines, had been using massage for a long time. In the villages of Cordillera, young children were asked to give massage to the elders every night when they go to sleep at the “dap-ay”(a place where boys sleeps at night in the villages); however, this practice is gone in the last decade when people built bigger houses which can now accommodate the whole family. I am lucky I learned the basics of massage before it becomes extinct because of the selfishness, jealousy, and arrogance of others. e.g. Physical therapists, doctors, licensed massage practitioners who always question me about the functions of muscles and bones.

Fellow massage practitioners, massage is a very powerful tool for prevention of ailments, first aid, and to treat ailments if it is done with your heart, and with the help of the other basics of healthy living, such as food, rest and sleep, work and exercise and, right attitude and behavior.

Let us therefore learn from one another, and don’t let your diplomas, and certificates make you think you’re better than the others. There are a lot more secrets to learn about massage. And the best people who can teach us those things are those being used by the “common people” in the far flung areas – away from the influence of modern life.

Let us protect massage from becoming impure. We should not let the profession of massage become like the doctor profession. It is not a secret that, people are now turning to us for help of their pains, because most doctors nowadays are not doctors in profession, but are doctors in business.

Arrogance, and using massage only for personal gain as the driving force in learning it, taints the purity of massage. When it is tainted, its power to cure will greatly diminish.

A good masseur should be able to integrate and feel like the patient during treatment to have a satisfying result. The aim to help should be greater than any other personal gains.

I do believe that massage can help prevent almost all kinds of illnesses in human beings if applied with humility in our heart; and let personal motive be the last in our agenda in practicing this profession.

My Jewish friend had always told me that a doctor could not claim to have cured his patient because the ONE who created all to help His creation is merely using him. As massage therapists, we are, also, instruments to help others.

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