The Many Faces of Mien Shiang
Wherever I go people ask about my ‘other’ Mien Shiang events or teachings. To my medically-based students — especially those in Traditional Chinese, Oriental, and allopathic medicine — ‘other’ refers to my public and corporate workshops and seminars. To my corporate clients, the ‘other’ means the varied medical groups and specialties to which I offer seminars and presentations.
In the past few weeks, I had two unique and rewarding, ‘other’ experiences.
This month we’ll talk about how Mien Shiang made a difference at a corporate event at Mattel, Inc. and next month, how Dr. Andrew Weil’s University of Arizona Program of Integrative Medicine (PIM) case study presentations made an encouraging difference to me.
In early March, Mattel (parent to Barbie and Ken and a multitude of other toys many of us grew up with) hosted a Design Xchange. Over the last few years, I have done many workshops for Mattel, for their Platypus program and for individual design teams. This event was different. Three hundred multi-talented Mattel designers gathered for a day of creative, innervating workshops presented by outside artists, sociologists, and cutting-edge entrepreneurs brought in to help shake up and wake up the creative processes of the design teams.
Because nearly half the participants had signed up for the Mien Shiang workshop, the Design Xchange coordinator, the fabulous Lynde Hartman, suggested I do three intimate workshops rather than one large one. Well, we couldn’t call workshops with more than 70 people each spilling onto the floors intimate. It was, however, exciting.
I brought along to the Design Xchange Henry Lee, a full-time student of Traditional Chinese Medicine, who works part-time for The Mien Shiang Institute. It was his first time to witness Mien Shiang used in any way other than as a diagnostic tool for Chinese Medicine. Henry was blown away as corporate employees and main stream designers clamored for information on how Mien Shiang could give them a more profound understanding of their true nature, as well as similar insights to their loved ones, friends, and especially in this case, their coworkers. When he saw how these creative people then began to apply this new knowledge and skill to become better artists, and to work more cohesively and productively with each other, he was excited and moved by their openness and by the power of this simple diagnostic tool – for mind and spirit, as well as body.
Henry’s experience at Mattel is similar to the one I have every time I teach or present a workshop or seminar.
- The Faces of Mien Shiang
- The Face Reader Book Released Today, April 12
- iVillage Update
- Ask the Face Reader
The Face Reader, published by Dutton, available April 12.
The Face Reader - is released today, April 12, 2007!
I’ve been waiting to say those words for quite some time. It’s here. In the stores. Online. In a big stack on my office floor.
It's time to celebrate! I’m sharing this exciting event with friends, colleagues, and students this evening at a cocktail party at one of my favorite places in Venice, California. It will be a lovely way to honor the so many who have been integral in encouraging and supporting me in writing The Face Reader. I can't wait to thank them.
Some extraordinary people who have made this dream a reality, will be in New York tonight, so I want to shout their praises now. None of it would have been possible without the vision and page by page input of my beautiful, inside and out, agent, Bonnie Solow.
Brian Tart, president and publisher of Dutton, is my gifted editor. Every comment, every suggestion was spot on and made the book better in every way. Neil Gordon has been exceptional and beyond any expectation. Best of all, both Brian and Neil are true believers, and huge supporters, of the good that Mien Shiang does.
And I’m grateful for Beth Parker, publicity manager at Dutton, who has been a great help and great fun.
Celebrity Face Off - iVillage
Last month I mentioned that an article was coming out on www.iVillage.com in the Entertainment section. It did come out and is still running through today. If you haven't seen it yet, give it a click — it's light and fun.
Lindsey Unterberger, who did the piece was a delight. But she didn't warn me about the un-fan mail I would get! Let me be the first to warn you -- do not take sides on any of these celebrity romances. There are many — many — out there who have serious stakes in celebrities' love lives. It's been fun, and enlightening.
Q & A - This Month’s Ask the Face Reader
Q: Dear Patrician: I just read the www.iVillage.com Celebrity Face Off profile. That was fun! I have a question: How does cosmetic surgery affect how you read someone? You mentioned Jennifer Aniston’s narrow nostrils, but I think she’s had a nose job. Do you have to see someone’s original nose, or does the nose they “choose” say more about a person than the nose they’re “given?”
A: Hello Erika. According to Taoist theory, the traits associated with the nose are ego, power, drive, and leadership. And it seems that every culture consciously or subconsciously regards people with larger noses to have those strong qualities. Those with smaller noses tend to be team players, or the quiet behind-the-scenes supporters. If you doubt this, take a look at the noses that belong to the powerful leaders in your own circles, and worldwide.
In Mien Shiang, more is more, so if you whittle away at the size of your nose, you are also whittling away the impact of your ego, power, drive and leadership abilities, to yourself and to others.
Most of us realize that when we change our appearance we often change our behavior. The more I understand the correlation of mind, body, spirit, and behavior, the more I see how profound these changes are. It’s equally important to remember how deeply others are affected by these changes. If you no longer look like a leader–with a good, strong nose that ‘”comes off the face”’– others will not respond positively to your leadership, even if they have in the past.
These changes can be positive or challenging, or a combination of both. That’s why I strongly recommend to those contemplating cosmetic surgery to think of all the changes ahead, not just the physical ones.
In answer to your last question: both noses say a lot. The nose you are born with tells us the gifts or challenges you came into the world with regarding ego, power, drive and leadership. The nose you shape yourself (or with a little help from a plastic surgeon), tell us that you may have just created some new and unique gifts and challenges that you may not know how to deal with, simply because they are new, and mostly because they are opposite to your true nature. Understanding, accepting, and embracing your true nature–with all its quirks, and gifts, and challenges–helps you to live your life to its fullest. Find ways to best prepare for and respond to those changes. Naturally, I think Mien Shiang is one of the many good ways to do this.
Since this is just the tip of the iceberg, or nose so to speak, I’ll be writing more about plastic surgery and it’s effects from a Mien Shiang perspective in an article to be posted on my website in late summer.
Thank you for your question.
Until next month . . .
In the next few weeks I'll be in NY, Seattle, Vancouver, Montreal, Boston, Cincinnati, LA, Tucson, San Francisco... let me hear from you if you'll be there, too.