Chapters 13 – Appears the patient

“A process cannot be understood by stopping it. Understanding must move with the flow of the process, must join it and flow with it”

Frank Herbert, Dune

Appears the patient. A middle aged dude who’s here for holidays. You can tell his mind is not messy as he delivers precise pieces of information regarding what brings him to get a treatment that day. And you can also tell because the perceptions you get are very precise and clear.

You can understand a lot about people’s mind by the way they talk and by the clarity of the perception you get. People with a clear mind don’t feel the same as people with a messy one. The weird aspect is that they just can’t see it because in order to see it they would need to use their mind…which is messy! Thoughts are symptoms, looking at them gives you an idea of the machine that produces them. It feels so obvious when you experience it.

Anyway, the patient describes a pain that goes from the middle of his back to the neck. As he does, the sensation appears in what you would call “your body”. That’s incorrect but I will let you discover that on your own, with time.

Psoas I was saying, appears the sensation. At first it feels a bit far away. But little by little it becomes more and more precise. It starts from the 8th thoracic vertebra and goes up to the 2nd cervical vertebra. The patient keeps on talking, explaining to me how it started etc. He is now sitting on my osteopathic plinth, still dressed up. I always keep my patients dressed up. I have little interest in their underwears to be honest, and I sometimes have to fight against some patients who really want to show their underwear. ‘It will be more comfortable’ they say. Comfortable? I thought they came for osteopathy. Yeah great joke! I really need to increase my fees.

Now I touch the 8th vertebra and tell the patient ‘it starts from here, then something is happening to this rib, and the 2nd cervical vertebra. The arm feels slightly heavy, a bit compressed’.

Usually patients freak out there. You need to understand at this point I haven’t run any “osteopathic test”. I have just listened with my eyes wide open.

‘How do you know?’ he asked.

Well, lad, I’m not sure you want to know. It’s complex, I thought

‘That’s my job’ I said.

When I talk about listening, I don’t talk about my ears or about this very weird thing that osteopaths call listening. Have you ever had a session where the osteopath is holding your head and closes their eyes pretending it will help them to feel more things? I don’t do that. I never do. Unless my patient really want’s to show their underwear, of course.

Back to the session. From now on my job is very clear. I have to work until those points feel better. Again, not the tension under my hands, the perception. It’s easy because there’s no questionning. I know what I have to do, it’s a single task, a clear one. I work until it’s gone. That’s all. It’s like emptying the dishwasher.

I see you. You can’t help but wonder which techniques I use. Your noisy little mind can be felt through the pages of this blog. The tricky part was everything I just talked about and you didn’t ask any questions about it. You are obsessed with techniques and you never wonder why the founder of osteopathy never showed his techniques.

Use the technique you like the most. Be it cracking, biodynamics, exercise, contacting spirits…I couldn’t care less. I care only to know if things are adjusted from abnormal to normal.

A bit of work here and there without letting go the perception. You can’t escape it. First, the 8th thoracic vertebra. Why? Because that’s the first one to appear in my mind. Then the upper neck, then the neck. Tensions unfold, perception is alive. Appears the collarbone that should explain the heaviness in the arm.



It’s easy. And already a sensation of a right hip appears. It’s still blurry, but it’s there. Hurry sir, my next patient is on their way.

It’s not always like that. But that’s where I’m heading.







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