by Barbara J. Stankus
For eight weeks, a group of OLLI students settled into their chairs in Room D in anticipation of Clark Zimmerman’s lively discussions of some of the fundamental ideas behind the mysteries of Chinese medicine. Clark’s exuberance and enthusiasm lit up the room as he led us through the fundamentals of Qi, Yin and Yang, Chinese herbs, tongue and pulse diagnosis, acupuncture, moxibustion, and the 5 phases/elements. He explained why an acupuncture is placed in the foot to treat a headache, but he really got our attention when he told us that one of Qi’s functions is to protect us from “evil pernicious influences.” Who among us does not need such protection?
Just who is this spirited, dynamic, and playful individual? Clark and his 5 siblings grew up in a loving and supportive environment in Indianapolis. Interestingly, his parents and stepfather were Western medicine practitioners! Following in his parents’ footsteps, Clark was a pre-Med student at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio until his senior year when he switched majors to English Literature.