workshop

Slapping Therapy – Hongchi Xiao’s ‘Paida and Lajin self-healing’

The media has been reporting that a very sad and rather distressing event has taken place in Sydney this week, in which a seven year old boy whose parents brought him to the seminar of a visiting practitioner of alternative medicine has died the evening following his attendance of a ‘Paida and Lanjing self-healing’ workshop.

The boy, who it is understood had diabetes, attended a workshop run by practitioner Hongchi Xiao, who advocates some rather worrying methods for the treatment of medical conditions.

Hongchi Xiao in Australia in 2013. Photo: Facebook

Hongchi Xiao in Australia in 2013. Photo: Facebook

Hongchi Xiao developed what he refers to as ‘Paida and Lajin self-healing’, which can be used for almost all diseases, in which slapping and patting the body, and stretching tendons, is claimed to promote healing. Xiao claims that repeatedly slapping one part of the body “builds heat, causing blood vessels to expand, and ‘chi’ to flow strongly. Yang rises, yin melts and long-held toxins and blocks are released”.

Video testemonials from Xiao’s website show people slapping themselves until they are bruised – there are reports of people vomiting and falling unconscious. Testimonials also include mention of parents using the slapping technique on their children.

Xiao, who is from China, has been touring Australia and presenting workshops on his method – reportedly the week long Sydney workshop cost $1800 to attend. He is believed to have left Australia after being questioned by police regarding the death of the seven year old boy.

Obviously, we’re not in a position to say precisely what happened to the boy, beyond reports that he and his parents attended the workshop, that he was very unwell afterward, and that he passed away in an ambulance that evening.

For any details beyond that, and before we go forming any certain conclusions on this specific case, I think that we must await the coroner’s investigation and subsequent report.

Based on the news reports though, it’s very difficult not to have an emotional response to this story – I certainly have. The Telegraph have reported that the boy was made to fast for days before the workshop, it is possible that his insulin was
withdrawn as part of Paida and Lajin protocol, and the notion of repeatedly hitting a young child is frankly incredibly sickening to me.

I’ll check in again on this case after the coroner has performed an investigation and their report has been made public. Until then, a note for our overseas listeners… Hongchi Xiao is scheduled to conduct workshops in Salshausen, Germany
later this month, in Hong Kong in June, in Bandung in Indonesia in June and July, then in Seattle in the USA in August.

Should his tours still go ahead, please keep an eye on him – unfortunately he slipped under the radar for us here in Australia, but perhaps if he’s scheduled to visit where you live – if you’re in Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia or the United
States, you’d be able to let people know what Xiao’s methods involve and their potentially dangerous outcomes.

This post is a transcript of Evidence, Please on The Skeptic Zone Podcast, episode #341 {Permalink}.

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