Symptoms of the body feeling simultaneously hot and cold, the stomach feeling full (abdominal distention) and accompanied by dizziness or nausea…all these indicate a condition which is known familiarly as masuk angin by Javanese communities. Literally “intrusion of the wind”. Usualy, masuk angin is experienced after sudden or long exposure to rain, traveling in strong windy conditions, excessive usage of a fan or AC, especially on an empty stomach or while the body already is experiencing a fatigue. If it is not immediately remedied, this ‘wind’ may attack more powerful systems and cause a disturbance to bodily organ functions, such as angina pectoris in the lungs, recurrent dizziness and indigestion accompanied by fever.
The Javanese retain several methods of traditional treatments to resolve such complaints, most commonly by applying kerokan (scraping with a coin). Another common method we wish to introduce here is the cupping therapy which is certainly famous all across Southeast Asia. In java cupping is popularly known a kop, stemming from the Dutch word for cup. Essentially it consists of applying a suctioning cup on a large flat part of the body and is specifically destined to ‘chase away the bad disease-causing winds in the body’ through a phenomenon of diffusion. Want to know how? It is very easy and simple!
First prepare the necessary ‘tools’, namely:
1 small clear glass , 1 large-size coin , a little coconut oil, 1 sheet of dry paper (not too wide) and a lighter.
Then do the following:
1. Lay out the sheet of paper and place the coin in the middle. Fold the paper around it and twist the top into a cone shape.
2. Dab the top of the paper cone with a little coconut oil, as well as at the bottom below the coin.
3. Light the top of the cone on fire, wait until it burns about halfway down. Place this burning cone on top of either the upper stomach area (above the bellybutton while patient is lying on their back) or other large flat painful parts such as on the upper or lower back (the patient lying face down).
4. Subsequently cover the glass over the burning cone and press firmly onto the skin so as not to remain loose. The burning should stop almost immediately. Release your hand softly, you will see the skin-part under the glass bulging up. This is expected so do not worry.
5. Leave for about 15 to 20 minutes then remove the glass and the cone. The area previously under the glass might look a bit reddish or pink. This is a normal phenomenon as the inner wind has been diffused. Ask the patient how he feels, great chance they might already experience a sensation of freshness in the body and a relief of anterior pains.
Enough for an introduction to ‘Kop’ now please take advantage of your glasses and coins and try out the treatment. You will be free from pain and the body will feel healthy again. Rahayu.
By Moko Pramusanto
SEPTIM Institute of EasternTraditional Healing
Jogonalan Lor, Kasihan, Bantul DIY