For a generation of reflexologists it is an iconic image of reflexology, the pictograph of hand and footwork from ancient Egypt. Hugely significant at the time of its discovery in 1980, it gave reflexologists roots in an ancient culture.
Reflexology was given its ancient roots by chance. The pictograph was discovered in 1980 when reflexologist Ed Case and his wife Ellen of Los Angles were on a tour of the Papyrus Museum in Cairo. The tour guide said, there’s something here you’ll be interested in. It was a papyrus rendering of the bas-relief carving found in the Tomb of the Physician, Ankhmahor in Saqqara, Egypt dating from 2300 B. C. E.
(On a personal note, Kevin had a telephone conversation with Ed when he returned from his trip emphasizing the significance of his discovery. Ed died the next day.)
The familiar black and white silhouette pictograph was created by an artist commissioned by Ed’s friend and fellow reflexologist Jim Ingram. Ed and Jim were founding members of the Foot Reflexology Awareness Association of Los Angeles. The group promoted by providing reflexology samples at health fairs and the Police Olympics. Such promotion in a town where television and movie production is a major industry did not go unnoticed. The group is credited with garnering attention for reflexology on a national level as reflexology has made “appearances” in television programs and movies over the years starting in 1988 with the Roseanne show and Friends.