Paul Schwartz, L.Ac., MAOM
I’ve been a licensed Chinese Medicine practitioner for the past six years and recently in March 2012 moved from Austin to Redmond, Washington with my wife, Raejune. I began my training at the AOMA School of Integrative Medicine in 2002 and graduated in the end of 2005 with a Masters in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Before that I spent most of my twenties living in Taipei, Taiwan where I spent a lot of time walking through Di Hua St., famous for its herbal shops and apothecaries. My interest in Chinese culture started with a love for martial arts. In my early teens and throughout high-school I practiced Shaolin gong fu, as well as internal arts like Xing-Yi and Ba Gua with Master George Hu in Houston. While earning my B.A. in anthropology and creative writing at the University of Arizona, I studied William CC Chen’s Tai Chi Boxing with Dean Vusikas. In 1994 I moved to Taipei and began learning Dr. Tao Ping-Hsiang’s Tai Ji Chuan with Tony Zayner. I wrote an article about this experience which was published in the Fall 1998 edition of The Empty Vessel magazine. My adventure with internal arts continued at AOMA where I studied Sheng Zheng Qi Gong with Master Li Jun Feng.
I had been drawn towards spirituality from a young age. I spent my teenage years absorbed in Carlos Castaneda books, Bill Moyer’s Joseph Campbell interviews, books on Buddhism, Taoism, Sufi poetry, and Gnostic mysticism. Though the books were deeply inspiring, they also left a type of intangible longing that would seem to guide me throughout my twenties and thirties. This predilection took me on various adventures with Buddhist monks, American gurus, qi gong teachers, and Sufi masters, but I never felt I found what I was looking for. While practicing as an acupuncturist in Austin, I became disenchanted with the way I was working. Despite the spiritual and philosophical base of Chinese medicine, I found myself uninspired as I noticed I was categorizing patients and their conditions into preconceived diagnostic boxes. It felt mechanical and there was a sense of something missing. The urge to explore took me to some unexpected places and during the next three years I’d dive into a diverse world of quantum physics, subtle energy medicine, shamanism, and various schools of “reality creation”. The ever inspiring exploration of how our thoughts, attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions shape our lives, including our physical experience, filled in the missing pieces. This is now what fuels my interest and shapes the way I approach healing. I plan to gradually write about these discoveries here on my blog.
My practice is now guided by two primary goals: relieve pain, physical and emotional, and inspire self-empowerment. Learning to gain control of your own health and well being is truly the most important part of the journey of healing and transformation. With the right tools and the right perspectives, you can experience profound life changes.