1. I love learning and if I learn something, I learn it well. Which is probably why I have so many advanced degrees! In addition to my MD degree from Oregon Health & Science University, I have a Master’s in Public Health from UCLA, a Master’s degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine from Emperor’s College, and a Master’s in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica.
2. I loved watching Star Wars as a child! Hearing about “the Force” definitely fueled my fascination with Eastern thought and the Mind-Body relationship. Use the Force, Luke!
3. I love teaching. My favorite part is watching someone learn something new and have that information become their own. I’m a natural teacher because I’m always loving to share what I’ve been learning. Just ask my wife, Alanna! During my medical residency, my peers picked me to be Chief Resident and I was awarded the Resident Teacher Award. I’ve also taught Integrative Medicine at the doctoral level at several acupuncture colleges and have been faculty at the University of Santa Monica’s Spiritual Psychology program since 2011.
4. There’s a special place in my heart for those who are less fortunate. I’m honored to have received an award from the California Medical Board and Uncommon Good’s Adopt an Angel program in recognition of my service while working at a community health center for the underserved in Los Angeles. I also received a student leadership award in medical school for my volunteer work with disadvantaged ethnic minorities.
5. I have my own journey of dealing with chronic pain.
Of all that I’ve learned, my experience with pain has been my greatest teacher. Much of what I share in my classes comes out of my own desire to find solutions that are safe and natural. To find out more about my classes, click here.
6. I have needled myself with an acupuncture needle thousands of times. One of my first acupuncture instructors would not let us needle another person until we could needle ourselves painlessly. Needless to say, I am always looking to utilize the least painful modality, tool or safest medication or supplement first, if at all possible!
7. I’ve lived in Hong Kong for a year. Between my 3rd and 4th year of medical school, I worked as a waiter in a cafe part-time while learning Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture. I also spent the summer after my 1st year of medical school on an exchange program learning about Traditional Chinese Medicine in Beijing and Shanghai. It was very inspiring to see a traditional medicine integrated into a modern hospital system!
8. I love gardening! I find the practice of medicine very similar. Metaphorically speaking, what environment (light, water, nutrients, etc) do we need to grow and flourish?
9. And speaking of, I love metaphorical thinking! For example, how do I look at science? Science is like sheet music. It’s a foundational way of communicating. But if we only look at the sheet music, we would miss enjoying the experience of music. Science can be used to communicate certain truths but the experience of the music is the most important. So how does science point us in the direction of living our lives with greater joy, love, well-being, beauty and meaning? That’s how I look at science.
I look forward to meeting you and helping you live your life with greater vitality and joy!