Every so often I like to interview the staff here at City Acupuncture to get their take on different subjects. This is an introductory interview I did with Angela Barbara, L. Ac MSTOM. She is an acupuncturist and herbalist who treats everything from sports injuries to fertility cases. This post will be useful if you are thinking of seeing Angela but would like ot know more about her.
Robbie Benhuri (RB): So, let's get right down to it. Why are you an acupuncturist?
Angela Barbara (AB): My husband and I were studying martial arts, and he got injured. A friend treated him with acupuncture and herbs. When I saw what TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) can really do... I was completely sold!
RB: And why City Acupuncture? What motivates you to work here?
AB: I have long seen the need to change the landscape of American healthcare. But I am not by nature an activist - I am more of a quiet activist, I guess. I want my work to be for the betterment of society, not just my words. Like posting on Facebook is good, but I really wanted to just focus all my energy on actually working on the change rather than talkign about it.
It feels good to me to help people become empowered about their bodies and how to take care of their bodies. City Acupuncture gives me the opportunity to get in front of a LOT of people and show them what I can do. And treating in this way allows us to make the most amount of change any one practitioner can reasonably make.
RB: What did you do before TCM? Did it relate in any way?
AB: Actually, I studied and trained for a long time as a visual artist, and a lot of the concepts of TCM speak to my artistic side. As a visual artist I was always concerned with the idea of overarching patterns and relationships. I was influenced by the book, "The Holographic Universe," and also Taoist philosophy from my martial arts training. There is a concept of ???as above so below??? in TCM philosophy that really speaks to me. That???s how I worked in art, and once I realized that this is the basic idea of chinese medicine - that what we find in the body is what we find in the world, that was it for me.
RB: If there was one TCM philosophy concept that you could communicate to the world, what would it be?
AB: Well, in the Nei Jing (the most foundational text of Chinese Medicine), the very first chapter says ???people used to be so healthy, why aren???t they healthy anymore???? Well it???s because we don???t live in accordance with the seasons and our natural environment. We don???t eat the appropriate food at the appropriate time, we don't adjust our schedules according to the season... That's the basics, the first chapter of the Nei Jing. That book gives you all the tools you need to be a healthy person. It is based on the authors' observations watching the world grow and watching animals behave and interact with their environment and then watching people's health over time and noticing how its affected by cycles and changes in the environment. Not to mention what issues people are born with and what they inherit.
So if I had to choose just one concept it would be that: The more you can live in accordance wit the natural rythms of the Earth, the healthier you will be overall.
If you have any questions about TCM philosophy or acupuncture feel free to: