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Classical Chinese medicine represents one of humanity’s richest and uninterrupted streams of traditional knowledge. It is a highly sophisticated clinical system that offers a real alternative for the serious health care needs of our time. The 21st century will see a return to the time-honored values of living in harmony with nature and the essence of being fully human. This journey toward genuine health and wholeness is precipitated by the present blossoming of the traditions of holistic medicine, with Chinese medicine blazing the trail. At the National College of Natural Medicine’s School of Classical Chinese Medicine, we are committed to transmitting the deepest and clinically most powerful aspects of this medicine.
–Heiner Fruehauf, PhD, LAc, Founding Professor, School of Classical Chinese Medicine
Dr. Heiner Fruehauf founded the School of Classical Chinese Medicine (CCM) at NCNM with the mission of restoring the original nature of Chinese medicine. His vision attracted a group of like-minded scholar-practitioners from across China and the West. Together, they are committed to training clinicians capable of tapping the true power of this ancient yet timeless system, which is both a highly sophisticated medical science and a deeply spiritual art form.
The CCM faculty and administrators are attentive to the ongoing challenge of providing truly classical training within the framework of a modern graduate curriculum. Most Chinese medicine schools worldwide emphasize a systematized form of the medicine developed over the last century, commonly referred to as “Traditional Chinese Medicine,” or TCM. This standardized approach to the medicine is readily taught in a classroom setting. However, when one explores the ancient roots of TCM, one finds a highly complex system of knowledge (codified in books referred to as the classical texts) that can be learned only through the cultivation of deep respect for nature and a highly individualized relationship with the medicine.
In ancient time, such a relationship developed through study of the classical texts in combination with the direct transmission of knowledge, skills, and awareness from a master in a lineage-based system. To capture what is essential from the classical methods of teaching, the CCM programs include classroom instruction that is informed by the classical texts and infused with case discussion and lineage transmission. The classroom experience is complemented with small group mentorship-style instruction and weekend qigong and taiji retreats held in natural settings. Elective classes in subjects such as classical texts, calligraphy, and Weiqi (the Chinese board game known as “Go” in Japan) are available for students who wish to connect more deeply with the milieu of the ancient scholar-practitioner.
The CCM faculty are a community of educators, scholars, researchers and practitioners trained in the classical traditions. Through transmission and other lineage-based teaching methods, they bring alive the rich history and philosophy of this multifaceted medical system. They weave together the art and science of theories and practices developed over millennia, and mentor students on the practical application of this ancient knowledge in the modern world. Despite their high level of individual attainment, they are accessible, energetic, and devoted to the success of their students.