David Liang graduated from the University of Toronto in 1996 with a Bachelor of Science specializing in Physiology. He then went on to study Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, and massage at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) in San Diego, California. There he earned a Masters of Science degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine in the year 2000.
At PCOM, he studied both the Chinese as well as Japanese styles of acupuncture. He was inspired by the precision, effectiveness, and gentleness of the more superficial needling of the Japanese-style and it is this style of needling that he continues to employ today.
During his early training, teachings about a body-mind connection peaked his curiosity. It was something he never heard mentioned during his undergrad at U of T. It was during his first massage class where he had a first hand experience of this connection. Through the relaxation of his muscles he felt a corresponding release and calming of his mental tension. Inspired by this experience, he enrolled in the Massage Therapy program at PCOM and went on to learn and study various forms of massage which included Swedish, Shiatsu, Thai Massage and Tui-Na.
It was through his Shiatsu teacher, Kazuo Kawamata, where he was first exposed to Zen meditation. After returning to Toronto, he continued his meditation practice and began to explore the philosophy and practices of Tibetan Buddhism. After a couple years he realized he needed more guidance and a teacher. It was at that time he coincidentally met his teacher Catherine Jetsun-Yeshe Rathbun at the Friends of The Heart Meditation Centre whom he trained with until her passing. She trained him in basic Mindfulness techniques as well as the philosophical view and practices within the Theravadin, Mahayana as well as Vajrayana traditions. He became an instructor at Friends of the Heart before the centre closed its doors. Today, he shares meditation and mindfulness instructions during his acupuncture sessions.
After his return to Toronto, he also continued to explore hrough personal study the theories and techniques of a variety of somatic or mind-body-based therapies from a more from a Western origin. This included Cranialsacral Therapy, Rolfing, Alexander Technique, Feldenkrais, Hanna Somatics, Hellerwork and Trager Mentastics.
The ideas of aligning the body’s structure with gravity from Ida Rolf, the creater of Rolfing, resonated deeply within him and inspired him to work more on his own structural alighnment. This is when he began to practice Yoga, specifically Iyengar and Restorative Yoga.
More recently he has become interested in Trauma-Informed Therapy and the work of Peter Levine and the Polyvagal theory of Stephen Porges. He has found their discoveries are very much in line with traditional instructions on Meditation and Mindfulness and enjoys combining the information from both streams.