Baruch Brian Schwadron

about

A Healer

  • Trained herbalist through apprenticeships across the globe, and a certificate from the California School of Herbal Studies as well as the Evergreen School of Clinical Herbalism
  • Wilderness First Responder with extensive conventional medical training
  • Shamanic healer with 12 years of dedicated study and practice
  • Familiarity with and training in Tibetan, Chinese and Ayurvedic medical systems
  • Life-long practice as nutritionist and chef
  • BS in Cultural Medicine, Spanish
  • Certificates in Roots of Herbal Medicine (CSHS)(, Clinical Herbalism (ESHM)

A Mentor

  • 12 years extensive experience and graduate training in group facilitation and alternative education
  • 6 Years as wilderness guide and mentor in various situations and projects
  • Broad knowledge and practice using liberation pedagogy and other alternative teaching methods
  • Deeply rooted in Hebrew tradition, honoring the indigenous in all of us
  • MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership and Management

A Practitioner of Earth Skills

  • Lifelong passion for nature, spirit
  • Experienced wilderness guide, by canoe, ski, sailboat, foot and more
  • High-level archer, whitewater canoe instructor, wood carver and more
  • Extensive training and practice with herbalism, foraging wild foods and nutrition
  • Able to lead workshops in woodcarving, basketry, hide tanning and much more
  • Skilled natural builder, architect of outdoor kitchens, cob building, tree houses, and more

Se Habla Español

You can also read more about Baruch in this great article in the Tablet Magazine

More of the full story

Guided from a young age by visions and realizations of the fragility of the structures that hold up our society, Baruch was inspired to never stop the age-old childhood fascination with building forts in the woods. Inspired by his encounter with the Water of the Vine, after which this endeavor is named, he set off on a life-long quest to connect people with themselves, each other and the sacred Earth. By the time he was eight, deep in his backyard in small town Missouri, he had a fully functioning multi-room “fort” with a vented kitchen, benches, and more. PICTURE: Little Brian outside Carried by the desire to be able to support and thrive with community in the wilderness, he was naturally inspired by the opportunity to engage in progressively more extensive wilderness journeys with his camp in Minnesota, Camp Chippewa. PICTURE: On North Knife? On Rapids? Between canoeing in the Minnesota and Canadian wilderness in summers to exploring the banks of the Mississippi River through the rest of the year, he was afforded a deep connection with the natural world and the arena for his passions and curiosities to soar. PICTURE: Mississippi at Sunset At the age of 8, his mother, Karen Schwadron, was taken after a long battle with breast cancer. With a father for a dentist, and a surgeon for a grandfather, he was called to engage in continuing the battle with cancer both in his own life and in his ability to heal others. PICTURE: Mom Health became a primary focus in his life, and he entered on the path toward becoming a doctor. As a highly competitive wrestler in high school, he saw first-hand the potent effect that good diet had on health and he became intimately fascinated with nutrition and food. He also became increasingly aware, through dedicated research, of the potent effect that toxins and environmental factors had on health, cancer and otherwise. After high school, he participated in Rotary Youth Exchange, and had the good fortune to spend a year living with families in Peru. PICTURE: Familia y yo en Tacna Among many things, his passions in health were afforded several amazing opportunities while there: First, he was able to arrange that he could work in hospitals and attend medical school classes while there. This meant that he was able to build on his knowledge of the human body with everything from learning stitches, injections, and EKG’s to performing appendectomies, skin grafts and even aiding in the delivery of several babies! PICTURE: Doing an apendectomy All of this left him knowing that he was not only able but excited to pursue the dream of becoming a doctor ad bringing such healing throughout his life. Meanwhile, the second thing that happened that year in Peru, was an undeniable chain of synchronicity which landed him on the doorsteps of a healer deep in the Amazon. He was then initiated and spent several weeks in intensive training of worldview and practices of a Shamanic village healer. PICTURE: Peru medicine, Don Juan? Ceremony room? Something? The teachings that he gained under the canopy of the Amazonian rainforest would slowly percolate into his mind over the following years as he continued on the path toward medical school, and, ultimately help him to wrestle with the harsh reality that medical school was neither the best path for his spirit, nor his ability to perform healing for others on this sacred planet. Those following years, he created a concentration at the University of Michigan titled Cultural Medicine. As part of this, he continued studying medicine, looking at various healing modalities and, particularly, apprenticing with indigenous healers in many communities and villages the world over. He meanwhile looked at the anthropological, sociological and spiritual environments of how those healers’ practices were changing with globalization. As he traveled to apprentice with healers, and engaged in research on the socio-cultural and political environments around their practices, he also brought together local indigenous communities to collectively dream in what could be done to help everyone work together in order to meet their own, self-identified needs more effectively. From this mission, with his best friend from high school, Jon Lindberg, he started a non-profit organization called For All Humanity, working to connect people around the world through cooperative service efforts in a vision of sustainable peace and hope. PICTURE: Jon at Art Fair in Honduras Over the years, he gained more and more group facilitation experience as well as knowledge of international issues of justice and communal collaboration. Baruch and For All Humanity went on to aid in the empowerment of communities across more than 14 countries around the world through dedicated projects, and 14 more through “informal” projects. Working mostly with farmers, squatters (landless land seekers), and neighborhoods in general, operating with no budget, the organization saw the lives, food systems, healing beliefs, childcare, water systems, waste systems, crime and safety reduce in inspiring projects designed by local communities the world over. PICTURE: Working with community in Kenya On the request of increasing numbers of volunteers and individuals wanting to get involved and do similar community empowerment work, he developed a service-learning year-long program of For All Humanity, engaging similar people as would normally engage in Peace Corps, but with a focus on more horizontal relationships with communities, sustainability of projects and end-dates of involvement. At the same time, Baruch traveled by working for various international service-learning organizations facilitating eye-opening and life-changing experiences for people of all ages. He began to mentor teenagers as well as adults in interacting cross-culturally for the empowerment and resiliency of all involved. PICTURE: With group in Thailand? While continuing to study health and healing, it became clearer and clearer that the conventional medical path (specifically, medical school) would not be the best path for his future nor the future of the communities in which he would hope to spend his life. Yet, he continued to apprentice with indigenous shamanic healers around the world, while also playing rugby, soccer and learning cooking styles around the world. He plans to continue cooking yummy food and playing good active sports the rest of this days. That, after all, is good health-care. PICTURE: Ali Kisumende PICTURE: Rugby in Kenya PICTURE: Food from Kenya? After nearly 7 years of international community-building and service-learning work, it was time to engage in graduate education in order to help For All Humanity function even better. At the School for International Training, now the SIT Graduate Institute, Baruch attained a Master’s Degree focusing on international education, social justice and non-profit management. Among many enlightening conversations with experienced and passionate peers and teachers, which helped to further highlight the effects of international development work that For All Humanity had worked so hard to mitigate, Baruch saw the need to reconsider working internationally and began to think about more local methods. He switched paths on the surface, and essentially delved deeper by uniting his passions for education and empowerment of youth and communities with his passion for wilderness by shifting his focus from international education and community building to wilderness education. For his practicum, he led twelve 15-20 year-old brave youth on a 600 mile journey by ski and canoe across Vermont and back with a magnificent organization called Kroka Expeditions. PICTURE: Kroka with group After those 8 months in the wilderness with Kroka, he started living in the woods near SIT, helping to start community gardens, trading wild mushrooms from the woods at Farmer’s Markets, and writing his thesis on the role of alternative education systems, specifically wilderness education, in cultivating healthy, resilient communities. This all strengthened his awareness that earth-based learning and teaching is where is next chapter of life work lay. By invitation from the greatly wise, thoughtful and kind Matityahu Av Shalom Cooper, Baruch dipped into the Jewish Environmental Movement by working with the TEVA Learning Center for several months before heading to Kroka. While there, the connections between his evolving practice of his heritage and people (Hebrew) and his work with wilderness education began to root in his mind and reality. One day, a powerful realization came to him through a teacher and mentor, Frank Cook. Frank is an incredible human who touched many lives the world over helping people to see the food and medicine all around them in the plants. PICTURE: Frank Cook Meeting him was incredibly powerful, as Baruch and Frank sat in a teepee (partially due to Frank not feeling well) for days, Frank was essentially “downloading” information on life and death, teaching and learning, mentors and mentees, and everything in between. They also realized, unbelievably, that they shared many of the same obscure mentors and healers from remote corners of the Earth. They had been in the same places (sometimes at the same times!) for years, and were finally meeting. Baruch knew at once he had found a life-long mentor and partner in his journey of strengthening people in their holy connection with this scared Earth. Please explore the website he started, carried on in his honor: Plants and Healers Sadly, two weeks after this powerful encounter and “download,” Frank unexpectedly passed away, leaving a community across the world stunned, saddened and wondering. Yet, in the following 6 months, at places as varied as Eden Village Camp, in rural North Carolina on the Topsy Turvy Bus, and in rural Vermont, Baruch had totally distinct people come up to him and thank him for “carrying on Frank’s work/legacy!” Two of these did not even know that Baruch and Frank had met! This incredible occurrence happening three times was a clear sign to Baruch that it was high time to dive fully into his study of healing and herbal medicine. It was time to get even more serious in returning the main focus of his time and effort into further learning with plants. He signed up for the California School of Herbal Studies in Forestville, CA for an 8-month intensive study of Herbal Medicine. PICTURE: Looking at Monument Plant The following several years he has continued studying and apprenticing with various healers in California and beyond, including the year-long certificate program with Candice Canton and the Evergreen School of Herbal Medicine on Clinical Herbalism deep in the Sierra Mountains. He has since been offering health consultations informally to family and friends across the country and world. After years of practice, it is now time to offer them more broadly to the public and to you! Healthcare for all! And true to the teachings of the healer that initiated him, it is all on a suggested donation basis, trades encouraged(payment page). He has also been practicing his healing by operating a catering business, incorporating healing herbs into his carefully planned culinary experiences through Hearth Healing Foods (www.hearthhealingfoods.com) since 2011. PICTURE: Cooking He also has been working with Wilderness Torah(www.wildernesstorah.org) by catering the festivals as well as helping as Lead Mentor of the groundbreaking Jewish rite-of-passage program, B’Naiture, in which 10-13 year-old youth engage in wilderness skills, edge experiences and self-reflection over two years of mentorship, culminating in a final rite-of-passage ceremony. The program is growing substantially and influencing more and more amazing youth and parents alike. PICTURE: Working with Ben Water of the Vine is the next step in this sacred journey through which Baruch wants to invite you in! Let us all engage in connecting with ourselves, each other and the Earth! Welcome to Water of the Vine!