Jun 062008

Up until this point, I’ve kept my terms of the trade series very short and to the point. I’m afraid that this post breaks that trend a bit, leaning more towards the long-winded. The thing is, bitters are some of our most effective and widely applicable medicines. They are also easy to come buy and [...]

Mar 192008

Don’t worry, we’ll get back to those Alterative differentials I promised sometime in the near future. For now let’s deal with an often misunderstood herbal action: astringency. In the most physical sense, astringents are those substances that tighten tissues on contact, resulting in that puckery mouth feeling so familiar to anyone who’s ever bitten into [...]

Feb 042008

In the simplest sense, alteratives are those herbs that restore function to the body by way of the metabolism, through increasing both eliminative functions and also through increasing the absorption of nutrients. While they effect the entire metabolism, they can be said to especially effect the kidneys, liver, lungs, skin, bowels and lymphatic system. Alteratives [...]

Jan 232008

In the process of becoming familiar with herbalism, it’s easy to feel confused by jargon that, while clearly obvious to those using it, tends towards being something of an insider’s tongue. This can cause beginners to feel alienated from group discussion that could be educational and intimidated by what should be common sense concepts. Because [...]

Sep 102007
Talking with Plants 2: Engagement and Immersion

For those of us who were taught, and came to accept, that the Universe is a machine, the journey back to wild water is a long one. We find our way one step at a time. -Stephen Buhner Down on our bellies on the grass, we take a flower’s view of the world — the [...]

Sep 102007
Talking with Plants: An Aside

Using Energy Moving Herbs for Connection, Presence and Groundedness In the last few years I’ve had various students, guests, blog-readers and the like confide in me that they’re unable to really “feel” the plants on an energetic level. That no matter how much they meditate, garden, guzzle tinctures or go to herb conferences, no matter [...]

Aug 302007
Talking With Plants 1: Opening

In the stillness I looked inside and saw the wound laid down within all of us… The wound that comes from believing we are alone amid dead uncaring nature. And then I took a breath and began to share stories of a time when the world was young, when everyone knew that plants were intelligent [...]

Aug 162007
Talking With Plants: The Prequel

Here we begin the Talking With Plants series of posts, but before we dig in I recommend reading Jason Godesky’s excellent blogpost called “Plants Are People, Too”. It’s an in-depth exploration of the ways plants communicate and feel, and their inherent personhood. He quotes Stephen Buhner as well as lots of recent and not so [...]