When I was asked as a young adult what I wanted to do with my life, I confidently replied, “I don’t know what I want to do, but I certainly know what I don’t want to do…be a teacher or go into the medical field!”
And here I sit, some 25 years later, a homeschooling mother and an herbalist. Sometimes the journey we are on takes an unexpected turn in the road and we find ourselves in a place we never dreamed of being. While I still wouldn’t want to teach in a school or practice medicine in a hospital, the Lord has brought me on a path of both teaching and healing that could have only been found in Him.
I first became interested in herbs almost 15 years ago when a friend suggested I use garlic capsules to treat one of my children’s minor illness. After experiencing positive results, I was drawn to the wonder of herbs. I began to study and research and be continually amazed at how awe-inspiring the plant world truly is.
God has provided through His creation, plants that can be used to heal and nourish our bodies. He has given us plants to ease our pain, plants to bind up wounds, and plants to calm our nerves. Until we leave this world and experience true healing, He has given us a gift to ease the burdens on our earthly bodies.
Over the years, I have continued to study and learn more about herbs and their uses (see below for my herbal education). Learning herbal medicine is both an art and a science. It can be tempting to read the herbals and the data, plug in the patient information, and pick out the remedy. Thankfully, herbalism is so much more than that.
Yes, the scientific side can be validating to those that feel they need validation. We can marvel at how perfectly the Lord orchestrated each detail in the plant to perfectly align with the needs of mankind.
The the art of herbalism, however, is where we can experience the fullness of this gift. Herbs delight our senses as we look on their beauty, take in the sweet aroma, feel their texture, and taste their goodness. We can put our hands into the soil and cultivate their growth. We can drink in the steaming teas and we are aware of their actions on our body.
Becoming an herbalist is more than just reading a book and learning which herbs fix which problem. If that were the case, we would be little more than allopathic doctors, exchanging synthetic drugs for their botanical counterparts. And honestly, this does happen.
But herbalism has so much more to offer. Even the process of growing and harvesting the plants and preparing the herb medicine has great therapeutic benefits. Herbal medicine is a holistic approach to stewarding the body. Herbal medicine does not treat the disease the person has, it seeks to restore the person who has a disease.
Introduction to Aromatherapy by Jade Shutes
Herbal Medicine for Women Clinical Herbalist Course by Aviva Romm
Eclectic School of Herbal Medicine Community Herbalist Program by Thomas Easley
Eclectic School of Herbal Medicine Clinical Nutrition by Thomas Easley
The Theory and Application of Traditional Western Herbalism by Matt Wood, Jim McDonald, and Thomas Easley
Herbal Pharmacology by Guido Masé
Clinical Skills: Intakes, Patterns, and Interventions by Paul Bergner
Insulin Resistance by Paul Bergner
Herbal First Aid by 7Song
Taste of Herbs by Rosalee de la Foret
Anatomy and Physiology for Herbalists by Tammi Sweet
Herbal Constituents by Lisa Ganora
Herbmentor classes by Heather Nic an Fhleisdeir, Rosalee de la Foret, Jim McDonald, 7Song
Naturally Healthy Community Herbalist Course by Shonda Parker