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We discovered a great tutorial for people who are interested in herbalism and looking for some simple, memorable and yet ingenious uses for herbs: The page (from EcoSalon.com) lists 20 awesome uses of 10 of the most popular herbs. Link is at the foot of my commentary.
Although the tutorial itself is fairly simple, there is actually a hidden depth of herbal knowledge in it. The writer knows their stuff.
Hidden depth…. ahh, this phrase is getting me thinking about some deeper ideas related to herbalism.
Did you know that there are thousands of herbs altogether? The American Herbal Products Association’s “Herbs Of Commerce” (2nd ed.) lists 2048 separate species of plants that have current and historical use as therapeutic agents in the USA. As far as I know, the AHPA’s list may not include species that have had local use in remote parts of the world and have thus not been introduced in the USA – so the actual number may be much higher!
There is no way to know everything about all of them. It’s just too much to know. So, often, a herbalist will pick one plant at a time to investigate in great depth, gradually learning a huge amount about it until they are said to have “mastered” the use of that plant. The plant they choose is typically one that they feel a strong connection to. They will learn to grow it and observe its behavior through several seasons; to harvest it; to make herbal recipes with it and so on.
Mastery of one plant will then assist with mastery of another.
A good way to get started with all this is to “tune in” to the herbs, and see which ones hold a strong attraction to you. Some herbalists will say that a plant may be “calling you” – and that you should follow the call. I personally think that the plants do have a remarkable consciousness that we are perhaps barely aware of: And that if we listen to them, they may guide us and reveal their secrets. If you listen to the teachings of some indigenous healers, they will say something similar: That the plants themselves spoke to them and guided them.
This part of our deep intuition is something that is too-often ignored in the very logical, analytical modern age. Now being analytical is great, but I do believe that there is treasure to be found in the deep world of the intuition. And come to think of it, isn’t it an astonishing piece of hubris to assume that human beings are the only things in the known universe that are “fully conscious” – and that everything else is simply less smart than us. Why have we come to the conclusion that consciousness is not present in all living things, only in our brains?
It’s all interesting stuff. Why not see if you can “tune in” to the plants? If you do feel a great love and affinity for a certain herb, why not choose to learn as much about it as you can?
We’ll help! 🙂
Now – it turns out that all 10 of the herbs mentioned in the EcoSalon post correspond to herbs that we have run full ‘feature length” articles on!
So what I suggest is this: Read the list of 20 uses of 10 herbs (link below) and then if you feel a really strong interest and pull towards any of the herbs, investigate our page where you can learn about it in depth.
Here are the links to our pages about the 10 everyday herbs:
And here is the link to the full list of 20 Unusual Uses For Everyday Herbs: http://ecosalon.com/20-unusual-uses-for-everyday-herbs/
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