an idea about plants that you've never considered + 2 Time Sensitive Events
Hello Plant Lovers,I was reading a new book yesterday when it sparked an idea in me. It's one of those 'you'll look at the world differently afterwards' kinds of ideas. I immediately put the book down and started writing this.Before I get into that though, I want to make sure that you know about these 2 events happening next weekend...#1 - is actually not an herb thing, though it is a healing thing. It's actually a day-long marketing workshop, a great marketing workshop! It's being offered in Vancouver next weekend by a colleague and teacher of mine, Tad Hargrave of Marketing for Hippies.I've done this day-long workshop with him and found it incredibly valuable. Largely because of what I've learned from him, I don't feel icky or conflicted about my marketing. (If you've been following my work for a while, I trust you've seen a improvement over the last 5 years.)Tad is leading a couple of day long, pay-what-you-want (at the very end) marketing workshops designed just for holistic practitioners, permaculture folks, life coaches etc. It's focused on how to get more of the kinds of clients you're looking for in a way that feels good to all involved. They're happening November 2 & 3 (you choose). For more info or to register you can go to: http://marketingforhippies.com/events/#2 - is regarding the Herbal Integration Course moving to the Nelson area.In the last 5 years, my most successful herbal training program, the Herbal Integration Course, has been helping empower Vancouverites by transforming their relationships with plants as food and medicines. 70+ people now have built their own herbal medicine cabinets entirely from scratch. And they know how, when and where to use them. This in-depth, 7 month course has moved to the Nelson area. And starting next Spring (April 2015), the new Kootenay School of Herbal Medicine will be offering the Herbal Integration Course with some amazing mountain medicines. (Arnica, Osha and St. John's Wort, for example)Anyway, the Very Early Bird Discount is Nov. 1st and saves you $300. So, if you're in the West Kootenays or know someone who is, please pass this on to them. Honestly, this transition from the big city of Vancouver to small town Nelson has me a bit nervous about filling this class, that's why I'm offering a big discount AND why I'd really, really love your support in spreading the word. Here's what one person said about the course...
“I simply never knew how much I loved plants until the Herbal Integration Course brought them into focus as allies, healers, delectables, and tools for the regeneration of the earth and our relation to it.” Adam Huggins, HIC 2012
You can read more here --> Herbal Integration Course 2015 in NelsonIf it feels like a good fit for you, fill out the application and we'll chat to make sure.Ok, let's get to this cool idea..Have you ever considered what the meaning of a specific plant is? It's a strange question, I know. It's kind of a confusing way to word it. Let me ask it a different way. Have you ever considered the function of a plant?Chances are this makes more sense.Ok, let me try again. I know that you've asked yourself this question. What's the medicine of this plant? This is most common way that people relate to herbal medicine."What can this plant do for me?" It's what drives us to learn about herbs. Or is it?It's an important to remember here that the question always frames the answer. And while this question is entirely understandable (I do it too), it's a little short sighted. You can actually see a greater horizon that will answer this question and much more. You just need to ask the right question.As you may have guessed, I'm proposing that asking about the meaning of a plant allow you to see that greater horizon. It will answer the questions of its function and its chemistry, as well as its personality and its healing capacities.I'll explain with an example...If I ask you, what's the medicine of salt water? You might think of its cleansing power, either to disinfect wounds or as an epsom salt bath for drawing out toxics.And if I ask, what is the function of salt water? You may think of the ocean or, if you've ever made sour kraut, you'll think of brine (salt water). And you'll know that the function of the brine is to create the environment for "positive" bacteria to grow. And if I ask, what's the meaning of salt water? Well, this is still sort of confusing, isn't it.If you're a scientist, you might measure the quantities of sodium, carbon, trace minerals, etc. You might be able to extrapolate (guess) about the meaning of the salt water.But, if you're a poet, you might think of tears and change the question... what's the meaning of tears?Ah finally, a question that makes more sense. But wait, it also brings up more questions to get at the specific meaning. Did you know that the chemical make up of your tears changes depending on why you're crying? So when you cry from heart ache, from deep gratitude, or from physical pain, you make different kinds of tears with different chemicals.If you analyze the chemicals, you miss the context. You'll miss the meaning.Your tears are an emotional expression of your reality, they're a response to the specific context of your life at that moment. They're a communication that flows from you out into the world.(here's the big finish...) Plants are just like tears. Every chemical they make is a communication, a response to a specific set of conditions. But rather than an emotional context, it's about sun, rain, soil, bugs, etc. Every chemical is a communication with the ecosystem that the plant calls home.This means that every teeny-tiny chemical in a plant has a meaning! And it means that my high school (and then university) chemistry teacher lied to me. He said that "a vitamin C is a vitamin C whether it's in an orange or from a lab."This is why he was absolutely wrong.It's not that there's no meaning in the laboratory chemicals, it's that the meaning is only understandable to your intellect and not your body. Your body has the capacity to understand the meaning of chemicals created by plants. Plants speak a language that is understood by the ecosystem inside your gut, probiotics, and outside your body.There's obviously much more that I could unpack here. This is one of the foundational paradigms for all of my herbal teaching and healing work.I'd love to hear your comments. Please add your thoughts below. I'm interested to hear how this lands.strength and wisdom.garliqPS. Tad's not paying me anything for telling y'all about his workshop. I share because he's helped me a lot and I know there are some self employed folks on this list who could benefit from his teaching. I've actually just signed up to a 30 day course that also starts next week.PPS. The guy who wrote the Water Crystal Books, Masaru Emoto, just recently passed away. If you don't know him, here's the nutshell... he exposed jars of what to various stimuli and then froze them. His books show pictures of incredible crystal patterns, each one different depending on what it was exposed to. Mozart-exposed water makes different patterns than Bach, rock'n'roll, or the blues.I bring this up to honour and remember a visionary who changed how many of us see/know/understand the world. (I only wish he had done it with plant waters! I'll bet water from an aloe looks different than a peppermint plant.)Click here for a short video about his work.