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Herbalism Heals People and Planet

Today, tucked quietly into the frozen winter ground is all the medicine we need to heal the ailments of our era. They are patient and ask nothing of life except please, do not disturb winters peace. They wait ready to expand into the warmth of the coming seasons, to share their beauty and transformative ability with the world. All they need is for the laws of nature to be respected and the simple balance of healthy living systems can be achieved.

Each month it fills us herbalists with such joy creating the Stillwater monthly and seasonal herb shares for local people in the area to pickup or to mail out across the country. These plant medicine care packages are created from traditional medicine systems that share the wisdom of how to stay healthy with the seasons.

We create a collection of herbs specifically to support the challenges in the environment and body related to the season in monthly or seasonal packages. Moistening and clearing the lungs in the fall, nourishing the kidneys and adrenals in the winter, detoxing the liver in the spring and supporting the heart in the summer. The depth of these systems of healing goes much deeper, such as details of how to lift the spirit in February to enhance the body's restorative capacity while preventing restlessness or the depth of winter despair...

Using plants as medicine not only supports symptom relief from illness, but also provides nourishment to generate greater health over time. It fosters an innate self-reliance and empowerment to have the knowledge of how to care for the body with nature's resources.

At Stillwater, we work to cultivate as many plant medicines from our Zen garden and our farm on Apple Valley just outside of Lyons, Colorado. The goal of utilizing biodynamic and permaculture farming systems is to build not only an abundance of healthy nutritional resources, but also to support the microclimate of our region. We strive to contribute to a better balance in the ecosystem.

Traditional medical systems span a timeframe of thousands of years of written details, many transferred from oral traditions of far greater history. The wisdom is built upon the observation from generation to generation of what worked in creating healthy individuals. The detailed documentation of seasonal influences and human health over such a tremendous timeframe is a phenomenal collection of data that provides an invaluable resource for those who choose to use it. Patterns in human health and patterns in climate factors have been observed with intricate detail. This helps us understand why one person will have a cold that progresses to pneumonia and another will sweat it out in a day. There is predictability in natural systems. Our ancient healing traditions have an understanding of this unlike any other field of study.

One of my absolute favorite experiences comes when I am working with an herb and take the time to dive into its history. Through the connection of plant families, many species are closely related even from separate sides of the Earth. Once I have known a plant well from one ancient system of medicine my curiosity drives me to look to see where else in the world did a similar plant grow. More often than not, indigenous peoples from separate sides of our Earth came to similar conclusions of how specific plants should be used and what ailments they treat. The plants and the people spoke the same message. It was not so much a discovery to claim but rather an existing relationship of mutual acknowledgement, available to those who listen.

That is how nature works. When anyone turns the corner to see a beautiful open view of a healthy landscape, the awe and wonder are there for all to know. Our lives are a collection of very personal experiences that we rely on our inner guidance to navigate. The relationship we each have with the world is a reflection of the relationship we have with ourselves. Coming to know what is true for ourselves requires us connecting to our true nature, as a living being in nature.

Share your life with plants, get to know some closely and learn how they can be allies to your challenges. Plants with medicinal value generally want to be useful. Having a mutually respectful relationship with humans is something they need in order to be valued and thrive.

Our mission with the Stillwater Community Supported Herbalism (CSH) program is to empower individuals to know how to live a healthy life. Like many CSH's, we endeavor to connect people to plant medicine to help awaken their inner truth and together, foster a relationship of reciprocity with the Earth. Please join us in this movement for people and planet to thrive!

~ Dr. Sara Hart

(Pictured below is an example of the collection of herbs and products from our October share).

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