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Natural Awakenings Metro Phoenix & Northern Arizona

Awakening Naturally to Herbalism: SW Herb's Kathleen Gould discusses how we are all drawn to nature and plants for healing

Nov 04, 2012 11:44AM ● By Kathleen Gould

Herbalists are taught to let nature be their teacher, and we are all awakening naturally to the remembrance that Earth is truly our mother and the source of life’s sustenance. We are beginning to hear her song again, and it so soothing to our weary souls. There is an inner knowing, a feeling when something is good and honest, or when a real truth is unfolding before us. This is the essence of herbalism—our connection to the Earth and her healing plants.

More and more people are drawn to herb shops, herb classes and out into nature as they hear the call of Mother Earth and begin to fan the ember of ancient knowledge. This is so empowering because it reminds us that we are the creators of it all—our lives, our communities and the health of our bodies. Although most of us have forgotten about the plants in a technological society, they have never forgotten us and are quietly waiting for our return, so they can help us to heal our hearts, our communities and our bodies.

We don’t even need to cut the plants to receive their healing miracles; we can simply sit out in nature or look at a flower and the healing begins to occur—we know it, we can feel it. We remember that we are now and always have been part of the body of Mother Earth.

Desert plants hold some of the most amazing healing properties, likely due to their harsh environment. Chaparral, for example, has a well-earned reputation as a strong antioxidant, blood purifier, anti-tumor agent, painkiller and antiseptic, and is one of the best herbal antibiotics available for major disease healing and rebuilding. It is a great detoxifying agent for chemicals and heavy metals. Chaparral is used in lymph-cleansing formulas for treating cancer, leukemia, melanoma and malignant tumors; as an anti-infective and antibiotic; in the treatment of arthritis and other acidic conditions such as acne and skin imbalances; as a liver and urethral tract cleanser; and the list goes on and on.

Now is the time to gently fan the ancient ember of knowledge and let our flame radiate out to the universe. Call on the Earth and the healing plants to help guide our way—this is their purpose and now all we need do is ask.

Herbalist Kathleen Gould, RH (AHG), is co-owner of SW Herb Shop & Gathering Place, 148 N. Center St., in Mesa. Contact her at 480-694-9931 or

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