Lesson 1 - Foundation - The Way of the Wild Heart, Opening Our Wild Hearts to the Healing Herbs, The Heart as an Organ of Perception, Choosing an Herbal Ally, Sacred Plant Medicine, Earth Awareness, Women's History, Great Goddess, Shamanism, Reclaiming our Traditions, Plants and Spirituality.3 YEAR COMMUNITY HERBALIST TRAINING PROGRAM - New class begins November 2012
Lesson 2 – All life, and therefore health, springs from the ground. Introduction to Organic Herb Gardening – The life of the soil, nourishing the soil, seed planting and plant harvesting according to phases of the moon, concepts and practices of permaculture, compost, sheet mulching, weeding and cultivation, the importance of pollinators and planting specific plants and trees to attract them to the garden, Spring Tonics, Basic Botany for Herbalists.
Introduction to Materia Medica runs concurrently with the following 4 Medicine Making lessons and continues throughout the remainder of the course.
Lesson 3 – Protecting our Herbal Heritage - Harvesting and Processing Herbs - Wildgathering with reverence and respect, ground rules and considerations, techniques for properly drying herbs, appropriate storage. What to look for when purchasing dried herbs. Herbal Medicine Making, part 1 – pills, pastiles, powders, suppositories, washes, baths, poultices and compresses. Delivery, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 4 – Medicine making, part 2 - Water Based Medicines - effective preparation techniques and choosing which herbs to prepare as teas, infusions, decoctions, syrups, meads and fermented beverages, the healing properties of honey & yeasts, herbal water baths, spiritual bathing. Delivery methods, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 5 - Spirit Based Medicines - Making herbal tinctures in alcohol, vinegar and glycerin, using both fresh and dried plant material and experimenting with different preparation methods, how to choose the most effective menstrum and ratios based on plant constituents, decanting and storage, dosages, delivery methods, contraindications.
Lesson 6 - Oil Based Medicines - making infused oils from fresh and dried plant material, cautious use of essential oils, aromatherapy, making salves, butters, lotions and creams. The skin is our largest organ of assimilation. Herbal skin care. Rashes, itches, skin afflictions and herbs that address them.
Lesson 7 - Plant chemistry – Herbal constituents and actions, terminology of the herbalist, tastes and herbal energetics, the Vitalist or Natural approach to healing, choosing appropriate herbs to treat the whole person, introduction to case study work.
Lesson 8 - Laying the Groundwork of Nourishment - Nourishing Ourselves to Optimum Health & Vitality, Vitamins & Minerals - well developed information on each vitamin and mineral, the importance of each, what they do, where to find them, specific herbs and foods that offer them, how to recognize and overcome vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
Lesson 9 - The Digestive System - Physiology and Pharmacology, what foods and herbs do we consume to support over-all digestive health and vitality and how are they best prepared. In-depth examination of the role the digestive process plays in our health. Planning and executing a health supportive dietary regime. Digestive fire. Vital essence. Bitters. Food allergies.
Lesson 10 - The Reproductive System - Physiology and Pharmacology, Herbs for Women's Health, Herbs for Men's Health, fertility & reproduction, PMS, menopause/andropause, hormonal chemistry, choosing herbs that nourish, strengthen, tone and balance these systems, delivery methods, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 11 - The Nervous System & Brain, Physiology and Pharmacology, Nervines and Restoratives, herbs to nourish, strengthen and tone the nervous system, herbs to alleviate stress, anxiety, depression, addressing addiction and brain chemistry imbalances, herbal antidepressants as alternatives to Prozac, etc., Herbs for Mind and Spirit. Delivery methods, dosages and contraindications.
Lesson 12 - Chronic and Acute Pain, Physiology and Pharmacology, herbs that relieve pain, applications, dosages and contraindications.
Lesson 13 - The Immune and Lymphatic System, Physiology and Pharmacology, herbal antibiotics, herbs, roots, lichen, fungi that enhance immunity, move lymph fluids, methods of delivery, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 14 – The Endocrine System - Physiology and Pharmacology. Adaptogens - the importance of understanding the uses of this unique class of herbs, adaptogens as a bridge between the immune, nervous and glandular systems, their importance in increasing metabolic efficiency and reducing susceptibility to illness and disease. Homeostasis and the effects of adaptogens on the whole body/mind/spirit. Delivery methods, dosages and contraindications.
Lesson 15 - The Skeletal and Muscular Systems - Physiology and Pharmacology, choosing herbs to support, heal and maintain strong bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons and ligaments throughout life. The role of exercise in maintaining the health of our skeletal and muscular frame. Delivery methods, dosages and contraindications.
Lesson 16 - The Excretory System - Physiology and Pharmacology, choosing appropriate herbs to support and maintain the health of the kidneys and bladder, homeostasis, maintaining the balance between acid, water and salt base of the blood, the role of the kidneys in hormonal production, herbal delivery methods, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 17 – Heart, Lungs & Circulation System - Physiology and pharmacology, transporting blood, water, oxygen, carbon dioxide, nutrients, and waste throughout the body. Choosing appropriate herbs to support, nourish, strengthen and heal the heart, nourish the blood and blood vessels, lungs, air passageways, throat, mouth, and nasal passages. Delivery methods, dosages, contraindications.
Lesson 18 - Council of the Herbal Allies – Organs and Body Systems Review. Materia Medica Review. Earth Songs Heal Her - Initiation and Commencement
Hello dear, sweet, precious Gail! Words cannot even come close to expressing the amount of gratitude and appreciation I hold in my heart for you and all that you are contributing to the world with your work. You have managed to create a container in which women like myself are able to grow in awareness, expand in knowledge and share in selflessness the gift of themselves. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
It has been an immense pleasure studying under your guidance. You have always been so patient and understanding, yet firm and demanding at the same time - a perfect balance of the two. I am blessed to have come across your school and I hope that someday I will continue my studies with you at the Blessed Maine Herb Farm. With much love and respect,Anna"
Correspondence Course Refund Policy: There are no refunds or cancellations accepted once materials are sent.
The most basic health care provided around the world for all human beings through all ages is primary health care. Primary care is non-specialist health care and America is now in the midst of a primary health care crisis.
Community Herbalists are in the unique position to make a meaningful contribution to human culture at the local level in these turbulent times. Some of the ways we can do this is by supporting healthy choices, providing herbal education, focusing on preventive health care and offering affordable, ecologically sound, herbal alternatives to pharmaceutical drugs to the people within our local communities.
The Community Herbalist Program focuses on providing the student with a wide array of herbal and other solutions to many common primary care needs of human beings from birth through death and the guidance needed to present these solutions in a broad community context. The emphasis is on total family/community wellness and includes not only the physical body, but our minds, hearts and spirits as well.
The first year and a half of study for the Community Herbalist Program is the Herbal Medicine Correspondence Course which lays the foundation for the work that follows. (Details and complete lesson plan are outlined above.) This course takes a full 18 months to complete and serves as the first half of the three year program.
The second phase of the 3 year Community Herbalist program focuses on the work of deepening our knowledge and connection with the plants, and the wise use of the medicines made from them, and applying this knowledge directly within the family and community.
A major focus of the following year and a half of study will be on broadening your herbal and healing experience, knowledge and confidence in such ways that include being able to share it in meaningful ways in schools, clinics, hospitals, prisons, learning centers, holistic healing centers, community groups, your own organized classes and doing personal work with individuals seeking herbal education and support (consultations).
Upon completion of the first 18 months study program, you will receive an extensive reading list with both suggested and required reading that will keep you inspired and diligently engaged during the rest of the program. Each month or so you will choose at least one book from the various sections of the list, keep detailed notes on the reading material and compose a report which will be emailed to me.
You are required to submit 12 book reports of at least 1,000 words in length during the following 18 months, or second phase of the program. I will respond with comments and notes and your report will then be shared with the rest of your class. Monthly reports and updates on your work as well as student-teacher interaction are required.
The work you began with case study assessment in Lesson 7, during phase one of the program, will continue during the second phase of the Community Herbalist Program, which moves you more deeply into practical field work. We will work together closely via email and our private class forum while you work with at least 3 individuals for a total of three months each. Detailed initial case study reports and thoroughly documented follow up work will be required for each of the three case studies. This work runs concurrently with the book reports submitted and circulated for review.
During the last six months of the program you will design and implement a plan for introducing yourself to your community as a Community Herbalist. You may choose to work in a clinical setting, an alternative healing center, present a series of classes at a local school, initiate an herbal column for a local newspaper or regional magazine, help create a community herb garden, launch your own herbal business, or any number of projects that relate herbal medicine to your community at large.
During the summer of your final year of study you will be required to attend Community Herbalist Weekend (2014) and deliver a one hour presentation to those in attendance. Your summation and commencement will take place at that time.
Successful graduates of this program will be thoroughly prepared to enter the health field as a practicing Community Herbalist. You will be awarded a Certificate of Completion stating you have completed a 3 year Community Herbalist Program at the Blessed Maine Herb Farm School of Herbal Medicine under the guidance of Gail Faith Edwards.
The 3 year Community Herbalist Program includes the 18 lesson Herbal Medicine Correspondence Course, books and materials, 18 months of four or five webinars each month, for a total of approximately 65-72 audio classes, extensive second phase reading list, on going correspondence, feedback, mentoring, review and guidance from me for full three years, two on-site 3 day weekend study sessions and a Certificate of Completion when you finish the 3 year Community Herbalist Program.
The fee for the 3 year Community Herbalist Program is $3,900. A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required to hold your place for the 3 year Program. Payment schedules are available. The payment of $1,850 for the Herbal Medicine Correspondence Course is deducted from this fee.
"I have learned so much from you Gail. You are truly a wonderful teacher and healer. Thank you so much for being in my life. You are doing great things for others and have truly put your mark on Mother Earth. Many Blessing to you."
OUR LADY OF THE GREEN; RE-WEAVING PLANT WISDOM, MEDICINE STORIES AND THE FEMININE DIVINE
I'm excited to offer this exceedingly well received webinar course as a series of 13 mp3 recordings - Our Lady of the Green - Reweaving Plant Wisdom, Medicine Stories and the Feminine Divine. I'd love for you to participate in what I promise to be a life altering and deeply soul nourishing experience!"You are the most gifted and influential teacher I have ever known."
This 13 week series of webinar classes will present a historical perspective on women’s spirituality, explore the roots of the Divine Feminine, devotion to Mary in the 21st century, and examine in-depth the herbs and foods long associated with the Divine Feminine, Mary and the Mysteries of the Rosary.
Week 1 – In the Beginning – The past is our heritage. It is our roots and our sustenance. Knowing the true story of our past brings us nourishment through the ages. This knowledge opens up doors to us, presents us with a myriad of new possibilities. It connects us to our ancestors. This nourishing connection gives us the courage and strength we need to act in the present. It brings us clarity of purpose. Our prehistoric ancestors of the Paleolithic and Neolithic eras.
"I LOVE your class so far! You are amazing and have such a warm voice too! Thank you for creating this - it is an important source of wisdom for me at this time."
Week 2 –The Land of Milk and Honey – From Fruitful Mother of the Clan to the destruction of Divine Ancestress and the end of the matrilineal clan system. The Goddess Religions – the theological structures and universal features spread over large geographical areas – female kinship, rites and customs and the subsequent social restructuring. She Who Holds the Reigns of Kings, ritual drama, the dying god or consort and the grieving priestess/mother.
Week 3 – Symbols of Sacred & Prophetic Powers – Serpent/wise counsel, Sacred trees/communion. From Adam & Eve to the Prince of Peace. The Cumaen Sybil. The Feminine Face of God is shining from our faces.
Week 4 – Finding Mary – The continuing evolution of the Goddess. “Mary has a lineage; it is more than the lineage of the House of David. All Neolithic Goddess roads lead to Mary.” Great Mother - Queen of Heaven – The Triple Goddess – Mother of God. The Protestant Reformation and subsequent “de-throning of Mary.”
"Thank you, Gail! That was such an exhilarating talk. I was not raised Catholic, but I have been drawn to Mary in recent years, and I have a lovely little alabaster statue of Mary. I've always felt that she is a representation of not just the mother of Jesus, but of Kwan Yin and all of the other goddesses through time, just with another name. Thank you for your wonderful insight and wisdom." T.Schultz
Week 5 – Reclamation – Reclaiming a most important party of our Judeo-Christian heritage. The secret stories of plants, perceiving the wild heart of nature, gathering information directly from the Wild Heart of the Earth. Reading from the Book of Life. From the Songs of Solomon to the new physics. The transfer of ancient knowledge through association with plants. Acquiring true knowledge.
Week 6 – The Burning Times – Revisiting marea, strigae, lamiae and night spirits – witches and women shamanism. The Inquisition, Heinrich Kramer and The Malleus Maleficarium. The role of the local, secular tribunals, intellectuals, printed manuals and peasant participation. St. Joan of Arc.
Week 7 – The Mary Garden – The great body of wisdom accumulated through the ages regarding the wondrous earth goes underground. Gardens as devotional practice. Early Christian’s shamanic practices, the transference of ancient seasonal celebrations and local geographical goddesses into the evolving liturgical calendar. Queen of the May and the flowers/trees/shrubs long associated with the Feminine Divine. Planning and planting a Mary Garden.
"I just listened to the Mary Garden class again ... each time I listen, I get something new!"
Week 8 – The Angelic Psalter – The rosary is a string of beads used as an implement of prayer and meditation – it is a powerful tool for peace. Early history of prayer beads. Two simple and ancient prayers form the heart and soul of the rosary and their recitation leads us into the timeless sacred dance of our ancestors. How to Pray the Rosary – stepping into the mysteries of the Rosary as mythic ritual performance unfolding before our eyes. These mysteries contain the stories of our primeval theological truths, they are Medicine Stories. Prayer is a living tradition, praying for the earth community.
"What a lovely class! I love the rosary, but until now I have said "alternative" prayers. I have read books about the rosary but they all drown in "religious" terms and ideas. I really love how you present it Gail. Still traditional but in a new way. Thank you!"
Week 9 – The Sacred Mystery Stories – Examining each of the Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful and Glorious Mysteries and naming the traditional herbs, foods and medicines associated with each of them – The Sacred Wheel of Life.
Week 10 –Our Lady of the Green - Our Lady’s Florilegia – Teachings of the Herbs, Flowers and Trees of the Mysteries, Part 1 – The Joyful Mysteries – The Eastern quadrant of the wheel – Liliaceae and Lamiaceae plant families, Figs, poppies, chamomile – Hathor, Persephone, Demeter, Hera, St. Ann, Cybele, Ceres, Flora, Mary and the Assumption, the Eleusian Mysteries.
Week 11 – Teachings of the Herbs, Flowers and Trees of the Mysteries, Part 2 – The southern quadrant of the wheel – The Luminous Mysteries – Grains, grapes, fermented foods and beverages, Brassica family plants.
Week 12 – Teachings of the Herbs, Flowers and Trees of the Mysteries, Part 3 – The western quadrant of the wheel – The Sorrowful Mysteries – Olive, St. John’s wort, Aloe vera, Passionflower.
Week 13 – Teachings of the Herbs Flowers and Trees of the Mysteries, Part 4 – The northern quadrant of the wheel – The Rosaceae family of plants – Mary’s Emblem - Roses, hawthorn, apple, pear plum, cherry, strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, seaweeds.
This 13 week webinar course will begin Thursday, June 7 at 5:30 PM. A downloadable recording of each 1 hour class will be made available to students within minutes after the class. Those unable to attend the live webcast can listen at their convenience. An extensive reading list will be provided and suggested reading for individual classes will be offered but not required. Students will also receive links to YouTube videos and a weekly image album that relate to the course work and will enhance their experience.
A copy of Through the Wild Heart of Mary; Teachings of the 20 Mysteries of the Rosary and the Herbs and Foods Associated with Them will be sent via postal mail to each participant. This course will be life altering and soul nourishing. I welcome you to join us!
Course fee $175. There is a link at the bottom of this page where you can register.
257 Chapman Ridge Road
Athens, Maine 04912
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