HERBS, HEALTH, THE ELEMENTS & THE MOON CYCLES
An Herbal Course Series
Perceiving the world through the traditional western herbalist lens of the four elements allows us to find patterns and threads of relationships between ourselves, the foods we eat, the herbs we might take as medicines and all of nature around us. With this perspective, we are able to gain helpful insights into the body in illness and health as a matter of continually maintaining and/or restoring balance of the elements while we engage with the world day to day. The four elements in traditional western herbalism also correlate to the astrological wheel of the year.
In this series, I intend to follow the moon's movements through one cycle around the zodiac, highlighting each of the four elements as the moon passes through them. We will focus on the various manifestations of the elements within the body and mind, and within the plants that can support our health and nourishment. At the same time, we will focus on the various signs, elements and modes of the zodiac, and how they relate to us in various ways. We can then determine which plants might be most appropriate for us at particular times.
The series is divided into five parts. Participants are welcome to sign up for just one class, or you can take the entire series.
At each class we will focus on the steps involved in making a particular type of herbal medicine that addresses issues of imbalance within the element we're discussing. We'll learn to work with easily accessible herbs (kitchen herbs or those easily grown or found in the wild) in ways that maximize their medicinal benefits
Offered once a week via Zoom.
Thursday Evenings from 7-9 pm
February 11th New Moon in Aquarius---Intro the moon cycles, the elements & modes of the zodiac, and the ways that these relate to herbal medicines and foods.
February 18th Waxing Half Moon in Gemini, Sun in Pisces---Air Element & the Mutable Mode
February 25th Full Moon in Virgo---Earth Element
March 4th Waning Half Moon in Sagittarius---Fire Element
March 11th New Moon in Pisces--Water Element
Fee for the Full Series: $75 (HST included)
Fees for each Individual Class: $20 (HST included)
SIGN UP for the FULL SERIES
SIGN UP for the intro class
..or sign up for each individual class below...
CONTACT ME for more info or to make alternative payment arrangements
AIR Respiration, Digestion and Nervous System
Aquarius, Taurus, Gemini, Libra
February 11th & 18th
The air element relates to our breath, and as such, the respiratory system. It also has a strong resonance with our digestive health, as we will see. It is responsible for movement which we find in the wind, and the in/out breathing rhythm that keeps us alive. Wind also relates to that which we can not see, but which nevertheless has an effect on us. In the body, we find this in the nervous system and the brain, where the air element has a strong influence.
In this workshop we'll focus on these aspects of health, looking at herbs and foods that influence the digestive, respiratory and nervous systems, as well as other practices that engage with the air element to help bring it into balance.
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EARTH bones, skin, joints
Virgo, Capricorn, Taurus
February 25th 7-9 pm
The earth element relates to all the solid structures in the body. It is the part that takes up and holds nourishment so that the body's form and functions can be maintained. The earth element has a slow moving and sticky quality to it, resonating with foods and herbs that build and strengthen and burn slowly like fats and oils, grains, and also minerals. An excess of earth may manifest as excess weight and a slow or sluggish system. It generally calls for detoxification on some level. A healthy balance of earth element brings the wisdom of slow movement and thought, and the endurance to get through long and arduous tasks. Because the bones are strong representations of the earth element, any herbs or foods that are mineral rich and nourish the bones have strong earth element characteristics.
In this workshop we'll examine nourishing, mineral rich herbs that can help to build or restore bone health, support proper absorption of nutrients, and slowly but effectively clear out wastes.
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FIRE Immunity, Energy, Metabolism, the Heart
Sagittarius, Leo, Aries
March 4th 7-9 pm
The fire element rules the aspect of temperature in the body, resonating of course with heat, or lack thereof. Heat is an important form of energy for us, and it mobilizes our metabolism, our immune response, our motivation and our drive. Heat also influences our blood circulation, helping to ensure that all parts of the body are nourished and cleansed. Excess fire can lead to excessive immune response (as seen in inflammation and its associated pain). It can also produce excessive anger. Insufficient fire in the body can lead to slower metabolism, low energy and lack of motivation.
In this workshop we'll talk a lot about balanced immune responses versus over-active immunity. We'll look at pain and inflammation, and various ways that we can address these issues by bringing the fire element into balance within the body.
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WATER & The Fluids of the Body
Pisces, Cancer, Scorpio
The water element rules the fluids of the body, such as the blood, lymph, sweat, urine, synovial and cerebrospinal fluids. It is both a cleanser and a nourishing agent, softening the tissues so that they become more permeable and also helping to flush out wastes. Water has traditionally been associated with the emotions, which we see in the physical manifestations of tears, sweat, etc. Water is also the carrier of life, which we see in the waters of the womb. As such, the water element is very much involved in reproductive health. An excess of water element may show up in a runny nose during a cold, as the body tries to clear out pathogens. It may also show up as edema or other swellings. Issues related to the water element also manifest in the bladder and kidneys. In this class we'll look at herbs and foods that help to balance out the water element in the various systems of the body.
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