As I mentioned the other week, I’ve been busy lately editing the Herbstalk blog lately, but as we head into the final couple of weeks before the Herbstalk Festival - and you know you want to go don’t you! Heck, I’m teaching there so it’s almost a must! ;-) So I thought that each week, I’d reprint one of my posts from the Herbstalk blog here. Here’s one I did in February called – Herbal Madness! Enjoy…
Stop! Step away from those herbs…yes, I mean you. I know this is a blog for an herbal festival and so it is all about herbalism, but I just want to make the case for not taking herbs – at least every once and a while. ;-)
It is pretty easy to get in the habit of always incorporating all the wonderful plant friends into our daily lives – teas, tinctures, capsules, etc. But sometimes I think it is good just to take a break once and a while from them all.
Too often, we tend to think of ourselves as static instead of dynamic. When in fact, we change from year to year, season to season and even day to day as our world changes, our lives change and even the weather changes.
I find it helpful to take a break from time to time and see what is truly going on in your body. What changes have happened? Is there a new normal? Sometimes you can more profoundly recognize the effects of different herbs and what different combination are having on you when you aren’t taking them.
Taking a break and when you’re done – trying a new herb or re-visiting one that you never really connected with before can be a powerful experience. And one always worth exploring. You may find a new herbal best friend or re-visit a long lost one! More importantly, you may learn something about yourself in the process.
One of the hazards of plant love is that we can begin to see the world through narrowed “herbal” colored glasses. Just like that old piece of wisdom, Maslow’s hammer – if all you do is hammer than everything looks like a nail. You can see yourself, family, friends and customers and clients no longer as full individuals but as nails requiring an herbal hammer.
I see it all the time on line in places like Facebook, when a simple observation about a momentary mood, event in day, physical ache, pain etc. – invokes a torrent of “herbal” fixes from my many online herbal friends.
I generally just smile, roll my eyes and think “bless their well-meaning hearts”, but sometimes things just are and they pass. It is part of living life, impermanence and being. Trying to “fix” things through herbs can be just as bad as the over-medicating that seems to be an epidemic in mainstream Western medicine.
Herbs: feel free to use and love them. Share that love with others.
But take a break from time to time to be not so attached. Then you can learn more about yourself and others while remembering to truly see people and be with them and not just see objects to be “herbaled.”
Just my own insane .02