The 9th Annual PPMG
November 10th, 11th and 12th, 2017.
049 SW Porter St.
NUNM, the Naturopathic College
Class Descriptions for 2017
Baba Yaga's House
with Milla Prince
A Class on how and why the Witch is making a return in our age, the many historical and cultural connotations of the word and concept, and a discussion on how modern witches are part of an ancient lineage of people who live in the margins, see in the dark, and hear and speak in the voice of nature and the invisible world. We'll discuss the witch as a feminine power, a subversive voice, a "shaman", a political figure, and even a #trend.
with Milla Prince
This class delves into the mythology of trees as our ancestors, ancient deities, and living beings in their own right; all the while learning how to create beautiful, practical magic and medicine with them. Trees are often overlooked as a simple, easy-to-approach medicinal plants for those seeking to learn plant-knowledge. They are relatively easy to identify, rich in constituents, easy to harvest safely and sustainably, and they are a huge part of most of our ancestral plant medicine. Trees carry some of the oldest, most tangible magic on this Earth, literally giving us the breath of life.
Use What You Got: Working With a Limited Apothecary
with Missy Rohs
Many people, when starting their herbal journey, hear from their teachers that an experienced herbalist tends to rely on a small handful of herbs for almost everything. Besides that, there are many situations in which we only have a few plant medicines at hand. How do we work with a limited selection of healing herbs? This will be a fun, thoroughly participatory class in which students will work together to find creative ways to address common ailments, even when they don't have their favorite herbs to work with. Plant actions and energetics will be the common thread throughout the scenarios we create together.
The dark night of the soul: navigating the depths of the depressive state
with Rebecca Altman
The dark night of the soul is not just a period of sadness, but a period in which one’s entire life seems to fall apart around them: what is the meaning of any of it? When the complex structures we hold ourselves in place with start to unravel, what is left behind?
In this class, we’ll take a guided tour into the dark night, exploring it as one would a deep old cavern. We’ll look at why such crises come about; how to illuminate the way out; and what role plant medicine plays in this process.
Note: this class will discuss topics like depression, mental illness, and trauma.
The Ecology of Yin Deficiency: Exhaustion, Drought,+ a Sustainable Body
with Rebecca Altman
Yin Deficiency is a Chinese term for a state of existence that exists in the world, that we don’t have a word for (or even claim to recognize) in Western society. It is, however, very real. The same symptoms that seem to plague the planet as a whole also sweep through our culture and our bodies as individuals: exhaustion of resources, drought, absence of meaning, burnout. More importantly, a lack of recognition of the value in yin states: the slow, the sticky, the moist, dank, deep, wild.
In this class we’ll learn about Yin Deficiency from a western perspective: where it comes from, how we perpetuate it with our thoughts and actions, various herbs to help balance it out, and how to create a model, moving forwards, that helps to sustain and heal us as individuals and a society as a whole.
Cordials and Elixirs… Making Medicine and Magic
with Joyce Netishen
Cordials and elixirs have a long medicinal, mystical and magical history. Learn to create special potions that inspire health and vitality, strong spirit and beneficent presence within… and without. This class is about creating medicine with ceremony, intention and potential. It is not about constituents and ratios. We will create an elixir in the devotional spirit of the autumnal season. Please bring a clean 8 oz jar with you to be able to take your creation home.
Decolonizing Plant Medicine & Ourselves
with Jeevan Singh and Amy Keo
Some three hundred years ago, English Ivy was introduced to North America by the European colonists. Its propensity has been to wrap itself around plants, especially natives, suffocating them. There is a stark similarity between the characteristics of English Ivy in its ability to overtake and that of colonization. Colonization is devitalization. Decolonization works towards the liberation of all people.
This workshop seeks to investigate a series of questions, such as: Who does plant medicine belong to? What are the plant medicine traditions of my people? Have my people’s traditions ever been threatened, taken or discarded? Have I ever threatened, taken or disregarded another people’s traditions or my own? What is needed to work towards vitalization and liberation, and how can we learn this from plants?
What the Desert Knows: A love letter to the lessons, medicine, and magic of the Sonoran Desert
with Carla Vargas-Frank
The desert's rough and often unforgiving landscape has much to teach us about life, stamina, and preserving one's physical and spiritual energy. It's wide horizons and portent plant medicines teach us about the vastness of our own hearts and what it means to be soft, even while wearing a coat of armor. This class will explore the many ways in which place can inform our lives and practice and will discuss some of the plant medicines that can assist us on our path of embodied healing.
Putting Together a Case/Client Work
with Karyn Sanders
In this class we will look at how to understand what has been presented to you in an intake. how to pull together all aspects and decide on a plan of healing. this class will be taught from a native perspective. level: intermediate to advance.
Working with Trauma from a Native Perspective
with Karyn Sanders
We will be looking at what is trauma, where is it in the body and how to heal from truama. we will look at energetic levels in the body and use some practical tools for everyday life. herbs and flower essences will be covered if there is time.
Loving Fiercely in Time of Turmoil
with Sarah Holmes
Come explore the ways the plants can support us in our work, both personal and political. We will look at the importance of staying connected to our hearts and discuss strategies for self-care that keep our activism sustainable.
with Sarah Holmes
Loss is a part of life and yet, we often don’t take the time to honor those losses and allow that grief to move through us. We’ll discuss herbs that can support us in our grieving process, whether a new or old loss, and strategies for getting unstuck.
Powerful Herbal Pairs
with Paul Bergner
The basis of good herbal formulation is a study and understanding of pairs and triplets of herbs with synergies that give the combinations powers greater than the sum of the actions of the individual herbs. We will discuss pairing strategies with a dozen of the most commonly used herbs in Western Herbalism.
Seasons of the Wild Ones
with Heron Brae
Many of us feel lost and longing for a way home to a right relationship with the earth and our plant allies. Modern life divorces us from the natural rhythms of the land unless we make a conscious decision to be connected to them. What are the natural seasonal rhythms of our landscape? How do these seasonal rhythms affect our lives, activities, and health? How are the seasons reflected in the plants around us? In this lecture we will discuss seasonal patterns in relationship to plants, and the inner seasonal rhythms that echo within and around us. The wheel of the year holds many layers of pattern and symbology, including plant harvesting techniques, medicinal characteristics, human development, and community design. We will come away with a map of each of our personal yearly cycles to help us shape a more earth-centered life for ourselves.
Nuestra Raíces: Ancestral and Herbal Knowledge for a New Lexicon of Healing
with Lara Pacheco
Lara Pacheco, of Seed and Thistle Apothecary and Seasonal Wellness Clinic, will share from her Puerto Rican ancestral plant lore as a way to understand and stitch together the body, mind, and spirit connection that have been lost to our consumeristic culture’s perspective on medicine, the body and illness. Lara believes that connecting with our herbal ancestral narratives is a source of strength and resilience in the face of global ecological catastrophe. She also believes that those most marginalized by our patriarchal system will be the leaders in the emerging shift in consciousness and place. The real question is can we re immerse ourselves deeply into the web/womb of life through our stories and ancestral connections? We’ll also learn how it is possible to try and integrate ancestral guides into a herbalist practice. Join Lara, by gently immersing yourself in the deep vast ocean of ancestral knowledge and plant lore; since plants will help us lead the way.
Solidarity in the Clinic and Beyond
with Sean Donahue
How can we address the imbalances in power present between practitioners and clients in a clinical setting? How can we take into account the social, cultural, and economic conditions that give rise to or exacerbate our clients’ suffering? How do we call in plants as allies in peoples’ struggle for justice and liberation? This class will be an exploration of power, privilege, and justice in the clinical setting drawing from critical theory and from experiences as both a practitioner and a client/patient.
with Gradey Proctor
Join Gradey as we walk around the grounds to see what’s growing, or dormant, around Campus. We’ll learn to identify medicinal herbs by their dead stems and seeds, trees and shrubs by their twigs; discussing botany, ecology, medicinal uses, wildcrafting and whatever else the plants feel up to sharing. Please come dressed for the weather.
30 Herbs to Heal your Village: Understanding What you Really Need with Erico Schleicher
What do we really need to be effective herbalists? A deep understanding of certain locally accessible plants and how to gather and formulate them; a close connection to the particular health needs of your community; and a grasp of basic therapeutic principles and how to spot potential red flags. All of these intersect at the conceptual nodes represented by a relatively small materia medica of plant medicines you know thoroughly and intimately. In this "demystified approach to being extraordinarily helpful," we explore ways to develop into herbal medicine workers for our various peoples and communities without the stresses that accompany being the only one holding access to esoteric arts. This class offers perspectives on how plant based medicine connects ecological sustainability with direct community support and health accessibility.
Plant Communion for Self-Care and Healing Practice
with Camilla Blossom and Katie Silva
Experience plant spirit communion—merging with the subtle energies of the flower fairies, devas, plant and tree spirits—as a heart-centered practice for self-care and to enhance your healing, teaching, alchemy practice. The Language of Nature is communicated through the heart. Camilla will share Wild Rose flower essence to help us open to receiving love and energetic healing frequencies we may be missing. She will share how to work with the spirit of the flowers for self-love, self-care, and to ignite passionate self-expression. Katie will hold space for you to have a direct experience in deep body based relationship with plants to reset your nervous system, receive more deeply, and to channel the healing spirit of plants to others in your healing practice.
Making the Most Of Chronic Health Problems
with Lindsay Buchanan
Sometimes health problems can be ambiguous, non-sensical, non diagnosed, non-linear, not seeming to improve and ruining the quality of our lives. Health is one of our true forms of wealth, but it’s not our only one. In this class we will explore the differences between health and wellness, and how to achieve wellness no matter what the status of your health is. We will also explore how to support our friends and family that struggle with chronic, ambiguous or persistent health problems. In this class we will scratch the surface on how our health, health problems and symptoms are actually a true gift in our lives, and how to make the best out of chronic health problems. We will also begin to make a "kit for the road back to health" for acute circumstances when dealing with health issues.
Social Forestry and Tree Medicine
with Hazel of Little Wolf Gulch
The horticulture of the west coast First Nations was awesome. Anthropologists wondered why they never became agriculturalists. The remnants of ethnobotany on the ground are still visible in many places on the west coast. We will explore how we might return to landscape scale horticulture and the abundance. Social Forestry is about local communities working together to enhance and restore Oak Pine savannas, riparian corridors, brush lands, community woodlands and fire resistant old growth forests. The big common task is to return cool understory burning to the forested landscape. Some thinning and high pruning work is necessary before we can under burn. There are many herbal and alternative forestry products to process on the way to the return of fire. We will review what social and material wonders await us.
Tree filled urban areas in Northwest cities also have potential for Social Forestry. Many organic farms have untended woodlands and forests. Those of us who come from Europe and many other forested landscapes have Deep Social Forestry (also called Traditional Ecological Knowledge) in our language, stories and poetry. The celts practice a spiritual ecological relationship to the sacred groves of Alphabet Trees. We will look at how similar our NW forests are to the European ones of some of our ancestors and what the Sacred Groves (where Druids where trained) here might contain. Our work in Ecotopia (or is it Cascadia?) of re-indigenation, de-colonization and re-wilding takes place on our forested landscapes. We are all relations of the trees, the tall standing people. Our attitude needs be of gratitude.
Basketry as Plant Medicine
with Peter Michael Bauer
Class Description coming soon!
We are the Alder People: Renewing Ancestral Roots in a Clear-cut Culture
with Scott Kloos
Even though many in our culture do not cultivate relationships with or honor our ancestors or the spirits of the lands in which we live, the ancestral forces are making themselves available to guide us through these turbulent times. Many of our current challenges, including an understanding of who we are or of how we relate as humans to the greater web of life is, may be attributed to a lack of relationship to these beings. In this class we will discuss ways to make these connections and the Plant Teachers who can help facilitate the renewal of these relationships. We will focus on the teachings of Alder who initiates the restoration of devastated land and inspires us to repair the inner devastation wrought by the dominant industrial culture. Come join me in singing songs of remembrance to make way for the spirits of renewal.
Clearing Trauma from the Autonomic: How Plant Medicines Can Help Restore Emotional and Spiritual Balance
with Scott Kloos
The autonomic nervous system, which more accurately ought to be described as being responsible for fight, flight, or resist and rest, digest, or release, may house the imprints of some of our most deeply traumatic experiences. If we do not clear these imprints, debilitating psycho-spiritual maladies including: anxiety, panic attacks, insomnia, frequent nightmares, emotional outbursts, hyper-vigilance, or emotional numbness and feelings of disconnect may plague us. Via shaking, purging, and energetic reorganization, some of my favorite plant medicines—Aspen, Silktassel, Iboga, Ayahuasca, and Devil’s Club—work to restore balance to the autonomic nervous system. I will share some of my personal experiences of healing trauma and how the plants have supported and accelerated this challenging process.
ROSE: Myth, Medicine, & Magic
with Jacks Overstreet
For centuries Rose has acted as a gateway to the heart; a conjurer of the sweetest decadence; a fierce protector of what is sacred; an invocation of sensuality; and a guide back to center. Come listen to the stories, taste the medicine, and explore the magic that Rosa has to offer. This class will incorporate practices to encourage deeper connection to plant magic and medicine.
Self-Care Through the Menstrual Cycle
with Silke Akerson
The menstrual cycle can be a great teacher about our bodies. Understanding our own cycles can point us back to physical and emotional health and balance if we learn how to listen to them. In this class we will cover each phase of the menstrual cycle including physiology, signs of imbalance and the herbs and acts of self-care we can use to heal issues that arise in the cycle. We will focus especially on premenstrual symptoms, cramps, irregular cycles and the emotional, spiritual, and physical benefits of bleeding.
Precise Diagnostics and the Six Tissue States
with Sajah Popham
Modern allopathic approaches to both conventional and herbal medicines have 1 thing in common- a symptomatic approach to treatment. While treatment of symptoms is an important aspect of the healing art, it can be easy to get lost in giving “this herb for that symptom” without taking a moment to look into the deeper underlying causes of those symptoms. One way this was achieved in traditional systems of healing is through models of energetic pathology, where the specific state of the tissues that comprise the organ systems is assessed and treated. This gives us a deeper understanding of the underlying patterns that give rise to symptoms and disease, and provides a more holistic understanding of the body and how herbs can be used most effectively.
In this class, you will learn the 6 tissue state model of the Physiomedicalist tradition, as discussed by Dr. Joseph Thurston in the early 1900’s. You will learn the basic physiological patterns of each tissue state, what types of diseases they tend to manifest, how to assess them holistically, and primary herbal categories for effective therapeutic treatment.
Ayurvedic Herbal Psychology
with Suzanne Rosen
This course explores the foundations of Ayurvedic psychology in a way that encourages compassion and clarity. We will illuminate the energetic patterns underlying mental states and behaviors in light of Ayurvedic principles and discuss multidimensional herbal approaches for healing disorders while nourishing the innate gifts associated with each Ayurvedic mental constitution.
Plants Against the Patriarchy: Invoking the Allyship of Magical Plants
with Iris Misciagna and Jaysen Paulson
We typically think of working with plants for personal benefit, but by opening to a subtle and deeper awareness, certain herbaceous friends want to assist in addressing larger global issues, stemming from capitalism and patriarchy. In this class, we will tap into the healing wisdom contained within the green Earth, and learn which plants want to assist us in creating a balanced world that we all want to live in---including the flowers themselves! This class is based on the mini-book of the same title, produced by Iris Mae Misciagna and Jaysen Paulson Hawthorne.
More Class Descriptions Coming Soon! .
For examples of years past, see the Archives page!