2018 TerraVita Herbal Symposium Schedule

Class Schedule

9-9:30: Great Room Introductions

Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

  • Botany –Natures magical map with Shana Lipner-Grover-Botany is the scientific study of plants. It also allows us to feel confident in identifying food, medicine and poisonous plants that live around us. Plants have evolved to play roles within their chosen environments, with trained botanical eyes, we can see this interaction and resiliency of plants, animals, mycelia, insects and microbes. Botany allows us to understand the parts of plants, which can lead to developing a deeper relationship with our herbal allies. When we learn to use our botanically trained eyes, we can see magic and light the spark of wonder.
  • Herbs for the Memory, Focus, and Attention with Lily Mazarella- Many of us have had the experience of forgetting a name we just learned, of re-reading the same paragraph four times (and still not retaining it), or of going through the day in a “fog.”   Issues with attention, memory, and mental function are becoming more common, and more pronounced—even in the (relatively) young and healthy.  In this class, we will review the role of stress, untreated depression, hormones, sleep, and food in cognitive function.  We will explore (and taste!) major herbs traditionally used for memory and mental clarity and talk about practical ways to improve cognition and attention.
  • Self-Care for the Grieving Body with Kristy Martinez– Everyone experiences grief at different times in our lives and on different levels. We grieve in most big change/transition periods–loss of a job, a break-up, a big move, loss of an important relationship, etc., and then there is the loss of a loved one. Dealing with loss is not only a tremendous emotional and spiritual undertaking, it also greatly affects our physical well-being. Our bodies experience loss, as well. During these emotionally/mentally stressful times we tend to forget or don’t even recognize what our bodies are navigating, and we neglect self-care as we focus on what is going on in the head and heart. During our time together we will discuss the physical symptoms of grief and loss, the autonomic nervous system responses to grieving—how the body stores and reacts to grief, how to identify grief triggers, and self care for the body during the grieving period, which includes herbs, nurturing physical touch and building a safe and comfortable environment. This information is also excellent for practitioners of any type to educate and empower clients during times of mourning.
  • Pollinating our Blossoming Hearts – Tending the Vitality of the Earth with Benjamin Pixie– Pollination- plant sex, the sacred dance of flower sperm to ovule, often mediated by the little winged lady cupids, the honey bees.  Through their work, not only are the flowers given a more fecund future, but they take the most fleeting and sweet aspect of a plant- it’s secretions of the nectaries, into the most immortal gold, the only food that will never rot- honey.  Honey bees are the original plant medicine makers, they have created civilization based on mediating the reproductive life of plants in which the body of their hive is made of the sweet fruits of that sex. Benjamin will be sharing stories of Bees as stewards of the fecundity of life and examples of alternative styles of civilization that promote diversity. This class will focus on healing the damage to our world, psyches, and sexualities and bodies created by the disconnection from the divine magic of sacred sexuality as embodied by the pollinator.   The class will include tasting many different floral based and infused honeys and stories/ gifts of the plant medicines as the bees and beelovers experience them as medicines to awaken our own role as divine pollinators. Through myth, story, plant medicine and history this class will examine the ways our current experiments in civilization are heading towards catastrophe as currently seen in Colony Collapse Disorder, and that the true cure is to revere the honey bee as a divine sex worker and awaken ourselves to play that same role in the ecosystem, to feed what feeds us, and to give back with all that we receive.

12-1:30 pm Lunch served in The Great Room

Saturday 1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

  • Medicine Making- percolation method with Julie James
  • Understanding Adrenalin Stress with Howie Brounstein- Poor dental hygiene, bad mouth flora, lifestyle choices, or pharmaceutical drugs can cause bad breath. Can you recognize when it is caused by stress?  Join me on a tour of the dark recesses of your body to explore the effects of adrenalin stress. This “fight or flight” response reaches the digestive, reproductive, musculo-skeletal, and central nervous systems, and in addition to the liver, spleen, and kidneys and even causes predictable changes in blood chemistry. These changes are perfectly orchestrated to keep us alive when approached by a large predatory animal while foraging in the wilderness. Unfortunately, in today’s world we get the same physiological changes when the phone rings and we think it might the student loan company again. Learn to recognize the larger picture, the predicable patterns, that stress can cause. Time permitting we will discuss an overview of herbal strategies to reduce adrenalin stress.
  • Working Together: Building the Successful Herbalist-Client Relationship with Marcia Coppess– A thriving and successful herbalist-client relationship is collaborative, with the client driving the bus and the herbalist giving directions. In this class we’ll look at building a successful alliance from the views of both parties.  What behaviors are likely to create success, and what may doom the effort?  We’ll talk though real-life scenarios and discuss how we might handle them. This class is for practicing and aspiring herbalists as well as those who might be clients one day.

Saturday 4-8pm:  Marketplace in Great Room – Free and Open to the Public


9-9:30: Great Room Introductions

  • 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.: Children’s Herb Camp with Earthroots Field School – Children ages 4-12

Sunday 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

  • Wild Epicure: Infusing Local Flavors, Herbs and Mushrooms into Gourmet and Everyday Cuisine for Vibrant Health with Jess Starwood- In this class, you will learn how to creatively incorporate the unique flavors of local wild herbs and mushrooms in healthy every day meals, drinks, nut cheeses, chocolates, and other desserts. Both plant-based and traditional diet adaptations will be presented with an emphasis on healthy, high-vitality foods to nourish and heal our bodies while also delighting our senses. And of course, we will taste and sample some unique snacks, drinks and treats!
  • Plant Walk with William Broen– William Broen will be leading an herb walk at the trail across from the school. He leads these walks all over Southern California in the wild and through several botanic gardens. William will talk about the traditional and modern uses of over a dozen wild California plants in detail, but in a way that is easy to understand. Besides uses of plants, William will also talk about folklore and such topics as how we use the survival mechanisms of plants for our benefit, how our senses tell us a lot about who these plants are, and where we can find them. The walk is easy, interactive, fun, and right across the street. Plants we will meet may include White Sage, California Mugwort, Mexican Elderberry, Mustard, California Sagebrush, Yarrow, California Blackberry, Horehound, and more. This is a great opportunity to spend time with some local plants that can help us heal ourselves.
  • The New Normal: Strategies for Protection and Resiliency in a Wildfire World with Lily Mazarella– As climate change-related weather conditions intensify, urban wildfires present profound new systemic health challenges that herbalists must be prepared for.  We will learn about the compounds present in urban wildfire smoke and ash, and why exposure impacts more than just the respiratory tract; how to identify at-risk groups, and how to proceed in a disaster zone.  We will also discuss self-protection measures for poor air quality due to increased fire activity, even at a distance.  Focusing on herbs and healing foods, we will also address how to protect ourselves and our families, as well as when to nourish and when to “detoxify” after exposure to smoke and extreme stress.

12-1:30 pm Lunch served in The Great Room

1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

  • Plant Chemistry with Julie James
  • Fluid System Energetics –Maintaining the Flow with Shana Lipner-Grover-The foundation of health is balance. Michael Moore’s Constitutional Physiology is a unique perspective into reading patterns of the body relating to excess and deficiency. Within fluid system energetics, we can see how systems running in excess can pull vital energy from areas running deficiently. This can compromise the ability of the body to excrete waste products, leading to build up and imbalance within organ systems. We will cover how to we use this effective perspective to help our clients. Why the integrity of mucosal membranes and efficiency of elimination pathways is so vital to health and how Alterative herbs can help our bodies find balance to operate at peak capacity.
  • Mead Making, Potions and Herbcraft with Benjamin Pixie– In this class we will explore the role mead as a method of medicine and taste examples of meads while learning some basic and more advanced primitive and modern mead making techniques.We will focus on the history and mythology of the ancient and sacred practice of fermentation and explore the delicious intricacies of alchemical transmutation that the bee perform to create the most immortal gold of honey and the ways we humans further this art in the creation of ambrosia- the divine drink of poets and the divine. We will explore various possibilities of mead due to yeast culture/ floral source and addition of herbs, as well as the role of mead and ferments in medicine and herbcraft.
  • Oregon Grape In-depth with Howie Brounstein- Oregon Grape is one of my favorite plant medicines. We will look at its bitter, alterative, anti-bacterial, and liver-stimulating properties, as well as the important new uses as an adjunct to synergizing antibiotics in an antibiotic resistant world. Applications in both the acute and chronic symptom pictures are addressed along with a few droppers of colorful stories and case histories.

Additional Class descriptions coming soon!

*class schedule is subject to change

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