Herb Network HeN

Creating HeN, The Vision

HeN: Local herb networks for growing, learning, sharing the gifts of the Plant realm for health support and remedy, caring for ourselves and Earth

The most effective herbs for helping ourselves are those that grow locally.  Herbs not only help us increase our health and relieve maladies, they also give us a doorway into a deeper spiritual awareness that heals the human-Earth relationship - unfolding consciousness of our unity, knowing that we are Earth, and Earth is us.  Plants R Us.

The most effective herbs for helping ourselves are those that grow locally.  Herbs not only help us increase our health and relieve maladies, they also give us a doorway into a deeper spiritual awareness that heals the human-Earth relationship - unfolding consciousness of our unity, knowing that we are Earth, and Earth is us.  Plants R Us.

At the ground, HeN is a network for local growing, harvesting and sharing very high quality safe herbs.  It has long been observed that plants grow where they are needed.  We will learn to use the gifts of weeds such as dandelion, nettle, plantain. Some people will host easy-to-grow simples for a local basic medicine chest share scheme, including horehound, meadowsweet, mint, marshmallow.  In my articles Weeds Love Us, Herbal Simples, Amazing Aromatics, and Mighty Elder I feature a group of herbs that are safe and appropriate for common maladies.

Lots of reasons to avoid pharmaceutical drugs  In the UK, National Health Service and over-the-counter drugs may not seem £costly to individuals, but they are very costly to our society and to Earth - thus to us all.  Their production, packaging, and transport uses a lot of petrochemical and other resources, and their cost to the NHS is astronomical.  The individual health cost is the multitude of side-effects they so often cause, which call for use of yet more highly processed chemical drugs.  As we develop informed attitudes and our abilities to let the Plant realm help us more directly with living health aids, we have safe means to respond to common maladies as well as avoid them more easily.  The human body does not build resistance against herbal remedies' actions.

The Herb Challenge  There are many reasons for the rise of pharmaceutical medicines and loss of common use of herbs for health.  Some of the reasons present would-be home herbalists with challenges.  Rather than just using what we are told, with herbs we need some know-how and responsibility to use them safely and effectively.  We can't generally pop out and buy simples - though some herbal preparations are now generally available in shops, they are often highly processed and usually expensive.  Learning to grow, harvest and preserve high quality plant material takes skill, forethought, and 'shelf life' is often not so long as for drugs.   The best herbal health care is rooted in a different perception about life and Earth, involves a different mind-set, life style and rhythm, requiring a wide range of skills which can be shared in a community.  The rewards are high.

The most hidden challenge is to overcome mountains of misinformation and prejudice about herbs and Earth.  For several generations there has been increasing dismissal of the power of the natural world to help us.  Even more insidious, we have been taught to fear life*, rather than to learn about and trust Nature.  On the up side, as we take up the HeN challenge, shift basic family care to herbal simples, step by step then by leaps a wondrous world opens to us, one that is beneficent, caring, trust worthy, alive and loving.  Herbs themselves can help us to change our minds.  (*If you think you don't fear life, have a look at the toxic cleaners / killers you use day to day, just for starters.)

HeN Possibilities  Just as for any community endeavor, different people will take up different parts.  Some people will grow one or several herbs in their own gardens; some HeNs will establish group-care herb gardens / community allotments.  Others may be best at harvesting, preservation, and making of preparations (teas, tinctures, oils, salves etc).  The fruit of all these skills will be linked by a community storage (herb bank) and information hub. If your interest is fired, here are further ideas about how individuals can take part:

PROVIDING FOR HeN  For the West Somerset HeN I have written four articles about home care herbs which can be grown easily locally for health support and a Green Medicine Chest.  Growers will provide the highest quality herbs, for own use and surplus to share.  You may host one of the herbs or several that flourish in your garden (the Force is strong!).  You may discover and cultivate an intimate relationship with the plants you care for - nourishing a spiritual aspect.  The mutual awareness and love you engender helps the healing spirit of the plant into the end herbal product.  At this level of participation we find that herbs have even more to offer than the physical aids of 'this-for-that'.

Supply fresh culinary health herbs to local grocers.  Certainly not a get-rich activity, yet worth any effort from those who are able and feel moved to share.  See article "Astounding Aromatics".

Harvesters and preservers will need to learn when and how for the very best quality.

Preparation can be done by those with a love and knack for the crafts, whether making tea mixes, tinctures, salves, oils etc.

Storing  Most homes need only a small range of herbs and preparations for general and 1st Aid use, just as no one stocks all the kinds of medicines available at the chemist.   We are prone to some maladies and not others, so households keep stock of what is generally needed / used.  Then it's wonderful to be able to call on help from a HeN store for the odd other illness.

Teaching how to safely use the herbs in what form: get-togethers, Online and printed information sheets.  It will also be a great help to have a few most knowledgeable 'hub' folks to call on to check any details as needed.  Refer also to my list of local herbal doctors and book resources.  My 5***** recommendation is Rosemary Gladstar's Herbal Medicine: A Beginner's Guide, even for the experienced, not the least as it's the most excellent information I have found on how to use and recipes, even for the experienced.

PLANTS CAN'T DO IT ALL FOR US!  Information about the most basic aspects of health care will also be accessible.  Many current ailments have arisen out of ignorance of fundamental needs including breath, fresh air, sunlight, exercise, healthy mind, and how to cook fresh and unprocessed food.  So local HeNs might also branch into Health Networks.

And plants can do far more than most of us imagine  Dr. Edward Bach recognised how our physical bodies respond to our emotions and attitudes.  He saw how specific plants relate to personality patterns (The First Twelve), and others to patterns that we develop in response to life challenges - survival strategies we build (The Seven Helpers).  Through an extraordinary year of exploration he identified another fundamental 19 states of mind and the corresponding flower remedies.  In short, he discovered how the Plant realm helps us to keep an even keel to flow through life, avoid getting stuck in harmful negative ruts, and in this way also help us to recover and maintain physical health.  Helping each other to use these safe and wonderful gifts, the Bach Flower Remedies, plus how to make your own vibrational essences if you feel so moved, will be a welcome part of HeN.

In the West Somerset area, Cynthia Alves will be a hub for providing seeds and plants, information, and a central store.  If you are interested in any aspect of HeN, please get in touch via Contact above.

TOP quality energy flow.

Earth > healing humanity > healing Earth > One World > One Life > Earth