I’m a therapist of western medicinal herbs for about 8 yeas now, a graduate of the Reidman school for alternative medicine. After asking some questions as a sort of interview and understanding the cause for the physical/mental problem I build a formula that consists of several medicinal herbs, the formula is then sent to a specialized pharmacy where it gets prepared and composed as a tincture. Each patient gets a formula that personally fits his illness/problem but also his symptoms, for there can be two patients with the same or similar illness/problem but each will display very different symptoms.
Today, in alternative medicine, we divide the medicinal herbs arbitrarily into 3 groups: Western medicinal herbs, Chinese medicinal herbs and Ayurveda herbs.
Medicinal herbs are historically known for curing illnesses or alleviating symptoms. Back in the stone age human-beings learned how to use the medicinal herbs’ qualities by trial and error of course, not like today. They used them both for their healing purposes and as part of their mystical rituals. The knowledge of the medicinal herbs would pass generation after generation to each tribe’s healer.
The use of medicinal herbs accompanies man-kind throughout history and is interlaced with it. Each geographical point has its own medicinal herbs that grow according to its climate, soil and terrain. Each medicinal herb has its own botanical family to which it belongs, chemical characteristics and interactions.
In the past the herbs that grew in one place didn’t grow in another, but ever since the immigration of man across continents, taking his medicinal herbs with him, this changed- forcing the herbs to migrate as well. The herbs then needed to change some of their qualities in order to better fit the surface on which they grew, creating different species for each medicinal herb. In fact, some of the qualities of a specific medicinal herb or its form of expression depend on its position and its environmental conditions.
Along the years we’ve accumulated a lot of written knowledge about a lot of the medicinal herbs whether it’s from researchers that traveled to places far and wide like the Amazon rainforest or healers. There are a lot of books that describe the herbs from the way they look to their qualities, origins and ways of use. A lot of the basic information can also be found online.
The origins of the conventional medicine are, in fact, rooted in those ancient healers, therefore a lot of the conventional medicines we use today are originated from medicinal herbs. The conventional medicine, though, secluded the parts it needed from the herbs and created a chemical imitation of their main components in specialized labs. All this because of availability problems, difficulty supplying herbs in the same quantity in which people consume medicines, money and immediate effectiveness.
The conventional medicine isolated the active component in the herb and created a chemical synthetic imitation of that component. In the alternative medicine we believe that there’s a reason why there are additional components to the active one in the herb… sometimes it’s in order to create balance and sometimes that exact synergy can create a better function of the herb, therefore a better recovery…one that the isolated and imitated component alone cannot create. Which brings us and contributes to side-effects.
I believe that the medicinal herbs, just like edible herbs/plants, are there for us to use them to cure ourselves and improve our quality of life, just like animals do in nature. I believe that we can harness nature to our aid, after all that’s what it’s meant for, and that if we’ll make an intelligent use of it, we can cure illnesses or at least improve their symptoms. I tell that to all my patients- medicinal herbs treat the body, mind and spirit in a balanced and healthy way.
When I build a formula, I take into consideration all the aspects that the soul expresses and the difficulties we experience throughout our lives, since all this creates a certain imbalance that eventually manifests itself in a mental/physical illness.
The goal I put in front of me is to restore the balance between body, mind and spirit and for that I harness the power of medicinal herbs, all my knowledge and other techniques which I combine in order to reach it.
I admit, we’re always moving on the balance axis in some way or another, between balanced and imbalanced (sort of like waves at sea), but for an illness to occur the imbalance must be grave and dramatic, not just a small everyday shift towards one of the extremes on this axis. The great big waves at sea when there’s a tsunami can destroy everything and kill but they can also help create a new beginning, a new reality. On the other hand, there are those small and harmless ripples at sea, they push us just a little bit and may even bring us joy at times.
When I talk about returning the balance, as an alternative therapist, I refer to situations of great big tsunami waves rather than small harmless ripples which represent our normal and healthy state.