Have you noticed the growing popularity of Western Herbalism? It's so exciting. Far from being a new trend, it's actually the result of decades of dedicated efforts on the part of amazing pioneers like Rosemary Gladstar and my own teacher Susun S. Weed who have been tirelessly working to break down western cultures resistance to remembering how easy it is to heal ourselves with the use of common and widely available plants (weeds!) My favorite thing Susun said to me during by apprenticeship was about presenting at a conference at a popular retreat center, and being approached by someone asking “So you are teaching women to be herbalists? To which she replied no,
“I’m teaching women to be bitches, witches, dykes, and sluts”
Think about it- a bitch is a women who is not afraid to speak uncomfortable truths, a witch is a woman who’s not afraid of nature, a dyke is a woman who is not afraid of other women, and a slut is a woman who is not afraid of pleasure...
These are some of the most commonly used words for shaming the feminine in attempt to get her to play small and cooperate with the patriarchal agenda... it also reads like a treasure map/ instructions manual for any woman seeking to actually be present as herself and even dare I say enjoy her life...
You would think in times where sex and death are a part of almost every TV show, it would not be such a big deal to speak up about the magic of plants, but… witch burning happened, so, it is. No, seriously. More than 5o thousand women have been executed for being too weird. And if those women happened to be your ancestors, well rest assured that you received some really mixed messages about how to sit up straight, don’t ask too many questions, don’t be too pretty, too smart, too exceptional, and for god sakes keep your mouth shut, because that's how they learned to not end up drowned in the river or burned at the stake. In his upcoming retreat SHE: A lifetime of true wellness for women, Ayurvedic master Prashanti de Jager will be sharing about how thyroid disease is the result of thousands of years of humanity's attempting to silence the voice of the Wise Woman within…go Prashanti!
But anyway, enough of the why- the point is, I think many really unique, sassy, amazing souls decided to incarnated as women in this lifetime en mass with a clause in their contract that says “I will not be silenced.” Through the efforts of this far reaching group of women, the collective feminine has decided to heal the witch burning wound once and for all.
Like enough is enough. Plants are magic and Yoni's are magic, we all have the power to heal ourselves, heal each other, and talk directly with god, and that’s that. It’s time to move on from the collective, immature and irresponsibly implemented experiment that we all conducted to see what would happen if we let a few people manipulate the spiritual and material resources of the entire planet for a few thousand years. I think we have totally crunched the data on that one and the answer is, the planet will be systematically destroyed and we all die.
…So each and every time a witchy sister speaks, and doesn’t loose her life, the voice of all of womankind is strengthened, and we take note, do an totally un-sexy happy dance, and send blessings her way. Today, we are taking note of Amber Magnolia Hill, creatress of Mythic Medicinals, for her efforts to bring the ancient practice of herbal body oiling into the year 2015 and beyond with her timely new ebook:
Herbal Body Oiling: Ancient Sacrament, Modern Neccessity, which we were honored to get to contribute to.
The basic message of the book in my opinion can’t be beat, and goes something like this: Herbal body oiling- it’s easy, it’s fun, it's for everyone. Make it yourself, its practically free, but if that’s not your thing you can buy some from me….( that rhymed and i’m going with it!)
Table of Contents:
- Introduction: Welcome Home
- What Others Have Had To Say After Using Herbal Body Oils
- What The Ancients Knew
- My Story: Overwhelmed Mama Desperately Seeks Relief
- The Nervous System
- The Lymphatic & Immune Systems
- How To Use Herbal Body Oils
- How To Make Fresh Plant Infused Body Oils
- A Partial List of Healing Herbs & Their Medicinal Actions
- Carrier Oils
- Unexpected Radical Feminist Conclusion
- First Steps Forward From Here
- Notes & Suggested Reading
- Thank You!
- Bonus #1: What is the Difference Between Herbal Body Oils, Essential Oils, and Flower Essences?
- Bonus #2: Oil Pulling
With contributions from eight amazing herbalists, the wisdom in this offering is both deep and wide, covering many aspects of Herbal Body Oiling and sacred self care. Contributors include Erin Rivera Merriman of Active Culture Family ( that's me!) Ally Sands of Aquarian Soul Designs, Rachel Budde of Fat & the Moon, Vicky Salcido-Cobbe of Grandmother's Medicine, Kelsey Barrett of Heavy Nettle, Sophia Rose of La Abeja Herbs, Kari Jansen of Poppy & Someday, and Kiva Rose of Traditions in Western Herbalism.
Written By Erin Rivera Merriman of Active Culture Family
Click here to read our interview with Amber, now up on the Collaborators section of our website,
and visit www.aquariandawn.com to purchase your own copy of