THE BORDER LIFE

 

Riverdave's Five Level Herbal Treatment for Lyme Disease

 
A comparison between two health care models  
 

A helpful assessment tool for the herbalist

 
My Morning Medicine Herb Pudding or "Chyawanprash"
My basic method of herb ingestion
   
Midnight Watch
My approach to the resolving the sleep dilemma 
 
 Chinaberry Tree - Riverdave explores the Himalayan Medicinal ties
of the Maha-Nimba tree 
 
 
Photo - Down in the Haw River Valley, Riverdave and Suki Roth shave willow tree bark that will go into Herb Haven's Pain Free Formula.
 
The Community Herbalist


My first exposure to community herbalism came in the 1970s & 80s when I worked as a linguist, living for a decade in the Middle East. My concerned Arab neighbors introduced me to traditional aromatic herbal teas like anise and sage to help me deal with my family‚Äôs exposure to what is known as "lafhat hawa," or wind sear.  I leaned how to deal with often acquired GI upsets by eating ripe guavas, and to prevent such problems by adding fresh garlic to food. One of my Arabic teachers was also an "attaar," or distiller of botanical essential oils. I soon became adept at navigating the fragrant and vibrant herb markets of old Jerusalem, Amman and Cairo.  


During my work as a naturalist guide in South America in the 1990s, I was introduced to powerful purgative and healing plant medicines like oje latex and chuchuwasi bark.  Experiencing the lift from chewing and praying with whole coca leaves became an herbal practice that I continue to this day. These traditional Amazonian botanicals profoundly impacted my life.

 I was amazed how the salubrious atmosphere of the herb markets of Cusco, Iquitos, Manaus and Belem stood out in sharp contrast to the sterile, antiseptic, chemical miasma of the pharmacies I had grown up with the USA. Since then I have received 1000 hours of training in traditional therapies from the following groups:


     Bolivia Mystica - La Paz, Bolivia (Traditional Medicine of Amazonia) 1998 - 1999 

     Foundation for Shamanic Studies - Mill Valley, California  (Core Shamanism)  2000 - 2005

     Lotus Palm School - Montreal, Quebec  (Thai Yoga Therapy)  2006 - 2007

     Bodhi Tree Learning Center - Richmond, Virginia  (Traditional Medicine of Thailand)  2008 - 2009

     Pacific Rim College - School of Phytotherapy - Victoria, British Columbia  (Community Herbalism)  2010

     TriGuna Institute - Belo Horizonte, Brazil (Ayurveda - Traditional Medicine of India)  2011


     Ananda Ashram - Monroe, NY (Ayurveda - Traditional Medicine of India) 2016

     Rangjung Yeshe 

Institute - Kathmandu, Nepal (Sanskrit - Language of Yoga and Ayurveda) 2017

Since 2012 I have assisted Suki Roth at her Herb Haven garden and apothecary in the Haw River Valley of North Carolina.  Through these study and work experiences I have come to understand that the practice of herbalism is foundational to all traditional systems of healing. And diverse shamanic and bodywork therapies are really only adjunct to a more basic and universal practice of botanical medicine.  My own priority is to first choose medicinal plants native to my home region of Eastern America. 
If they are not readily available, plants from other regions and traditions can be incorporated.  
At present I am researching the possibility of a sustainable herbal pharmacy based on medicinal trees native to Eastern America. My primary method of testing these backyard trees is through the ingestion of twig bark teas.  My first product in its testing stage is a Ten Bark Tea.
 

What I offer now as a Community Herbalist:  I invite you to explore with me traditional herbal options for any acute or chronic challenges to your health.  Some of the herbs I may recommend I can teach you how to wildcraft locally.  Others can be purchased through Herb Haven.  My fee for a consultation of up to an hour and a half is $75. To schedule a consultation, please call me at 919-489-2934 or email me at riverdave52@gmail.com