The Book of Herbal Wisdom: Using Plants as Medicines

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The Book of Herbal Wisdom: Using Plants as Medicines

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by Matthew Wood

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There are many fine herb books written by our country’s great herbalists gracing the shelves these days. But only once in a while does a classic arise. The Book of Herbal Wisdom is surely that. Written with grace, intelligence, and warmth, this book is richly infused with the gift of wisdom and earns its title at every turn.
— Rosemary Gladstar

In The Book of Herbal Wisdom Matthew Wood creates a vast and sweeping history of herbalism, drawing on Western botanical knowledge, homeopathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and Native American shamanic botony. Detailing the history and use of more than forty plants, he shows how each tradition views a plant, as well as its use in cases drawn from his own herbal and homeopathic practice. An initial section describes signatures, similars, and patterns in these traditions, and elements, temperaments, and constitutions. Wood has two objectives: to demonstrate how herbal medicines are agents of healing and wisdom, and to give the reader a useful catalogue of plants for medicinal uses. His clinical observations of his patients bear the wry wisdom of the country doctor; his love of plants is evident in lush botanical descriptions, which show the connection between remedies - whether homeopathic, Chinese, or Native American - and the plants from which they are derived. The Book of Herbal Wisdom brings to readers centuries of lore about healing from indigenous traditions, at a time when people are exploring empirical enthosciences with a seriousness unparalleled in history. In no other contemporary botanical compendium have North American Indian medicine, homeopathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and Western herbalism been so thoroughly integrated, and so engagingly described.

592 Pages, ISBN 9781556432323

Matthew Wood has been a practicing herbalist since 1982. In a period when many authors and lecturers are merely "arm chair herbalists" who offer theories and opinions based on book learning, and others have turned to the exotic traditions of India or China, he has been an active practitioner of traditional Western herbalism. He has helped tens of thousands of clients over the years, with many difficult health problems. While Matthew believes in the virtue of many other healing modalities, he has always been inspired to learn, preserve, and practice the tradition of herbal medicine descending to us from our European, Anglo-American, and Native American heritage. He is a member of the American Herbalists Guild (registered herbalist) and has earned his Masters of Science degree from the Scottish School of Herbal Medicine (accredited by the University of Wales). Learn more at his website here.