Planetary Herbology is Michael and Lesley Tierra’s unique, global approach to botanical medicine. It unites a solid study of herbs, scientific research, medicine-making, and diagnostic systems from all over the world. Planetary Herbology brings together the 3 great systems of herbal healing:
- Western Herbal Medicine (WHM)
- Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
- Traditional Ayurvedic Medicine (TAM)
While we use and teach these three modalities primarily, we do not use them exclusively. Isn’t one of these systems enough? Today as ethnic and cultural boundaries are increasingly blurred and the international marketplace is rapidly expanding, students of herbal medicine are exposed to a wide variety of herbs from all over the world. Each herbal tradition’s own materia medica (catalogue of plants used for medicine) has a unique relevance and value that another tradition may lack. A solid knowledge of the uses of exotic as well as backyard herbs endows the planetary herbologist with a powerful advantage over those who only use plants from a limited geographic region. In addition to the East-West materia medica, Planetary Herbology teaches diagnostic methodology from the three systems. But even if one were to memorize the properties of hundreds of worldwide herbs, the ability to use them safely and effectively would be severely limited unless one also employed an assessment (diagnosis) methodology appropriate to the use of herbs. For this methodology, the Eastern traditions of Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines offer us elegant and sophisticated systems that correlate the energies and properties of plants to specific differential diagnostic signs and symptoms. This allows the practitioner to select the healing plants best suited to each individual case. These diagnostic systems may be used with any collection of herbs from any locality around the world. Using these systems, along with long-lost traditions from Western herbal medicine, the East West Herb Course offers a comprehensive and truly planetary education in both materia medica and assessment. In the 21st century, ease of travel and communication brings the remotest corners of the earth into our homes and herbal pharmacies! With that in mind, the true planetary herbalist is trained to be able to select and prepare the best plants at hand to heal themselves and others, both at home and abroad.