This in-depth course offers an inquiry into the systems, processes and organs of the human body in layers: physical anatomy and physiology, energy anatomy by way of the 7 chakra system, elemental links with the Earth and ecological systems, as well as elemental links with medicinal plants and astrological influences.
One of the benefits I enjoyed in choosing to study at a university in the North Rivers region of Australia was learning medical science from professors who were also herbalists at heart. My chemistry and biochemistry professor? An herbalist who’s husband has extensively studied the capsicum family. My anatomy and physiology professor? A total anatomy and plant nerd. My main herbal professor? A radically deep thinker, as well as mom, herbalist, researcher and activist. This means that in class, whether we were talking glycolysis, anatomy of the kidneys or nutritional pathways of potassium, some part of the lesson brought it back to a bigger picture, and often to health and herbs, and how the information could be used towards healing and wellness.
It is from this vein that I wish to offer a holistic anatomy course. This isn’t a university, so you won’t be graded (unless you want to be), there is no pass or fail. But this course is meant to be a commitment, an undertaking, for those who want to delve deeply into a study of the human body: our physical makeup, our energetic makeup, our relational energetics to the world we live in. And to look at how the microcosm of our bodies, studied in systems and organs and chakras, reflect the macrocosm of our world: Earth, ecology, plants and the cosmos. In this way, we hope to reflect on what the macro lens of perception can offer to us by way of learning about our bodies, and how, through better understanding our bodies, we can better see how to better care for and honor our home.
This course is information heavy. There will be homework. Expect to do some book learning and some lecture learning, as well as creative and experiential learning through artistic expression, meditation and group discussion.
A typical class will include:
Review of assigned reading and discussion
Introduction of a body system: gross anatomy, a closer look at components and physiology
A creative project to help form a clear visual of how the system/organs function
An overview of the related chakra and a meditation or similar practice to gain deeper awareness of it
An overview of the related ecology and cosmic influences/alignments
Information about herbs which have an affinity for the body system and chakra – both physically and energetically
Classes will also include personal exploration, case studies for group exploration and discussion, and additional creative exercises for deeper integration as time allows (We will switch up the rhythm each time we meet to keep it fluid and full)
This course is well suited to those with previous knowledge and experience regarding the body, health, herbal medicine and/or astrology as it will build on foundational knowledge and connect it to a larger picture. The material will be presented such that no previous knowledge of these studies is necessary. Please note that this course is not a replacement for a university level anatomy class – we will be studying for the sake of building a general understanding of the body within the greater framework of life.
12 Sundays, 9am to 4pm, beginning on January 6th and ending on June 16th
Location: the Hyllantree Herbcraft Classroom in Hope, Maine
Overnight accommodation (basically indoor camping) is available for those who need to travel. The space is rustic but comfortable.
A $100 non-refundable deposit holds your space in this course (limited to 11 participants)
At least $600 must be paid before the first class, and the remainder must be paid in full by March 1st.
Class dates: January 6th and 20th, February 3rd and 17th, March 3rd, 17th and 31st, April 14th and 28th, May 12th and 26th, June 16th.
Call or email for more information and to register.
Artwork by Meara Louise Cafferata