Chanchka Remedios

Harmonizing Relationships between Plants and People

Durango, Colorado

Three days in the mountains of southwest Colorado are a dream, a crispy recollection of sherbert colored sunrise, fairy houses along the creek, and sinking peacefully into the roots of fir, muscles humming sweetly in response to sweet Pedicularis. We spent those three days eating, praying and learning together, so that the memory is full of friendships and firesides and muffled giggles shared with the children.

I am impressed by our beloved Deb, her tenacity a buoy amongst the craze of needs and curiosities and the tendency to forget time when sleeping under the stars.  Keeping us moving, offering correct spelling of Latin names and guiding the rhythm of our days. She is worthy of a great gratitude!

In those high places on the mountain, we learn to move slowly so as not to loose our breath and quietly so as to walk with the deer and flit with the birds harmoniously. I met someone on the mountain who helped me to walk this way. Her name is Pedicularis. She has three dresses; her moist meadow dress, blooming purple and low to the ground, fern like leaves curling outward and petals the shape of an elephants head; the dress she wears when lying low at the base of spruce and aspen trees, milky flowers crowning narrow serrated leaves decorating a red stem; and the dress that fits a tall frame, broad fern leaves in bright green, heavy flowers bobbing in breezes.

Pedicularis is what we consider a nervine and her specialty is in relaxing our skeletal muscles. When we eat Pedicularis or drink the herb as tea our muscles release the tension that holds our skeleton imbalanced this way or that. For me, I feel settled, movement is easy, and clarity comes to my mind as the channels in my energetic body are opened and set free. She nourishes this state of our body and over time helps us to attain and maintain this relaxed and open state, a state where we are liberated from stiffness and stressful tension.

The weekend in Durango, our first meeting, Pedicularis was with me as I slept the cold nights, so that I woke rested and free from the usual creaking that comes with nights on the uneven ground and was with me much of the day, just a light sweetness gracing my body as we wandered slowly and sat patiently greeting the many medicine plants along the path.

Our days in Durango were a special time, the immersion in the world of plant medicine was deep and very full.

Many thanks due to Doug and Deb for their commitment, grace and love and especially to everyone who came along to craft, laugh and learn!!!