Ancestral, Folk, & Indigenous Herbalism and Healing Intensive

Join us August 2-11 or August 6-11 and go deeper. 

Sliding Scale Cost: $525-625 10 days or $325-425 for 6 days 10-3pm  

August 2-5: Tonita Gonzales & Rita Navarette

Hands On Healing (Sobadas), Fire Cupping (Ventosas), Healing with Medicinal Smoke (Moxa), Laugh Therapy, Recognizing & Releasing  Emotional Congestion, Understanding physical and emotional benefits of Temazcal (Sweat Lodge), Optional Sweat Lodge After Class.  Possible Clinic After Classes

August 6-11: Ancestral, Folk & Indigenous Herbalism and Healing Advanced Intensives

Teachers: Emigdio Ballon, Margaret Garcia,   Ana Chavez, Henrietta Gomez and Bernadette Torres

 Tribally Affiliated people of NM may pay on a donation basis

Teacher Descriptions & Topics:

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Henrietta Gomez

Tour of Taos Pueblo with Henrietta Gomez. Henrietta will talk story, and share with students the traditional foods as medicine.  


Emigdio Ballon

Topics: Growing Medicinal Foods, Quechua Traditions of the Andes

*Pachamama (Earth) blessings

*Coca Leaf for medicine and divination

*Permaculture: Drought Resistant Crops and tricks for growing during drought years Identifying Obstacles and Challenges, Seed Collection,

Emigdio Ballon is Quechua, from Bolivia, a decendent of the Inca people. He employs traditional Quechua techniques and rituals when he works with food and herbs as medicine.  He is the director of the Institute of Natural and Traditional Knowledge and the Agricultural Director of the Pueblo of Tesuque, and Board President of Four Bridges Traveling Permaculture Institute.

He earned his Bachelors degree in agriculture at Major Bolivian University of Saint Simon in Cochabamba, Bolivia and his Masters degree in plant genetics in Colombia. He studied for his Doctorate at Colorado State University. As a plant geneticist he has specialized in research on quinoa and amaranth grains and has published many articles about them in both South and North America.

Emigdio has served as an organic certification inspector in the United States and has made many presentations at major conferences on agriculture. He has studied principles of bio-dynamic farming at the Josephine Porter Institute of Applied Bio-Dynamics and continues to study and make presentations at various seminars.

In his little free time, Emigdio pursues research into germination techniques for a wide variety of crops, including traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic herbs and herbs indigenous to Northern New Mexico. His other interests include seed saving and sharing, bio-dynamic and organic farming and sustainable agricultural practices. He is also involved with Native American organizations which stress the importance of seed saving and promote the revival and continuation of traditional crops, both nutritional and medicinal. He employs traditional Quechua techniques and rituals which he learned at his grandfather’s side as a boy in Bolivia.

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Ana Chavez

Topic: Rock & Stone Therapy for Chronic Conditions

Ana Chavez is a New Mexican Sobadora (native hands on bodyworker). She recognized at an early age that she was a conduit for healing energy and learned the healing traditions from both of her grandmothers. Focusing that energy, Ana investigated traditional forms of healing, studied modern massage, anatomy, and physiology, and received training in polarity therapy, shiatsu, and other healing modalities.

She is skilled in working with people with disabilities and chronic conditions. Ana is also a personal trainer and she teaches Aqua Pilates and yoga.


Margaret Garcia

Topic: Plant & People Ethics, Medicinal Plant Walk (Mesa Plants)  and Sustainable Harvest and Medicine Making on Trail

Margaret Garcia, B.S.  is a mother, wife, a local hierbera, and food scientist.  She was raised in the mountains of Northern New Mexico where her family has lived for 12 generations.  Her family taught her to identify local herbs and how to use herbs and food as medicines.  Margaret is passionate about the maintenance of traditional land-based knowledge and culture, especially food and herbs.  She and her husband, Miguel Santistevan, live in Taos, NM with their two daughters. They maintain a conservation farm, called Sol Feliz Farm, where many visitors have participated in educational presentations, tours and hands-on workshops.


Lucy McCall

Topic:  Reconnecting to European Heritage with Druidic and Pagan Traditions through medicine making, herbal plant walk and exploring plant energetics.  

Lucy started to study astrology at 16 years of age and herbs at 17 years of age she had an aunt that taught her a lot of the stars.  Various other people on the herb path that she met taught her, so almost 50 years of study have been teaching 40 of those years and the last 10 at UNM. She grows herbs,  writes about herbs, paints herbs and has made about 200 formulas.  They have been in stores across the land before the world got strange about herbs.   She has come to the herbs mainly through the European version and has learned some of other Traditions along the way.

Tonita Gonzales & Rita Navarrette

August 2-5

Tonita Gonzales

Traditional Healer, Curandera, Sobadora, Yerbera, Temazcalera

Tonita received her Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics, and Bachelors of Arts in Graphic Design from The American University in Washington DC. She recently completed her studies of Traditional Medicine at the University of Mexico, Morelos, at Centro de Desarollo Humano Hacia La Comunidad. She completed her diplomados (diplomas) in Acupuncture, Medicinal Plants, Massage (Sobadas), and Temazcal (Mexica sweatlodge),. In addition, Tonita worked side-by-side with several different Curanderos through-out Mexico. She was honored to be asked to be an apprentice with Rita Navarrete Perez. Tonita worked in Rita’s Clinic and Temazcal in Mexico City, and School/Clinic in Jilotepec Mexico, which focuses on women survivors of Domestic Violence. She continues to work with Rita, and is grateful to have such an amazing Maestra (teacher) in her life.

Tonita is a resident of Albuquerque’s North Valley, and attended Valley High School. Her family is from Gonzales Ranch, NM, south of Las Vegas NM. She attributes her curiosity about plants and alternative medicine to her mother. Her mother used medicinal plants to heal different ailments. Tonita always had an inquisitive mind, and wanted to know how things worked. In 1994, when she began to have assorted illnesses and varied diagnosis, she wanted scientific answers, and turned to allopathic medicine. However, it was only with traditional medicine that she was able to heal. She learned through life experiences that true healing comes from being balanced Physically, Mentally, Emotionally, and Spiritually. This is why she feels she is finally listening to her soul and practicing Traditional Medicine. Her goal is to teach others to heal themselves. She understands that everyone needs to be accountable for their own healing and happiness. People simply need guidance, confidence, awareness and the tools to meet their goals. Her main goal is to work with the community providing treatments, and classes on traditional healing. Although she is inspired by different aspects of traditional medicine, her true passion is for the Temazcal She believes the root of all imbalances start with emotions, and with the Temazcal you can begin to heal your emotions.

Tonita recognizes that her road to healing began by first healing herself, and now is committed to teaching others. The path of a Traditional Healer is a life long journey, one she wholeheartedly embraces. She excitingly looks forward to future learning and continued growth.


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After registration please pay to secure your spot by pressing on the button below.  Classes are non-transferable and non-refundable.  Please not that classes may be an additional $10 through online payment due to 3rd party transaction fees.

How to pay with sliding scale prices: 

We try to make classes affordable to everyone yet economically viable for teachers.  We ask that you pay within a spectrum of  $40-75 for a single class.  The lower end of the scale applies to people on the lower bracket of income level, single parents, famers and artists.  We trust that you will honor our sliding scale policy and make the decision based on your personal ability to offer the proper exchange for classes.  You can choose to pay by clicking the donate button at the bottom of the page and entering the the price that feels accurate to you.  Please make sure to let us know which class your are signing up for by filling out the form as well.

Tribally Affiliated people of NM may pay on a donation basis this can include donations of fruit, food, money, or whatever you feel the teacher would appreciate. 

You can pay within the sliding scale spectrum by going to