Ancestral, Folk, & Indigenous Herbalism and Healing Intensive

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

Cost: $525 10 days or $325 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.


Bernadette Torres

Topic:  Harvesting Heart Medicine & Herbal Baths. We will talk about respectful ways to harvest our Plants, preserve them for Winter use, to nurture and sustain us through the dark cold days. 

Bernadette Torres, Grandmother, Meadowcine Woman, Teacher, Herbalist, Master Naturalist,  Reiki Master, Health Facilitator, Director of Shabeta's Sheri Garden.  She began her journey with medicinal plants and healing as a child in the mountains of Taos, New Mexico where her father introduced her to her first healing plants. As a mother, she grew her own medicinal plants to keep her family well while using herbs in cooking, teas, tinctures, oils, salves and homeopathic remedies.  

She worked in health food stores since 2004, learning the valuable connection between health and food. Recognizing the nutritional value in many plants, she became passionate about learning all she could from many amazing herbalist, curanderos and healers from all over the world.   In the last decade, she expanded her scope by studying botany, plant identification and herbal medicine making with Bert Norgorden, MA who is well-loved herbalist and nature photographer. She was also blessed to study with these fabulous plant people: since 2004 to present Teresa Crosier, DOM ;  Flordemayo and Reyna Salazar, Curanderas. In 2004 she completed  the Foundations in Herbal Medicine course created by Tieraona Low Dog, MD and in 2010 -2012 was honored to facilitated this intensive 9 month course. 

Since 2006, her journey brought her to study the Ashéninka indigenous healing techniques from the central jungle of Peru with her partner Ashéninka Mino.  Together they run an outdoor garden school where they can demonstrate the Plant life from seed to fruit. In 2009, she began teaching herbal healing at New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics which included full day Plant ID walks in the Sandia Mountains. NMSNT is the only nationally recognized massage school that offers an herbal program. 



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.


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.


Register Now

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.