Aug 212012

The “cat’s out of the bag”… the much beloved
Traditions In Western Herbalism Conference
is now

Medicine Of The People
The Folk Herbal Resurgence

…a name we believe does a better job of evoking the wild spirit and populist mission, incorrigible attitude and inimitable character of this one-of-a-kind event, coinciding with our move from Ghost Ranch to Mormon lake in the lush green Coconino Forest of Northern Arizona.  The umbrella website and community will be, with Medicine Of The People becoming the permanent name of our annual conference and celebration.  The TWH website will still be active as we gradually make all the changes.

Another factor in the change, was how many people were having trouble either remembering or saying “Traditions In Western Herbalism,” calling it a number of other things instead.  To be clear, we were never the “Ghost Ranch Conference,” and all the more so now that we have outgrown their facilities and found our great new site.  While our location will always be the Southwest – and the truly magical southwest aesthetic, spirit and vibe will forever remain a big part of its character and feel – we do not want to be thought of as the “Southwest Herbal Conference,” since we are an international event and not a regional one.  And while “Kiva’s Conference” might have a nice ring to it, it is far more “Your Conference,” created and sustained to serve the deepening and growing of this community and movement that Paul Bergner was first to dub an “Herbal Resurgence.”  Susun Weed and others have long used the term “the people’s medicine” to refer this folk healing practice meant to be accessible to all… and it is to all, that we dedicate our event’s name “Medicine Of The People.”

We originally titled our event the Traditions In Western Herbalism Conference in order to make clear our commitments to the neglected folk herbal traditions of the so-called Western World, and to a core of solid, usable herbal information.  Unfortunately, our original moniker fails to express the ways in which this utterly unique happening differs from is normally thought of as a “conference” of any kind, being held far from a big city in a wild natural setting, and intensely focused as we are on:
•Helping make herbal information and care available to all – the Medicine Of The People!
•Fostering and supporting the broadest range of herbal students, schools, organizations, and uncertified family practitioners as well as professionals
•Empowering and enabling all practitioners, in a time of increasing regulation and potential prohibition
•Helping preserve and share historic herbal traditions, and to honor and teach the history of herbalism
•Honoring and celebrating indigenous and folk herbal traditions, from all cultures and races
•Making the connection between effective herbal healing and relationship to the natural world
•Involving the personal, the spiritual, shamanic, mystical and mythical
•Drawing from both accepted scientific research, and research and conjecture from the frontiers of new science
•Promoting health as a matter of emotional, social and ecological wholeness, not just bodily wellness
•Encouraging not only herbal practice, but the aesthetic and art of herbalism
•Providing a hub and rendezvous point for all those drawn to this diverse community and profound resurgence
•Encouraging the involvement of youth, and preparation of coming generations
•Inspiring and exciting, stirring and emboldening, informing and inciting
•Assisting a vital culture shift, providing support to all you culture-shifters… and the folk herbal resurgence
•And providing a means, a place, and a reason to yearly gather and celebrate!

The transition is underway, the seeds planted, the logo revised and new hoodies and tees are ordered.  We hope you’re as happy as we are with the name of this Gathering, Rendezvous, Confluence, Intensive, and 4-Day College… nah, make that UnSchool… and Festival.  Party.  Reunion.  Revival.  Revolution.


See you September 13th, or seeya next year.

The website will be – with traffic temporarily still being sent to:

The Medicine Of The People

And you can leave out the word “conference.”


(Please RePost and Forward… thank you!)

One of several new tee and hoodie designs, soon to be sold at the conference and online

  One Response to “Medicine Of The People: TWHC No More!”

  1. I love the name! Even though I am not from the SW, I like what I am learning from your site about plants. Some grow here, but just learning is enough. Thanks for all the great things you do!
    Peace and Green Blessings, Susan

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