Local herbalist hosts traditional healing workshops


Morgaine Witriol, a certified clinical herbalist and intuitive healer and Tonita Gonzales, a traditional healer, herbalist and acupuncturist, are hosting a two-day workshop Saturday and Sunday (Nov. 11-12) in Taos.

Gonzales' class will be focused on grief, loss and intergenerational trauma as well as food and plants as medicine. The workshop will be held from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. each day at Tierra Drala in El Prado. Students can register by calling (914) 400-7558 or by visiting the website and filling out the registration form at nativerootshealing.com.

Classes are by donation to people from New Mexico tribes and pueblos. The workshop costs $125 for other participants.

Gonzales earned a bachelor's of science in mathematics, and bachelor of arts in graphic design from The American University in Washington, D.C. She completed studies in traditional medicine at the University of Mexico, Morelos, at Centro de Desarollo Humano Hacia La Comunidad. Gonzales' family is from Gonzales Ranch, south of Las Vegas, N.M. and she credits her interest in Native medicinal plants to her mother.

Witriol apprenticed with the late Mayan healer Don Heriberto Cocom in the rainforest of Belize and continued her studies at the Northwest School for Botanical Studies, California School of Herbal Studies, The Blue Otter School and The Dandelion Herbal Center.

The workshop is the latest in Witriol's efforts to bring herbalists and healers to Taos for workshops. In the summer, Witriol coordinated an Indigenous Herbalism and Healing Series taught by several traditional healers and/or teachers including Henrietta Gomez of Taos Pueblo, Lakota Sundance Chief Howard Badhand, Margaret Garcia of Taos, Emigdio Ballon director of the Institute of Natural and Traditional Knowledge and the Agricultural Director of the Pueblo of Tesuque.

Witriol has plans to offer another series of workshops in 2018, working with UNM and Tierra Drala Permaculture Farm in El Prado.