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Publisher's Summary

All ancient and indigenous peoples insisted their knowledge of plant medicines came from the plants themselves and not through trial-and-error experimentation. Less well known is that many Western peoples made this same assertion. There are, in fact, two modes of cognition available to all human beings - the brain-based linear and the heart-based holistic. The heart-centered mode of perception can be exceptionally accurate and detailed in its information gathering capacities if, as indigenous and ancient peoples asserted, the heart's ability as an organ of perception is developed.

Author Stephen Harrod Buhner explores this second mode of perception in great detail through the work of numerous remarkable people, from Luther Burbank, who cultivated the majority of food plants we now take for granted, to the great German poet and scientist Goethe and his studies of the metamorphosis of plants. Buhner explores the commonalities among these individuals in their approach to learning from the plant world and outlines the specific steps involved. Listeners will gain the tools necessary to gather information directly from the heart of Nature, to directly learn the medicinal uses of plants, to engage in diagnosis of disease, and to understand the soul-making process that such deep connection with the world engenders.

©2004 Stephen Harrod Buhner (P)2017 Tantor

What members say

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Nice info, but the reader, well...

You get distracted from the info, by the reader's perfomance. It is nice not to sound monotonous and give some emotion to the text, but this gentleman, exagerates juuuuuust a little.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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narrator distracts from content

I've been trying to finish this book for a long time and find myself getting frustrated and switching to something else often. I think there are valuable things in this book. For the most part all content is obscured by the reader's over-performative cadence. Sounds like he is telling a really juicy story, only the tone is the same for hours and the emphasis is usually in meaningless verbal patterns, like a tempo. Sounds like he loves the sound of his own voice and is not focusing on the content. Simple reading would be better.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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A philosophy for living and sensing more

I liked the author’s encouragement to sense more, to recognize and appreciate the multi dimensional reality of nature, the intertwining of quotes from fellow philosophers, and the inclusion of assignments for developing one’s own ability perceive more. As a student of stoic philosophy, I found this book to be a meaningful read at this stage of my life — adding another layer of understanding about the living world we share with others. If you want to better understand what it means to be present in the moment, you will find something useful in this book.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Diana
  • Antelope Valley, CA, United States
  • 06-14-18

Lovely, lively, friendly narration

This book is in two parts, and the first part is scientific and lays a foundation for what comes in the second part, which is more about the art of healing and perception.

The narration was perfect for this because it is lively enough to capture and hold my attention during the science, biology, and discussion in minute detail of things like electro-magnetism and the heart or brain or how coastlines are measured and how math works . . . when I am listening to such discussions a narrator can make or break the audio book for me. Thankfully, this narrator kept it all very interesting. No dry monotone, but a loving, friendly, lively and Interesting narration kept my attention.

The second part of this audio book is about the application and use of perception in the healing art - the understanding of not only plants, but of earth and the inner workings of the human body.

Here, the listener realizes that this book is not going to be for everybody and if these ideas are new, it will be shocking and unbelievable and some other listeners may respond with vigorous denials that any of this is possible.

By now, I have come across a variety of books written by physicists, biologists, medical doctors, scientists, and people without degrees but who are Conscious and have an ability to focus and perceive and apply intent. So, this book is not shocking to me, but instead is delightful.

Perhaps the author wishes that more people can achieve his mastery. After reading a variety of such books which, generally are an application of consciousness, perception, and focus in a person's field of interest, I realize that I don't have the necessary skill set or desire to master the same as what I have read about. But, I love knowing there are people on this planet that have such abilities and knowledge. I love that they share what they have learned and how they do it. It is comforting to know there are such experts in this world.

My hope is that this book will find and encourage more people to understand, perceive, and learn how to apply healing as an art. More Healers are needed.

Also, if this is the first such book a Western-trained or -minded person comes across, I hope they continue to read and explore these types of ideas - to do with Consciousness - to do with the combination of Science and Spirituality. And, not just in plants, but in a variety of fields.

There are scattered across the human population people like this author - who have opened their awareness and used what many human beings have no idea that we humans are capable of doing. It may take years of learning, focus, and practice to become a master. But to denigrate or laugh at what is in this book only shows ignorance and a closed mind.

The narration is beautiful and comes with an undercurrent of love or caring. The lively emotive way of speaking of this narrator was perfect for this book and was needed by me to hold my interest, especially in the first part which was really intense on laying a scientific foundation for what was to come in the second part.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Performance stilted

Lovely book full of intriguing ideas and inspiring quotes. Now I need to read Walden.

While a polished recording, the reader's voice is a little too formal. I would have preferred this in a woman's gentle voice since we hear enough male voices in this world.

A good book for opening minds and hearts. Practical tips for how to get out of your brain and sense with your heart.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Avoid At All Costs

This is condescending psuedo science composed 90 percent of quotes taken out of context--predominantly Henry David Thoreau. Like any grandiose religious text (or especially any philosophy that entices with the word "secrets") this book works by presenting itself as an inadequate metaphor while confidently repeating the mantras of vaguely identifiable ideals. There is literally one concrete fact in here (about the benefits of skunk cabbage) and the rest is an exercise in verbal oscillation. Readers/listeners are better off going into the woods and/or reading the texts of the various quoted authors.

Not to mention, this book is dangerous on the level of anti vaccination and flat earthers. If you find value in tapering common sense, then sure, you might enjoy this.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Antony Christie
  • 04-09-18

Quite possibly the best book I ever 'ingested'

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Secret Teachings of Plants?

Section Two: The Heart; amazing lesser-known facts about the heart including its measurable magnetic field and how the heart acts as a sensory organ. Also how to develop our hearts so we can communicate with plants to gain wisdom about our own, or other peoples, bodies in the pursuit of harmony.

Any additional comments?

Can't wait for more Buhner books to come out in audio format!!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-27-18

Expanding awareness

Beautiful book with scientific background to expand our awareness and consciousness on topics often overlooked. Great storytelling and made my heart sing. The narrator a little too enthusiastic on quotes