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Ask the Medicine Man

May 30, 1999|BOOTH MOORE

Internet-based medicinal herb resource Allherb.com (http://www.allherb.com) is going back to its roots, so to speak. The Web site has enlisted Shaman Don Antonio Montero Pisco to answer consumer questions about herbs via e-mail.

Pisco is the curator of the ethnobotanical garden at the Amazonian Center for Environmental Education and Research in the Peruvian rain forest, where he cultivates plants to use for healing. Don't think for a minute that he spends all his time in front of a computer screen, however. An assistant prints out e-mail at the center, then travels by boat into the forest to reach Pisco.

The shaman has been a practicing medicine man since his early 20s. He discovered his gift at age 6 after being left alone for a month to survive in the forest. He believes the ability to connect his spirit to the forest enabled him to survive.

Pisco can answer queries about medicinal plants, correct doses for different kinds of patients and ailments, and other general questions on herbs and herbalism.

But don't expect an immediate response. It will take two to three weeks to receive an answer.

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