Vitalism, the recognition that the physical body is animated by a vital life force, is the foundation of most natural healing therapies. The forefathers of alternative medicine discovered methods of healing the body by stimulating this life force. In Vitalism: The History of Herbalism, Homeopathy, and Flower Essences, Matthew Wood describes the theories, lives, and work of nine great physicians who laid the groundwork for natural medicine.
Matthew Wood has been a practicing herbalist since 1982. In a period when many authors and lecturers are merely "arm chair herbalists" who offer theories and opinions based on book learning, and others have turned to the exotic traditions of India or China, he has been an active practitioner of traditional Western herbalism. He has helped tens of thousands of clients over the years, with many difficult health problems. While Matthew believes in the virtue of many other healing modalities, he has always been inspired to learn, preserve, and practice the tradition of herbal medicine descending to us from our European, Anglo-American, and Native American heritage. He is a member of the American Herbalists Guild (registered herbalist) and has earned his Masters of Science degree from the Scottish School of Herbal Medicine (accredited by the University of Wales).