The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Folk healing remedies important in Mexican therapy

By Tristian Evans/reporter

The director of the Irving Family Advocacy Center spoke to a packed room of South Campus students about Mexican therapeutic techniques Oct. 25.

Stella Rodriguez, who has researched the techniques for 25 years, said she grew up in a family who believed in and used folk healing remedies. When Rodriguez went to college, she found the subject neglected in her psychology classes.

The technique Rodriguez talked about in-depth was “nuevo curanderismo.”

“[It is] one of the most important gifts,” she said. “[It represents] a legacy of survival.”

Curanderismo is a healing tradition that focuses on dealing with both negative and positive aspects of a person’s life. The three strands of nuevo curanderismo focus on the health and healing of mind, body and soul.

The technique has its origins in the Latino and African cultures, but Rodriguez encouraged all students to study curanderismo.

“Even if you’re not African or Latino, curanderismo is important,” she said. “I think a lot of these [beliefs] are universal.”

The Aztecs relied on the community of healers, and the same healing herbs used then have survived and are still in use today, Rodriguez said. 

When explaining how one became a curanderismo practitioner, she said one either was born into it or became one after suffering a huge trauma.

“You suddenly feel called to heal,” she said.

A big part of curanderismo is the importance of community, Rodriguez said. She said charlatanism is a serious issue because when a family finds itself separated from the curanderismo community, the family becomes vulnerable to all types of deceivers and false healers.

“Families were charged thousands of dollars because they were being told that a hex had been placed on them,” she said. ”These were poor families who were selling homes, cars.”

Rodriguez said a true healer doesn’t charge money but sees curanderismo as a calling.

Rodriguez stressed the importance of family and community and said the two work hand in hand.

“If you have a healing gift, it’s meant to nourish the community,” she said.

When asked why she thought it was important for students to be aware of the different forms of healing, she said, “I was in your seats once. I had great professors and teachers. Anytime I can give back, I do it.”

Psychology assistant professor Ticily Medley’s department of behavioral sciences hosted the event.

“I think the college environment is a place to be exposed to new ideas,” she said. “This seminar is a very different way of looking at health. It [contained] very diverse and relative ideas.”

South Campus student Jordan Pouncil said he left the seminar with a new outlook.

“I learned more than I had heard of on this topic,” he said. ”It [was more] than I had expected.”

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