Atava is inspired by the folk, indigenous and ancestral healing traditions of the world. She is dedicated to remembering and honoring the healing traditions of her Mexican, Polish, Diné (Navajo) and Hungarian ancestors. She also is committed to creating supportive spaces for others to remember their own ancestors and ancestral medicine. Atava especially loves to connect people to our common ancestors, the plants.
Atava has been studying and practicing healing arts for over 20 years and has an undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a graduate degree in Indigenous Mind from Naropa University Oakland. Atava is a professionally registered clinical herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild and is also certified in both Acupressure and Jin Shin Jyutsu®. She is also committed to supporting traditional indigenous healers by providing spaces for them to share their teachings and to offer their healing.
Atava began studying curanderismo in 1999 with maestras Dona Enriqueta Contreras and Estela Roman. As a student in the Indigenous Mind program she was mentored by indigenous elders to support her own ancestral reconnection and healing. In the Indigenous Mind Program she focused on her father’s Polish Slavic ancestry and wrote about this experience in her thesis entitled “Journey to my Polish Indigenous Mind.”
Atava has taught in schools and universities throughout Northern California, including San Francisco State, UC Berkeley, JFK University and the California Institute of Integral Studies. Atava also has a busy clinical practice where she helps people of all ages with their physical, emotional and spiritual health. Her healing work is a unique and powerful combination of curanderismo, herbal medicine, flower essence therapy, therapeutic dream work, and energetic bodywork.
As a healer, Atava is committed to grass-roots health care that provides access to people based on need, not just based on income. She is involved in many clinics that offer free natural medicine to women in need including the Charlotte Maxwell Center and the Healing Clinic Collective.
Atava’s business, Ancestral Apothecary, also manufactures a small herbal product line. Her website is: www.ancestralapothecary.com. You can make an appointment to see her in her Oakland office or online on Schedulicity.