Posts in Grief
Penguin Death and the Wild Scope of Grief

Recent news reports have revealed the decimation of one of the world’s largest Emperor Penguin colonies. Deciding not to ignore this situation but, rather, to open to the pain of this scope of loss, Will finds himself wading deeper into the process of active grieving that he has undertaken since the deaths of his father, son, and step-father.

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Falling Out Of Time: An experiment in “embodied reading”

Will’s reflections on our four-week community grief event that engaged with David Grossman’s astonishing book Falling Out of Time. Will shares some of our activities and insights and discusses some of the powerful ideas and questions provoked by Grossman’s text. We encourage everyone, especially those of you interested in grief and death literacy, communal mourning, and creative approaches to loss, to read this book!

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The Task of Nothing

There are multiple benefits to thinking of death often, not least of which is the overcoming of fear and the ability to sense new threads connecting me with my loved ones who have died. Similarly, to think of nothingness is to press the mind to its limit and expand our cognitive maps of the universe. If welcoming thoughts of death into our daily consciousness can demystify the great equalizer that so many people work feverishly to avoid, then coming to grips with nothing can throw the wild variety of our being into relief and perhaps help us to engage with the Great Mystery.

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What about Everything?

In this parallel post to “The Task of Nothing,” Will combines the grief work and educational insights that we at Inviting Abundance work with clients to cultivate. Specifically, Will is interested in figuring out what “Everything” is all about, and how the analysis of this idea helps him to process the death of his son.

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Death Literacy and Celebrating the Departed

How we think of death, how often we think of it, and the desire held by so many to ignore it altogether culminates in the multifaceted notion of Death Literacy. Forwarded as the main theme of the 3rd Annual Death Faire, Death Literacy helps us cultivate community resilience and individual creative grief practices. In this post, Will reflects on these themes and the artistic elements of the Faire, held November 3, 2018, in Pittsboro, North Carolina.

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Celebrating (with) Our Dead: Samhain & Dia de los Muertos

Halloween was the first big holiday that Will and I (Joanne) had to face after our first son Finlay’s inexplicable death during childbirth in June 2014. Other people’s kids coming to our front door wearing costumes, smiling, laughing, and being so… well… alive seemed like the worst possible thing that we could endure at that time.

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Abundance Thinking & Permaculture Design

Permaculture design aims to generate and harvest abundance throughout the year. I completed my Permaculture Design Certificate in February 2016, when I was beginning my 2nd trimester of pregnancy with Phalen. It was an emotional time for me as I felt guided to permaculture by my first son Finlay, whose death threw my entire life into question, and I was now physically sharing this learning space with his brother.

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Holding Space & Sitting with Grief

On a beautiful Saturday morning we met in the home of a workshop attendee (herself a palliative care doctor) and dove into the material. Deeply impacted by the influential work of Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt, Amy brought our focus to three main related areas of discussion: companioning the bereaved, strengthening support networks, and the place/purpose of ritual.

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“Dead Reckoning”: Finding one’s way amid life’s challenges

In order to live and thrive while grieving for the deaths of my son, father, stepfather, and friends, I have to reckon with death: How do these people’s deaths affect my ability to navigate through the social world? How do their deaths change my relation to life, generally? Is death really an end, or is it more like a threshold that opens onto a new beginning? By asking these philosophical questions, I feel that I am arranging the deaths of my family members into an order, one that acts like a trail capable of leading me in a specific direction.

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