It takes a village, one heart at a time –It takes a heartbreak to awaken Holy Love This is a community of caring Caring and living inside my daughters death has become the answer to a call and my inspiration. Being with her as a caregiver came for tending the fire , showing up with an open heart to care for someone needing love and hand to be a way-finder within the dismembered labyrinth of our current health system and a desire to journey with her to share in her experiences as best as I could. I found my way and found the greatest of teachings. Caring for someone in need not to feel needed but as a service in the oneness of our time here as human beings. To witness and to celebrate Holy ground and Holy love. My teacher Eva’s field grew to other compassionate practitioners who also embodied compassionate service and brought light into their practice, Nurses, lab technicians, the nightly vampires that came to draw blood and gave love, the cleaning aids who light up the room with their warmth. Then my biggest teacher spirit found in my daughter who needed me to be there and to be her dancing partner, to share with her her fears of dancing with cancer. A six years path that has taken unexpected twists, brought us to scary places and light fields. Each new encounter a new line of poetry. So here it is sharing this story and holding space for being with living and dying.
Eva left this earthly plane June 19th 2013 four days before her 45th birthday. I am grateful to have found Along the way some inspired fellow beings who have been advisors, shared their compassion and wisdom and who share this vision for complementary medicine, specifically a form of deep and engaged holy love.
Said Osio as founder, curator-editor, image maker, publisher, and a Sacred Passages Death Doula
Said Osio is a visual artist and has been trained in imagery and alchemical retreats/meditation and was a student for over thirty years with the late Sufi Master Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan. His teacher Pir Vilayat had a strong creative influence on Said’s inner imaginal body of work in that the role of performance, ritual and healing were the building blocks, metaphors, montages, songs, visual landscapes, and stories … that lived in his teacher who incorporated music and theatre in his body of teachings and producing in Said a LIMINAL PLAYGROUND or landscapes / pattern language of the soul as creative intelligence. Seminal influences are Meher Baba (The Ancient One) and his quintessential works on death and reincarnation. Currently, Said works to bring to the community experiences that engage one to embrace the conversation of living and dying as well as with health professionals creating presentations and shows that help awaken the sacred in the everyday challenges of being and suffering.
“I strive to actualize purpose in creating a healing prayerful expression on one hand as a mosaic of bits and fragments of personal beliefs and a synthesis of Levi-Strauss’ theory on symbols (images) that suggest that symbolic healing involves mapping a personal problem onto a collective mythic world through emotionally charged symbols. The emotion evoked by the symbols then insures that manipulating the symbols within that mythic world will lead to corresponding transformations (in this case for inner well being ) as a journey on the path of spirit.” Ultimately ,Third Messenger is a way to deepen compassionate service and bringing forward purpose that is embodied in our union, a divinity and sacredness of being. Additional information on performance pieces , retreats and other offerings/ceremonies along with Greg Lathrop and Jason Hebal at http://aqteshnaana.bandcamp.com or the gallery site www.nadazul.org.
Gregory Lathrop RN, HTPa Co-Director / Holistic/Hospice Nursing Advisor/Fire Keeper
Gregory Lathrop is licensed as a registered nurse. Greg’s nursing experience of over 35 years has included acute care, critical care, emergency care, air-medical transport, hospice care and integrative healthcare. In his private practice as a Holistic Nursing Specialist he honors the principles of conscious dying as Sacred Passage Doula, focusing on care of the dying in the home environment. Reinforcing the plan of care established by Hospice, his goal is to demystify the stages of the dying process, increase beauty, pleasure and contentment, provide emotional and spiritual support and engage in conversations about dying while acknowledging the mysteries and miracles during this sacred time.
Through teaching, coaching and assistance with personal care, his goal is to cultivate ease with client and family during a time which can often feel very uneasy. In his experience, integrating holistic therapies such as Healing Touch, Guided Imagery, Aromatherapy, Music and simple relaxing massage, among others, can greatly enhance a sense of well-being physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
His practice also includes Licensure as HeartMath Coach and Certification as HeartMath Trainer reinforcing the principles of HeartMath related to self-regulation, resilience and optimal function.
In addition to this experience, Greg accepted the opportunity to study Traditional Indigenous Medicine for over 13 years with his late “teacher” Will Rockingbear, because of a profound sense of the power of ceremony in the path of the sacred in being with dying. An embodiment of these teachings; “I would prefer that you don’t just take care of me. I would rather that you Love me.”
He is an accomplished Musician and Native Flautist.
Jason Hebal NCLMBT as Guide and Teacher
Jason is a massage therapist and meditation instructor, Certified in massage, energetic healing, & meditation instruction through the North Carolina School of Natural Healing. He has studied clinical aromatherapy through the Aromatherapy School. Inspired deeply by Cherokee teachings of the beauty path through Will Rockingbear, he has participated in community for over 13 years with ceremonies and mystical teachings helping us to awaken awareness and be in right relations with all things. Continuing to explore indigenous wisdom he journeyed to Mexico, Brazil and Peru working with retreat centers and local medicine men, facilitating and participating in ceremonies, healing work and sharing teachings of the Flower of Life sacred geometry as it pertains to our light-body and flow of energy. As a musician with Aqteshna Ana many pieces come together creating a sacred space of contemplative fusion, a time for deep attunement with sound, imagery, and poetry new and ancient.
Rae Booth, CPCC/Entrepreneur/Healer
Rae Booth is passionate about finding new ways to “age in place”. Her vast background as an Organizational Developer in Corporate America prepared her for the journey she has embarked on in the past 10 years. Rae is the owner/Director of a local, Assisted Care home SilverBell in Fletcher NC and non-medical home care company Griswold , where she matches qualified, professional caregivers up with people in the community who need love and support to live out their lives in the surroundings they call home. Twelve years ago, during a vision quest Rae learned that she is called to do this work and to develop a new way for the next generations to look at aging, death/dying and how they can live out the rest of their lives in a more conscious and connected way within their community.s known as a “change agent”. Her training and life experiences are to facilitate groups of people through identifying, designing and developing a vision into action. Her successes have always been with transitions. The biggest transition that she was blessed to be a part of was the passing of her father. This experience propelled her into her current work of aiding others in the biggest transition of their lives. She is compassionate, caring and wants to make a difference in the way we view death/dying and aging with grace.
Meredith Springs, Social Organizer, Funeral Director, Decompoaut
NC Funeral Service Licensee, Social Organizer, Decomponaut
Meredith was born in High Point, NC and graduated from Duke University. Wife, and mother of two boys, Meredith trained and worked as a Rolfer. She is now a NC Funeral Service Licensee at West Funeral Home in Weaverville, NC. She enjoys a kundalini yoga practice at www.longtimesunyoganc.com, and her dream is to build a cob house.
This adopted daughter of Said Osio is fluent in Spanish, a notary, and trained facilitator in Advance Care Planning (designating a Health Care Agent and completing a Living Will).
Meredith is a born crier through her paternal grandmother, Mozelle Lillie Frazier Parker, who told her that “Frazier women have always been criers.” When death occurs, feeling our feelings is the first step of the new journey.
Care during death will be, for many of us, the most important civil liberty we exercise. With Third Messenger, we bring movement, sound, community and the old knowledge to death conversation.
Karen Sanders, MSN, RN, AHN-BC, HWNC-BC
Karen works in private practice as an RN Patient Advocate and Holistic Transitions Coach in Asheville, NC. She also works as an Instructor for the NC Board of Nursing teaching an Ethical/Legal Decision-Making Course to disciplined Nurses, a Holistic Stress Management Instructor, Faculty Assistant and Student Advisor for Wisdom of the Whole Coaching Academy, as well as a national speaker and lecturer on Nurse Coaching, Becoming an Informed Consumer/Advocate when Using the Healthcare System, and Self Care Strategies for Nurses, Health Care Providers, and Seniors. In 2016, she founded her own company, RNPatientAdvocacyNC.com, and KarenSandersTransitionsCoaching.com. Having been born with a gift for understanding and navigating through darkness, Karen is able to, and has a deep passion for, supporting others as they deal with crises and life challenges and assisting, teaching and coaching people in the nursing and healthcare professions through career, life and professional transitions. She obtained a Baccalaureate in Nursing from Old Dominion University and a Master of Science in Nursing, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has 40 years of Nursing experience in multiple leadership and clinical positions.
As a Holistic Transitions Coach to Nurses, she understands and has deep compassion for the challenges of offering support to patients in crisis while dealing with the undervaluation of nursing and walking through our own life challenges. Her approach to coaching involves helping others understand the connection between mind, body, spirit and emotions to awaken the best of “Who You Are” and to help step into the signature of our own soul. As an RN Patient Advocate, Karen helps patients maneuver through a convoluted, complex Healthcare system with nurturing tips on how to care for self. Karen offers clients vast experience in nursing and healthcare administration, a gift for clearly communicating complex medical information, and an ability to intuitively know the best practices for guiding clients through whatever health challenges are being faced.
Aditi Sethi-Brown Hospice and Palliative Medicine Physician
Aditi Sethi-Brown is a hospice and palliative medicine physician who is committed to caring for those aging and dying in our culture. She is interested in contemplative approaches to death and dying and seeks to offer practical tools and meditations to those interested in contemplative practices during this sacred time in their and their loved ones lives. She also has a deep passion and interest in the power of sacred sound and healing mantras to deepen the experience of life and death. These mystical sound patterns have been used for thousands of years to focus the mind, open the heart and expand consciousness. She offers these ancient melodies and mantras using voice, harmonium, shruti box, and harp to those experiencing transitions in their lives. She continues to explore ways to enhance and deepen the experiences of those aging and dying and to reconnect with the mystery of this human experience.