Adult Grief Program for Small Groups - Lesson 5
Station #Four on the Journey: “Crossing the Threshold”
Healing, Integrating, and Reconciling
Looking at the hatch-marks on your loss line, what would they be saying if they could speak?
Guiding Quotation: Louis L’Amour
“There will be a time when you believe everything is finished; That will be the beginning.”
Invitation to the Project:
Meditation or Closing Quotation:
“Pain is the Price of Freedom”
Adapted from the writing of Michael Singer
Check in: Pass the talking stick to the left (from the heart)
“Yes…………And” (Can you feel how unifying this pair of words is?)
Quotation: Louis L’Amour
“There will be a time when you believe everything is finished;
That will be the beginning.”
Follow up and sharing:
Loving letters to Grief
Collage: “The Way it was, the way it is, the way I want it to be”
Teaching point: Draw a horizontal line on the board (loss line)
Looking at your loss line and believing that it’s you is like looking in a dirty, smeared mirror – you aren’t seeing your true self!
Bondage is being enmeshed, identified and entangled with grief
Freedom is to be found in how you “relate” to your losses
If you were to draw a vertical line through the middle of the loss line, what would it represent? (Draw a vertical line down through the middle)
Horizontal lines represent the losses of a lifetime. Vertical Lines represent “Lines of Reconciliation” – the ways we thrive in the face of suffering.
Invitation to the project: weaving
This project is truly a “threshold moment”. We’re looking at all the ways that we can weave our lives together; it speaks of integration, wholeness, and not just accepting, but embracing all that is. “Yes….And!”
Explanation: Dear Friends, this lesson is critical – possibly a favorite of all participants and our team. It seems to be a point in the program in which we often see a “shift”. It’s a beautiful project and you will love it. It can be very simple or quite extravagant – we have personally done both. The idea is to be very conscious as you weave: first the horizontal pieces that signify losses; then the vertical pieces that signify the highs, the joys, the thriving, the beauty of life. Name each thread, each piece, and take your time. Be with it and make it your own masterpiece. You will love and honor it for the rest of your life.
For materials, you can go to nature; go online and get yourself a kiddie’s weaving loom and colorful loops; go to the garage, your art studio, or workshop. Everything is representative of suffering or thriving. Be creative and love this journey! It’s one of the BEST!
For more ideas, you might want to go back to an earlier article: How to Take Care of Yourself when Grieving
Closing quotation: Marcus Aurelias
Check out: Pass the talking stick to the left (from the heart)
“In the Bag”:
Lesson #5 Talking stick
Box of pens Candle/Lighter
Tissues Weaving (Your example, to demonstrate) Singing bowl, or bell
You have power over your mind, not outside events.
Realize this and you will find strength.
Your own happiness is up to you;
Life may not give you what you want, but it will give you what you need;
There is good in everyone;
True peace comes from within.
True understanding is to see the events of life in this way:
'You are here for my benefit, though rumor paints you otherwise.'
And everything is turned to one's advantage when he greets a
situation like this: ‘You are the very thing I was looking for.’
Truly, whatever arises in life is the right material to bring about your growth and the growth of those around you. This, in a word, is art -- and this art called 'life' is a practice suitable to both men and gods. Everything contains some special purpose and a hidden blessing; what then could be strange or arduous when all of life is here to greet you like an old and faithful friend?
~ Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, 167 AD
There will be a time when you believe
everything is finished.
That will be the beginning.
~ Louis L’Amour
Meditation: Pain is the Price of Freedom
Adapted from The Untethered Soul, by Michael Singer
Sit quietly now with your pain. See where it comes from. Where does it reside in your body? Know that real growth comes from facing your pain. This is where you’re different from the crowd of people who surround you all the time. You’ve chosen to look at your pain and to deal with it.
When we feel pain, we want to pull away, shut down, clamp down on it, protect ourselves, resist or defend. I invite you to just relax and release it – it’s just energy.
If you want to be free, accept the pain in your heart. On the other side of pain is freedom. Here we want to consider the concept of “yes………….and”. Yes, I feel pain……………..and I want to be free.
Give your pain the space it needs to move and release and burn through you. Yes, you may actually feel heat, like you’re on fire as this pain moves through you. Stay with it.
To feel the presence of God within you, to feel great love and freedom, you must be willing to remain conscious in the face of pain and to work with your heart to relax and remain open.
When you are comfortable with pain passing through you, you will be free.
There is an ocean of love and joy behind all of this fear and pain. That force will sustain you by feeding your heart from deep within. Over time you will form an intensely personal relationship with this inner power. It will replace the relationship you have now with inner pain, fear and disturbance. Now peace and love will run your life – you will be truly free! “Yes……………….and!”