Walking With Grief

Guest Price: $110.00$200.00

Members receive 15% discount

Breaking Open our Hearts – Learning to Walk with Personal Grief

A Mini-retreat-like experience with others who are experiencing loss

Note:  There are two separate mini-retreats on personal grief and collective grief.  You can attend one of these or both.

We are remade in times of grief, broken apart and reassembled.”  ~ Francis Wheeler

Where do you stand in your own Tragic Gap of who you were and who you are becoming?   We will explore how to make our way through the “Silent Lonely Void”.  Reb Zlaman taught that this is a place we each “crawl into . . . in order to just let your wounds be alone….because you can’t stand to be around and be vulnerable.  But being invulnerable also means not to be in contact.”  Using Kabbalah teachings, Nonviolent Communication and Courage & Renewal Practices, you will experience a safe & trustworthy space to explore your own questions without having to find “the” answer.  

In working with our own personal grief and loss, we will practice tzimtzum, contracting in order to slow down.  We will explore a deeper, authentic conversation within ourselves of our own experience of this “Silent Lonely Void” and our mourning process.   This deep listening process will help us name and hold opposites that are involved in our loss, such as holding both our brokenness and wholeness.  Experience both a compassionate presence with your grief process, awaking your “resonant self”,  along with accompaniment with others who have a shared reality of loss.

This invitational work will help you find your own wisdom and hear the collective wisdom of the group through individual reflection, small group or pairs interaction, an actual walk & talk with another via phone, and sharing into our circle.  This creative use of zoom will allow us to join together, take intentional contemplative breaks, a lovely outside lunch break, and weave back into our circle. This is a trauma informed event, inviting you to have choice and invitational focus in all activities.


Breaking Open our Hearts to Each Other – Collective Grief of our Times

Note:  There are two separate mini-retreats on personal grief and collective grief.  You can attend one of these or both.

“There is nothing more whole than a broken heart.  If your own suffering does not serve to unite you with the suffering of others, if your own imprisonment does not join you with others in prison, if you in your smallness remain alone, then your pain will have been for naught.”    Chassidic Kotzker Rebbe

Join us as we walk the “dark places” together . . . to explore and be honest in your emotions, trusting that whatever arises, you will be able to hold it within our “zoom circle”.   Trusting our interconnectedness with the Great Mystery and each other, this will be an opportunity for you to bring your larger pains for the world, any losses that you have experienced, and the suffering & inequities you have witnessed during this pandemic.  Using Courage & Renewal practices and principles, we will create a safe and trustworthy container to explore our collective grief.  

Based on the work of Joanna Macy and Francis Wheeler, we will rest upon and rise up through collective rituals, releasing our communal grief.  Using Macy’s The Great Turning Spiral Model, you will experience holding opposites of deep grief and Active Hope.  Mourning our grief, in our death- and loss-denying society, often becomes an isolated, private process, separating us from our self and others.  Collective grief, a lost communal tradition, is where we claim space and time to experience a soulful intertwining to acknowledge this deeply felt pain for our world.  

What is present in your inner life from these past months of quarantine, illness, and loss?  As you take a breath in, the practice of tzimtzum, our inward contraction and quiet will invite a collective naming and authenticity of the toil from these times.

Notice the guilt, overwhelm, anger or other emotions in this small, still moment.  As we exhale, we contribute to each other in giving voice to what we are holding.   The layers of collective grief may also include honoring generational, historical and ancestral pain, stimulated by these unpredictable and challenging times.  This is a trauma informed event, inviting you to have choice and invitational focus on all activities.  Our “zoom circle” will provide us with creative movement between individual and collective reflection and pairs and smaller groups.

Instructor: Susan Kaplan, MSW, MPA, RYT

Susan Kaplan, MSW, MPA, RYT, has an integrative social work practice, Listening & Leading From Within, LLC, where she provides coaching, training and facilitation.   She works with individuals, families, teams, organizations, leadership and staff development, and community groups.  She is a Certified Nonviolent Communication Trainer, a Courage & Renewal Facilitator (Parker Palmer’s work), a life long Jewish mystic, Hatha Yoga Teacher and a Professional Storyteller. Susan has had a variety of personal losses and has experienced the power of collective grief rituals, valuing mutuality, healing, and the collective practice of loving kindness and open heartedness. 


SKU: Walking with Grief Category: