I don’t have much knowledge yet in grief–so this massive darkness makes me small. -Ranier Maria Rilke
Many of us living in these times are not so well-versed in the ways of grief. Though we all experience grief and loss, in many modern cultures, grief is pathologized, or is a temporary state to heal, or “get through.” If grief is entered, it is often practiced in solitude. This can especially true for men, as many of us have been socialized away from feeling and expressing our grief, and rarely do we get the opportunity to be with the mystery of grief in the company of other men.
In this gathering, we will come together to tend the well of grief as a circle of brothers.
Over the course of the day together, we will simmer together in the waters of grief. We will listen deeply to each other share the grief and loss we are holding, and recognize that we do not have to hold it alone.
The grief we carry can come in many forms. Loss, heartbreak, woundedness, rage, numbness, our unlived lives, how we carry the state of our culture or the natural world. When we tend this grief we carry, these practices can be what Francis Weller refers to as soul-hygiene- just as we tend to the state of our teeth, or our bodies, we can tend to the state of our soul by experiencing the grief we carry.
We will speak and listen to each other from the heart. We will also engage in short writing practices and guided inquiry to help access different, non-habitual aspects of the mind and psyche.
We will also explore embodiment and movement practices that help us to fully inhabit our bodies, particularly areas like the jaw, the chest, the lower belly, and our breathing, where tension patterns can block or inhibit the movement of grief.
We will conclude the day with a grief ritual practice together.
It feels important to hold a space specifically for men, as there can often be cultural conditioning that discourages men from accessing grief, particularly in the company of others. If you are a trans man, or non-binary and are drawn to attend, you are most welcome.
This gathering is about ordinariness, authenticity and connection. It is not a morbid event, nor is it about catharsis or any kind of performance. It is a container where we can hold, and tend to the needs of the soul around grief and loss. As teachers like Joanna Macy, Francis Weller and Martin Prechtel so eloquently express, grief is intimately connected with gratitude, praise and celebration of this precious life, or as Khalil Gibran wrote “The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.”
Please know it’s a come-as-you-are event with zero pressure as to how you express grief or not. You may weep, you may be a quiet witness, you may be numb, you may be surprised. However you come, your presence is a valued thread in our community tapestry. All that’s required is your humanity and your willingness to be present. You’re welcome to come whether you are grieving, tearful, pissed off, numb, enraged, or full of trepidation. You are welcome just as you are.
To have your grief held and witnessed in the compassionate space of community is a gift. To witness the grief others carry, with compassion, is a gift. It’s no longer “MY grief.” It’s just grief, and something each of us carries. We are not alone.
Space will be limited to 25 men.
Cost is a tiered scale. Based on your income, financial situation, and the value of the gathering, please choose the appropriate option for you.
Please note, this grief ritual is full.
We also have scholarship spots available, please email email@example.com if you are interested in one of those spots.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions,
With love and gratitude,
Carl and Alexandre
Alexandre Jodun is a holistic psychotherapist, transpersonal and plant-medicine integration guide, grief ritualist, poet, and devoted apprentice of life, soulfully in service to loving-awareness and the evolution of consciousness. Through A Healing Bridge, he meaningfully weaves together his eclectic therapeutic, creative, and ancestral roots to offer a sanctuary for individuals and small groups to meaningfully re-weave that which is Sacred back into their lives and relations. At the core of his vocational inquiry, Alexandre’s passion is to investigate (experientially) the intersections between healing developmental wounds and ancestral trauma, working respectfully with extraordinary states of consciousness and plant & ritual technologies, and the mythopoetic process of psycho-spiritual initiation into authentic adulthood for modern folx. He currently resides in the Sacred Valley of Cusco, Peru, living and working alongside his beloved wife, Alyona. You can find more about Alexandre here.
Carl Rabke is a somatic naturalist, embodiment mentor, and a tender of soul and living culture. He has facilitated men’s gatherings for the last 20 years and co-hosts the Embodiment Matters Podcast with his beloved wife, Erin. You can find out more about Carl and his work here.