Personal and / or Professional Spiritual Development

Transforming Spiritual Pain is one of the four units of The Sacred Art of Living and Dying. This world renowned programme has been running at Our Lady’s Hospice since 2008 and consists of four stand-alone units.

Each unit comprises of a two-day workshop followed by five small study group sessions, called Circles of Trust.  These two-hour monthly meetings are held in various locations and designed to maximize integration of learning into daily practice.  Programmes are a creative blend of instruction, hands-on experience, multimedia presentation, personal reflection and creative rituals from the world’s great wisdom traditions. The s interactive and inspirational learning experience promotes personal and professional growth.

The programme will enable participants to:

  • Explore the nature and inter-relationship of human health and suffering and the universal aspects of meaning, forgiveness, hope & relationship.
  • Live with enhanced purpose and meaning through all the stages and transitions of living and dying and accompany others to do so.
  • Connect or reconnect the ‘soul and role’ in their lives.

Transforming Spiritual Pain is the fourth of four study units providing the historical and theoretical foundation for the Anamċara. Each of the study units is grounded in the contemporary health care sciences and is inspired by the great spiritual traditions and collective wisdom learned from the dying.

The meaning of life and death, compassion and caring are explored in a nurturing environment. Based on lessons that the dying teach the living, this retreat format allows for ample reflection on the meaning of end-of-life ministry. Exercises include meditation, life-priorities evaluation and self-care skills for maintaining a centered, professional presence.

What you can expect from this program:

  • Study and personal experience with some of the different principles and techniques of ‘energy work’ by using bio-feedback mechanisms as a means of assisting a patient’s state of physical and emotional well-being.
  • Experimentation with guided visualization formats for the ‘healing of memories.’
  • Exploration of the ethical dimensions of end-of-life caregiving that impact the long-term emotional and spiritual lives of caregivers.
  • Examination of the distinction between caregiver burnout and fatigue as well as other practical antidotes to stress.
  • Exposure to basic theory and techniques related to Jungian dream analysis, particularly as it relates to emotional and spiritual pain at the end of life.
  • Discussion of basic rights and obligations regarding body ‘aftercare,’ burial, memorial services and grief support for extended family systems.
  • 5 sessions of two-hours each in a Circle of Trust, facilitated by a trained animator. These sessions are held where possible in locations suitable to participants.  Participants may have to travel to Dublin or other locations depending on availability of other participants and/or animators. On line meetings may be facilitated if necessary.

Core textbooks for the programme include:

  • A Hidden Wholeness by Parker Palmer
  • The American Book of Living and Dying by Richard Groves.

Readings In this 6-month unit are from:

  • Being with Dying, Cultivating Compassion & Fearlessness in the Face of Death by Joan Halifax
  • The Four Things That Matter most by Ira Byock.

Various Continuing Professional Development / Accreditation

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