When: Every 4th Sunday from 11:00am – 12:30pm
The NEC is welcoming community members to join our FREE monthly EcoGrief and EcoAnxiety Circle. This Circle welcomes any and all people looking for a space to express their stories, sadness, worries, anxiety, and fear concerning the state of our planet. We will address topics such as climate change, species extinction, catastrophic fire and other natural disasters, spiritual disconnection, and anything else that is brought to the Circle.
What is EcoGrief and EcoAnxiety?
More and more we are seeing the words “EcoGrief” and “EcoAnxiety”; these words give a name to the psychological responses we experience as we witness devastation to the environment and the resultant losses. In a time when we are first-hand experiencing the ramifications of violence to the Earth, injustices within our local and global communities, and isolation and anxiety during a global pandemic – now more than ever it is time to come together, in both mourning these losses and building our future.
“Having other people validate and echo the legitimate sadness and mourning we feel helps us to build emotional solidarity. Mourning in isolation can spiral into immobilizing despair, whereas shared grief builds communities of support that can help people move toward more energizing emotions of hope and anger. Hope can function as a bridge from mourning to action.” – Elin Kelsey, Hope Matters: Why Changing the Way We Think is Critical to Solving the Environmental Crisis
- Opening: Land acknowledgment, opening announcements, and group agreements
- Guided Exercise: Each week will be a different meditation, writing prompt, movement, breathing, etc.
- Sharing: One person shares at a time with no response or “cross-talk” from other participants. There will be an open time for connecting threads of sharing at the end.
- Closing: Grounding exercise and quote and/or resource provided by the facilitator.
- Questions: Facilitator remains for 5-10 minutes for questions and concerns.
Brittany Kleinschnitz is a Humboldt State Masters of Social Work student and currently works as the Office and Event Support staff at the NEC, in part as the voice behind our Mindful Monday posts. With a background in wildlife, natural resources, and ecology, Brittany hopes to weave environmental knowledge and a love for the living world with grief and trauma healing, alternative therapeutics, and community connection.
Apprenticeship with Sorrow
As Frances Weller writes in “The Wild Edge of Sorrow”, embarking on an “apprenticeship with sorrow” helps us to engage our grief as a way to come close to what we love, to honor and be witnessed in our pain, and to transform that pain into spiritual replenishment. It is here that we develop a better sense of self and our place in the world. It is here that we build and are seen by our community. We invite you to join us in this apprenticeship with sorrow.
“What if, however, the feelings we have when we pass through these zones of destruction are actually arising from the land itself? What if it is the grief of the forest registering in our bodies and psyches – the sorrow of the redwoods, voles, sorrel, fern, owls, and deer, all those who lost their homes and lives as a result of this plunder of living beings? What if we are not separate from the world at all? It is our spiritual responsibility to acknowledge these losses. What if this the anima mundi, the soul of the world, weeping through us?” – Frances Weller, The Wild Edge of Sorrow