on grief


Allow your grief Make space for it to flow, it is holy The over-culture would have you believe that your grief is an illness, to be medicated away if you have passed your allocated 2 weeks without pay

your heart does not believe in deadlines she is wise she does not allow the sacred process of grieving to begin if we do not make space for it for she knows once begun, it must not be silenced the very soul and life is at risk of going numb if this most sacred and sensitive place is rendered profane by a deadline or an outcome

do not go numb, grieve instead, and live it is time

You may have not time to rest your arms, to lie and weep out your grief remember you are strong enough to carry your sorrow to stolen moments of solitude you are doing sacred work and when it is done you will open your eyes again to joy

share your scrap of bread and cup of milk with sorrow and blessing will come

it is the way of things sorrow and joy are twin, they flow together

if your doctor says in ignorant kindness that more than 2 weeks to weep out deep sorrow is a little unreasonable, it is an illness

tell him from me, please that he is right: it is unreasonable grief is not about reason and as I am grief stricken I must also be stricken with the unreason of it for how can I make sense of this? I instead honour my senses, I will be sensible it is all that can be done

there is no cure for grief other than to sorrow she unfolds slowly she unfolds us slowly she is a hard teacher, for there is little sweetness in her teaching it is an initiation

 Be guided by wise ones who know the rhythm and rites of sorrow & grief the poets, the Saints, your godmother

May you be guided by the grace of an open sky and a fresh cold wind that forces the eyes to tear when the throat fills with the sand of things we wished we’d said,

say to the hollow wind in your suffering what you wanted to say the wind carries the sound to all the souls that ever were

you are heard in your sorrow and rage and anguish

Grief will not eat you and sorrow will not drown you she comes to heal you to lift up from your heart your burden and push out the glass you carry there her salt heals trust it, though it stings

she comes so that you can fill up with joy you must empty out first  that which has become brackish to fill again with sweet water

salt first, then sweet

you cannot think it away your mysterious grieving will not melt with analysis it is not your mother or missing father or a lover who put dust in your eyes and made them smart it is not you, either, my dear heart

it is the way of things

Sorrow has made you who you are, now has tempered the fire and tested the strength of your bones you are becoming wise this is not an easy thing

and yet, here you are bravely standing, still remembering the sorrows in a world that asks you to forget your feeling, your soul, your humanity and go and buy something

you stand, still human, still alive this is a victory

now, look at your own hands, I will tell you a secret this is not the first time those hands have lived on this earth you will go on long after this time

but for now your work is sorrowing, and I in my sorrows, remember your heart, remember mine too go on in courage to your sorrow, salt water heals all wounds you are healing first salt, then sweet


I hope that those touched by grief – especially the nameless grief of senseless death – may find a space, a circle made with these words. I write these words as someone who has experienced immense grief and heartbreak in my life. Please understand these are not words of “inspiration” but what I have myself learned on my journey. Not just words from the heart but from feet blistered from wandering, aching back, silenced tongue. I pray for you and send you love and encouragement. Your heart will be eased. 

If you are in need of wise counsel, someone to bear witness and guide you through the rite of grief, please reach out to a trusted elder, skilled healer or person specially dedicated  to a life of faith and love. If the person you first speak to is not wise and rebuffs your sorrow, please persist there are many who have walked this path. You are not alone.  

#sacredheartofmary #depression #mentalhealth #trauma #sorrow #joy #spiritualhealth #grieving #healing

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