Mary Smail Psychotherapist SW2

Dying, Death and … “Peripherality”.

"Ordinary people seem not to realize that those who apply themselves in the right philosophy, are directly, and of their own accord, preparing themselves for dying and death.  If this is true, and they have actually been looking forward to death all their lives, it would of course be absurd to be troubled when the thing comes, for which they have so long been preparing and looking forward."  

James Hillman

"Grief is like open-heart surgery.  Nothing can rip us open, hurt us, scar us and heal us more than grief and nothing brings us more valuable soul lessons".

Terri Daniel with Danny Mandell

What if death is not what we think it is? 

What if the final part of our earth life brings us into new resources?

What if imagination can help us sense possibilities beyond what we know of the here and now?

What if phenomena that we half-see when someone special dies needs to have safe space to be understood?

There are no concrete answers to these edgy questions,  but terminal illness, loss of a loved one, our own aging process each force us to change. Change is often frightening especially when it involves our letting go of all we have come to know.  We have very few maps to help us move into a more experiential and  intuitive mode of thinking and drawing strength from there. 

In the same way that sex and sexuality was not discussed 50 years ago, so Death is avoided, kept safely in the professional hands of medicine, the funeral director, the clergy.   We only stumble into it when we are faced with our own mortality through a diagnosis or the loss of a loved one.     

Thanks to the hospice movement  and organisations such as Dying Matters  or  The Soul Midwifes, Terri Danie'sl Afterlife Conferences  our awareness is changing.  There is now a growing literature about dying, death, grief, which describes new ways to  research into what the soft sciences teach us about what lies beyond the here and now. This new information brings death and grief out of taboo and silence.  

I have worked through some responses to meeting diagnosis, making sense of losing a beloved,  and the identity change we personally experience at these times.  I am presently researching the phenomena of attending to what is available to us on the spiritual-imaginal plane when we have an attitude of expectation and listening through the heart or what is seen "at the sides", obliquely, with peripheral vision. 

Thoughts, images, curious events come to us which seem to link us to the love of someone we have lost. These are frequently written off as being wishful thinking or a defence against truly grieving. I take this material seriously, working with you  to draw out  confidence in becoming more familiar with and beyond the dying/loss process and the possible giftedness of this desperately searing process.   

There is no rule book for this material.  It does not come from a church/temple code, nor is it a spiritualistic practice.  

I offer a place where this material around the death, dying and what lies beyond may be neutraly welcomed and explored. 

You will never be completely at home again, because part of your heart always will be elsewhere. That is the price you pay for the richness of loving and knowing people in more than one place.”

Miriam Adeney

Understanding Death and Dying