top of page

Grief Ceremony

Saturday January 16, 2021

6-9pm EST, 3-6pm PST

in the virtual temple

Facilitated by Julia Hartsell


Your grief is sacred.


Compassion to the sadness and anger moving through many on the personal and collective levels right now. Even before the pandemic, we had plenty to grieve: personal loss, trauma, earth devastation, systemic and political injustice, racism, sexism and ancestral burdens. One lifetime surely can't be enough to emotionally process our wounds and the backlog of inherited grief. This past year (and well, the past four years) has brought even more to the surface and taken plenty away. There's so much loss and heartbreak, rage and despair, fear and uncertainty--and few spaces for refuge or communal tending.


Grief is an expression of love.


Grieving helps clarify what we love. Our grief can be an ode to treasured relationships, lost beloveds, justice, equity, health of the earth.


Grief is medicine for the soul.


Our grief needs to be honored and expressed for our personal and collective healing. Grieving is an antidote to centuries of numbness and dissociation. Our emotions can serve as powerful messengers when welcomed, felt, tended. Diving into the depths gives us access to greater joy, understanding and resilience.


​Community grieving is ancient.


Grief is personal and transpersonal. Grief can be ancestral and collective. Even with physical distance, we can tend these bigger energies in community. We can weave our virtual cocoons to attend to our shared sorrow and have greater access to sacred support.


Some of our ancestors danced their grief.


Before their dances were suppressed, many of our ancestors moved their grief with the support of the elements and music. They knew the medicine of water, earth, fire and stone. They carried the power of the drums and of their own voices.


This Ceremony is for dancers who desire a ritualized communal container for grief expression. We're still in a pandemic, so we'll assemble online. After an opening invocation, there will be somatic guidance, sounding, cathartic waves of music, writing/creative prompts and guided elemental engagement to access these deep feelings for the sake of healing and resilience.


Just before the inauguration, let's dip into this well of shared grief accumulated over the past year and cleanse ourselves in the virtual river.

$20-55 Sliding Scale

*To provide pandemic flexibility, we invite you to pay what is accessible for you.

A few full scholarships can be provided if needed.

Register Here

Embrace your grief, for there your soul will grow

~ Carl Jung

Heartward Sanctuary co-founder, Julia Hartsell, began ritualizing dance for communal grief tending after a life-changing loss in 2013. Since then, she's explored various forms for tending and transmuting grief and rage. With decades of study of the body in movement and emotional processes, Julia has found dance to be the most potent way to process these more challenging emotions. Julia has been facilitating group dances for a decade and has adapted to facilitating online dances, ceremonies and sharing circles since the pandemic.  These ceremonies are intimate and include elemental ritual, ancestral reverence, cathartic waves of music, writing &/or art,  altar work and close with an optional share.

Read her full bio here

bottom of page