“Most of us can’t choose how we’re going to die but we can choose our choices then within that we can prepare for them.” Louise J. Crooks
Loss is an integral part of the existence of humanity. By understanding and acknowledging this fact, we get to have a different perception and attitude to towards grieving. Victoria Lichtman and Louise J. Crooks believe that no one deserves to die alone. They have taken the path of supporting people facing death and loss with an aim of easing their experience. They do this by creating an environment that enables sharing of the experiences of death and bereavement.
When Victoria developed a ceremony for her beloved friend that was passing…gathering all who loved him to pave his path with love while he left this world, something magical happened. People gathered from around the world on an online platform. It was an amazing experience…humbling in its beauty and an honour to be present to. Her close friend, fellow healer and marketing guru, Louise, was deeply touched and together they decided they should do this for others.
Suddenly, all Victoria’s life’s work pulled together and End of Life Ceremonies was created. Victoria has always deeply understood there are only three things we can share with people in this world; their birth, their life and all that happens in it, and their death. To her, all are sacred. She has had the privilege and honour to be with people that are entering transition, both with those passing and with the loved ones left behind.
According to Victoria, these are the moments when the pretences of life are left behind and only truth is left…the desire for identifying and delving into our spiritual beliefs, facing our emotions, asking how to let go and experiencing the truth of love and true forgiveness…which is where true healing lies. Connecting with others on such a deep level brings Victoria great joy and fulfillment and the craving to do so has been a driving force in her lifelong work in her private practice, her public speaking and her dynamic workshops on emotional awareness, forgiveness, spirituality and healing.
Victoria teaches how to feel emotion and live life to its fullest no matter what events are happening in their lives. With the gift of being able to create a safe and sacred space, she helps others on their healing path emotionally, physically and spiritually. She has been a force in the human potential movement and healing arts for more than 40 years. She is a Senior Practitioner and Presenter for the global organization, The Journey, a transformational cellular level healing modality. She has an MPS in Counseling, 2ce certified in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), is an International certified Life Coach, a Conscious Leadership Coach and international speaker.
For Louise Crooks, after experiencing the transitioning ceremony Victoria held for their friend, she was deeply moved. So much so, the next day they decided wholeheartedly that they needed to do this for people in a bigger way – they knew it was so needed. That was the beginning of End of Life Ceremonies. Louise and Victoria met over a decade ago through an organization called The Journey. Having learnt ways to hold space for those in need, this felt like the perfect next step.
Louise had been thinking about death and what it meant, especially during the Covid pandemic. So many people were dying alone. This was one of her greatest fears – dying alone. Her concern previously had been that she had no children – so who was going to look after her, and be at her bedside when the time came. Seeing how people transitioning could be held with love through the ceremony Victoria performed for their friend, was the spark that lit this fire. And after being at the bedside of two family members – and seeing the life spark leave their body, Louise knew that that spark couldn’t just disappear, and has a long-held belief since then that our loved ones are still with us beyond death.
Holding the space for the passing not just while they are here but into the beyond is something she believes is important – our love ‘paves the path home’. Louise Crooks has been a holistic marketing and visibility coach for the healing and coaching community for the past 15 years. She’s been on a lifelong healing journey herself and knows the importance of healing work in the world – driving the passion she has for serving her clients through her foundational marketing work and in turn helping more people heal. Her extensive marketing experience in this community lends itself well to End of Life Ceremonies and she is not only a co-founder but the Marketing Director too.
Ultimately Louise is here in this life to serve, to heal, and to be here for those going through the struggles of life and help them grow and feel supported – even in death. Louise has an Arts Degree, is a fully qualified Life Coach (ICF recognized) and Business Coach, and has immersed herself in programs such as The Journey, The Enneagram, Access Consciousness and Human Design.
In this episode, our guests will talk about the birth of their business and the importance of being present in all the events that happen in our lives. They will also discuss on why seeking support is important when experiencing loss.
Facebook group: http://fb.me/groups/endoflifeconversations
Facebook page: http://fb.me/pavethepathhome
(Offering) Grief Meditation webpage: www.healingthroughlossmeditation.com
- I’ve been an entrepreneur for my whole working life and for years when someone passes on, I would take my crystal singing bowl and I would play it and sing their soul home. [3:09]
- I told what I did to a friend who was such a beautiful teacher and healer and he said he wanted this for himself. [3:36]
- At his passing time, people from around the world gathered and it was so engrossing where we gave him final wishes. [4:00]
- I’ve done this for years and years and I’ve studied death and dying my whole life and what happens to us when we die and our belief systems. [4:40]
- This was a turning point for me being able to start this and Louise called me the next day because she also loved Bodhi dearly. [
- She suggested the we bring this to the world together and that’s how this [5:27]
- I’ve always known that there’s only three times we can be present for another and I had been present in every one of them; birth, life and all that happens in it, and death. [5:45]
- It’s the moments we truly come together that we witness and connect and when we do the important transitions in our lives when present they all become sacred. [6:02]
- It’s such an honor for us to be able to hold the space for people going through this experience. [6:45]
- So many people reached out to us sharing how wowed over they were by the experience and how deeply they felt it. [6:58]
- Death happens, but in many cultures, this is avoided and it is rarely a shared experience and so we don’t really give death, the same recognition and importance as other life events. [7:18]
- Whether it’s us in the dying process or it is the people that we’re leaving behind, it’s all an emotional experience, and most of the time, we suppress and try to block it [7:57]
- This is an opportunity for us to really embrace the dying process and, and recognize the beauty in it. [8:11]
- We have made this so that it is available for adults and children. [10:38]
- It’s recognizing that live spark has to energetically go somewhere and from that point of view, we really do feel that we want to sing souls home, even beyond death. [11:55]
- We have three ceremonies that we do, and one of them is after they die to pave that path for them even beyond death. [12:10]
- Part of what we’re doing, not only with the ceremonies, but with the work that we do with individuals and in groups is to help them to let go and to have peace with the whole process. [13:02]
- We were about giving people choice in how they die, and giving their loved one’s choice in how they support their loved ones. [15:45]
- Most of us can’t choose how we’re going to die but we can choose our choices then within that we can prepare for them. [16:06]
- Commercial break. [17:11]
- We have the celebration of life ceremony, pave the path home ceremony and the end-of-life ceremony. [15:58]
- The celebration of life ceremony before you go is about being able to connect with all your loved ones and not leave without saying goodbye. [19:22]
- The pave the path home ceremony is done to support you through the experience of leaving this physical plane. [19:49]
- The end of life ceremony happens after you pass and is for your loved ones to offer comfort and give you wings of love and prayer as your soul transitions on to the next plane. [20:47]
- Our mission is we don’t want anybody to have to be alone but to leave knowing that there are loved ones paving the path. [22:57]
- I am not scared of death or what happens after death but I’m scared of dying alone which is so what happened with COVID. [23:42]
- This brought up some beautiful opportunities for some beautiful ways of thinking and created for us an opportunity to do a phenomenal grief meditation. [24:09]
- There are so many people that are scared of dying alone go and are asking if they can buy one of these ceremonies. [25:16]
- It is our mission that we grow this business and get this out there to the world and get more people involved. [25:44]
- The bereavement is part of the deeper work we do and it’s about helping people to move through that grief as well and heal. [26:53]
- There’s so much that can be supported through this experience and we do all of that through one on one work and through our bereavement groups. [29:01]
- One of the biggest things that we work with is emotion and to feel emotion in a healthy way. [30:51]
- Don’t let grief to ruin your life as it hinders you from living a full life. You are not dishonoring your loved one by allowing yourself to let go. [31:00]
- Vicki does a beautiful meditation helping people through that process in this grief meditation. [33:36]
- No matter what is happening, be totally present in the here and now and don’t miss one moment of what’s happening in your life. [35:52]
- Be honest about what’s really in your heart, and be who you are for you are so precious. [36:08]
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