Thursday, July 6, 2017; 11:30am to 1:30pm

Guest Speaker: Tamara Webb, LPC, LMHC

As a critique to the widely held notion that people go through “five stages” of grief, psychotherapist and grief counselor Tamara Webb, LPC, LMHC, will present an interactive lecture on the “five bodies” model, a flexible, holistic framework for understanding individual ways of grieving and providing support through the process.

Working with the ancient Eastern philosophy of Vedanta, which gave rise to mindful spiritual practices including Hinduism and Buddhism, we will explore how the embodied Self, housed in five distinct but integrated bodies or “sheaths,” experiences the landscape of grief. These bodies — the physical body, the energetic body, the mental/emotional body, the body of wisdom and meaning, and the causal “body of bliss” — represent a sort of topographic “relief map” that allows grieving persons to locate themselves in this challenging terrain and points to meaningful ways helping professionals and grieving persons alike can address concerns arising in the journey.

This presentation includes an outline of the five bodies and their philosophical underpinnings, a description of how grief tends to play out on each body, and a discussion of common interventions to address the myriad conditions from which people often seek relief during the grieving process. Complementary and alternative approaches will be discussed as part of a presentation that will delve most deeply into concerns that arise within counseling settings. Attention will also be given to the manner in which traumatic bereavement appears within the five bodies context.

Attendees of this brief overview will be able to:

  • Evaluate the cultural misnomer that there are “five stages of grief”
  • Name and define the five bodies, or sheaths, that, from an Eastern philosophical perspective, comprise each human being
  • Understand and describe how various experiences of grief manifest in or affect each of these five bodies
  • Recognize potential signs of a traumatic bereavement process
  • Identify a holistic menu of interventions to assist with relief of grief concerns from a five bodies perspective