Working with the Departed
Death, dying and psychopomp work
"Psychopomp" literally means "guide of souls" from the Greek word ψυχοπομπός (Wikipedia). Psychopomps traditionally have had a responsibility to escort deceased souls to the afterlife. Their role is not to judge the deceased, but simply provide safe passage.
In indigenous cultures, the shaman can fulfill the role of the psychopomp. This may include not only accompanying a soul to the Light, but also to help at birth, introducing the newborn's soul to the world. In this case, the shaman is a spiritual "doula" for the souls that are leaving and coming in.
Assistance with a Loved One's Passing
Spiritual assistance can be of great benefit during the time one is readying to pass, as fear and anxiety are transmuted into feelings of peace and surrender - readying the body and soul for a journey into a new dimension. As a Shamanic Practitioner, I observe the dying process as akin to the birth process and I personally consider what we call death merely as a transition - a time when the soul readies itself to perceive and receive esoteric experiences to grow. Care is taken to respect all personal wishes, cultures, diversity and religions at such a sacred time, with the awareness that each person's imprint on this Earth is unique and special.
Assistance with an Animal's Passing
In the shamanistic lens, everything has a Spirit. This includes trees, stones, rivers, oceans and aspects of the weather - as well as our four-legged and feathered friends. Just as with people, I am able to create a calm and peaceful atmosphere for your pet as s/he prepares to leave this world. Shamanic journeying, Animal Whispering and Sound Healing are also a part of this sacred Ceremony in order to provide a quiet path for your pet's body to rest, for the spirit to feel honored and to peacefully pass. This Ceremony is a wonderful way for grieving owners to be able to heal their own hearts during these times.