acupressure massage

Dying Awareness Week


Working with Death and Loss in Shiatsu Practice

This week, 13 – 19 May 2019, is Dying Awareness Week. Dying Matters and its coalition members host an Awareness Week every year. They state:

‘This gives an unparalleled opportunity to place the importance of talking about dying, death and bereavement firmly on the national agenda. This year’s theme is ‘Are We Ready?’

I am writing a book about Death and Loss in Shiatsu Practice, so am very much concerned with this topic at the moment. Consequently I see images of memorial and mourning all around me, and of course this is the truth. Usually in the background, where we cannot always see it because the sun shines up ahead, is the shadow. The Yin of life is always there and avoided at all costs. Yet, we know that Yin and Yang must be balanced.

Denying the existence of death means it will move forwards to make sure we don’t. Thus, we are each faced with grief and loss through our work if not in our personal life as well, and there are a host of organisations being set up to raise our awareness. From blogs by morticians (check out Order of the Good Dead), to Death Festivals (Death on the Fringe in Edinburgh), to the Academy of Medical Sciences’, The Departutre Lounge in a Lewisham (London) shopping centre, and Ricky Gervais’ new series ‘Afterlife’ on Netflix, we are having to face it.

Each day I will make a short post about a different aspect of death and loss from the perspective of the Shiatsu practitioner. Asking, are we ready? I hope they will also be of interest to Shiatsu students and teachers, and those who seek our care.

‘Cornflower’ is the name of this metal sculpture. It is a memorial which ‘commemorates all victims of the Soviet occupation and those who gave their lives for the freedom of Estonia.’ (from the plaque beside the artwork). Created by Paul Saar, 1990, Tartu, Estonia.

Shiatsu offers support for those facing death or grieving

Shiatsu approach to death

Shiatsu, the 5 Elements and grief

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