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" I want more of this experience of community showing up so fully and beautifully.

This is some of what will change the world." 

Peia Bird


The Sacred Work of Grief


DATE: Sun, July 22, 2018 | 10AM - 6PM

LOCATION: Living Earth Farm, Eugene, OR


There are many gateways to grief, whether personally through lost dreams, relationship conflicts, illness, stress, or the death of loved ones, or collectively through our shared sense of fear, outrage, despair, numbness or overwhelm from the social injustice and division, and environmental devastation in our world. Throughout history traditional cultures have come together to create and share communal rituals of mourning, remembrance, and praise of life. By honoring our personal and collective sorrows we strengthen our hearts, minds and spirits, and increase our capacity to respond to life's challenges with compassion, courage and wisdom.

This daylong event was inspired by the village grief rituals of the Dagara tribe of West Africa, brought to the West by traditional Dagara healer Sobonfu Somé, and draws richly from the work and teachings of ritualists and soul activists Francis Weller, Michael Meade, Martin Prechtel and Joanna Macy. Through cross-cultural ritual, ceremony, rhythm, poetry, song and alchemical empathy we will come together as a sudden village to share, metabolize and transmute some of what we are carrying. By connecting with, transforming and releasing our grief in community we build new resilience, strength and vitality to guide and support us through these turbulent times.


Lara Lwin Treadaway weaves group ritual, earth-based ceremony, poetry, music, song, storytelling, and ways of council to guide and support healing and transformation in community. She believes that sacred grief work, ancestral healing, earth reconnection, and the creative arts are pathways to restoring deep belonging within ourselves, between each other, and with the other-than-human world. Lara's personal story includes many rough initiations through grief, loss, and trauma, leading to a hard-won respect for the alchemical journey of transmuting pain into medicine for the world.


Andrea DiPalma Yansane is co-founder of West African Cultural Arts Institute and has been committed to the development of the West African drum and dance community in Eugene since 1995. Andrea has studied dance and drumming in the West African style with a myriad of the best teachers in the world and actively keeps herself current through her studies with master source artists from West Africa. For more information about Andrea and her work please visit her website at:


This event is being held at Living Earth Farm in Eugene. OR. Inspired by the book The Omnivore's Dilemma, at Living Earth Farm they aim to grow food in a truly sustainable way while also increasing their community's food security, using no chemicals, little fuel, and solar energy. Their goals include raising happy animals, connecting people to their food, restoring native plants and wildlife habitat, and educating others, all while working together as a family and having fun in the process. For more information about Living Earth Farm please visit their website at


This event is being offered by donation in the spirit of the gift economy, where each person is invited to offer their support through a combination of their ability to give and natural impulse to contribute. It is our hope that through the gifting paradigm everyone who wants to participate will be able to, and that we will also receive the support we need to continue offering our work in this way. We are suggesting a donation of $50-$100. No-one will be turned away for lack of funds.



from participants of previous Drinking from the Well Grief Rituals

This is such important work, no matter where your grief is stemming from. It was very transformational for me and I highly

recommend it. Drawing on the wisdom of so many amazing teachers, Lara presents it masterfully.

~ Brenda Johnson, Ashland, OR

The work you are doing is critical for assisting folks like me that need this energetic movement and soul retrieval plus radical

support for it. I know I did some major work and felt honored to be present for my fellow villagers. I know that

my ability to open to my grief was because of the beautiful and authentic tribe I had surrounding me.

~ Elizabeth Izzo, Portland, OR


It was just what I needed. I went specifically to grieve about the Earth and all we are losing. Those of us who love the earth

and are awake to what is happening are carrying so much grief. Taking the time to feel and express grief for

disappearing species, desecrated places, and our difficult future does not mean we are giving up,

but rather it can re-energize us to continue our activism.

~ Sharon Blick, Eugene, OR

Here's a wonderful opportunity to reclaim energy you may be unknowingly wasting just trying to hold back despair.

My close friend, Lara, is a gifted facilitator bringing many years of study and practice to create the

safe space needed to grieve through despair into the power of community. 

~ Leonard Higgins, Eugene, OR

I cannot suggest enough how much this event changed me. For anyone feeling the loss of another or loss of a dream.

This event helped me, in my darkest time, to begin my healing process. Sign up, you will not be disappointed.

~ Scott Roberts, Ashland, OR

Thank you for facilitating this amazing day on Saturday! I do feel changed, and I certainly can say this experience

feels like one of those "watershed" experiences.

~ Lisa Mayfield, Portland, OR

You must experience this ceremony to whatever capacity you can. It is simple. It is powerful. And it is moving.

~ Blake S, Corvallis, OR

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