Dying as a Rite of Passage: The Practice of Living and Dying

Vom 14. bis zum 19. August 2018 wird Meredith Little von der School of Lost Borders bei uns zu Gast sein und über das „Leben und Sterben als Übergangsritual“ unterrichten.
Wir sind sehr dankbar, dass wir dieses Seminar in unserer Wildnisschule ankündigen dürfen:

Learning how to die is learning how to live

For millennia indigenous people everywhere have known „how to die“.  Their teacher was the natural world and, over many years and many generations, they learned their lessons well.  Cycles of dying and rebirth were seen everywhere: the setting and rising of the sun, the turning of the seasons, the death of the elderly alongside the birth of a new generation.  Ceremonial rites of passage emerged pan-culturally as a means of supporting, guiding and witnessing this natural process. These rites supported individuals as they let go of one stage of life—the “little deaths”—and were “reborn” into the next.  And these rites supported people as they prepared for the final transition, the big Death that awaits us all.

As our modern culture has grown ever more sophisticated, we have also become ever more divorced from our natural surroundings and from ancient wisdom about living and dying.  We have pushed Death away from Life, the dying away from the living—all in order to impose the illusion of control on the uncertainty of change.  We have lost touch with the natural world and our place in it as mortal animals.  We have forgotten “how to die.”

In 2003, Meredith Little and hospice physician Scott Eberle joined together to create “The Practice of Living and Dying”—a new kind of curriculum that draws from both the hospice movement and the rites of passage movement.

In this particular program we will explore how to move through the dying process—be it a symbolic dying or a physical dying. 
Our aim is both educational and therapeutic.  Educationally, we will see how the growing wisdom of the modern hospice movement and the ancient, pan-cultural wisdom of indigenous ways and the 4 shields can be interwoven: how the wisdom of one world can inform daily practice in the other. Therapeutically, time spent alone in nature each afternoon will encourage you to experience the wisdom of your own nature, and your personal truth about living and dying.  In the late afternoon and evening we will sit in council to hear the stories of this solo time, and learn from each other.

We ask an inseparable pair of questions:  How do we live, so we may fully become our dying?  And how do we accept our dying, so we may fully embrace our living?



“The land around us (and within us) teaches with each passing season, and with each flood, drought, fire and storm, that out of change, crisis and a dying to what was, there appears a new story of form and adaptation. And that how we respond and integrate change into the fabric of our ongoing story colors the character of what comes next.” Meredith Little

Meredith and her husband Steven Foster co-founded Rites of Passage Inc. in 1976 and The School of Lost Borders in 1981, pioneering new methods and dynamics of modern pan-cultural passage rites in the wilderness, and creating innovative practices of  “field eco-therapy.”  The essence of their work is captured in articles, chapters, an award-winning documentary film, Lost Borders: Coming of Age in the Wilderness, and books that include: The Book of the Vision Quest, The Roaring of the Sacred River, The Four Shields: The Initiatory Seasons of Human Nature.  Since Steven’s death in 2003 Meredith continues both nationally and internationally to guide and train others. She has also co-founded along with Scott Eberle a new branch of Lost Borders entitled The Practice of Living and Dying, to help break the taboos and silence that pervade the subject of death and to help restore dying to its natural place in the cycles of life. Meredith is currently the director of The Practice of Living and Dying, Lost Borders International, and owner of Lost Borders Press.


In „Dying as a Rite of Passage – The Practice of Living and Dying“ werden u.a. folgende Inhalte thematisiert:

  • The 4 shields of human nature / Die 4 Schilde der menschlichen Natur
  • Moderne pankulturelle Übergangsrituale in der Wildnis
  • Medizinwanderungen in der Natur, die Natur als Spiegel
  • Threshold, Schwelle
  • Council und Spiegeln
  • Selfgenerated ceremony
  • Indigene Sicht- und Lebensweise


Termin: 14. –  19. August 2018

Dauer: 6 Tage, von Dienstagabend 18 Uhr bis Sonntagmittag 12 Uhr

Seminarleitung: Meredith Little

Seminarsprache: Achtung: Dieses Seminar findet auf Englisch statt. Englischkenntnisse sind notwendig für die Teilnahme.

Teilnehmerzahl: Wir haben entschieden, die Teilnehmerzahl auf maximal 20 Teilnehmer zu begrenzen. Wer gerne mit dabei sein möchte, dem können wir empfehlen, sich rechtzeitig anzumelden.

Ort: Taunus, nahe Wiesbaden/Bad Schwalbach

Kosten: 600 €, inkl. Unterkunft und Verpflegung. (100 € Anzahlung bei der Anmeldung.)

Genau wie bei unseren anderen Kurse, findet dieses Seminar draußen statt und übernachten die Teilnehmer im eigenen Zelt. 

Mehr praktische Info’s: Anreise, Kursablauf, Unterkunft, Essen,… 


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„No yearning for an afterlife, no looking beyond, no belittling of death, but only longing for what belongs to us and serving earth, lest we remain unused.“
Rainer Maria Rilke