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Kate Curtis – ‘Keeper of Birth and Death’

Midwife and Acupuncturist, Shamanic healer and Certified Holotropic Breathwork Facilitator.

Discussion on how to Release the Fear of Birth and Death and of Living and Dying during Holotropic Breathwork, and with the assistance of acupuncture.

How to live without fear and how to die well? This becomes the question for many of us as we continue along our paths through life.

There is an innate fear of death amongst many of us and as we get older it tends to become stronger. Life is precious. The need to preserve ourselves becomes deeper. The protective shield which forms can be named as the protective Ego. It becomes thicker and more well disguised with age, and as we try to control our lives, and keep ourselves safe for fear of dying, and of not being safe in the world, or fear of being hurt again ; fear of loosing the attachements we have become so attached to. The deeper the hurts and wounds are, which are kept well sealed and subsequently still unhealed, the bigger the egoic protection.

Many people continue to have an innate fear of dying without actually knowing it in their conscious mind. They may have had near death experiences, or witnessed others. With the horrors of war scenes and civilians dying before our eyes, now portrayed on the news and internet, and in our cities, and towns, there is no escaping the fact that this is inevitable. Also, that within all of us we have quite possibly suffered painful and traumatic deaths in past incarnations.

Yet to live with freedom free from pain and suffering is also an innate yearning. How to do this is to seek out and face our fears. Look deep within, and heal our childhood, or past wounds. Once healing begins, at this core level, we can begin to trust to open our hearts more and more and with deeper trust then to breath deeply, the Breath of Life.

In my acupuncture clinic, many people present, with anxiety and stress, depression, pain, panic attacks, childbirth issues, fears of becoming a parent, infertility issues, fear of giving birth, not to mention fear of dying itself.

People who come for Holotropic breathwork experientential workshops, come with a wish to clear feelings of being stuck in their lives, blocked energies, anxiousness, stress, depression, addictions , low energy, and inability to move forward and to reach their full potential. Inability to form or sustain relationships.

I see many women who are pregnant who are looking for guidance, and assistance through their pregnancy, preparing for childbirth.

Often times what arises, is their absolute fear or terror of giving birth.

Some women discover through deep inner work or past life regression therapy, or during an acupuncture treatment, that they died in previous lifetimes in childbirth. It was in the past, much more prevalent than nowadays, that a mother died in the process , usually from haemorrhage. It was also more prevalent that a baby died during the birthing process.

During the process of giving birth, it can appear to the witness, to be a similar process to the process of dying . During a breathwork session whereby the individual themselves can get the sense of a birthing process , it can also be similer and quite often difficult for them to differentiate.

For the baby it is likewise a fearful event. Not only is it a journey which can be compared to a hero’s journey, but also the baby being completely symbiotically connected (via the blood and circulatory system, and the emotional system,) to their mother, will get to experience first hand what is going with mother. As her terror and fear and panic rises it is without doubt that the baby also feels this. Or feels the aloneness, for the first time as mother is so distracted in her need to keep herself focused and in her need to surrender to this magnificent life giving action.

During the stage of being pushed out through the opening to the ‘otherworld’, as when the baby’s head is delivered, this is likened to the stage of total release when the last breath is taken, by the dying person. As the umbilical cord is being compressed there are several moments before the first breath is taken by the baby. This is a life and death moment. It is ultimate surrender. It has to be done. Just as we know that in reality we have to die.

A midwife is someone who can also be named , ‘ Keeper of Birth’. Someone who stays close , soothing and keeping watch over the woman and also the baby through the birthing process.

The person who stays close and watches over a person in their dying process, holding a deep space, which soothes and comforts, the dying person. They can be likened to a midwife and may be named, ‘Keeper of Death.’ Both guiding through a gateway or a portal.

It is everyone’s primal fear at some stage in their lives, to die alone, or to die in pain. Fear of what is on the other side, and who will be there to greet. Fear of the unknown.

If there is time, during the death process, it can be likened to the preparatory time of pregnancy.Preparing, processing, healing old wounds, saying all that needs to be said before paving a pathway onwards and upwards, towards a new life.

In ancient times Body Mind and Spirit were considered innately connected. Now with modern medicine being so specific and segregated we have become sectioned off into compartments. Attending different specialists, for specific ailments. Yet our innate wisdom tells us that the pain and disharmony which may arise in our body is our way of drawing attention to the deeper more concealed needs of our soul.

The use of acupuncture enhances our awareness, releases energetic blocks and also releases from the persons inner reserve, great strength and power during any process where there needs to be an abundance of energy. It is used with great effect during labour. The birthing process requires a huge amount of energy and perserverence both with mother and baby.

Some people who have been trying to create a new pathway in life find it to be such a difficult journey. This may be due to their lacking the fuel and courage to complete. This is how it may have been for their mothers also.

Acupuncture used before the Breathwork session starts , provides the individual with that fuel. It can manifest with a huge surge of anger energy. It is the most empowering experience for an individual who is used to giving up at a certain point and feels a pattern in not completing life’s challenges, to finally push through. They are thereby enabling a new coding to be put in place. A new paradime. No more frustration and no more fear.

grofI feel it is with a deep sense of honour, that I was trained by one of the most progressive psychiatrists, of our time. Dr. Stanislav Grof and recently worked along side him in Houston. He pioneered the system of breathwork, which he named as Holotropic Breathwork over 50 years ago.

Having worked for years alongside his wife Christina, and studying different ancient practices of yoga, and different styles of meditation using breath, he was able to devise an amazingly safe holding space for those who are brave enough to learn how to live and die well. How to clear any memory of their birth which was traumatic. Practicing a practice of release, using breath and sound, and discovering a smooth passage way through one chamber to the next. Through one dimension to the next. So to release this innate fear which lies within all of us. He has created a map which once learned can help to open up the pathways to an easier experience. With practice we can achieve a gentle way to die, and a gentle way to let go the Egoic protection. To give birth to a new way of operating in the world. Filled with love and joy and expansiveness.

The Buddists   Taoists, the Yogis, and many of the indigenous peoples across the globe, knew how important it is at an early age to make friends with their terror, their inner demons. How to release and let go control, using breathing styles, fasting, trance dancing, medicinal medicines, and any tool which can create a channel between the conscious mind to the subconscious mind. Giving birth and simultaneously dying to the Ego. Becoming fully and completely in communication with the Soul. To be at peace and to live without fear is to fully embrace Life.

For more information about Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Ireland with Kate check and facebook

Acupuncture Phone 0872325383.



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