Living and Dying Consciously

November 30, 2020 Debra Jones RM with Alison Normore Episode 1
Living and Dying Consciously
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Show Notes Transcript

Would you live life differently if you didn't fear death? None of us know when it will be our time, and carry the burden of the fear of dying without realizing that there is a way to lift that burden and free yourself to live life more fully today. Get ready to be empowered.

Debra Jones RM with Alison Normore PhD

Connect with Debra: www.debrajones.ca
Connect with Alison: www.alisonnormore.com

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Debra Jones  0:00  
Would you live life differently if you didn't fear death?

Debra Jones  0:05  
None of us know when it'll be our time and carry the burden of the fear of dying. Without realizing that there's a way to lift that burden and free yourself to live life more fully today, get ready to be empowered.

Debra Jones  0:45  
Our guest today has more than 40 years of experience in the human services field, with a PhD in family relations and human development, and extensive shamanic training. She's a fierce advocate for peace and freedom for all beings, passionate about teaching us to recognize our place in the world. Please welcome my teacher and mentor. Alison Normore. Hi, Alison, thanks so much for speaking with us today.

Alison Normore  1:16  
Thank you. Thank you, Debra, it's a pleasure to be here.

Debra  1:21  
Today, we're talking about a subject that most people are uncomfortable thinking about. But keep listening because we hope to dispel the fear and bring peace and empowerment to you instead. And if you haven't heard about dying consciously, you're in for a treat.

Debra  1:40  
Alison, most people I know, think about death as a morbid subject. They fear it and they focus instead on avoiding death at all costs. And thankfully, my training video has taught me that we're doing a disservice to ourselves by taking this approach. What can you share about that?

Alison  2:00  
Yeah, well, you, are so right. I mean, our culture today has a great fear and is in denial about the end of life. And, you know, we have a medical system, and the technology and the knowledge now to be able to extend life, you know, way beyond what we used to be able to do. So we've got this medicalization, if that's a word

Unknown Speaker  2:30  
of death. And the institutionalizing of it. If you think back, it's not that long ago, that when people died, we cared for them at home, got the body ready. And it was very much a family and a community process, end of life. Whereas now we put we shuffle our, our elders, you know, off into, into homes.

Unknown Speaker  2:55  
And, you know, we just have disconnected, we've become very disconnected from our elders, and those who are dying. And we've given over care into these institutions. And so all of that feeds into the, you know, the discomfort, I mean it's a reflection of the discomfort that that we feel. And yet, it's such a precious time. And people who work in hospice and work with those who are dying, I mean, without, without exception, will talk about how precious and how

Unknown Speaker  3:39  
spiritual and how fulfilling and satisfying that work is. So, you know, there's, there's a, there's a lot to remember and to reclaim. And

Unknown Speaker  3:54  
my experience has been through having a chronic health condition since I was a child and through my own shamanic training and spiritual awakening, of realizing that there we're more than a physical body. I mean, I know that now through those experiences, you know, near death for myself. And there are many, many people. I mean, Raymond Moody, many years ago, you know, brought this to the public attention with his case studies on near death experiences. And you don't have to go very far to find these stories. Many, you know, people, credible people have written their own accounts now and are teaching us, reminding us that there is more to life than, you know, after death. Life does continue. So that yes, there's, you know, we're in denial and we're pushing that away and trying to disconnect from the fact that we're each going to die. Life and death are just two sides of the same coin.

Unknown Speaker  5:00  

Unknown Speaker  5:01  
that we do, I think there's a whole lot, we're, we're denying ourselves.

Unknown Speaker  5:09  
Yeah. It's something that we don't want to talk about. And likely because we haven't had that support of the community like we used to when it was, it was out in the open, and it was just something else to deal with, and putting the onus on the medical system,  and giving them the power to say what happens in situations

Unknown Speaker  5:39  
of the end of life. It just kind of robs us, doesn't it of our own power?

Unknown Speaker  5:47  
Yes, I think it does. And again, I mean, it isn't simple. It's a confluence of a lot of different factors, you know, how we've ended up here. But once we've realize that we've given away our power, then we can take the steps, you know, to claim it back. To claim it back. I don't, I think again, it's just part of our process and our learning. And, and the way that our science and technology has brought us to these thresholds now of, you know, deciding making different choices about how we approach death, and our own death course. But also, you know, the death of our loved ones. Mm hmm. And so for those of us listening, that, where we're fine, we're perfectly healthy.

Unknown Speaker  6:42  
Is this something that is to be thought about at this time of our life? Or are we, you know, it seems like we wait until we're given a diagnosis, before we actually start doing anything about it? What's the benefit of thinking about it now?

Unknown Speaker  7:06  
Oh, I think there's so much again, you know, I was one of those who was naturally drawn, to explore the spiritual realms, and to discover for myself, the reality of, or that something that survives death.

Unknown Speaker  7:30  
And I think, you know, there are many, as you say, who are forced into that kind of realization, or having to deal with the reality that, you know, where our physical beings are mortal, you know, they don't last forever. And on the other hand, you know, if we don't get those Wake Up Calls, then we can spend our lives

Unknown Speaker  8:01  
running from death, you know, trying to avoid dealing with it. And that can show up in many ways, it can show up as, you know, the ways we distract ourselves, you know, from slowing down and thinking about those more spiritual and meaningful topics like death.

Unknown Speaker  8:23  
And it can also show up in more harmful ways as addictions. And,

Unknown Speaker  8:33  
you know, and fear, right, you think about the effect that fear has our bodies and our minds and our emotions, I mean, the energy that that takes, so anything that we're doing to avoid dealing with the fact that we will die, is taking our precious life energy, you know, it's it's using it up.

Unknown Speaker  8:56  
And so dealing with and facing the fact that we will die, even if it's, you know, we don't plan to and we don't want to die, we're not ready to die yet for a long time. But acknowledging that that is a fact of life, that we will come to the end, at some point, and to prepare for that actually can free up so much energy, that otherwise we're spending on other things that you know, are not as meaningful. So becoming

Unknown Speaker  9:32  
and preparing for your own death is one of the greatest gifts that you can give yourself and it's, as you say, and people think, oh, that's morbid. But actually, you know, it's it's actually a very good use of energy and time, right to deal with what is it? You know, it's a fact we can deny it all we like. But as far as I know, nobody's avoided death yet. No matter how spiritually evolved

Unknown Speaker  10:00  
They were right. Yeah. So so you talk about preparing how how would we prepare?

Unknown Speaker  10:08  
Oh, well, the,

Unknown Speaker  10:12  
ancient ancestors and the Ancient Ones, you know, you think of the highly evolved spiritual traditions, the Tibetans and the ancient Egyptians who wrote the book of living and dying, I mean, they have very good descriptions and, and maps of the other realms, you know, and how to navigate them. And preparing for it, you know, can be as simply as simple first as acknowledging, you know, that you are going to die. And many people, I'm sure you know some to, have made preparations like, you know, the concrete physical things that you can do, have your will prepared, have a living will, for what happens if, you know, you have been hospitalized, put in the hospital, and, you know, you can speak for yourself, like making sure there's someone who can advocate for you. Planning your own funeral, you know, buying, you know, deciding talking with family and friends about, you know, what you would like to have happen. And I have a friend, who was actually a

Unknown Speaker  11:25  
student of mine. And she,

Unknown Speaker  11:30  
has been taking a lot of courses with me and things. And then she unexpectedly, one day, got a

Unknown Speaker  11:40  
diagnosis of terminal cancer, and was told she didn't have a whole lot of time left. Well, one of the first things she did, after she called her daughter was to call me and say, I need to come talk to you. And she was aware that I was trained in the dying work, and dying consciously. And she said, and she asked me to take her and her daughter through that whole training. And we did that, I mean, as she was, you know, progressively getting weaker and weaker. And she was, she would be propped up on cushions when I arrive at her house, for, you know, for our next our next class. And she just went right through all of them. And through all that process, she, you know, began to give her daughter instructions, very specific instructions about how she wanted her, her death to be handled, and she planned the most magnificent and beautiful service and, you know, events at her home and she was laid, people came to her home with all kinds of beautiful and very detailed. And so, you know, that kind of thing really helps us prepare, but perhaps the most important preparation that we can make

Unknown Speaker  13:09  
is the taking care of the emotional, the psychological, kind of an energetic healing that is needed. So one thing we know that the teachers, the ancient teachers have told us, is, you know, we want to leave this life as light as possible. You know, it's it's a lot to carry things across the realm and can stop us from being able to pass peacefully, we want to pass peacefully and light, you know, not carrying burdens and unresolved business from this life. So, the work then becomes reviewing your life looking back over and seeing the places in your life where you may not have come to closure with, with events with people in your life, and to begin the work of tying up those loose ends. And the saying goodbye to people, thank you to people saying, you know, the I love yous or I forgive you. And of course forgiving ourselves saying that to ourselves as well. You know, looking at the regrets, you know, is there anything there that needs, needs attention, and needs some more reflection. And so if you have somebody, a loved one who's passing, you know, helping them go through their life, and sort through and tie up all the loose ends and do that emotional work actually clear, so much heavy energy, you know, that's the burdens right? That we are all carrying around to some extent or another

Unknown Speaker  15:01  
And that can actually prevent you from leaving as peacefully, right? We all know those stories, and those situations of the lingering death, or of the, of the person who, you know, hung on and hung on hung on sometimes for days, weeks, months, until a certain person showed up at their bedside. And then that happened to my grandmother, right with my uncle, as she was lingering, and then, you know, my uncle came, and he was one who she, you know, had some unresolved business where they'd had words, and she needed to feel at peace. And the next morning, she passed after his visit. And we all know those stories, right? So being able to leave so and we don't know when our death is going to be we don't know, it's going to be tomorrow, right? As we cross the street or something. Who knows? I mean, we all know stories of people. It's like, oh, my goodness, like he was so young. Or she was, you know, she seemed like everything else seemed so healthy and well, like, how could that have happened. So because death can come in the night, right and steal us away, when we're not ready, then it pays, there's there's a great benefit to living their lives, this is where the conscious part comes in, as conscious as possible, about the unresolved business that we have with people, you know, and places and situations throughout our lives. That's the best, right, we can leave freer and with more peace in our heart, makes it much easier. Yeah, for sure. You know, it takes a lot of courage. If you've spent your entire life or even, you know, a short while with things that you might regret. It takes a lot of courage to actually face them, do we have to do this ourselves?

Unknown Speaker  17:03  
Well, ultimately, we come into this world alone, and we will leave alone. Right? So yes, the the ultimate responsibility for doing, you know, our work is our own, and not anyone else's. But there's always support, there's always support. And there are, you know, our friends, our loved ones.

Unknown Speaker  17:28  
And, you know, lots of other people, helpers, healers, counselors, right, who can help us address those issues, if we, you know, we need the support. But I think first of all, it's, you know, deciding, right, making the decision that you'd like to live more consciously, and to become more present to what's true for you, and real in your life. And what's most meaningful, because ultimately, death is, is the ultimate loss. Right? I mean, we've all had experiences of loss, you know, we've lost loved ones, we've lost pets. You know, we've maybe lost jobs, we know, we've lost relationships, friendships, you know, things. And so, but death is the final, it's the ultimate loss of everything. Right. So yeah, it's a big thing, and it's gonna come to all of us, but the, you know, the Wisdom is that the best gift that you can give yourself is a good death.

Unknown Speaker  18:38  
Hmm. Never heard of that saying before. So when we die, and the lights go out, is that it?

Unknown Speaker  18:49  
Well, I don't think it is. And, you know, the ancient teachers say that's not it. You know, we are, as I mentioned at the beginning, you know, there's much evidence now more and more mounting evidence, you know, that can be documented as you know, science and that, that there is, of course, there is more after death, that ultimately, we are spiritual beings, having a human experience.

Unknown Speaker  19:23  
And so the evidence that comes from, you know, the thousands and thousands of near death experiences where people, you know, come to the end, their heart stops and all, you know, function, it's like lights are out.

Unknown Speaker  19:39  
And then they have this experience, right, of this moving into and the evidence and the stories show that there are more commonalities than there are differences in people's experiences across culture, across time, across history, that

Unknown Speaker  20:00  
point the way to there is something more after death. And, and that it's quite beautiful, you know, it's quite beautiful. So this is another

Unknown Speaker  20:12  
benefit of doing the work of beginning to think about and to contemplate, you know,

Unknown Speaker  20:20  
you're death, and because you're curious and you want to explore, there's so much out there, right to affirm that there is just beauty, you know, that we are actually infinite beings, that we are a great, you know, fields of light of consciousness and that consciousness survives death and just moves on, it's just a portal, right, we come into this world into physical form. And this is just another doorway at the end of that life, back to spirit. So, yeah, I mean, my own experience has been, you know, I've had diabetes since I was nine. And I've had multiple, what I would call near death experiences where

Unknown Speaker  21:08  
low blood sugar and I went into some coma. And I've known that there are, there's something else happening like I've had, I call intervention or angelic help, right of beings that have called me back and I've had, you know, sleep time, I'm a dreamer. And had many experiences in the dream time of traveling out of body into other realms and dimensions. And so that taught me without a shadow of a doubt for myself that

Unknown Speaker  21:46  
there is something more, that I am more than a physical body, and that other part of me that's invisible, but knowing and conscious, you know, can travel, travels out of this body, we all do that at night, when we sleep, right, we leave, there's always a connection, a silver cord, that connects us to our physical body. And that cord is only broken at death.

Unknown Speaker  22:15  
So that part of us continues to have experiences and to, you know, make a bet on that other side, and continues to make decisions about where we want to go next, what we want to do, you know, we are stubborn, free, limitless beings. And we choose to come into physical form, and lots of evidence or anyone who's ready to explore those realms, and that and that reality, that truth for themselves. Yeah, my work that I've done with you from your teachings, has really taught me that death isn't anything to be feared, it's really, I really feel that

Unknown Speaker  22:59  
I'm actually a little bit excited and curious about where I will go to when the time comes. And so it was very freeing to have that change of thought, and to free myself from the fear of it and just take each day and live each day as well as I possibly can. So that my quality of life, rather than being eaten up with the fear, is really enriched and and I'm empowered with the idea that it's, it's up to me, what I do with my life, it's my choice, what I do in my life, and it's also in from some aspect, my choice when I go, what do you think about that? Yeah, well, that is the ancient teaching, that when you do your spiritual work and awaken spiritually, to the fact that you are more than a physical body, and that you just go back to that spiritual realm at the end of this life, that, yeah, that just frees you up to be here. And, and to make the most and the best of this precious opportunity we have. I believe we choose to keep coming back because this is like, such a realm of possibility and, and beauty and potential. Like, we just can't wait to get back here. Right. It's like, Okay, how soon can I turn this around? process that life? There's a

Unknown Speaker  24:43  
book that I read a channeling from Emanuel that describe

Unknown Speaker  24:50  
you know, at the end of life, you know, what happens, this teacher and asks at the end of life, and and, you know, it's the

Unknown Speaker  25:00  
The people that meet you on the other side, because you will have agreements with those, you know, either ancestors or beloved soul mates, who have agreed and will meet you, and greet you, and welcome you back, you know, once you get to the other side, and they'll say so, what was that, you know, life like, what was that experience like, and your soul will just say, Wow, it was just like a dream, it passed in a flash, and here I am back at the end, you know, because it's into that realm of timelessness, of infinity, right that we move, our spirit moves, and, and that this life just seems like a brief dream. And so hence comes that, that teaching, that really, this physical realm is more of an illusion, like that the real, the reality is the spiritual realm, because it's timeless and infinite. And in that realm, we experience ourselves as a soul on a journey, on a beautiful journey and having adventures, right, just like you said, and so when we can have that awareness, and bring even that possibility, into our human minds, into this reality, you know, it does it just, it changes everything, it can free us up and keep us from responding to, you know, the fear that gets activated. The fear of, you know, what will people think? Or, you know, can I really do that maybe I can't, you know, questioning our own abilities and, and believing in our limitations, as opposed to just, you know, letting all that go and just saying, Okay, if I could do anything, what would it be, you know, what would bring me the most joy? What would bring me the most satisfaction and fulfillment? Imagine. I think that that's this spiritual awakening, and the potential and the opportunity that we're living in right now, is of that kind of awakening, to a higher purpose. And to a much wider, expansive view of who we are and what we're doing here. That's so inspirational. And that's exactly what I wanted to convey in our conversation. Because it is, it is actually such a beautiful experience of life. And death is just as beautiful. And so I really think that if we get over that idea of avoiding the conversation, and actually just get into some of the work, as you said, of preparing, it really is liberating. And, you know, as you mentioned, if we feel that we can manage some of these things ourselves, there are people like you and people like me that can help you get to some kind of realization or understanding of what's going on for yourself, in your mind and in your heart. And, you know, if anybody needs to reach out, they can reach you at your website can't they, at www.alisonnormore.com. Yes, for sure. Yeah, and I also have a Facebook page, people can message me from there - Alison Normore PhD on Facebook, or through Instagram, I'm on LinkedIn, I'm easy to find just put my name in. Beautiful. Alison, I am so grateful for your wisdom, and I'm so glad that we had this conversation. Thanks so much for sharing.

Unknown Speaker  28:51  
You're so welcome. It's always a pleasure for me to share these ideas and to, you know, plant these seeds. Right? And whereas, you know, sometimes we aren't ready. I know, I was there. But I spent many years you know, in academia, and it was the persistent calling of my soul that eventually, you know, woke me up into my dream time, and my experiences there, that there was something bigger going on something greater, which brought me to shamanism, and, you know, the study of indigenous wisdom traditions, and the ancient teachings. So, you know, it can come in any way. And I think that

Unknown Speaker  29:41  
you know, right now, this time, on the earth, you know, 2020, which is a year, none of us will forget,

Unknown Speaker  29:50  
is also an opportunity and a wake up call.

Unknown Speaker  29:54  
to notice how we're responding, how much fear there is afoot.

Unknown Speaker  29:59  
And the power of this situation that we have on the Earth right now is

Unknown Speaker  30:08  
that wake up call, you know, it certainly is triggering, even if we never thought of death that much.

Unknown Speaker  30:17  
And didn't think, you know, it was something we needed to, as you said at the beginning because yeah, I'm pretty healthy I've got many years left yet I don't even have to worry about it. That this year has woken us up to that fact, right? If there's a purpose, and there's always a purpose in everything that happens, and a gift, and the gift of this is waking up to how does death live within each of us? How does death live within you? How does death live within me? And because if we're not comfortable with death, and if we have been in denial and avoiding dealing with our own death, then we are being triggered massively right now. Triggered massively. So this is an opportunity, right? And again, it's another opening to say, Well, you know, what's really going on, and what's here for me to look at so that I can live more fully rather than being gripped by fear. And, you know, being, you know, shutting myself away from, you know, everything that matters and from the external world, and staying in my home hiding, you know, what is it I'm hiding from, you know, what is coming to find me. My teacher, Alberto says, you know, we're always, we're being stalked by death. And, and so, you know, rather than living in fear, how can I avoid, you know, where do I run and hide?

Unknown Speaker  31:50  
How can I turn and face that which is stopping me? Right, and and if you've done dream work, you know that the nightmares, of the dream, the nightmares are the ones that really wake us up, right? Where our heart's pounding, we're sweating. It's like, Okay, all right, there's something here, there's a gift, right. And as somebody who does also teach us dream work, and how we work with our dreams, and understand the messages that are coming through, I've learned, you know, to pay attention to those because they're just wake up calls from our soul, that are telling us there's something we need to pay attention to. And it's really hard to ignore those, right? And typically, they'll recur, they'll keep coming back, right, until we're ready to face them. And so yeah, so facing down that which, you know, we are most afraid of, because there's something, there's a gift there, if you do that work, you know, with whatever that is that's stalking you in your dream, or in your waking life, then you know, there's so much peace, and there's so many rewards for doing that deeper work to say what's you know, what's really going on here? Maybe, maybe it's, you know, it's time to leave that relationship. Right? Maybe that relationship has outlived its usefulness, maybe that job has now, you know, just become a drain, it's taking more energy for you to do that particular job, that there's no joy or passion or whatever was there for you. It's not enough anymore, it's time to leave. Right? So whatever it is, right, this is how death

Unknown Speaker  33:30  
can stalk us and steal our energy if we allow it. Or we can, you know, face that whatever it is that needs to die, right in our waking life so that, you know, we can be born anew. Now this is the opportunity, right? is to be born a new in the Shamanic tradition, that would be the work of the West. And for me, in my teaching is held by the great Jaguar, he was the great Hunter, right, he has no need for enemies, and teaches us how to be courageous and how to be fearless. And to go into those dark places into those shadow places that we haven't dared go before. Right? Because we were afraid about we might have to face or what we might have to decide or, or what we have to let go of so that we can be reborn. Beautifully said. Well, thank you so much for sharing your wisdom. And I would like to be able to chat more about some of these ideas at some other time. So thank you so much for your time here today. You're so welcome, Debra. Always a pleasure to talk with you.

Unknown Speaker  34:47  
Thanks so much for listening. If you like what you've heard, and want to hear more, please subscribe, leave a comment, and a rating, and I promise to send good vibes your way

Transcribed by https://otter.ai