Consequence of Grief [4 of 4] Grief on the Spirit
Woot! We have made it to the final video and blog post in this 4 part series: The Consequence of Grief.
In today’s post, I will be talking all about how grief affects our spirit and spiritual belief system.
Broadly defined, the essence of spirituality is how we find meaning in life.
For some people, that involves distinctly spiritual and/or religious concepts.
Others who do not adhere to any religious beliefs may live and find meaning in life via a more humanistic lens. This is also spirituality.
During grief, it’s common to enter into an existential crisis, which is the realization that one day, each of us will die. It is understanding that life is not endless and that our days on this planet are numbered.
Most people put the idea of death out of their awareness and go about living their lives without thinking about their mortality.
However, there are times when the fact of death breaks through to the conscious mind.
When that happens people become temporarily terrified until the crisis passes and they achieve a new balance.
The death of friends, relatives and loved ones confronts even the greatest deniers of the fact that life comes to an end.
One of the most difficult issues in grief is restoring faith (or philosophical systems) challenged by the loss.
We all have beliefs that give us some sense of security — that make sense of the world and offer a code for living, whatever the origin may be. Sometimes a loss deeply challenges those notions, leading to a crisis of your belief system.
Naturally, not every loss will challenge your beliefs.
Some losses, however much we grieve them, do not challenge our faith.
Yet, when losses do challenge our beliefs — whatever they may be — it is important to acknowledge the normalcy of such a reaction.
Sometimes we can feel frightened that we are losing our faith. Yet periods of doubt are part of the cycle of belief.
Suffering a major loss usually causes people to confront and reevaluate their belief in life, death and the afterlife.
Some may turn to religion as a source of strength at the time of a loved one’s death and find their faith has deepened. They may also find new meaning in life and prioritize the things that are truly important to them.
Others may question the religious teachings they’ve practiced all their lives and find the very foundations of their beliefs shaken to the core. They begin thinking that God has abandoned them and they become angry with God.
Even those who have had no religious upbringing at all may still feel abandoned by God or angry with God for letting their loved one get sick and die.
Death forces us to confront the spiritual questions we may have been avoiding or haven’t taken the time to address, the questions that get at the very heart and meaning of life: Who am I? Why am I here? Where am I going?
Check out the other 3 videos and blog posts in this series...
1 of 4: Consequences of Grief on the Brain: WATCH HERE
2 of 4: Consequences of Grief on the Body: WATCH HERE
3 of 4: Consequences of Grief on our Relationships: WATCH HERE
Love to you,
Janeen Mary Chasan LCAT ATR-BC
Licensed, Registered and Board Certified Creative Arts Therapist
Filmmaker, Podcaster and Online Educator