April 19th, 2019

Ecological grief on SACPA menu today

By Mabell, Dave on November 22, 2018.

Lethbridge Herald

Grief is a common human response to loss: Loss of a partner, loss of a child, loss of a friend.

But people also mourn the loss of natural spaces along with the traditions and memories created there.

First Nations people have suffered the loss of their traditional lands and customs. And now counsellors are beginning to recognize “ecological grief,” as more people react to the impacts of industrial activities and climate change.

Wildfires, floods, ferocious storms – they seem to be becoming “the new normal” and the level of grief is increasing.

Two speakers at today’s Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs forum will suggest ways for Canadians to deal with that grief. Environmental scientist Amy Spark and spiritual director Jodi Lammiman will be featured at the lunch-hour event, with all interested welcome to attend.

Spark, a sustainability co-ordinator at Bow Valley College, is also an advocate concerned with “the intersection between ecological and mental health.” Her research includes tracking patterns of ecological grief as the Ghost River Valley was flooded for a hydro-electric project.

Lammiman, a student of sacred literature and spiritual direction, lived and worked in a retreat community for four years. Now a retreat facilitator as well as a spiritual director, she was immersed in the practices of hospitality, active listening and contemplative living while at the retreat centre.

SACPA sessions are held at the Royal Canadian Legion, with doors open at 11:30 a.m. and the presentation at noon. An open question period will follow the (optional) hot lunch.

Share this story:


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.