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September 20

Sacred Trust and Honor in Dying: Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Meets Hemi-Sync®

It was 1973 when I first encountered Elisabeth's work. During an in-service film at Boston City Hospital where I was a ward secretary, I felt chills swell over my skin as she spoke with deep respect and acceptance about the dying process, and about her involvement with the modern Hospice movement. Elisabeth was instrumental in bringing Hospice across the pond to the US.

First as a volunteer and then as a staffer, I often heard Elisabeth speak eloquently and from the heart about her spiritual awakening.

A few years later I was living in Colorado when I learned of The Denver Hospice (then, Hospice of Metro Denver). HMD was, with Elisabeth's help, just getting started as the third hospice in the country. First as a volunteer and then as a staffer, I often heard Elisabeth speak eloquently and from the heart about her spiritual awakening. One account, in particular, stirred me at the deepest level. She told of visiting a rural laboratory in Virginia where, as she listened to specially blended sounds, her awareness left her body and roamed free. That night, alone in the guest cabin, Elisabeth experienced in exquisite detail the deaths of each of the patients whose transitions she had assisted. It was an excruciating experience for her. She begged for help but was told, “You have to do this by yourself.”

Awakening the next morning she was transformed. The emotional pain had been replaced by love and a powerful sense of connection with Spirit. That experience of opening to her “Spooks,” as she affectionately called them, changed the course of her life and career. She went on to establish Shanti Nilaya, first in California, then West Virginia, a base from which she gave “Life, Death, and Transition” workshops worldwide.

Everyone gets to The Monroe Institute by way of inner guidance and I'm no exception. It was that process that led me to discover that Elisabeth's "rural laboratory" and the Institute were one and the same! A marvelous sense of completeness encompassed me one day when our executive director, Nancy "Scooter" McMoneagle, told me about that experience of Elisabeth's from years before. Scooter had been her monitor while Elisabeth was listening to Hemi-Sync® in the sensory deprivation booth. She had also seen Elisabeth the next morning after her transformation, radiant, and glowing.

Elisabeth’s work introduced the West to the perception of death and dying as being worthy of respect and compassion.

Elisabeth became a family friend. When TMI asked her to present the keynote address at the Professional Seminar she graciously accepted.  Years later Elisabeth, along with well-known paranormal researcher Charles Tart and Bob Monroe, collaborated on the development of the powerful Going Home series, a two-volume set of exercises for anyone with a life-threatening condition and for caregivers of the terminally ill. Going Home has facilitated profound experiences for users around the world.

Elisabeth’s work introduced the West to the perception of death and dying as being worthy of respect and compassion. She revealed the sacred trust we have to honor the transition process. Bob Monroe’s work opened Elisabeth’s eyes to the presence of Guidance in her life, a relationship she cherished and relied upon in all things until her death in 2004.

Their legacies are our blessings. The world is a better place for their having been in it. Today The Monroe Institute’s residential programs continue to welcome thousands of people worldwide who seek to experience expanded consciousness and a greater understanding of life beyond the earth realm. Such programs as Lifeline®, Destination: Higher Self and the Near-Death Experience Intensive educate participants about the spiritual liberation of death either for themselves or for loved ones in transition. Death is a delicate subject and I’m left wondering, without Elisabeth's and Bob’s influences, would we be ready for such programs? I think not.

To read more about Elizabeth's and Bob’s work I recommend the following:

Bob’s books: Monroe Institute Store
Elizabeth’s eulogy: http://www.ekrfoundation.org/eulogy/
EKR Foundation bio: http://www.ekrfoundation.org/bio/elisabeth-kubler-ross-biography/

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross was a Swiss-born psychiatrist, a pioneer in near-death studies and the author of the groundbreaking book On Death and Dying (1969), where she … proposed the now famous Five Stages of Grief ... denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. [from her bio]

For more information about the programs and products mentioned in this article visit our programs section or the store.


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Leslie France

Monroe Projects Manager

Leslie’s current role with the Monroe Institute is Projects Manager. She writes and edits for TMI's social media, newsletter, website, and print publications. She contributes to event coordination and project development as needed. Leslie joined the Monroe Institute in 1986 and served in a variety of roles including Professional Division director and publications editor. She left in 1993 to work with New Visions and to launch BlueWebWeaver, offering training and support for Apple devices. In 2009 Leslie returned to Monroe.