Rev. Heidi Ruth Riggenbach Dittrich began work in the area of death, dying and bereavement in 2001, when the loss of her mother coincided with her retirement as tenured professor at the University of Washington, Seattle. Her years living and teaching in diverse regions, including China, Malaysia, and Zimbabwe, had piqued her interest in the wildly different approaches to death, and beliefs about the afterlife.

Since 2003, Heidi has tended to the dying as hospice volunteer, 'gatekeeper' / death midwife, and home funeral facilitator. She is an educator and guide into the grieving process, offering workshops, support groups and one-on-one sessions. Suicide and the resulting family fallout is one of her areas of expertise.

As an ordained interfaith minister (One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, New York), Heidi works with a variety of populations, performing weddings, conducting funerals, and everything in between. She leads laughter yoga sessions along with her husband Dan Dittrich, both certified laughter yoga leaders. She often incorporates ritual into her work, drawing from her study with Malidoma Somé, professor, shaman and author of The Healing Wisdom of Africa. Her more recent training is in ars moriendi, the sacred art of dying, as presented by The Sacred Art of Living Center's education program (Bend, Oregon) and their extraordinary Anamcara apprenticeship.

As Heidi enters the '3rd movement of the symphony' of her own life, her interest has gravitated to our aging population. Her passion for the transformation of consciousness – the fruit of our spiritual eldering – is the next right thing.

 

 

 

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