Thoughtful Book Urges Readers to Embrace, Not Suppress, Their Grief

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Leslee Tessmann takes her own experiences dealing with loss to help others learn to grieve in her new book "Sacred Grief: Exploring a New Dimension to Grief."

Most books on grief focus on surviving and understanding the bereavement process, but in her new book, "Sacred Grief: Exploring a New Dimension to Grief" (ISBN 9781932690538, Loving Healing Press, 2008), Leslee Tessmann breaks away from convention and writes about honoring grief as a sacred ritual that allows the cultivation of compassion and the realization of one's fully actualized self.

Though she'd experienced many losses in her life, Tessmann says she resisted grief -- and the painful emotions associated with it -- until her father died in 2004. When he died, she says she decided to honor the deep pain brought on by his death by declaring it sacred. In doing so, she began to relate to grief as something working for, rather than against, her. In "Sacred Grief," Tessmann advocates fostering a relationship with your grief, and shares how learning to embrace grief brought her a fuller, more compassionate life. The lessons gained from "Sacred Grief" are not limited and can be applied to grief caused by any type of serious loss.

Rather than talking about the bereavement process, "Sacred Grief" examines grief as a relationship and a universal life force. Tessmann explains what she means by a relationship with grief by highlighting the differences between the meaning of grief in Eastern and Western cultures. While Western cultures tend to associate grief with pain, most Eastern cultures see grief as a healing energy full of just as much love, joy and honor as pain and suffering. Tessmann says that your relationship with grief begins with how you choose to define it.

"Sacred Grief" also explores the unnecessary suffering caused by a tendency to suppress grief and the global impact of unresolved trauma. The book shows readers how grief, as a healing process, helps foster emotional growth. "Grief is like a friend who cares for us and is there to help us heal so that we can keep expanding into our fully actualized selves," Tessmann says. "Every time we grieve, there are gifts to be gleaned, compassion to be cultivated and beginnings and endings to be honored."

About the Author
Leslee Tessmann resides in Houston, Texas. She was born and raised in Wisconsin and later moved to Seattle, where she lived for 31 years. She lectures and teaches workshops on the concepts explored in her book, as well as on spirituality, communication and recovery issues. Her college education focused on psychology and sociology and fueled her intrigue with the complexities of the human brain and mind.

"Sacred Grief: Exploring a New Dimension to Grief" (ISBN 9781932690538, Loving Healing Press, 2008) can be purchased through local or online bookstores. For more information, visit Publicity contact: Review copies available upon request.


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