En~chanting Beyond
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Bedside Singing for
Birthing Mothers

Bedside Singing for
Dying
Loved Ones

and Poetry for the Dying
and those who loved them

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for
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About Us
& Logo Symbology

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Other Resources
on Bedside Singing, Music Therapy, End of Life & Pan-death information (Death Midwifery, Funeral Celebrants, etc.),
in Canada, United States and England

Beyonds.ca
Sister Sites

E~merging Beyond
Mediation Services

Journeying Beyond
Death Midwifery and 'end of life' consulation services

 

     
 
About Us
and
Logo
Symbology

Vocal music
used to support

the journey
through the
major
life-passages
of birthing

and dying
Victoria, B. C.
On this page About Enchanting Beyond organization and founder
  Logo Symoblogy

About UsEn~chanting Beyond was set up to offer Bedside Singing services to those who are giving birth or dying, in various kinds of environments around the Victoria, B.C. area.Those involved have a background in health services, pastoral care and/or alternative therapies as well as a love for music, and a passion for its ability to support life-passages.

Pashta MaryMoon is our Musical Director and elder Bedside Singer.Her interest in natural dying processes began after being deeply affected by an old Western movie at the age of 7 but it took until she reached her 50s to find a concrete vehicle to combine that with her musical background.She visited Elizabeth Kubler-Ross's Shanti Nilaya center in the late 1970s, in search of answers to her questions about the dying process.

In the 1980s, she worked with Northern Lights (Ontario) a self-help community for people living with HIV/AIDS and used Bedside Singing to support friends and co-workers who were dying from this disease, as well as officiating at their requiems or memorials.During the same time period, she was birth-coach for 3 single mothers, and began to recognize the power of music to help them through the birthing process.One of these cases included the birth of a fetus who had died in utero: and she stayed with the mother for 36 hours afterwards, using Bedside Singing as part of the support to the mother's immediate grieving.

Pashta's background is primarily in social concerns and pastoral work.In the late 1990s, she joined the pastoral/spiritual care team at the Royal Jubilee Hospital (Victoria), and became its first non-Christian member.During one experience using Bedside Singing (hymns, in this case) with a patient during this service, she became aware of the power of vocal music as a way to reach those who were dying in a state of partial or full dementia: and this experience left her wondering how to make this kind of musical support more easily available to all people who were dying.

While a member of the Gettin' Higher Choir, she met another singer who had similar interests and was already working as a Victoria Hospice unit volunteer.Together, they co-founded Songs of Passage (SoP), which offers Bedside Singing as a regular service to patients at Victoria Hospice unit in the Royal Jubilee hospital perhaps the first of its kind in Canada to do so as a formal adjunct service to a Hospice unit.SoP's repertoire is similar to and to a great degree, taken from the repertoire of Threshold choir, but offers an invocative program to train singers in the non-singing aspects of working with dying patients.After two years of setting up the program, Pashta left Songs of Passage; and started En~chanting Beyond in order to bring Bedside Singing to those it might help beyond a Hospice unit.

In 2008, Pashta supported a birthing mother using the Toning method of dealing with contractions through her labour and delivery which re-kindled her earlier experience using music to support birth-coaching practices.As a result, En~chanting Beyond now offers Bedside Singing services to both major life-passages birthing and dying.

Pashta offers Death Midwifery services in Victoria, B.C. through Journeying Beyond which includes support to the dying loved one and family preparing for the death, bedside vigil during active dying (including Bedside Singing, if one wishes), after death care, and personalized funeral/memorial services.Contact her at contact us for further information.

As also a mediator (trained by the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Management, and the Justice Institute) and founder of E~merging Beyond mediation services, Pashta has a particular focus on supporting families facing 'end of life' situations.

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Logo Symbology

The base-symbol used in the En~chanting Beyond logo is the character Omega turned upside down.

The Omega symbol itself represents a womb, preparing to 'pour forth' (or 'let down', in birthing language) and dates back at least to the ancient Mesopotamia cultures (3000 B.C.E.), but was also found in ancient China.The symbol was used on gravestones, but was a tribute (or appeal) to a goddess of birthing a connection that existed even in biblical terminology: interestingly, in China, a tombstone was called a "womb-stone".The symbol is best known as the last letter in the Greek alphabet, meaning 'the end': and the general ancient implication was that 'an end always leads to a new beginning' whether reincarnation, or a new life in Heaven or other concepts of Paradise.

Alpha (the beginning) and Omega are often pictured together, reinforcing the idea that the end leads to another beginning.

However, the Omega symbol, itself, carries the connotation of both of the two major passages of a lifeterm in essence, 'Out of the Womb' and 'Into the Tomb'; and implies that the second leads once again to the first.It is interesting that the two words Womb and Tomb are almost identical, but aren't directly related etymologically and yet, the Proto-Indo European base for the word tomb is "to swell", which is one of the key elements of a womb.Some of the earliest uses of the Omega symbol interpret the side handles as the two proto-people (different genders) born out of the Goddess's womb.Whether or not the two words were originally etymologically related, most ancient cultures did see the tomb as a kind of womb to some form of new life.

By turning it upside-down, the 'pouring out' womb becomes a 'holding within' cradle-vessel (or cauldron) of life.It enfolds the journey between the Womb and the Tomb but focuses on the care-taking involved in the beginning and end of it.The tomb element is understood as the release of form (leaving this world) to trans~formation; and the womb element, the new in~form~ation (i.e. fetal development, preparing to enter this world).The rounded part becomes the 'journey of life' itself, and the two side handles become the times of major life passages.

The notes, hanging from the sides as part of the handles, represent using music to aid this 'cradling of the journey into, or out of, this world' on both ends of a lifeterm.The two notes face each other because, while both tomb and womb imply a journey beyond the world they now inhabit (the womb is the first world of a child; our world, its second), they mark the opening and closure of this lifeterm; yet their tails stretch beyond , indicating a journey to somewhere other than where the en~wombed child or dying loved one is now.

If you look very carefully at a full moon, you might see the face of person singing.In most ancient cultures, the Moon was seen as a mother figure, watching over her children during her journey though the night sky and understood to be the protector of dreams, visions, mysteries and/or any development that could not be directly seen.The singing-moon-mother face in the middle of the cauldron/cradle represents both mystical protection through major life-passage journeys, and the power of music to guide these (mostly unseen) journeys.

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Please use the left menu to navigate through the En~chanting Beyond website,
and then contact us for more information on Bedside Singing
in the Victoria, B.C. area, and/or about the general concept
.

 

Blessed Be