Embracing the Spiritual Gifts of Age with Shadow-work
January 18th, 25th, February 1st, 8th, 2024
4 Live Classes | Offered Live via Zoom
What you will receive:
- 4 Live Webinar Sessions with Q & A
- 4 Links to the Recordings
“Elders are the jewels of humanity that have been mined from the earth, cut in the rough, then buffed and polished by the stonecutter’s art into precious gems that we recognize for their enduring value and beauty.”
— Rabbi Zalman Schacter-Shalomi
In the U.S. ten thousand people turn 65 every day. But institutional ageism, a destructive unconscious bias, is rampant in every sector of society. And internalized ageism, which I call “the inner ageist,” and which leads to denial and self-hate, is epidemic. Tragically, most older adults have no resources to age consciously and thrive in later life. And most clinical training, other than geriatrics, provides no guidance for the inner work of age, for the possibilities of emotional, cognitive, and spiritual development that could be available to all.
How do we use the circumstances of age as openings to psychological and spiritual development? How do we do shadow-work in the context of retirement, illness, loss, and mortality? How do we find spiritual practices that lead to expanding our awareness and increasing our gratitude and fulfillment?
In this four-part series, we will learn the necessary practices to step into a new archetype and become an Elder: breaking through denial of age and moving toward deeper self-acceptance; reviewing our lives to heal our traumas and uncover our gifts, to complete both emotional and spiritual unfinished business; learning to leave behind past roles and identities and to shift from work in the outer world to inner work in the soul. Whether for yourself or your clients, this series offers practices to get people past inner obstacles, or unconscious shadow issues, in order to uncover the hidden spiritual gifts of age.
This Course is Ideal if:
- You struggle with self-acceptance as you age.
- You seek to expand your self-knowledge in midlife and beyond.
- You wish to repair the past.
- You want to explore a new source of creativity in later life.
- You sense a deeper identity beyond your roles and responsibilities.
- You can imagine stepping into a new archetype – the Elder.
- Or you are looking for depth psychological tools and practices for older clients.
Week 1 – January 18, 2024 – Becoming an Elder: A Rite of Passage
This presentation describes a deeply needed rite of passage for our time: how to cross a threshold from hero to Elder, how to make this archetypal shift, a changing of the gods. This internal shift is a stage, not an age. It’s not about becoming a senior, with a Medicare birthday; rather, becoming an Elder requires inner work: breaking through denial and overcoming our unconscious fears of age, completing emotional and spiritual unfinished business, letting go of the past to be fully present, finding a way to serve that leaves a legacy, and discovering a spiritual practice for this time of life, and facing our mortality, as we move toward life completion.
Week 2 – January 25, 2024 – The Gifts of a Life Review of Your Lived and Unlived Life
Life is like a tapestry: We spend the first half of life weaving the fabric, and in the second half we turn it over to see how the threads are interconnected. This practice enables us to find meaning in the patterns of our life stories. And it enables us to see where we need to do life repair.
This presentation describes the traditional life review that is done in midlife or beyond as the ego’s life review. It then adds the dimension of Shadow – the unlived life in the unconscious that is unfolding beneath conscious awareness. And it teaches how to connect what was expressed in the lived life with what was repressed into the shadow. In this way, the unlived life moves into awareness, and we can reclaim some of what was sacrificed to be explored now. This is an animated Power Point, which demonstrates how to do this.
Week 3 – February 1, 2024 – Creativity and Shadow-work: Opening the Portal to the Creative Unconscious
Our intention here is to describe a process for approaching the Shadow or imaginal realm or creative unconscious as a source of unlimited creativity. This presentation explores the archetype of creativity — preparation, incubation, inspiration, production — and adds the dimension of Shadow. At each stage of this creative process, there are potential unconscious blocks. As we learn to use shadow-work to identify the internal saboteurs and how to observe them without following them, we can make a relationship with the creative unconscious that has more enthusiasm than fear, more flow than frustration, and more satisfaction than disappointment.
Week 4 – February 8, 2024 – Meeting the Shadows of Age: Shifting from Role to Soul
Many people face a late-life identity crisis with the transitions to retirement, illness, loss, caregiving, or simply advancing age. They may ask again, Who am I? as the ego’s lifelong identity of Doer disappears, and heroic values of success and image lose their grip. This can feel disorienting and frightening and result in a loss of meaning. But there is a deeper call if we tune in and listen: the call of the soul. If we deny this call to make an inner shift, we won’t cross the threshold from role to soul and discover the spiritual gifts of age.
This presentation will explore the psychological and spiritual potential of this passage, as we learn to use shadow-work to shift our identities from ego to Self, from what we do to who we are — from role to soul. With this inner shift, we find renewed meaning and vitality and a sense of freedom to become who we truly are.
By the End of This Course You Will Be Able To:
- Define the three steps of a rite of passage.
- Name three practices for becoming an Elder.
- Explain Jung’s concept of the Shadow.
- Describe the traditional life review.
- Distinguish between the ego’s lived life and the unlived life in the Shadow.
- Identify the four stages of creativity and the unconscious obstacles to each of them.
- Explain the difference between “role” and “soul” as sources of identity.
- Name the primary shadow character that resists releasing identification with roles and shifting to soul.
Zweig, Connie. The Inner Work of Age: Shifting from Role to Soul, Rochester, Vt.: Inner Traditions (2021).
Zweig, Connie. Meeting the Shadow on the Spiritual Path: The Dance of Darkness and Light in Our Search for Awakening. Rochester, Vt.: Inner Traditions (2023).
January 18th, 25th, February 1st, 8th, 2024
12 Noon – 1:00 PM PST
- $225 General Rate
- $185 Pacifica Alumni, Full Time Students, & Senior Rate
- $135 Pacifica Student Rate
- $30 Continuing Education Credit (CECs) Fee
Participants requesting Continuing Education Credits (CECs) for Online programs must attend all live sessions (offered via Zoom) in order to receive CECs. Please make sure that your Zoom account name matches the name of the attendee requesting CECs.
About the Teachers
Connie Zweig, Ph.D. is a retired therapist and coauthor of Meeting the Shadow and Romancing the Shadow. Her award-winning book, The Inner Work of Age: Shifting from Role to Soul, extends her work on the Shadow into midlife and beyond and explores aging as a spiritual practice. It won the 2022 Gold COVR Award, the 2022 Gold Nautilus Award, the 2021 American Book Fest Award, and the 2021 Best Indie Book Award for best inspirational non-fiction. Her new book, Meeting the Shadow on the Spiritual Path: The Dance of Darkness and Light in Our Search for Awakening, is available now. Connie has been doing contemplative practices for more than 50 years. She is a wife, stepmother, and grandmother. After all these roles, she’s practicing the shift from role to soul.
Cancellations 14 days or more prior to the program start date receive a 100% refund of program registrations. After 14 days, up to 7 days prior to the program start date, a 50% refund is available. For cancellations made less than 7 days of program start date, no refund is available.
For additional information, including travel, cancellation policy, and disability services please visit our general information section.
Continuing Education Credit
This program meets qualifications for 4 hours of continuing education credit for Psychologists through the California Psychological Association (PAC014) Pacifica Graduate Institute is approved by the California Psychological Association to provide continuing education for psychologists. Pacifica Graduate Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Full attendance is required to receive a certificate.
This course meets the qualifications for 4 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Pacifica Graduate Institute is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (#60721) to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs. Pacifica Graduate Institute maintains responsibility for this program/course and its content. Full attendance is required to obtain a certificate.
For Registered Nurses through the California Board of Registered Nurses this conference meets qualifications of 4 hours of continuing education credit are available for RNs through the California Board of Registered Nurses (provider #CEP 7177). Full attendance is required to obtain a certificate.
Pacifica Graduate Institute is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs. Pacifica Graduate Institute maintains responsibility for each program and its content. Full day attendance is required to receive a certificate.
Continuing Education Goal. Pacifica Graduate Institute is committed to offering continuing education courses to train LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and LEPs to treat any client in an ethically and clinically sound manner based upon current accepted standards of practice. Course completion certificates will be awarded at the conclusion of the training and upon participant’s submission of his or her completed evaluation.
CECs and Online Program Attendance: Participants requesting Continuing Education Credits (CECs) for Online programs must attend all live sessions (offered via Zoom) in order to receive CECs. Please make sure that your Zoom account name matches the name of the attendee requesting CECs.
January 18th, 25th, February 1st, 8th, 2024
- Number of Classes: 4 Classes
- Class Length: 90 min.
- Class Time: 12 Noon – 1:00 PM PST
- CECs: 4 CECs
- Total Duration: 6 Hours
The presentations will be recorded and shared after each session for those unable to attend live.