Home Upcoming Events Healing Grief with the Sacred Wheel with Cheryl Downey G2201020

Healing Grief with the Sacred Wheel with Cheryl Downey G2201020

This course is entitled “Healing Grief Around the Sacred Wheel” for many reasons. The Sacred Wheel and the powers of the four directions are ancient and profound tools for deepening self-awareness and bringing healing balance to the flow of life energies. Movement around the Wheel honors each one’s uniqueness of culture, personality, and faith perspective; and is a powerful non-judgmental guide for exploring and understanding one’s personal energies of grief – whether old or young, experiencing current or past loss, or anticipating future life transitions.

The Wheel is meant to move – and so is grief! – and both will do so at the pace that is right for each of us. There is no right or wrong way to do this, as there is no right or wrong way to grieve. The course will bring participants into the four major healing aspects of their own grief experience by spending a day in each direction: South (Physical/Earth); West (Emotional/Dreaming/Water); North (Spirit/Air/Wind); East (Mind/Fire) ending in the Center (Heart).

Group teachings, reflections and guided visualizations will fill the mornings 9:00 – noon, followed by personal free time/ work on the land after lunch until dinner (5:30 – 6:30). We will do our West work by traveling to Lake Abiquiu and Rio Chama for a morning field trip with the additional possibility of going to the hot springs of Ojo Caliente for the afternoon (there is a $50 individual day use fee for each participant to enter the hot springs).

Participants will gather for evening sessions from 7-8:30 pm for circle-sharing and artwork. Throughout the week participants will be creating their personal sacred art ongoing, including a small pouch to be decorated in a sacred way to hold symbols of release gathered from the work. The pouches with their sacred contents will be given away to the Sacred Fire and transformed the last evening. There is no pre-requisite knowledge or preparation for this work. Participants may be any age (18+) having experienced any loss(es) – including loss of a loved one through death or illness, loss of relationship through break-up or divorce, home, job, career, health, community – and need only to be willing to start the journey around the Sacred Wheel!

What participants may gain from this course: – The discovery of the four directional aspects around the Sacred Wheel and the grief energies held within each of them – An understanding that grief is not something to be cured but simply accepted and allowed as healing movement – An awakening to energy we get from the earth to help us feel and heal the ways we hold grief in our bodies – An experience of the power of water for grief movement and release – Empowerment of personal spirit connections and healing wisdom through inner conversation, ceremony, listening to the wind, prayer, dreams, meditation and journaling – Discovery of ways to shift negative and constricting thoughts about grief – The power of sacred art for healing and wisdom-keeping – The blessings of love and gratitude!


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Please use the options below to find helpful information regarding Ghost Ranch Workshops and Retreats

If you need shuttle service, please reach out to Kevin at White Buffalo Shuttle 831.359.8077/ |  nivek@cruzio.com

No notes for this event

Virtual Events: Payments made for Virtual Events are non-refundable. If you are unable to attend the event, recordings will be made available to you after the event. For events with multiple sessions, every attempt will be made to make the session(s) available to you before the next scheduled session.

In-Person Events: During this Covid-19 pandemic period, written notification must be received no later than 45 days prior to the start date of your workshop in order to receive a refund, minus a $100 processing charge. No refunds will be processed after that time. We reserve the right to announce a change in leadership or cancel any program 45 days prior to the first day of the workshop. In that event, you may transfer to another workshop without charge or we will refund the full workshop payment. Many participants have found it helpful to purchase travel insurance. This cancellation policy does not apply to January term. If the cancellation is Covid-related and is received less than 45 days prior to your start date, your funds will be left on deposit for another ghost ranch workshop or future stay or you can make it a full donation to support us through this unique business period.

Ghost Ranch Scholarship Request

Thank you for your interest in applying for a Ghost Ranch scholarship. The typical scholarship amount is $100-350. We are able to grant more scholarships in the winter, spring and late fall seasons than we are in the summer months. 

You will receive a copy of your scholarship form after you submit it and should hear back from Ghost Ranch about your application within a 10 working days. If you have additional questions, please reach out to Robin Keck, robingk@ghostranch.org.



Click here to see a full list of FAQs

What day/time does the workshop start and end?

In-person workshops begin with check-in at 3:00 p.m. and a ranch orientation in the evening on the first date listed for the course and end at 10:00 a.m. with checkout on the last date listed.

Virtual workshops will have a varied schedule that is identified within each workshop description.

During Covid safety period - single occupancy lodging is the standard
  • During Covid-19 periods, all lodging types will be single occupancy at no additional charge. Of course, you can share a room with a spouse, partner, family or another person that shares your full-time residence. The extra folks that share a room will pay for workshop registration fees and meals.
What is the difference between a room with private bath, a room with semi-private or shared bath, and a room with communal/dorm bath?

Private bath refers to the type of bathroom, not single occupancy

Private Bath Room: There is a bathroom in that one room that is not shared between or with any other rooms. The highest rate tier of Ghost Ranch lodging.

Semi-private/shared: There is a bathroom between two rooms that is shared by the occupants of the two adjoining sleeping rooms. These rooms will only be used as family or group suites, not to be shared by unknown neighbors as in the past.

Communal/dorm: There is a communal bathroom/shower in the lodging building and participants will need to exit their room to reach these facilities.

Click here to learn more about lodging at Ghost Ranch



  • Cheryl Downey
    Cheryl Downey

    Cheryl Downey, M.Div., Minister of Sacred Arts, has been guiding and supporting those with grieving hearts for 35 years as a former hospital and hospice chaplain (ordained UCC). Since 2000 she has also trained, practiced and mentored women and men in spiritual healing and the sacred arts from within universal shamanic teachings that empower the wisdom of woman and nature. After retiring from hospice in 2013, Cheryl founded the Sacred Wheel Center for Grief and Healing as a safe “space” for grief-hearted ones to explore the deep mysteries of their grief, to see themselves through their own grief mirrors and to discover the hidden truth and beauty at the heart of their healing.

    Among other shamanic healing tools and sacred arts, the Sacred Wheel is an ancient and simple tool for illuminating and shifting deeply held, blocked or knotted energies within the four basic directional aspects of our grieving self: physical, emotional, spiritual and mental. Whether experiencing acute or long-held losses of loved ones or pets, or life transitions such as loss of job, home, physical health, or empty nest, the Wheel turns at the pace you need and can trust. Cheryl has a private practice in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area and has led workshops, seminars and retreats, in addition to individual sessions, including a four-day Grief-Healing Spa Retreat. She is the author of “Emerging from the Dark: Grief Around the Sacred Wheel” which is nearing publication.


Oct 30 2022 - Nov 04 2022





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