Cathartic Hand Dove Releases

“You have no idea what happened inside me when I let that bird fly…”


We have few traditional and symbolic rituals to assist us with difficult and complex life events — family separations, traumatic illness that becomes a daily presence in a community of friends, the giving and receiving of an adoption, teens in transition or difficulty. These times come to us and it is ours to respond with courage, creativity and love. I guide you to create a dove release ritual, one that defines how you are all committed to move forward. What is the value of this gift to yourselves, that you may move forward in clarity? I will teach you to safely hold and release a white bird from your hands, and you will frame everything that you are letting fly. It may be difficult for you to make that simple gesture, to let go, but it is deeply powerful when it comes. Feeling the heartbeat of a living being in your palms is centering and healing. These releases are cathartic, they honor, they bring beauty in a moment and a symbol for each to remember and use in times of difficulty.

The most powerful releases have been at times where emotions are complex and mixed. Around the doves, even people with strong feelings of anger, regret, and guilt are able to begin to soften. As with many animal-assisted therapies, these birds can smooth and guide movement towards healing and strength. They respond positively to self-calming by the holder. These white homing pigeons are universally associated with love, with freedom, faith, hope and home. This is a powerful, non-verbal teacher.

In each of my retreats and workshops my retreatants become ready for a release, ready to let go of what no longer serves them. For anyone in transition, coming through or on the verge of a breakthrough, or coming to the end of a difficult period, the usefulness is clear and the results can feel magical. A release can also be powerful as an element of bonding. For a family in crisis, a group release is a beautiful experience.

Working with you from any location in the Gallatin Valley or from our clearing in the aspen grove, I craft a simple, powerful and universal ritual, personal to each person. Give yourselves the gift of moving forward clearly into the next.

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To move forward, you need to know what no longer serves you, and let it go…

Dear Lorca, my dove release in August was one of inspiration, freedom and letting go of the old…heading with passion into the new.  Thanks for being on my path! Keep doing what you’re doing! sending hugs this time from Palm Springs.