Our 2024 Conference

The Influence of Embedded Religious Beliefs
in End-of-Life Mystical Experiences


Illustration by Seb Agresti
Saturday August. 24, 2024 - ONLINE

Can't attend online in real time? No worries!
All registrants will receive a link to all the conference recordings.

Join us online for an extraordinary day of shared wisdom and in-depth exploration
of how embedded religious doctrines and imagery
can influence the mystical experiences of the dying and the bereaved.

What You Will Learn

. Identify beliefs that can cause fear at end of life
or complicate the mourning process.

. Spiritual practices that can help alleviate fear and anxiety

. Research on deathbed dreams and visions

. Historical perspectives on mystical experiences in the death and grief

Who Should Attend:

. Physicians, nurses and medical staff
. Counselors, psychologists and social workers
. Hospice professionals in all disciplines
. Spiritual seekers and mystics
. Bereaved individuals and caregivers
. Theologians and religious scholars
. Anyone working with death, dying and bereavement

Six CE credit hours available for nurses, social workers, counselors and more 
See our Continuing Education page for details.

2024 Conference on Death, Grief and Belief
- Presenters and Programs -
All presentations will be recorded and registered attendees will receive links to the recordings

Christopher Kerr, MD, PhD
Deathbed Dreams and Visions
Although medically ignored, mystical dreams and visions at end of life are near-universal experiences that often provide comfort to the dying and their loved ones. Dr. Kerr and his team have published multiple studies on this topic and documented over 1,500 such events. This talk will focus on published research that validates patients' dreams and visions at the end of life, and will  explore how these experiences can provide comfort, meaning and insight.  

Ken Doka, PhD
Religious Influences on
Extraordinary Experiences  

This presentation explores how religious beliefs can influence Nearing Death Awareness, Near Death Experiences, and Post-Bereavement Experiences. We'll emphasize ways to assist individuals in interpreting these encounters, with a focus on  spiritual conflicts that might arise, as well as  ways that such beliefs may inform the grieving process.

Jamie Eaddy, DMin
From Heaven's Gates to Hell's Fire:
Religious Indoctrination and Its Influence
on Near-Death and Grieving
Ingrained beliefs color our views on death and mourning customs, and understanding these influences provides insights into how faith can both illuminate and complicate experience of dying and grieving. Attendees will learn how faith can be both a beacon and a barrier in navigating the complexities of grief and bereavement. 

Gregory Shushan, PhD
Near-Death Experiences: Historical, Cultural,
and Religious Dimensions
Explore cross-cultural and historical NDE accounts from cultures around the world, and the symbiotic relationships between NDEs and beliefs about an afterlife, from ancient civilizations to indigenous societies. In addition to being an important contribution to the history of religions, Shushan's findings have profound implications for the possibility of an actual afterlife.

Joshua Black, PhD
Religious Influence on Grief Dreams
Dreams of the deceased have received inadequate attention in academic circles and bereavement research. This lack of attention has had an impact on the support provided for the bereaved of all ages. This presentation examines how religious beliefs shape the imagery and understanding of these dreams of the deceased. This comprehension may either assist or impede the bereaved in navigating their grief journey.

Richard Groves, MA, MDiv
Deathbed Mystics: A Universal Experience
Professor Richard Groves is an internationally respected teacher of the sacred art of living and dying. A chaplain for more than 25 years, Richard speaks nine languages and has earned graduate degrees in theology, ethics, world religions and law. Richard and his wife, Mary are the founders of the Sacred Art of Living Center in Bend, Oregon.


expert in toxic religious beliefs
Dr. Terri Daniel is an inter-spiritual hospice chaplain, end-of-life educator, and grief counselor certified in death, dying and bereavement by the Association of Death Education and Counseling and in family-focused grief therapy by The Portland institute. She conducts workshops throughout the U.S. and is an adjunct instructor in thanatology and chaplaincy at Marian University, the University of Maryland and the Graduate Theological Union. She  is also the founder of The Conference on Death, Grief and Belief,  and the Ask Doctor Death podcast. 

Terri has a BA in Religious Studies from Marylhurst University, an MA in Pastoral Care from Fordham University, and a Doctor of Ministry in Pastoral  Counseling from the San Francisco Theological Seminary.

Conference Agenda
Speakers and Schedules are Subject to Change Without Notice

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Terri Daniel's book, Grief and God: When Religion Does More Harm Than Healing 

Or call 971-236-1541