About Your Facilitator and Guide: Dr. Mia Hetényi
I'm Dr. Mia Hetényi, a grief doula, shamanic practitioner, psychospiritual mentor and initiated Dagara diviner with a doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies.
I am also the founder of the Dreaming Awake Institute, a mystery school for grief tending, ancestral healing and recovering our interdependence with ourselves, Spirit and others.
As a sober Hungarian-American medicine woman, I’m the first person in my family born in the US, where I currently live in Western North Carolina on Cherokee land. My ancestors are from Hungary and Bohemia.
I come from a lineage of diviners, death doulas, healers, tree priestesses, dream walkers and artists.
They carry some profound stories of love, magic and redemption, as well as deep suffering at the hands of war, illness and separation from their ability to practice their ways.
I grew up translating and advocating for my parents. As a parentified child, I learned a lot living in this "in-between" space about cultural influence, shadow, people, energy and the psyche.
Deeply sensitive, I saw and felt what people were ignoring. I sensed what was behind things and it often made others uncomfortable, so I learned to shut down my gifts to avoid issues.
Eventually, I drank, a lot, to drown my gifts.
I backpacked through India, volunteered in orphanages, meditated in ashrams, practiced (and studied) Vajrayana Buddhism intensively for 11 years, attended a plethora of personal development workshops, took plant medicine, sat in hundreds of hours of therapy and even did some solid time in the rooms.
It always felt like something was missing.
There was this knowing bubbling up in my bones that there had to be another way to do this...a way that connected me with something vital that was hiding underneath the layers of suffering:
Following the pull of my soul, I spent a year in the woods, alone, sitting under trees.
My biggest spiritual awakenings were not in the ashrams in India, but with trees in big, quiet forests with lots of mystery and wild animals.
Trees taught me about becoming myself.
They taught me how to grieve, and how important it is to our mental health to do so.
They also taught me what my relationship to God was. Which, at the time, was practically non-existent. There, in the forest, this started to heal.
We humans are designed to be much more like trees than we realize.
Little space is made in many communities to honor how radical it is to break these patterns of suffering. The grief of leaving what we love that is breaking us is powerful.
It is sacred grief.
A holy place.
Mystics often say if you want to be with someone close to God, sit with someone who is grieving.
It helps us to repair the ecosystem of relating around us.
It opens us to God, to what matters the most and shows us where we can bring the tears of this love to heal our roots.
Grief is what heals us when we let go.
We don’t need to carry the weight of our ancestors or the vows they made to suffer in survival mode.
They needed to do that to survive, but we get to be the ones who lay it down, pick back up the golden thread of magic and reweave a new tapestry of flourishing and rooted love in our lives.