Hi everyone! I had the good fortune of interviewing the author of The Final Gift of the Beloved: Her Disappearance - 13 Days, Barron Steffen!
Barron Steffen is a longtime student on the spiritual path of Siddha Yoga, a big band crooner, and a widower. He has been a big wave surfer, a 1980s Italian pop singer, and an award-winning elementary school teacher. Steffen has now fully transitioned from the elementary school classroom to his company, The Yoga of Mindset, where he teaches children and adults how to use their thoughts so they're not used by them.
When Barron Steffen receives the devastating phone call announcing his wife, renowned thought leader Dr. Seana Lowe Steffen, has died in an automobile accident, his world is turned upside down. A deeply spiritual person, Barron decides to follow the mostly Hindu tradition where a person is mourned for thirteen days after their death. On the thirteenth day, a ceremony and celebration of life is performed to honor and invoke blessings for final release from anything that may be holding that person to this physical world.
During the thirteen day journey, Barron draws on nearly forty years of study and training with gurus and meditation teachers to discover ecstatic love, save fractured relationships, and glimpse a greater arc and purpose for being alive. He discovers the most strange and wonderful thing—that hidden within the death of a loved one may also be her final gift to us.
A love story disguised as a tragedy, Barron weaves extraordinarily poignant and powerful experiences with honesty and revelations that will change lives. Along with intense pain and emotion, there is also great beauty and transcendent insight, for nothing is as it appears. The Final Gift of the Beloved is the story of one man's sudden, astonishing brush with devastation and the Divine under the most heartbreaking of circumstances.
I really enjoyed speaking with Barron Steffen about his process of grieving, and how even when he thought his relationship with his late wife had ended, he found that she never left him. We also talk about his process of becoming his own guru, how being present with his grief allowed him to be present for the love within it, and how without his dedicated spiritual practice he might not have been able to discover that love.
Make sure you check it out! And I highly recommend the book!