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Life, Death & The Space Between

Dec 22, 2022

“Imagination is where we get in touch with other realms. Imagination is where we see the unseeable.” — Karen V. Johnson





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How can death be a doorway?


Today I talk with Karen V. Johnson. Karen is a graduate of Georgetown Law Center and a former Fulbright Scholar in Afghanistan. She holds Master’s Degrees in both Public Health and Public International Affairs. She’s a retired Administrative Law Judge of more than 30 years, former Army officer (retired), a master practitioner of energy medicine, and author of “Living Grieving: Using Energy Medicine to Alchemize Grief and Loss.”


Listen in to hear Karen’s journey from her left-brained world into spirituality, how she uses the four winds medicine wheel, and how you can get in touch with your inner divine too.


Topics We Discuss:


  • [1:30] Talk about a shift! Karen was living a left-brained life in Washington, DC working as a Federal Judge, when her 27 year old son tragically died from a heroin overdose. Karen says sometimes death is a doorway to a spiritual life. Shortly after his death, Karen experienced an afterlife visitation from her son, started sensing and seeing him, and then started seeing other spirits. She now helps “stuck” spirits cross over.


  • [9:10] How to edge yourself toward your own psychic sense of other realms: first get over the hurdle of disbelieving and allow yourself to tune into your intuition. For most of us, our intuition has been shut off because over the years we’ve been told to focus on the facts. Karen tells people to imagine saying to your left brain, “Thank you for all you’ve done, but I want to play with my right brain.” Set your intention. Open your heart.


  • [10:30] Karen’s honest discussion of how severe her grief became, eventually feeling desperately suicidal. A spiritual course in Joshua Tree, California turned things around for her. She began her spiritual journey.


  • [14:10] Karen’s book, “Living Grief” is based on Indigenous medicine wheels as applied to grief. There are four directions (north, east, west and south) and four practices associated with each direction; therefore, 16 ways to journey from being stuck in our grief to a place of rebirth. We can create a new life out of the ashes that honors our loved ones.


  • [16:00] Karen’s healing practice uses ceremony. In the West, we understand ceremony when we walk into a temple or a church: there are candles and we get a feeling of that sacred place and the divine. Even if we’re not a member of that religion, we might go light a candle. Karen helps mirror that experience of the divine by getting people from their reptilian brain to their ceremonial brain in the neocortex.


  • [25:45] By releasing the chatter in our minds and being in stillness, we can experience the divinity within us. We’re not just physical creatures. We have a spiritual, transcendent element that we want to get in touch with and allow to guide us.


  • [30:01] Indigineous alchemy. What if we’re wired for transformation? What if we have this inherent nature that looks for transformation and change?  By keeping ourselves stuck, we’re actually holding in negative energy that affects our bodies.


  • [35:10] Psychopomps are beings that can go between realms; Karen leaves this realm and goes in the in-between to help souls transition to the other side.



Find Karen and the programs she offers on her website or on Instagram.

Her new book, “Living Grieving: Using Energy Medicine to Alchemize Grief and Loss” is available on Amazon.  


Life, Death and the Space Between is brought to you by:

Dr. Amy Robbins | Host, Executive Producer

PJ Duke | Executive Producer

2 Market Media | Audio and Video Editing

Mara Stallins | Outreach & Social Media Strategy

Claire | | Podcast Cover Design