Doula School

Doula School

Doula training prepares you to:

  • Support families to remember the Sacred in all birthing environments
  • Share the honor of birth with parents by empowering and supporting their choices
  • Explore your own birth experience to understand its effect on being a doula
  • Learn many skills to guide parents through pregnancy, labor & postpartum times
  • Become a Certified Sacred Birthing Community Doula

This Sacred Birthing Doula Course will share the joy and wonder of birth through stories and years of experience. Because this wisdom is inside us, this course reawakens your knowing about this amazing passage, and empowers you to be trusted by parents.

By re-experiencing your own birth, you will discover how your whole life is modeled from what happened at your birth. By seeing this yourself, you will KNOW that every baby is conscious at birth. And from this place, your presence as a doula can transform birth.

Be a birthing sister. Uncover your inner birth wisdom to take part in this new paradigm of birth. By becoming a Community Doula, you help birthing mamas and families, and are an integral part of our birthing community.


There is innate awareness and birth wisdom in all our souls. This community doula course will help you, a Birthing Sister, get in touch with the knowledge that is already there waiting to be discovered. It is a personal journey to discover inner wisdom and knowledge that can be accessed when being with women and families in birth. It is a journey that embodies the spiritual as well as the physical and emotional places of conception, pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. Birthing Sisters represents love, compassion, and trust in both the sacred feminine and the sacred masculine that has been a part of the deep wisdom and knowledge that has been overlooked but not forgotten. We will be revealing this lost knowledge and beginning to change the emphasis of fear and pain around birthing to one of joy, pleasure and the pure power that is birth.

This journey to becoming a Birthing Sister/Community Doula, includes becoming aware of your own birth and the impact this has on your life. How does your own birth influence your work as a doula? The journey also includes looking back at how you were parented, as this will influence how you apply your personal wisdom and knowledge to each birthing situation. How you were mothered will influence how you in turn mother others, be that your own children or a woman in labor and during the postpartum time. This Sacred Birthing Community Doula course will prepare you to bring love, guidance, and teamwork with nature and spirit back to childbirth. We will share and honor the birth stories of babies in many different birth environments. And, as we access our deepest knowing around birthing, the innate and pristine wonder of birth will be reclaimed.

Course Outline

The Sacred Birthing Doula course, created and presented by Barbara Essman, is a 60 hour experiential training program that prepares individuals inside and out to be present for the welcoming of babies to earth. Through group discussion, personal inquiry, and a variety of creative projects, Barbara walks the class through the curriculum so that each student arrives with the full understanding of what it means to be born and what is needed to insure that each baby has the opportunity to enter this world unharmed. Articles and films are also included to spark discussion and raise issues.

Session 1 – Introduction

In this first session, students are introduced to the Sacred Birthing Vision of soft birth practices and the core principles that inform a sacred birth. We answer the questions ‘What is a doula?’ and ‘What makes a Sacred Birthing Doula different from other doulas?’ The concept of working with MAP to clear our own birth histories is also introduced.

Session 2 – The Sacred Birthing Insights

Each of the 18 Sacred Birthing Insights is explored in depth through discussion, art work and creative writing. These insights form the foundation for understanding the Sacred Birthing philosophy and include “First, do no harm”, “All birth is sacred” and “The baby’s soul is a conscious creator and participant in conception and birth.” Students can then take these insights into their lives, their work and into the pregnancies and labors that they support.

Session 3 – Food for the Soul and Body K

Nourishment for pre-pregnant, pregnant and lactating mothers is the focus of this session. It takes more than food to care for a pregnant mom. Help take care of her by taking care of yourself. You are a role model. We’ll discuss how you nourish and care for yourself through exercise, food, quiet time, etc. Body kinesiology is introduced as a technique for getting in touch with our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual needs.

Session 4 – Parenting and Your Birth Stories

How you were parented affects how you will in turn mother a mother. Your birth story is your foundation and begins to shape who you are. Each birth story is important. We’ll learn to listen with love and compassion to each story including your own.

Session 5 – Heal Your Own Birth

This 2-day mini workshop gives you the opportunity to see your birth story in action and take responsibility for healing what ever needs to be healed and celebrating what needs to be celebrated about the day you were born. There’s time for integration and discussion as well as a re-experiencing of the birth itself.

Session 6 – Prenatal Care and Pregnancy Changes, the Divine Feminine

In this session, we look at the changes that take place in a woman’s body during pregnancy and at the full range of things to consider as part of prenatal care. We discuss the concept of the Divine Feminine and connect with the divine nature of the mother.

Session 7 – Divine Masculine as Father

The divine male seeks balance within himself with respect to the archetypes of warrior, magician, lover and king. A father’s role during preconception, conception, pregnancy, birth and beyond is very important and all aspects are explored in depth.

Session 8 – Birth Ways

We cover some of the anatomy and physiology of birth, and explore what happens inside the mother while she’s in labor and giving birth. Here soft birth practices will be discussed along with techniques such as toning that can help a woman stay in her ‘birthing bubble’.

Session 9 – Supporting women in labor

Through role-playing and discussion, we’ll get a real feel for a doula’s role at a birth. Value is placed on unmedicated labor and ways a doula can help the mother stay on this path in a variety of settings and circumstances.

Session 10 – Birth Technology

We’ll look at working hand-in-hand with the magic of both the sacred and the modern medical technology. MAP and body kinesiology are called upon, as are monitors and tools of allopathic medicine to provide the best possible outcome for all involved. Preventing birth trauma will be discussed along with circumcision, miscarriage and saying goodbye.

Session 11 – Baby Doula and Baby Whispering

Interaction and communication with a newborn must be done with the utmost care to preserve the soul’s integrity and uphold the baby’s full potential. In this session we’ll discover how Baby Whispering can reduce the effects of any trauma that may have taken place during a birth.

Session 12 – Becoming Parents

The birth as a rite of passage that turns a man and a woman into a father and a mother is very profound and can be an emotional experience leading to elevated states. Then there’s the nitty gritty of baby care for the new being that has just arrived. The care and feeding of both parents and baby are explored.

Session 13 – Creating a Community of Doulas

Community Doulas carry the responsibility of preserving the rituals surrounding birth including blessing ways and placenta rituals. Suggesting, creating and encouraging these rituals with parents-to-be can enhance the birth experience for all involved and lead to bonding and friendship that will last a lifetime. Support for the parents is the goal.