HHH032 Sarah Chavez – The Order of the Good Death

Part I of my Occult October podcast series!

In this interview, I got to speak with Sarah Chavez, historian and Executive Director of the Order of the Good Death. We discuss the American Civil War’s effect on funeral traditions and the historical power of beans to ward off ghosts and vampires. Find out if it’s bad luck to step on a grave and what’s it mean to be “death positive”! Plus, learn about some ancient, cannibalistic funeral traditions from around the world (like making beer from intestines!)

Death positivity: Contemplation and gratefulness for the time you had with your ancestors

Follow Sarah on Twitter | Instagram | Death and the Maiden | Nourishing Death | Order of the Good Death

You can listen to the episode below or on Soundcloud.

Show Notes:interview with sarah chavez order of the good death

  • Jinx!
  • Linda Vista Hospital
  • American Civil War
  • Embalming
  • Abe Lincoln
  • Queen Victoria
  • Hubert Eaton
  • Forest Lawn Cemetery
  • Hollywood Forever Cemetery
  • Journey Cakes
  • Etruscan tombs
  • Funeral eggs
  • Zoot Suit Riots
  • Mourning fashion
  • Halloween and Samhain
  • M.A.S.H books (remember those?!)
  • Devil’s Night! (origin of Trick or Treat)
  • Dia de los Muertos origins
  • Calaveras
  • Grandma’s Gingerbread muffins (recipe video)
  • The Order of the Good Death
  • Death Salon
  • Funeral potatoes (Sarah’s recipe)
  • Beans
  • “Shades of my ancestors depart!”
  • All Souls Day
  • Fave dei morti (Sarah’s recipe)
  • Osso dei morti
  • Cannibalism
  • Waray people of the Philipinnes
  • Kuru
  • Intestine beer
  • Cooking with cremated remains
  • “Death positive”
  • Caitlin Doughty
  • Mysteries of the death process and laws
  • Book, movie and podcast recommendations


  1. Noemi Shaw on October 11, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Wow how interesting!

    • Hilah on October 13, 2017 at 11:29 am

      Glad you liked this one, Noemi!

  2. Ayla on October 24, 2017 at 2:27 am

    ‘Jynx!’ Love it. 🙂 I really enjoyed this podcast, ever since I can remember I’m intrigued by (ancient) death rituals and all that comes with it. So it was great to hear some new things. Thanks Hilah and Sarah!

    • Hilah on October 24, 2017 at 11:31 am

      So happy you liked this spooky podcast! 🙂 Happy Halloween, Ayla!

      • Ayla on October 31, 2017 at 7:36 am

        Right back at ya! 😉

  3. margo ford on October 25, 2017 at 7:37 am

    I am so interested! I cannot wait ’til I can get the book. I lean towards the raw gore.

    • Hilah on October 27, 2017 at 6:44 am

      It’s fascinating stuff!

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