How do we think about death? How do we think about the dying? What’s the current state of palliative and end-of-life health care, and how can we improve it? And how do we give care without becoming emotionally and spiritually depleted? In Awake at the Bedside, pioneers of palliative and end-of-life care — as well as doctors, Dharma teachers, chaplains, poets, and caregivers of all kinds — offer insights on incredibly challenging questions like these.
This book isn’t about dying. It’s about life and what life has to teach us. It’s about caring and what giving care really means. Equal parts instruction manual and spiritual testimony, it includes specific instructions and personal accounts to inspire, counsel, and teach. An indispensable resource for anyone involved in hospice work or caregiving of any kind.
Contributors include Anyen Rinpoche, Coleman Barks, Craig D. Blinderman, Bhikkhu Bodhi, Joshua Bright, Ira Byock, Robert Chodo Campbell, Rafael Campo, Ajahn Chah, Ram Dass, Kirsten DeLeo, Issan Dorsey, Mark Doty, Norman Fischer, Nick Flynn, Gil Fronsdal, Joseph Goldstein, Shodo Harada Roshi, Tony Hoagland, Marie Howe, Fernando Kawai, Michael Kearney, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Stanley Kunitz, Stephen and Ondrea Levine, Judy Lief, Betsy MacGregor, Diane E. Meier, W. S. Merwin, Naomi Shihab Nye, Frank Ostaseski, Rachel Naome Remen, Larry Rosenberg, Rumi, Cicely Saunders, Senryu, Jason Shinder, Derek Walcott, Radhule B. Weininger.
“Marvelous. A compilation of essential treasures exploring the face and feeling of utter engagement, compassion, and wisdom in turning toward death and being present with and for people who are dying. Our culture might benefit greatly from this book and its institutional implications for end of life care and for caring, period.”
—Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Wherever You Go, There You Are
“Awake at the Bedside is a beacon in the dark night of our healthcare system today. It is a must read.”
—Donna Karan, fashion designer & founder of Urban Zen Foundation
“Awake at the Bedside brings together an extraordinary group of teachers who share their wisdom and insights into the great issue of our lives: how to understand the dying process in a way that allows for grace and peace as we transition into what for most of us is the great mystery. This volume will certainly be of help for accompanying others in their journeys as well as providing a deeper understanding of our own. ”
—Joseph Goldstein, author of Mindfulness
“This nourishing book, Awake at the Bedside, should be required reading for any compassionate caregiver engaged in fostering healing in themselves, clients, loved ones and society. It envisions revolutionary change in how we care for ourselves and the world.”
—Dr. Andrew Weil
“Profoundly moving, inspiring and helpful, Awake at the Bedside is a real treasure.”
—Jack Kornfield, author of A Path With Heart
“Moving and informative—this is a much needed book! Put into practice, the wisdom of Awake at the Bedside could transform end-of-life care in America. And, every reader will receive support from the collective understanding shared in these pages.”
—Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness