June 6, 2019

"On earth there is no heaven,

but there are pieces of it."

                      Jules Renard

It was a beautiful summer day, with a warm breeze blowing through the leaves of the trees and birds chirping on the branches, a...

March 22, 2019

In a society where we are so separated from death in daily life, with most people either dying in the hospital or in a nursing facility, we are, as a result, also separated from how to be with those who are dying. In addition, dying is no longer seen as a natural part...

July 18, 2018

This post has eluded me for weeks, mostly because of the raw intensity and discomfort of the experience. I now realize I might never mold the words quite right.  But, I will write it anyway. I also struggle with the sympathy this post will evoke from the reader, which...

February 18, 2018

Where would you think most college students would be at 10:30 on a wintry Saturday morning in mid-February?

It’s highly unlikely that you would guess, a Death Café, but that’s exactly where nearly 20 students on the Kenyon College campus were yesterday morning. (And it...

March 20, 2017

The documentary last evening, Facing Death, provided the impetus for viewers' profound discussion about end-of-life challenges and conversations.

Providing a sobering real-life glimpse into Mt. Sinai's ICU and how the subject of death is handled with patients and l...

January 29, 2017

This past Friday evening's documentary on green burials (A Will for the Woods) was received by viewers with such comments as "How absolutely beautiful", "So touching, real and natural".  One individual  who had spoken beforehand about the "creepiness" of typical funera...

December 28, 2016

Green burials are finding their way into

mainstream talk. This movement continues to build momentum.  I am excited to share "A Will for the Woods", a documentary about green burials, next month. I hope you will join me. 

The documentary will be held in a new lo...

May 17, 2016

 

The other night I have a talk to a group of people who are volunteer workers for the American Cancer Society.  As I looked around the room, it occurred to me that there were two different types of people attending the meeting- those who came because they chose to, and...

April 13, 2016

An attractive, healthy-appearing young woman came to my office the other day.  "I've had a big operation, radiation therapy, and a year's worth of chemotherapy", she announced.  "Congratulations," I said.  "You look great.  What can I do for you?"  "Now what do I do?"...

March 8, 2016

As a cancer specialist, I work daily with people in life-threatening situations, and I commonly share experiences with patients who are dying of their disease.  Many of my colleagues think that my work must be depressing and discouraging, but the truth is, my work is v...

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