Here's a list of some of our favorite books, authors, articles and videos on death & dying that we would like to share for the love of learning.
Living into Dying - A Journal of Spiritual and Practical Deathcare for Family and Community by Nancy Jewel Poer
Holding Space - on Loving, Dying and Letting Go by Amy Wright Glenn
Wonders at the Veil - Creating a Living Relationship with Your Loved Ones Who Have Died by Lynn Rollins Stull
Caring for the Dying - The Doula Approach to a Meaningful Death by Henry Fersko-Weiss
The Green Burial Guidebook - Everything You Need to Plan an Affordable, Environmentally Friendly Burial by Elizabeth Fournier
Words at the Threshold - What We Say As We’re Nearing Death by Lisa Smartt
Reimagining Death - Stories and Practical Wisdom by Lucinda Herring
Die Wise: A Manifesto for Sanity and Soul
-By Stephen Jenkinson
This book is life and death changing. As most of us have been raised and enculturated in the dominant North American “death-phobic and grief-illiterate” society, this is a declaration for a culture shift. It is extremely rich and best digested by savoring in small bits and often repeated. We recommend that you listen to the audio version narrated by the author himself, who is a magnificent story teller. Also recommended is the Canadian documentary film "Griefwalker" featuring the author. Here is just a little sample taste:
"You and I will die. This is a given, entirely proper…. But the manner of our dying is not a given. That, with deep labour, is up to us. This is one of the life gifts entrusted to us at birth, dazzling as the night sky and burdensome as any vision is of how it all could be."
"People die in the manner of their living. Lately that hasn’t been good, and we’ve wished otherwise for ourselves and for them."
“Grief is the midwife of your capacity to be immensely grateful for being born.”
“Dying is active. Dying is not what happens to you. Dying is what you do.”
Five Invitations: What Death Can Teach About Living
-by Frank Ostaseski
1. Don’t Wait.
When people are dying, it is easy for them to recognize that every minute, every breath counts. But the truth is, death is always with us. Everything is constantly changing. Nothing is permanent.
2. Welcome Everything; Push Away Nothing
In welcoming everything, we don't have to like what's arising or necessarily agree with it, but we need to be willing to meet it, to learn from it.
3. Bring Your Whole Self to the Experience
To be whole, we need to include and connect all parts of ourselves. Wholeness does not mean perfection. It means no part left out.
4. Find a Place of Rest in the Middle of Things
We often think of rest as something that will come to us when everything else in our lives is complete.
5. Cultivate “Don’t Know” Mind
This describes a mind that's open and receptive. It is not limited by agendas, roles, and expectations. It is free to discover.