Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Being with Dying: Cultivating Compassion and Fearlessness in the Presence of Death Paperback – November 17, 2009
|New from||Used from|
Up to 50% off select Non-Fiction books
Featured titles are up to 50% off for a limited time. See all titles
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“This compelling, brave, and wise book draws from a lifetime of remarkable work with people at the end of life.”—Andrew Weil, MD
“Joan Halifax has a knack for straight talk and sublime insight—a no-holds-barred approach to life’s greatest challenge, dying well. This book beckons to those who dare, and those who care; it’s a profound and practical guidebook to the inevitable final dance.”—Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence
“This book is a gift of wisdom and practical guidance for living.”—<st1:place w:st="on"> <st1:city w:st="on">Ira Byock</st1:city>, <st1:state w:st="on">MD</st1:state> </st1:place>, author of Dying Well and The Four Things That Matter Most
Top Customer Reviews
It is cut-to-the-bone view of dying with many personal case stories.
The book is in my view not so well-structured. It is divided in sections, but these overlap, and it seems more like a long association about dying, care-taking and the death process. Sometimes the subject in focus is elaborated and sometimes there is a lot of condensed knowledge in a few sentences.
But it doesn't matter.
You are taken on a journey by this book. It contains so much knowledge (years of experience in the field), so much good advice for living more fully, and so many obvious ways to handle the dying process.
The book describes subjects only rarely found in other similar books - how to take care of the body after death (which can be tremendous healing for grievers I must say from personal experience) and the shadow side of caregiving.
I especially like the description of the dissolution of the elements just before death - indeed what it feels like physically to die - experienced from the inside!
It contains many touching stories, and simple, yet profound sentences of great wisdom - summations of experience from Joan's many hours and years on the bedside of dying fellow human beings.
I only read about 20-30 pages a day to have time to think about and absorb the knowledge in the book.
It is stressed again and again that there are no single good way to die. What the dying person experiences can be so very different from what family, friends, and caretakers experience from the outside.Read more ›
With unflinching honesty and deep compassion for the dying person, Halifax explores all the aspects of dying and death that, in being with a dying person, a caregiver may experience. She deals with the spiritual, physical, mental and emotional processes that dying activates and how this affects both the dying person and those around him.
There was some bias against family members and friends acting as caregivers to the dying. All her empathy lies with the dying person, which is as it should be, but Halifax is, at times, quite unsympathetic to the emotional pain, suffering and struggle from the family caregivers' side. Her negative view of caretaker archetypes reveals a subtle disdain for the role of family caregivers.
Unfortunately, this slightly detracts from the inherent wisdom of her advice and Buddhist philosophy. Not all of us have the temperament or self-mastery to become a detached caregiver. All non-professional caregivers do is try to give their loved ones the best that they can out of love. Yes, with hindsight, the mistakes they make may have made dying more difficult for the departing soul, but the resulting guilt also makes the loss harder to bear even when the non-professional caregiver knows the loved one's soul is finally at peace. Halifax's compassion was all for the dying and there was very little left over for the family members living for years in that strange limbo between deep love, anticipatory grief, impending loss and physical exhaustion.Read more ›
Joan Halifax shares many stories of her experience with death and dying, which I found a great comfort, having not yet experienced death or profound loss in my life. She reminds us that no has escaped death, not Jesus, Mohamed or Buddha. Her writing also helped me let go of any idea or story about how my mother's last weeks and ultimate passing would or should look like. It helped me be more present with my mom and meet her and myself in each moment as we were - in all the beauty, light and love as well as the confusion, darkness and sorrow.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Joan Halifax does a beautiful job shining a light on a topic that has been deeply hidden by most in our Western Culture. Read morePublished 18 days ago by LIZDVM
If you need or want to help someone who is dying, read this book. If you are concerned about handling your own death, read this book. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Jack L.
It's hard to categorize this beautiful book. It's about being a caretaker for the dying, but also about being present for ourselves in our own lives. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Maeri
An intense, compassionate look at how to be with dying people, with many lessons to be learned for one's own dying. To be read and re-read.Published 5 months ago by Claire E. Yamauchi
fantastic insight with stories that were uplifting in the moments of the process while living. I am using this today while I am a compassionate caregiver. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Friday's Guest
My brother was a year older than me. He had pancreatic cancer and died. I ordered this book when I was struggling with losing him.
It helped me tremendously. Read more