The Spiritual Mushroom

How do you take the sting out of death and make a terminal cancer patient feel peaceful about their imminent demise? Scientists at NYU, in New York, have developed a technique which is straight out of the Timothy Leary playbook. They are giving dying patients a single high dose of a hallucinogenic mushroom, which takes…

What The Soul Sees

I love this story from Brian Weiss’s book ‘Same Soul Many Bodies’. A top cardiologist at Mount Sinai Hospital in Miami told Weiss how he had worked feverishly to resuscitate an elderly woman in a diabetic coma. There was little hope because of her severe condition and in the rush to help the cardiologist dropped…

Ever Hopeful

I just discovered Laura had scribbled in her copy of Pema Chodron’s When Things Fall Apart, ‘I don’t agree’, ‘I don’t agree’, at exactly the  spot where I chucked the book. It seems neither of us thought ‘Begin the journey without hope of getting ground under your feet. Begin with hopelessness’ was a good idea. Especially…

Farewell Junior

In My Last Summer this week, one of the five terminally ill patients, Junior, suddenly died. He started to bleed profusely from his cancer tumor and his pain shot up so much the hospital told him he was too ill to go out and celebrate his 49th birthday. His fearless partner Sonia ignored the advice,…

My Last Summer

Tonight I watched part 2 of the harrowing British docu-series My Last Summer about 5 terminally ill patients coming to terms with their imminent death and how their friends and loved ones are coping. It is heartbreaking to watch, especially as most  have lost nearly all of their friends since their diagnosis (worse still, one…

Talking About Dying

To my great surprise the British media is currently trying to lift the lid on what it means to have a terminal disease and face your own death.  Probably due to the huge numbers of people who are currently being diagnosed as terminally ill at midlife and younger. One of my favorite TV shows since…

Love Is All That Matters

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross helped create the US hospice movement (she was opposed to euthanasia because ‘it doesn’t allow people time to complete their unfinished business.’).  Her book Life Lessons contains what she learned by sitting at the bedside of the dying.  Here are a few of my favorite quotes – ‘Love is all that matters. Love is…

Having Hope

Laura – We are planning all these things that say I’m dying such as having the Visiting Nurse Services provide palliative care in our home and trying to decide whether to get married or not. I want to be linked to Lucie for eternity. We love each other so much.  But I’m very sad and depressed…