death

death

BY Krista Tippett June 20, 2016

"The question isn't whether we're going to have to do hard, awful things. The question is whether we have to do them alone." Unitarian-Universalist law enforcement chaplain Kate Braestrup tells the story of a police woman who embodies the both/and of love and new life, and crime and death.

BY Trent Gilliss May 25, 2016

How do we cut through distraction to nurture our best selves forward? Our executive editor shares reflections on rediscovering the glory around and within us, from the journey of an olympic runner, to the lyrical labyrinth of rap, to healing the void of loss with art and memory.

BY Caren Chesler May 23, 2016

Death and illness are rational fears, yet there are some truths we need to ignore in order to function. For people with health anxiety, a strange lump can incite a multitude of fears. A generous (sometimes humorous) window into life with hypochondria.

BY Courtney E. Martin May 20, 2016

Using a children's book on death as a scaffolding, Courtney Martin makes a case for kids teaching adults how to work through grief and death in better ways.

BY Norman Allen February 28, 2016

In the waiting room of a doctor's office, the dramas of life and death play out quietly. A reflection on the power of paying attention to the stranger, and to the burdens we all carry.

BY Lauren Small February 07, 2016

Is it possible to teach doctors how to give bad news? A writer's probing reflection on hearing — and giving — the hardest messages to receive.

BY Parker J. Palmer January 20, 2016

On a retreat at a cabin in the northern woods of Wisconsin, Parker Palmer strings together pearls of contemplation on silence and solitude. With the help of Merton and Rumi, he finds the catharsis of being forced to reckon with one's angels and demons.

BY Rachel Faith December 20, 2015

The ritual of lighting luminaria on Christmas Eve in New Mexico inspires this reflection on grief and waiting for the light.

BY Gary Nelson December 12, 2015

Familiar items are strangely comforting throughout life, much less in difficult times. A gay man discovers himself through his ongoing relationship with a Renoir painting.

BY Ananya Vajpeyi November 17, 2015

The daughter of the renowned Hindi poet Kailash Vajpeyi turns to ancient rivers and archaic rituals to find comfort in the uninterrupted thread running through her past, present, and future.

BY Lara Dotson-Renta November 01, 2015

An affirmation of presence, a victory of joy, a connection maintained: these are the things a young mother observes in her elderly next door neighbors, as a husband gently tends to his wife in her final days. A beautiful account of what love truly looks like.

BY Jane Gross November 01, 2015

Can the process of grieving go on too long? Especially when you write about it for a living? Jane Gross on her bout with understanding death's unsettled trajectory.

BY Parker J. Palmer October 14, 2015

With the visual glories of autumn, the living is hidden within the dying. A pondering about this season of paradox and the "the endless interplay of living and dying" we all must embrace.

BY Trent Gilliss October 13, 2015

From small kindnesses to a classic love song reimagined and singleness to transformation, Trent Gilliss poetically curates an intermingling of murmurations and ideas — including a remembrance of the legendary Grace Lee Boggs.

BY Catherine JF. Sietkiewicz October 10, 2015

There is no handbook for grief. With grace, kindness, and gentleness, a daughter candidly shares her experience of mourning after the unexpected loss of her father.

BY Parker J. Palmer September 23, 2015

Summer's passing and earth's decay can elicit a deepening melancholy for some. A pondering on the "paradoxical dance" of darkness and light and giving oneself over to its endless interplay — with lyrical assists from Rainier Marie Rilke and Thomas Merton.

BY Lily Percy September 10, 2015

For World Suicide Prevention Day, a story of a son's loss of his father by suicide. The writer Eric Marcus talks about family silence, learning to share his story, and discovering compassion for his father and healing for himself.

BY Katherine Hauswirth September 08, 2015

In the aftermath of her brother's untimely death, a sister contemplates life's darkness — as well as the ever-accessible, unfaltering light which illuminates the path. A call to help recover lost light for those who are in darkness, and for ourselves.

BY Omid Safi September 03, 2015

When asked how long they'd been married, Aljosie Harding named their time together down to the minute. Omid Safi marvels at the unexpected and profound love that infuses our world at any stage of living — and it's awe-inspiring power to provide hope in the face of grief.

BY Parker J. Palmer September 02, 2015

Each summer, our columnist has been making a pilgrimage to one of nature's great treasures: the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. In his twilight years, he ponders the resurrection that takes place under the most destructive circumstances and the "vast web of life in which body and spirit are one."

BY Mary Jo Bennett August 29, 2015

To be confronted with a serious illness is to be confronted with a fear of death for most of us. How do we balance hope with realism? And how do we age with grace? Drawing on Atul Gawande's book, Mary Jo Bennett highlights some ways our culture is evolving in its relationship with death.

BY Paul Singleton & III August 08, 2015

With the near-constant news of extra-judicial police killings and mass shootings, it would be easy to live in a constant state of fear. Faced with his own fragile mortality, a Buddhist contemplates our collective fear and grief. For him, meditation is not about relaxation but about awakening to life — in its wonder and in its sorrow.

BY Lauren Small May 26, 2015

Pediatric oncologists and parents alike are searching for someone to help them bear the suffering they must witness. An essay reflecting on doctors, Dante, and treating children with cancer.

BY Trent Gilliss May 02, 2015

Sometimes we buzz through our social media streams and forget to pause, connect, and read more deeply. The marvelous writer Terry Tempest Williams teaches us to do just that — all through the story of her dog.

BY Esther Cohen April 09, 2015

Some days you remember forever and ever. A picture and a poem to celebrate Haggadah possibilities during Passover.

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