Thought leaders in the field of contemplative caregiving offer resilience, wisdom, and freedom for those who keep watch at the bedside.
How do we think about death? How do we think about the dying? What’s the current state of palliative and end-of-life health care, and how can we improve it? And how do we give care without becoming emotionally and spiritually depleted? In Awake at the Bedside, pioneers of palliative and end-of-life care — as well as doctors, Dharma teachers, chaplains, poets, and caregivers of all kinds — offer insights on incredibly challenging questions like these.
This book isn’t about dying. It’s about life and what life has to teach us. It’s about caring and what giving care really means. Equal parts instruction manual and spiritual testimony, it includes specific instructions and personal accounts to inspire, counsel, and teach. An indispensable resource for anyone involved in hospice work or caregiving of any kind.
About the Editors:
Koshin Paley Ellison, MFA, LMSW, DMIN, co-founded the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care, the first Buddhist organization to offer fully accredited chaplaincy training in America and the organization delivers contemplative approaches to care through education, direct service and meditation practice. Koshin is the Director the Zen Center’s Certificates in Contemplative Studies. In order to bring the work to a broader audience, he co-developed the Foundations in Buddhist Contemplative Care Training Program. He teaches in the University of Arizona Medical School’s Center for Integrative Medicine’s Integrative Medicine Fellowship. Koshin is the Academic Advisor for the Buddhist students in the Master in Pastoral Care and Counseling at NYZCCC’s education partner, New York Theological Seminary. He is the Co-Director of Contemplative Care Services for the Department of Integrative Medicine, and serves as the Chaplaincy Supervisor for the Pain and Palliative Care Department at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center where he also serves on the Medical Ethics Committee.
Koshin is a dynamic, original, and visionary leader and teacher. His public programs have introduced thousands to the practices of mindful and compassionate care of the living and dying. 30,000 people listen to his podcasts each year. His groundbreaking work has been widely featured in the media, including the PBS Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, and in numerous print publications such as the New York Times and Los Angeles Times. He is the co-author of the chapter “Rituals and Resilience,” in the book, Creating Spiritual and Psychological Resilience, Routledge, 2009. He also authored the chapter “The Jeweled Net: What Dogen and the Avatamsaka Sutra Can Offer Us as Spiritual Caregivers,” in the book The Arts of Contemplative Care: Pioneering Voices in Buddhist Chaplaincy and Pastoral Work, Wisdom Publications, 2012. He is a Senior Zen Buddhist Monk, Dharma Teacher and student, ACPE Supervisor and Jungian psychotherapist.
Matt Weingast, MFA began his first experiences with meditation when he was twenty. After serving in the Peace Corps in Ghana, Matt traveled for a few years in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Thailand, and India. He studied and taught at UMass-Amherst, where he received his MFA in Creative Writing. He currently lives at Barre Center for Buddhist Studies, where he continues to work, study, and practice. After taking care of a dear friend at the end of his life, Matt experienced the depth of connection between meditation practice and caregiving.