How to Be Sick

A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers
Foreword by
Sylvia Boorstein


216 pages, 6 x 9 inches


ISBN 9780861716265

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eBook Bundle (PDF, epub, mobi)


ISBN 9780861719266

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“Full of hopefulness and promise… this book is a perfect blend of inspiration and encouragement. Tonis engaging teaching style shares traditional Buddhist wisdom in a format that is accessible to all readers.”—The Huffington Post

Mon, 01/21/2013 - 12:35 -- wisdom

2011 Nautilus Book Award — Gold Medal in Personal Growth/Self-Help/Psychology

2011 Nautilus Book Award — Silver Medal in Memoir/Personal Journey

This life-affirming, instructive, and thoroughly inspiring book is a must-read for anyone who is—or who might one day be—sick. It can also be the perfect gift of guidance, encouragement, and uplifting inspiration to family, friends, and loved ones struggling with the many terrifying or disheartening life changes that come so close on the heels of a diagnosis of a chronic condition or life-threatening illness. Authentic and graceful, How to be Sick reminds us of our endless inner freedom, even under high degrees of suffering and pain. 

The author—who became ill while a university law professor in the prime of her career—tells the reader how she got sick and, to her and her partner’s bewilderment, stayed that way. Toni had been a longtime meditator, going on long meditation retreats and spending many hours rigorously practicing, but soon discovered that she simply could no longer engage in those difficult and taxing forms. She had to learn ways to make “being sick” the heart of her spiritual practice—and through truly learning how to be sick, she learned how, even with many physical and energetic limitations, to live a life of equanimity, compassion, and joy. And whether we ourselves are ill or not, we can learn these vital arts from Bernhard’s generous wisdom in How to Be Sick.

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