A More Healing Way: Video Conversations on Disease

Several months I ago I surveyed my readers and asked:

When my book Dancing with Elephants goes on sale, I want to make you an offer so good you cannot refuse it, and you are so impressed you want to tell all your friends and family to buy the book.   Help me craft that offer.  Which of these bonuses would you like to see included in an offer to buy the book and get the following bonuses for free?

Survey Results of my Awesome Readers:

  • 92% - A More Healing Way – audio/video series - Jarem interviews other authors on facing death, disease and chronic illness
  • 80% - Access to a live, 60-minute webinar on “Mindfully Facing Life and Death” with Q&A with me
  • 69% - Audiobook read by the author
  • 68% - All the digital editions of the book (kindle, nook, ipad, pdf)
  • 60% - 30-day Dancing with Elephants Journal and Workbook

So, I decided I would create all 5 and offer them as a free Great Mindfulness Package to anyone who bought the book and emailed me (great.mindfulness.dancing@gmail.com) a picture of their receipt before March 12, 2017! I hope that makes you happy. I have spent the last 6 weeks creating that package.

Today I want to tell you about the top requested item, A More Healing Way: Video Conversations on Disease.

I set out to create a 5-part series – five conversations with five featured teachers - to mirror the five parts of the book. I decided to expand the book to include some of the best insights of each featured teacher in the book.

Picking inspiring and wise featured teachers was the easy part.  In a world of potential teachers, I’ve picked these five:

Jon Kabat-Zinn
Professor of Medicine Emeritus and
creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic and
the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society
at the University of Massachusetts Medical School
Author: Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness


Patch Adams, MD
Gesundheit Institute
Author: Gesundheit!: Bringing Good Health to You, the Medical System, and Society through Physician Service, Complementary Therapies, Humor, and Joy


Lucy Kalanithi, MD, FACP
Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine
Stanford University School of Medicine
Contributor to When Breath Becomes Air

John Paul Lederach, PhD
Professor of International Peacebuilding
University of Notre Dame
Author: Reconcile: Conflict Transformation for Ordinary Christians


Toni Bernhard, JD
Law Professor at the
University of California-Davis
Author: How To Be Sick

These people are all wise teachers, living the wisdom of the future in the present and oriented to a more healing way of living in the here and now.

The great challenge was to get these people to agree to talk to me, and be recorded on Skype video so that I could share with others.  I told them that as a person with Huntington’s disease, I am seeking out those who I hope can teach me about love, compassion, and the joy of living.  I used email and twitter to contact them.

I almost failed at this task – actually, I canceled the project because I was only able to get two of the five to commit.  A few days after I cancelled, two ofthem contacted me to say they were in after all.  Within 24 hours I reversed the decision on cancelling the project and I had all 5 committed to the project.

After each interview I felt like I was on a high.  These are wonderful, compassionate people.  But they also wise - each one challenging me to move beyond where I am and each one giving concrete practices to get there.  Jon Kabat-Zinn shares about there being "more right with you than wrong with you, no matter what is wrong with you."  Patch Adams explores how lives can be deeply transformed by diving into the ocean of gratitude. Lucy Kalanithi explores how we can be disarmed by joy, even in the midst of suffering.  John Paul Lederach reveals how to create habits of getting your daily dose of awe, and how this spirit of awe transforms the way we can be present to suffering.  Toni Bernhard explores how difficult - but completely achievable- it is to make self-compassion your default mode. Such a wise circle of teachers.

In this five-part series, you can watch interviews with mindfulness teachers, doctors and bestselling authors as they share their best tips for facing disease in a more healing way. Hosted by (me) Jarem Sawatsky, a professor with a terminal disease, these honest and engrossing conversations on facing disease offer viewers a more healing and hopeful way of facing disease. The series includes over 3.5 hours of conversations with Jon Kabat-Zinn, Patch Adams, Lucy Kalanithi, John Paul Lederach, and Toni Bernhard.

Between now and March 12, I am going to ask you to do four things

  1. BUY – and receive the Great Mindfulness Package free - including the video series described above.
  2. SHARE - with anything you think might benefit from this book and Great Mindfulness Package - for example free free to this post with anyone (email works best, but social media can work too)
  3. ENJOY the book and the great mindfulness page

I am going to ask you to help me sell as many copies in the first week as possible.  I have become convinced that this book can be healing for a lot of people. My hope is if we sell a lot of copies in one week, the visibility of the book will increase and will benefit more people.

It is difficult for an author to understand the potential and the challenges of their own work.  It is always with some fear and trembling that I have been giving advance copies of the book to Advance Readers, reviewers and to possible book endorsers. I just never know what they are going to think. There is a deep joy within me when my work seems to connect for others. Here is one exciting response I’ve received:

This is a beautiful and inspiring book. It is full of humor and wisdom about the pain of loss in our life, by a man who is living the severe loss of a debilitating disease. It is a book that we should all read so that loss be not transformed into anger or depression, but into love and radical acceptance.

-JEAN VANIER, founder of L’Arche and national bestselling author of Becoming Human


A More Healing Way
(5-part video and audio series),

Just need to tell me where to send it.

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Posted in Buddhist practice, Elephant Stories, Healing Steps, Nonviolence, Poetic Ramblings, Resilience, Uncategorized and tagged , , .

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