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Ask Doctor Death
51 minutes | May 12, 2022
EP 28: What Dying Children Know
When a child is terminally ill, parents agonize over how to tell the child about their prognosis, and how to decide when to stop treatment when a cure is no longer possible. Their anguish is fueled by a range of ethical, emotional and spiritual dilemmas, and there is never an easy or an obvious answer. In this episode, we talk with Dr. Steinhorn, an academic pediatrician who practices intensive care and hospice medicine for children. He led the Judith Nan Joy Integrative Medicine Research Initiative at Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago from 2002-2010 and founded palliative care programs at major children’s hospitals. He is currently developing children’s hospice programs in Washington, DC and San Diego, California. Dr. Steinhorn has additional training in energy medicine, yoga, meditation, and shamanism, studying with teachers from the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, the Four Winds Society, and Dr. Carl Greer, and has brought shamanic healing approaches to his critical care practice in children’s hospitals across the country. LINKS: To learn more about Dr. Steinhorn's work, click HERE. Watch Dr. Steinhorn and his collaborator Jana Din demonstrate their transpersonal medicine approach in this nationally broadcast television segment titled "Shamans in the ICU." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBQ7QKmHwAY
55 minutes | Apr 9, 2022
EP 27: What Happens When we DON'T Die?
Since the beginning of human thought, we've pondered the great metaphysical question, "What happens when we die?" But now, thanks to modern medical technology, a new question has emerged that has practical, down-to-earth implications... "What happens when we don't die?" In today's episode, Dr. Karen Wyatt and Dr. Terri Daniel explore an aspect of end-of-life care that is not often discussed, and may even be a bit difficult to listen to. Because today we're talking about about the horrors of life extension, and we give some powerful examples of what happens when we're kept alive far past the point when the body is ready to die a natural death. It's an uncomfortable topic, because it addresses scenarios and outcomes that could potentially apply to any of us. RELATED LINKS: . Oregon Death with Dignity Q&A. Dementia Provision for Advance Directives. End-of-Life University podcast. The Conference on Death, Grief and BeliefRELATED STATISTICS: . The population of Americans 65 and older is projected to grow from 58 million in 2021 to 88 million by 2050 . In 1901, only 50 percent of white females survived to the age of 60 years, and only about 5 percent of those survived to the age of 90. By contrast, in In 2004, about 90 percent of white females survived to the age of 60, and more than 25 percent survived to the age of 90. . While older adults comprise just 12% of the population, they make up approximately 18% of suicides. men ages 85 and older having the highest rate of any group in the country   https://www.alz.org/media/Documents/alzheimers-facts-and-figures.pdfhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK51841/#:~:text=Only%204.5%20percent%20(about%201.5,million)%20live%20in%20the%20community. https://www.ncoa.org/article/suicide-and-older-adults-what-you-should-know
79 minutes | Mar 31, 2022
EP: 26 - To Infinity and Beyond - with Peter Panagore, MDiv
Rev. Peter Panagore has been pronouced dead twice; once after freezing to death while ice climbing, and again, years later, after a heart attack. Both times he returned with memories of a detailed out-of-body journey. Peter now hosts Not Church: Mysticism. No Doctrine. No Dogmaon his YouTube Channel, where he deconstructs The Bible in light of his near-death experiences.In this episoide, Peter describes -- in great detail -- the exact process of dying, which in itself is quite stunning. But beyond that, he was also able to remember what he perceived and felt in the non-physical state commonly known as death. A graduate of Yale Divinity School with a focus on western mysticism, Peter is a two-time Near-death Experiencer and International Audible best-selling author of Heaven Is Beautiful: How Dying Taught Me That Death Is Just the Beginning, His first best-seller, Two Minutes for God: Quick Fixes for the Spirit, is drawn from among the seventeen hundred inspirational stories of hope he wrote and told on his daily two-minute TV/FM spot for 15 years, broadcast on two NBC-TV stations in New England reaching 30 million views each year. His Yale master’s degree focused on The Classics of Western Mysticism, and he also holds a BAin English Literature from the University of Massachusetts. Visit Peter's website:https://www.peterpanagore.love/Learn about THE CONFERENCE ON DEATH, GRIEF AND BELIEFhttp:www.deathgriefandbelief.com
68 minutes | Mar 19, 2022
EP 23: Separating Myth From Meaning - With Joshua Bowen, PhD
Joshua Bowen PhD graduated from Johns Hopkins University in 2017 with a Ph.D. in Assyriology and a minor in Hebrew Bible, and specializes in the Sumerian, Akkadian, and Hebrew languages. In this interview, he educates us about the ancient texts that pre-date the Hebrew bible and provided the myths and stories upon which biblical narratives were built. We talk specifically about the Exodus story, and the methods used by scholars to determine what is historically accurate and what is not. For anybody interested in religious history, or even in religious devotion, this conversation can help you separate the myth from the meaning. As well as his Ph.D., Josh holds a B.S. in Religion from Liberty University, a Th.M. in the Old Testament from Capital Bible Seminary, and a M.A. in Near Eastern Studies from the Johns Hopkins University. He has published four books, including the best-selling The Atheist Handbook to the Old Testament, Volume I, Did the Old Testament Endorse Slavery?, Learning to Pray in a Dead Language, and Learn to Read Ancient Sumerian: An Introduction for Complete Beginners (co-authored with his wife, Megan Lewis). He also has two books forthcoming (2022): The Atheist Handbook to the Old Testament, Volume II, and Learn to Read Ancient Sumerian, Volume II.. Check out Joshua's YouTube channel HERE . Read Joshua's book, THE ATHEIST HANDBOOK TO THE OLD TESTAMENT(or listen to the audio book).
49 minutes | Mar 18, 2022
EP 25: Leaving Religion: A Step-by-Step Guide with Clint Heacock PhD
Dr. Clint Heacock gives us a sneak peek at the the presentation he'll be giving at our 2022 CONFERENCE ON DEATH GRIEF AND BELIEF, in which he will share a practical roadmap for the deconstruction journey.This information is relevant -- and critical -- for a growing segment of our population. In Pew Research Center surveys conducted in 2018 and 2019, 65% of American adults described themselves as Christians, down 12 points over the past decade. Similarly, the number of people who identify as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular,” has increased by 9% since 2009. Clint is a former evangelical pastor and bible college teacher. He holds a PhD in preaching and biblical studies from the University of Chester in the UK. Although he grew up in a fundamentalist Christian environment, he has since deconstructed his former faith and walked away from Christianity altogether. Since leaving evangelicalism he has been the host of The MindShift Podcast. The aim of the show is to educate people on the dangers of the Christian Right, dominion theology, destructive cults, and religious trauma syndrome--and help reconstruct their lives, post-religion. You can find Clint in all the usual places: Website: mindshiftpodcast.co.ukOn Twitter: @MindShift2018On Facebook: The Mindshift Podcast Group
59 minutes | Mar 6, 2022
EP. 24: Spiritual But Not Religious - with Dr. Terri Daniel
If you identify as “spiritual but not religious,” you are not alone. Do you know there’s now an acronym for that? It’s called S.B.N.R., and it’s a new buzzword that signals a growing trendIn this audio excerpt from the 2022 Symposium on Death and Bereavement Studies, Dr. Terri Daniel explains what it means to be “Spiritual But Not Religious." As more and more Americans relinquish specific religious identities , the movement has earned its own acronym… SBNR. Along with the designation of SBNR, two additional categories have emerged known as “none” (no particular religious affiliation) and ”done” (no longer affiliated). The rise of “Nones, Dones and SBNRs” (N/D/SBNR) in America’s spiritual landscape is a source of heated debate in many theological circles, and as one might expect, opinions are often divided along party lines. Conventional religious communities think it’s unacceptable to “cherry pick” spiritual ideas and cobble together a personal theology. But on the other side of the aisle, progressive thinkers can’t imagine relating to the divine any other way. As an example of two vastly different views from noted theologians, Harvard Divinity professor Harvey Cox observes that “people are drawn more to the experiential than to the doctrinal elements of religion.” And in stark contrast, UCC minister Rev. Lillian Daniel disdainfully refers to SBNR theology as a “cheap god of self-satisfaction.”  Read more here: https://deathgriefandbelief.com/spiritual-but-not-religious/Learn about our CONFERENCE ON DEATH, GRIEF AND BELIEF: http:www.deathgriefandbelief.com
73 minutes | Feb 11, 2022
EP 22: The Thinking Atheist - with Seth Andrews
Meet Seth Andrews, a former Christian broadcaster and believer of 30 years who escaped the bonds of fundamentalism to become one of the leading voices for atheism and free thought. His podcast The Thinking Atheist, is one of the most popular atheist communities on the internet, offering a relaxed environment and a rage-free challenge to the religious beliefs that defined his youth. Firmy rooted in his faith (and with a perfect radio voice), Seth hosted a show on Christian radio from 1990 to 2000. But a series of personal and political events triggered his doubts about Christian doctrine, and in 2004, after watching a video of atheist Christopher Hitchens debating Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Seth decided to leave his religion. Finding no community of other atheists in his area, he decided to build an atheist community online. He created a website and Facebook page, both called The Thinking Atheist, to connect with other non-believers online. Find Seth here: TwitterThe Thinking AtheistFacebookSeth's new book! Seth will be a keynote speaker at our 2022 CONFERENCE ON DEATH, GRIEF AND BELIEF
58 minutes | Feb 5, 2022
EP 21: Near-Death Experiences: A Feedback Loop of Cultural Influence - with Dr. Gregory Shushan
This episode will introduce you to the most in-depth research available to date on NDEs throughout history and across cultures... with some fascinating information about how those accounts have influenced religoius beliefs and cultural practices over time.Our guest Gregory Shushan PhD is the leading authority on near-death experiences in historical reports. He points out, among other things, that stories of NDEs over thousands of years have contributed to the establishment of religious beliefs, and conversely, those beliefs also influence what we experience in our NDEs. Gregory is a research fellow of the Parapsychology Foundation, and was formerly Perrott-Warrick Researcher at University of Oxford's Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion; Scholar-in Residence at the Centro Incontri Umani (The Cross Cultural Centre), Ascona, Switzerland; and Honorary Research Fellow at the Religious Experience Research Centre, University of Wales Trinity Saint David. He has lectured at universities in the UK, Ireland, and Switzerland and has given numerous talks on his research in nine countries, and has appeared on the History Channel. GREGORY'S WEBSITES: Article on how near-death experiences inform afterlife beliefsGregoryShushan.comNew book! The Next World: Extraordinary Experiences of the AfterlifeMEET GREGORY AT THE 2022 CONFERENCE ON DEATH, GRIEF AND BELIEF!www.deathgriefandbelief.com
58 minutes | Feb 2, 2022
BONUS EPISODE - Why We're So Interested in Death
This is a special bonus episode where Dr. Karen and Dr. Terri interview each other .We decided it was time to do some self-disclosure so that our listeners could learn more about the unique experiences that inspired us to pursue careers in end-of-life care. If you've ever wondered what would make someone want to spend their time in the presence of death and grief, you'll find a lot of answers in this episode. Our backstories are very different, but come from a similar source... an instinct to process our own losses through witnessing and supporting the grief of others. And a lifelong interest in the journey of the soul. RELATED LINKS: Karen's websiteTerri's websiteThe Conference on Death, Grief and Belief
66 minutes | Jan 12, 2022
EP 20: Thank God I'm Atheist - with Dan Beecher
Dan is one half of the brilliantly funny team that hosts the THANK GOD I'M ATHEIST podcast, which recently marked its 500th episode! Co-host Frank Feldman wasn't available for the interview unfortunately, but Dan did a fantastic job of educating us about all things ExMo (Ex-Mormon), and the absurdities of bibical literalism, blind allegiance to faith doctrines and the "unapologetically cheesy" videos used by Mormons to convert people via Facebook. Both Frank and Dan grew up as Mormon kids in Salt Lake City, but fled the cult-like environment as soon as they were old enough to use their critical thinking skills. Their podcast tackles the issues of the day and recasts them in an Atheist light, sharing humorous and entertaining perspectives on politics, current events, and all things religious or otherwise.And.... Frank and Dan will be keynote speakers at our upcoming CONFERENCE ON DEATH, GRIEF AND BELIEF!(APOLOGIES FOR SOME ROUGH SPOTS IN THE AUDIO! )
57 minutes | Nov 27, 2021
EP19: Ultra Orthodox
Today Dr. Death speaks with Pesach Eisen, MCH-LP, a psychotherapist and researcher focusing primarily on the intersection of religious disaffiliation and mental health. He was raised in an ultra-Orthodox Hasidic Jewish faith community, from which he departed during his 20s. In his current role at a non-profit organization called Footsteps, he offers individual and group psychotherapy to those who have left or are contemplating leaving Orthodox Jewish communities. Both personally and professionally, he has wrestled with themes such as dignity, faith, humanity, identity, loss, meaning, morality, mortality, religion, spirituality, trauma, values, death, grief, and belief. Pesach holds a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology and neuroscience, as well as a Master of Arts degree in mental health counseling.Our interview covers a lot of fascinating topics, including: Do we really have a choice about our inherited religion if we're never taught to develop critical thinking skills or inner resources? Can grief be managed by customs and traditions rather than allowing it to follow its natural trajectory toward healing? Do the benefits of living in a supportive community outweigh the cost of suppressing our authentic self? Films about Orthodox Judaism: ONE OF USTREMBLING BEFORE G-DUNORTHODOXSHTISEL Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/askdoctordeath?fan_landing=true)
23 minutes | Jun 9, 2021
EP 18: In the Realm of Death and Dreaming
Today we are delighted to be speaking with Johanna Lunn, director of the film In the Realm of Death & Dreaming, which is the first of four documentaries in a series entitled When You Die. In the film, Johanna asks the big question... Does consciousness continue after death, or is it lights out? Johanna guides viewers on a personal journey to find answers by exploring stories of near death experiences, deathbed visions and mystical journeys. She also speaks with leading clinicians and researchers who have spent their careers studying these experiences and the nature of consciousness. The documentary features: Dean Radin, PhD, Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences; Ann Marie Chiasson, MD, School of Integrative Medicine, U. of AZ; Anthony Bossis, PhD, NYU Medical Centre psilocybin trials; Penny Sartori, PhD author of The Transformative Power of Near Death Experiences; Peter Fenwick, MD, Neuropsychologist and author of The Art of Dying; Andrew Holecek, author of Preparing to Die; David Maginley, author Beyond Surviving, and others. Johanna is an award-winning filmmaker who has worked in film and television for more than 35 years. In that time, she has helped start up a PBS station in Colorado; created a ground-breaking children’s film festival in Canada; and was Artistic Director of the Atlantic Film Festival. She was also head of CTV’s Atlantic Canadian Development Office; launched specialty channel IFC Canada; produced and directed over 150 hours of award-winning television; and directed five documentary films, one of which won Best Documentary in its class at Hot Docs International Documentary Film Festival for Forgiveness: Stories for Our Time. Watch the trailer for In the Realm of Death & Dreaming HERE. Learn more about The Afterlife Conference HERE SUBSCRIBE to our newsletter
55 minutes | May 10, 2021
EP 17: A Jewish Chaplain's Perspective
We've had many conversations here on Ask Doctor Death about a variety of religious views, but have rarely touched on Jewish beliefs and practices around death, dying and bereavement. In this episode, we are honored to present Rabbi Sarah Rensin, a hospice chaplain with a very progressive perspective on Judaism. Rabbi Sarah was ordained at the Academy for Jewish Religion California in 2015. After ordination, she used her background in fine art and teaching to create a dynamic Jewish education curriculum at the Jewish Day School in Bellevue Washington. During her years working at JDS she continued her education and became certified as a clinical chaplain. She worked as a rabbi and chaplain at Evergreen Hospice in Washington, and was instrumental in creating programs for spiritual care support for hospital clinicians during the Covid-19 pandemic. In late 2020 Rabbi Sarah moved to Oregon, where she currently works for Signature Hospice.
48 minutes | May 1, 2021
EP 16: Final Exit
Today's guest is Rev. Kevin Bradley, who serves on the board of the Final Exit Network, an organization that supports the human right to a death with dignity. The Final Exit Network (FEN) believes that mentally competent adults who suffer from a terminal illness, intractable physical pain, chronic or progressive physical disabilities, or who face loss of autonomy and selfhood through dementia, have a basic human right to choose to end their lives when they judge their quality of life to be unacceptable.Kevin acts as a spiritual counselor and "exit guide" for FEN's clients, and in our interview he will describe what these roles entail and the variety of spiritual issues he encounters in his work.Kevin has a Master of Divinity degree from Brite Divinity School, completed an extended post-graduate residency at the VA hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and is ordained in the United Church of Christ. Prior to joining FEN, Kevin testified in the Minnesota Senate in support of medical aid in dying and co-founded Interfaith Clergy for End-of-Life Options. He has served as a hospital and hospice chaplain and is currently a professional writer, speaker, and holistic stress management counselor.
56 minutes | Mar 9, 2021
EP 15: Healing the Trauma of Hellfire Indoctrination
In this special episode, Dr. Daniel talks with Andrew Jasko M.Div (MA Counseling Psychology in progress). Andrew was a Princeton Seminary educated minister and missionary before he left his religion because of the severe psychological trauma he experienced as a result of toxic beliefs. He initially rejected religion and spirituality entirely, but then had an unexpected awakening to mystical experiences through psychedelics, meditation and other practices. Unlike many "deconstructed" Christians, Andrew ultimately found a way to embrace non-physical planes of consciousness without wrapping them in a religious context. Our conversation covers a lot of ground, from religious trauma syndrome and childhood hell indoctrination to the use of psychedelics to assist individuals in releasing oppressive, fear-based religious ideas and reclaiming a healthy, authentic connection with spirituality. LINKS REFERENCED IN THE INTERVIEWAndrew Jasko's website: www.LifeAfterDogma. orgBook a Discovery Session with Andrew to learn about coaching: https://innerfreedomsession.as.me/ The Conference on Religious Traumahttps://pheedloop.com/CORT/site/ The Sinners Prayer for Grief Recovery?! https://www.griefshare.org/healing/godRecommended books on religious trauma:Leaving the FoldBreaking Their WillGrief and God: When Religion Does More Harm Than Healing Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/askdoctordeath?fan_landing=true)
79 minutes | Oct 19, 2020
EP 14: The Weirdest Afterlife Ever
This episode includes profanity and religion-bashing. If these things offend you, listen at your own risk. In this episode, Doctor Death talks with three incredibly funny and brilliant ex-Mormons known in the podcast world as Uncle Dan, Uncle Doug and Uncle Mark... The How-to-Heretics . It's a great conversation in which we explore religious belief in general (and the lack thereof), and Mormon cosmology in particular, with its super-weird afterlife scenario. https://howtoheretic.com/abouthttps://howtoheretic.com/podcastInterested in topics related to end-of-life, death care, near-death experience and related afterlife studies? Subscribe to our newsletter HERE.
56 minutes | Oct 11, 2020
EP 13: Death and Religious Trauma Syndrome - with Dr. Clint Heacock - WARNING... Politics and Religion Being Discussed!
WARNING! If you aren't comfortable with conversations about religion or politics, this episode talks about both and how they are entwined in today's America. We also talk about the toxic nature of Judeo-Christian theology and images of God, so if these topics (and a little profanity) make you uncomfortable, we respectfully suggest that you don't listen to this episode. Or if you do, listen at your own risk.Our guest today is Dr. Clint Heacock, a former Christian, former pastor and former bible college teacher who talks about his childhood in an evangelical cult and his eventual escape from it. He produces The Mindshift Podcast, which focuses on deconstructing views of God, cults and religion. In terms of end-of-life care, hospice work and spiritual care for the dying, these issues are extremely important because many of our patients and counseling clients are struggling with theological notions of suffering, biblical edicts about "sinful grief," and the cruelty of proselytizing to someone on their deathbed. If you are questioning your inherited religious beliefs and practices, then Dr. Heacock is someone you'll want to know. Enjoy the episode!
64 minutes | Aug 10, 2020
EP 12: Death as a Rite of Passage - with Shamanic Practitioner Kitty Edwards
Kitty Edwards, MA is the executive director of The Living & Dying Consciously Project. She is an Ayni Energy practitioner who helps those confronted by death find the courage to release their fears, and a graduate of Sandra Ingerman’s Core Shamanism and the Light Body School of The Four Winds Society. She is the co-founder of the No Regrets Project and Conversations on Death in Boulder, Colorado. Preparing for death as a rite of passage requires courage and creativity. In this episode, Kitty talks about how to develop personal death awareness rituals based on the wisdom of ancient traditions as well as current research in the field. This work can expand our understanding of the psychological and emotional closure needed in the dying process, and. enable family members, caretakers, medical and hospice staff, grief counselors, and chaplains to more actively support the dying. Find Kitty's guidebook -- Conscious Transitions - Living with Dying -- HERE.
51 minutes | Aug 2, 2020
EP 11: Ancestral Medicine: Rituals for Personal and Family Healing - with Daniel Foor PhD
Daniel is a teacher and practitioner whose training as a doctor of psychology and licensed marriage and family therapist informs his work with earth-honoring traditions such as European pagan paths, Native American ways, Mongolian shamanism, and West African Ifá/Òrìṣà traditions. Since 2005 he’s guided hundreds of ancestor trainings, rituals, and talks throughout the world. Daniel has trained with teachers of Mahayana Buddhism, Islamic Sufism, and diverse indigenous paths, including the remnant and returning traditions of his older English, Irish, and German ancestors. As well as studying the culture and languages of the Czech Republic, Mexico, Ecuador, Egypt, Morocco, and Nigeria. In this episode, he talks with us about calling on our ancestors to assist in our spiritual work, and how to identify the "troubled dead" who are not yet ancestors. We also discuss racism, cultural amnesia and cultural appropriation. You can find Daniel's book, Ancestral Medicine: Rituals for Personal and Family Healing HERE. For information about his classes and workshops, visit https://ancestralmedicine.org/
40 minutes | Jun 12, 2020
EP 10: Facing Death as a Young Adult: A Study in Conscious Dying with Jeff Black MD
Jeff Black. MD, MDiv, CAS is a psychiatrist who also happens to be a shamanic practitioner. In addition to his traditional medical and chaplaincy training, he studied energy medicine with native healers from South America and through The Four Winds Society, and is also a Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist. In this episode, Jeff shares the story of two brothers he treated, ages 19 and 21, who both have Huntington's disease. He describes how he worked with the family through shamanic journeying and other spiritual support processes to face illness and death with hearts and minds wide open. For more information on Jeff's work with death and dying, visit The Living and Dying Consciously Project.
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