What Death Can Teach Us – A dialogue with Frank Ostaseski

In 1987, Frank co-founded of the Zen Hospice Project, the first Buddhist hospice in America. In 2004, he created the Metta Institute to provide innovative educational programs and professional trainings that foster compassionate, mindfulness-based care.

In 2001, Frank was honored by the Dalai Lama for his years of service to the dying and their families. In 2003, he was named one of America’s 50 most innovative people in America by the AARP magazine.



I was inspired to call Frank after reading his new book The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully. This book is so beautiful, heartful, and profound. It is filled with powerful human stories and deep wisdom.

Listen to the Wisdom Heart Dialogue with Frank Ostaseski here:


Reflect on this:

  • What has dying taught you about living fully?
  • What would it mean for you to take this teaching seriously?

Share your reflections in the comments below.

Let us know who you’d like to hear on a future Wisdom Heart Dialogue. Click here.

Love & Shanti

E & D


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  • Thomas Cadwallader

    Listened to this wonderful conversation about death and the five invitations. So much to ponder. Two points stuck out for me. One was habits as a kind of reaction to life from fear to maintain the status quo. I am thinking I need to peek under my habits to see why I am doing them. The other point was vulnerability to the beauty and horror of life. I was almost dumbstruck when Frank said “horror.” If I am vulnerable, I have to learn to live with the fact that I am part of the horror. And I am part of the beauty too. I am not very good at living with beauty either.

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