Today I’ll be talking with Dr. Christopher Kerr, CEO and Chief Medical Officer at Hospice Buffalo, the creator of the incredibly viral TED Talk, “I See Dead People: Dreams and Visions of the Dying”, and the author of a brilliant, beautiful, and incredibly important book, “Death Is But A Dream”
And that’s just what I want to talk with him about, about finding hope and meaning at life’s end, particularly at this time.
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Dr. Kerr was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and comes from a long line of physicians, of which he is now the fifth generation. He has an undergraduate degree in Psychology, a Doctorate of Medicine, a PhD in Neurobiology, and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Rochester. Dr. Kerr received numerous awards throughout training that recognized his clinical performance, as well as his success as an educator and scientist.
Dr. Kerr’s background in research has evolved from bench science towards the human experience of illness as witnessed from the bedside, specifically patient’s dreams and visions at the end of life. The results of his studies generated enormous response in the non-medical community, both nationally and internationally, through coverage that has included The New York Times, Huffington Post, The Atlantic, BBC, Scientific American and Psychology Today.
Dr. Kerr has overseen the integration and expansion of palliative care into local hospitals and developed one of the nation’s largest home-based palliative care programs, Home Connections, and Essential Care for Children. He has lectured and published on innovative program models that are designed to better align patient/family services to the complexity of needs inherent to advanced illness.
Dr. Christopher Kerr Online: Website
Key Points Discussed:
- Would you say you used to be a spiritual guy and what happened the last time you saw your dad? (02:54)
- How he ended up going to the safest place from the dying as a career (05:02)
- The worse words one can say for somebody who’s dying and how the principle of non-abandonment is no longer valued (06:48)
- How he shifted from working as a resident in cardiology to work in hospice (09:08)
- Terminal lucidity and looking at dying as a post-traumatic growth experience (11:53)
- People die how they live (16:33)
- Sleep as the common denominator of all illnesses (19:36)
- Why dying seems lonely when it’s really not (22:42)
- Bridget and how she was spiting him with the pink spiders on the wall (26:18)
- The experiences (Dream and visions) that patients have when they’re dying (28:02)
- The story of Eliza and Nathan: How we see people die and how it changes how we experience loss and grief (33:16)
- The access to data from our lives that requires emotional tone and texture to reach (38:35)
- Do you think there is less suffering than we think at the end and more peace at the end as well? (42:43)
- What can you tell us about people who’ve had miscarriages? (45:43)
- The complicated grief surrounding Coronavirus deaths and the anticipatory peace to it (46:52)
- How to reach out and connect with our loved ones during this time (49:20)
INSPIRE #1328: How to Transmute FEAR into HOPE and Turn Energy into a Powerful Positive Force!!! (Mitch Horowitz, “Secrets of Self-Mastery”)
INSPIRE #571: HOW TO FIND MIND-BLOWING HOPE & GUIDANCE THRU THE WISDOM OF AYAHUASCA! (Rachel Harris, PhD , “Listening To Ayahuasca”)
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