"We can do extraordinary things when we lead with love," Barbara Becker reminds us in her debut memoir Heartwood.
Barbara Becker is a writer and interfaith minister who has dedicated over 25 years to partnering with human rights advocates around the world in pursuit of peace, spirituality, and everyday mindfulness. She has worked with the United Nations, Human Rights First, the Ms. Foundation for Women, and the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, and has participated in a delegation of Zen Peacemakers and Lakota elders in the sacred Black Hills of South Dakota. She lives in New York City with her interfaith family.
"In Heartwood, Barbara Becker inspires us to follow our curiosity
into a world that is both universal and a source of our uniqueness.
And what could be better than that?"--Gloria Steinem, bestselling
author and activist "Death fascinates and repels us. Barbara Becker
has written a gorgeous book about it, and her writing will draw in
everyone who is willing to approach the most serious topic we all
must face. Becker gives the reader empathic access to some of
life's peak moments, along with insights into life's biggest
-Jonathan Haidt, Professor, NYU-Stern School of Business, author of The Righteous Mind "Heartwood is a luminous book...Within the first few pages I knew I could trust Barbara Becker to navigate the holy land of death and grief and take me with her...I have rarely read a book that left me feeling so fundamentally blessed. Highly recommended."
--Mirabai Starr, author of Caravan of No Despair and Wild Mercy "Both tear-jerking and joyful, Heartwood reveals how an intimate conversation with loss can bring forth the 'forever' possible through love. Across time zones, generations, and cultural divides."
--Sarah Bowen, author of Spiritual Rebel: A Positively Addictive Guide to Finding Deeper Perspective and Higher Purpose "A powerful and exquisite book on being with dying and learning from loss that is written from the marrow of real experience and as well from the heart. It is a courageous exploration of grief, death, and release. This is a book that uplifts, instructs, inspires, and guides." - Roshi Joan Halifax, Abbot, Upaya Zen Center "Heartwood is wise and moving without a wasted word. Becker's luminous meditation on death and life is a gift to us all."--Dave Isay, founder of StoryCorps "Heartwood is a gem."--Dr. Denis Mukwege, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, author of forthcoming The Power of Women: Learning from Resilience to Heal Our World "Becker takes us on a poignant journey through her life in "Heartwood". She shows us the threads connecting herself to ones who passed and with each tug on a thread we learn more about love and loss, life and death. Precious stories that have the power to move your heart, this book is a true gift.--Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Love and Real Change "Becker debuts with a stirring chronicle of the events, moments, and stories that led to her reconciliation with mortality...Becker's eloquence is a salve for confronting a difficult topic...This will be a comfort for anyone contemplating their own mortality, or those in search of advice for others."--Publishers Weekly Starred Review "A graceful meditation on divine deliverance...Once firmly entrenched in our "death-shy" contemporary culture, the author is now a reassuring advocate for peace and interreligious understanding, and she views dying as an opportunity to seek enlightenment and give thanks, regardless of one's preferred spiritual path." - Kirkus
"A resource filled with wisdom and one that readers will find themselves returning to often in both good times and bad." - Shelf Awareness "An affecting and informative memoir about the lessons we can glean from life as well as death." - Library Journal