Roy's Open Road

ROY REMER

Volunteer Coordinator
Zen Hospice Project

“It's a totally radical concept, and maybe really difficult for people to understand-but [it's helpful] to practice dying when you're healthy. This is who I was yesterday, that's gone. This is who I am today.”

INTERESTS:

Non-Profit Organizations Philosophy & Religion

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Self-Reflection Transitions Values Beliefs & Faith Community Support & Encouragement Culture

FOUNDATION:

Helping People

BIOGRAPHY:

  • Says that we live in a death-denying culture, where no one wants to accept the reality of death until it "bashes them over the head."
  • He realized that this denial was unhealthy, so he decided to "befriend" death, and become comfortably with his mortality.
  • When his grandmother died, he was working for a small Buddhist publisher.
  • Seeing that Roy was having trouble with her death, some of his co-workers introduced him to the Zen Hospice Project.
  • Soon his volunteerism started to become more meaningful than his publishing work.
  • Says it was hard to give up his career and his comfortable income, but he had to leave that smooth routine to leap into the unknown.
  • He knew that if he followed the thing that was most nourishing for his soul, everything else would fall into place.
  • A big part of his practice is honoring thresholds: when one experience ends, he honors who he was before that experience, and accepts what's next to come.

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