How to Be Sick

How to Be Sick

A Buddhist-inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers

Book - 2018
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Simon and Schuster
A brand-new edition of the best-selling classic with added and updated practices.

In 2001, Toni Bernhard got sick and, to her and her partner’s bewilderment, stayed that way. As they faced the confusion, frustration, and despair of a life with sudden limitations—a life that was vastly different from the one they’d thought they’d have together—Toni had to learn how to be sick. In spite of her many physical and energetic restrictions (and sometimes, because of them), Toni learned how to live a life of equanimity, compassion, and joy. This book reminds us that our own inner freedom is limitless, regardless of our external circumstances.

Updated with new insights and practices hard-won from Toni’s own ongoing life experience, this is a must-read for anyone who is—or who might one day be—sick or in pain.

Publisher: Somerville, MA :, Wisdom Publications,, [2018]
Edition: Revised and updated edition
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9781614294788
Branch Call Number: 294.34442 BER
Characteristics: xxvii, 219 pages ;,23 cm.
Additional Contributors: Boorstein, Sylvia - Contributor


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Feb 13, 2019

Do you know someone who is dealing with a chronic illness or is a caregiver for someone who is? If so, you might want to recommend "How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers" by Toni Bernhard. Bernhard has been dealing with a chronic and debilitating illness since 2001 and in this book brings her experience of discovering compassion and understanding into clear and readable form. One of the best parts of the book is the final chapter in which she takes takes the various suggestions and ideas she has discussed and groups them under headings such as "suffering due to the relentlessness of physical symptoms or from the addition of a new medical problem," "blaming yourself for being sick," "receiving cursory or dismissive treatment from a doctor or other medical professional." Under each heading, she references the chapter in which a helpful technique or approach is discussed. I highly recommend this book.

Jun 14, 2018

I'm not into tradition. I don't care what foreign term you call your lists or beliefs. I don't care who you are quoting from your belief community to substantiate yourself, either. So, taking away the subjective experience and boiling down the message into a few pages of succinct paragraphs at the end of the book was all that was required for me to understand and appreciate the points.

Aug 31, 2017

This book is amazing!!! I don't think there is a person alive who cannot benefit from this book. When I saw it was endorsed by Rick Hanson, the author of Buddha's Brain. I knew I had to read it. It's an easy read and can be read just a few pages at a time or in its entirety.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at FVRL

To Top