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Publisher's Summary

Noted psychotherapist Francis Weller provides an essential guide for navigating the deep waters of sorrow and loss in this lyrical yet practical handbook for mastering the art of grieving. Describing how Western patterns of amnesia and anesthesia affect our capacity to cope with personal and collective sorrows, Weller reveals the new vitality we may encounter when we welcome, rather than fear, the pain of loss. Through moving personal stories, poetry, and insightful reflections, he leads us into the central energy of sorrow and to the profound healing and heightened communion with each other and our planet that reside alongside it.

The Wild Edge of Sorrow explains that grief has always been communal and illustrates how we need the healing touch of others, an atmosphere of compassion, and the comfort of ritual in order to fully metabolize our grief. Weller describes how we often hide our pain from the world, wrapping it in a secret mantle of shame. This causes sorrow to linger unexpressed in our bodies, weighing us down and pulling us into the territory of depression and death. We have come to fear grief and feel too alone to face an encounter with the powerful energies of sorrow.

Those who work with people in grief, who have experienced the loss of a loved one, who mourn the ongoing destruction of our planet, or who suffer the accumulated traumas of a lifetime will appreciate the discussion of obstacles to successful grief work such as privatized pain, lack of communal rituals, a pervasive feeling of fear, and a culturally restrictive range of emotion. Weller highlights the intimate bond between grief and gratitude, sorrow and intimacy. In addition to showing us that the greatest gifts are often hidden in the things we avoid, he offers powerful tools and rituals and a list of resources to help us transform grief into a force that allows us to live and love more fully.

©2015 Francis Weller (P)2016 Random House Audio

What listeners say about The Wild Edge of Sorrow

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Help with grief

I have been feeling grief in many areas of my life and this book helped me understand the multi-faceted grief experience. I feel grief about our earth, our ancestors and in my present situation of a recent loss of my dad and upcoming loss of my mom. As I grew to understand the grief experience in a deeper way through this book, it helped me with perspective and how to view grief in a way that honors it and me. If you are grieving, this book might be one to consider reading.

6 people found this helpful

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great book, but generically read

really appreciated the point of view and the information, but would have preferred if the author had read it himself, rather than hiring a pro. It loses some of the feeling of the book because it is read in such a generic way

5 people found this helpful

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An Essential Book of Our Time

I found this book to be both nurturing, and a diagnosis of our culture that I feel I have been chasing for decades. It comes from a place of goodness and respect. I want to share it with friends and family, though they may not be interested. In gratitude.

3 people found this helpful

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Grief for Dummies

FIRST CLASS!!
Francis blends all of my favorites:
Malidoma Some, Doug von Koss, Robert Moore, Robert Bly, Martin Shaw John Lee, Miguel Rivera, Martin Prechtel, Alice Miller, Carl Gustav Jung, Danny Deardorf, Jay Lemming, Marcus Wise, David Whetstone, Thomas Smith, & Tim Young into a multicolored grief essay! 🌈
Long life
Honey in the heart
No evil
Thirteen thank yous

7 people found this helpful

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Redundant towards end

Overall great book but material gets quite redundant during the last hour. The reader has a strange cadence so the words don’t match his tone of voice. At times his voice makes the content sound cheesy and irritating. Especially when the author is describing in too much detail the rituals- it feels those events should be kept private and sacred. And this guys voice is like an adult speaking to a child. I suggest getting this book in print.

2 people found this helpful

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  • MJ
  • 02-16-20

Nothing else like it

There is no other book quite like The Wild Edge of Sorrow. Rather than being another 'how to'/grieve-by-numbers manual, this work explores the vast terrain of grief, loss, and sorrow as a vital/essential part of the human experience. The crown jewel is the chapter on the Five Gates of Grief, which are not stages of grief but the five primary doors through which we encounter grief and sorrow in our lives, most of which are not well understood or even acknowledged in our culture. This is a work of great depth, compassion, and insight, and I suspect it will be the catalyst for much inner work among its readers...it certainly has been for me. Highly recommended for anyone who has struggled with a sense of sorrow/loss (of any kind) and is seeking psychological/spiritual healing.

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Beautiful, poetic and soothing book from start to finish!

This is my go-to book for guidance, encouragement and normalization on how to allow and express the natural occurrence of grief. Francis Weller speaks from experience and service. He does a masterful job of helping us come to welcome, accept, embrace, integrate and use grief as a means of returning to the wholeness this world so desperately needs.

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Beautiful

I'm in awe of the beauty of this book and how it helped me find the start of my apprenticeship with grief. Highly recommend it for someone experiencing or witnessing someone experiencing a loss and grief.

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Wonderful

Amazing book!! I recommend it to anyone! We as a society need to normalize the things we are instinctively supposed to do, like grieve.

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Wonderful resource

I found this book extremely enlightening and helpful. Will definitely go back to as I work with my sorrow. The narration was very nice in tone and tempo.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-20-18

Wonderful

A classic book. One to refer to again and again. I quite liked the narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • p j mcgee
  • 05-23-21

lack rituals detail

would have liked more detail on the specifics of the rituals rather than listening to vague accounts of a ritual before diving into the tremendous benefits that was gained from it. There was a few good examples told just not enough more my liking. Definitely worth a read as very interesting subject.

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  • Denise
  • 09-03-20

Interesting and interactive

A great introduction to useful psychology and techniques. Leads to delving deeper afterwards. The whistled letter S by the narrator was irritating.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-12-20

Beautifully written

In the midst of grief this book has comforted and welcomed release. A beautiful listen.

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  • Noel Hunwick
  • 07-21-19

powerful and useful

enlightened approaches to different forms of grief. some elements of grief ritual may feel somewhat alien to some, but the overarching messaging and normalisation of grief that can sometimes feel taboo in our society are powerful indeed.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-29-21

Intense valuable resonating knowledge

Thorough complex knowledge. Such a valuable listen. One line sentences would completely resonate and connect with my own personal journey. Will listen to it again and have already recommended this book to others in their own journey of recovery.

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  • Lauren
  • 10-17-19

sensational

highly recommended, its certianly challenged my thinking in a positive and thoughtful way. loved it