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Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

  • Watching a peaceful death of a human being reminds us of a falling star; one of the million lights in a vast sky that flares up for a brief moment only to disappear into the endless night forever.

  • Guilt is perhaps the most painful companion of death.

  • ... dying nowadays is more gruesome in many ways, namely, more lonely, mechanical, and dehumanized; at times it is even difficult to determine technically when the time of death has occurred.

  • Is war perhaps nothing else but a need to face death, to conquer and master it, to come out of it alive — a peculiar form of denial of our own mortality?

  • Old age is not synonymous with being 'glad to die.'

  • For those who seek to understand it, death is a highly creative force. The highest spiritual values of life can originate from the thought and study of death.

  • It is not the end of the physical body that should worry us. Rather, our concern must be to live while we're alive — to release our inner selves from the spiritual death that comes with living behind a façade designed to conform to external definitions of who and what we are.

  • It is the denial of death that is partially responsible for people living empty, purposeless lives; for when you live as if you'll live forever, it becomes too easy to postpone the things you know that you must do. You live your life in preparation for tomorrow or in remembrance of yesterday, and meanwhile, each today is lost.

  • Death is the final stage of growth in this life. There is no total death. Only the body dies. The self or spirit, or whatever you may wish to label it, is eternal.

  • Learn to get in touch with silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences; all events are blessings given to us to learn from.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross,
    • speech ()
  • Death is simply a shedding of the physical body, like the butterfly coming out of a cocoon. ... It's like putting away your winter coat when spring comes.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross,
    • in Brad Steiger, The World Beyond Death ()
  • Death is the great transition.

  • It's only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth — and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up — that we will begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross,
    • in Parade ()
  • I once considered writing a book called I'm not OK and you're not OK, and that's OK.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross,
    • "Soul Gifts in Disguise," in Richard Carlson and Benjamin Shield, eds., Handbook for the Soul ()
  • Should you shield the canyons from the windstorms, you would never see the beauty of their carvings.

  • If you are ready for mystical experiences, you have them.

  • Even though I had a good income from my lectures, no one would give me a loan. The insanity almost drove me to sympathize with the feminist movement.

  • There is no problem that is not actually a gift.

  • I'm going to dance in all the galaxies.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross,
    • in The Los Angeles Times ()
  • Our only purpose in life is growth.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • There are dreams of love, life, and adventure in all of us. But we are also sadly filled with reasons why we shouldn’t try. These reasons seem to protect us, but in truth they imprison us. They hold life at a distance. Life will be over sooner than we think. If we have bikes to ride and people to love, now is the time.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • I believe that we are solely responsible for our choices, and we have to accept the consequences of every deed, word, and thought throughout our lifetime.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • Real love doesn't die. It's the physical body that dies. Genuine, authentic love has no expectations whatsoever; it doesn't even need the physical presence of a person. ... Even when he is dead and buried that part of you that loves the person will always live.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • It is difficult to accept death in this society because it is unfamiliar. In spite of the fact that it happens all the time, we never see it ...

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • When life puts you through a tumbler, it's your choice whether you come out polished or crushed.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • The ultimate lesson all of us have to learn is unconditional love, which includes not only others but ourselves as well.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
  • I've told my children that when I die, to release balloons in the sky to celebrate that I graduated. For me, death is a graduation.

    • Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Swiss-born U.S. psychiatrist, thanatologist, writer

(1926 - 2004)