TED Radio Hour- Rethinking Death

TED speakers contemplate the end of life with wisdom and humor.

On the NPR TED Radio Hour Sunday 28th of February 6pm

It's hard to accept that everyone eventually dies. How can we better understand death as a part of life? In this episode, TED speakers contemplate the end of life with wisdom and humor. 

Artist Candy Chang turned an abandoned house into a giant chalkboard with a provocative prompt: "Before I die I want to ____." Her neighbors' answers grew into a kind of monument to the aspirations of the community.

Journalist Amanda Bennett explains why having hope while watching a loved one die shouldn't warrant a diagnosis of "denial." She tells her story about having hope -- no matter what -- after her husband was diagnosed with kidney cancer. She calls for a more heroic narrative for death to match the ones we have in life.

Can we commit our bodies to a cleaner, greener Earth, even after death? Jae Rhim says it's possible by using a special burial suit seeded with pollution-gobbling mushrooms. 

As an emergency medical technician, Matthew O'Reilly was used to telling a white lie when patients asked if they were dying. O'Reilly describes what happened on one emergency call, when he decided to tell the truth. 

At the end of our lives, what do we most wish for? BJ Miller is a palliative care physician who thinks about how to create a dignified, graceful end of life for his patients.