Some recommended reading from the OSHO Sammasati ‘library’ with comments from Maneesha and/or Amazon reviews. Osho books are shown at the beginning.

Mourning and grief

Please feel free to add your recommendations including what you particularly appreciate about the book in the Comments section at the end of this page.

A Grief Observed

CS Lewis

NY: Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, 1976


A reader’s review that appears on (M. Todd Hall) states: “Lewis’ book (journal, really) captures the feeling of those in grief, there is no doubt about that. It’s not difficult to read, it doesn’t contain long arguments or technical language. The content is hard for those in the throes of grief. And yet it is somehow comforting to know that you’re not alone, the feelings that you feel aren’t the signs of insanity. I remember several times thinking I was going insane, that I’d finally lost it…only to read those exact thoughts from Lewis’ journal.

“… For those who’ve lost, this book is a difficult and yet rewarding…. You make a journey that those who haven’t made cannot speak of, and you can find comfort in the experience of those who travel with you. Lewis attempts to coldly analyze his grief, and in the end he cannot. He simply expresses his grief without even attempting to gloss over it. The information you can glean from this book… is immeasurable.”

Buy the book on Amazon: A Grief Observed

Getting Back to Life when Grief won’t heal

Dr. Phyllis Kosminsky


Are you finding it hard to get over the loss of a loved one?
Does it seem like you’ll never move on with your life?
Do you feel that you’re stuck in the grieving process?

Dr. Phyllis Kosminsky understands what you’re going through. Having helped hundreds of people deal with their grief and rebuild their lives, she knows that moving beyond grief is often difficult. You may be experiencing complicated mourning, the feeling of being “stuck” in your sorrow, frustration, and unresolved issues.

In her book, Getting Back to Life When Grief Won’t Heal, you’ll find a path through your grief when you read the intimate stories of people who managed to do the same. You’ll find real inspiration, invaluable insight, and deeply felt advice. You’ll learn that, yes, there is hope. And, with time, you can let go of the overwhelming sense of loss . . . and embrace the life you were truly meant to live.

Levels of Life

Julian Barnes

(from the back of the book) Julian Barnes’s new book is about ballooning, photography, love and grief; about putting two things, and two people, together, and about tearing them apart. One of the judges who awarded him the 2011 Man Booker Prize described him as ‘an unparalled magus of the heart’. This book confirms that opinion.

I found the book an unusual and intriguing essay on the highs of love and togetherness and the fall into grief at the parting of ways. The latter part of the book, which focusses on Barnes’s personal experience of grief, is touching just as much through what is not stated but through what is implied and leaves the reader to feel into and draw their own conclusions. Highly recommended. (M)


Living with Loss: a guide for the recently widowed

Liz McNeill Taylor


Of the many books available on grief, this one has a very accessible, ‘human’ style, being the journey of one woman through the death of her much-loved husband. Free of the formal language of books aimed at counsellors and other professionals. The kind of book you’d recommend to your mum….

Overcoming Grief: a self-help guide using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques

Susan Morris

‘Contains a mixture of learning and common sense that is rare among books of advice for bereaved people.’ (Dr. Colin Murray Parkes, OBE, MD, FRCPsych; Life President Cruse Bereavement Care).

The author is a clinical psychologist trained in CBT. She ran the Bereavement Department5 at the Old Colony Hospice in Boston, USA, where she developed and facilitated a six-week support programme for families of the hospice patients.

The Five Ways we Grieve

Susan A. Berger

Finding your personal path to healing after the loss of a loved ones

(from the back cover): ‘This book offers hope with a plan –in the form of new ways to recognise, define and focus on our changed identity and worldview after loss. As a child therapist specialising in illness and loss, I found this book immensely helpful’.


‘Offers a fresh, new approach to understanding and coping with the major losses every being experiences. Dr. Susan. A Berger gives bereaved people a useful tool for interpreting their responses to a loss and creating a new normal for their lives.’


The Mourning Handbook – a complete guide for the bereaved

Helen Fitzgerald


“The most comprehensive resource for practical and compassionate advice on coping with all aspects of death and dying.”

(from the jacket) “Helen Fitzgerald, a grieving expert both by personal experience and by professional training, has written The Mourning Handbook to respond to the needs of people who are facing the death of a friend, relative, or family member. In a frank, no-nonsense, yet comforting manner, she deals with real questions about grieving that have been faced by real people…. Unlike other books on grieving, [it] fully explores the issues of complicated grief, such as when the mourner has been the inadvertent cause of death, when someone has been murdered, when there have been multiple deaths, when the death reveals secrets, or when there has been a disappearance or a body has not been recovered. As unique as some of these situations may sound, there have been many people who have experienced them and recovered.”


Unattended Sorrow

Stephen Levine


Unattended sorrow is unresolved grief that has never been given a chance to heal. This lovely, spiritual book from one of America’s most trusted grief counselors offers a series of techniques to help heal this pain so readers can lead full and joyful lives. The book not only guides those who have experienced a fresh loss to face the hurt before it settles in, but it also addresses the devastating impact of tragedies past, when people become “stuck” years after childhood abuse, teen rape, early divorce, or loss of a loved one.

“This book is an invaluable tool for anyone recovering from any type of major loss. A must must-read.”   (from the back cover)

Buy the book on Amazon: Unattended Sorrow: Recovering from Loss and Reviving the Heart

The Year of Magical Thinking

Joan Didion


(2005) Publisher: Fourth Estate; London

About the Book (from “From one of America’s iconic writers, a stunning book of electric honesty and passion. Joan Didion explores an intensely personal yet universal experience: a portrait of a marriage and a life – in good times and bad – that will speak to anyone who has ever loved a husband or wife or child.   … “This powerful book is Didion’s attempt to make sense of the “weeks and then months that cut loose any fixed idea I ever had about death, about illness . . . about marriage and children and memory . . . about the shallowness of sanity, about life itself.” Reviews: “Her book is thrilling . . . a living, sharp, memorable book . . . An exact, candid, and penetrating account of personal terror and bereavement . . . sometimes quite funny because it dares to tell the truth.” –Robert Pinsky, The New York Times Book Review (cover)
“Stunning candor and piercing details . . . An indelible portrait of loss and grief. [A] haunting portrait of a four-decade-long marriage.” – Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times


I found the book profound, and compelling reading. The author includes mention of several other related titles that might be on interest to you.

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