Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson by Mitch AlbomTuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson by Mitch Albom

Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson

byMitch Albom

Mass Market Paperback | December 27, 2005

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about

Maybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher, or a colleague.  Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, helped you see the world as a more profound place, gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it.

For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago.

Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and the insights faded, and the world seemed colder.  Wouldn't you like to see that person again, ask the bigger questions that still haunt you, receive wisdom for your busy life today the way you once did when you were younger?

Mitch Albom had that second chance.  He rediscovered Morrie in the last months of the older man's life.  Knowing he was dying, Morrie visited with Mitch in his study every Tuesday, just as they used to back in college.  Their rekindled relationship turned into one final "class": lessons in how to live.

Tuesdays with Morrie is a magical chronicle of their time together, through which Mitch shares Morrie's lasting gift with the world.
Mitch Albom is the author of six previous books. A nationally syndicated columnist for the Detroit Free Press and a nationally syndicated radio host for ABC and WJR-AM, Albom has, for more than a decade, been named top sports columnist in the nation by the Sports Editors of America, the highest honor in the field. A panelist on ESPN’s ...
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Title:Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest LessonFormat:Mass Market PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 6.7 × 4.2 × 0.9 inPublished:December 27, 2005Publisher:Knopf Doubleday Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0307275639

ISBN - 13:9780307275639

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from FANTASTIC this book is my favourite book of all time. it made me laugh, it made me cry...it was just all around incredible. it is a must read for all of you out there...men, women, 12+. i have read it 2 times now, and it is definitely one of those books that i am going to keep beside my bed, and read over and over again. it is the most amazing book out there. i dont know what else i can say other then READ IT READ IT READ IT! you will looooveee it!
Date published: 2007-12-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from best book! May have possibly been the best book I have ever read!! Keep the books coming Mitch.. I await your next one :)
Date published: 2007-08-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful I couldn't put this book down. If there was ever a book to change my life, this was it.
Date published: 2007-06-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Honest look at life This book is based on true life experience of the author with his favourite professor, Morrie Schwartz. He lost touch with his professor until he turned on his TV to learn that his professor was dying. So he promptly contacted him. Morrie was diagnosed with ALS, a degenerative muscular disease that has no cure. Stephen Hawkins is a well-known person with this condition. Morrie and Albom reconnect just as in school and they share wisdom during their Tuesday visits on the meaning of life, how to live a good life, how to be happy among other topics. This is profound book that allows you to reflect on life and I highly recommend it along with "Nexus" by Morrison & Singh. It also has a powerful spiritual message.
Date published: 2007-03-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Highly Recommend I highly recommend this book to everyone. Mitch Albom has written an amazing story that will inspire everybody. This book teaches us lessons that we can learn in our everyday lives. A must read.
Date published: 2006-08-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Totally Awesome This book was soo good, I loved it to pieces. You got a real sence what was happening to Morrie and how people around him coped with his illness. This book is really sad, about it is a good read.
Date published: 2006-08-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from beautiful story in life many people have important stories to share and i'm glad that Mitch Albom shared his.
Date published: 2006-08-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I cried all the way through Sad true story that will have you weeping all the way through. Luckily it doesn't take too long to read!!
Date published: 2006-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Life lesson in a few short pages... This book reminds me of a popular saying: "If God gives you lemons, make lemonade." This is one of the most inspiring story that I have read in a long time. Anyone afflicted or having been around a loved one when dealing with death will surely appreciate the lessons that this book has to offer. Most importantly, always take the time to pass on your wisedom as you never know who will gain from it in the long run. Through his writing, Mitch Albom has created a legacy to Morrie and his inner wisedom.
Date published: 2006-07-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This Book Can Change How You Think There are things about life that you never think about until you are dieing. This book gives a different perspective on situations that, I feel, can only come from a person at the end of their life. Morrie is not the most fortunate person acquiring a deadly disease but he manages to teach us all a lesson on how to spend our days. The message he sends on the importance of family and happiness is very profound and for some very comforting.
Date published: 2006-07-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Amazing Read! At the beginning of this book you think you will be drawn in for another "author on the fast track", but as you delve deeper, you realize that the story has a incredibly poignant lesson. Mitch's weekly visits open his eyes to many things that he never noticed before or never bothered to notice before. With each week, the reader gets to take away another lesson with Mitch to learn everything happens for a reason.
Date published: 2006-07-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Touching Great story especially helpful for those trying to cope with the illness or passing of a loved one. A real testament to the human spirit, just make sure you have Kleenex!
Date published: 2006-07-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down! A heart warming read. I read it cover to cover in one sitting. An absolutely must for anyone who has experienced a loss of a loved one. I was given the book after my father passed away. It was a true comfort. A must read!
Date published: 2006-07-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Another great book by Mitch! This book makes you see the things in life that really matter through the eyes of a man on his death bed. I think it will make a difference in the lives of anyone who reads this novel.
Date published: 2006-07-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stop, and think about it. This book came to me when I needed it most- and it made all the difference. I have since bought it, and given it away many time, all to the same result. Everyone should read it once, and that experience will have you reaching for it again and again. When you read it, the moment will be just right.
Date published: 2006-07-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Sure makes you think. I really enjoyed this thought provoking book. It is a unique view of what is important in life from someone whose life is slipping away. If you were to die tomorrow would you be happy with the way you lived your life?
Date published: 2006-06-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Reflection for our Life This book was beautifully written with many quotable phrases that continue to resonate in my mind even to this day. What makes this story such much more beautiful than what it already is, is that fact that it is a true story. It's amazing to know that real life can be as awe-inspiring as any fictional work of art, to know that some very real people are as heroric as any other super hero. I highly recommend this book to everyone, but especially to those that are deeply thankful for mentors that have guided them through life, or those that are having to say goodbyes to loved ones.
Date published: 2006-06-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What a Reality Check! A very powerful story contained in a small package. An easy read that tells the story of a remarkable man who maintains his dignity and positive attitude in the most trying time of his life. Worth the read!
Date published: 2006-06-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Must Read for Everyone! Incredibly poignant and inspiring, this is a book that is a MUST READ for all. Don't let the cover or the small size of the book fool you, each chapter is filled with words of wisdom, philosophy, and truth. This book is able to state the complexities in life with simple meanings based on death, fears, family, age, love, and compassion. You will not regret reading Tuesdays with Morrie, the lessons are something you will carry on for the rest of your life. Best book I have ever read, and truly expanded my perspectives on life.
Date published: 2006-06-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from How to live your life! A great book!!! Very philosophical. Pretty much a book on how one might live life in a better way. Morrie who is dying gives his former student lessons on the crucial matters in life: relationships, marriage, money, love and emotions.
Date published: 2006-06-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Heartfelt This is a heartelt text in which one cannot help but shed a tear. Morrie has touched lives, not only his students. He provides the readers with a new perspective on life, that there are more important things than money and success. After reading this book you will feel as though you can make a difference.
Date published: 2006-06-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A little Treasure “Tuesdays with Morrie” is a book that talks about an old man who has a deadly disease which is going to kill him slowly but surely. He worked as a professor at the university when he was young and now, one of his former students sees him in a TV Show and comes to visit him. He decides to meets Morrie, his former teacher, every Tuesday. In this book Morrie and his student talk about “life’s greatest lessons” until Morrie dies because of his disease. They touch topics like love, family, work, children, money, death and many more. I really love this book! It’s definitely one of the best I ever read if it’s not THE best I ever read. This book is not so adorable because the plot is so complex and complicated or the author writes in a remarkably style but it is more the topic and the person himself he is writing about. Of course you also need special skills to put this serious topic in the right words. I think if you read this book like the author wanted you to and you really try to dive in these words you will think about this book even a lot of times when you’re not reading it and I am serious when I’m saying that it can change your life. You can really learn from this book because Morrie was a great man and can be a wonderful example for everybody. You laugh, you wonder, you’re surprised, you’re angry and you cry in this book. It’s really worth to read it. It will touch you. (I’m apologizing for English mistakes but it is my second language.)
Date published: 2006-06-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The days before you die Tuesdays with Morrie is a very intreguing book. It makes you think about life and love and everything inbetween. It is a true story that about an old treacher dying of disease. His young student Mitch who he hasn't seen in ages because Mitch got caught up in life and work, visits him again and they decide to see each other on Tuesdays. Why Tuesdays? Because they are Tuesday people! Morrie is a great character they type of person you would love to meet and talk to and enjoy company with. He's happy and he's incredibly smart. Morrie is full of advice for the young and old. All through this book he gives wonderful advice to the reader. he speaks a lot about life and death and how to deal with it. How to let go and such things as this. But i do believe the best advice he gave in this book was about love. Morrie knows his stuff and he died a happy person because he knew he was loved and he knew he will never be forgotten!
Date published: 2006-06-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Absolutely Great! This book was electrifying, Tuesdays with Morrie deserves 2 thumbs way up! This book told the story of a very brave and noble man, someone who loved everything about life, a man who changed millions with his story. Mitch Albom (The author) was morrie’s student in college, he left after graduation and in a turn of events almost two decades later ends up back by the side of morrie. Mitch returns to Morrie when he realizes that Morrie only has a short time to live on, not knowing how long that would be, once again becoming the student of a wise man. I encourage to all to read this magnificent book, I was an inspiration to myself and others and if you read it, it will inspire you too.
Date published: 2006-06-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Life changing! This book is an amazing story about a proffessor who truely makes his mark on the world. Morrie is a man who tells it like it is He is dying from ALS, a terrible demeaning disease. Morrie waits every week to get a visit from his favorite student. They talk of life, love and loss. Morries' student learns that even a man lying on his deathbed can look at the world in a positive way. This book is one that i would recommend to everyone, whether you're an avid reader or would just like to get into the reading world. It really makes you wake up and appreciate the people in your life and remember the ones you've lost. Definitly a 10/10!
Date published: 2006-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Touching Read this book in a few hours (as with "The Five People You Meet in Heaven")...Mitch Albom writes so that you will laugh and cry right till the end of the book. I strongly recommend this book for anyone at any age. Absolute page-turner, upon finishing this book maybe you'll want to do something special for someone that you care about.
Date published: 2006-06-02
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Not one of my favourites After having this book recommended to me so many times, I finally decided to give it a try. I can honestly say that I didn't think it was out of this world. I actually found the book to be very depressing and extremely repettitive. Although the moral of the story was a good one, I can't say I really enjoyed the book. It's a small book you can finish in a few hours, and after finishing it, I can honestly say I was happy to be finished with the book. Not something I would read again or recommend to anyone else!
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best I loved this book. Everyone needs to read this and maybe learn something about life, gratitude and kindness.
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The World Needs more Morries MA's reflection on one of life's most beautiful gifts - human relationship, inspired me to reflect more. The simplicity in style along with the depth of emotion made this book a pleasure to read. At the risk of sounding sexist, the male perspective provided a special touch. I recommend it to anyone who is attending to aging parents or other loved ones. A good reminder to suck the marrow out of life.
Date published: 2006-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a wonderful read I found that Tuesday's with Morrie was one of the best books I have ever read. With each chapter I felt like I was learning a new lesson or a new way of looking at the world around me.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from "Heart-warming words of wisdom" Mitch Albom wrote this jewel of a book in memory of his late professor, Morrie Schwartz, and the lessons he learnt from their sessions in Morrie's last months. Simple and unpretentious, "Tuesdays with Morrie" is packed full of insights and wisdom that our generation craves to discover meaning in our hectic lives. I loved it and reread it whenever I needed guidance in my life. Read this book if you too would like to learn some of the most important lessons in life, gain some peace in your heart and discover a more joyful way of living.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Terrific! What a great book. As an aspiring teacher it reaffirms my feelings that a great teacher can make all the difference! The story between Mitch and Morrie is so touching and has everyone thinking back to that one teacher that really affected them. A tear jerker for sure!
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very refreshing and Inspiring read!!!!! I read this book in a few hours, it was such a fast read. It does really teach you a great lesson about life and really makes you think of what is really important. This book makes you laugh and cry at times. I fell in love with Morrie, I only wish that I had the chance to meet someone as inspiring as him. I think Mitch was a very lucky man to have had Morrie in his life. When you read this book you will really take a step back and look at your life and see what matters most. I absolutely adored this book and I think everyone should read it. I gave it to my mom right after and she called me a few hours later crying and telling me that it was one of the best and moving stories that she had ever read. I will probably read it again and I hope that I can pass it on and get more people to read it because it can really change many lives.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from GREAT BOOK! WOW Mitch Albom has done it again this is one of his best books. I didn't know much about ALS before I read this book and now I have had my eyes opened to this deadly disease. This book was wonderfully written and the lessons on life we are left with from the vast wisdom that Morrie had can enlighten us all. I recommend everybody read this book.
Date published: 2006-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WOW I purchased this book for personal reasons. I reacently lost my future father in law to ALS. I heard about this book while he was alive, but couldn't bring myself to buy it. Almost a year after his death I purchased it and read it in two days. Mitch Albom wrote a compelling book based on truth and facts. During each step of Morries illness I could see my loved one dealing with the same thing. Mitch Albom has brough some light to a horrible illness that claims our loved ones. Thanks Mitch Albom!
Date published: 2006-02-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING I thought this book was amazing!!! We read it in our Grade 12 english class and, I totally couldn't wait to go to class the next day to hear what would happen next. Then I just had to send my mom out to buy the book for me so I could read ahead!
Date published: 2006-02-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from COMPELLING I read this book in 2 days.....I never read...it moved me to tears in so many parts....brought back good and bad memories of my own mother's death. Thank you for such an excellent read.
Date published: 2006-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Touches every corner of your heart and soul I have heard of this title before and finally decided to pick up a copy, could not wait to find out more after the first chapter. Very profound and meaningful book, helps you reflect on your own life and sort out priorities. Demonstrates that even the most terrible thing in life can be dealt with a positiive outlook. I'm purchasing this book for all my friends and Chinese versions for my family to read! Well written book!
Date published: 2006-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bookworm I couldn't put it down. Not only an excellent story, but contained valuable life lessons. The main character comes to life as you read Mitch's descriptions. You feel like you yourself have met Morrie and heard his words. It makes you stop and think about the real important things in life. Morrie was selfless enough to share his experience, as his life ended, and we can learn from his wisdom.
Date published: 2006-01-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Tuesdays With Morrie: An Old Man, A Young Man, And I read this book on the last day of my Father's life. I played classical music as I sat at the foot of his bed tending to his needs and waiting for him to die. It is ironic that I ended up with this book at this time. Originally it was purchased for my enjoyment on a flight to Aruba (which I cancelled to be with my Father). I really enjoyed the read. It was insightful and assisted me in immersing myself into the experience of dying (and of course living).
Date published: 2004-05-18

Read from the Book

The CurriculumThe last class of my old professor's life took place once a week in his house, by a window in the study where he could watch a small hibiscus plant shed its pink leaves.  The class met on Tuesdays. It began after breakfast. The subject was The Meaning of Life. It was taught from experience.  No grades were given, but there were oral exams each week. You were expected to respond to questions, and you were expected to pose questions of your own. You were also required to perform physical tasks now and then, such as lifting the professor's head to a comfortable spot on the pillow or placing his glasses on the bridge of his nose. Kissing him good-bye earned you extra credit.  No books were required, yet many topics were covered, including love, work, community, family, aging, forgiveness, and, finally, death. The last lecture was brief, only a few words.  A funeral was held in lieu of graduation.  Although no final exam was given, you were expected to produce one long paper on what was learned. That paper is presented here.  The last class of my old professor's life had only one student. I was the student.It is the late spring of 1979, a hot, sticky Saturday afternoon. Hundreds of us sit together, side by side, in rows of wooden folding chairs on the main campus lawn. We wear blue nylon robes. We listen impatiently to long speeches. When the ceremony is over, we throw our caps in the air, and we are officially graduated from college, the senior class of Brandeis University in the city of Waltham, Massachusetts. For many of us, the curtain has just come down on childhood.  Afterward, I find Morrie Schwartz, my favorite professor, and introduce him to my parents. He is a small man who takes small steps, as if a strong wind could, at any time, whisk him up into the clouds. In his graduation day robe, he looks like a cross between a biblical prophet and a Christmas elf. He has sparkling blue-green eyes, thinning silver hair that spills onto his forehead, big ears, a triangular nose, and tufts of graying eyebrows. Although his teeth are crooked and his lower ones are slanted back--as if someone had once punched them in--when he smiles it's as if you'd just told him the first joke on earth.  He tells my parents how I took every class he taught.  He tells them, "You have a special boy here."  Embarrassed, I look at my feet. Before we leave, I hand my professor a present, a tan briefcase with his initials on the front. I bought this the day before at a shopping mall.  I didn't want to forget him. Maybe I didn't want him to forget me.      "Mitch, you are one of the good ones," he says, admiring the briefcase. Then he hugs me. I feel his thin arms around my back. I am taller than he is, and when he holds me, I feel awkward, older, as if I were the parent and he were the child.  He asks if I will stay in touch, and without hesitation I say, "Of course."   When he steps back, I see that he is crying.The SyllabusHis death sentence came in the summer of 1994. Looking back, Morrie knew something bad was coming long before that. He knew it the day he gave up dancing.  He had always been a dancer, my old professor. The music didn't matter. Rock and roll, big band, the blues. He loved them all. He would close his eyes and with a blissful smile begin to move to his own sense of rhythm. It wasn't always pretty. But then, he didn't worry about a partner.  Morrie danced by himself.  He used to go to this church in Harvard Square every Wednesday night for something called "Dance Free."  They had flashing lights and booming speakers and Morrie would wander in among the mostly student crowd, wearing a white T-shirt and black sweatpants and a towel around his neck, and whatever music was playing, that's the music to which he danced. He'd do the lindy to Jimi Hendrix. He twisted and twirled, he waved his arms like a conductor on amphetamines, until sweat was dripping down the middle of his back. No one there knew he was a prominent doctor of sociology, with years of experience as a college professor and several well-respected books.  They just thought he was some old nut.  Once, he brought a tango tape and got them to play it over the speakers. Then he commandeered the floor, shooting back and forth like some hot Latin lover. When he finished, everyone applauded. He could have stayed in that moment forever.  But then the dancing stopped.  He developed asthma in his sixties. His breathing became labored. One day he was walking along the Charles River, and a cold burst of wind left him choking for air. He was rushed to the hospital and injected with Adrenalin.  A few years later, he began to have trouble walking.  At a birthday party for a friend, he stumbled inexplicably.  Another night, he fell down the steps of a theater, startling a small crowd of people.      "Give him air!" someone yelled.  He was in his seventies by this point, so they whispered "old age" and helped him to his feet. But Morrie, who was always more in touch with his insides than the rest of us, knew something else was wrong. This was more than old age. He was weary all the time. He had trouble sleeping. He dreamt he was dying.  He began to see doctors. Lots of them. They tested his blood. They tested his urine. They put a scope up his rear end and looked inside his intestines. Finally, when nothing could be found, one doctor ordered a muscle biopsy, taking a small piece out of Morrie's calf. The lab report came back suggesting a neurological problem, and Morrie was brought in for yet another series of tests. In one of those tests, he sat in a special seat as they zapped him with electrical current--an electric chair, of sorts--and studied his neurological responses.      "We need to check this further," the doctors said, looking over his results.      "Why?" Morrie asked. "What is it?"      "We're not sure. Your times are slow."  His times were slow? What did that mean?  Finally, on a hot, humid day in August 1994, Morrie and his wife, Charlotte, went to the neurologist's office, and he asked them to sit before he broke the news: Morrie had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Lou Gehrig's disease, a brutal, unforgiving illness of the neurological system.  There was no known cure.      "How did I get it?" Morrie asked.  Nobody knew.      "Is it terminal?"  Yes.      "So I'm going to die?"  Yes, you are, the doctor said. I'm very sorry.  He sat with Morrie and Charlotte for nearly two hours, patiently answering their questions. When they left, the doctor gave them some information on ALS, little pamphlets, as if they were opening a bank account.  Outside, the sun was shining and people were going about their business. A woman ran to put money in the parking meter. Another carried groceries. Charlotte had a million thoughts running through her mind: How much time do we have left? How will we manage? How will we pay the bills?  My old professor, meanwhile, was stunned by the normalcy of the day around him. Shouldn't the world stop? Don't they know what has happened to me?  But the world did not stop, it took no notice at all, and as Morrie pulled weakly on the car door, he felt as if he were dropping into a hole.  Now what? he thought.As my old professor searched for answers, the disease took him over, day by day, week by week. He backed the car out of the garage one morning and could barely push the brakes. That was the end of his driving.  He kept tripping, so he purchased a cane. That was the end of his walking free.  He went for his regular swim at the YMCA, but found he could no longer undress himself. So he hired his first home care worker--a theology student named Tony--who helped him in and out of the pool, and in and out of his bathing suit. In the locker room, the other swimmers pretended not to stare. They stared anyhow.  That was the end of his privacy.  In the fall of 1994, Morrie came to the hilly Brandeis campus to teach his final college course. He could have skipped this, of course. The university would have understood. Why suffer in front of so many people? Stay at home. Get your affairs in order. But the idea of quitting did not occur to Morrie.  Instead, he hobbled into the classroom, his home for more than thirty years. Because of the cane, he took a while to reach the chair. Finally, he sat down, dropped his glasses off his nose, and looked out at the young faces who stared back in silence.      "My friends, I assume you are all here for the Social Psychology class. I have been teaching this course for twenty years, and this is the first time I can say there is a risk in taking it, because I have a fatal illness. I may not live to finish the semester.      "If you feel this is a problem, I understand if you wish to drop the course."  He smiled.  And that was the end of his secret. ALS is like a lit candle: it melts your nerves and leaves your body a pile of wax. Often. it begins with the legs and works its way up. You lose control of your thigh muscles, so that you cannot support yourself standing.  You lose control of your trunk muscles, so that you cannot sit up straight. By the end, if you are still alive, you are breathing through a tube in a hole in your throat, while your soul, perfectly awake, is imprisoned inside a limp husk, perhaps able to blink, or cluck a tongue, like something from a science fiction movie, the man frozen inside his own flesh. This takes no more than five years from the day you contract the disease.  Morrie's doctors guessed he had two years left.  Morrie knew it was less.  But my old professor had made a profound decision, one he began to construct the day he came out of the doctor's office with a sword hanging over his head. Do I wither up and disappear, or do I make the best of my time left? he had asked himself.  He would not wither. He would not be ashamed of dying.  Instead, he would make death his final project, the center point of his days. Since everyone was going to die, he could be of great value, right? He could be research. A human textbook. Study me in my slow and patient demise.  Watch what happens to me. Learn with me.  Morrie would walk that final bridge between life and death, and narrate the trip.  The fall semester passed quickly. The pills increased.  Therapy became a regular routine. Nurses came to his house to work with Morrie's withering legs, to keep the muscles active, bending them back and forth as if pumping water from a well. Massage specialists came by once a week to try to soothe the constant, heavy stiffness he felt. He met with meditation teachers, and closed his eyes and narrowed his thoughts until his world shrunk down to a single breath, in and out, in and out.  One day, using his cane, he stepped onto the curb and fell over into the street. The cane was exchanged for a walker. As his body weakened, the back and forth to the bathroom became too exhausting, so Morrie began to urinate into a large beaker. He had to support himself as he did this, meaning someone had to hold the beaker while Morrie filled it.  Most of us would be embarrassed by all this, especially at Morrie's age. But Morrie was not like most of us. When some of his close colleagues would visit, he would say to them, "Listen, I have to pee. Would you mind helping? Are you okay with that?"  Often, to their own surprise, they were.  In fact, he entertained a growing stream of visitors. He had discussion groups about dying, what it really meant, how societies had always been afraid of it without necessarily understanding it. He told his friends that if they really wanted to help him, they would treat him not with sympathy but with visits, phone calls, a sharing of their problems--the way they had always shared their problems, because Morrie had always been a wonderful listener.  For all that was happening to him, his voice was strong and inviting, and his mind was vibrating with a million thoughts. He was intent on proving that the word "dying" was not synonymous with "useless."  The New Year came and went. Although he never said it to anyone, Morrie knew this would be the last year of his life. He was using a wheelchair now, and he was fighting time to say all the things he wanted to say to all the people he loved. When a colleague at Brandeis died suddenly of a heart attack, Morrie went to his funeral. He came home depressed.      "What a waste," he said. "All those people saying all those wonderful things, and Irv never got to hear any of it."  Morrie had a better idea. He made some calls. He chose a date. And on a cold Sunday afternoon, he was joined in his home by a small group of friends and family for a "living funeral." Each of them spoke and paid tribute to my old professor. Some cried. Some laughed. One woman read a poem:"My dear and loving cousin ...      Your ageless heart      as you move through time, layer on layer,      tender sequoia ..." Morrie cried and laughed with them. And all the heartfelt things we never get to say to those we love, Morrie said that day. His "living funeral" was a rousing success.   Only Morrie wasn't dead yet.    In fact, the most unusual part of his life was about to unfold.From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

“Mitch Albom’s book is a gift to mankind.” --The Philadelphia Inquirer“A wonderful book, a story of the heart told by a writer with soul.” --Los Angeles Times“An elegantly simple story about a writer getting a second chance to discover life through the death of a friend.” --Tampa Tribune“An extraordinary contribution to the literature of death.” --The Boston Globe“This is a true story that shines and leaves you forever warmed by its afterglow.” --Amy Tan“Every page of this beautiful, moving little book shines with the warmth of unembarrassed love.” --Rabbi Harold Kushner“One of those books that kind of sneaked up and grabbed people’s hearts over time.” --Milwaukee Journal Sentinel“The book is an incredible treasure.” --Bernie Siegel, M.D.