Books and Publications

The Power of Premonitions:
How Knowing the Future Can Shape our Lives
Dutton Adult (April 30, 2009)

A dream prompts a mother to remove her baby from his crib an hour before a chandelier falls and smashes it. More than a dozen people are no shows for choir practice for the first time ever at the moment their church explodes. Before his patients ever call to say they're coming to the hospital, an OBGYN gets a pain in his chest signaling they're ready to deliver. Visions of planes crashing into buildings causes a mother to cancel her family's Disney World trip scheduled for 9/11. Are these coincidences, or is something happening that we need to pay attention to?

This is the question Dr. Larry Dossey asked himself during his first year of medical practice. He had never had any sense of knowing the future when he experienced a week of premonitions about patients all of which came true. As a scientist and medical doctor he was taught that knowing the future wasn't possible. He was scared to talk about his premonitions because if he dared believe anything he was experiencing was possible—that the future could be known before it happened—then his entire education and worldview would be turned on its head. But as suddenly as the premonitions started, they stopped: "It was as if the universe, having delivered a message," writes Dossey in the Introduction, "hung up the phone. It was now my job to make sense of it — which I try to do in this book."

More than an examination of case studies, The Power of Premonitions reveals the world of science and research that proves the human capacity for knowing the future. Experiments consistently show that human beings are as wired to know what's coming next as we are to see, feel, hear and think. Dossey uses cutting-edge science to prove the value of what had long been considered the provenance of mystic charlatans and to show readers how to cultivate their natural abilities. This is a book for the skeptical mind, but it's also for the believer's heart—because its author possesses the rare gift of having both.

"I'm not asking you to take anything in this book on blind faith, but to open yourself up to the possibility of premonitions and the evidence supporting them. Listen to the stories people tell. Explore the research that demonstrates our capacity to sense the future. Ponder the implications of mind outside of time. Invite premonitions into your life and see what happens. If you do so humbly and reverently, your life will likely become more premonition-prone, and you may touch that exquisite, infinite realm to which premonitions, now as always, are a door."
— Larry Dossey, MD

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The Extraordinary Healing Power of Ordinary Things
Harmony/Random House, 2006

"Holistic physician Dossey examines the potential power of 14 readily accessible sources of well-being, providing a strong case for utilizing such remedies before more extreme measures. His expansive discourse on optimism, forgetting, music, miracles, plants, risk taking and other "simple" things makes clear that, while these are hardly "simple" when fully appreciated…. Dossey takes readers on a poetic, well-researched journey into the many paradoxes that are inherent in the human condition and how they relate to healing the body, mind and soul."
— Publishers Weekly
October 31, 2005

Healing Beyond the Body
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Healing Beyond the Body

Shambhala, 2001

"Healing Beyond the Body offers a rare opportunity to look at human nature through the eyes of physician and see the shape of the Divine. This brilliant collection of medical essays is a great contribution to the literature of medicine, and of consciousness, placing Dossey in the tradition of Richard Selzer, Lewis Thomas, and Oliver Sacks."

Healing Beyond the Body
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  - Rachel Naomi Remen, MD,
   author of Kitchen Table Wisdom
   and   My Grandfather's Blessings

If medicine is truly to be a healing art, it must address not only our bodies, but our minds and spirit as well; it must deal not only with the mechanisms of illness, but with its meanings; and it must recognize that our power to heal and be healed extends beyond our physical bodies.

Reinventing Medicine
HarperSanFrancisco, 1999

"In order to understand how healing happens, in the twenty-first century we shall look not only at our atoms and molecules but at consciousness as well. In so doing, we shall reinvent medicine, adding ancient wisdom to modern science. The result will be fabulously more successful-and fulfilling-than science alone."
- Larry Dossey, M.D.
  from Reinventing Medicine

Reinventing Medicine
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Dr. Larry Dossey created a sensation in 1993 with his groundbreaking book, Healing Words, in which he presented solid scientific evidence that prayer can figure prominently in healing illness. Now, in Reinventing Medicine: Beyond Mind-Body to a New Era of Healing, Dr. Dossey again surveys the future: We are on the brink of a new era of medical care, an era that considers and implements our growing knowledge of the power of nonlocal mind in healing and life.

Dr. Dossey defines the major periods in the history of medicine: Era I medicine (mechanical medicine), Era II medicine (psychosomatic medicine), and Era III medicine (nonlocal medicine). Era III medicine incorporates all the benefits and warnings we have gleaned from intensified understanding of the effects of prayer and intention.

Dr. Dossey lays out a compelling argument for merging awareness of consciousness into the practice of modern medicine. By perceiving the boundlessness of the nonlocal mind, Dr. Dossey argues, we discern our own interconnectedness - with extraordinarily practical implications. We are further able to reevaluate our concept of mortality even as we are increasingly guided by the Golden Rule of Era III: "Do good unto others because they are you!"

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Be Careful What You Pray For...
You Just Might Get It

HarperSanFrancisco, 1997

(Also available on audio cassette.)

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In this frank and challenging book, Dr. Dossey sets out to understand the "neglected shadow side" of prayer. Having established the benefits of prayer in Prayer is Good Medicine and Healing Words, Dossey flips the coin and asks "Can prayer harm?" The resulting inquiry takes us through the history of negative prayer. Dr. Dossey looks at the various forms that prayer's "shadow" can take, whether it be hexing, the death wish, the evil eye, or merely harboring a bad attitude. Assessing negative prayer from the perspective of evolutionary biology, Dossey considers how we can protect ourselves from the negative thoughts of others. By acknowledging the potential harm of each negative thought, it becomes possible to manifest the positive in its stead. Dr. Dossey's stirring discussion is at once a cautionary tale and a declaration of confidence in our ability to reshape our most private thoughts for the ultimate benefit of humanity.

Prayer is Good Medicine
How to Reap the Healing Benefits of Prayer

HarperSanFrancisco, 1996

(Also available on audio cassette.)

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Prayer research is sparking an unsettling, yet potentially reformative, energy within the medical establishment. Encompassing the data as well as the controversies, Dr. Dossey delves into such questions as why doesn't prayer always work; is it blasphemy to test prayer in the laboratory; does prayer simply create a "false hope"; is a physician's decision not to recommend prayer akin to medical malpractice?

Dossey compares prayer to traditional therapies and observes that, when used in tandem with other orthodox and alternative measures, prayer is indeed powerful medicine. Dr. Dossey further affirms that prayer is remarkably democratic: Research confirms that no particular religion holds a monopoly on prayer's efficacy; and one does not need to be religious, per se, to pray effectively or to benefit medically from prayer.

Healing Words
The Power of Prayer
and the Practice of Medicine

HarperSanFrancisco, 1993

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Cited as one of the
"Top 25 Books of the Last 25 Years"
Natural Health Magazine, March/April, 1996
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In this New York Times bestseller, Dr. Dossey restores the spiritual art of healing to the science of medicine. Healing Words points the way toward "a medicine that is both effective and more humane, a medicine that works better and feels better."

Like many who believe they must choose between the intellectual and the emotional, the analytical and the spiritual, Dr. Dossey graduated from medical school with the belief that prayer was little more than superstition. After practicing medicine for many years, he was stunned to come across scientific evidence of prayer's healing power. His "white-coated, scientific" world view undermined, Dr. Dossey embarked on ten years of research into the relationship between prayer and healing.

Citing compelling studies and case histories, Dr. Dossey breaks new ground in our understanding of how prayer complements good medicine. He describes how prayer manifests in laboratory experiments; he examines which methods of prayer show the greatest potential and how one's innate temperament and personality affect prayer style.

As we recognize that the "empirical evidence for prayer's power is indirect evidence for the soul," Dossey believes we will find ourselves praying more prayers of gratitude and fewer prayers of supplication. This, asserts Dossey, is "the proper response on realizing that the world, at heart, is more glorious, benevolent, and friendlier than we have recently supposed."

Meaning & Medicine
A Doctor's Tales of Breakthrough and Healing

Bantam, 1991

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Physician Larry Dossey investigates the extraordinary power of meaning to affect mind-body interactions. Through fascinating clinical stories, Dossey shows how thought and emotion influence the body -- and can make the difference between life and death. He describes the Black Monday Syndrome, the fact that more heart attacks occur on Monday mornings around 9:00 than at any other time. He shows how the heart can actually break from grief or stop from shame.

Dr. Dossey offers a strong antidote to these negatives: Meaning also has the power to heal and change. He brings us the case of the Fishskin Boy, whose rare genetic skin disorder was healed through hypnosis, and of a fourteen-year-old computer whiz who "programmed" his own visualizations to utilize chemotherapy efficiently. He further explores how music, biofeedback, miracles, prayer, and the inner "controller" can contribute to the healing process. Dr. Dossey then takes us into the world of the hospital and gives specific instructions to help anyone survive a hospital stay.

Recovering the Soul
A Scientific and Spiritual Search

Bantam, 1989

(Also available on audio cassette.)

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"A truly luminous book. Exciting, challenging, and ultimately inspiring...bound to become a classic in the convergence of science, medicine, and religion."
Joan Borysenko, Ph.D.  
Author of Minding the Body, Mending the Mind and A Woman's Book of Life  

What is the soul? Can the soul be scientifically explained? In this thought-provoking book, Dr. Dossey provides an alternative view of human consciousness, one which asserts that an aspect of the human mind--the soul--exists independently of time, space, and matter.

"Why speak of the soul in an age of science?" asks Dr. Dossey. "Why suggest that there is some aspect of the psyche that is not subject to the limitations of space and time, and which might precede the birth of the body and survive its death? The main reason is that something vital has been left out of almost all the modern efforts to understand our mental life-- something that accounts as a first principle, without which everything is bound to be incomplete and off base. This missing element is the mind's nonlocal nature: the soul." In Recovering the Soul, Dr. Dossey interweaves the wisdom of ancient texts with quantum physics, mysticism with scientific research, religion with Western medicine and triumphantly affirms our interconnectedness with the universe, and each other.

Space, Time & Medicine
Shambhala, 1982
Foreword by physicist Fritjof Capra

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"A lively book that sparkles with ideas."
                                                - Publisher's Weekly
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Western medicine has long viewed the body as working mechanically, like clockwork: A breakdown of its parts causes illness. But modern physics says something new about the universe; its more holistic view includes the effects of consciousness on matter and the possibility of nonlinear time. Western medicine has not yet embraced these new ideas, and as a result physicians find themselves "with a set of guiding beliefs that are as antiquated as are body humors, leeching, and bleeding."

Dr. Larry Dossey discusses our obsession with time and how the notion of time "flowing" may profoundly act upon our health. Those who are able to alter their concept of time flow, says Dr. Dossey, have been able to positively affect the course of their disease.

EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing


Since 2005, Dr. Dossey has served as executive editor of this prestigious peer-reviewed journal, which covers the fields of integrative mediciine, environmental health, spirituality, and consciousness-related health issues.
Explore by Larry Dossey

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