Bodhisangha Teacher, Germany

Heidi KernHeidi, born in 1943, lives in Augsburg and in India. She was a student of the Japanese Zen master Yamada Koun and received from him her teaching permission 1988 and the dharma name "Heki-un an". She spent a total of 17 years in Japan and cared for Yamada Koun during his last months of life. However, she did not feel mature enough to pass on the Zen teachings, so she continued to study with Fr. Ama Samy, whom she had met in Japan, and with Sogyal Rinpoche, from whom she learned Buddhist death guidance. After going through all the 600 koans a third time, she received a renewed teaching license from Gert Lüderitz in India in 2020.

By profession, Heidi is a teacher in health care and nursing. She particularly cared about the nursing and spiritual accompaniment of dying and demented people and also worked to improve palliative care in Germany and abroad. For her commitment to improving care, she and her care team have been awarded two care prizes.

Heidi's spiritual roots are as diverse as her life. In the Benedictine Abbey of Niederaltaich, the devout Catholic has had a deep friendship with Father Emmanuel Jungclaussen OSB for decades. Numerous conversations with him gave rise to the ideas for her book "Individuelle Sterbebegleitung," which was published in 2015 and provides spiritual guidance for accompanying dying people of different faiths.