“There is a great man who makes every man feel small. But the real great man is the man who makes every man feel great.”
So said G K Chesterton, and there is no doubt that Dr Sacks was a great man who made every man feel great. We will all miss his wisdom, compassion and sheer enthusiasm for life. His insight into the way the brain works was miraculous.
He leaves a great legacy behind him and is irreplaceable.
I watched him on Youtube at a TED talk, "What hallucination reveals about our mind", and from the first word, i was hooked...by his voice, by the way he is telling the story of his patient, by his sincerity and his smile, by his profound expertise ...i wished i was a doctor like him...i wished i was a student of him or his grandchild.
I decided i should send him an e-mail and tell him how i felt about him....
In the meantime, Youtube automatically moved to the next Ted talk but i returned back to his page and started reading the comments...Then, i learnt he passed away already...i felt like i lost my grandfather...He seemed so sweet i wish i knew him before...i am so sorry :( God bless you Oliver Sacks and thank you for spending some time on this planet and being such a good example....Lots of love...
I have followed Dr Sacks for many many years. I owe much of my understanding and work ethic to him. A true hero and inspiration in Neurological rehabilitation, sadly missed. My best wishes Shirley
I met Oliver Sacks's books very late. Thank you for touching my life! Every case seems to open new horizons in my mind. Moreover, the endless learning and teaching energy in Oliver Sacks has impressed me a lot. I cannot wait to read more books.
Your site is a template for those who want content of quality and relevance, I am already a reader.
I was so moved when reading On the Move I often closed the book, put it down, and turned to my partner absorbed in her knitting,and with eyes moist, told her how wonderful this book was. She gave me a huge smile every time.
I have only read Hallucinations of Oliver's collection because I was looking for answers for some of my own experiences that 'clinicians' wrote off as 'delusional' and other psychiatric jargon. Oliver is one of those writers who, by fortune of having grown up with a wonderful caring Jewish family and followed in his parents footsteps--GETS IT- and allows himself to be fully human and present for those he seeks to help, regardless of whether the 'good old boys club' approve or not. I believe in Judaism is is called 'TIKKUN OLAM" which translates 'to repair the world'and a man like Oliver Sacks surely asked himself every day 'what good to I do in the world?" I am now more pumped to write a book myself perhaps in Oliver's style if I can about my own personal experiences in my treatment since being diagnosed with bipolar illness (which I do not necessarily agree with). My experience of trying to resolve a conflict with a mental health support society where I am a member that borders on stupidity, arrogance, condescension and much personal bias by people I trusted. I think when I read in On the Move about Oliver's father and his insistence of 'shem tov' (good solid character) this is the perspective I am going to write my book from.
Thank you so much for your books and being a fine human being, bless your soul, Oliver Sacks. I will be sure to read the rest of your books in future.
Being a medical student, i only reads course books because of lack of time. But your books and the comments below shows that i should read one of your book. looking for them at amazon to purchase one.
in the 60s oliver was doing his residency at ucla--I was in the grad program at usc--our common social and exercise place was the muscle beach weight lifting club--a place of many laughs and many pounds of iron lifted--I benched 440lbs--sacks squatted over 600lbs.--I THINK he approached an 800-but am not sure. when he finished his studies and went east a lot of us missed him. a few years back I had an exhibit at marlborough and tried to get him to the opening but no luck; UNFORTUNATELY I forgot olivers discomfort around crowded events
Hi, I've currently learned about Oliver Sacks due getting hallucinations of which no one has any clue how to treat. Life w/a killer whale rolling in 10 inches next to me in tide isn't fun. On the other hand I didn't know I could still run that fast. I know these things I see are not real, but the terror (or other) they can evoke is. Anyone with info links is appreciated. (Am seeing neurologists, going to see a opthamologist next week.}
I discovered about Oliver Sacks through the movie Awakenings which to this day remains one of my favourite films.
I enjoyed very much reading the book ' Insomniac City' as it reveals more of the sweet, honest, positive, uncompromising, and unique character Doct Sacks had.
Thanks for giving testimony of this lovely relationship and the beauty that has come out of it.
I recently read the Spanish version of On The Move. Me sentí muy identificado con el Dr Sacks, con el que creo compartir ante todo una gran curiosidad por la realidad y la vida, y especialmente con las pequeñas cosas que la componen. El modo en que recibimos y analizamos esa realidad es sin duda una manera importante de comprender qué es nuestra vida y cómo hacemos uso de ella. Me hizo especialmente gracia su desaliño con el vestido, cosa que comparto con él. También su tendencia a desconcentrarse. Si yo tuviera su inteligencia creo que podría haber hecho algo importante. Dice la Dra. Burnett que su objetivo principal es hacer algo importante por la humanidad. Ese debería ser nuestra meta de vida. Aunque ya falleciera hace unos años, quiero felicitar al Señor Sacks por su labor, por su experiencia vital y por su entusiasmo. Reconozco que para mí es ahora un ejemplo de vida. Gracias.
My favorite statement from Oliver Sacks is this one. I have printed it on a plaque that is mounted on the wall outside my office:
Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure.
Hallucinations simply amazed me. To find an explanation for the puzzling experiences of childhood after all these years is so wonderful, as I have spent a lifetime trying to convince myself I was either nuts or imagined the whole thing. As a child I was able to hallucinate at will...as my own private video. My favourite was to bring forth an ad from the old `Scribners Magazine`` of people in lovely elegant clothes dancing to music drifting across my bedroom wall after bedtime. I saw them, heard the music ad was filled with delight. Also had a print of Loki on me bedroom wall I was terrrified of him because he used to reach out from the picture and beckon me to him. I was so scared I would go into his picture and never be seen again. I felt its evil. Thanks for letting me vent. I am now ninety five but these experiences are still as vivis as they were many years ago. Thanks for your light. Islay Wyckham
I have been inspired and moved by Oliver Sacks' great works. Reading his books sparked an interest in pursuing neuroscience as a career for me. While most 16-year-old girls would have a One Direction poster hanging up in their room, I have my 'On the Move' poster, a birthday present, proudly displayed in a place of honor. I am so excited to celebrate his life tomorrow, but it also brings great sadness on the anniversary of his passing. I deeply regret never being able to thank him for the influence he has had on my life. RIP, Doctor Sacks.
Dr. Oliver Sacks,
I can feel your compassion and kindness to your patients. Your books are really worthy-reading.
Oliver Sacks's books are wonderful. They are all about human nature and human thoughts. I really want to be a part of this Foundation. Can I become a member?
I am writing to say my gratitude to Dr. sacks and to those who make contribution to Science. I am very sad that he is not with us anymore, but I am sure his energy, his spirit, his soul, his mind are the candles for many of living.
It happened so that one of his books, the book 'A Man who Mistook his Wife for a Hat' played a great role in my life and in the history of my disease.
The matter is that I had and still have problems with the health which were not diagnosed by neurologists. The clinical symptoms are allergy which looks like endotoxicosis, the lack of proprioception, disability to move softly like all humans do.
I am a Russian girl from medical family, I have 6 doctors among my relatives, I myself is public relations manager and I am also specialized in sociology. These health problems appeared 3 years ago and neurologists interpreted them as 'vegetative dystonia syndrome'. But time passed by and never the less I could not walk normally. And this moment I came across the Book of Dr. Sacks and I studied the case of his patient Cristy who 'lost' her body.
This was insight in my studying and observing my disease. My peripheral neuropathy, edema, head aches and all other symptoms seemed to be pieces of one chain which became clear for my perception just because of the Book of Dr. Sacks.
I know, I am absolutely sure that all what happens is not occasionally and I know there is a deep sense in my coming across The Book of this great Scientist and extraordinary person. I pray for his soul to be in peace and I will try to do all my best to spread and increase his ideas by my own scientific work. I don't have medical education, but I hope to work in cross-specialized field of psychology, sociology, public relations and culture studying. I hope to contribute in studying the Mind and Soul. I thank God for letting me know the works of Dr. Sacks.
I have read a lot of Dr. Sacks books. He was a wonderful man. I am now reading his book "ON THE MOVE." I wish I met him as my neurology problems - migraine and occipital neuralgia My grandfather had this too. I was terribly upset about him dying. I have seen him on PBS also.
I have just finished reading "On the move"; what a wonderful book and what a wonderful man. It saddens me that I am only now getting to know Dr. Sacks - I only wish I would have somehow had the chance to listen to him or even meet him.
It is difficult to pick out one story that I liked best (there are so many - and I still have so much to read...); however the description of how he fell in love with Billy at 75 was very touching.
If you ever need help from someone in Germany... feel free to look me up!
Dr. Oliver Sacks has been seducing me with his wonderful way of talking about the brain and people's lives. I love to read him!!