A Dying Man’s Last Lecture

Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch, who was dying from pancreatic cancer, gave his last lecture at the university Sept. 18, 2007, before a packed McConomy Auditorium. In his moving talk, “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams,” Pausch talked about his lessons learned and gave advice to students on how to achieve their own career and personal goals.

Randy passed away on Friday July 25th, 2008. He was 47 years old.

Short Version: 12 Minutes as Featured on Oprah
Original Full Version: 1 hr 16 Minutes in Carnegie Melon University

I hope this gets you to think about your own dreams, about the transient nature of this beautiful life and the “brick walls” that we all face every time we dream of something big…

Have fun! Be grateful for this wonderful adventure called life! And…

Never, never, never, never give up!


Shafin de Zane, CHT, MH, MNLP
Hypnotherapist, Author, Spiritual Teacher

12 thoughts on “A Dying Man’s Last Lecture

  • Great talk wonderful man.
    BUT he should have been more careful what he expected and believed to be true.

    I was diagnosed with late stage ovarian cancer and ‘given’ “3 to 6 months to live” in Nov. 2003. After searching inside myself I realized that the doctor’s prediction was not necessarily the whole truth. Yes, I could die very soon, I felt that. I also felt that 90% of my body was in good health. I thought of my garden. Would I give up on a plant that was only 10% diseased? Most likely I’d clean off the disease and try to save the plant.
    The doctors were very upset with me when I didn’t break down and accept the death sentence. They accused me of being in denial and even shouted at me in frustration: “don’t you get it, you’re dying!” They recommended very expensive and highly toxic carcinagenic treatments but since they’d already told me the goal (death) I decided not to follow their recommendations. I also came to know that the word “cancer” is primarily a marketing term. It’s used to describe over 5,000 different diseases from cell ulceration to cell proliferation. Most important is that this marketing term represents the most profitable “disease” in the history of humanity. The treatments offered make more sense when cancer is viewed as a business and nothing makes more sense in business than to create repeat business.

    I went into refusal of the diagnosis as well as the FEAR. I focus on what is good in me. I’ve changed my mind and life style habits and I avoid any interactions with the cancer industry.

    I’m still alive and feeling good this November 2008

    In Love Ruchel

  • Thanks for your input Ruchel. More people like you (or more action from YOU) are needed to spread this message across the globe. This “sickness” industry is indeed killing millions around the planet every day in the name of healing. However, amazing but true, people would rather die than question these almighty doctors (who are able to only operate from this truly sick framework, so you cant blame them too much either, they are more ignorant than evil).

    If I’m not mistaken, in the USA, the number 3 leading cause of unnatural death is something called Iatrogenic diseases which means death due to medical intervention! In other words, the day you visit a doctor is one of the most dangerous days of your life!

    Here is an article on this:


    Anyway, thanks again Ruchel. People like you are inspirations for me, for your community and for all around the world. Spread the message, its your responsibility.

    And smile! Its great being alive! 🙂


  • geart i feel it give me the power to be happy in any problem to listen to randy is loveing and i salute him and admire him and his will power thankyou for this shafin

  • When I was 23 years old, I was employed by Aramco in Saudi Arabia and holding a good position. Unfortunately, during exercise, I got injured and got admitted at Aramco Health Centre (The best hospital in Saudi at the time) I was put through every test and was kept in the hospital for about 3 month. Finally there was a medical conference on my case and the doctors diagnosed me as suffering from Syringo Miliya. They recommended that I be terminated and sent back to my country of origin. They gave me three months to live after which I will be no more. But, the head of our Division (Construction Supdt. Mr. Ed Witter) refused to accept their recommendation. He recommended that I be sent on medical leave and return to my job when I get cured. (see next coment for rest)

  • (Continued)
    On my arrival back home I was admitted in one of the best hospital, but after thorough investigation they also confirmed the previous diagnosis and gave me 3 months. I left the hospital telling the doctors that I don’t believe in their verdict and that I am going to get well and get back to my job! I don’t know what gave me this confidence and determination, but back home and undergoing some alternate medic al treatment I was completely cured in about couple months and I returned to Aramco and joined duties. My Division Supdt. promoted me to a higher position and I served to the best of my ability till I left Aramco. Now I am 81 years old and am in perfect health. May be this was a trial for me to test my faith and I sincerely hope I passed the test.
    John Thomas.

  • Thanks for posting this follow up video of Randy Pausch. I saw the earlier one and it was sad to hear some anger and fear in his voice which contrasted with the optimism and hope of the first video. Regardless, he was a brave man.

  • wonderful and beautiful but narrow in scope. so typically american and involving much deniaL OF BRUTAL REALITY. THE US IS A PSYCHOTIC CULTURE that created horoshima nagasaKI GATTLING GUNS and repeater rifles and adolph hitler massacred 135 million people and 6 million jews and pol pot massacred ov er 2 million to creaTE HIS AGRARIAN UTOPIA. the always happy happy happy syndrome is big business and not bp oil spills and vietnam. randy pausch lucked out and like all of us is mortal and died. for more details often mercillous and brutal please read my blogs in the himalayan times. as a child psychiatrist i see that randy is a product of the american terribly phony way of being. the theatre mask of lifes drama is extreme pain agony and ecstasy.there is no escape and ultimately of course we all die. the american way is a sick way inbuilt for profit greed and gain. that is absent from his wonderful lifestory. dr adam rosenblatt free free lance journalist.

  • there is a glaring paradox in randy pausch,s last lecture. my first thought is that he believed his doctors unlike other commentators who survived their horrific diagnosis. as an australian i know how powerful is the curse of pointing the bone by a witch doctor at an aborigine. he will die no matter what is done. my second thought why didnt he go to see john of god in brazil who has healed many fatal diseases. my third point as a longevitist it is my dream to live 3oo years and with todays clone and stem cell research this has become a possibility. liverpool university has received a 50 million pound grant to offer people over 50 years of age to receive many new cloned organs of the body which could of course include the pancreas. of course we must all eventually die and the big question where how and when. being happy happy happy in the phony american way of denial does not answer this very serious aspect of life and death. certainly unlike faust i reject the idea of making a pact with the devil to become immortal or believe in the lord jesus christ etc etc.

    • Hi, I 'm a Russian pianist living in U.S., I met Adam Rosenblatt , the Australian psychiatrist 17 years ago in Moscow, are you the same person? He is supposed to be around 60years old.

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