Sacred Dying: Creating Rituals for Embracing the End of Life

Overview


Death may be inevitable, but dying alone or in fear does not have to be. Sacred Dying is theologian Megory Anderson's essential testimonial and handbook for creating a dignified, peaceful, and more sacred end to life. Anderson includes a section with many prayers and poems from various traditions, and shows how to use personalized and creative rituals to help those dying prepare for their death and to bring a sense of peace, reconciliation, and acceptance both to themselves and to the loved ones they leave ...
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Overview


Death may be inevitable, but dying alone or in fear does not have to be. Sacred Dying is theologian Megory Anderson's essential testimonial and handbook for creating a dignified, peaceful, and more sacred end to life. Anderson includes a section with many prayers and poems from various traditions, and shows how to use personalized and creative rituals to help those dying prepare for their death and to bring a sense of peace, reconciliation, and acceptance both to themselves and to the loved ones they leave behind. She discusses all aspects of this final transition, including how to help a dying person put "unfinished business" to rest; using massage to help the dying let go of his or her body; and how to use music to help the dying focus on specific times, places, or events. For this first-ever paperback edition, she adds a chapter on what can be done after death to help move the soul along. Intended for those who are going through the death of a loved one as well as those facing death personally, Sacred Dying facilitates creating a setting where death is experienced as it should be—with honor, respect, and sacredness.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Anderson, a theologian who founded the Sacred Dying Foundation, has written a guide for people facing the death of a loved one. To that end, she relates stories of her work and discusses rituals that help the dying find peace and the survivors to go on with their lives. These rituals include prayer, creating sacred space, using music, listening, and dealing with the past. Quotations from Christian and Jewish sources as well as The Tibetan Book of the Dead illuminate the text. Not just a guide, this is also a useful reference work: the appendix contains prayers and poems about dying from a variety of traditions, and the bibliography, which is over 20 pages long, covers such categories as general works, care giving and hospice, rituals, and afterlife as well as the various religious traditions. Recommended especially for public libraries and patrons wanting resources for action and solace; other libraries and resource centers may purchase accordingly. Naomi E. Hafter, Broward Cty. P.L., Ft. Lauderdale, FL Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781569244340
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 12/15/2003
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 637,514
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Megory Anderson is a theologian, author, educator, and liturgist. Her personal encounter with a life-threatening illness led her to work with people who are facing death. Today, she runs a nonprofit Sacred Dying Foundation in San Francisco, and frequently writes on the topic of sacred dying.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Foreword by Thomas Moore
Preface

1. Journey with the Dying
2. Returning the Sacred to the Act of Dying
3. Rituals for Embracing the End of Life
4. Traditions: Incorporating Religious Rituals
5. Centering and Preparation: Sacred Space/Sacred Participants
6. Letting Go of Burdens: Rituals to Release the Emotions
7. Letting Go of the Body: Rituals to Comfort and Release
8. Music: Healing and Transcendence
9. When Loved Ones Are Not Present
10. Dying Alone
11. Intentional Death: Ending Life Support
12. After Death: Until the Funeral

Appendix: Scriptures and Sacred Texts, Poetry, Readings, and Prayers
Biography and Recommended Readings
Index
Permissions and Acknowledgments

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