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WINNER 2015 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award (Mind, Body, Spirit category) The Divine Art of Dying explores the unique moment when seriously ill people choose to turn toward death. Combining personal stories with solid research on palliative and hospice care, it provides a well-integrated look at the spiritual dimensions of living fully when death is near. Filled with insights from the world’s great wisdom traditions along with references from literature, movies, and current culture, it helps identify the life decisions the dying one and his or her loved ones must make, and what their caregivers can expect.
Karen Speerstra was a writer, editor, and the author of ten books, including the Nautilus gold medal winner, Sophia: the Feminine Face of God. She passed away in November 2013 shortly after completing the manuscript for The Divine Art of Dying.
Herbert Anderson is a Research Professor of Practical Theology at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley and a member of the Core Doctoral Faculty of the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. He has taught a course on dying and grieving every year since 1972. He is the author or coauthor of over 90 articles and 13 books on topics such as death and grief, family living, ritual and narrative, empathy, and men’s spirituality. He lives in Sonoma, CA.
Dr. Ira Byock is one of the foremost palliative-care physicians in the country and an expert in end of life decisions. His book Dying Well has sold over 50,000 copies. He served as the president of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and is currently the director of Palliative Medicine at Dartmouth- Hitchcock Medical Center. He lives in Enfield, NH.
Table of Contents
Foreword: Dr. Ira Byock Introduction Part 1. Taking the Turn Toward Death 1. The Porch Light is On 2. Hospice at the Door 3. Decisions, Decisions, Decisions 4. Facing Finality 5. Peering Into the Dark On Transparency Part 2. Orienting Toward Death 6. The Blessed Ambiguity of Dying 7. How Do We Talk About Death? 8. Taking Charge in the Midst of Chaos 9. Trusting the Capacity of Others 10. Hurry Up and Wait On Stewarding Our Resources Part 3. Living Until We Die 11. Celebrating the Ordinary 12. Sharing Memories; Telling Stories 13. Letting Go 14. The Joy of Gift-Giving 15. How Are You Feeling? On Gratitude Part 4. Dying into life 16. The Goodness of Grieving 17. Rituals for the Journey 18. When Death Draws Near 19. Living in the Mystery Epilogue Resources Index