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Religious Understandings of a Good Death in Hospice by Harold Coward, Kelli I. Stajduhar

By Harold Coward, Kelli I. Stajduhar

2012 AJN (American magazine of Nursing) booklet of the yr Award within the Hospice and Palliative Care category

Explores how spiritual understandings of dying are skilled in hospice care.

In the Nineteen Sixties, English healthcare professional and devoted Christian Cicely Saunders brought a brand new means of treating the terminally sick that she referred to as “hospice care.” Emphasizing a holistic and compassionate method, her version ended in the quick development of a global hospice circulate. facets of the early hospice version that under pressure recognition to the spiritual dimensions of dying and death, whereas nonetheless famous and practiced, have built outdoors the purview of educational inquiry and consideration.  in the meantime, worldwide migration and multicultural diversification within the West have dramatically altered the profile of up to date hospice care. in line with those advancements, this quantity is the 1st to significantly discover how non secular understandings of dying are manifested and skilled in palliative care settings.

Contributors speak about how a “good demise” is conceived in the significant spiritual traditions of Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, chinese language faith, and Aboriginal spirituality. numerous real-world examples are awarded in case experiences of a Buddhist hospice middle in Thailand, Ugandan methods to death with HIV/AIDS, Punjabi extended-family hospice care, and pediatric palliative care. The paintings sheds new mild at the value of non secular trust and perform at the tip of lifestyles, on the many kinds non secular figuring out can take, and on the religious soreness that so usually accompanies the actual discomfort of the demise person.

“As the palliative care stream has grown, it has come in touch with all the world’s significant religions, which makes this a welcome book.” — International organization for Hospice & Palliative Care News

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Extra resources for Religious Understandings of a Good Death in Hospice Palliative Care

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Au/health-facts/overviews. (Accessed Aug. 30, 2009). Twycross, R. 1996. Hospice history interview. June 4. United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. 2009. International Migration Report 2005: A Global Assessment. htm. (Accessed Aug. 30, 2009). United Nations. 2007. Declaration on the rights of Indigenous Peoples. United Nations. pdf. (Accessed Aug. 30, 2009). Vanstone, W. H. 1982. The stature of waiting. London: Darton, Longman, and Todd. Wald, F. 1996. Hospice history interview.

Other popular temple and home practices include the repeated recitation of short prayers or sacred texts (mantras), chanting the names of God (japa or kirtana), and the singing of hymns of devotion (bhajana). “Like a Ripe Fruit Separating Effortlessly from Its Vine” 31 Hindu Theological Streams Hindu understandings of a good death in hospice care are deeply informed by the particular theology that shapes the meaning of life and the after‑ life. With the risks of generalization, we may identify three interwoven theological streams, often difficult to separate in practice (Hopkins 1992).

Having a murti in the hospice room is one of the ways the dying Hindu receives the comfort of knowing that God is close through a visual presence. Sacred sound is complemented by sacred sight. Third, we must note the desire for a good death in the midst of sacred ritual expressed in the desire for the tulasi leaf. Tulasi leaves are offered to God as Vishnu (Krishna is a form of Vishnu) and returned to the worshipper as a consecrated gift (prasada). Along with a murti, a dying Hindu may wish to have other items that are used in daily worship (puja), such as flowers (pushpa), incense (dhupa), and light (dipa), a rosary (mala), and sandalwood paste (chandana).

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