The Divine Art of Dying, Second Edition:Living Well to Life's End
The Divine Art of Dying explores the time when individuals facing a life-limiting illness make critical decisions about how they will live until they die. Authors Karen Speerstra and Herbert Anderson teamed up to write this book shortly before Speerstra's death. Their hope was that this book would be a gift to help people who are irreversibly ill (and their friends and family) navigate the perilous journey to the point at which one decides to discontinue curative treatment and turn toward death. The book includes reflections from Speerstra's hospice journal and essays written jointly by Speerstra and Anderson on themes that include learning to wait, letting go, giving gifts, and telling stories.
Karen's experiential and moving reflections are woven together with Anderson's pastoral insights gleaned from years of teaching, writing, and lecturing on death, dying, and bereavement, as well as practicing hospital chaplaincy and pastoral care. Together they have created a deeply profound and practical book that aims to empower people who are dying to live as fully as they can until life's end, and to help those who care for them to share this journey with compassion and hope.
Several reflections by Speerstra's friends and family are included along with sidebars describing "divine-human virtues." Suggestions for caregivers are provided at the end of each chapter.