Death Dying

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					     Death & Dying
            Presented By:
  Lisa Anderson          Joe Salonga
Patricia Carberry       Jennie Sones
Amanda Edwards         Sandra Truman
 Joseph Mendler     Lilia Vandermeijden
           What Is To Follow?

• The physical aspects of death
• Private mourning
• Various cultural perspectives
  –   Catholic         –   Slavic
  –   Jewish           –   Aztec
  –   Buddhist         –   Egyptian
  –   Hindu            –   American
  –   Navajo Indians
    When The Heart Stops Beating...
• Oxygen deprivation occurs
• Followed by brain death within three minutes
• Blood drains from capillaries
• Build up of lactic acid and rigor mortis with
  three hours after death
• Decomposition
The long and natural process of the body
  being broken down into simple compounds.
• Bacteria begins the internal process
• Maggots begin the external process
• Putrefaction
• Various insects
  – Beetles, mites, wasps, moths   Photo R. Major
           Death Is Declared
• Certified by a medical officer with a death
• Time and cause of death
• Coroner
• Autopsy
       Preparation Of The Body
• Depending upon religion, any of the
  following may occur
  –   Body is washed
  –   Body is bandaged
  –   Cavities are filled
  –   Embalming
  –   Makeup
  –   Body bag or casket
  –   Refrigeration
         Disposal Of The Body
• Depending upon religion, any of the
  following may occur
  –   Exposure
  –   Cremation
  –   Burial
  –   Eco-friendly
             Private Mourning

•   An unstable process     •   Disorganized
•   A lonely journey        •   A lot of crying
•   Self doubt              •   Exhausted
•   Intense emotion         •   Unable to sleep
•   Detached from life      •   Vivid dreams or
•   Unable to concentrate       nightmares
       Coping With The Grief
• Support groups
• Online sites on how to cope
• Therapists who specialize in grief
• Family and friends
    Various Cultural Perspectives
•   Catholic         •   Slavic
•   Jewish           •   Aztec
•   Buddhist         •   Egyptian
•   Hindu            •   American
•   Navajo Indians
              Catholic Beliefs
•   Eternal life
•   Resurrection of the body
•   Burial takes place in a grave
•   Cremation is accepted in some
          Catholic Burial Customs
•   Meeting with the family to prepare the funeral
•   Prayer held for the family at the funeral home
•   A prayer service held for the community
•   The main funeral is celebrated at the church
•   Prayers of committal take place at the cemetery
             Jewish Traditions
•   A Rabbi delivers a eulogy
•   A Cantor sings
•   Family and friends deliver memorials
•   Open caskets are not acceptable
•   Cremation is not acceptable, except for
    Reform Jews
            Buddhist Beliefs
• Individuals pass through many
  reincarnations until they are liberated.
• Liberation is nirvana
• Funeral ceremonies consist of three
  – Sharing
  – The practice of good conduct
  – Developing a calm mind (Meditation)
     Buddhist Burial Customs
• Often there will be three ceremonies:
  – Service at the home of the bereaved
  – Service at a funeral home
  – After burial a service is performed either at the
    home of the bereaved or at a temple
• Always an open casket
• Quotes are given from the Sutra (collected
  sayings of the Buddha
             Hindu Beliefs
• The individual soul has no beginning and no
• The reincarnation depends on the karma of
  the person
• Once the true nature of reality is realized,
  through many reincarnations, the individual
  soul is lost upon death and becomes one
  with Brahman, the one.
       Hindu Burial Customs
• White clothing is customary at the funeral
• Hindu priests or senior male members of the
  family are the major officials
• Cremation is practiced
• A last food offering is symbolically made
  to the deceased before cremation
• The cremation is held at home
          Navajo Indian Beliefs
• Life is a constant cycle of growth, death and new
• This cycle flows in a circular motion - all things
  must begin and end at the same point
• There is no afterlife
• All but the very young and old generate evil
• Hooting of an owl forebodes death
• Coyote signifies the imminence of evil or death
  Navajo Indian Burial Preparation
• Items to be buried with the body are gathered
• The dying person is taken to a special dwelling
  to await death
• Four mourners are hired to prepare the body
  – The body is bathed and dressed in fine clothing
  – A Navajo blanket is placed with the deceased.
  – Purification rituals are performed
         Navajo Burial Customs
• Burial takes place on or after the fourth day
• After grave is dug, no footprints can be left
• Once body is buried, all tools used are destroyed
• After the burial, mourners return to the village
  by a different path, so the dead could not follow
• Today’s practices are similar to mainstream
  American funerals, although the spiritual beliefs
  remain intact
               Slavic Beliefs
• Death is a separation of the soul from the body
• After death, the soul is judged based on its
  behavior, character, and communication with
• This judgement determines whether the soul
  travels to heaven or hell
  Slavic Death Signs and Omens
• Dogs howling or owls screeching at night
  means someone nearby will die
• If a bird flies into a house, someone in that
  house will die
• A seriously ill person who suddenly
  undergoes a state of euphoria will soon die
• Death will come soon to a dying person
  who asks for special food or drink
        Slavic Burial Preparation
• One prepares for their own funeral
• When a person dies, all mirrors are covered with
• After death, eyes and mouth of the deceased are
• Neighbors are relatives that were not close to the
  deceased wash and dress the body
• Various wakes are held over the body to protect
  against evil spirits
• Young children are asked to touch the feet of the
          Slavic Burial Customs
• The coffin remains open during the ceremony
• Relatives pay their respects
• The pallbearers are male relatives
• The coffin is placed in the grave so that the feet
  point toward the cross
• All guests throw three
  handfuls of earth on the coffin
• The grave is decorated with
  flowers and wreaths
                Aztec Death Rituals

“To the Aztecs death was not an altogether abhorrent idea, being little
  more than an incident in the continuity between this life and the next”
               Aztec Beliefs
• It is the manner of death, not the persons’
  behavior in life that decides the individual’s
  final destination in the afterlife
• Three destinations exist for the afterlife:
  – Paradise of the sun
  – Terrestrial paradise
  – The underworld
           Paradise of the Sun
• Warriors who died in battle or were sacrificed
  assemble to greet the sun as it rises by beating
  upon their shields
• Women who died during childbirth escort the
  sun to the horizon
• Therefore, the sun is eternally kept in motion
  through the help of the warriors at the rise and
  the women at the set
          Terrestrial Paradise
• Those who die of the following are sent to
  this paradise
  – Dropsy, gout, scabies, leprosy, drowning, or
    struck by lightning
• This is the home of the rain god
• No cremation takes place in this case
• In loser classes, the burial takes place under
  the floor of the house, to maintain
  connection with the living
           The Underworld
• Those that die of natural death or old age
  are sent to this destination
• The underworld consists of a long road full
  of perils and menaces
• This means of dying is not perceived as
  desirable and honorable
Death of a Lord
     • The deceased is shrouded in a
       squatting position, then cremated
     • The photo portrays fire on top of
       the funerary bundle
     • A slave is sacrificed by
       extracting his heart to
       accompany the lord in the
     • Wives were buried alive to serve
       their husbands in the afterlife
            Death of a Merchant
• He is cremated and
  buried with his wealth
• Feline skins are placed
  around him, with his
  possessions, to enable
  him to continue his
  occupation in his final
  resting place
            Egyptian Beliefs
• They were sons of the sun god Ra (or Re)
• The pyramids were built to honor the gods
• The body’s life force or spirit, called the ka,
  lived on after death
• To keep the life force happy, bodies are
  mummified after death
• Only those free from sin can enjoy the
• The brain is removed through the nose
• The innards are removed through an incision
  on the left side
• The body and major organs are placed in
  occurring salt, called natron for a month
• This blackens the skin, so workers would dye
  the body red for men and yellow for women
• Families would provide linen that had been
  soaked in herbs to be placed in the empty body
         Embalming, cont...
• The organs would be wrapped and either
  placed back in the body or in special
  containers in the tomb chamber
• The body and limbs were wrapped in cloth
  strips and then wrapped in a shroud
• Another layer of cloth wrapped the entire
  body, giving the appearance of a mummy
• Included in the wrappings were good luck
  charms and trinkets
      Egyptian Burial Customs
• The body was placed in a sarcophagus, or a
  stone coffin
• Accompanying the body in the tomb was a
  portrait statue in case the body dissipated
• Paintings on the inner walls and ceiling were
  done to ensure happiness of the ka
• The chamber is then closed off after the burial
The American Definition of Death
• The irreversible cessation of life and the
  imminent approach of death as we know it
• When the vital functions cease breathing
  and circulation
• A modern view of death is the death of the
     American Outlook of Death
• Death sells newspapers and insurance policies
• Creates plots for television programs
• Acts as a crime deterrent
• It can also measure the adequacy of social life,
  such as national homicide rates
• Death moves from a cultural order, to an
  institutional order, and finally to an individual
   Facing Mortality in America
• In general, it is a taboo subject
• Medical professionals demonstrate that
  dying can be a rich experience for both, the
  terminally ill and their loved ones
• Living wills and advance directives are
  becoming more common everyday
• They prevent disputes among families if
  treatment ever becomes an issue
   The Fear of Death and Dying
• The fear seems to be based on two things:
  – The presence and certainty of death
  – And the uncertainty of what follows
• Material welfare is used as a distracting
  ploy to see death as an objective event
• Such approaches keep death outside of
  ourselves, so we know death only as
  observers, not participants
     American Burial Preparation
• The most popular burials are those of cremation
  or embalming, then either buried, stored in
  mausoleum, scattered or destroyed
• Cremation allows a less personal representation
  of the deceased
• The body can also be buried in a casket and laid
  to rest in a cemetery, with a tombstone placed
  over the grave
   Immortality American Style
• The Alcor Life Extension Foundation
  – Cryonic preservation
  – Freezing people for possible awakening later on
    or possible future cloning
• Cards From Beyond
  – Offer the ability to send cards to loved ones
    after their death
          Immortality, cont...
• Loving Pup, Inc.
  – Leave family and friends an e-mail to be
    delivered after you pass on
• AT&T Labs’ Natural Voices
  – Type your message and the voice cloning
    allows the dead to utter your words
• The Physical Aspects of Death
• The Physical Aspects of Death, cont…
  – Books:
  – Modern Mummies, Christine Quigley, Mc Farland and Company,
  – What is Death: A Scientist Looks at the Cycle of Life, Tyler Volk,
    John Wiley and Sons, 2002
  – Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Mary Roach, W.W.
    Norton And Company, 2003
  – One Foot in the Grave: Secrets of a Cemetery Sexton, Chad
    Daybell, Cedar Fort, 2001
• Private Mourning, Catholic, Jewish, Buddhist, and
  Hindu Perspectives
• Navajo Indian Perspective
• Navajo Perspective, cont…
  – Books:
  – Native American Worldviews, Jerry Gill, 2002
  – The Elements of Native American Traditions, Arthur Versluis,
  – A Native American Encyclopedia, Barry M. Pritzker, 2000
• Slavic Perspective
  – Books:
  – Chelovek pered likom smerti, Aries Philippe, Moscow, 1992
  – Reinterpreting Russia, Geoffrey Hosking, 1999
  – Death and Bereavement Across Cultures, Colin Murray Parkes,
  – In Search of the Immortals: Mummies, Death and the Afterlife,
    Howard Reid, 2001
• Aztec Perspective
  – Soon to be added
• Egyptian Perspective
  – soon to be added
• American Perspective
  – Encyclopedia of Death and Dying, Howarth, Glennys, and
    Oliver Leaman, eds., 2001
  – Understanding Dying, Death, and Bereavement, Michael R.
    Leming and George E. Dickinson
  – Death and the Afterlife: A Cultural Encyclopedia, Richard
    Taylor, 2000

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