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Tuesday, 19 May 2009

When the Reaper calls

Half of Britons are afraid – in one way or another – of dying.

According to a report discussed by Christian Today, a fifth fear the way they will die and death itself; nearly a third said they fear the way they’ll die but not death itself.

The research was carried out the think tank Theos, whose director, Paul Woolley, says the findings indicate a need to discuss death more.

Damn right!

But he, presumably, would not like it discussed in a sensible, freethinking way that would allow us also to consider how we’d prefer to go, and when.

“The proportion of people fearing death in society could be explained by the breakdown of an overarching religious narrative in the culture,” he says. “It might also have something to do with the lack of experience people have in dealing with death.”

Religious narrative? That we go to heaven (or, in some religionists’ idea of things, hell)?

It’s only a “religious narrative” that can make people afraid of death itself, i.e. being dead. Anyone who believes that death is just the absence of life, a blank, will not fear death itself.

As for the manner of death, we need to embrace the idea of a good exit strategy, and it’s largely the religious lobby that is holding that back.
Related link:
Dying with dignity – and those who want to prevent it

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