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The Eternal Pity: Reflections on Dying (The…

The Eternal Pity: Reflections on Dying (The Ethics of Everyday Life)

by Richard John Neuhaus

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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0268027579, Paperback)

Convinced that "every aspect of everyday life is ethically charged" and that academic ethics are too often "remote from life as lived," several of the country's leading conservative Christian ethical scholars launched a five-volume series of books to address "The Ethics of Everyday Life." Volume two, The Eternal Pity: Reflections on Dying, is edited by Richard John Neuhaus (editor of First Things and author, most recently, of Death on a Friday Afternoon). The book is an eclectic selection of readings regarding all manner of approaches to death and experiences of grief. It contains 26 readings from literature, poetry, and philosophy. Authors range from Montaigne to Tolstoy to Flannery O'Connor, and the book includes religious texts spanning a range marked by the Quran and the Book of Common Prayer. Neuhaus himself has provided a wide-ranging introduction to the anthology as well as a personal story about the enlivening effects of his own close brush with death. The Eternal Pity is organized in three sections, "Thinking About Dying," "When We Die," and "When Others Die," but this book should probably not be read systematically. Just mine the text for something that calls out to you--the message that grief can only be assuaged by pleasure ("The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam"), or a simple expression of resignation to death's arrival ("Do Not Go Gentle"). --Michael Joseph Gross

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:50 -0400)

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