Death: Enemy or Friend?


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Since for humans to have life means to know that death is inevitable, learning how to die is a lesson we all must learn. In this endeavor our culture gives us conflicting si gnals about our dying. On the one hand, death is understood to be an enemy of our control over our fate, and is, therefore, an indignity; and on the other hand, death is understood as a natural part of life, a friend whose coming we should embrace. This p resentation deals with the tension between death as friend and death as foe from the perspectives of the narratives of dying patients, providing insights on learning to "die well." Dr. Meilaender holds the Board of Directors Chair in Christian E thics at Valparaiso University. He is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Religious Ethics.

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