How would you comfort a dying atheist? - Page 3Register Today!
- Jul 12, '09 by VivaLasViejasHow would I comfort a dying atheist? The same way I would comfort any other dying person...........by providing a hand to hold, a friendly voice, medication to control pain and anxiety, and as much dignity as possible.
- Jul 13, '09 by WarEagle4LifeThe same as other posters. Be there, hold a hand, find music that they like, lend my ear as they reflect back on their life. It's their experience and it should be on their terms, not what I personally believe.
- Jul 14, '09 by ElvishAn atheist patient? I would make sure they don't die alone - if they want me to hold their hand, or talk, or just be there, I'd do any or all of the above.
An atheist loved one? I would make sure they die knowing that they are loved. By me.
- Jul 15, '09 by softstormsThe one thing that is personal to all, no matter your believe or sprituality, is that at the moment you leave this life, it is all about you and no one else. You have no friend or family that is going with you at that time, no one to tell you what to say or do! It is just you and your faith, light or god at that point! So I think that anyone who is by your side at that time, be it health care worker or family, should just be there.....There is honor in a life well lived, even if not for a purpose we believe in, and peace in death after that life. What do you say to an aithist who is dieing? GO WITH GRACE.
- Jul 18, '09 by keithjonesi agree in practice with vivalasviejas and others, but its kind of like peacefully walking someone into a fire. i want to scream at the top of my lungs you are walking into a fire! I don't mind agreeing to disagree on a lot of things but the t-shirts say it best, eternity is long ... don't be wrong!
- Jul 18, '09 by ElvishKeith, I think I understand what you are saying. I'm a Christian too, and I believe in Hell as well. But...you and I do not know exactly what happens between God and man at the moment of death. And it is between them and God, not them and me at that moment. I have atheist relatives, and my job as someone who loves them is to make sure they die knowing that.
- Jul 18, '09 by oldtigerQuote from VivaLasViejasThis is my answer as well. It is not about us. It is about not having a personal agenda. It is about listening and bearing witness. When we are present for the patient, truly present, it is validation that that person is worthwhile and deserving of our time.How would I comfort a dying atheist? The same way I would comfort any other dying person...........by providing a hand to hold, a friendly voice, medication to control pain and anxiety, and as much dignity as possible.
Many people are spiritual without being religious. Even an atheist has deep needs and existential ponderings. As a Buddhist, I am considered atheistic, yet every moment of my life, my thoughts, intentions and motivations are spiritual.
With any patient, just be present. Listen. Bear witness.
- Dec 6, '11 by jadelpnThe goal would be for the dying patient to be peaceful. A hand to hold, a cool cloth. If it is a hospice patient and you have the information that patient is an atheist, I would ask how they want their plan of care to be. If they have made a decision on who the health care advocate is they want to make decisions for them, that may have been a conversation between them that you as the nurse were not involved in. Sometimes religion is made of different parts of a whole.
- Dec 10, '11 by CloveryAs an atheist, this is what would comfort me:
- everything possible will be done to ensure my pain is minimal
- my family & friends have adequate means for dealing with my death (e.g. they won't blame themselves, they understand my condition and medical choices, they have counsel if needed)
- my estate and burial wishes are in order and will be executed as i desire
- be there for me, don't let me be alone and afraid
- make sure i understand the procedures
- don't use phrases like "pass away" and don't tell me you're going to pray for me (even if you are)
- remind me that from death comes new life - I actually like the idea of being worm food
- there may be some food I'd want to taste for the last time, some song I'd like to hear
- it's okay if my family wants to pray, but I'd prefer that they'd do it silently or keep it to a minimum while in my room. Feel free to reinforce their religious beliefs and illusions of afterlife if it comforts them.
- if a family member would receive comfort from performing some kind of ritual, like sprinkling me with holy water, that's okay with me.
- remember that my main concern is about those I leave behind and how my death will affect them. I'm okay with my own death, as I believe I simply cease to be when my brain shuts down. The saddest thing to me about dying is that it causes pain to the living. So please, take care of my family.Last edit by Clovery on Dec 10, '11
- Dec 11, '11 by DixieRedHeadOh how hard. I respect everyone's wishes. But I genuinely wish everyone could know the peace that I know.