Saturday, 7 February 2015


Comforting Thoughts About Death That Have Nothing to Do with GodComforting Thoughts About Death That Have Nothing to Do with God by Greta Christina
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

BOOK DESCRIPTION: If you don't believe in God or an afterlife -- how do you cope with death? Accepting death is never easy. But we don't need religion to find peace, comfort, and solace in the face of death. In this mini-book collection of essays, prominent atheist author Greta Christina offers secular ways to handle your own mortality and the death of those you love. Blending intensely personal experience with compassionate, down-to-earth wisdom, Christina ("Coming Out Atheist" and "Why Are You Atheists So Angry?") explores a variety of natural philosophies of death. She shows how reality can be more comforting than illusion, shatters the myth that there are no atheists in foxholes -- and tells how humanism got her through one of the grimmest times of her life.

MY REVIEW: Despite the title, there is a good deal of talk about God in this book! One of the issues I have with a lot of atheist books is that they seem to continually define their perspective contra theism. So while there are quite a few interesting (and comforting, depending on who you are) thoughts about death in this book, too much of it is arguing against theistic ideas or criticising the way theists may communicate with atheists about death and grieving. What I'd like to see is a book that makes no reference to religion but provides a discussion about death, grieving and journeying through toward and/or through these experiences that is comforting. Having said that, the book is worth reading to get a sense of what options there may be for approaching death and grieving from a secular perspective. Christina rights with sensitivity and warmth and it is timely that a calm conversation begins amongst secularists about one of the great certainties of life -- death.

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