Sacred Dying:
Creating Rituals for Embracing the End of Life

In Cemeteries on October 4, 2009 at 7:48 pm

by Megory Anderson
I just finished this captivating and important book about attending the dying. Ms. Anderson runs the Sacred Dying Foundation in San Francisco.
The Sacred Dying Foundation is dedicated to challenging the way our society experiences death and dying. The Foundation’s primary goal is to return the sacred to the act of dying by serving those who are at the end-of-life.

The Sacred Dying Foundation is also committed to changing the paradigm of how we approach death as a whole through educating the public on new models of death and dying for our society.

Ms. Anderson helps bring sacred space and ritual to the dying, providing spiritual presence. She’s knowledgable in many spiritual practices of the world. But more importantly, I think, she is intuitive, personal and not doctrinaire. She is able to recognize even those small moments where acknowledgment of the dying’s wishes and feelings can make a profound difference in the ease of the end-of-life transition. Vigiling, being with a person through their dying and after is a centerpiece of the foundation’s practice.

So while this organization is not about cemeteries, it is part of the spectrum (the beginning really) of how we deal with death, It’s about creating sacred personal spaces for the dying and their families. Which is what a good cemetery should also do in physical form.

This is an important and fulfilling book and concept for everyone.

  1. Your blog is inspirational…just, I think, what you hoped it might be. This subject is on my mind as mom will not be with us much longer and she will be buried at a place I have never visited and am not likely to visit very often even after she resides next to dad there. How wonderful it would be if she could rest somewhere that all of us in our family would want to visit for the sheer beauty and joy of the place.
    May I suggest the inclusion of parks and parklands around the bay area that overlook or are touched by the water as possible inspirations for cemetaries?

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