In 2 Volumes. — Macmillan Reference USA, 2003. — 1094 p.Covering all aspects of death and dying, the two-volume set also provides a deep historical and cross-cultural perspective through the ages. Article coverage includes: AIDS; children; cremation; communication with the dead; grief and mourning across cultures; life expectancy; widows; and much more. The Encyclopedia also includes 150 illustrations; an appendix providing general overviews and contact information for nearly 80 organizations; and a comprehensive index.The Macmillan Encyclopedia of Death and Dying is a contribution to the understanding of life. Scientists and poets have long recognized that life and death are so intimately entwined that knowledge of one requires knowledge of the other. The Old Testament observes that “all flesh is as grass.” Religions have addressed the question of how one should live with the awareness of inevitable death. Often the answer has been based upon the vision of a life beyond death. Societies have developed systems of belief and practice to help their people cope with the prospect of death and the sorrow of grief. Children are often puzzled by the curious fact that flowers fade and animals stop moving. This incipient realization of mortality eventually becomes a significant part of the adult’s worldview in which hope contests with fear, and faith with doubt.
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