To live life fully and die serenely—surely we all share these goals, so inextricably entwined. Yet a spiritual dimension is too often lacking in the attitudes, circumstances, and rites of death in modern society. Kapleau explores the subject of death and dying on a deeply personal level, interweaving the writings of Western religions with insights from his own Zen practice, and offers practical advice for the dying and their families.
"Kapleau has created a profound and practical book that will appeal to people of all religious backgrounds."—Branches of Light
"This is an important and profoundly useful guide for living and dying, reflecting the long experience and realization of the esteemed Zen Buddhist elder Roshi Kapleau. Offering a nonsectarian perspective on being with dying, this clearly written book makes death a truly spiritual experience."—Joan Halifax, author of The Fruitful Darkness
"Philip Kapleau's fine book expands on his seminal work The Wheel of Life and Death, which has supported so many in the early search for the sources of what became the conscious dying movement. It is with a deep gassbo (bow) that we welcome this new work by an elder on the path we all tread. Thank you Philip."—Stephen Levince, author of Gradual Awakening and A Year to Live: How to Live This Year As If It Were Your Last
"Kapleau draws so effectively and knowledgeably on his own and other religious traditions, but in a manner that is earthy, so ordinary, so enmeshed in what real living and real dying involve. The book is very accurately subtitled 'practical and spiritual guide' because it is practical, almost a handbook, not only for dealing with the painful loss of a friend but with the shock of finitude and the taste of mortality such an occurrence inevitably evokes in ourselves. I am deeply grateful for this serene, mature, and credible book. It bespeaks a life spent probing the deep things of the spirit."—Harvey Cox, Harvard Divinity School