Explores the end-of-life spiritual needs of people who do not identify with traditional religions.
This groundbreaking book addresses the spiritual aspect of hospice care for those who do not fit easily within traditional religious beliefs and categories. A companion volume to Religious Understandings of a Good Death in Hospice Palliative Care, this work also advocates for renewed attention to the spiritual, the often overlooked element of hospice care. Drawing on data from clinical case studies, new sociological research, and the perspectives of agnostics, atheists, those who emphasize the spiritual rather than institutional dimensions of a traditional religion, and the rapidly growing cohort of those who describe themselves as spiritual-but-not-religious, the contributors to this volume interpret the shift from predominantly Christian-based pastoral services to a new approach to "the spiritual" shaped by the increasing diversity of Western societies and new understandings of the nature of secular society. How do we speak of this "spirituality?" How do we use it in a way that enables caregivers to assist patients? Clinicians and policy makers will appreciate the book's practical recommendations regarding staff roles, training, and resource allocation. General readers will be moved by the persuasive call for greater religious and spiritual literacy at every level of health care in order to respond to the full spectrum of human needs in life and in death.
Paul Bramadat is Director of the Centre for Studies in Religion and Society and Associate Professor of Religious Studies and History at the University of Victoria. He is the author of The Church on the World's Turf: An Evangelical Christian Group at a Secular University. Harold Coward is Professor Emeritus of History and Founding Director of the Centre for Studies in Religion and Society at the University of Victoria. He is the author of The Perfectibility of Human Nature in Eastern and Western Thought, also published by SUNY Press. Kelli I. Stajduhar is Associate Professor at the School of Nursing and Centre on Aging at the University of Victoria. She is the coeditor (with Harold Coward) of Religious Understandings of a Good Death in Hospice Palliative Care, also published by SUNY Press.
"…well written and … addresses a very important issue—how can we best manage spiritual distress in patients who have no religious attachments or beliefs?" — IAHPC News
"These three University of Victoria–based scholars are to be commended for helping medical and care staff overcome widespread religious illiteracy. " — Vancouver Sun
"As informed and informative as it is thoughtful and thought-provoking, Spirituality in Hospice Palliative Care is a welcome and highly recommended contribution to professional and academic library Religious/Spirituality Studies and Health/Medicine Hospice Care reference collections and supplemental reading lists. " — Midwest Book Review
"Spirituality in Hospice Palliative Care provides a great deal of information about the topic from the perspectives of several disciplines, most strongly nursing and pastoral care/chaplaincy within Western culture. It also provides a useful historical synthesis of the hospice movement and of nursing's role in hospice palliative care. " — Carla Sofka, coeditor of Dying, Death, and Grief in an Online Universe: For Counselors and Educators
"This book provides a valuable resource for nurses, physicians, chaplains, hospice workers, and academics to better understand and provide culturally competent care at the end of life. " — Swasti Bhattacharyya, author of Magical Progeny, Modern Technology: A Hindu Bioethics of Assisted Reproductive Technology