From Helpful Media: 'It's a Matter of Life and Death: Growing...

Noted author of the "Fifty Classics" series,Tom Butler-Bowdon says this on the cover of "It’s a Matter of Life and Death: Growing Up in a Funeral Home and What I Learned Since" by Lawrence J. Danks: "Larry's book combines positive psychology, motivation and memoir to provide a powerful reminder to really live while we are alive, regretting nothing. His lively reminiscences of growing up in a funeral home are not morbid, but lie in the tradition of a Zen Buddhist meditation on death: facing the great uncertainty and inevitability of death, we are reminded of the opportunity to love, and most of all, to be grateful for everything."

"It's a Matter of Life and Death" is intended to help anyone who is

  • seeking happiness
  • curious about life in a funeral home
  • facing a serious illness or knows someone else who is grieving and working their way back toward recovery
  • a health care provider, counselor, or practitioner in the funeral industry trying to help others cope with illness or loss

Samples from over eighty topics include:

Part I: Seeking Happiness -~ Finding Happiness: It's about finding true gratification,not hedonism or smiley faces.

  • Death Teaches Us to Value Life Even More
  • Take the Long View: Plan to Live to Be One Hundred
  • It's Never Too Late To Make a Difference in Your Life and in Those of Others
  • Get Better Sleep: It Can Make a Big Difference
  • Advice from Courageous Survivors and Physicians For Those Facing a Terminal Illness
  • Your Thinking Probably Needs Some Improvement
  • Mid-Life Crisis is Not a Crisis

Part II - Growing Up in a Funeral Home

  • My Father, the Coroner
  • My Sister, the Embalmer
  • My Parent's Faith
  • The Importance of Humility
  • The Medical Examiner's Office and Autopsies
  • The Critical Importance of Having a Will
  • Do Funeral Directors Charge Too Much?
  • Life in the Funeral Home
  • The Condition of the Body
  • Cosmetic and Presentation Skills

Part III - The Takeaway from Seven Decades

  • Drug Abuse
  • Giving the Ego a Rest
  • Hospice Care - It Should Often Start Sooner
  • Finding What to Say at Viewings and Funerals
  • Eulogies Can Be Excellent Teachers
  • After Things Are Over, It Can Get Awfully Lonely
  • Advice from a Grief Counselor on Handling Grief and Loss and Moving Ahead
  • Thinking We Understand Death
  • People Who Die Before Their Time
  • Honoring Those Who Died, but Honoring Yourself Too
  • Life after the Death of a Partner

Danks says, “No one clamors to read about death and funerals,but people have a curiosity about what happens in funeral homes – even though they don’t necessarily want to live in one. A frequent question I got as a boy was, ‘How can you live there?’ It was easy. My sister and I never knew anything different than living over one. It was a blessing though. It taught us about life and about what truly matters – finding happiness and peace.”

Related Articles View More Books Stories

More Hot Stories For You

Before you go...

Like Us On Facebook
Follow Us On Twitter
Follow Us On Instagram instagram