A Good End
Summary: A Good End podcast is a new approach to the Jewish conversation around death and dying, made possible by 70 Faces Media and UJA Federation of New York.
Learn more about Jewish burial customs as members of the Queens Chevra Kadisha - an organization of Jewish men and women who prepare the bodies of deceased Jews for burial according to Jewish tradition - prepare a body for burial in a local funeral home. Then visit Ed Bixby’s green burial cemetery and nature preserve and learn more about the growing trend of green funerals and how they cross over with Jewish traditions.
How do you speak to a loved one who is nearing death? What do you say when a terminally ill patient or family member asks “Why?” How do you plan for your own version of “A Good End?” Rabbis, chaplains, a bereavement counselor, a social worker, and a teenager share their stories and they lessons they’ve learned.
What does Judaism have to say about the right to die? A majority of trradtional and contemporary Jewish sources prohibit assisted suicide as well as passive euthanasia - i.e. withholding care. Learn how rabbbis, hospital chaplains, and doctors help patients accept the realities of their illnesses and find peace in their final days.
Many people believe that hospice is about helping someone die. Hospice care providers will tell you that it is actually about helping someone live. Music therapy provides hospice patients and their families with social, spiritual, and emotional support and has been proven to help decrease pain perception. Listen to music therapist, Meredith Ferrel’s home visit with Albert, a hospice patient with lymphoma, and to the music they create together.
The Jewish values of prolonging life, but not prolonging suffering come face to face with modern technologies such as artificial nutrition, hydration, and intubation. In this episode, a rabbi, doctor, social worker, and biomedical ethicist discuss the ways they help patients and families navigate the difficult issues that arise toward the end of life.
No one wants to think about their own death - or the death of a loved one, but these experiences can be meaningful and even life-affirming. Rabbi Joy Levitt shares the experience of discussing end-of-life care planning with her 90-year-old mother and the surprising and touching discoveries she made along the way.
Getting adults to talk about death is difficult. So, what if we started sooner? Some schools are beginning to include Death Education as part of their curriculum. Sasha Zitter relates her experience with Death Ed alongside her high school peers. Learn how initiatives like Death Over Dinner and Death Over Dinner Jewish Edition are getting Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers, and Millenials to discuss death in carefully crafted, intimate group settings.
A new Jewish conversation around death and dying in the 21st century.