Recommended viewing for those interested in end-of-life issues, especially the right to die on one’s own terms, the work of death doulas and the practice of “living funerals” (or FUN-erals, in this story). Moon Manor is a true-ish comedy-drama based on the life and philosophies of Jimmy Carozzo, who also stars in the movie as … Read moreMoon Manor
Masked vigilante/private investigator Jonathan Preest, the last atheist in Meanwhile City, prowls a literal Marketplace of Religions in this scene from the flawed but fascinating 2008 movie Franklyn.
I read this story sometime in the 1980s and I haven’t been able to recall, nor trace its provenance. I’m retelling it here as best as I remember it, because I think that it contains a seed of wisdom regarding the Way of Life and Death. There was once a wise and aged monk who … Read moreThe Monk, the Disciple and the Temple Gates at Midnight
The leaves were falling from the great oak at the meadow’s edge. They were falling from all the trees. One branch of the oak reached high above the others and stretched far out over the meadow. Two leaves clung to its tip. “It isn’t the way it used to be,” said one leaf to the … Read moreBambi, Chapter Eight (1923)
Suicidal seventeen year old media whiz Archie Williams (played by Gabriel Sunday) visits poet/filmmaker Jesse Gabriel Vargas (David Carradine) in this scene from the 2011 movie Archie’s Final Project, also known as My Suicide. Which self do you want to kill? It would be a shame to off all of them.
In the Death Issue of The Nib Magazine, two dozen artists from around the world offer their perspectives on mortality, from a heartfelt and poignant memoir of infant loss to an exploration of the cultural relationship between Halloween and Dia de los Muertos. Here’s a generous assortment of excerpts and below are some sample panels … Read moreThe Death Issue
In this touching scene from the popular TV series Orange is the New Black, Brook Soso (played by actress Kimiko Glenn) unveils a new form of library in memory of her late girlfriend Poussey Washington (Samira Wiley), who had been the prison librarian. At this point in the story the inmates have taken over control … Read moreThe Poussey Memorial Community Library
Gore Vidal’s 1954 dystopian satire Messiah is the story of a religious movement that forms around a charismatic undertaker named John Cave. Cave’s central message is, simply and profoundly, that people should not be afraid of death; not because they could look forward to an afterlife of eternal bliss in paradise, but rather because oblivion … Read moreCavesword: A Nontheistic Religion of Radical Death Acceptance in Gore Vidal’s “Messiah”
The fantasy cultures in George R. R. Martin’s epic Game of Thrones stories have conjured a rich diversity of religious perspectives. The journey of Arya Stark, noblewoman by birth and killer by temperament, leads her to the House of Black and White, which is the temple, headquarters and thanatorium of a cult of priestly assassins … Read moreThe House of Black and White
Although Charles Kingley’s 1863 children’s novel has fallen from favor, his image of the Great Fairy Science – “who is likely to be queen of all the fairies for many a year to come” – might serve as an icon for certain nontheistic practices of magick. It’s a fun coincidence that the word “steam”, proudly … Read moreThe Great Fairy Science (from “The Water Babies” by Charles Kingsley)