By David Albert Jones
David Albert Jones considers uncomplicated questions: how will we stay good within the face of demise? and whilst, if ever, is it valid intentionally to convey human existence to an finish? He focuses upon the designated theological ways to loss of life proven via 4 awesome Christian thinkers: Ambrose of Milan, Augustine of Hippo, Thomas Aquinas, and Karl Rahner. Jones's objective isn't essentially to contribute to the heritage of theology, yet fairly, via engagement with the idea of theologians of the prior, to mirror on a number of the functional and existential matters that the method of dying provides for we all.
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Additional resources for Approaching the End: A Theological Exploration of Death and Dying (Oxford Studies in Theological Ethics)
However, if life is a good, death would seem to be an evil. Before answering this point, Ambrose Wnds it necessary to distinguish diVerent kinds of death, and so, straightaway, introduces his doctrine of three deaths: ‘death due to sin’; ‘mystical death’ (in baptism); and ‘the death by 9 FR 123. In the last section on the work (FR 123–35) Ambrose returns from considering the resurrection to his original theme of the goodness or badness of death now in the light of the truth of the resurrection.
It is natural and good. It was not originally a part of human nature but became so, so that it could be a release from the punishments of this life (FR 47). Death would be desirable as an escape from misery, even if death brought extinction, but in fact it is better than this. 9 D EATH AS BONUM The sermon De Wde resurrectionis was preached in 379 ce. Ambrose came back to the subject in the late 380s ce, in his commentary on Luke (7: 35), and, more prominently, in a work devoted to the subject of ‘death as a good thing’ (De bono mortis, henceforth BM).
This gives him good reason why it is disordered for the soul to subject itself to the passions of the body, but it gives no hint about what the body is actually good for. Likewise the doctrine of the bodily resurrection, which Ambrose acknowledges, seems at best irrelevant, at worst problematic for the freedom of the soul. Ambrose’s theological approach to death and dying was shared by many of his Christian contemporaries. His signiWcance for the theology of death lies not in his originality but in the remarkable clarity with which he articulated what was a fairly common view.
Approaching the End: A Theological Exploration of Death and Dying (Oxford Studies in Theological Ethics) by David Albert Jones