This is a personal and intimate account of the time leading up to and following the death of Brazier's mother. It looks back on Irene's life and reflects on the process by which life is given meaning and how this is inextricably linked to the death time. Who Loves Dies Well weaves a narrative of the events leading up to Irene's death with an exploration of Pureland Buddhist principles. It shows how this form of spirituality supported those involved - and how it can support us - in living a good life and having a good death.
The book explores the meaning of faith from a Pureland Buddhist perspective - a major Eastern Buddhist denomination little known in the West. This approach is centred on the devotee's relationship with the Buddha rather than an introspective, meditation-based search for self-perfection - a readily accessible spirituality for ordinary people. The Buddha is quoted as saying, 'those who simply have faith in me, who simply love me, are all headed for heaven.'
Brazier emphasises the support he felt from those around him, particularly those in the Amida Trust Buddhist community - inside which the events unfolded. In turn, he supports the reader to examine what is to many a difficult subject - to reflect with sensitivity on our own journey, and look for the meaning within and to consider how our own faith underpins and shapes our lives. The clear and gentle narrative, and his frank sharing regarding his own experiences portrays a sense that it's OK - to feel, to cry, to love and to die.
An excellent book - highly recommended.