Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

Living Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Coping with Death

  • Khyati TripathiEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27771-9_200228-1

What is Death? Yes, it is cessation of life and of the physical body but it can manifest itself in ways more than these. It can have a disabling effect on the bereaved after losing a loved one or it can create an overarching anxiety or fear about one’s own death or of a significant other. In both the scenarios, when a real death has happened or when there is a discomforting anxiety related with death, coping becomes inevitable. This essay explains how religion and other religious aspects help individuals cope with death anxiety as well as death of a loved one. It presents how religion interacts with the human psyche in order to create a balance and synergy.

Death Anxiety and Religion

There have been different theories explaining what death anxiety is. The most significant view amongst these perspectives is considered to be of Freud’s. For Sigmund Freud (1953), thanatophobia is a remnant of the unresolved conflict in the unconscious. Moving away from the psychoanalytic view, Belsky (1999...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of DelhiDelhiIndia