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The Radiant Shock of Death

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Richard A. Hughes

This book is an interdisciplinary study of death in relation to epilepsy and the Dostoevsky aura. Beginning with Frederic Myers' psychology of death, it develops Leopold Szondi's theories of the familial unconscious, paroxysmal pattern, and the bridge as symbol of the transcendent self. Specific attention is devoted to death-bed visions, bereavement dreams, and near-death experiences, as well as the symbolism of cancer and AIDS deaths. A theology of death is constructed from the biblical imagery of joy and the concept of death as a nonrational shock event.