Grand Canyon University: HLT-310V
Healthy Grief Grief is a process that most everyone will go through at some point in his life. A person who is experiencing grief may have suffered loss of a loved one, loss of a job, or diagnosis of a terminal illness. The five stages of grief as described by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in 1969 have helped in defining the steps one may go through after experiencing a loss. Every person has his own response to grief, so he may not go through every stage. This paper will examine the story of Job from the Bible and will compare his grieving process to that as defined by Kubler-Ross. The grieving process of the Jewish believer will also be discussed as well as this author’s thoughts on grief.
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The first stage is known as aninut, and is the time between death and burial. During this time, the body is never left alone. The body is considered a holy vessel, therefore the body is washed in order to purify and then dressed in white linen or cotton. When the body is returned to the earth, the family takes turns shoveling the earth onto the coffin in acceptance of the fact that the family member is gone. This is different from the aforementioned grief process in that the Jewish believer accepts the death sooner. The seven days following the burial are known as Shiva, which means seven. Upon returning home, a meal of condolence is eaten. The family will often sit on the ground or on low stools in symbolism of the low state of the mourner. Similar to Kubler-Ross’ mourning process, the Jewish believer also goes through a period of feelings that might be considered a time of depression. Visitors usually sit quietly near the mourner allowing them to lead the conversation, which should celebrate the deceased. Shloshim is the first 30 days following burial. During this time, Kaddish, a special prayer is recited regularly. The mourner is forbidden from attending parties, wearing new clothes, or having a haircut or shaving during this time. The yahrzeit is the memorial anniversary of death. No rejoicing or eating of meat or drinking of alcohol takes