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The Spiritual Dimension of Ageing, Second Edition


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Comprehensive second edition presenting expansive new research on the spirituality of ageing

Table of Contents

1. Ageing societies and the spiritual dimension. 2. Religion, faith, spirituality and the psychosocial dimension. 3. Building an understanding of spirituality and ageing: a model of spirituality and ageing. 4. Baby boomer ageing and spirituality: same or different? Elizabeth MacKinlay and Dr. Richard Burns. 5. Building an understanding of spirituality and ageing: a model for spiritual growth and development. 6. Models of spirituality in ageing: a multifaith perspective. 7. Meaning in Life: from provisional meaning to final meanings - a spiritual process. 8. Types of ultimate meaning and images of God. 9. Responses to ultimate meaning in life: religious. 10. Response to ultimate meaning through experience and activity. 11. The spiritual journey in ageing. 12. Perceptions of self-sufficiency and vulnerability in ageing: transcending disabilities and loss. 13. Wisdom and the move from provisional to final meanings. 14. Hope, fear, despair and the final life career. 15. Humour, laughter, spirituality and ageing. 16. Spirituality, relationship and issues of isolation in ageing. 17. Living in a hyper-cognitive society: issues of cognitive decline, personhood and spirituality. 18. A picture of spirituality and ageing. 19. The spiritual dimension of ageing: meeting the challenges and roles in spiritual care for aged care professionals and pastoral practitioners.

About the Author

Elizabeth MacKinlay is a registered nurse and an Anglican priest. She was the inaugural Director of the Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies at St Mark's National Theological Centre, Canberra, and is a Professor in the School of Theology, Charles Sturt University. Elizabeth was Chair of the ACT Ministerial Advisory Council on Ageing ending her term in 2008 and the ACT Senior Australian of the Year for 2009.


Elizabeth Mackinlay brings an almost unique binocular approach to her subject, combining as she does her wisdom and vocation - both as a nurse and as an Anglican priest. As such, she is especially well-qualified to address the dimensions of spirituality and ageing. Mackinlay approaches the issues with a natural pastoral deftness, compassion and composure that will inspire and inform all who read her work. She is one of the leading writers in this field today, and as such, her books are an essential companion for all who work and study in this area. -- The Dean, The Very Revd Prof. Martyn Percy, Christ Church, Oxford
Spiritual awareness sharpens as we age. The lively narratives of this research remind us that older people are resources in themselves, inviting us to connect on a deeper level. By immersing ourselves in the universal nature of human spirituality we can create connections and discover the core of caring. -- Associate Professor Rosalie Hudson, Charles Sturt University, Australia
A timely appreciation of what for aging boomers informs and expresses life's meaning, purpose and spirituality is opened up here in new research by Dr E MacKinlay. Her observations and insights will assist those in all professions who work with boomers in their early and late aging, as well as offering thoughts on spirituality in aging for boomers themselves -- Dr. Patricia Marsden-Dole, Seniors' Advocate, Ottawa, Canada

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