"It used to be said that the Victorians of the nineteenth century talked incessantly about death but were silent about sex, whereas today we talk incessantly about sex and are silent about death…In today's culture we chatter incessantly about both sex and death. Now there is nothing we cannot talk about in polite company. It is a great liberation. And a great loss, if in fact both sex and death partake a mystery. Mystery is attended by a fitting reticence." - Richard John Neuhaus, First Things
"Death: God's way of telling you not to be such a wise guy.
"Sure, it's going to kill a lot of people, but they may be dying of something else anyway." - Othal Brand, member of a Texas pesticide review board, on chlordane
"If you attempt to talk with a dying man about sports or business, he is no longer interested. He now sees other things as more important. People who are dying recognize what we often forget, that we are standing on the brink of another world." - William Law in Christian Perfection, a contemporary paraphrase by Marvin D. Hinten
"The most interesting time of human life, I think, is when your heart stops, and for between 2 and 15 minutes, your brain is still running, I think the most interesting part of my life is going to happen in those 2 to 15 minutes. Because time doesn't exist then. When the body's gone and you've got 120 billion neurons whirring, it's like LSD. More can happen in one minute than in a thousand lifetimes". - LSD guru Timothy Leary
"I mean, there's no control in life, is there? There's only one who's in control, and He'll take me when He wants me. I don't want to know about it. It's none of my business. But when it happens, I just ask that it won't be painful and that He forgives my sins." - Actor/comedian Chris Farley, who died of a drug overdose at the age of 33, Rolling Stone, Feb. 5
"So many Americans watched as Cardinal Bernardin faced his mortality... I think we were all edified by his acceptance of death as a friend and not an enemy. Any religion that doesn't deal with death realistically is not worth its salt." - Archbishop Rembert Weakland in New York Times Magazine (March 9, 1997)
"Approaching the end of life through the lens of assisted suicide is like looking through the wrong end of binoculars; the view is narrowed and distorted. Dying can be a rich and meaningful time. We must raise standards of clinical practice, reform medical education, and adopt health policy that expands access to comprehensive palliative care without pauperizing families in the process." - Dr. Ira Brock, hospice physician (quoted in Washington Post, Jan. 2, 1997)