Alternative terms for Death and Dying

 These are our inadequate attempts to report a death to others.  We usually try to say it gently or consolingly, or to make it lighter than we feel. Generally, we express that we hope the Dead still live “Somewhere”.  Or not:  perhaps this explains the sometimes bluntness.
He “died”.  He’s dead. 
He’s gone to heaven. 
She “returned to spirit”   (my own language)
He “went to the rainbow bridge”  Focusing friend John J., speaking of his pet.
“My sister-in-law, L., has crossed the bridge and is no longer suffering.”  (said by a friend)
“Going Home”  “Returning home” “To be called home” “He returned home to his Heavenly Father” “She went to her heavenly home on Sunday” (obituaries)
She went home to Gloryland
 “passing over”  She passed peacefully in her sleep.
“walking on”  (Native American)
 “Meeting one’s Maker”
He’s resting in peace now     R.I.P.
We laid her to rest.  She’s gone to rest
 “before I leave this earth”
He transitioned.  “At a Buddhist temple outside Hue, Vietnam’s onetime capital, 92-year–old Thich Nhat Hanh has come to quietly “transition,” as his [Buddhist] disciples put it.”
She “passed to Spirit” or “passing to the Spirit World”  National Spiritualist Asso. of Churches
He  ”is no longer with us.”
Gordy is with Jesus this morning.  (a friend about a friend)
He’s in the arms of the Savior.
“She was the seventh of the nine children Roxana Foote bore Lyman Beecher before being gathered to her reward,”                          … David McCullough in Brave Companions, Simon & Schuster, NY, 1992, in the chapter on Harriet Beecher Stowe. 
“…his departure from this earth was said to be imminent.  (John Connolly,  The Caxton Private Lending Library and Book Depository, Mysterious Bookshop, NY, 2013)
#21   ”I learned that most of them were Jews who were waiting for what the SS called “transfer to the sky.”  They all knew they would soon die.”  P.169, “Poetry in Buchenwald”, in Against the Pollution of the I, by Jacques Lusseyran.
#22  He’s got to go and stand before his Judge.  He’s meeting his maker.
He transpired.  He expired.
He took his life.
The disease won;  she succumbed to cancer.
He was killed in action.
She was murdered.
He’s gone forever.
She’s six feet under now.
“He departed from the earth plane in 1901.” (Geraldine Cummins)
He bought the farm!
 She’s crossed into Hades (Greek)
 He’s safe in the harbor.
   From Wikepedia:
She’s pushing daisies now
We “put him to sleep; “we put him down” – common reports for mercy killing our pets
…going up to the spirit in the sky (60s pop song)
Marching to Zion (Isaac Watts)
…found everlasting life  (Methodist, 653)
…in Christ have eternal life, released from all the bonds of time (Methodist, 654)
…Swing low, sweet chariot, coming for to carry me home (Methodist, 703)
We’re going to see the King. (Methodist, 706)
…then he’ll call me some day to my home far away (Methodist, 504)
Pearly gates
Happy hunting ground
Nirvana                    (49)
before I    “shuffle off this mortal coil.” –Hamlet                      (48)

3 Replies to “Alternative terms for Death and Dying”

  1. My Louisiana Quaker friend Pam Arnold says someone has "caught the bus."


  2. … as in "We took that trip two years after Mama caught the bus."


  3. Ann, thank you for this! I had a difficult autumn, much pain in my left arm and shoulder, and let the blog get awy from me. I'll add this to my collection – so funny! I hope you're well!


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