Where: Denmark, Brædstrup People: Scandinavian Religion: Cultural Protestantism Ritual: Funeral
Lauri Makela died from mesothelioma at Gudenå Hospice on March 13, 2017.
Lauri was faced with the decision of receiving in-home care or staying in a hospice for the remainder of his life. He chose the hospice. He was very happy about this decision as he could receive all the help he needed round-the-clock.
The first thing Lauri told me, when I met him was that he didn’t believe in any god. He was an atheist, he said.
At the same time, Lauri had a unique spiritual awareness and believed in reincarnation. He also believed that when he died, he would come to a very peaceful place – a beautiful valley with lots of light and a clean fresh river. While he found this vision very comforting, he wasn’t sure where this valley would lead him, but he was sure, that he would be reborn as a human.
Lauri taught himself to meditate many years ago, and used meditation in his fight against the cancer. He believed that his meditation practice helped prolonging his life.
At the start of his illness, Lauri underwent chemotherapy as a palliative treatment, knowing it would not cure him. However, the chemotherapy made him very sick, and he began to question the sense in feeling so unwell for the limited time he had left. As a result, he decided to stop the treatment and felt a little better.
Thank you very much to Lauri and his amazing family who let me into their lives with my camera during this difficult period.