Table of Contents for The Mystery of Death
by Nikolaos P. Vassiliadis
FOREWORD, p. 3
TABLE OF CONTENTS, p. 9
BIBLIOGRAPHY, p. 13
THE IMPARTIAL EXTORTIONIST OF THE HUMAN RACE
A shocking problem, p. 19. The innate fear of death, p. 23. The greatest mystery of
divine wisdom, p. 25.
SECULAR PHILOSOPHY AND DEATH
An impious degradation of man, p. 30. Mythical and childish notions, p. 33. Gravestone
inscriptions of the ancient Greeks, p. 36. "Painful sorrow" and "meditation
upon death", p. 39. Uncertainties and contradictions, p. 43. Agony and melancholy, p.
46. Doubt and shallowness, p. 52.
DEATH ENTERS VIOLENTLY INTO THE WORLD
The blessed life of Adam and Eve, p. 55. Free will, p.
60. The first rebellion on earth, p. 63. The verdict of death was pronounced immediately!
p. 69. Spiritual death, p. 72. The death of the bodya natural consequence, p. 76. A
universal phenomenon, p. 81. We alone and no one else! p. 86. "O, what agony the soul
endures"! p. 92. The separation of soul and body, p. 95.
PUNISHMENT BECOMES A BLESSING
That we may not sin eternally, p. 99. Death restrains our pride, p. 102. The decay of
the body is a blessing, p. 105. A source for sound
philosophy, p. 108. Death opens the arena for martyrdom, p. I 11. God cultivates hopes, p. 113. Gods love for man transforms
us for the better, p. 117.
THE INCARNATION OF GOD THE LOGOS: THE BEGINNING OF THE ABOLITION OF DEATH
Through man, death; Through man, resurrection, p. 121. The absolute sinlessness of the
Lord, p. 126. The Lord opened for us the road to heaven, p. 129. Death is annihilated, p.
134. Preludes to resurrection, p. 137.
THE CRUCIFIXION: THE ABOLITION OF DEATH
He died "for all and instead of all", p. 141. He gives life to mankind and to
nature, p. 149. He was crucified where death reigned, p. 154. "Through death we
became deathless", p. 157.
THE DESCENT OF THE LORD INTO HADES
The victory is extended into Hades, p. 163. The descent of Christ into Hades, p. 167.
Hades "received a body and encountered God, p. 175. Christ descended into Hades with
authority, p. 180. "A bridge toward new life", p. 185. "He made a heaven of
Hades!", p. 188.
Victory is confirmed, p. 192. Wholeness and illumination unto eternity, p. 197. Direct
and obvious results, p. 201. "God and mankind have become one race", p. 206. He
gave in return the grace of the Holy Spirit, p. 212.
DEATH BEFORE AND AFTER CHRIST
Death was fearful before Christ, p. 217. Death was beyond forbearance deserving great
lament, p. 220. Now "it only bears the name of death", p. 222. Only the devil is
truly dead! p. 226.
NOT KNOWING THE TIME OF DEATH IS A BLESSING!
The time of death is unknown, p. 230. Why is the time of death unknown? p. 233.
THE FEAR OF DEATH
Who fears death? p. 240.
OVERCOMING THE FEAR OF DEATH
Death is a passage toward eternity, p. 246. "Shed tears, but remain calm", p.
248. An attitude toward death which is acceptable to God, p. 251.
CHRISTIANS PHILOSOPHIZE CREATIVELY ON DEATH
"Be calm, look and see", p. 259. "Where is man with his many fantasies"? p. 262.
"Observe and sigh", p. 265. We receive
gladness of heart and eternal joy, p. 269.
THE MEMORY OF DEATH
We should remember death, p. 273. You shall never sin, p. 276. A supportive power, p. 280. The
memory of death embraces many virtues, p. 283.
THE LESSONS FROM THE GRAVES
"Let us go out to the grave", p. 287. The graves of the Martyrs, p. 291.
"Pray at length over the dead", p. 292.
THE DEATH OF THE MARTYRS
"To die is better than to live", p. 295. "Root, source and mother of all
good things", p. 298.
HOW THE FATHERS CONSOLE US
The death of our beloved ones, p. 301. The grief of spouses, p. 305. "Should I not
grieve over my child?", p. 311. Has your child died? "Thank God", p. 317.
Blessed is the death of infants, p. 321.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN EVIL AND A GOOD DEATH
Is a death which is cruel and unjust evil? p. 329. The death of sinners, p. 332. The
death of the righteous, p. 334.
CARE FOR THE DEAD AFTER DEATH
Preparation, presentation and procession of the deceased, p. 338. Didactic symbols, p.
THE FUNERAL SERVICE
The most dramatic service of our church, p. 352. The Funeral PsalmsThe Amomos,
p. 355. The Funeral PraisesEvlogitaria, p. 359. Mournings, lamentations,
questions, hopes, p. 361. The Beatitudes and the Biblical Readings, p. 365. The official
recognition and the final greeting, p. 370. "Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou
return", p. 375.
THE ACCOUNTING OF THE SOULS BEFORE THE TOLL-HOUSES
The silent beginning of the future life, p. 378. He who dies sees "angelic
authorities", p. 381. The accounting of the souls before the toll-houses includes
those of both the righteous and the sinners, p. 385.
THE INTERMEDIATE STATE OF SOULS
The soul exists and acts without the body, p. 393. Where do the souls live after death?
p. 397. A temporary state of anticipation, p. 400. How do the souls live there? p. 404.
Those who have fallen asleep are aware of us and pray for us, p. 407. God reveals our
needs to the righteous, p. 414.
THE SACRED MEMORIALS FOR THE DEAD
Prayers for those who have passed away, p. 417. The sacred Memorial Services, p. 420.
The Saturdays of the souls and the "kollyva", p. 424. Are the Memorials
beneficial? p. 427. Good works on behalf of the dead, p. 435.
THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD
The idea of "Reincarnation" is naive and nonsensical, p. 440. Is there a
Purgatorial Fire? p. 444. "I expect the resurrection of the dead", p. 447. The
resurrection of the body is required by the justice of God, p. 452. Be glad when the body
is dissolved, p. 456. The resurrection of the dead, p. 458.
THE NATURE OF THE RESURRECTED BODY
With new attributes: Incorruptible, glorious, eternal, p. 469.
THE UNIVERSAL JUDGMENT
There will be a judgment, p. 483. Who will be the judge? p. 490. All the nations will
be gathered, p. 493. How will the judgment be given? p. 500.
THE DEATHLESS DEATH
Is there a hell? p. 506. What are the punishments of hell? p. 513. Why hell is eternal?
The future kingdom, p. 538. Inexpressible and inconceivable beauty, p. 542. The
deification of man, p. 545. The blessedness of the righteous, p. 549. The unceasing joy of
Paradise, p. 555. The most desirable life of the righteous, p. 558. The joyous encounter,
p. 562. The blessedness of the righteous will be eternal, p. 567.
THE END OF THE WORLD
"Behold, I make all things new" (Rev. 21,5), p. 571.
INDEX OF SUBJECTS AND PERSONS, p. 583
Webmaster Note. This is one of the best books available on
the Orthodox view of the entire Mystery of Death. I decided to scan in the entire Table of
Contents in order to show the reader the number of related themes and how
comprehensive is the Orthodox understanding of death. This is an indispensable
book for anyone interested in this subject. I consider it one of the most important books
I have ever read. It can be difficult to find as it is published in Athens. Try ordering
Christian Supply Company. The address of the publisher is The Orthodox Brotherhood of Theologians
"The Savior", 42 Isavron St., 114 72 Athens, Greece.