End of life

Spirituality and the meaning of life

We all have our own unique spiritual needs, traditions or questions about our lives. This can be broader than the rituals of specific religions or churches. Towards the end of life, you may become more aware of these feelings or beliefs, and you may wish to think and talk about them.

What can you do?

If you have a specific belief system, then the traditions of your church or faith system can offer support. Talking about your beliefs and thoughts with your faith leader or friends and family might bring a lot of comfort.

Spirituality might involve thinking and talking about your past and the future, or carrying out personal traditions. You may want to think about and discuss questions such as ‘Why has this happened to me?’ or ‘What happens next?’ Talking about these questions can be very helpful.

You might also want to tell someone, such as a health care professional, trusted friend or religious leader, something that you have never told anyone before, but feel that you need to share before you die.

Next: Physical signs and care at the end of life >

Last medically reviewed: March 2018. Due for review: March 2021

This information uses the best available medical evidence and was produced with the support of people living with lung conditions. Find out how we produce our information. If you’d like to see our references get in touch.