- By Helen
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It would be strange for me to share anything from the Daily Telegraph. The reason I’m doing so with this article because it draws attention to the change in our death ceremonies. There is increased awareness of our freedom to make funerals whatever we wish them to be with nobody’s rules required but our own.
Whilst we can make a ceremony whatever we want it to be, as the article demonstrates, the highly styled antics on the horizon that turn ceremonies into a societal spectacle rather than a personal response to loss of a life concerns me. Link to article below.
We celebrate and mourn with great joy and sadness the loss of a life, often in proportion to how that life was lived. And despite the importance and balance of humour, lightness, whimsy and joy, I hope we don’t lose the essential honouring and sacredness of our end of life ceremonies in the desire to move away from the sombre and limiting funeral traditions.
Taken from an article written by Sharon Salzberg in Krista Tippet’s blog, On Being, this quote sums up what may be the best approach to the important events in our lives and when planning a funeral ceremony, “Making space for complicated emotions allows us to reach an emotional balance within ourselves where we become less reactive, allowing more room for kindness.” Salzberg refers to the Buddhist approach to how best to manage our response to the external factors that affect us and how we then internalise those experiences. Well, our response to the death of a loved one, a stranger or someone famous will definitely require some space to find emotional balance. Click on link for article. http://www.onbeing.org/blog/sharon-salzberg-a-safe-space-in-equanimity/8583
Wouldn’t it be better for our sacred birth and death ceremonies to focus on the living and the dead, and for us to have a depth of connection to these ceremonies as we determine our place within this world? Let’s not treat death ceremonies like a try hard over-the-top child’s birthday party for much richness will be missed, plus you’re likely to end up feeling giddy from too much sugar and no doubt there will be grumpiness and tears.