Rituals and traditions reflect a fundamental system of values that help bind us together.
They have stood the test of time because they offer ways to tackle grief and process it in a way to help us move forward into a new and altered way of living.
The traditions that surround the grieving process also provide easy ways for the Community to support the bereaved. This is vital both in the moment and moving forward through the ups and downs that will come.
When you start to attack the rituals of everyday life and events such as grief and funerals, it can take away our most basic forms of togetherness and Community sentiment.
We each have an important role in our Community and our group of family and friends. And we each deserve to be held in the same high regard in death as we were in life.
When it comes to death and funerals, some like to say “just bury me in a cardboard box” or “I want no fuss”. Often what they are doing is waiting for you to tell them they are worth more than that and they deserve a proper farewell.
But people often like to avoid the topic of death and grief, hence they try to sweep it under the carpet with such aloof comments.
However, we can’t bury our head in the sand. As they say in the classics “none of us can escape death forever”.
And as such, traditions and beliefs provide a proven structure and way to cope through the chaotic and often confusing path of grief.
Rituals and traditions involved in the funeral process have evolved to give honour where honour is due, respect where respect is due, and tribute where tribute is due.
At the same time, we shouldn’t lose the true meaning of our traditions and begin acting out of habit…
… It’s important to carefully plan the exact type of farewell you would like to give your loved one. Inevitably there will be some sense of “sameness” from one funeral to the next, but with the help of a good funeral director you can arrange a funeral to suit your family’s particular needs.
And this is what brings an individuality to ritual and tradition. Instead of being stuck in a rut, be free to make personal choices within a proven path / system of values and tradition. That is what eases the pain of grief and gives your loved one the best send-off possible.
Rituals and traditions help us feel closer to the deceased. They help us show our love and respect not only for them, but for their grieving family.
The grieving process is a natural and normal reaction to loss. And rituals and traditions are a natural and normal way for humankind to cope with such pain.