The loss of a love one is extremely personal, and most cultures and religions have unique funeral traditions to celebrate departed family members. The following overview shines light on some of these international funeral service traditions:
- Western Funerals
Funerals planned in North America and Europe are heavily influenced by Christian traditions. The acts of sending flowers , making donations to a favorite church or charity, and black dress colors are all characteristics of a Western-influenced funeral.
Roman Catholic funerals often involve additional religious touches, such as wakes, graveside prayers, and burial rites. While pioneered through religious communities, many of these traditions are no longer specific to the Catholic faith. In fact, most Western funerals incorporate some of these components as a part of cultural tradition.
- Middle Eastern Funerals
Funeral traditions in the Middle East are derived from Muslim and Jewish faiths. Muslim funeral traditions require the body to be buried as quickly as possible. Key features of a Muslim funeral include a silent procession, three days of mourning, and gifts of food. Unlike Western funerals, the sending of flowers is not an appropriate gesture in Muslim tradition.
Similarly, Jewish funerals take place within a day of a family member’s passing. All men, even those of non-Jewish descent, are required to wear a yarmulke to the ceremony. Jewish tradition also calls for a mourning period, which lasts seven days. Again, flowers are an inappropriate condolence in Jewish tradition.
- Pan-Asian Funerals
Funerals in the Buddhist tradition are remarkably different than their Western counterparts. As Buddhists believe in the passing of life and journey toward Nirvana, funerals are a cause for celebration. Flowers are an appropriate gift of condolence, but food is not.
On the other end of the scale, Hindu funerals take place in the home soon after the loved one’s passing. The ceremony waits until after a ceremonial cremation. Fruit is the most appropriate condolence gift for funerals in the Hindu tradition.
Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland celebrates all types of funeral traditions . Contact us at (510) 992-6709 to learn how our grounds can accommodate your unique cultural needs.
- Defining Partnership
Barring a lawyer given power of attorney, domestic partners are granted disposition rights after a loved one has passed. However, this domestic partner must be officially documented by the State of California Domestic Partner Registry. Any two persons over the age of 18 that are not related by blood or marriage are eligible for domestic partnership registry. According to the City Clerk of Oakland, partners also much share “common necessities of life” and have “resided together for at least six months prior to filing an Affidavit of Domestic Partnership .” Once these steps have been completed, a domestic partner is put in full control of funeral arrangements.
- Disposition Details
The state of California’s Department of Consumer Affairs grants numerous rights to a surviving domestic partner. In terms of funeral arrangements, a domestic partner may choose funeral decorations incorporated into the service. Additionally, a domestic partner is in full control of the type of funeral service being held. If the domestic partner is unavailable or incompetent, these rights will be transferred to adult children or surviving parents.
- Arrangement Rights
Department of Consumer Affairs provides several protections for surviving partners and family members. All funeral homes are required to quote prices over the phone and provide price lists during personal visits. Likewise, California law requires casket sellers to provide a written price list of caskets and alternative burial containers. Learn more by visiting the Department of Consumer Affairs online.
- Compassionate Friends offers friendship, understanding, and hope for those who have suffered the loss of a child. They also have advice on the grieving process in general.
- Do you want to know more about how you can help someone you care about through a time of grief? HelpGuide.org has step-by-step information on being supportive for someone experiencing difficult times.
- If you have a loved one who has lost someone special to them, find out ways you can lend your support. Check out this link on how to help a loved one with the death of a family member from LiveStrong.com.
- Sometimes people feel like they are not making any progress in the grieving process. Find out more about the complicated grief process in this article from BlogMemorial.com.
- For advice on the internal struggles that grieving presents, explore this link from GoodGriefCenter.com . Here you’ll find 20 tips for the bereaved.
This past weekend, Chapel of the Chimes Oakland had their second sold out Jazz at the Chimes Concert with over 200 people who attended the event.
Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the next Jazz at the Chimes Concert which will be held Sunday, May 20, 2012 at 2 PM with John Santos! Thank you to everyone who helped us make this event a huge success!