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I don't want a funeral ceremony.

...on serious topics that don't fit anywhere else at present.
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God
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I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#1 Post by God » September 8th, 2007, 11:29 am

{These posts have been split from the Music at your funeral thread which is here. - Admin}.


I ain't planning to have a funeral. My bodily remains will be dumped into a hole somewhere or burnt, or whatever is most convenient for whoever has to deal with it, and will simply be absorbed back into the physical reality. As to my mind, I know not where it will wander (as ever). The only music will the music of the spheres, which is all-embracing.

Aum Siva

:twisted:

PS: Having said all that, if there was to be a funeral my kids and Mrs G would know of only one certainty - Dark Side of the Moon.

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#2 Post by Maria Mac » September 8th, 2007, 12:46 pm

God wrote:I ain't planning to have a funeral. My bodily remains will be dumped into a hole somewhere or burnt, or whatever is most convenient for whoever has to deal with it, and will simply be absorbed back into the physical reality.
Suppose whoever has to deal with it wants to have a funeral ceremony for you?

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God
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#3 Post by God » September 8th, 2007, 2:13 pm

Maria wrote:Suppose whoever has to deal with it wants to have a funeral ceremony for you?
Mrs G?
:laughter:

Our kids?
:hilarity:

They wouldn't DARE! :twisted:

OK, Amber (daughter) might do something. As I said, if so it would involve DSOTM.

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#4 Post by Fred » October 1st, 2007, 3:39 pm

I'm with God on this one. I see funerals as completely pointless. I avoid going to them whenever possible (which is bloody hard in Wales).

I really don't want anyone spending a brass farthing on such a ceremony for my corpse.

I know a lot of people say that the funeral is for those left behind, but of those left behind don't take the wishes of the deceased into consideration, then did they really care about them at all?

If my better half pops her clogs before I do, I will organise a full blown RC planting for her 'cos that's what she wants. If I croak before her, i expect her to respect my wishes in the same way. TBH, I doubt she will though - which is one of the reasons I will never get married - I trust my daughters to fulfil the next of kin duties on this and organ donation more than i do her.
Fred

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#5 Post by jaywhat » October 2nd, 2007, 6:18 am

'Funeral' means, to start with (according to Chambers), the disposal of the body. It also includes the ceremony/celebration.

I like the idea of these being separate.

I recently read of a man whose body (after all the correct paperwork) was taken to the crem on his mate's pick up truck, carried in by family and friends - less than 10 there - and cremated with not even a funeral director or an officiating person in site. No words and no music.

THEN, later they had a huge celebration of his life with over 200 people at the party.

I couldn't care less about mine. I won't be there. It will someone else's problem.

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#6 Post by Maria Mac » October 2nd, 2007, 9:16 am

Fred wrote:
I really don't want anyone spending a brass farthing on such a ceremony for my corpse. I know a lot of people say that the funeral is for those left behind, but of those left behind don't take the wishes of the deceased into consideration, then did they really care about them at all?
Sorry, Fred, but I'm surprised at the lack of human empathy from those who think as you do. Since you'll be dead what difference will it make to you?

While I was the ceremonies officer at the BHA, I took a number of calls from bereaved family members who were very distressed at the instructions left by the deceased that there was to be no ceremony. They wanted and felt they needed to come together to celebrate the life and that doing so would help them in their grieving. Of course they cared about the deceased! It was precisely because they loved the deceased so much that this was so important to them. They would phone me for ideas on what they might do as an alternative: an ash scattering ceremony, a memorial ceremony etc but they would invariably have preferred to have a funeral ceremony. I have felt the same myself at times of bereavement and one of my major and unexpected bereavements was all the more devastating because I couldn't get to the funeral.

I don't care what happens after my death but if my family want to spend part of their inheritance having a full blown ceremony, I say it is up to them. I don't feel any need to control what they do or don't do from even beyond the grave!

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#7 Post by Fred » October 2nd, 2007, 11:16 am

Maria wrote:
Fred wrote:
I really don't want anyone spending a brass farthing on such a ceremony for my corpse. I know a lot of people say that the funeral is for those left behind, but of those left behind don't take the wishes of the deceased into consideration, then did they really care about them at all?
Sorry, Fred, but I'm surprised at the lack of human empathy from those who think as you do. Since you'll be dead what difference will it make to you?
Sorry Maria, but I'm surprised at the lack of human empathy from those who think as you do. I need to be able to trust those who claim to love me or care for me to look after my interests when I am not capable of doing so for myself. Of course it will make no difference to me when I am dead but being able to trust people is extremely important to me now.

If my better half dies before I do, I will arrange a Catholic funeral for her and I will attend it, because that is what SHE wants not what I want. I only expect those I leave behind to show me the same respect.

If they really do need to spend money - don't let it go into some undertaker's pocket and encase my corpse in some expensive lump of wood from unsustainable forests. let them dispose of my body as cheaply and environmentally friendly as possible and then have a p**s up in a pub that sells decent beer. the rest of the money can be given to a good cause like Oxfam.

I was really upset at my father's funeral. He never went to funerals nor into churches. He did not want any expense or fuss made, but my mother felt that she had to have him planted in the traditional way. I was horrified that she could have disregarded his wishes. I just don't understand how some people can put their feelings above those of the people they profess to love.

I think we'll have to agree to disagree on this one Maria.
Fred

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#8 Post by Firebrand » October 2nd, 2007, 12:39 pm

I'm sure we can all agree to disagree but I notice you haven't in any way addressed the main point of Maria's post, Fred, which is the grief of the people left behind when you are no more.

Of course it's important to be able to trust people and it's reasonable to request the kind of funeral you want to have where there are environmental concerns. I share these concerns and I have told those who need to know that I would like a green burial if possible. It's also reasonable to express wishes about music and readings. But beyond that, why deny people the opportunity to mark your death in the way that's most meaningful to them? Organising and conducting a funeral ceremony that celebrated my father's life and expressed what he meant to us was one of the most important things I've ever done and having exactly the ceremony we wanted to have was enormously important to all of us who loved him.
Fred wrote: I know a lot of people say that the funeral is for those left behind, but of those left behind don't take the wishes of the deceased into consideration, then did they really care about them at all?
I would be distraught if any of my family said we're not to have a funeral ceremony for them. If they don't take the wishes of those who love them into consideration, then do they really care about them at all?

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#9 Post by Aphra » February 2nd, 2008, 5:17 pm

Why should it matter to you whether you have a funeral or not? There's a hint of control freakery about the idea of insisting you don't want a funeral, just as there is with people who arrange the whole thing themselves. I once conducted a funeral for a woman who'd even written her own tribute. Her family thought it highly amusing. She clearly didn't trust them, with good reason. They were quite glad to see the back of her, self-aggrandisement and all.

If you're not bothered about having a funeral, at least do something useful. Bequeath your body to medical research. I have. Whether or not my family has some sort of memorial meeting is up to them.

Rather than saying you don't want a funeral, maybe you might say it's up to them? Funerals needn't be boring, conventional affairs. They might enjoy laughing at your endearing idiosyncrasies - or not, as the case may be!

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#10 Post by Lancaster_Daf » February 2nd, 2008, 6:10 pm

I've always been a bit wombleesque when it comes to recycling and re-using stuff so donating my body to medical research seems like a sensible option, then my friends and family can have a party if they want to.
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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#11 Post by Alan H » February 2nd, 2008, 7:12 pm

Aphra wrote:Bequeath your body to medical research.
I've done that as well. However, not sure if they'll want it. :sad:
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#12 Post by Galgacus » February 2nd, 2008, 9:02 pm

I wouldn't want a funeral, as in a religious service, but I'm sure my family would (and will, unless I'm the last to go). If the family want to have a funeral it's fine by me - I just don't want to be there. That is I don't want the body there, I want it to be recycled. Every last organ that can be used should be used for transplant (and hopefully that'll be everything except the pancreas (which doesn't work), and that should go to the bods in research). The rest of what's left of me can go to the medical schools for them to use as they see fit. I won't need my body, let someone else make best use of it.

Now a Wake, that I expect. Hopefully when I arrive at the end of my life I'll be able to say that I did something of use. Enough hopefully that whoever's left behind will be able to raise a glass and say I did well.
We are the most distant people upon the earth, the last to remain free.

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Alan C.
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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#13 Post by Alan C. » February 27th, 2008, 6:54 pm

It appears the Pontiff thinks it's quite in order for us "heathens" to die "alone" below are two of the first four paragraphs from this
Benedict XVI: Believers Shouldn't Die Alone.
Subtitled
Reiterates Condemnation of All Forms of Euthanasia
VATICAN CITY, FEB. 25, 2008 (Zenit.org).- It's the duty of Christians to accompany those who are dying, and no believer should die alone, says Benedict XVI.
The Pontiff highlighted how others should participate alongside close relatives in the last moments of a person's life. "No believer," he said, "should die alone and abandoned."
Ah well.........I don't mind dying alone, especially if I'm killed in a car crash :grin: so stick that in your Incense burner and shake it.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#14 Post by lewist » March 14th, 2008, 4:50 pm

Alan C. wrote:It appears the Pontiff thinks...
Usually we shake our heads at his thought processes. Certainly there seems to be little of what they would call Christian Charity in this piece. He did have one quite good idea, though.
Death leave
Benedict XVI also recommended that relatives or those caring for the terminally ill have specific rights to take time off work, in a way similar to the leave family members take when a child is born.
When my wife was diagnosed as being terminally ill my employers recommended that I should get myself signed off so I could be at home with her. Through that advice they effectively gave me carer's leave and paid me for a good bit of that time. What a difference it made. In June I am returning to work for the first time since December '06.

They didn't need to do that, and indeed it would not have gone on indefinitely, but I have to say I was really glad of the kindness I experienced from them.
Carpe diem. Savour every moment.

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#15 Post by Lifelinking » March 15th, 2008, 11:08 am

My employers were also extremely good when I was trying to look after my dad towards the end (cancer of the bladder). Eventually I got 'signed off' by a good and sympathetic family GP. This was quite reasonable really as the stress of being pulled in different directions and trying to meet all my commitments was taking a real toll on my health. For those who have less helpful employers and / or understanding doctors, such a situation must be horrible. The 'leave' described for relatives or others caring for the terminally ill would indeed offer people in such difficult situations a level of help and protection.
"Who thinks the law has anything to do with justice? It's what we have because we can't have justice."
William McIlvanney

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#16 Post by LeperMessiah » March 15th, 2008, 5:03 pm

I wouldn't really want one anyway because I hate them so much myself, and I would certainly rather just be left to the birds, but my dad has already told me that if I precede him in death I get a Catholic ceremony. :laughter: Really, it shouldn't matter anyway. It's unhealthy to have emotion imbued in what happens to one's body after death. I mean, I'm not going to be around to see it.
Any sort of inhumanity, given practice, becomes human.--Kawabata Yasunari

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#17 Post by Emma Woolgatherer » March 15th, 2008, 6:23 pm

I do agree, more or less, that a funeral is for the bereaved, not for the dead. But if a person has strong feelings about such things, I think it's helpful if they leave instructions about what they want to happen after they die. And even if they don't have strong feelings, maybe they ought to nominate one particular person to make decisions about what to do. After all, the bereaved may not be of one mind about it.

My father, the cantankerous old codger, didn't want to have a funeral. He felt strongly about it. He put in his will that he wanted to be cremated, "without any ceremony or gathering". As it happens, he'd changed his mind about wanting to be cremated since he wrote the will, and he was buried, in a "woodland" cemetery (it's not a woodland now, but it will be one day). It took ten minutes. My mother was there, to see the job done, and my sister and I were there to give my mother support. We didn't do it ourselves because we didn't have suitable transport or enough strong men to carry the (cardboard) coffin. So my mother used a green funeral director, though she made a point of saying that it was a burial, not a funeral, and asked if the pallbearers could please dress casually. In the end, all they did was take off their ties. I suppose they'd just come from another funeral, so we couldn't have expected them to change into jeans and T-shirts. They also bowed after they'd lowered the coffin into the grave, which was a bit odd, and my dad would have hated it. But I suppose it's all part of taking pride in the job. It would have been churlish to complain.

But I digress. For my mother and me, it was a good thing that there was no ceremony, no readings, no eulogy. Not only because we knew that was what he wanted, but also because my mother couldn't have coped with it. (As she put it, it would have "finished her off".) My sister, on the other hand, would have liked a proper funeral [---][/---] and a humanist one would have done nicely, even though she's a Quaker. Of the rest of the family, some were understanding, some relieved, some a little disappointed, one quite annoyed. But frankly they weren't the priority. Most of them hadn't seen him for years anyway. It was my mum's feelings and my dad's that mattered most. My parents had lived together for over sixty years. It was important to her that we were doing something that my dad would have approved of, even though she knew he'd never know. It was important to me, too. How could I have possible sat through a ceremony knowing that he would have been hopping mad about it? It would have felt wrong.

My mother has also made it clear that she doesn't want a funeral, and the rest of the family will be respecting her wishes. It won't please everyone, but that wouldn't be possible anyway. As for me, I don't have such strong feelings. I want the green burial ground and the biodegradable coffin and no embalming and no headstone and no cut flowers in plastic wrappers with corny little notes on them and no funereal costumes and no clergy and no God-talk and no pomp. But apart from that, I'm easy. :D So I think I'll leave it up to my partner to decide, if he outlives me. If he doesn't, I'll plan and pay for the whole thing in advance, and be buried with no ceremony or gathering. If a bunch of my friends want to get together in the Hand and Flower and raise a glass or two to my memory, then that's fine by me.

Emma

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Alan C.
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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#18 Post by Alan C. » March 15th, 2008, 6:34 pm

LeperMessiah
but my dad has already told me that if I precede him in death I get a Catholic ceremony.
Your dad may be dissapointed. ( know I've posted this before, but LeperMessiah wasn't with us then.)
A Church of Scotland minister in Ardrossan has set the cat amongst the proverbial pigeons by claiming that conducting funerals for non-believers is a time-wasting burden on the Church.
Full article here Ardrossan minister calls for secular funerals.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#19 Post by grammar king » March 16th, 2008, 12:13 pm

There are 2 things about my 'funeral' that are very important to me.

1. It is not to be a religious service. My family are practicing Catholics so I've made it perfectly clear to them (or at least to my siblings, I think my mum'd have a heart attack) that there is to be no mumbo-jumbo.

2. There will be no grave or memorial site or anything like that. I don't want anyone feeling like they have to come and visit my grave, or to tidy it up or anything like that. If they want to remember me they can do it wherever they want. My organs will be donated and the rest of my body given to the medics.

Other than that, I would like it to be a casual affair, plenty of drinking, my favourite music and maybe a reading or two (the opening lines from Unweaving the Rainbow would be great), but I'll let my family decide.

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Re: I don't want a funeral ceremony.

#20 Post by lewist » March 17th, 2008, 2:20 pm

When my wife died in February, she had already stated her wish to have a Humanist funeral with invited guests and to be be cremated. However, our local cemetery was on one of the short walks we did when she could walk but not very far. It lies between the Glenfeshie mountains and the Loch. One beautiful Sunday afternoon we sat on the bench in the cemetery in companionable quiet.

'You know, this is really lovely here' she said. 'In fact,' she continued after a moment, 'perhaps I'd like to be here.'

'You mean you want to change the arrangements?'

'No, but you could bury my ashes.'

A couple of weeks later she got me to contact the Council. We visited the cemetery again to decide if it was to be on the side looking to the mountains or overlooking the Loch (the former was the decision) and then we went and selected a lair. In due course her ashes will be buried and I am now arranging to have a memorial made from a lump of pink granite.

I feel that in doing this for Maureen I am fulfilling my final duties in caring for her. What was important to her in life has become important to me afterwards. In addition I feel it helps us all in the grieving process.
Carpe diem. Savour every moment.

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