Four Distinctive Religious Funeral Customs

Four Distinctive Religious Funeral Customs

Many countries and cities have nowadays become a pot of mixed cultures and religions, the funerals in every religion aim to help the deceased individual smoothly enter the path to the afterlife. 

For instance, the funeral wake in Chinese is the process of keeping vigil on the dead person till the funeral ceremony. This shows loyalty to the deceased as the loyal ones give the company as they prepare the body for the afterlife. Similarly, there are many such unique funeral traditions present in the religions.

Here, we’ll see different religious funeral customs

1. Buddhism

The purpose of the funeral rituals will vary based on religion and beliefs. Buddhism, for an instance, shows a strong belief in the fact that life and death are all a part of an ongoing cycle. 

The actions of a person lead to reincarnation and this cycle can continue several times until the soul attains enlightenment and reaches the ultimate state of nirvana. It implies that the ultimate freedom of the soul lies in freeing the soul from all desires and self-notions. 

One of the most popular forms of Buddhist death ritual is the Bird Scattering or Tibetan Sky Burial. People will stake the deceased on the mountains to offer food to vultures and other scavengers. 

As a part of the Buddhist funeral the Tibetan Book of the Dead, or Bardo Thodol, is something that Buddhists would like to read to a dying person as well as in the moments immediately following death.

2. Christianity

Practices can vary widely depending on the different Christian denominations all across the world. 

  • According to Jewish funeral practices, burial and funeral should take place at the earliest after death but cremation is not an option.
  • However, the catholic funeral will take place at the chapel of a Catholic assisted living center or a Catholic church. 

While the Jewish prefer to hold the funeral at the synagogue, gravesite, or funeral home, Catholics always prefer the churches.

3. Hinduism

Hindus believe that the soul of the deceased will either attain moksha (ultimate freedom) or will have reincarnation. Cremation is the most accepted form of Hindu funeral in Singapore

The funeral rites are primarily based on the Vedas, the ancient Hindu scriptures. The funeral takes place as soon as possible after the death of the person. 

Cremation is mandatory as the Hindus believe that it’s the quickest way to release the soul from the body. According to the traditions, the Hindus should spread the cremated remains in the holy water. 

4. Islam

The religion teaches that the body of the deceased should reside in the coffin until the day of final Judgement. If possible, the dying person will repeat a declaration of faith called Shahada as the last uttered words. 

The religion forbids cremation after death. So, the family members will prepare the dead body for burial as soon as possible without any viewing. 

During the funeral service, mourners will contribute three handfuls of soil to the grave. Traditionally, a small stone or marker on the grave is enough instead of any large monument. 

You can consult professional funeral arrangers for the flawless execution of the funeral. 

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