Funeral rituals are treated differently according to culture or religion. When attending a Buddhist funeral service, one common practice you may notice is offering gifts. Giving a condolence gift has long been an appropriate gesture to express your sympathy for a loss.
Giving an inappropriate gift can make you seem insensitive, especially during this challenging time for the family. Additionally, there are certain Buddhist funeral etiquettes that one should follow, but if you are a non-believer, you may not be aware of them.
Here are three appropriate sympathy gifts you can bring when attending a Buddhist funeral.
Buddhists may make donations to charities, individuals in need or for religious projects, and groups in memory of the deceased. If done with a pure heart and pure intentions, the deeds can endow the deceased with more positive qualities. Some bereaved families may wish to conduct a special donation service where a large group of family and friends can present gifts on behalf of the deceased. The monks of the temple will assist the family in organizing and conducting the event.
Food is the most common type of gift you can bring or send to the bereaved as a way to express your condolences. Often, the process of arranging a Buddhist funeral package can be quite hectic, leaving the grieving family with little time to eat a proper meal. However, skipping meals can be toxic on the human body, as we need nutrients for our bodies to function normally.
If you notice that your friend or relative is overwhelmed with the preparation of a funeral and is not eating properly, you can send some fruits, baked goods, nuts, and different kinds of chocolates, so that they can have some snacks in the meantime. These food items are recommended as they can provide the bereaved family with the comfort and nourishment they need during this challenging period.
Flowers given in remembrance of the deceased are typically accepted at the family home or the funeral home. Making calls to family members to find out about family preferences demonstrates consideration and thoughtfulness.
Buddhists believe the main purpose of giving flowers is to spread peace during a sad event. Furthermore, these funeral wreaths are meant to symbolize mourning and are considered an offering to the Buddha for the peace of the departed soul.
It is very important that the flowers that you choose are always white lilies and white lotuses would be excellent choices, as these are the most common types of flowers accepted at Buddhist funerals. Traditionally, white flowers are preferred because they signify mourning, while red flowers are avoided because the color red is associated with joy and celebration, making it inappropriate for a solemn event such as a funeral.
Sending sympathy gifts is one of the best ways to express your condolences to the bereaved family. This simple Buddhist funeral package in Singapore can go a long way in helping a grieving family find peace and comfort during a challenging and traumatic time.