Monday, April 30, 2007

The Rituals of Grief

Under the Gables has a thought-provoking article on the rituals of grief. Our society has pared down the external manifestations of mourning which were psychologically healing ways of dealing with pain. For all of our license, we are such a repressed society. People seem to use violence and sexuality as outlets of emotions that were once given an expression by religious ritual, customs and even by great art, music, and drama. My sister was told on the day of our father's funeral that she should not wear black because she was "celebrating" his life. My sister said, "I want to wear black because I am sad." Political correctness is callous and inhuman. Share


Michelle Therese said...

My mother, who died of cancer, wouldn't let us have a funeral. She said it was "selfish" and made her death "all about you." Instead we had to have this "celebration of life" thing and no one felt free to cry or show any real emotions. And so she died and we never had the chance to mourn together as a family. I tried to have a Mass for her on All Souls Day but some family members found out and pitched such a fit I didn't go through with it - I was too weak and in shock.

elena maria vidal said...

Oh, Coffee, I completely understand. My dad died of cancer. It is always a very vulnerable time when a parent has died, and there is such agony when the very people who should be offering comfort are antagonizing you instead. You can still have a Mass said for your mother, at a religious house or some discreet place. Or email me her name and I'll have a mass said for her, dear.

Jeffrey Smith said...

" For all of our license, we are such a repressed society."
Truer words were never spoken.

Anonymous said...

That article certainly does shed light on the bewildering mentality exhibited by our society. The primary emotionality seems to be bacchanalia or mass murder.

Anonymous said...

I remember when my mother who also died of cancer at only 56 years of age. We knew she was dying but still the pain was almost unbearable.

At times people need to LISTEN rather than 'give advice'. I remember crying for the loss of my mother when one of my fellow catholics said 'now, now Marie you mustn't dwell on sadness that is selfish'..This was the day AFTER my mothers funeral.

I miss my mother every day and at times I still cry in privacy...but I also honour my mothers memory by trying to be the best of who I am and to embrace LIFE....

Coffee wife, speak to your Priest about your feelings and let him know you would like to offer up a Mass...Go where YOUR heart leads...Am so sorry for your loss.

Elena you are such an inspiring woman, I am sure your father would be so very proud of the light and love you share with all of us through this wonderful blog.

God bless you all.

Yours in Christ,


elena maria vidal said...

Thank you, Marie. Please pray for my father's soul.