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The Liveliest Mourning Customs for Celebrating a Life

Category: 

Grieving Process

Posted On: Mar 28, 2017

The Liveliest Mourning Customs for Celebrating a Life

After a death, some people prefer to celebrate the life lived rather than mourn the loss. That's a lovely, positive, and optimistic way of looking at things. It's not right for everyone, so there's no judgment. However, if you prefer to focus on the meaningful impact someone made in the world, the joy they brought to you, and the way they lived their life, then something more celebratory may be up your alley.

Host a Musical Funeral

In New Orleans, the jazz funeral is a popular procession, so much so that such scenes are typical in books and movies that take place in Louisiana. To do it the New Orleans way, the music has to be that signature mix of traditions from Cajun, French, West African, and Black cultures. The music helps to create the combination of grief and joy, all tinged with passion. To put your own spin on a funeral like this, you can do several things: keep it traditional, of course; find a band or a group of musicians who can play your loved one's favorite music; or make it more modern by using technology to play your mourning music.

Give Your Loved One a Fantasy Sendoff

A certain Ghanaian custom just got noticed in pop-culture thanks to Buzzfeed. Specifically, Ghanaians always hope that they can be put to rest in coffins made in the image of their passions, their work, or something else they love. They long for fantasy coffins, which don't have to be opulent—although they can be, of course. Still, being able to bury a loved one in something that represents a significant aspect of their lives is definitely a lovely idea.

Have a Cremation Celebration

There are several cultures throughout Asia that practice cremation celebrations on a large scale. In most of the world, that's impossible. For example, in the western world, it's rare for anyone to be present during the cremation process except for the person in charge, although sometimes the closest relatives do stay for the duration. Still, if your loved one chooses to be cremated, you can have a celebration with the ashes that focuses on a life well lived.

Celebrating the life rather than grieving the death doesn't take away feelings of grief, but it keeps your focus on the positive. The world was lucky to have your loved one in it, and it helps to recognize that.