nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Forum Index nglreturns.myfreeforum.org
Nglreturns is a forum to discuss religion, philosophy, ethics etc...

NGLReturns Daily Quiz - Play here!
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   Join! (free) Join! (free)
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 


Humanist funeral
Page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Atheist chat
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Please Register and Login to this forum to stop seeing this advertising.






Posted:     Post subject:

Back to top
Lexilogio
Well Known Chatterbox...


Joined: 25 Aug 2008
Posts: 7585


Location: North of the Watford Gap

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:26 am    Post subject: Humanist funeral  Reply with quote

I found myself at another funeral yesterday, for, in my family, the last of my Grandmothers generation.

They were an interesting bunch, who had all stayed close, and all, bar one, had completely rejected religion. This aunt, in particular, had become an atheist, so her funeral service was a humanist one.

It was odd, the first time I've been to a humanist service. The chap running it was pleasant, and it flowed well. In many ways, for me, it missed something essential. But I completely respect the views of my late aunt, and particularly those of my cousins.
_________________
Lexi
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
trentvoyager
Moderator


Joined: 05 Jul 2009
Posts: 2570


Location: Nottingham, United Kingdom

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:07 am    Post subject: Re: Humanist funeral Reply with quote

Lexilogio wrote:
I found myself at another funeral yesterday, for, in my family, the last of my Grandmothers generation.

They were an interesting bunch, who had all stayed close, and all, bar one, had completely rejected religion. This aunt, in particular, had become an atheist, so her funeral service was a humanist one.

It was odd, the first time I've been to a humanist service. The chap running it was pleasant, and it flowed well. In many ways, for me, it missed something essential. But I completely respect the views of my late aunt, and particularly those of my cousins.


Interestingly, as you know Lexi - I went to a humanist funeral earlier this year of a close friend, where I did a reading of the thoughts of the deceased - and I had the exact opposite feeling. I felt that I had at last gone to a funeral that reflected the wishes of the person; and not the dictates of some priest who had no knowledge of; or at the most a very passing acquaintance with the deceased - which has been my experience in the past.

Even with my parnters mother - who was a devout Catholic - there was no attempt made by the priest to reflect the person she truly was. Maybe that is just the religious services I've attended - but I find it sad that so many representatives of the Churches just seem to "go through the motions".
_________________
Wasn't Billy Liar a great play.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Ketty
Moderator


Joined: 26 Aug 2008
Posts: 7376


Location: Walking the narrow path, singing merrily and living Victoriously

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:10 am    Post subject: Re: Humanist funeral Reply with quote

Condolences on the loss of your aunt, Lexi.

Lexilogio wrote:

It was odd, the first time I've been to a humanist service. The chap running it was pleasant, and it flowed well. In many ways, for me, it missed something essential.


The first time I went to a humanist funeral was that of pal who I'd befriended on a message board.  I travelled to London to attend her interment in her family grave, and the 'service' was held graveside by a humanist celebrant.   She'd been raised in a different religion and in her adult years had rejected all matters of faith, although we used to chat easily about all that 'stuff' and whilst she was alive (we knew at that point she was terminally ill), I gave her a copy of the NT which she'd never read before.

I felt exactly the same as you.  It was lovely, really lovely, very touching and moving, with poems and readings and music played on a CD player, but for me it was missing an essential something.  It felt sort of empty.
_________________
<><Although Christians and Mormons use the same words such as grace, faith, God and sin, they mean very different things by them. Beware the poison!><>
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Ketty
Moderator


Joined: 26 Aug 2008
Posts: 7376


Location: Walking the narrow path, singing merrily and living Victoriously

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:24 am    Post subject: Re: Humanist funeral Reply with quote

trentvoyager wrote:

I felt that I had at last gone to a funeral that reflected the wishes of the person; and not the dictates of some priest who had no knowledge of; or at the most a very passing acquaintance with the deceased - which has been my experience in the past.


Again TV, that has been my experience too.  But then again, if the deceased and the family aren't 'church goers' in that sense, what knowledge would a priest have of them?  That's not an excuse btw, because imho, the priest for hire should not be just 'going through the motions'.

trentvoyager wrote:
Even with my parnters mother - who was a devout Catholic - there was no attempt made by the priest to reflect the person she truly was. Maybe that is just the religious services I've attended - but I find it sad that so many representatives of the Churches just seem to "go through the motions".


Yes I agree.  In the sense in which we're talking the 'worst' funerals I've been to have been those at the local crem and conducted by 'hire in' ministers of the major expressions of church, ie the Cof E and the Catholics.  There is a hope (and a 'joy') because the deceased knew Christ, but the priests should not sit back on their laurels about all of that, and need to be aware that not all the people attending have that same hope.  And there's no excuse other than that of laziness, imho, for not accurately reflecting the character and life of the deceased.

My dad did not have a faith but it was my own senior priest who conducted the funeral.  He spent several hours with mum, talking about dad and learning about them and their lives together.  When he spoke, he spoke of dad as if he'd known him for years.  That is how he conducts all the funerals he supervises and I guess for me, he set the bar very high.
_________________
<><Although Christians and Mormons use the same words such as grace, faith, God and sin, they mean very different things by them. Beware the poison!><>
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Lexilogio
Well Known Chatterbox...


Joined: 25 Aug 2008
Posts: 7585


Location: North of the Watford Gap

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Humanist funeral Reply with quote

trentvoyager wrote:
Lexilogio wrote:
I found myself at another funeral yesterday, for, in my family, the last of my Grandmothers generation.

They were an interesting bunch, who had all stayed close, and all, bar one, had completely rejected religion. This aunt, in particular, had become an atheist, so her funeral service was a humanist one.

It was odd, the first time I've been to a humanist service. The chap running it was pleasant, and it flowed well. In many ways, for me, it missed something essential. But I completely respect the views of my late aunt, and particularly those of my cousins.


Interestingly, as you know Lexi - I went to a humanist funeral earlier this year of a close friend, where I did a reading of the thoughts of the deceased - and I had the exact opposite feeling. I felt that I had at last gone to a funeral that reflected the wishes of the person; and not the dictates of some priest who had no knowledge of; or at the most a very passing acquaintance with the deceased - which has been my experience in the past.

Even with my parnters mother - who was a devout Catholic - there was no attempt made by the priest to reflect the person she truly was. Maybe that is just the religious services I've attended - but I find it sad that so many representatives of the Churches just seem to "go through the motions".


I do agree that it very much represented the wishes of the deceased. And there was a great deal about her as a person.
But I have seen that at religious funerals too - I think it comes down to the celebrant - how much work they put into it, into finding out and showing this person.
_________________
Lexi
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Powwow
Senior Community Member


Joined: 15 Dec 2010
Posts: 3793


Location: alberta canada

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few of my Aunts were taken back to the old Danish church my grandfather helped start and my uncle built when they came to Canada. Of course the pastors from the days that these ladies were living in the area and attending services were all long dead. So it gave me a weird sort of feeling when the pastors doing the funeral would announce to the audience that they didn't know my aunts.
For my dad the service was taken by a Baptist pastor, my cousin. He knew dad alot longer than I did. Mom's was taken by her pastor that knew her for 20yrs. It was so much better when the one delivering the service can also share their own memories of the departed. These services where done just as mom and dad would expect and demand the pastors to do. That is, don't you dare wrap the service up until you have preached the way of salvation!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Boss Cat
Junior Community Member


Joined: 15 Sep 2011
Posts: 365


Location: it's good here

PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2013 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A funeral is a different for a believer.

For non-believers a funeral can end up as saying nice things about you to celebrate your life at the time when you are as far from your life as you can be.  I'd rather  friends/family remember nice things about me when they want a laugh together, not part of a formal duty.  Either that or I'd like to be around to hear the nice things in person, what a waste otherwise!

To a believer a funeral is quite different, it's about our continuing relationship with God.  A clergyman doesn't have to know anything about the person or like him or approve of him.  My cousin, a vicar, did a funeral for a man once whose wife said 'he was a bastard the day I married him and he got worse everyday after that'.  One of the sons came up to my cousin afterwards and thanked him for not saying nice and untrue things about his father.

How would a Humanist funeral have been for him?  A pack of lies or 'what a git' and that's it?  Would a Humanist celebrant do a funeral for someone they didn't like, or for approve of?  It doesn't matter for a religious minister, it's not important, neither is it for the mourners, it's something different.

Humanist funerals are for the living, and I don't despise the human need for ritual.  But one of the sticking arguments I have in favour of the Established Church is over funerals.  If you are found dead and alone and unidentified on the road you will get as meaningful a funeral as the Queen, if you are evil or despised you will get the same.  Funerals aren't only for the popular and respected.  And that enriches all of us I think.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Shaker
Site Admin


Joined: 25 Aug 2008
Posts: 8694



PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2013 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boss Cat wrote:
A funeral is a different for a believer.

For non-believers a funeral can end up as saying nice things about you to celebrate your life at the time when you are as far from your life as you can be. I'd rather  friends/family remember nice things about me when they want a laugh together, not part of a formal duty. Either that or I'd like to be around to hear the nice things in person, what a waste otherwise!

Not a waste if, as you contradictorily say later on,

Quote:
Humanist funerals are for the living


*

Quote:
A clergyman doesn't have to know anything about the person or like him or approve of him.


Leading to the widely reported scenario of a clergyman saying patently absurd and palpably untrue things about a deceased that the mourners barely even recognise, which in the wrongness stakes is equivalent to giving me a religious funeral.

Quote:
How would a Humanist funeral have been for him?  A pack of lies or 'what a git' and that's it?
 

I suspect it would have been as true as tact and basic decency allows.

Quote:
Would a Humanist celebrant do a funeral for someone they didn't like, or for approve of?

It's their job. I assume so, though equally, as far as I'm aware no Humanist celebrant is duty-bound to take on any particular job: if they refuse, the family would presumably move on and find another celebrant, perhaps at the refusing celebrant's suggestion. I've heard of cases of religionist doctors who refuse to give any advice on abortion for example passing patients on to those doctors who don't mind. I should imagine that a similar sort of rule applies.

Quote:
If you are found dead and alone and unidentified on the road you will get as meaningful a funeral as the Queen

At the cheapest possible rate with, if the evidence I've seen is any indication, a handful of people there at the most as opposed to the multi-million pound, cream cake, bells and whistles affair lavished on some freeloading parasite dependent upon their accident of birth.
_________________
There’s no reason to be agnostic about ideas that are dramatically incompatible with everything we know about modern science. - Sean M. Carroll
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Boss Cat
Junior Community Member


Joined: 15 Sep 2011
Posts: 365


Location: it's good here

PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2013 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't see that I contradict myself - it's a waste for the deceased.  That's who a funeral is for, for believers.  But a Humanist funeral isn't for the deceased it?  A non religious funeral is for the living.

I don't understand the connection in your comment about a clergyman saying patently absurd and untrue things about someone and saying that's wrong.  Are you saying my cousin did that?  Or what?

You are wrong about there being a handful of people at the unidentified person's funeral.  There will be one mourner, someone from the Council to represent all of us.  Not a handful at all.  How would you rather it were done?  You refer to the cheapness of a pauper's funeral - how much would Humanists spend on it? Is a funeral only valuable according to how much is spent on it.

For believers the pomp or ceremony or grandeur of the coffin don't matter; the funeral of a pauper or a murderer means as much as the funeral of an emperor or a saint.  But if you aren't a believer how would you understand that?

Of course, I like a good party after a good funeral, but we can all have that, believers or not.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Shaker
Site Admin


Joined: 25 Aug 2008
Posts: 8694



PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2013 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boss Cat wrote:
I don't see that I contradict myself - it's a waste for the deceased.

Is it? Why is that? 
Quote:
That's who a funeral is for, for believers.

I must have missed that memo.  
Quote:
But a Humanist funeral isn't for the deceased it? A non religious funeral is for the living.

All funerals are for the living and none are for the deceased, given the (I would have thought) rather obvious fact that whether it's a Humanist funeral or the full bells and smells Catholic requiem mass, in both cases there's a slab of dead meat in a big box waiting to be fried or stuck in the ground to turn into soup.
Quote:
I don't understand the connection in your comment about a clergyman saying patently absurd and untrue things about someone and saying that's wrong.  Are you saying my cousin did that? Or what?

How the hell would I know? What did your cousin say?
Quote:
You are wrong about there being a handful of people at the unidentified person's funeral.  There will be one mourner, someone from the Council to represent all of us.  Not a handful at all.

Doubtless we seem to have different conceptions of what constitutes a handful of people.
Quote:
How would you rather it were done? You refer to the cheapness of a pauper's funeral - how much would Humanists spend on it?

No idea: ask a Humanist.
Quote:
Is a funeral only valuable according to how much is spent on it.

David 'Call Me Dave' Cameron or whoever made the arrangements for the not-quite-a-state-funeral-but bloody-nearly for Thatcher could give you a better answer on that than I could.
Quote:
For believers the pomp or ceremony or grandeur of the coffin don't matter

There go the aforementioned requiem masses, then. Catholic churches with them as well, thankfully.
Quote:
the funeral of a pauper or a murderer means as much as the funeral of an emperor or a saint.  But if you aren't a believer how would you understand that?

Quite right: I wouldn't. It's only dead meat being disposed of in one way or another.


_________________
There’s no reason to be agnostic about ideas that are dramatically incompatible with everything we know about modern science. - Sean M. Carroll
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Atheist chat All times are GMT + 1 Hour
Page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

Card File  Gallery  Forum Archive
Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group
Create your own free forum | Buy a domain to use with your forum