Celebrating, not mourning provides comfory for the living

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Celebrating, not mourning provides comfort for the living Grief and mourning associated with death have become so deeply rooted in our society that they seem practically unavoidable. Why is death viewed with such dread and terror? Merriam-Webster and most dictionaries define death as the permanent cessation of vital functions; the end of life; destruction.


It seems time to change our cultural values whose foundation lies upon untested theories that create lengthy and distressing models which ensue in more depression rather than alleviating it. In contrast, dia de los muertos or day of the dead celebrated in Mexico is an ideal model focused on reuniting and honouring beloved ancestors, family and friends. It was believed that life is only a dream and a human being was truly awake only after his death. Thereby, death was not deemed as a mysterious and fearful ending but a realistic familiar makeup, as much a part of life as life itself. The importance of this day can be judged from the fact that it constitutes a national holiday. Festivals are arranged to commemorate ancestors. Private altars are built decorated with sugar skulls, marigold flowers, favorite foods, beverages, possessions of the deceased. Thus, focus is placed on praying for the deceased and incurring their pleasure; the exact opposite of grief culture. So instead of blindly following mourning and grieving rituals, we should adopt a more rational approach (Rambo, 2005). Celebration of mortality is not restricted to Mexico. ...
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