Rel 334

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1. Provide you interpretation of the non-Christian funeral rituals and practices. The non-Christian funeral rituals vary greatly compared to the traditional Christian practices. The Parsi people of India take the deceased to the Seven Towers of Silence where they wait for vultures to pick the body clean, then collect the remaining bones and bury them. Hindus and Buddhists practice cremation because they believe that cremation allows the soul to continue its journey into another incarnation. Hindus also practiced sutee, in which the widow of the deceased would willingly be cremated with her husband’s body. This act was later banned by the British in 1829, but some still throw themselves into the flames. Muslims forbid cremation because according to the Qu’ran, Muhammad taught that Allah used fire only to punish the wicked.

2. What are the common elements of Christian funeral rites and practices? After an individual’s death, typically visitations, wakes and funerals are held. The corpse is either buried or cremated. A Christian funeral usually consists of a scripture reading, by a minister, a eulogy by a family member, prayer and song. There is also usually a grave-side ceremony where prayers are said right before the burial.

3. What differences exist between the funeral rituals and practices of the various Christian denominations? There are some differences between the practices of Christian denominations. For example Christian Scientists have no funeral rites because their founder denied the reality of death. The Church of Christ allows no instruments including organs at its funerals. Mormons are given sacred undergarments that they are to wear everyday and when they die, their bodies are already in these garments and they are placed in a casket. Freemasons conduct their own funeral rites and they insist that their ceremony will be the last one before the burial or cremation.

4. Present and discuss at least one non-religious approach to funeral...
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