Guide to Conduct and...


Guide to Conduct and Ceremony

Part 2. Formalities concerning Family Affairs

Chapter 6. Funerary Rites

Section 1. About the Funerary Rites

Funerary rites (sangchang) are meant to send off a deceased person after the completion of life. For those who were close to the deceased, their grief will be immense; and for the deceased, it is the period when one discards the present body and receives a new one. Therefore, the spirit must be properly sent on to deliverance. Thus, this ceremony has two significant purposes: One is for the relatives and friends to share their feelings and affections, and perform formalities. The second is for the deceased to pray for the true nirvana and deliverance. If either one of these two important things, which are proper and due, are missing then, one cannot say that the ceremony will be properly carried out. To define what is primary and what is secondary, it would be correct to regard deliverance as primary and expressions of sorrow and sympathy and other formalities as secondary.