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Film Notes--Death Rituals.doc

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Religious Studies
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Sherry Smith

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Film Notes: “Death Rituals” (1998; 25 min. from series “Death: A Personal Understanding”) A person has died; a village mourns A community comes together in the ritual of the funeral Rituals make feeling and faith tangible; drawing them into the physical world Honoring beliefs, marking loss, giving voice to grief Linked to ancient chain of human experience In a moment of crisis rituals tell us that we are not alone Rituals for the dead body reveal our fears about death What do we do with the body that is honourable and appropriate? Do we burn it? Bury it deep? Does the body need to be intact? Every society does something Cremation – fire takes over “weak” body; purifies, cleanses Embalming masks rather than confirms reality of death; makes it seem almost pleasant; body made to look asleep Ron Grimes: offers personal accoun
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