People love humanist funerals for their compassion, their honesty and their humour: they choose them for what they include, not what they exclude.
Here in the UK, cremation accounts for about 75% of all funerals, but there is a growing desire for a more natural and ecological approach to death and dying. Not far from me in East Lothian there is a natural woodland burial site called Binning Memorial Wood, and I’ve been privileged to conduct a number … Continue Reading
Humanists believe we should celebrate the one life we have, but we also believe that grieving and mourning are fundamental to the healing process. Celebration isn’t obligatory, and it would be wrong to think that’s what a humanist funeral has to be.
My role is to speak for the bereaved, and the more accurately I do that, the better the ceremony. Having multiple contributions from family and friends writing from wherever in the world they happen to be allows me to create a richly textured, multi-faceted portrait.
How David Bowie and the coronavirus are changing the way we deal with death
I’ve only just come across this post, which dates from September 2014. I didn’t share it at the time because I thought it might be insensitive, but I’m doing so now not so much because time has passed, but because it reminds me so acutely why it’s so important to honour those we love. Appropriately … Continue Reading
Assisted dying is an emotive subject, on which even humanists are not of one mind.
This year, lets honour the people who risked everything to prevent war breaking out in the first place: Civil Servants.
Yesterday was the hundredth anniversary of the very first ceremony of Remembrance at the Cenotaph in London, and while we have long since lost all direct connection to the Great War, we still need to take the time to stop and think about what we’ve learned, and failed to learn, from one of the most … Continue Reading
Devika Bhat wrote an incredibly moving article in The Guardian a few days ago about dealing with the loss of her baby daughter in pregnancy. You can read it here. As she wrote, ‘I almost came unstuck when confronted with the task of choosing a reading: there is no established narrative around grieving for a … Continue Reading