On Death & Mourning: A Little Comfort

Not our typical blog, but if it helps you feel better, it helps you move better.

I went to a funeral the other day. The role of the priest, minister or rabbi is always a tough one when someone dies.  They have to console the inconsolable.  The priest at this funeral wasn’t great.  He kept insisting that the dead person was just sleeping, and that it would be accurate to tell kids the dead are merely sleeping.  As a child that would have terrified me.  I’d never go to bed again.

But then he said something that filled me with happiness. Ultimately, his words were not overly profound, but I’d never had someone put death quite this way.  Full disclosure:  I’m not religious or spiritual—a fact people are often surprised to learn.  I don’t have that gene.  But like Mark Twain, I appreciate people who do.  There are moments I wish I could believe in something to experience a glimpse of comfort when tormented by grief, but more often than not I’m happy believing in the fallibility of science.

I’ve heard many people say we should be comforted to know that when we die we will be reunited with the person whose life […]