Information for Undertakers Arranging a funeral for a Buddhist in the Tibetan tradition
The following information is based on the Buddhist belief that the consciousness continues after the body dies. The first 3 days following death are considered to be particularly important, whereby the subtle process of the mind disengaging from the body is taking place.
We would be grateful if you could bear in mind the following points:
- Where the body has been washed and dressed by the nurses, please just lift the body into the coffin and avoid unnecessary contact or movement. If the body does need to be washed, please just do the absolute minimum.
- If paper prayers or a mandala blanket have been placed on the body, please replace them after putting the deceased in the coffin. There may also be additional pieces to go in the coffin.
- Please refrigerate the body rather than embalm it if at all possible.
- Because Buddhists would prefer not to be embalmed, requesting the speedy completion of the cremation forms would be very much appreciated.
- Buddhists believe that it is possible to help the person who has just died, by trying to maintain a tranquil and compassionate environment around them. Friends and family may want to sit by the body to pray, so facilitating this would be very much appreciated.
- Cremation or burial should not take place before 3½ days have elapsed.
You can always contact the Bardo Group at Kagyu Samye Dzong London on 0203 327 1650 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please leave a message if there is no one available and someone will return your call.