Antyesti (Hindu funeral rites)

Antyesti rites are the final sacraments in a series that ideally begins at the moment of conception and is performed at each important stage of a man’s life.

Imagine how Western sex would change if the moment of conception were treated as a holy event and celebrated with a ceremony!  What would such a ceremony look like?

Imagine being so aware of death that one performs a ceremony centered around death at every milestone of one’s life.  Can you imagine the college graduation ceremonies?

It appears from the article that the oldest son may participate in the cremation. Is there an awful, even Freudian, symbolism in a son setting fire to the body of a dead father?  At least the death duties are performed hands-on by family members rather than delegated to a mortician.

With such an everyday awareness of death in the East, why is life so cheap there?


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