Greg Parker 24.01.55-16.05.14 - page 11

Thismarks theendof the
funeral service.
Greg’s remainswill nowbeescorted
to thegraveside,whereoneofGreg’s
favouriteprayerswill bechanted, and
twoBaha’i prayers for thedepartedwill
be read. The last of these isoftencalled
‘TheLongPrayer for theDead’. As it is an
occasional prayer, herearea fewwords
of explanation toplace it incontext:
Ritualshavebeen largelyexcluded
in theBaha’i Faith. Oneof the few
exceptions is this last prayer,which is
theonlyobligatorypart of aBaha’i burial
service. It is very simpleandcomprises a
short passage followedby the repetition
of theArabicword ‘Allah-u-Abha’which
means ‘God is theAll Glorious’and then
sixverses, nineteen times eachverse.
Onpaper thishas littlemeaningbut
whenone stands in thepresenceof
adeparted lovedone,withaheart
breakingat this final separation, and
listens to theseversesbeing repeated
over andover again, it is as if each
repetitionflowsdown intoones’heart
likeaheavenlybalm, coolingand
soothing it. Not only reconciliation to
thewill ofGod takesplace, but ablessed
feelingof consolation seems tomelt that
inner numbness awayuntil in theend
apeaceful senseof exaltation, of
detachment from theworldand its
vicissitudes, fillsone’sbeing.When
viewed in this light, thisprayer is a
preciousgift to thosemourning
the lossof their lovedone.
1...,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 12,13,14,15,16
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