This is a photo of a mass burial on Hart Island, New York. This is where they are burying unaccounted for bodies. Those that have died of the Corona Virus. It is shocking and bizarre. This war we are in.
I am struck hard at the moment by how much we do, and how much we accept as normal, needs to change. Burials and funerals are just one of these things for me. As I write this, my brother must attend a Jewish funeral in Joburg. An old family friend whose only daughter is in Cape Town. Of course she cannot go.
I have always been uncomfortable with how much it costs to deal with our dead. I hate that when I leave my body I am going to be an expense for somebody. I find this so distasteful. I hate that there are funeral policies and burial societies that bankrupt people in the life that they are trying to live. I hate the inbuilt threat of it all as well. I hate that funerals and burials are tied in with how we should remember and honour the dead. It doesn’t make sense.
And so much of the ritual, the religious rules, the how of it all, is outdated, archaic, absurd, and deeply inappropriate for the world of today. It is my wish, that while we rewrite how we do things now to move into a new world, that we relook at how we deal with the dead.