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Obon Festival in Japan Remembers Ancestors

The crow is a member of the corvid family which includes ravens, magpies and blue jays. These birds are highly intelligent and have a complex language. Crows are mischievous buggers that like to steal shiny items and are suspicious and shy. Some crows live in flocks called murders and musters. The Celts believed that crows were an omen of death and conflict, and associated them with death transitions.

Queen Mary - In the verse, how does your garden grow, the nursery rhyme alludes to the garden being a cemetery and it growing with the bodies of heretics burned at the stake. Meanwhile, silver bells and cockle shells acted as colloquialisms for instruments of torture, where silver bells were thumbscrews used to crush the thumb between two hard surfaces and cockle shells were torture devices used on the victims genitals.

Sears Tombstones - Long before Sears introduced their Christmas Sears’ Wish Book, and retail juggernauts Costco and Walmart wholesalers began crossing over into the territory of the funeral industry by offering discounted caskets, urns and floral arrangements, Sears had introduced a new subsidiary to their infamous catalog known as the Sears, Roebuck & Co. Tombstones and Monuments catalog.

Professional Mourners have played a part in funeral ceremonies for thousands of years. In many countries, tradition dictates that the family of the dead, especially children and grandchildren, must express their grief in a very outward manner. Not crying enough or at sufficient decibel levels would be seen as a lack of filial piety so people started hiring professional mourners to ensure a noisy and very passionate farewell.

Palmistry is believed to foretell one’s future, from riches to ruins, family life, personal accomplishments and even one’s fate. This practice is found the world over and is alive in different religions and cultures. Take a look at the lines and creases on your hands, each can possibly tell a anecdote or a chapter of your life. A palmist or palm reader can identity each marking on your hand giving you insight to the future that awaits you.

Visit a Cemetery Day In celebration of October’s rituals of remembrance,, International Memorialization Supplier Organization (IMSA), Kates-Boylston Publications and American Cemetery Magazine are proud to announce the second annual “Visit a Cemetery Day” on Sunday, October 28, 2012 – a day marked to commemorate the history and traditions of everyone’s local community cemetery.

El velorio del Angelito by Violeta Parra

decoration sedlec ossuary

Horseshoes are the Door of Life - Traditionally, horseshoes have been crafted by blacksmiths, this action alone gives the horseshoe good luck powers due to the fact that blacksmithing was considered to be an extremely lucky trade because the work required the use of one of the main elements – fire

A Wiccan Funeral - The Triple Goddess or triple moon is a Goddess symbol that represents the Maiden (youth), Mother (fertility), and Crone (wisdom) as the waxing, full, and waning moon

One of Queen Victoria's mourning outfits, including underwear and bearing royal seals which verifies its authenticity, is up for auction on June 30, 2012

Wicca and Death - The Wheel represents the constant movement and change of life. We are set upon the wheel at birth and continually move forward learning lessons and testing ourselves for spiritual development and enlightenment until our death when the wheel stops turning

History of Memorial Day - The National VA Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio dates to 1867 when it was established as a final resting place for veterans who died while living at the Central Branch National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers. Photo by Photography by Mac McMeans &

Flowers for Sympathy - Traditional funeral flower arrangements called for flowers in the colors of red and white (and occasionally blue) only

The Seventh Seal an Allegory for Death - In the movie The Seventh Seal, Death appears to the knight and tells him it is his time. The knight challenges Death to a chess game for his life

For Whom the Bell Tolls - The ringing of a church bell to announce a death is called a death knell

Lest We Forget - The remembrance poppy originated in the United States in 1920 and was inspired by the poem In Flanders Fields which was written by a Canadian doctor and Lieutenant Colonel John McRae. He wrote the poem in 1915 after witnessing the death of a friend during World War I

Measuring Life with the Sands of Time - The hourglass remains a symbol of the passing of our lives; serving as a reminder that life is indeed finite and death is certain

Symbols in Immortality - Symbols of immortality can be traced back to ancient cultures that differ around the world

A History of Hallowe’en - The custom of carving pumpkins originated with the Irish who carved turnips into faces to scare lost souls away

Death Masks - The Egyptians believed that death masks were constructed to give the dead individual a face in his eternal life

Candles and Death - Candles are used ceremonially across nearly every religion, often as a symbol of reverence to the dead

Release of a White Dove - Generally a single white dove is released symbolizing the loved one's spirit leaving the Earth but a whole flock can be released, symbolizing family previously departed, after which a single dove is released that meets the waiting flock and they fly away together

What is the Purpose of Embalming?