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Rituals After death - are they necessary ?
Hare Krishna Devotees,
I am asking this question as bit confused as to whether it is necessary to perform the rituals after the death of family members, from the beginning we have seen and performed these rituals but as we have very close one who has decided to donate their body after death, so no rituals will be performed as body will be handed over to the medical team.
In Krishna consciousness, we understand the soul leave the body and goes into the another one, so the material body left behind is of no use so does this matter whether we burn the body or not?
Just want to make sure they take the right decision.
Hare Krishna Girish. As I mentioned the individual soul has a responsibility for the body that is provided by the Demigods. Unless one is completely liberated from material existence, their soul is covered with a certain conditioning. If they leave their body it does not mean they are free from their karma. Karma is definitely related to the gross material body and the subtle body, witch are both manifest due to material conditioning. The soul will enter a new body based on the karmic circumstances and the desires of the living entity. As everything is accounted for by the law of karma, then one is due to experience karmic reactions wether they are good or bad even if they have left their current body. This is because the soul is responsible for the material body that is gifted to them by the Lord. Of course it is a very good intention do donate one's body for the welfare of others. However this may have unwanted implications when considering the Karmic law. As unfortunately not all individuals are adhering to higher spiritual understanding. The majority of people in this world are living sinful lives according to the vedas. As people in general are seeking to fulfill their own desires without dovetailing their activities to serve the Lord. Srila Prabhupada speaks about philanthropy in the Nectar of Instruction, and he mentions that yes these philanthropic works may relieve suffering temporarily, however they will not provide any permanent solution. That is why practicing Krishna consciousness gets to the root of all problems by ending the repeated cycle of birth and death, and also solving the problems of society by evolving people's conciousness so they do not live a life that neglects karmic injunctions. If an individual's life is saved by having the good fortune to receive a new organ, however unless that person is living in accordance with the instructions of a bonafide Guru and Sastra then this will have unfavorable reactions for the donar as they are responsible for what they do with the body God has gifted them. I hope this clarified for you the point I was trying to convey. Haribol. Your Servant. Bhakta David.