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- a collection of essays on Neodruidic Studies
- a journal of Post-Reconstructionist Neopaganism





Saturday, October 22, 2011

On Roadside Shrines


A letter I have composed to be enclosed in a bottle to be left at roadside shrines…
the bottle is clearly marked on its outside :

“ATTENTION: 
Friends and grieving loved ones...
PLEASE READ”

The text of the letter enclosed in the bottle...


“ Friends:

The longer I make this text, the less likely it is that you will read it,
so I’ll try to be as brief as possible…

It is obvious that this location marks the site of a tragedy.
Someone wonderful was taken away from you by something that happened here.

We respect the magnitude of your loss and respect your need to grieve and to give them your continual tribute.

Yet if, in even the smallest way, you believe in the survival of the spirits of the departed, especially of those taken away from us suddenly in a moment of ultimate unfairness, we ask that you pause and please consider what you have been doing at this location.

Here I must be blunt…
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What happened here was horrible. Horrific...
Why celebrate it with a shrine, here… of all places, why here ?
Why tie the spirit of your loved one TO THIS, 
the site of their last moments of pain and terror?
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We all have to work toward releasing the spirits of our lost loved ones from unduly-fixed worldly bindings, whether that means at locations... or in our hearts.

That does not mean that shrines are wrong.

Shrines can be wonderful testaments to our love for the departed and they should be setup in appropriate settings. Yes, settings appropriate to the spirit of our loved ones, be it in your home or your garden or at the cemetery - - or even in a beautiful setting like at the beach or in the woods, or at some other location which they deeply loved or shared rich memories of with us.

With love and prayers for you and your loved one,

Signed,

CONCERNED FRIENDS FROM YOUR COMMUNITY "


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A downloadable PDF file of the above letter can be found HERE...

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