Posts tagged eulogy
Posts tagged eulogy
Want to have the last word, forever? Myowneulogy.com allows you to do just that! Your video message can be played at your funeral or wake, addressing your family, friends and foes. You can send a specific message to anyone with an e-mail address in the future long after you’re gone. But, we need your help to add features to the site and make sure your life memories are saved for eternity. Come check out the rewards for your contribution!
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About 8 or 9 years ago I was reading Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People when I came across the concept of writing my own eulogy. The process of writing it changed my perspective on life and how I want to live. Breaking news – we all die. Go tell all your friends! I’ll start an email chain letter that you can forward around. It will be viral.
But seriously, since I can remember I’ve had a fascination with death. For a long time I was petrified of it. I remember going to Niagara Falls with my family when I was in elementary school. Both my brothers were in college in upstate New York and we were celebrating Easter up near the falls. There is a fence near the falls that keeps tourists from getting too close to the edge of a cliff and falling into the deep deep gorge – my brother leaned over the fence to grab a pen that was left there and I remember my heart sinking as I watched his bodyweight shift slowly to the gorge side. He was, in retrospect, in very little danger of falling, but I was ten years old and could barely handle going over bridges – I was scared of most things. I battled this fear/fascination for a long time – I consistently chose to push myself outside of the fear by doing things like whitewater rafting and riding rollercoasters. These were controlled and fairly tame activities, but they helped me deal with things.
Like many people, I dealt with some tragedy in my teenage years – mortality became a real thing that could not be ignored. Then I stumbled along the idea of writing my own eulogy. I haven’t looked back.
I’m not going to share what my eulogy looks like – my hope is that it shows through my actions (at least more often than not). And that’s the purpose of the exercise anyway – that old adage of show don’t tell. The practice can really be applied to everything – life, work, family, relationships, friendships, etc. Do you return your phone calls? Expect the most from others? Stick to your word? Do you listen more than you talk? Obviously I don’t have a clue what’s important to you, but maybe you don’t know what’s important to you either. Or maybe you know what’s important but you have no idea how to execute the action associated with the value (that’s when help is necessary).
I dare you to do it – write your own eulogy. It’s scary, but it might change you a little bit…for the better.
I rewrite mine every couple years as I change and as my life changes, but there are some things about me that I hope, regardless of when I die, are shared at my funeral.
“The first thing that happens is bliss, at least it was like that in my case.”
I grabbed a pen and began writing my brother’s words as he spoke. Nothing would have been odd about this had he been sitting next to me or on the phone. But he was dead. He died three weeks earlier after being hit by a car. I’d been a mess ever since, so depressed over Billy’s death I could barely lift my head from the pillow. But on this day, I was awakened at dawn by his unmistakable voice calling my name.“Annie, Annie it’s me. It’s Billy. Get up and get the red notebook.”
The red notebook he told me to get had been a birthday gift from him the year before. I remember it seemed strange, his giving me a blank book with an inscription that read: “Dear Annie, Everyone needs a book dedicated to them. Read between the lines.”
As cryptic as it was, I don’t think either of us could have imagined what it would be used for. But that red notebook became our book, mine and Billy’s, a record of my encounters with my dead brother as he spoke to me about his journey through the afterlife.
Feeling a Divine Presence
When I first heard Billy’s voice, I wasn’t sure if I was having some sort of strange grief-induced reaction to make me feel better about his departure from earth. But as my brother went on speaking, for the first time since his death I felt happy. I knew Billy was okay as he assured me;
“There’s nothing hard or cruel for me anymore. I’m drifting weightlessly through these gorgeous stars and moons and galaxies twinkling all around me. The whole atmosphere is filled with a soothing hum, like hundreds of thousands of voices are singing to me but they’re so far away I can just barely hear them. And although I can’t exactly say anyone was here to greet me, I feel a divine presence, a kind, loving, beneficent presence, twinkling all around me.”
When Billy was alive, he was far from perfect. My bad boy brother did a lot of things that many people would consider big mistakes. Although the end of his life was filled with darkness as he battled his addictions and lost the war, my brother was healed by the light as soon as he left his body. According to Billy:
1. What lies beyond this world is a realm of absolute love that reaches far outside the limits of human understanding.
2. Some believe there’s a judgment day after you die, but Billy says the opposite. There’s “No-Judgment Day.”
3. As you experience the unconditional love of the divine presence, you begin to feel that way towards yourself, unconditional.
So whatever our struggles, whatever our truth, whatever darkness we may encounter, Billy wants us to know that, “The shadow is illusory and temporary. Bliss, ultimately bliss and light, are the truer and stronger reality.”
People often ask if hearing Billy’s voice from the afterlife is frightening. Not at all. As he speaks, the bliss of his world flows into mine and I feel almost euphoric. According to Billy, this is just the smallest taste of what awaits each of us when we pass into the hereafter.
Eulogy for Aaron Swartz by his Father
Robert Green Ingersoll, from a Eulogy for a Child. (via oinonio)
Robert G. Ingersoll (Photo credit: Political Graveyard)
Your eulogy doesn’t have to be sad or serious, it can be whatever you want, after all, it is your own eulogy, so go ahead, get something off your chest! If you can top this one please upload it on our web site at myowneulogy.com!
Your frail but seemingly eternal form was filled with years upon years of
Cigarette smoking, hazy alcoholism (ABC Stout) -
I saw that once or twice a year.
Your tragedies were kept in your eyes (they held so much) and I knew not of them;
But you were in pain you found relief in
How do you want to be remembered? Create your own eulogy video to be played at your funeral or leave a message in your own words!
It’s nice if you have a relative as witty as this guy to tell the stories of your life and liven up your funeral, but, wouldn’t you want to have the last word? leave a message to be played at your funeral and encourage others to share some of your anecdotes and times spent together. Your own eulogy video can make your loved ones have closure and peace at the time you depart from them, plus, let’s face it, nobody really wants to take up the task of speaking in front of a crowd in such an emotional time, you can take up the burden of coming up with your eulogy and speaking in front of a crowd away from them. So go ahead, jot down the best moments of your life and upload your own eulogy video at myowneulogy.com (unless of course you can find this guy and ask him to do it for you!).