A funeral is not death, any more than baptism is birth or marriage union. All three are the clumsy devices, coming now too late, now too early, by which Society would register the quick motions of man.
Ceremony and ritual spring from our heart of hearts: those who govern us know it well, for they would sooner deny us bread than dare alter the observance of tradition.
Ceremony is the smoke of friendship.
Ceremony was but devised at first to set a gloss on faint deeds, hollow welcomes, recanting goodness, sorry ere 'Tis shown; but where there is true friendship, there needs none.
Every ceremony or rite has a value if it is performed without alteration. A ceremony is a book in which a great deal is written. Anyone who understands can read it. One rite often contains more than a hundred books.
It is superstitious to put one's hopes in formalities, but arrogant to refuse to submit to them.
We must learn which ceremonies may be breached occasionally at our convenience and which ones may never be if we are to live pleasantly with our fellow man.