The language of flowers seems to be one that is universal. Many times we are unable to express ourselves in words, and flowers seem to convey our message. Whether we are celebrating the beginning of a new life, an anniversary, a birthday, or mourning the passing of a loved one, flowers seem to speak the language of love, sympathy and respect.
Evidence of flowers used in funeral ceremonies can be traced back to 62,000 B.C. This evidence, found in a cave in northern Iraq, led to an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records. This entry lists the practice of human burial being one of the oldest forms of religious activity.
The fragility of flowers seems to be symbolic of the transitory nature of life. Their beauty helps to comfort us and soften the trauma of death. The visual beauty of the flowers can represent community support for the bereaved.
Some people question the practicality of sympathy flowers. However, we could ask how practical is the funeral service itself? Even the act of memoralizing the deceased can then itself be put into question.
Throughout history flowers have, and should continue to be, a tribute to the deceased. Let us continue the tradition of floral tribute to express our love, sympathy, and respect for the deceased and those left behind.