Like birth, death is accompanied by many traditions and rituals, mostly based on religion.
Turkish people have also their own beliefs about the inevitable death and how the death happens. Turkish people have had different beliefs and cultures in the course of time and they have different death comprehensions. For Turkish people, death has been accepted as the getting out of the spirit from the human body.
Turkish people had different beliefs about the coming of death. These are such signs as psychologic signs, physiological signs, dream signs and animal signs. For example, when a dog howls for so long, Turkish people think that it is a sign of death.
In some religion the body is buried but some is burned. In our religion we don’t burn our bodys we always bury them.
In our country, the burial of the dead is happened in order of ablution of the dead, shroud of dead, coffin of the dead and the entombment of the dead after the funeral prayer.
Before the funeral the body is ceremoniously washed by professional washers. This is based on the Islamic belief that a person who has died and has not been properly cleaned will not be allowed to enter paradise.
The coffin, which is covered by a green cloth, is carried to the mosque on the shoulders of family, friends and neighbors.
The bearers rush from the back of the cortege to the front to be able to touch and carry the coffin as often as possible, which is a sign of respect
Turkish people also mourn after the death. The people who lost the people they love don’t wear clothes with light colors, don’t eat much, don’t have fun, don’t use electronic devices, don’t get shaved and don’t go to any wedding ceremonies.
Turkish people mourns 40 days after the death. There are remembrance ceremonies at the first day and first Friday of these 40 days, and sometimes at 52nd day. The most important day is the 40th day after the death because this day the mourning is going to be over. The ceremony at this day gets held by the owner of the funeral.
In this ceremony, some food and helva get delivered, and an Islamic memorial ceremony called “Mevlit” gets held.
And also ombstones have a long tradition in Turkey. They are often pieces of art and bear witness to history as well as being inscribed with poetry and the life story of the deceased.
In the past neighbours of the deceased person gave meals to the sorrowful family for a while, nowadays it is becoming less.
People, for centuries, have been reading Quran for the deceased for days and visit the tomb on special days.