Preparing a Baha'i for Burial
There are instructions in the Kitab-i-Aqdas about how to prepare a Baha'i for burial but they are general rather than specific so we filled in some details with instructions found online for similar burials. We hope this will help even those with no experience to do a credible job of preparation.
First, you will need:
- a Baha'i burial ringThe ring (for adults only) reads: I came forth from God, and return unto Him, detached from all save Him, holding fast unto His Name, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
This can be purchased through the Baha'i book stores in your area. Or contact the nearest Spiritual Assembly for their advice.
- rose water
- shrouding clothsA total of 34 ft. of material (silk or cotton) about 4 feet wide dividing into five pieces: 2 are 4x4 and 1 each of 4x6, 4x8, and 4x12 (the instructions below suggest tearing a one inch strip off the 12 ft. sheet for use as strings -- other cotton or silk cord could be substituted, we assume).
- a casket made of hardwood, stone (or cement), or glass (fiberglass?).
We have recently used caskets made entirely of wood, purchased from http://www.casketdepot.ca/
We have also had a couple of caskets made by a local woodworker.
For washing the body you will need cloths and paper towels and several plastic bags for disposal of the cloths.
The Prayer for the Dead must be said anytime after death and before internment.
There are useful instructions online for washing the body and wrapping it in the cloths. They are for Muslim burial but seem to apply equally to a Baha'i burial.