The repertoires of contemporary funerary laments, collected and recorded during my field work in Luxor, reveal the fact that many lamenters compare death to earthquakes and natural cataclysms, including cosmic events and other spontaneous acts of nature which trigger destruction and misfortune.
To the women lamenters, "the house"--in symbolic terms--invokes the sense of clan or extended family, and the continuity of life across generations.
Therefore, (semi-) professional lamenters
have had a secure role in traditional societies, guaranteeing with their poetical and technical mastery both the successful accomplishment of the ritual and its emotionally rational calibration.
Lamenting that is a work of the Spirit fosters compassion, whereby lamenters
become "kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you" (Eph 4:32).
The combination of Handel's astonishingly vivid, pictorial score and the compelling, urgent account of it by Paul McCreesh's Gabrieli Consort and Players proved irresistible almost up to the final moment; it was only a maudlin sequence of numbers mourning the defunct Saul which allowed impatience to set in, and wonderment at the hypocrisy of those lamenters
who had had so much for which to hate the psychotic ruler (perhaps there was an element of drumming up support for the Georgian monarchy here).
5) But most of the contributors to Steve Bruce's valuable collection, Religion and Modernization: Historians and Sociologists Debate the Secularization Thesis, for example, are more lamenters
than either triumphalists or neutral observers.
Who these modern lamenters
are one would like to know.
typically decried the rationalizing ethos of Zivilisation (civilization) and Gesellschaft (society) that displaced a spiritually enriching Kultur (culture) and a spiritually binding Gemeinschaft (community).