My fear of death must have its roots from the fear of the unknown. I always say that death does not mean an end but rather a transition from one form to another. But what form comes next after life? The wisest gurus in history and scientists of recent years have given us ideas some of which I have adapted to believe, but deep inside I know that in the end they are all but a product of human experience and do not tell us what really is beyond there.
Three nights before undas, a beautiful ritual in the style of the Babaylans was led by Pol to honor the dead (umalagad). Food, flowers and dance were offered to the ancestors and the recently parted under the watchful eyes of the diwatas.
I think the ritual actually does more benefit to us, the living, than to the departed. In remembering them, we recall that part of us that has gotten lost when they left this world.