Letter: End to point scoring at funerals

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Sir: Thank you, Glenda Cooper ("The British way of death", 26 July), for trying to cheer us up about death. But it won't work. No amount of flowers or pretty woodland graves can alter the solemn reality: death is inevitable and death is final, and most of us are frightened of it.

One of the problems with death is that it makes us face the fact that much of what we spend our lives doing is futile. Money, power, pleasure - they all slip away from us as death approaches. So we don't talk about dying, and we try not to think about it.

The essence of religion is the preparation for death, and for the life beyond. Leave out God, and the futility of living and dying becomes almost unbearable. Don't tell me we're coping with death. We're just finding up-to-date ways of burying our heads in the sand.