Condolence: It is expressing sympathy to a misfortune or bereavement (one deprived of relative because of death).
Consolation: To give comfort or sympathy to unhappy person.
On death of a close relative, a sudden gap is created due to absence of that relative. Even the mentally strong person understanding every aspect of the event becomes shocked for a while. Here is the need of true consolation known as condolence.
I will tell the story in four divisions: Decision, time, place and technique.
- Decision: Decide whether your meeting the grieved person has any role to play in grieved situation. If answer is No, just forget the event. Either you are a close relative or a friend; your presence is must or you have formal relation, you will only be a part of crowd and nothing else. Just ask yourself and act.
- Time: Without seeing the customs or calendar, one should meet the relative at the earliest. Formal time fixed for special condolence meeting is only for formal and casual relations, if you are truly close one, do not wait .Do not find false excuses here and there, they are against your relations. My understanding tells avoid lunch/dinner time and resting/sleeping hours, early morning and late evening times.
- Place: The best place to go for condolence is where death has occurred and the relatives gathered are staying. Avoid meeting at the work place - say office, or anywhere on the road, at some third place you accidentally met and start your story.
- Method: The best method I have understood is meeting personally. Any words are hardly required. Your expressions tell all you want to. Still if you think it will not suffice, you can tell how you will miss one and your experiences with the departed soul. You can add how sure you are about facing the situation and what help you will offer to one present. Remember it is no place for exhibiting your smartness and intelligence if you have any. Avoid this cautiously.
Words can be rightly expressed on letter, E-mail via internet or SMS on mobile. Be honest, precise and true in writing. It will work.
Let me express my thanks to all who did this with me on demise of my mother. Vaishali and Rahul did the best as expected. The SMS to be praised were from Kaushal Suthar, Janak Panchal, Bhumika Naik to name the few. Amongst letters, one each from Dr Rohit Desai, Arvind Naik, Rekha Parmar and Dhamesh Kapadia gave right solace.
Well, condolence has a role on demise of close relative, but it should be immediate, silent and an a right manner. Otherwise instead of helping the grieved one, it disturbs.