It has become a common practice to say RIP (Rest in Peace) when someone passes away among Hindus. Is is accurate under Hindu faith?
We ought to understand the implication of words we say. “RIP” implies that the person is going to sleep/rest in their graves until the day of second coming of Jesus/ Al-Mahadi comes back and resurrects their body. The Last Judgment, Final Judgment, Day of Judgment, Judgment Day, or The Day of the Lord or in Islam Yawm al-Qiyamah or Yawm ad-Din is part of the eschatological world view of the Abrahamic religions.
For Hindus, the belief is that the living being is not a body but soul and the body acts just as an abode for the soul through one life. Soul leaves one body and acquires the new and the ones who are able to break the cycle of life achieves “Moksha” means liberation. Hence, this concept of resting in piece is not valid in Hinduism.
Soul is not reborn, nor is it able to find divinity within itself as per abrahamic religion doctrine. RIP is a concept from these other religions which say there is only one life and the soul rests till judgement day.
On the contrary, Shanti is only for an Atma disturbed by trauma of leaving the body, or carrying over disturbed feelings into next life.
So RIP is not at all compatible with Hinduism concepts of karma and cycle of life and death. In fact it might even be considered to an ‘abhishaap’ or curse as atma would no longer be able to evolve to mukti in future lives but would get locked into a standstill!! Certainly not an intended outcome, is it?!
Views borrowed from Ms Anke Maas of Germany