In Ecclesiastes 7:2 (The Bible) it says: "It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart." < I do not know of the versions of this in Indian Languages. We have a similar one in Malay > There are vesions that end with the phrase "...and the living will take it to heart". A visit to a funeral, or the home of the bereaved would be a revelation to the living. They would get to know how the-departed had lived, what s/he had done, and how s/he had come to depart. Information! The living may go on to reflect on these things, and reassess their values and ways of life. Some may even get the pedestrian sort of lessons, about keeping their BP in check, getting their cholesterol numbers to where they belong, and always crossing the street where the zebras would. Those who live in foreign may often get the news darn too late, and even when they have the news of the demise early enough, there could be other local issues that make an immediate visit difficult to impossible. So ... all those expressions of condolences are sent by electronic means; and this is certainly not conducive to either receiving the benefits of a real visit, or strong enough to get to the heart of the forin-living. And the forin-living misses out on the opportunities for checks & rebalances, and goes on with her life. ..lah..di...dah.