Inviting the Gods- Laos (2007)
Before the ceremony begins in Laos and Thailand the gods are invited. (ca.32 secs, layman’s chant recorded in Laos, Luang Prabang, September 2007.

Sagge kāme ca rūpe giri-sikhara-taṭe c’ antalikkhe vimāne,
dīpe raṭṭhe ca gāme taru-vana-gahane geha-vatthumhi khette;
bhummā c’ āyantu devā jala-thala-visame yakkha-gandhabba-nāgā.
Tiṭṭhantā santike yaṃ muni-vara-vacanaṃ sādhavo me suṇantu.
Dhamma-ssavana-kālo ayam bhadanta (x 3).

In the heavens, in the sense realm and in the realm of subtle form, on mountain peaks and precipices, in mansions in the sky, in islands, countries and towns, groves of trees and thickets, homesteads and fields. Let those earth devas on water on land and uneven land, those demons, heavenly musicians and serpents, may they approach and stand nearby and listen well to the speech of the best of the sages [chanted] by me. This is the time for hearing the Dhamma, Venerable Sirs (3X).

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Inviting the Spirits of the Departed- Sri Lanka (1998)
In Sri Lanka the spirit of the departed is on certain occasions invited to listen to a sermon. (ca. 45 secs, layman’s invitation is in colloquial Sinhala. Recorded in Sri Lanka, 1998)

ammē! ammē! ammē! ammā dän api atarin ven velā davas hatak giya adaveni davase, mē ammagē dū daruvō, api nǟ ñātivaru okkoma ävilla ada rātriyaṭa baṇak kiyōnava. ē baṇa ahanna ammat ävilla, baṇa ahala heṭa sāṃgīka dānayak denavā. ē sāṃgika dānen läbena piṃ okkoma amma anumodaṃ velā, inna tänin hoňda nirvāṇa sampattiya läbenḍa kiyala hiṭan api prārthanā karanava mē api siyaḷuma daruvot mē nǟdǟ pirisa. ävilla hiṭan baṇa ahanḍa enḍa kō, ǟ.

Mother! Now it is seven days since you left us on a day like today. We, all the children and relations of yours, have gathered here and make [the monk] preach tonight. Mother, you too must come and listen to the sermon. We will give alms to the great saṃgha tomorrow. We, all children and the assembly of relations, do the [earnest] wish that you may obtain all the merit resulting from that almsgiving, and obtain the good happiness of Nirvāna from where you are [now]. Please, come and listen to the sermon!

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The Triple Gem- Laos (2007)
At the start a layperson, joined by others, honours the Triple Gem (ca. 30secs, recorded in Laos, Luang Prabang, 2007)

Arahan sammāsambuddho bhagavā Buddham bhagavantam abhivādemi
Svākhāto bhagavatā dhammo Dhammam namassāmi Supatipanno bhagavato sāvaka-sangho Sangham namāmi.

He is the Holy One, the Exalted one, the Blessed One. I salute the Buddha,the Blessed One. The Dhamma of the Blessed One is perfectly expounded. I will greet the Dhamma. The renouncer Sangha of the Blessed One has entered on the good way, I salute the Sangha.

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Requesting the Refuges and Precepts- UK (1999)
It is customary (but not obligatory) for a layman to formally requests the refuges and precepts from the monks—(ca. 40 secs, recorded in Bristol, Canford Crematorium, March 1999)

Mayaṃ Bhante visuṃ visuṃ rakkhanatthāya ti-saraṇena saha pañca sīlāni yācāma. Dutiyaṃ pi mayaṃ Bhante … Tatiyaṃ pi mayaṃ Bhante …Anuggahaṃ katvā sīlaṃ detha no Bhante

Venerable Sir, for [our] protection we individually request the Five Precepts along with the Three Refuges.For the second time, … For the third time, …Out of kindness grant us the precepts.

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Refuges and Precepts- Sri Lanka (1998)
The ceremony proper starts with taking refuges and precepts—Transl. Mirror of the Dhamma, BPS, Wheel 54 (ca. 2 mins 30 secs, recorded in Sri Lanka, T. September 1998)

Buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi
Dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi
Saṃghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi
Dutiyam pi …
Tatiyam pi …

To the Buddha I go for Refuge.To the Dhamma I go for Refuge.To the Sangha I go for Refuge.For the second time, …For the third time, …

Pāṇātipātā veramaṇī sikkhāpadaṃ samādiyāmi.
Adinnādānā veramaṇī sikkhāpadaṃ samādiyāmi.
Kāmesu micchācārā veramaṇī sikkhāpadaṃ samādiyāmi.
Musāvādā veramaṇī sikkhāpadaṃ samādiyāmi.
Surāmerayamajjapamādaṭṭhānā veramaṇī sikkhāpadaṃ samādiyāmi.

I undertake the training-rule to abstain from killing living creatures… from taking what is not given.… from wrong conduct in sexual desires.… from false speech.… from intoxicants (such as those) distilled and fermented causing carelessness.

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Abhidhamma- UK (1999)
In Southeast Asia (but not Sri Lanka) it is also customary to chant passages from the Abhidhamma, a group of cryptic texts for specialists (no translation needed), but appears to have a ritual function in the ceremony (ca. 1 min 35secs together, recorded in Bristol, Canford Crematorium, March 1999)
(first passage is the beginning, three triplets, from the longer chant of the Dhammasaṭgaūī-māṃikā)

Kusalā dhammā, akusalā dhammā, avyākatā dhammā;
Sukhāya vedanāya sampayuttā dhammā, dukkhāya vedanāya sampayuttā dhammā, adukkha-m-asukhāya vedanāya sampayuttā dhammā;

Vipākā dhammā, vipāka-dhamma-dhammā, neva-vipāka-na-vipāka dhamma-dhammā;

(second passage is the Mahāpaṃṃhāna-māṃikā)
hetupaccayo, ārammaṇapaccayo, adhipatipaccayo, anantarapaccayo, samanantarapaccayo,sahajātapaccayo, aññamaññapaccayo, nissayapaccayo,upanissayapaccayo, purejātapaccayo, pacchājātapaccayo, āsevanapaccayo,kammapaccayo, vipākapaccayo, āhārapaccayo, indriyapaccayo, jhānapaccayo,maggapaccayo, sampayuttapaccayo, vippayuttapaccayo, atthipaccayo,natthipaccayo, vigatapaccayo, avigatapaccayo.

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Mahaparinibbana Sutta- Sri Lanka (1998) and Laos (2007)
The core of the Theravāda funeral rites is the offering of a white piece of cloth (as a reminder of the ascetic practice of wearing robes made of rags) and the chanting of a canonical verse uttered after the passing away of the Buddha (ca. 2 mins 16 secs together, in two different versions)
First, the core verse (recorded in Sri Lanka, M. November 1998)

aniccā vata saṃkhārā, uppādavayadhammino
uppajjitvā nirujjhanti tesaṃ vūpasamo sukho. (3X)

Impermanent are conditioned things; it is their nature to arise and fall;having arisen they cease; their complete stilling is happiness.

Second, the core verse followed by a non-canonical verse (recorded in Vientiane, Laos November 2007).

aniccā vata saṃkhārā, uppādavayadhammino
uppajjitvā nirujjhanti tesaṃ vūpasamo sukho. (3X)
Sabbe sattā maranti ca mariṃsu ca, marissare,
Tath’ ev’āhaṃ marissāmi, n’atthi me ettha saṃsayo.
Sādhu! Sādhu! Sādhu! Anumodāmi!

Impermanent ... (as above).In the present every being dies, they will die in future, always died,In the same way then I shall surely die. There is no doubt in me regarding this.

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Forgiveness for Bad Deeds- Laos (2007)
Next it is customary, but not obligatory, to ask forgiveness for any bad deeds committed (ca. 1min. chant recorded in Laos, Luang Prabang, 2007).

Kāyena vācāya va cetasāva
Buddhe kukammaṃ pakaṭaṃ mayā yaṃ
Buddho patiggaṇhātu accayantaṃ
Kālantare samavaritum va buddhe

Repeated with Dhamma … and Sangha.Through body, speech or mind. Whatever bad kamma I have done to the Buddha. May the Buddha accept my admission of it; that in future I may show restraint towards the Buddha … Dhamma …Sangha.

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Offering Merit- Sri Lanka (1998)
Merit has been generated by way of listening to the dhamma and donating robes to the monks. This merit is now offered to the dead and the act is symbolized by pouring water from a cup into a bowl. (ca. 36 chant recorded in Sri Lanka, Sept 1998).

idaṃ me ñātīnaṃ hotu! sukhitā hontu ñātayo!
May this be for my relatives! May my relatives be happy!

All monks chant:
Yathā vārivahā pūrā paripūrenti sāgaraṃ,
evaṃ eva ito dinnaṃ petānaṃ upakappati.
Unname udakaṃ vaṭṭaṃ yathā ninnaṃ pavattati,
evaṃ eva ito dinnaṃ petānaṃ upakappati.

Just as the rivers full of water fill the ocean full,even so does what is given here benefit the dead.   Just as water rained on high ground moves [down] to the low land,even so does what is given here benefit the dead.

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Wishes- Laos (2007)
The giving of merit is immediately followed verses that grant people that their wishes may come true. Then the other monks join the chief monk for two verses of blessing (ca. 45 secs chant recorded in Laos, Vientiane (Mpyre), November of 2007).

Icchitaṃ patthitam tuyhaṃ khippaṃ eva samijjhatu,
sabbe pūrentu [citta]saṃkappā cando paṇṇaraso yathā.
Maṇi jotiraso yathā.

May all whatever is desired and wanted quickly come to be. May all your wishes be fulfilled like the moon on the full-moon day.… like a radiant wish-fulfilling gem.

All monks join in:
Sabbītiyo vivajjantu sabbarogo vinassatu
Mā te bhavatv antarāyo sukhī dīghāyuko bhava.
Abhivādanasīlissa niccaṃ vaddhāpacāyino
cattāro dhammā vaḍḍhanti āyu vaṇṇo sukhaṃ balaṃ.

May all distresses be averted, may all diseases be destroyed.
May no dangers be for me, may I be happy living long.
For one who is habitually respectful and always honouring elders four things will increase: lifespan, beauty, happiness and strength.

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Protective Suttas- Laos (2008)
At the end of the ceremony, verses from protective Suttas are chanted in Laos and Thailand—Transl. Mirror of the Dhamma, BPS, Wheel 54 (ca. 30secs, recorded in Laos, Vientiane, 2008)

Mettañ ca sabbalokasmiṃ mānasam bhāvaye aparimāṇaṃ
Uddhaṃ adho ca tiriyañ ca asambādhaṃ averaṃ asapattaṃ
Tiṭṭhaṃ caraṃ nisinno vā sayāno vā yāvat ‘assa vigatamiddho
Etaṃ satiṃ adhiṭṭheyya brahmam etaṃ viharaṃ idhamāhu.
Diṭṭhiñ ca anupagamma sīlavā dassanena sampanno
Kāmesu vineyya gedhaṃ na hi jātu gabbhaseyyaṃ punaretīti

Let his heart of boundless love pervade the whole world: above, below and across—with no obstruction, no hatred, and no enmity.
Whether he stands, walks, sits or lies down, as long as he is awake, he should develop this mindfulness. This, they say, is Divine Abiding here. Not falling into views, virtuous and endowed with Insight, he gives up attachment to sense-desires. Truly, he does not come again for conception in a womb.

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Blessing Verses- Sri Lanka (1998)
Another popular triplet of blessing verses which is often chanted at the end of ceremonies comes from the Mahājayamaṭgala Sutta —Transl. Mirror ofthe Dhamma, BPS, Wheel 54 (ca. 23 secs, recorded in Sri Lanka on the occasion of an alms giving, T. Sept. 1998)

Bhavatu sabbama-galaṃ—rakkhantu sabbadevatā
sabbabuddhānubhāvena—sadā sotthi bhavantu te [instead of me].
Bhavatu sabbama-galaṃ—rakkhantu sabbadevatā
sabbadhammānubhāvena—sadā sotthi bhavantu te.
Bhavatu sabbama-galaṃ—rakkhantu sabbadevatā
sabbasaṃghānubhāvena—sadā sotthi bhavantu te.

May all blessings accrue. May all devas protect. By the glory of all the Buddhas may security ever be yours [instead of “mine”]
.… By the glory of all Truth’s Laws …
… By the glory of all Saintly Disciples …

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