Since my first exposure to the concept of ethical wills last year they have been on my mind. Recently I decided to conduct a little research on the history of ethical wills to find out when they first developed and what their primary purpose was. To my surprise I learned that ethical wills have a history that is nearly seven centuries long.
Some of the first ethical wills documented were from the Middle Ages. There are examples of ethical wills written during the 14th century in France and Germany. One of the French ethical wills was written as a guide to good living dictated from a father to a son. The concern, love and wisdom that this document presented made me feel like there is no other way to prepare to leave this world then to prepare an ethical will.
From the examples that I found in historical texts, I have begun to write my own ethical will. I have divided my ethical will into several section. The first section addresses my overall impressions of life, humanity and my hopes for the future. The next section is dedicated to my son. I leave behind my advice for being happy, for finding love and for understanding the world and its mysteries. The third section of my ethical will is dedicated to the rest of my loved ones. It consists of memories and thanks for the relationships that made my life so rich. The final section of my ethical will is dedicated to fulfilling the probate requirements for my state.
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