As a single person do you ever think about what will happen to you after you’re gone? To your body, that is.
I have no significant other or children and it’s quite possible, if not very likely, that I’ll never have either, thus I’ll have less of a tie to any particular location for burial. So maybe (many, many decades from now) I’ll be laid to rest near other family members in the local cemetery back home, if there is still room by then, and if there are any younger extended family around who care to help arrange it.
But then again, maybe the standard burial plot isn’t for me. What might it be like to have a different experience? Over the past several months, I randomly came across three very interesting types of memorial services and thought it would be cool to bring them together in a post. With Halloween here, now seems like a good time.
ONE. Space Memorial
I LOVE futuristic architecture, landscapes, and sci-fi. I’m (not so) secretly jealous that I wasn’t born in a future time when space travel and space colonies are the norm and technological advancement has ushered in a new utopia, where people can live to 200 years old or indefinitely. I know it’s fantasy, but I can dream. I won’t ever get to space in life, but maybe I could after life.
At least a few organizations, including Elysium Space, have been working to make this a possibility now. Their service sends your ashes into outer space, which orbit the Earth and later re-enter the atmosphere as a falling star.
There likely will be even more opportunities in the future as the space flight industry develops. By the time I’m old, there may be dozens of options for me to send my ashes into orbit, or to the Moon, Mars, or even into never-ending deep space. Who knows? I guess the sky isn’t the limit.
When I Leave this Earth: Space Burial (Slate.com)
Send Ashes into Orbit on Elon Musks SpaceX Rocket (MarketWatch)
TWO. Land Memorial
We all return to the earth when we pass away. The earth receives nutrients from our bodies in death, the same way we receive nutrients from the earth in life. It’s the circle of life, right?
Eco Solutions’ organic burial pods turn your remains into nutrient for a single tree. What about being part of something that replaces coffins and somber, scary cemeteries, with living, breathing green parks and sacred forests that celebrate life? In such envisioned walk-able green spaces, each tree would represent, literally, a person, who in some essence lives on through the tree they give life to.
Bye Bye Coffins (Earthporm.com)
Eco Solutions – Capsula Mundi (CNN.com)
THREE. Sea Memorial
Your final resting place could be the infinite blue depths of our planet’s vast oceans and seas. The UCLA School of Medicine houses a program that has improved a process, called alkaline hydrolysis (also known as resomation, among other names), which turns human bodies into pure white bone.
These bones are pulverized and scattered over bodies of water, where it disperses and purportedly does not harm the environment, unlike standard burials and to a lesser extent, cremation. There are some funeral homes and other organizations around the United States, that offer this as a service.
In the future your dead body won’t be buried. It will dissolve (Wired.co.uk)
In the future your dead body will be dissolved (FastCompany.com)
What do you think? Would you consider an alternative memorial for your end of life?
Happy Halloween! May your day be all treats and no tricks.
“Debtor’s prison is real, and opportunity cost is a bitch.” (DDSW Archives)
Fight against a frightening 2019… VOTE on November 6th! (Ballotpedia)
Your debt is getting so small!
Thanks. It’s getting there, but somehow never seems small enough. 🙂
Land memorial would be great if the land I am placed at looks like the picture. But knowing me, I would end up in the complete opposite of land utopia. So awesome how far you have come in paying down that debt!
Lol. I guess by that point, you’d never know. So it could work out either way.
100% tree-feeding. I wouldn’t mind a little memorial stone or something with my name on it but I have no interest in a coffin, embalming, etc etc.
It seems that the land memorial is popular. It does appear to have quite a low environmental impact.
Yay, your debt is shrinking!!! 😀 So awesome! Great post! I loved the idea of a land memorial. I’m up in the PNW so I would love for my remains to be a part of a lovely forest as in the picture. Very fitting 🙂 Keep up the inspirational work!
Thank you! So far everyone has voted for the land memorial.
If I am buried I’d go with the land memorial, but I’d like a bunch of daisies planted over me, like a prairie. Guess that would truly be pushing up daisies😉
When I saw your new debt amount my first thought was, “Wow, down to the cost of the average new car.”
The land memorial streak continues.
Thanks. I can’t believe that people spend this much on a car. If that’s average, I don’t want to know what a luxury car costs!
I love the land memorial option too!
Another option I would consider would be being placed somewhere in the wilderness where jackals or whatever could nourish themselves on my dead body. I’d be honoured to be feeding some other deserving creature once I’m already dead. At the same time, I don’t particularly like the idea of all kinds of bugs eating me, eeek! I would still consider it though, but I don’t think it’s legal where I live, maybe not anywhere, haha. But the land memorial is in the same circle of life genre, and seems to have nicer and prettier process too. 🙂 I hope something like that will become available where I live.
Congrats on getting your student loan down to 37,300!
I’ve thought a similar thing. Feed me to a polar bear.
DDSW, I’ve been reading along. You’ve been doing a great job, and the hard way too – renting a room, using public transit, living minimally. Keep your eye on the prize, it’s so close.
Thank you! I hope you don’t run into a polar bear ahead of schedule. It might not end well. 😦 🙂
“somewhere in the wilderness where jackals or whatever could nourish themselves on my dead body”… Ummm. That’s a vivid image I’m not sure I can handle about the fate of my body after death. lol. Yeah, I’m not crazy about bugs either. I do like the idea of directly feeding the living roots of a tree. I’m torn between the land memorial and the space memorial.
Wow your debt is getting lower and lower. Great work!
And I read the site about the earth pods. I like the idea of being a tree but I don’t think I would like once someone decided they wanted to make me into a table or something.
Lol. Why not? You could be the family dining table handed down from generation to generation. LOL
I don’t think these parks and forests are ever meant to be cut down, so you probably wouldn’t have to worry about that, unless we ended up in World War 3 and needed to use all available resources to keep people warm during the nuclear winter.
I like the land memorial the best, but will probably just have a more traditional funeral. Then again, sometimes people’s funeral wishes aren’t always followed by family members when they pass. Thankfully I won’t have to think about that for awhile. 🙂