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
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 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.
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