We often over plan our entire lives. It’s not uncommon to also plan for funerals or how we want memories of our loved ones to continue. Forget about cremation or even donating your body to science. These days, for families that want to forgo the usual rites, there are plenty alternatives to traditional funerals. Some traditions won’t go away quite so soon, but new options are cropping up all the same.
Alternatives to Traditional Funerals
Funerary urns are nothing new. They date as far back as 7000 BC. But imagine being able to carry your loved one’s ashes around your neck or dangling from your ears. Companies like Spirit Pieces, make that a possibility. The company manufactures glass jewelry pendants and earrings that can contain the remains from pets and people. Other unique products to house your departed’s ashes, are: paperweights, memorial flames, garden orbs, necklaces, glass eggs and hummingbirds, touch stones, cat eyes, glass flowers and vases, ceramic urns etc. Every item is handmade and the artists treat each memorial as a work of art.
For those seeking a more environmentally friendly end-of-life ritual, Bios Urn has created the world’s first biodegradable urn. It is designed to convert you into a tree after your death. Billed by the company as “a catalyst for a life,” these urns are built with a special capsule. These capsules meet the needs of any type of plant. They provide the perfect medium to allow for the growth of a tree when planted with the remains of a loved one. The urns are made using a custom moulding system produced without the use of glues or chemical additives. As more and more people decide to go green, could this be the next wave of products that people go for?
Ashes Fireworks Displays
Heavenly Stars offers a variety of services for scattering the ashes of your loved one by incorporating their cremation ash into fireworks. Talk about going out in style. The company helps arrange all aspects of your special firework tribute. They’re now known for their range of spectacular self-fire fireworks and stringent safety standards.
MesoLoft and Celestis provide the ultimate memorial experience: a chance to launch your loved one into space. If you’ve ever imagined yourself venturing out into the stars, look no further. These companies promise to send a symbolic portion of your cremated remains or DNA to the very edge of space. MesoLoft’s team of aerospace engineers send up your ashes in a custom balloon along with two high-definition video recorders to film the launch from start to finish. Once the remains reach 80,000 feet, they are released to be scattered and will take months to hit the ground.
Celestis goes one step further with voyages into space, complete with four different tiers of service. Their most affordable option lifts you just above the Earth’s atmosphere, or you can choose to orbit our planet for a few grand more. At their next level, you can join the ranks of Neil Armstrong and be placed on the surface of the moon. And for a true voyage into the great beyond, you can choose to be carried out into deep interstellar space. At $12,500 to start, these prices may be out of reach for most people, but it’s nice to know that your dreams of becoming an astronaut are a possibility even after death.
Photo courtesy of MesoLoft.
What Matters Most
These alternatives to traditional funeral rites may make it appear that everyone is shooting for the stars (in more ways than one). But perhaps, the real message is that as we evolve, we’re beginning to bring personalization to all phases of life and after.
It’s also true that while the actual methods of funerals may change, #whatmattersmost to people is how we honor our loved ones in our hearts. Having a community around us during a difficult time makes it special, no matter what sort of a service we choose. Love and support from the community is truly the only constant- in life and afterwards too.
How do you feel about these after-life options?
Everdays has been designed to help family members contact the community about a loved one’s passing. It’s a simple space to share details on events, funeral arrangements, send personal condolences and connect with those who matter.