Archive for January, 2010|Monthly archive page

“Why I Don’t Believe In Visiting Graves and Why I Do It Anyway”

In Cemeteries on January 31, 2010 at 2:01 pm

This piece is important: the author asks many questions and raises many issues that people have about visiting graves. Please, be sure to read it.

” I never understood the draw of visiting the cemeteries where people you knew are buried. For years, before I ever lost anyone I really loved, I had the opinion that it was silly to visit a place where someone’s used up, decaying shell lay under the ground. Because I believe that our souls are eternal and they leave the body behind to go somewhere else when they die, I just thought it was one of those old-school, movie scene traditions that I would rarely, if ever, participate in. Another aspect of the grave-visiting issue is that, even 5 years after the fact, seldom does a single day pass without some triggered memory of my dad floating through my mind. Whether it is replaying the day he died, or just some little memory that involved my Dad in some way, I have never forgotten that he is gone, and, therefore, don’t feel like I need to visit his gravesite to remember him. But, I do it anyway. I still don’t know why, exactly, but I’ll drive the hour there, spend a bit of time hanging out, and then drive another hour back to Columbus. I don’t go expecting that I’ll have some experience that assures me of anything, or that makes me feel closer to him. I just go. And I take flowers so people will see that he was loved.”


Cremation and Bio-cremation

In Cemeteries on January 2, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Cremation and Bio-cremation

Cremation in Bali

In the US, 600,000 are cremated each year, and its practice growing in popularity: Washington and Nevada have the highest cremation rates at 59% each, California’s rate is 42% (97,000); Louisiana and West Virginia are at @ 7% each.

Remains (cremains) can be buried, scattered on land, in air, at sea, or placed in urns and columbaria.

15% of the bodies cremated each year go unclaimed: that’s 90,000 cremains unclaimed or awaiting burial or scattering each year in the US.

Though cremation is sometimes flogged for its high energy use and pollutants, it also allows for the compact use of burial ground.

Cremation Garden at West Haven Memorial Park in Cincinnati

Jews are prohibited from cremation and Muslims abhor cremation. Cremation has been approved in most Catholic dioceses since the early 1960s (the old prohibition was based on the 18th-century custom of Masons choosing cremation as a way of rejecting the Catholic church’s teaching).

Resomation, also known as bio-cremation, uses “less than a tenth of the amount of natural gas and a third of the electricity,” by means of a chemical process involving alkaline hydrolysis.

The body is submerged in water in a stainless steel chamber. Heat, pressure and potassium hydroxide, chemicals used to make soap and bleach, are added to dissolve the tissue.

Again, the remains remain and must be be buried, scattered or interred.

Cremation Urn

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