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4 Interesting Alternatives to Being Buried

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4 Interesting Alternatives to Being Buried

If you suffer from taphephobia, the fear of being buried alive, or fear being exhumed someday long after you are buried or just think ground burial or basic cremation are simply too boring of an end for your unique and wonderful life (or the life of a loved one, including a pet), then consider these four other options:

1. Funeral Diamonds

One of the key elements in cremated human remains happens to be carbon — and now that carbon can be magically transformed into an array of precious stones, including diamonds, by a company called LifeGem. So, your beloved significant other can then wear you post-humously around their neck or on their finger in a lovely gold, silver or platinum setting.

2. Star Dust

Celestis Inc., will rocket your ashes into the earth’s orbit or launch them into outer space. For a little under a $1000 your cremated remains can experience an Earth Rise service, or for $12,500 a portion of your remains can be launched into deep space. For the ultimate space journey, Celestis now offers the Sunjammer option:

The Sunjammer solar sail mission will carry your loved one on a monumental, truly historic mission into deep space — a mission that could last for millions of years. Space Services Holdings, Inc. – Celestis’ parent company – is part of a team of leading aerospace companies and government agencies – led by NASA – that is developing and launching Sunjammer, the world’s largest solar sail. Your loved one will be a pioneer in a new era of space exploration for all, journeying 3 million kilometers towards the sun, the farthest distance ever travelled by humankind. This incredible mission will ensure those on board their rightful place in history.

My concern with any of these rocket ship options (other than the price tag!) is the potentially astronomical carbon footprint of the endeavor.  But, if a rocket is already being launched and your remains happen to be on board and then catapulted into space, it would be quite profound to know that someday you could drift among the stars in the quite solitude of the celestial heavens.



3. Become a Coral Reef

The company Eternal Reef will cast your ashes into a 100 percent natural cast reef mold which is then lowered into the ocean to help create new habitat for a plethora of colorful sea creatures. Some people choose to be buried together or with deceased pets and Eternal reef is happy to accommodate such requests.

Being transformed into a coral reef may be one of the most environmental friendly ways to manage human remains. Personally, I think this is a rather cool option.



4. Cryogenic Freezing

If you hope that someday modern science will transcend science fiction and be able to truly reanimate dead people (and not in zombie form), then cryogenic freezing is the option for you. By using liquid nitrogen, human remains are cryogenically frozen without damaging tissue. The Alcor Life Foundation, an organization that promotes cryonics explains that cryonics is a speculative life support technology that seeks to preserve human bodies in a state that will be viable and treatable by future medicine. This option is a gamble, but how amazing would it be to be reanimated one hundred years into the future?

Next page: Watch videos of Memorial Reefs, Memorial Space Launches and Cryonics


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Cherise Udell

Cherise Udell is a mom, clean air advocate, anthropologist and feline aficionado with the nomadic habit of taking spontaneous sojourns to unusual destinations. Before her adventures in motherhood, she was an intrepid Amazon jungle guide equipped with a pair of sturdy wellingtons and a 24-inch machete, as well as a volunteer at a rainforest animal rescue center.


+ add your own
2:30AM PDT on Sep 21, 2014

Options #1, #2 and #3 would appear to be the most natural recycling options for a human being, #4 being the most egocentric option.

9:36PM PDT on Sep 6, 2014

I would prefer #1 or #4. Being a diamond in a ring or necklace that my daughter could wear and keep me with her always rather than have ashes in an urn seems to make more sense.
#4 Cryogenic Freezing appeals to me the most. However I think it would be outrageously expensive with no guarantee that it works. I wish it could.
How would someone from our pioneer days feel about coming alive again in a world they know nothing about? They would be totally lost and who knows what would happen to their minds. They might commit suicide to escape the unknown world they were brought into. Think about a person who lived in this world when they farmed, raised cattle and had gunfights. Then suddenly they were brought into a world of computers, airplanes, cars, microwaves, TV's and more.
Could they handle it or would they wish they were dead again? Many might be happy to just be alive and learn to cope with all the new technology, but others might lose their minds.
I'd be willing to try this alternative if I could afford it I wish there was a way to donate your body for this to see if it works. .

6:55PM PDT on Aug 11, 2014

Wow! Especially the coral reef.... I gotta rethink my plans for myself...

12:39PM PDT on Jul 7, 2014

I believe in the dust to dust, ashes to ashes stream of life. Once I'm gone, cremate me and let me fertilize the groves I loved to walk in life. Seems only fair to give back to what has given me so much.

2:23PM PDT on Jun 30, 2014

I like this one Become a Coral Reef but I have also thought about donating my body for science the crime one. Now I will have to think about it.

4:29PM PDT on Jun 23, 2014

I'm interested in and curious about #1 and 3. 2 is depressing--more space clutter--just what we need; and I wonder if the use of resources for the cryogenic option will be justified by the result. (Not saying it can't be, just wondering out loud...)

5:00PM PDT on Jun 4, 2014

Thanks for sharing

12:23PM PDT on May 26, 2014

Donating body to science, natural burial in the woods or coral reef are 3 things that i would consider .

3:26AM PDT on May 16, 2014

The 1st 3 ideas are wondrous. It is always great to learn new concepts. However, it is a tad controlling and denying to plan too much out. Even with a will or prepayment there are no guarantees what wishes will be honored after you have passed. All the more important to be fully present and carefully involved today -- BE Here now.

11:39AM PDT on May 4, 2014

The coral option is interesting!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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