Photo: dave.kuehn / flickr / CC-BY-NC 2.0

12 New-Age Ways To Be Buried

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Vote up the ways you want to go.

Not everyone considers the types of burial available to them when they pass, much less the actual moment they kick the bucket. However, in this new "green era," people want to look outside the box - or casket, so to speak - for new and unique ways to be buried. These new-age types of burial methods, while potentially blasphemous to your ancestors, actually save you a lot of green, both the plant kind and the money kind. When a person passes, they can be buried beneath a tree or have their ashes pressed into vinyl. Some more ancient methods are even coming back in the modern era. Mummification is in, while home burials offer a more intimate and cost-effective way to inter your loved ones.

Depending on your interests or beliefs, you can likely find a unique way to be buried that suits your own personal needs. Tombstones and mausoleums had their moment - it's time for space burials and cryonics.

Photo: dave.kuehn / flickr / CC-BY-NC 2.0

  • 1
    543 VOTES

    Natural Burial

    Natural Burial
    Photo: Des Colhoun / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.0

    Natural burials emerged as part of the growing "green movement" in the funerary industry. True to its name, natural burial takes the process of interring back to the basics. Instead of being embalmed, bodies are simply placed into the ground encased in nothing more than a biodegradable shroud or casket. This allows the bodies to decompose naturally, instead of adding embalming fluid, concrete, steel, and treated wood to the soil.

    Many natural cemeteries take things even further, creating gardens filled with natural greenery and small stones over the graves instead of a sea of headstones. In addition to being more environmentally conscious, natural burials also eliminate the high costs that come with either cremation or embalming.

    543 votes
  • 2
    501 VOTES

    Capsula Mundi

    Capsula Mundi
    Video: YouTube

    Created by Italian designers Anna Citelli and Raoul Bretzel, "Capsula Mundi" involves burying remains in what look like giant seed pods. The first version of the pod will hold a person's ashes in a starch-based and completely biodegradable capsule. Phase two of the project will fit actual bodies, in the fetal position, into the pods.

    Basically, you slip the ashes or corpse inside of the environmentally-friendly capsule. Before the person passes, they select the type of tree they want to grow into, which is then planted above them. Their body then feeds the tree as it decomposes. Through this process, the minds behind Capsula Mundi hope to turn "cold, grey" cemeteries into beautiful woodlands.

    501 votes
  • 3
    435 VOTES

    Eternal Reefs

    Becoming part of a coral reef emerged as one of the newer "green burial" options, one which definitely appeals to nature lovers. Eternal Reefs takes a person's cremains and mixes them into environmentally-friendly concrete, creating large spheres that eventually get lowered into the ocean.

    Placed into areas where the reefs need help rebuilding and healing, the spheres become new homes for both fish and coral. Today, over 1,800 eternal reefs rest off the coastal United States.

    435 votes
  • 4
    361 VOTES


    Video: YouTube

    Resomation uses hot water mixed with potassium hydroxide to completely liquefy body tissues. After about three to four hours, only bones remain, which are then crushed into a powder similar to ashes after cremation. Since the process uses far less heat and energy than traditional cremation, resomation emerged as a popular option for people looking for a more eco-friendly burial.

    Basically, you get all the benefits of cremation without the extra carbon dioxide or mercury from tooth fillings.

    361 votes
  • 5
    399 VOTES

    Home Funerals

    People who hold home services and burials are actually doing exactly what many of our ancestors used to do, just with a modern spin. Instead of using embalming fluid, you preserve the body using dry ice. The bodies are buried on the family's property (or sometimes in a natural cemetery), and it's the family, not a mortuary home, who does all of the preparations for the body.

    Many see these services as a green alternative and as a means for families to become more connected to the burial process of their loved one.

    399 votes
  • 6
    362 VOTES

    Memorial Objects Made From Ashes

    Memorial Objects Made From Ashes
    Photo: SteenJepsen / Pixabay / Public Domain

    Some people want more than a traditional urn and ashes for their loved ones. Thanks to modern technology, being preserved as memorial objects offers a sentimental way to be commemorated. A huge range of options exists for an interested buyer, including being made into a diamond in a lab.

    You can even mix ashes with tattoo ink to create a truly unique piece of body art.

    362 votes