Funeral Home Traditions from Around the World
June 22, 2020
While there are some interesting and special funeral traditions and funeral homes in Greenville, MI, it’s always a good idea to learn about funerals and traditions from other places in the world as well.
Here are some interesting funeral home and death traditions from around the world:
- South Korean Departed Beads – South Koreans have started using loved one’s cremated ashes to make colorful beads that they then display in decorative dishes or glass containers. Though the beads can range in color, they are most commonly pink, blue, or black. This practice has become more popular in recent years as cemeteries are filling, and South Koreans need new ways to honor the dead.
- Tibetan Sky Burials – The ground in Tibet is much too rocky for burial, so instead Tibetans layout their deceased as offerings to the local giant griffon vultures. Though this sounds grotesque, it is a normal part of life for Tibetans and is the main part of their Buddhist beliefs as it is said that this practice makes it easier for the dead to move onto their next life.
- Italian Capsula Mundi – The Capsula Mundi is an eco-friendly burial container that uses cremains to fertilize and seed a new tree. The Latin name refers to a proverb that states, “transformations of our body between the mineral, vegetal and animal worlds: the three key elements of life on Earth.” Italians are embracing this new tradition as a way to remind everyone that death is not forever, as death will breed new life in the form of a tree.
- Ga Fantasy Coffins – In Ghana, most people believe that life continues after death, and therefore funerals should be celebratory. To embody this idea, the Ga people make fantasy coffins in unusual shapes and colors. Each coffin is one of a kind, and usually represents the deceased’s life or career in some way.
- Coastal American Eternal Reefs – In coastal regions of the US, families are honoring the deceased in a way that also helps the environment: Eternal Reefs. This process uses cremains to make a base for new coral reefs, thereby preserving the marine environment for future generations and honoring the deceased. Families are often encouraged to personalize the reefs by adding handprints, plaques or other memorials.
- Japanese Ruriden Columbarium – Tokyo is one of the densest urban areas in the world, making it hard for the Japanese to find places to bury their dead. The colorful and high-tech Ruriden Columbarium is a solution to this problem. It features thousands of crystal Buddhas, each representing a recently deceased. The ashes are interred in the columbarium for 33 years before being moved to a communal burial site beneath the temple, allowing people to grieve in the traditional way before making space for others to do the same.
The more we know about other people and other cultures, the more we understand that we are all humans looking for love and connection. Want to learn more about funeral homes in Greenville, MI? Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care is here for you in your time of loss.