Most religious and spiritual groups believe that the body is occupied by a soul that lives on after death. For centuries humans have been using different methods to ensure that a body remains at peace, after the soul has departed. With the changes in the world, due to more advanced technology, the way we put our loved ones to rest is also changing and new methods of preserving our memory include:
- Becoming a Diamond
Cremated bodies can be made into synthetic diamonds, in a process which heats extracted carbons from a loved one’s remains to extreme temperatures. These are then placed into LifeGem’s diamond press, a 13,000-pound industrial machine. Once the diamond has been made it can be cut and polished, as well as have unique features engraved on its surface.
- Floating Island Burial
The Buddhist traditions observed in Hong Kong require proper respect to be shown to the bodies of those that have passed on. The country has been running out of space to store their ever-increasing number of dead. Burial plots in Hong Kong are now being reused and families often wait up to 56 months to get one. This means that most of the bodies of those that die are cremated and the country has also begun running out of space to store the urns.
To solve this problem Hong Kong has teamed up with British architectural firm, BREAD Studio, to create a floating island where the ashes of 370,000 people can now be housed. The island is called ‘Floating Eternity’ and is located alongside the harbor. Visitors can pull up by boat, place their urn in a designated niche or sprinkle the ashes overboard for a burial at sea. The circular walkway has also been designed to ensure that the view from any angle remains unobstructed.
- Coral Reef Burial
Eternal Reefs has revolutionized a way for deceased loved ones to become a part of the ocean’s ecosystem. Cremated remains are put inside reef balls, which are specially designed to repopulate the oceans reefs after their drastic decline in recent decades. The unique design encourages sea life to attach itself to the surface of the balls and grow outward. The reef ball can also store personal memorabilia, such as dog tags for navy veterans.
- An Atmospheric Release
Mesoloft is a company that takes cremated remains up in a balloon and releases them into the atmosphere, where they float around the Earth before drifting back to the planet’s surface to settle on various landforms. Other ashes will pass through clouds to become a part of rain or snow. The release is recorded and played for loved ones at the deceased’s funeral, or a special memorial service.