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Articles and links

A South African writes on ecofunerals and their importance.

South Africa – the right to die with dignity.

Alternatives to coffins: a shroud is an environmentally friendly way to bury someone.

An interview with Lucienne in the UCT magazine.

At Death Cafes people drink tea, eat cake and discuss death. Our aim is to increase awareness of death to help people make the most of their (finite) lives.

Experimental burial tunnels in Jerusalem.

The growth of eco burials in the UK.

Be a tree – the natural burial guide to turning yourself into a forest (USA)

Final Fling is for people who like to be in control of life and death decisions. Know your options. Make choices. Leave instructions. Stay in charge. Right till the end. And meantime, live life to the full. (UK)

Forest cemeteries in Japan.

11 fascinating funeral traditions on the TED blog.

Burying dead bodies takes a surprising toll on the environment. An article on Tech Insider, which adds the toll up – embalming, cost, toxic chemicals, materials used, waste of space, and suggests some eco-friendly alternatives.


When Death Comes

Mary Oliver

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
to buy me, and snaps his purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox;
when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering;
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened
or full of argument.
I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

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