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  • FIRST POST
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 28th Sep 16, 5:03 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    Natural Burial
    • #1
    • 28th Sep 16, 5:03 AM
    Natural Burial 28th Sep 16 at 5:03 AM
    Hope this isn't too morbid for people, if so, just skip it.

    My husband and I want natural burials. There is a new natural burial site on the outskirts of our city. I have details and costs and we looked at it the other day.

    In a couple of weeks we are meeting the manager to choose our plots and fill in the paperwork.

    We are paying for an oak tree to be planted on the plot once we are interred.

    All we have to do now is organise a funeral director who can cater for a natural burial (no embalming and cardboard coffin or shroud). We will pay for that in advance too.

    We will tell our son what we have planned and leave the details with our wills.

    I will update when there is more to say.

    Hope this is of interest to someone.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_burial
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
Page 4
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 30th Sep 16, 12:34 PM
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    lessonlearned
    Putting in writing is by far and away the best thing to do. Unfortunately mum had suffered a series of strokes so couldn't do that.

    I guess it just goes to show tbat we do actually need to plan ahead and actually get it all down in writing. It could save a lot of confusion.
    • BarryBlue
    • By BarryBlue 30th Sep 16, 4:32 PM
    • 2,640 Posts
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    BarryBlue
    We went to a humanist funeral recently and it is something we both want for ourselves. It was perfect for a couple of non believers like us.
    Originally posted by Loanranger
    Couldn't agree more. The celebrants actually put some work into it and make it an occasion to remember. That was the feedback we got from the many people that attended my FIL's funeral.

    I have long thought it to be utter hypocrisy to have a religious content when you have no religion. But it seems to happen by default. You need to take control and insist on a Humanist funeral if it is appropriate to you. Otherwise you end up with some 'house vicar' who just goes through the motions.

    There is absolutely no reason to have anything at a funeral that you don't want. We had no hymns or prayers, just suitable music and memories, plus a well-researched tribute. As the celebrant said, he didn't have to share his funeral with anyone else.
    We're gonna be alright, dancin' on a Saturday night
    • mumps
    • By mumps 30th Sep 16, 6:14 PM
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    mumps
    When a friend of my husband's died they couldn't locate a humanist to conduct the service so my husband did it. He was approached by the undertaker afterwards and asked if he was interested in doing it again as they had trouble finding people to conduct non religious ceremonies. My husband wasn't able to do it, work pressures, but was flattered to be asked.
    Sell £1500

    2831.00/£1500
    • Gers
    • By Gers 1st Oct 16, 7:06 AM
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    Gers
    This is a fascinating discussion which I've just stumbled upon.

    My father requested a cardboard coffin and a non-religious ceremony which I stuck too. Mind you, his first request was for a black bin liner and a tree on his head, something not achievable twenty years ago.

    An important legal principle is that the disposal of human remains is entirely down to a decision of the next of kin. There is no legal right for the deceased to have their expressed wishes complied with. You can say 'I want ...' however if your next of kin disagrees then it won't happen.

    However, I hope it's not often that that happens as respecting the wishes of a loved one is a moral decision.

    My struggle in doing as my beloved father wanted was with the wider family who were mostly aghast at the truly dreadful coffin (as was I). Fortunately my uncle was on hand to explain, very firmly, that all was being done as directed. My father made sure his brother knew of his wishes.

    My fathers ashes were scattered in a small wood near where we grew up, they were joined by my brothers ashes and soon a portion of one of his sons will join them. No memorial stones, just memories in the hearts of family.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 1st Oct 16, 8:10 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    Just to say a woodland burial does not negate a religious ceremony, if that is your wish. Several people on here have equated it with a humanist/other non-religious ceremony. You can have whatever ceremony you like.

    Some friends of mine, giants in the faith, were killed together in a car crash a couple of years ago. They were Baptist ministers/missionaries and had a full church funeral, with overflow TV link to the church hall, and also people outside. Hundreds of people. Then they had a simple woodland burial.

    I wasn't able to attend unfortunately, but they certainly had a good send-off!

    http://www.baptist-heartofengland.org/index.php/prayer/422-john-a-audrey-bedford
    Last edited by seven-day-weekend; 01-10-2016 at 12:08 PM.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 1st Oct 16, 10:30 AM
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    lessonlearned
    That is the beauty of it these days.

    In days of yore there were no real alternatives, it was a church service, then a burial in consecrated ground if you were eligible, unhallowed ground beyond the church walls if you were not.

    When King John was excommunicated for defying the Pope the bodies began to pile up because there was no other mechanism in place.

    Now you can have the service of your choice or not, and you can be buried or cremated.

    As for ashes......that's a whole new ball game. I googled ..Ideas for what to do with ashes and there are loads of choices - from the thoughtful, to the whacky to the downright bizarre.

    Whilst I understand the legality as to the next of kin being responsible for the "disposal of the deceased's remains" I do think there is a moral dimension at work too.

    If the deceased has made their wishes known then I think we are morally obligated to try and fulfil those wishes.

    If we loved the deceased then why would we not want to do that one last service for them, especially if it means so much to them. I see it as a final act of love, cherishing their memory.
    • ThemeOne
    • By ThemeOne 1st Oct 16, 11:58 AM
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    ThemeOne
    There is a lot more choice in how to have a funeral and burial these days. The problem is a funeral has to be arranged within a certain timescale usually, and often by those in a state of shock or grief, so it can be an awkward time to get to grips with all the alternatives, especially if not much thought has been given to it beforehand.

    When my father died earlier this year he left no instructions, and we'd not discussed anything. He wasn't religious, though had been brought up in the church, so I gave him a religious crematorium funeral followed by a non-religious burial.

    It seemed a decent compromise, which hopefully he would have been OK with. I think he'd have simply been appalled at the cost!
    • missbiggles1
    • By missbiggles1 1st Oct 16, 12:14 PM
    • 15,695 Posts
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    missbiggles1
    There is a lot more choice in how to have a funeral and burial these days. The problem is a funeral has to be arranged within a certain timescale usually, and often by those in a state of shock or grief, so it can be an awkward time to get to grips with all the alternatives, especially if not much thought has been given to it beforehand.

    When my father died earlier this year he left no instructions, and we'd not discussed anything. He wasn't religious, though had been brought up in the church, so I gave him a religious crematorium funeral followed by a non-religious burial.

    It seemed a decent compromise, which hopefully he would have been OK with. I think he'd have simply been appalled at the cost!
    Originally posted by ThemeOne
    Sorry, I hope you don't think I'm being tactless, but how did you manage to have both a cremation and a burial?
    • ThemeOne
    • By ThemeOne 1st Oct 16, 12:29 PM
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    • 536 Thanks
    ThemeOne
    Sorry, I hope you don't think I'm being tactless, but how did you manage to have both a cremation and a burial?
    Originally posted by missbiggles1
    Burial of the ashes.
    • missbiggles1
    • By missbiggles1 1st Oct 16, 12:33 PM
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    missbiggles1
    Burial of the ashes.
    Originally posted by ThemeOne
    Oh, right thanks. I hadn't come across that before.
    • mumps
    • By mumps 1st Oct 16, 7:28 PM
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    • 11,144 Thanks
    mumps
    Oh, right thanks. I hadn't come across that before.
    Originally posted by missbiggles1
    It does give you alot more options. One of my grandparents was a great admirer of a famour historical figure. There would have been no chance of a burial in the same churchyard but we did manage to get permission to bury the ashes there.
    Sell £1500

    2831.00/£1500
    • Gers
    • By Gers 2nd Oct 16, 12:24 PM
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    • 24,619 Thanks
    Gers

    Whilst I understand the legality as to the next of kin being responsible for the "disposal of the deceased's remains" I do think there is a moral dimension at work too.

    If the deceased has made their wishes known then I think we are morally obligated to try and fulfil those wishes.

    If we loved the deceased then why would we not want to do that one last service for them, especially if it means so much to them. I see it as a final act of love, cherishing their memory.
    Originally posted by lessonlearned
    An important legal principle is that the disposal of human remains is entirely down to a decision of the next of kin. There is no legal right for the deceased to have their expressed wishes complied with. You can say 'I want ...' however if your next of kin disagrees then it won't happen.

    However, I hope it's not often that that happens as respecting the wishes of a loved one is a moral decision.
    Covered it!

    And to add that his cardboard coffin and cremation was just as expensive as the traditional items - this was twenty years ago and the funeral directors had to travel from Glasgow to Carlisle to collect the coffin and the crematorium charged much more as they had to apply for a different emissions certificate.

    I'm hoping that things are easier these days.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 16th Oct 16, 9:44 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    UPDATE: Just to say that we have chosen and paid for our burial plots. We are next to each other overlooking the lake and will order an oak tree after the first death. It is strangely liberating to know this is done.

    My husband may also be going to do some voluntary work on the site - just waiting for the woodsman to call him!!

    http://www.thenaturalburialcompany.co.uk/about/
    Last edited by seven-day-weekend; 16-10-2016 at 9:50 AM.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 16th Oct 16, 10:01 AM
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    lessonlearned
    I discussed what I want with my son. I've told him I will put it writing.

    I already have an envelope containing a copy my will, power of attorney, advance directive for medical care, insurance policy etc. He knows where to find all my bank details, financial bits and pieces. I think I'm pretty sorted now.

    As you say it is liberating. I can forget about it and get on with my life.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 16th Oct 16, 10:26 AM
    • 27,820 Posts
    • 51,023 Thanks
    seven-day-weekend
    I discussed what I want with my son. I've told him I will put it writing.

    I already have an envelope containing a copy my will, power of attorney, advance directive for medical care, insurance policy etc. He knows where to find all my bank details, financial bits and pieces. I think I'm pretty sorted now.

    As you say it is liberating. I can forget about it and get on with my life.
    Originally posted by lessonlearned
    Yes , our son knows this too and knows who are executors are for our wills.

    Job done, I feel!
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
    • badmemory
    • By badmemory 16th Oct 16, 3:20 PM
    • 215 Posts
    • 191 Thanks
    badmemory
    I'm in the process of setting up a "what to do when I die" file. I've left it a bit late as usual. My name on here should actually be 'Queen of procrastination'. I have very little family left, just my son & my sister. My sister and I are in agreement that nothing could be worse for my son than being in the position of 'first mourner'. So we have both gone for very basic arrangements. We were both brought up atheists & have stuck with that (quite unusual for the time) so that is another issue out of the way. I find it really interesting though, that although my sister and I are SO different in most ways, we are in total agreement in this. For those who wonder - our parents are about to be reunited (last one scattered in other words) so that they can continue to argue until the end of time/hell freezes over. All without benefit of clergy - apart from the wedding of course.

    Just re-read that & realised it sounds a bit cynical. It isn't - it is just meant as an "each to his own" type comment. We are very happy with our arrangements as many others are with their totally opposite arrangements. In real life I have only come across one person who does not agree with my arrangements. Whoops told him that he will be dead before me so his opinion doesn't matter!!
    Last edited by badmemory; 16-10-2016 at 3:30 PM.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 16th Oct 16, 4:33 PM
    • 27,820 Posts
    • 51,023 Thanks
    seven-day-weekend
    I'm in the process of setting up a "what to do when I die" file. I've left it a bit late as usual. My name on here should actually be 'Queen of procrastination'. I have very little family left, just my son & my sister. My sister and I are in agreement that nothing could be worse for my son than being in the position of 'first mourner'. So we have both gone for very basic arrangements. We were both brought up atheists & have stuck with that (quite unusual for the time) so that is another issue out of the way. I find it really interesting though, that although my sister and I are SO different in most ways, we are in total agreement in this. For those who wonder - our parents are about to be reunited (last one scattered in other words) so that they can continue to argue until the end of time/hell freezes over. All without benefit of clergy - apart from the wedding of course.

    Just re-read that & realised it sounds a bit cynical. It isn't - it is just meant as an "each to his own" type comment. We are very happy with our arrangements as many others are with their totally opposite arrangements. In real life I have only come across one person who does not agree with my arrangements. Whoops told him that he will be dead before me so his opinion doesn't matter!!
    Originally posted by badmemory
    Hi bad memory. Yes it really is an 'each to their own' , isn't it, as it is so personal.

    My sister and b-i-l were atheists and did not have any sort of ceremony, just the cremation and then a memorial a few weeks later.

    I am a Christian so will have a celebration of life service in whichever church I'm involved with at the time. So will my husband.

    It was really the woodland burial we wanted to organise; we both like the idea of our bodies being recycled and providing habitat for wildlife.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
    • margaretclare
    • By margaretclare 19th Oct 16, 11:20 AM
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    margaretclare
    It's interesting, isn't it. Very true that there are many more options nowadays.

    When my daughter died at the end of 2002, a few weeks earlier she and I had discussed 'green burials'. I hadn't heard of them before but she had found out about them because that was the way her mind worked. She was a passionate 'greenie'. We both thought 'what a good idea'. Obviously we thought I'd be the first to go and I mentioned it to DH. Unfortunately she didn't mention it to her husband. When she died very suddenly it threw everyone into a tailspin. Those who loved her were so shocked, unable to think straight, but I remembered what she'd said. Very unfortunately, her MIL was there and she was very much against burials of any kind. Her mum had been buried on Canvey where the ground is very damp and she even said 'mum's coffin floated'. I doubt if that was the case, but of course, my SIL listened to his mother and not to me. The only concession he made was a wicker coffin and not a wooden one, for the cremation.

    Since then, it seems to me that cremation is the default position, what everyone automatically thinks of. There is usually a considerable delay, 2-3 weeks, and I think that is very disrespectful. I tend to agree with the Jews and the Muslims, that it should be quicker than that. It may be due to delays at the crematorium or it may be due to time needed to organise a social event afterwards, but I just do not like the idea of being kept in cold storage for that length of time.

    Nearly a year ago we had a funeral to go to, a friend of ours who died very suddenly in his early 50s, and that was a cremation. The funeral was conducted by his sister-in-law. Now another friend of ours died last week very suddenly, aged 47. Her funeral - cremation - is on the 28th. A lot of discussion on her husband's Facebook page and someone said 'it's a lovely crematorium, my mother and 2 other relatives were cremated there' so automatically thinking 'cremation'. It's desperately sad because we went to their wedding 2 years ago in August. They'd just been to the cinema and she suffered a bleed on the brain, eventually died when her life support system was switched off.

    As for me, it's just 3 weeks ago today that I had revision of R hip replacement, the hip that was replaced in 1987. I'm on the 'rapid release' programme, with physio and nursing visits at home. I've also had a chest infection to contend with, maybe acquired during the 3 days/2 nights in hospital, who knows. We are going to the funeral nevertheless, even though it will involve an overnight stay in a HolidayInn locally. Physio thinks it will be OK.

    Yes, we have beliefs, and yes, we do want prayers. When we were told that Karen would be switched off at 5 pm last Thursday, I said the Catholic Prayer for the Dying and DH said Amen. I don't know what her beliefs were - their wedding was civil, in a hotel. But my way of thinking is, any prayer is never wasted.
    Ær ic wisdom funde, ær wearð ic eald.
    Before I found wisdom, I became old.
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