Social Question

ubersiren's avatar

What do you want buried or cremated with you when you go?

Asked by ubersiren (15208points) April 23rd, 2010

We all know you can’t really take it with you, but is there some object that you want to go with your physical self that makes you more comfortable with the thought of dying?

I’m terrified of dying, and have a few things on my list. My rational side knows that it won’t make a difference if the stuff is there or not, but my irrational side doesn’t care.

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90 Answers

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I welcome death. Once any usable organs are harvested, just put whatever’s left in a hole next to my wifes grave. Just place my favorite picture of Meg next to my heart. And no ceremonies of any kind.

thriftymaid's avatar

I can’t think of anything that I want cremated along with my body. But, I’m going to be thinking about it now; thanks a lot!

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

Burial and cremation are a waste of a good body. I want to be dissected in a lab for scientific research or education. There’s not much point in having any material objects with me at that point.

Draconess25's avatar

Ah, then someone doesn’t believe in the same afterlife I do! I believe you can take the essence of something with you. For example, if you take a sword, you’ll have its strength. If you take a match or a lighter, then you’ll have the flame’s passion.

I wanna be thrown in a volcano! If that isn’t how I die….

slick44's avatar

Cremate me and sprinkle my ashes somewhere peacfull and beutiful.

JeffVader's avatar

I wouldn’t mind being cremated with some TNT…. it’d certainly liven-up my funeral.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@JeffVader Not too much though, or you might end up in a mass grave with some of your best friends.

slick44's avatar

@Draconess25 wow i want to rest in peace, when i go. had enough excitment here on earth.

jfos's avatar

Nothing—I want to be buried naked, straight into the ground. No clothes, no coffin.

slick44's avatar

@jfos .. is that like a double wammy ? never mind they took one of you

xRIPxTHEREVx's avatar

Buried. There’s just something a little more natural and peaceful about it

MarcoNJ's avatar

Bury me with a case of Heineken. Just in case the after-life is lively. I wanna feel nice.

lynfromnm's avatar

I want my body donated to medical science at a university close to wherever I die. Usually the medical school will cremate the body after they have used it.

martyjacobs's avatar

Burried with a bell (just in case I’m still alive).

rebbel's avatar

With a laptop, to report whether there is an afterlife after all or not.
Depending on there being an internet connection.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

Buried. Cremation creeps me out. We’ve had our cemetery plots since the 70’s. They’re next to my parents. Our double headstone is in place. I just hope we don’t use any of it for a long time yet.

filmfann's avatar

I have told my kids I want my remains scattered in the ocean, but that I do not want to be cremated.
Just chum the waters with me.

Cruiser's avatar

I would like to be cremated with my kazoo, a dozen chocolate cupcakes, my deer knife and my laptop!

slick44's avatar

Whats with the laptops? where are you going to plug them in? You bettre charge that battery in advance. lol

ubersiren's avatar

Party in @Cruiser‘s casket!

I think a few of you have misread the question. ;) Still, interesting answers.

poisonedantidote's avatar

i would like to be buried with a time bomb that goes off after one month and splatters me all over the surrounding area.

j0ey's avatar

…..If there is any chance that I am not actually dead….I would rather be burnt to a crisp…then possibly waking up 6ft under.

I know I will definitely be dead…but just the thought of being buried alive by mistake is enough to make me prefer cremation.

MarcoNJ's avatar

@poisonedantidote Damn. Go out with a bang huh? You should have some fireworks too. That would be hot.

thriftymaid's avatar

@poisonedantidote That’s a bit creepy.

ubersiren's avatar

@poisonedantidote Your response in combination with your picture and username makes me think of the Columbine incident.

Kayak8's avatar

For those interested in donating their bodies to “science,” please read “Stiff” by Mary Roach. Some are used for medical research and others are used for a variety of other scientific explorations (testing seatbelts, testing airbags, etc). All of these are valuable and helpful to your fellow humans, but not everyone becomes a med school cadaver. So if that is how you plan to go to med school, you need to be specific now in your preparation of documents to support your goals.

I train search dogs and we are able to obtain small bits of donated folks for use in training our dogs to find human remains (think murder scene). This is invaluable in our efforts to assist law enforcement with bringing closure to families and locating evidence.

And there really is a “body farm” in TN to which people make donations to further assist the advancement of forensic science. (They have a waiting list last I checked).

While cremation is considered final disposition of human remains (you don’t have to be buried), many people are embalmed first (for the viewing) and then cremated after. This just makes everything more expensive. (Why burn the $10K box you hung out in for a day or two?)

I really wish people would take the time to do advanced planning of their final wishes so that 1) they could plan a cost effective last tribute (rather than family members guilt-tripped into unnecessary expenditures), 2) they can typically have the send-off be exactly what they want, and 3) they can relax and feel fairly confident their wishes will be completed in the fashion they intended.

You don’t own your body (it is NOT your property), so do NOT put wishes for its final care in your will (by the time anyone reads the will, it will be too late). There are special forms for advance directives about your wishes on this subject (although in some states a family member can change the plans—if they are willing to pay for the new plan).

MarcoNJ's avatar

@Kayak8 I am moved by your reasons for donating. But I disagree with one line. If I don’t own my body, who does?

El_Cadejo's avatar

Its funny you ask this question. My girlfriend and I were just talking about this last night.

I dont want my body put in a casket if I end up going into the ground. I think it defeats the purpose. Just dig a hole and throw me in it. Let my body decompose and become one with the earth once again.

Ideally though, I would like to be cut up and spread out over a reef. I know it sounds pretty grim, but I want my body to give back to nature. I want to feed animals when I no longer have any use for my body anymore. I think that would be a much more meaningful way of going then put in some insanely overpriced box that is later buried.

My dream though, is by the time I am close to death, we are advanced enough in space travel that is economically viable. I want to be launched into space in a little pod or something with enough supplies to spend the last couple years of my life before I finally expire.

Fyrius's avatar

I don’t know. If there’s anything I want in there, it’ll be only for symbolic reasons.

Dying means losing everything you have, even your body matter. It’s a shame, but it’s inevitable. You can’t hold on to anything by having it put in your coffin. You’d only make sure no one else can have it either.
I for one would not want to be that stingy. Anything that could be put in my coffin would probably do more good outside it, so please let someone who can use it have it instead. Though if there’s anything you need to get rid of and this would be the perfect way, I’m all for it.

Side note: I think it’s a good thing to have a rational and an irrational side, by the way. It’s better than having just one side that’s a bit of both. At least this way it’s possible to tell rational thoughts and irrational thoughts apart.

theveteran's avatar

I would like to be buried. Whether one wants to have their bodies cremated remains a personal choice

DarkScribe's avatar

I want to be buried with a picture of me holding my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandson.

thriftymaid's avatar

@DarkScribe I suppose you plan to paint this picture prior to.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@DarkScribe And I hope you can. :-)

Luellen's avatar

my rosary from Medjugorje

Sophief's avatar

I would like to be cremated with a picture of my s/o, and a red rose.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I like Draconess25 s idea. Toss my sidearm in the hole with me. I might need it in Valhalla.

Kayak8's avatar

@uberbatman That really does give I-Pod an entirely new meaning!

ZEPHYRA's avatar

I would love a bonfire night!

Shiningkat's avatar

I’m an adult but there is a little stuffed bear that means a lot to me that I’ve already said I want buried with me.

ChaosCross's avatar

Maybe a sweet sword or something…

zophu's avatar

Old-growth-forest seeds. Just for an excuse to get people to actually fucking plant something useful in the ground besides my rotting corpse.

Imagine if instead of fields of crumbling stones, we left centurion forests as our grave“yards”

Fyrius's avatar

In case the Vikings were right all along? :P

wundayatta's avatar

I don’t care. I’ll be dead. My descendants can do whatever is easiest or most meaningful to them. I hope that no one says, “he would have wanted it that way.”

I do hope they’ll have a party, but it doesn’t matter. I won’t know.

MacBean's avatar

@Kayak8 That book is actually what made me decide for sure that I want my body donated to science. Have you read Mary Roach’s other books?

Fyrius's avatar

“I hope that no one says, “he would have wanted it that way.””
What an awkward situation that puts them in.
“Let’s not talk about what he would have wanted. He would have wanted us not to.”

CMaz's avatar

I want to be cremated, and I want the whole world population to come along.

wundayatta's avatar

@Fyrius What I want is irrelevant. Funerals and memorials are for those who are still alive. It’s what they want that counts. I want them to remember me (or not) how they would like to remember me. They can’t make me happy any more. But they can help themselves grieve (if they feel any grief). If it’s too much bother, then I don’t think they should bother. Like I say, the skin on my teeth already been peeled.

ucme's avatar

A plate full of humble pie.Just in case God does exist.I’d eat a large portion & then probably some more for good measure.Chance favours the prepared mind,or some other shit like that.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

When I go, I’m taking all of you with me

better start packing

gailcalled's avatar

I have the last plot in a large family compound. My daughter wants it, so I told her to cremate me and throw the ashes on her garden.

artemis5200's avatar

I would like a funeral pyre but alas I don’t think that is legal in this country. I do however like the idea of giving my body to science as I can’t think I would have much use for it. I do not have any religious upbringing nor much thoughts of an afterlife in any way that I can understand at this time, but I do not fear death. I am not looking forward to it by any means tho, just thought that should be said. But dead is dead and as far as I know we all die. I wish people did not fear death or change so much when it is such a natural part of life. But i do understand why people do. If it helps you to find peace take with you what you will into death.

gailcalled's avatar

My sister would like to have her corpse left in a high tree as carrion. Unfortunately that is illegal, also.

Coloma's avatar

Cremation….I plan on using up all my organs before I go. What am I saving them for? Slide out sideways wine in ne hand chocolate in the other!

But hey..I am a hedonist…not into too much discipline and scarifice. lol

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

I’m not sure whether I want to buried or cremated yet. But one thing I wish I could take with me would be my husband.

ubersiren's avatar

My two best friends and I said that whoever dies first must be cremated so the other two can make an ash cake out of us and eat it. Although, I heard that it’s illegal to do anything with ashes… does anyone know if that’s true? I heard that they can’t be scattered anywhere or disposed of and must be accounted for at all times. Maybe it depends on the state (US). I hope it’s not true because so many people I know have plans for where they want their ashes to go.

ubersiren's avatar

@Shiningkat I have a puppy I’d like to be with me!

@zophu What a fantastic answer! I love that idea.

Coloma's avatar


Hmmm…I have never entertained anything like that! :-/

I’d say that one could do that without being subject to any would anyone find out, and what could be done after the fact?

I’d just think that it would be prudent to make sure there are no sharp bone fragments in said remains, you could end up like a dog that ate a chicken bone. Not good! lol

Jeez..if you’re gonna go to those extremes you might as well find a friend thats given birth too and bake a placenta casserole to go with the ash cake. lolololol

( Ewwwwww )

AstroChuck's avatar

As I’ll be dead I don’t, and won’t, care about anything.

WestRiverrat's avatar

I hope very little of me is left to be cremated or buried. I am an organ donor, and the more they harvest from me means the more folks I can help have a better life.

majorrich's avatar

I have a wax cast of my hand raised in a one fingered salute. I wish to be cremated and mixed with water and cast in that mold. My last great act of defiance. The wife unit is not real keen on this idea and probably won’t do it. I do have a nice jar I picked up in Iran that I think I will fit in. Just JB Weld the lid on and plunk me in a hole. They allow 2 to a plot in the Cemetary where our plot is, so my Wife and I can share a spot.

anartist's avatar

why would i care?

ubersiren's avatar

@majorrich I encourage you to do this.

OneMoreMinute's avatar

Cremation with a catnip loaded memorial service. I want Felix the cat angel of death to carry me off to kitty heaven, where I will be worshiped by all my pet kitties. And the litter boxes are always cleaned and lined with gold.

wundayatta's avatar

Anyone a dog fan around here?

Draconess25's avatar

@wundayatta I like doggies! And kitties! And DRAGONS!!!!

OneMoreMinute's avatar

@Draconess25 YEAH!!!
did ya see “how to train yer dragon?” gooood one!

@wundayatta whuuuuh?

Draconess25's avatar

@OneMoreMinute At first I didn’t want to see it, because it seemed racist toward dragons. But then I saw a preview that said “get ready to hug a dragon”, & I felt loved. So, now, I REALLY want to see it!

OneMoreMinute's avatar

@Draconess25 It’s super spectacular in 3D if you can.

OneMoreMinute's avatar

@Draconess25 No, it’s still in theaters. It’s great fun! Especially for dragon hearts!
Do you have dragon friends to go with?

gailcalled's avatar

Back to the thread; Remember the thread and keep it holy.

Sadly, I can report that what goes into a coffin or into the inferno are items that help assuage the grief of those who mourn. And after 10 years, for me at least, the symbolism loses its power, and I look to the memories.

OneMoreMinute's avatar

@gailcalled lol…oh whups! must have got carried away by a dragon!

majorrich's avatar

I have money set aside to pay for a kegger for my Army brethren who make it to my memorial. My Humidor will be opened and they guys will have a party on the Major one last time to remember me. I hope they have a good time.

anartist's avatar

The bad thing about so many coffins, not all, is they are all kinds of fancy metal with fancy seals that don’t allow the body to do the “ashes to ashes, dust to dust” thing but just leave you parked in there like landfill debris.

Draconess25's avatar

@anartist Would said metal melt in lava?

Fyrius's avatar

I don’t think many funeral agencies can afford the technology to dig that deep…

Draconess25's avatar

@Fyrius No, silly! I’m gonna be thrown in a volcano!

Besides, that would be considered, magma, not lava.

anartist's avatar

@Draconess25 yes I suppose so, but why plan for the fluke event instead of the likelihood?
I guess to make it more direct, we could request to be processed into Soylent Green.

Draconess25's avatar

@anartist If my funeral isn’t on an active volcano, I’ll throw myself in! And not head first!

DarkScribe's avatar

@Draconess25 If my funeral isn’t on an active volcano, I’ll throw myself in! And not head first!

I gather that if someone tells you to “Sit on it!” you take the suggestion seriously?

zophu's avatar

@Draconess25 shh, shh. @DarkScribe is owning you with oldman wit. don’t make it worse for yourself.

DarkScribe's avatar

@Draconess25 Sit on what?


Draconess25's avatar

@DarkScribe But It is what I call my brother! I don’t wanna sit on him!

zophu's avatar

@Draconess25 Making things as weird and obscure as possible doesn’t make them disappear. Remember that.

Draconess25's avatar

@zophu He’s disappeared enough for me! He just got thrown in prison!

malcomkade's avatar

17 live chickens and a shit load of illegal fireworks.

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