When a loved one has passed away, it can be a bit overwhelming to think about whether it is best to cremate them or opt for burial. It is often a very upsetting time but it is important to know all the facts so you can make an informed decision.
In this article, we will go through the necessary facts and points when you considering cremation vs burial. It’s essential that you make the right decision for your family and your loved one who is now at peace.
Read through our comprehensive guide to find out more about the differences between cremation and burial for a final resting place.
Cremation vs. Burial: The Differences
Cremation and burial are two rather different approaches when it comes to how a body is preserved. When cremation is chosen, the body is incinerated so that all remains are ashes.
These are often put into urns or jars which then can be kept in someone’s home or a burial plot. They can even, at the wishes of a deceased person, be scattered at a favorite place of theirs, or somewhere which is special to them.
This can be a nice sentiment or occasion for family members to take part in, for example, if their family member loved the ocean or walking in the woods. Taking them back to a treasured place for them can be very moving.
Burial is keeping a body intact, usually placed into a coffin and then interred in the ground, tomb or mausoleum. In terms of economics and the environment, cremation is the more sensible choice usually.
The Overall Costs
You might be thinking of asking the question: ‘Well, how much does cremation cost? It is much more reasonable than you would imagine.
Depending on the type of package you go for the costs can be as little as $600-700 in total. This is an incredibly cost-effective way to respectfully take care of your loved one and their body.
In comparison to burials, burial costs can run into the tens of thousands of dollars. The service fee alone can be just short of $2000. A plot and a casket can easily cost in the range of $1000 each. And then a tombstone on average costs around the same.
The choice to have a burial is completely up to everyone’s individual preferences. However, it is worth noting that the costs to each element quickly add up. Do not be fooled into thinking that a burial is cheap because you can be hit with a massive bill at the end, unsure how you might be able to pay it.
Viewing Your Loved One
The reason why people sometimes opt for burial as opposed to cremation is that they think they can’t physically see their loved one for the last time.
This isn’t true, because cremations only take 2-3 hours in total, people can see and view their loved one and properly say goodbye.
Some people also might find the prospect of their family member decaying in the ground a traumatic prospect.
With cremation, the family members can feel comfortable in knowing where they are at all times, being treated with respect and care. Burial doesn’t offer that same level of accountability.
Impact on the Environment
When thinking about the impact on the environment in terms of cremation and burial, cremation is the obvious choice in terms of environmental factors.
The size of everyone’s burial plot and if everyone chose to have one is having a negative impact on the environment. The world simply does not have enough space for everyone to be buried.
Plots in cemeteries have a limited capacity for occupants, this is something that will become more and more of an issue as our society is put under more strain.
People are opting for eco-burials and caskets nowadays but this still doesn’t solve the problem of space. Cremation is a much more environmentally friendly and space-saving option in comparison.
Caskets and Urns
In terms of the vessel you want your loved one to reside in, this is another reason why cremation can be a better option. Urns are significantly less expensive than caskets, they are much more transportable and this might be something you see all the time.
With a casket, they are difficult to transport, can be incredibly expensive, and also something that will sit in the ground, potentially being a hindrance to the ground and the environment.
With urns, you can select one that is perfect for your loved one’s personality or your tastes. You can even add pictures to them or get it inscribed with a memorable quote or their favorite piece of poetry. This is a good way of personalizing the process of cremation and makes the whole process much more intimate as a result.
In recent years, different religions have seen a shift towards seeing cremation as a viable and respected method for their believers in death.
The Catholic Church has allowed cremation since the 1960s and many of the Christian denominations now support cremation. However, it does vary slightly depending on the particular church.
Cremation is required in religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism. Judaism now permits cremation also. Sikhs have a preference to cremation as opposed to burial but burial is allowed. Muslims are not allowed to be cremated.
Whatever your faith or religious belief, as long as your faith allows it, you should make the best choice based on you and your loved one’s preferences.
Where Can I Find Out More?
We hope this article has given you all the information you might need on the decisions and differences between cremation vs burial.
It’s important that you take into consideration all of the various factors and hidden costs before you make a decision. Make sure that decision is one that is well informed and best for yourself and your family.
If you need any more information on topics such as these, why not check out our previous posts?