1. Post #1
    LegndNikko's Avatar
    October 2009
    9,336 Posts
    One of the many, backwards concepts of Brave New World was the lack of cemeteries.
    The reason in the novel was because 1) people would waste time mourning, and 2) it was a massive waste of space.

    Do any of you agree with this? Why, or why not?

    I, for one, agree with it. I find cemeteries to be a complete waste. Massive plots of lands are reserved for the sole purpose of burying a corpse in a fancy box, only for a generation or two to mourn the person who has died.

  2. Post #2
    Gold Member
    carcarcargo's Avatar
    October 2007
    15,123 Posts
    If someone has the money to pay for a grave let them

  3. Post #3
    Proudly supporting the JIDF
    Dennab
    July 2010
    22,111 Posts
    I think a more efficient idea is cremation, that way not only does there not need to be land used up but you won't have idiot chavs who push over gravestones in cemeteries and they end up pushing one on their leg.

    My great-grandparents were both cremated, and their ashes were poured into a cairn if I recall.

  4. Post #4
    Gold Member

    August 2007
    2,992 Posts
    Honouring the dead has always been a part of humanity, burying them (if that is their wish) is tradition, and when it comes to funerals and death, not a lot of people will argue against it.

    Personally I don't think people have gotten past the stage where they think cemeteries are irrevelant, and I guess I kinda like them, although I can't think of a solid reason why. It serves as a reminder of the people before us, and a bit of seriousness and perspective doesn't go amiss in today's world.

  5. Post #5
    King of the Oil Refinery
    Tobba's Avatar
    December 2008
    6,225 Posts
    The novel has some good points

    And in alot of old graveyards, I doubt actually 75% of all caskets have anything near idenfitiable as a human corpse in them

  6. Post #6
    Gold Member
    Arachnidus's Avatar
    July 2007
    7,544 Posts
    Cemeteries are an outdated relic of society, but they're also an important cultural icon. Not only are they religiously significant, but I know more than a few people that wouldn't be comfortable with the idea of being cremated after death.

    Historic ones should be kept, as well as memorials, but the concept of burying is just so...inefficient, as horrible as it sounds. The fact that we use so much land just to, as you said, OP, keep our rotting corpses (which will eventually decay into nothing as it is) inside a casket six feet below the ground is insane. All that land could be used for so much more.

    And yet, you can't really do away with them, because that's our society. Cemeteries are monuments to the lives of billions. Whole existences, concentrated on a plot of ground where families can mourn and memorials can be built. From a moral and cultural standpoint, they're an important part of the world, but from a purely resource-oriented one...they're a giant drain.

  7. Post #7
    King of the Oil Refinery
    Tobba's Avatar
    December 2008
    6,225 Posts
    If anything, something interesting would be pouring the ashes from cremated people into one massive jar, as a monument that would honour all the dead inside it

  8. Post #8
    Gold Member
    carcarcargo's Avatar
    October 2007
    15,123 Posts
    But if someone has the money to afford the coffin and plot of land who are we to say they can't?

  9. Post #9
    Gold Member
    Anti Christ's Avatar
    December 2009
    2,390 Posts
    While I understand why people want to be buried, I also think that sometimes we need people to think about what it does. We're a growing species, with a limited planet. Since it doesn't look like we're going to be on another one anytime soon, we need to be able to use this one. Taking up massive amounts of space to mourn the dead was okay 100 years ago, because we didn't have near as many people. But with the sudden increase in human population, and the expected continual rise in population, we're going to need more land.

    As wrong as people may think this is, we need to find a better way to mourn the dead. Cemeteries just can't be used for much longer. Traditions may be sacred to some, but sometimes you just need to change, regardless of how sacred something may be. And it's because of tradition, that a lot of people will disagree with my opinion, but I honestly believe we'll need the space in the future. Cemeteries are an ancient tradition, and with the technology we have now, I think it's time we start a new one, that helps us more than it hurts us.

  10. Post #10
    Gold Member
    carcarcargo's Avatar
    October 2007
    15,123 Posts
    While I understand why people want to be buried, I also think that sometimes we need people to think about what it does. We're a growing species, with a limited planet. Since it doesn't look like we're going to be on another one anytime soon, we need to be able to use this one. Taking up massive amounts of space to mourn the dead was okay 100 years ago, because we didn't have near as many people. But with the sudden increase in human population, and the expected continual rise in population, we're going to need more land.

    As wrong as people may think this is, we need to find a better way to mourn the dead. Cemeteries just can't be used for much longer. Traditions may be sacred to some, but sometimes you just need to change, regardless of how sacred something may be. And it's because of tradition, that a lot of people will disagree with my opinion, but I honestly believe we'll need the space in the future. Cemeteries are an ancient tradition, and with the technology we have now, I think it's time we start a new one, that helps us more than it hurts us.
    We're only a growing species in LEDC's , you will find most MEDC's have plenty of space.

  11. Post #11
    Chezhead's Avatar
    December 2009
    7,267 Posts
    I think that people have the right to bury their dead, but it shouldn't be forced one way or another. I will personally donate my body to science so some collage kids can dissect my dead body and learn more about human organs and such, instead of those lousy bacteria having all the fun, eating my dead body.

  12. Post #12
    Gold Member
    Anti Christ's Avatar
    December 2009
    2,390 Posts
    We're only a growing species in LEDC's , you will find most MEDC's have plenty of space.
    Well, I have no idea what you're talking about, so I tried finding out what an LEDC is and all I found is the Latino Economic Development Corporation. Could you explain what those are?

  13. Post #13
    Gold Member
    carcarcargo's Avatar
    October 2007
    15,123 Posts
    Well, I have no idea what you're talking about, so I tried finding out what an LEDC is and all I found is the Latino Economic Development Corporation. Could you explain what those are?
    Less Economically Developed Countries. Third world countries essentially.

  14. Post #14
    Gold Member
    Anti Christ's Avatar
    December 2009
    2,390 Posts
    Lower Economically Developed Countries. Third world countries essentially.
    Huh, I've never heard of that term before.
    Anyway, it seems like it would be the other way around. MEDC's have likely used a lot more of the available land than LEDC's, so they would have less land to use to bury the dead. However, it still seems like we need to change how we treat the dead. In the end, we're using space that could be used for housing, or public services. I believe cremation is a very good method, as it takes up very little space, and the family can keep the remains of the deceased in their own home. However, I don't know the effects it has on the environment, so it may not be the best thing we can do. It seems better in every other aspect though.

  15. Post #15
    Gold Member
    DaCommie1's Avatar
    June 2008
    7,178 Posts
    Let the dead rest. If they paid for the plot of land, which they do in modern cemeteries, they own that plot of land, and it's the only thing they retain ownership of after death.

    Personally, I hate walking on cemeteries, it's like when you're in someone's house but you feel kinda uninvited. It's an awkward feeling, like you're intruding on them or something. I worked at a church 3 years, I had to bury 5 people, and I still don't like walking on cemeteries, and I definitely don't like burying people, really depressing work.

  16. Post #16
    Gold Member
    BradB's Avatar
    February 2008
    2,117 Posts
    "All that space" used by cemetaries will just get shopping centres and apartments put on it. In a time that cities continue to sprawl out larger every day, and forests and nature reserves smaller and rarer, they're not so common nor large that they can't stay; it's nice to have some green space in an area even if it is a cemetary.

    There is endless suburban sprawl that could be just as easily utilized without getting rid of the cemetaries.

  17. Post #17
    Gold Member
    carcarcargo's Avatar
    October 2007
    15,123 Posts
    Huh, I've never heard of that term before.
    Anyway, it seems like it would be the other way around. MEDC's have likely used a lot more of the available land than LEDC's, so they would have less land to use to bury the dead. However, it still seems like we need to change how we treat the dead. In the end, we're using space that could be used for housing, or public services. I believe cremation is a very good method, as it takes up very little space, and the family can keep the remains of the deceased in their own home. However, I don't know the effects it has on the environment, so it may not be the best thing we can do. It seems better in every other aspect though.
    Most MEDC's don't need space for housing since there is plenty of space, the only places that should be worrying are places like china and india.

  18. Post #18
    Soviet Bread's Avatar
    January 2011
    365 Posts
    The moment we as humans stop taking care of our dead, the moment we lose sight of our own humanity. How can we take care of our living if we won't even give respect to the dead?

    In terms of having it waste land? There's plenty of places that waste land.

  19. Post #19
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    Dennab
    July 2010
    22,111 Posts
    The moment we as humans stop taking care of our dead, the moment we lose sight of our own humanity. How can we take care of our living if we won't even give respect to the dead?

    In terms of having it waste land? There's plenty of places that waste land.
    It's generally good to reduce wastage wherever possible.

    Plus cremation is a way of actually respecting the dead. One of the first Romans to be cremated was Sulla, for the reason that enemies could not dig up and mutilate his corpse.

    Another problem with burying a corpse is it lets off noxious gases, and leaving a person to rot in noxious gases is indeed a problem. Along with this many coffins implode over time, crushing the occupant into dust.

  20. Post #20
    OvB
    Facepunch resident scientist
    OvB's Avatar
    March 2007
    13,115 Posts
    The moment we as humans stop taking care of our dead, the moment we lose sight of our own humanity. How can we take care of our living if we won't even give respect to the dead?

    In terms of having it waste land? There's plenty of places that waste land.
    We can still honor and care for the dead after we dumped them into the ocean, turned their bodies into pulverized ash, or liquified them and dump them into the sewer. It's the thought that counts, not what you do with the lifeless waste of space. Bodies should be disposed of in a respectable and efficient manner.

  21. Post #21
    Gold Member
    Rocko's's Avatar
    February 2011
    11,574 Posts
    Cemeteries are just there to bury someone you loved, that way you could remember them forever. Or, until the cemetery is destroyed. But holy shit can some of them be expensive, and it gets to the point where you just burn them to ashes and put them into a glass with their photo. But if someone breaks that glass or cup or whatever, then thats that.

  22. Post #22
    abcpea3's Avatar
    October 2008
    250 Posts
    cemeteries are essentially parks. are parks a waste of space?

  23. Post #23
    OvB
    Facepunch resident scientist
    OvB's Avatar
    March 2007
    13,115 Posts
    Another problem with burying a corpse is it lets off noxious gases, and leaving a person to rot in noxious gases is indeed a problem. Along with this many coffins implode over time, crushing the occupant into dust.
    I thought most wood coffins imploded almost instantly from the weight of the 6 feet of dirt above it. It's not really a problem because eventually the body will be recycled back into the ground and leave nothing but bones and crushed wood particles from the coffin. Which would eventually rot away themselves.

  24. Post #24
    LegndNikko's Avatar
    October 2009
    9,336 Posts
    The moment we as humans stop taking care of our dead, the moment we lose sight of our own humanity. How can we take care of our living if we won't even give respect to the dead?

    In terms of having it waste land? There's plenty of places that waste land.
    Define "losing sight of our own humanity?"
    I see mourning the dead as a waste. Honestly, as cruel is it may seem to some, some of society's "values" are completely worthless to me. Like honoring the dead. I see no point in it other than "it's tradition."

  25. Post #25
    I agree with Legend, in fact, I think we should cannibalize our dead.

    Edited:

    Well, depending on whether it's actually social or intrinsic to human nature. And how hard it would be to change it in both situations.

  26. Post #26
    Proudly supporting the JIDF
    Dennab
    July 2010
    22,111 Posts
    I agree with Legend, in fact, I think we should cannibalize our dead.

    Edited:

    Well, depending on whether it's actually social or intrinsic to human nature. And how hard it would be to change it in both situations.
    Cannibalism is a logical idea, however food is already very plentiful in a number of places and secondly many people find the idea repulsive.

  27. Post #27
    1nfiniteseed's Avatar
    December 2008
    1,290 Posts
    As easy as it may be for a lot of people to shove off mourning the dead as a waste of energy, it's far easier to say that when you haven't experienced any such loss yourself.

    Cemeteries are very much ingrained in our culture, and they hold a lot of sentimental value to a lot of people who have lost their love ones. As for the space they take, do you have any suggestions as to what would be put in their place? Many cemeteries in America have existed since the early 20th century, and many of them have become part of the communities they exist in.

  28. Post #28
    OvB
    Facepunch resident scientist
    OvB's Avatar
    March 2007
    13,115 Posts
    Cannibalism is a logical idea, however food is already very plentiful in a number of places and secondly many people find the idea repulsive.
    You have to consider how the person died though. If they died from some disease it could be passed down to whomever eats it. Or if they die of natural causes at 90, the meat might not exactly be desirable.

  29. Post #29
    Proudly supporting the JIDF
    Dennab
    July 2010
    22,111 Posts
    You have to consider how the person died though. If they died from some disease it could be passed down to whomever eats it. Or if they die of natural causes at 90, the meat might not exactly be desirable.
    Minus those problems yeah, but in the case of healthy/edible meat I see why not. (Minus morals and ethics of it._

  30. Post #30
    Folgergeist's Avatar
    December 2010
    1,077 Posts
    The reason for burials in boxes was that christians believed that some day jesus would return and rise everyone from the dead or something like that

    I think cremation is the most practical way to dispose of the dead, just revert them back to their base element of carbon

  31. Post #31
    Gold Member
    Zeke129's Avatar
    July 2007
    41,877 Posts
    Does anyone have any links to reputable studies about the environmental effects of embalming/cemeteries/so forth? This thread made me curious.

    Seems like by preserving corpses we're harming the environment.

  32. Post #32
    Spirit Guide
    Big Dumb American's Avatar
    March 2009
    17,176 Posts
    Every society disposes of its dead in different ways depending on the beliefs and customs inherent within their dominant culture, and they will evolve as the world does. For instance, the Tibetan practice of "Sky Burials," dismembering the dead and leaving their remains exposed for the vultures, stemmed from the fact that the ground was hard and stony. Burying the dead was simply too difficult, and since their religious beliefs touted the body as more than a vessel for the soul, there were no societal qualms about disposing of it in such a matter. However, as society has evolved, Sky Burials have become increasingly less popular. Burying the dead is much easier with backhoes.

    I believe that graveyards will slowly go the way of the sky burial. We developed from a highly ritualized faith, interring the dead in some manner is an integral part of our culture. However, necessity will force us to adapt our rituals. Cremation will probably be the preferred method of internment in the future, a bundle of ashes doesn't take as much space as a fully embalmed body. Western culture will probably always place symbolic and religious meaning on places devoted to remembering and interring the dead, but places of remembrance will be more symbolic than literal.

    It's not so much the specific manner in which we dispose of our dead that will define the future of our death ceremonies, but the symbolic significance and rituals our culture values. As our needs evolve, so will our practices.

  33. Post #33
    Gold Member
    Mlisen14's Avatar
    September 2008
    3,899 Posts
    With all the eco-awareness in the last ten years, I'd be inclined to say that a move towards natural burials is quite likely. I hadn't heard about them until I watched Six Feet Under a few years ago. In one of the episodes there was debate about being buried naked in a shroud in a national park. It seems like the logical thing to do would be giving back a body which was so detached from nature for such a long time. Burning them and keeping them in a pot seems like a waste of resources, while burying them in a plot hardly benefits the ecosystem for long, especially if most of the area is cemented over.

  34. Post #34
    ~Tital~
    napalm_bomb's Avatar
    July 2009
    1,194 Posts
    If I could when I die, I would want to be launched into space. That shit would be cool.

  35. Post #35
    Laserbeams's Avatar
    February 2010
    10,047 Posts
    I want to be cremated when I die, cemeteries suck, I don't want rot and become worm food.

  36. Post #36
    Gold Member
    Used Car Salesman's Avatar
    April 2009
    9,050 Posts
    Given how little of this planet we've actually paved over and industrialized, I don't think cemeteries are going to be a problem for a VERY long time.

    Besides, cremated people can't be dug up and studied by future archeologists.

  37. Post #37
    Gold Member
    Venezuelan's Avatar
    September 2011
    12,172 Posts
    You can not like it all you want, it's their freedom to do so.

    Also, I think you should stop and think about the fact that you're agreeing with elements of a blatant dystopian society.

  38. Post #38
    Follow me on GitHub!
    Ziks's Avatar
    June 2011
    2,099 Posts
    I don't care what happens to my body after death. As far as I am concerned my mind is all I am. When I die that mind is lost, preserving the vessel that carried it around for a few years just seems pointless.

  39. Post #39
    ~Tital~
    napalm_bomb's Avatar
    July 2009
    1,194 Posts
    I don't care what happens to my body after death. As far as I am concerned my mind is all I am. When I die that mind is lost, preserving the vessel that carried it around for a few years just seems pointless.
    Bro, that was deep like the other side of the pool.

  40. Post #40
    Gold Member
    papaya's Avatar
    June 2010
    6,847 Posts
    Earlier this year I went to the scattering of my grandmother's ashes. Since the area they were doing it in was quite a way into the graveyard, I was able to look at most of the gravestones on the way in. It was a fairly small graveyard in the back of a church, and most of the gravestones were faded.

    The thing is, graveyards have that eerie sense of silence about them, and even if you are there for a service or whatever, you can't help but feel like you are trespassing.

    In all honesty, I think graveyards are one of those traditional things that we don't often know why we still use.

    When I die, I don't really mind what happens to my body. If it can be put to good use, I will be more than happy for that to happen.