Burial or Cremation: Does it matter what you choose?

Burial Or Cremation: Does it matter what you choose?

With the passing of a loved one there are a lot of emotions and choices to face. Often the logistics of what to do when someone passes away can be overwhelming for a family. One decision that needs to be made very early on is what to do with the departed.

In Australia, there are two clear choices: burial or cremation. Both options are suitable, but the decision will come down to budget, personal preferences, religious beliefs, and wishes of the deceased. This article will give a thorough overview of both options, while going through the advantages and constraints of either choice.

Burials

Much of our human history has demonstrated the need to honour and respect our loved one’s passing in a ritual burial. Traditionally, the practice of burial have existed for over 100,000 years. The motivations for burial differ from culture, region, and religion. It can be for reasons of hygiene, a necessary path to the afterlife, religious reasons, or to bring a sense of closure to friends and family.

Within Australia, the practice of burial has strong roots today. Should you be considering a burial, here are some of the key points that will affect your decision:

Advantages

  • Traditional method of burial in numerous religions
  • Gives a permanent location to visit loved one
  • Considered a more ‘natural’ method
  • Allows for a loved one to ‘keep’ burial items

Constraints

  • Fixed location limits visiting
  • Cemeteries can restrict options
  • Costs are at least 3x higher than cremation

Cremations:

Cremation UrnWith the rise of urban city dwellers and a shortage of land within Australian cities, cremations are the leading method for how families are honouring their departed loved ones. In some cities, cremations account for nearly 70% of all memorials. For those looking to understand the cremation process a little better, this article goes through everything you need to know.

Religions that prohibit cremations: Orthodox Judaism, Islam, and Eastern Orthodoxy.

In case you would like to know more, here are some of the advantages and constraints with moving ahead with cremation:

Advantages:

  • Only method of funeral in Eastern religions
  • Remains can be moved, kept,  or given to multiple people
  • Least costly method

Constraints:

  • Might conflict with religious beliefs of family
  • Can release pollutants in the environment
  • Doesn’t offer permanent location with whole remains

Now that you have a general overview, you might be able to tell which way you are leaning towards. There is plenty of other research you can do, but having a sense of the advantages and constraints of what burials and cremations in Australia can offer might make the decision a little easier.