Perhaps you have been reading or hearing about the shift towards alternative funerals. ‘Alternative’ means different things to different people, but a funeral is a deeply personal experience, and you should feel free to develop a funeral that reflects your unique life. I write in more detail about funerals, grief and bereavement on my funeral website.
Alternative funerals: Some examples
Green funerals: Sustainability in life and death
One of the greatest gifts my parents left me was a small share in a heritage block in the Flinders Ranges. It has no material value. It cannot be ‘developed’ or sold for profit, but it is a true treasure.
Many of us have spent our lives trying to create a life that doesn’t harm our environment, and we want to make sure our final acts and choices reflect that too. Some of those choices are obvious, for example, the materials used for the coffin. But you want a service that reflects your life’s philosophy too.
As someone who became a vegetarian in her twenties, marched in anti-nuclear rallies led by Peter Garrett, and finds peace in the smell of a lemon-scented gum, I know that a green funeral goes even deeper than the tangible choices that people will see.
Feminist funerals: Equality in life and death
I named my funeral business Vivimento after my mum, Vivienne whose final day was a profound lesson in what ‘the personal is political’ really means. I don’t know many people who say they write feminist funerals, but I am proud to run a business founded on the feminist principles my mother taught me. If you, like Vivienne, have spent your whole life smashing the patriarchy, thank you! Or perhaps you are organising a funeral for someone like my mum. I will help to make sure the ceremony not only honours their feminist but truly reflects their life’s philosophy.
You can read more about my work as a funeral celebrant on my funerals website.