Big Think had an article in mid 2011 that I just stumbled across and it made me think. The article is about an urn that will turn you into a tree when you die. The premise is that, after death, you are cremated and have you remains placed in the urn with soil and seeds then planted. The urn itself is fully biodegradable. Your remains then help to fertilize the tree.
Now, as a secular person, this made me think. One of the appeals of religion to many is the idea of an afterlife. They want to know that it gets better after they leave this world. There must be more. There must be some reward.
Thought we can't, of course, be 100% sure regarding an afterlife, I'm pretty confident that once I leave this world, I will cease to exist. That doesn't frighten me. I'm actually pretty indifferent to the fact. That said, however, why not leave my mark?
You see, no matter how great you become, how renowned, how famous...we all die alone in many ways. We enter the world screaming, but we leave with a whisper. Why draw it out with the pomp and circumstance of a large funeral, expensive casket and a fancy stone to mark the plot of someone that most human beings care nothing about?
Leave your mark with something that lasts. The closest thing to an afterlife for the non-believer is something like this. Enter the earth to bring new life. It's almost poetic.
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