Different Funeral Traditions Around the World

Different cultures around the world deal with death in different ways. Many choose to have a cremation or burial ceremony just like in the U.S., however, there are some funeral ceremonies that are drastically different than what people in the U.S. are accustomed to. In today’s blog here at Bohlender Funeral Chapel in Fort Collins, we talk about other beautiful funeral ceremony traditions and where they are popular. 

Learn more about our funeral home services here at Bohlender Funeral Chapel in Fort Collins and get help planning the perfect celebration of life for your loved one. 

New Orleans Jazz Funerals

You might be thinking, “Well, New Orleans is in the U.S.!” — and you’re right. But, that doesn’t mean that they can’t have unique funeral ceremony traditions. Not everyone in New Orleans has a jazz funeral, but anyone can request one if they’d like. However, most jazz funerals are held for musicians. 

In a traditional jazz funeral, the funeral ceremony begins at the church or funeral home and is then led to the cemetery by a marching band. The music starts off slow and heavy while everyone is walking to the cemetery. Once the body is buried and people are on the way back from the cemetery, the music becomes upbeat and celebratory to honor and celebrate the departed. Anyone and everyone nearby are encouraged to join as long as they are respectful and courteous. 

Eternal Reefs

Eternal Reefs is a Florida-based company that has taken a completely new approach to funerals. Eternal Reefs takes cremated remains and places them in an environmentally safe concrete urn. The urn is created in such a way that it creates new habitats for marine wildlife. This makes it so that you or your loved one become a part of a coral reef and help to support new life. Eternal Reefs are a great way to commemorate your loved one and help them make the world a better place. 

Even though there are no oceans or coral reefs here in Fort Collins, that doesn’t stop our family at Bohlender Funeral Chapel from offering a funeral ceremony that is beneficial for the family and the earth. We are proud to offer our green burial funeral service, learn more about it here at Bohlender Funeral Chapel.

Burial Beads

In certain areas of the world, there is very limited space for burials and other traditional funeral ceremony practices. One method that South Korea has been practicing regularly is the burial bead funeral ceremony. With burial beads, cremated remains are pressed into beautiful beads that closely resemble that of jewelry or pearls. A wide variety of colors and urn options are available. This is a way for the people of South Korea to find beauty from a difficult situation while also making use of the limited space.

The Philippines

All across the Philippines, funeral ceremonies vary wildly. There are more than nine very different funeral traditions across the country. Some of the more poetic and beautiful traditions include tree burials and hanging coffins. 

Tree Burials

Tree burials are most commonly practiced in the Cavite region of the Philippines. Cavite is located about 10 miles from the bustling Manila and they have still managed to maintain their unique funeral ceremony customs. 

Tree burials are where the person who expects their time is limited will go and select the tree of their choice. Once the tree is selected and the person’s days are numbered, a small shelter is built near the tree for them to live in. When they pass, they are entombed upright into the selected tree.

Hanging Coffin

In the Sagada region of the Philippines, coffins are often hung off the sides of cliffs or on the walls of high-up caves. The elderly or sick craft their own caskets by hand if they are able and once they have moved on, they are placed in the casket they created and hung high. They are placed next to their ancestors and loved ones as high off the ground as possible. This is because the native people believe that the higher the dead are to heaven, the easier their journey will be. This is a tradition that has been performed for thousands for years and will likely continue for years to come. 

Fantasy Coffins

Ghana is a country in Africa where people have taken to a funeral ceremony called fantasy coffins. Fantasy coffins are unique coffins that help to represent who the person was in their life. For example, someone who was a fisherman their whole life may choose to be buried in a fish coffin. Or someone who had a love for books and novels may choose to be buried in a book-shaped coffin. These are fun and lighthearted ways to memorialize and celebrate the life of the dearly departed.

Bohlender Funeral Chapel

We hope that you learned something new from today’s blog and got valuable insight into other culture’s funeral ceremony customs. If you would like to learn more about the funeral services we offer here at Bohlender Funeral Chapel in Fort Collins, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We are a family-owned funeral home with a passion for helping people in any way we can. We offer invaluable healing experiences for you and your family through our cremation service, burial service, funeral flowers, and much more.

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