When anthropologists research early human civilizations, and even our evolutionary ancestors, they often look for signs of burial customs and funeral rites. It turns out, burying your loved ones, often with ceremonial and memorial keepsakes, is one of the earliest marks of intelligence.
For thousands of years, human beings have had elaborate, often extravagant funeral customs, like the Egyptians and their truly massive pyramids. But in 2015, a growing number of Americans are opting out of casket funerals in large numbers. For a variety of reasons, more and more people are requesting cremation after they pass. This emerging practice is leading to the creation of new customs, like the plethora of memorial keepsakes for ashes people purchase while in mourning. You’ve probably heard of cremation urns for ashes, but there are plenty of other ash containers and unique sympathy gifts for sale today.
Here’s some you’ve probably never heard of…
1. Memorial Key Chains
Many online companies now provide small containers designed to be clipped onto your keys. Usually, these small keepsakes for ashes are small steel cylinders, designed to be discrete and lightweight.
2. Space Burials
While some people want to keep a part of their loved ones close at hand or in their pocket, others want to send a piece of them into outer space. That’s why a variety of companies now offer to send special cremation urns into a low-earth orbit. Soon, you will even be able to send these special memorial keepsakes for ashes to the surface of the moon itself!
3. The Ghost Urn
Designer Anna Marinenko designed a special urn that resembles nothing so much as an old-time cartoon ghost. The design is meant to appear friendly and gentle rather than grim and macabre. Marinenko says the ghost urn is a modern, modular design that’s perfect for people with a spooky sense of humor.
While some of these keepsakes for ashes might seem peculiar, they reflect the true diversity of the human spirit, and the lengths we will go to honor the people we love the most. Great references here.