When I was in Taiwan, we visited my uncle at the cemetery. This was unlike any cemetery I've ever seen, and it was kind of the most amazing cemetery I have ever been to. I know that's weird to say about such a place, but not only was it a peaceful paradise for the resting souls and their loved ones who visit them, but it also is no doubt the future of cemeteries.
Taiwan is a small island, only slightly larger than the state of Massachusetts, with a population of 23.5 million people. In case you're curious, Massachusetts has only 6.8 million people. So, you have to wonder how they fit not only all the living people, but also all the deceased. I oft wonder that about the global population. Won't we eventually run out of space to bury our dead?
Well, the Taiwanese have come up with a great solution. I'm not sure if they started this trend or if someone else did, but this is the first time and place I've ever seen such a cemetery. Basically, it's a giant, beautiful mountainside park, and if you didn't know you were at a cemetery, you'd think you were just strolling through a lovely and well-groomed park.
someone else might be, but the beauty in that was summed up by my aunt's words. As she pointed to the area his ashes were placed (just to the right of the big boulder my grandma is sitting in front of) and explained how this works, she said, "Now your uncle has a bunch of new friends." It doesn't matter what your religion is, who you are, where you're from, or what you look like, you become part of the earth and whether you believe in heaven or something else, you enter the next life with a bunch of new friends. As we stood their and paid our respects, I imagined a bunch of souls, finally at peace, having a festive picnic--dancing, laughing, and enjoying the view.
We brought flowers, but you can't leave them there; however, while we were there, we made the space our own. My aunt is Buddhist, so she also brought some fruits, and sweets as an offering. As you can see, it almost looks like my grandma is actually having a picnic.
I felt a great peace knowing my uncle is in a good place. Sometimes at cemeteries, they become very sad, particularly when they aren't well tended to. So, seeing this place was quite a relief and gives the family a sense of serenity.
It's a wonderful way to deal with overpopulation, while also creating a great atmosphere for something that is usually so morbid. It's a neat thought that when you die, your body becomes part of the earth so that in a way you are always there on earth with your loved ones and generations to come, and at the same time your soul can enter heaven meeting a few new folks along the way.
Of course, the trick for loved ones still on earth is to remember where your deceased is buried; but there are markings to help guide you and remind you. In this case, I believe there were numbers on boulders, as well as each boulder having some kind of saying or quote.
What do you think? Is this the future?
BIG LOVE & HUGS