Desert Island Discs
Every now and then something resonates with what we do. Today there was one of those moments on Radio 4's Desert Island Discs when it featured the acclaimed garden designer Dan Pearson.
Listening to Dan Pearson describe his approach to his wild style of garden design had so many common threads with the way we approach the natural burial. While he was talking I noted down some of the words and phrases he used:
“A place of escape and a place of immersion; somewhere to be yourself completely with an enormous amount of freedom – a place where you feel happiest. A tranquil escape from the clutter and hubbub – I let things go almost to the brink of being lost.”
About music in the garden, he said “I prefer to hear the call of a wood-pigeon, the sound of seeds pinging out of their pods.”
Having designed a garden for Maggie’s Centre for cancer support in West London, he spent time there with people who were experiencing his garden. Moments are precious:
“Seeing blossom swelling, then popping, then dropping and then petals falling. Time becomes very precious; it is viewed through the way things grow through the seasons.”
"...to be transported into a place that feels free from their immediate issues. Users have said that they are taken away from themselves. The gardens allow them to continue, simply to continue and take one step at a time.”
These are the emotions and objectives we have towards the landscapes we choose for our natural burial grounds. They cannot be simply fields – there needs to be a sense of place, something special about them, something that feels right. We hope we achieve this and that families who choose our natural settings find solace and comfort from doing so.
We recently came across a blog post on www.theconversation.com, posted by Robert John Young, Professor of Wildlife Conservation at Salford University.
The blog post is an exploration through today's funeral options and their environmental impact. Cremation and traditional burial are of course discussed, as are the more contemporary options of sky burial, burial at sea, and woodland burials.
It is a personal reflection of the choices people must make when a parent has left no preferences. It also highlights people's growing inclination to choose something more environmentally friendly, moving away from ordinary, conventional affairs.
However, although we enjoyed his account and the pros and cons it addresses, we felt the need to set the facts straight relating to burial and global warming. So to clarify this, and the other factors to consider when choosing what to do with your or a relative's mortal remains, here's our table:
Click the table to enlarge.
Find Professor Robert John Young's blog post here - be sure to read the comments:
Stories and thoughts from the Leedam camp.
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