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Athiest Last Wishes


Kurari
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Recently my mother and I were discussing funerals after an obit notice of an aquaintance we knew who has passed on. My mother who is an agnostic is not making any plans for her remains other than the desire for cremation. She said if we want a funeral we can, or we can just get her cremated and stick her urn in the back of a closet for all she is going to care. I don't think she's even bothered to budget the money for the bare minimum. She said, "It's not going to matter to me one whit. Do what you need to do to take care of yourself during that time."

 

Personally, I have no interest in funerals, and I'm not interested in buying an expensive peice of pottery to hold dirt, so I'm likely going to be shelling out for the cremation and asking any other family members what they want to do. If they leave it up to me, I'll just have whoever I hire to dispose of my mother's remains as cheaply as possible. No headstone, no nothing. I've never felt the point in visiting or talking to gravestones. A jar of dirt is not my mother and I have no connection to such a thing.

 

I think sometime this year I'll see about making my own will and making sure that taking care of my personal affairs is as painless as possible for my loved ones, but do the same thing as my mother. Budget for a cremation, and tell people to do whatever they want from there. I have no problems at the idea of being tossed in a dumpster if that's what they want.

 

I know this is kind of a morbid subject, but what sorts of steps do you want your family members to take when you die?

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I know this is kind of a morbid subject, but what sorts of steps do you want your family members to take when you die?

 

 

I decided to draw up a both a Last Will and a Living Will after seeing what happened at my mother's funeral. I was beyond disgusted at the things people got up to say and I know my mom would have been too. All my family knew how much she hated Christianity, yet my one brother (a preacher) used the funeral as an opportunity to preach about salvation telling everyone its not too late for them to repent and turn to the lord. He proceeded to go on in gory detail about what happens to unbelievers in the afterlife. My other brother (a deacon) went on about how he knew my mom still believed in her heart that Jesus was lord, she was just angry with him. I can't think of anything more disrespectful. Of course, they didn't much like the eulogy I wrote and didn't even want me to speak at my own mother's funeral! The disrespectful bastards talked and made snide remarks when I was talking because I focused on my mom and not their god. Gee, I thought that is what a eulogy was supposed to be, about the person who died!

 

Anyways, don't like the funeral parlors and the whole death industry. It is way too steeped in Christianity. In my living will, I have what some people told me was unusual and overboard, I have that if I am end up a hospital that is run by religious people I am to be moved to a secular hospital regardless of my condition. I do not want to be pestered with hospital preachers, nurses praying for me, or doctors hoping for miracles when I am on my death bed. I have that if I die, my body not to be sent to a funeral parlor, it is to be used for medical science. It grosses people out, but personally, I feel this is very much in line with my views on life and death. And I feel that this is a far better alternative to ending up in funeral home and getting embalmed, and my family getting ripped off royally with the cost of it all. I don't want to be buried in a church graveyard like all my family (except my Mom, at least she got her wish on that). And I have made it abundantly clear that I do not want any sort of Christian service and that to do so would be highly disrespectful.

 

Now unfortunately, I can't really control what happens when I die, but I can hope.

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I have no wish for my departure to impose a burden on those nearest to me, so I will provide for my "final expenses" in advance. No viewing, no coffin, nothing beyond the bare legal requirements in terms of cremation. Scatter my ashes, flush them, or toss them on the compost heap.

 

I like the service provided for Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter: a bunch of friends camping in the outback, swapping Steve-o stories around a campfire. If my friends and family want to do that, I'll spring for the beer. The only thing I like about most funerals is the food and friends.

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I know this is kind of a morbid subject, but what sorts of steps do you want your family members to take when you die?

 

 

I decided to draw up a both a Last Will and a Living Will after seeing what happened at my mother's funeral. I was beyond disgusted at the things people got up to say and I know my mom would have been too. All my family knew how much she hated Christianity, yet my one brother (a preacher) used the funeral as an opportunity to preach about salvation telling everyone its not too late for them to repent and turn to the lord. He proceeded to go on in gory detail about what happens to unbelievers in the afterlife. My other brother (a deacon) went on about how he knew my mom still believed in her heart that Jesus was lord, she was just angry with him. I can't think of anything more disrespectful. Of course, they didn't much like the eulogy I wrote and didn't even want me to speak at my own mother's funeral! The disrespectful bastards talked and made snide remarks when I was talking because I focused on my mom and not their god. Gee, I thought that is what a eulogy was supposed to be, about the person who died!

 

Anyways, don't like the funeral parlors and the whole death industry. It is way too steeped in Christianity. In my living will, I have what some people told me was unusual and overboard, I have that if I am end up a hospital that is run by religious people I am to be moved to a secular hospital regardless of my condition. I do not want to be pestered with hospital preachers, nurses praying for me, or doctors hoping for miracles when I am on my death bed. I have that if I die, my body not to be sent to a funeral parlor, it is to be used for medical science. It grosses people out, but personally, I feel this is very much in line with my views on life and death. And I feel that this is a far better alternative to ending up in funeral home and getting embalmed, and my family getting ripped off royally with the cost of it all. I don't want to be buried in a church graveyard like all my family (except my Mom, at least she got her wish on that). And I have made it abundantly clear that I do not want any sort of Christian service and that to do so would be highly disrespectful.

 

Now unfortunately, I can't really control what happens when I die, but I can hope.

 

 

Scarlett, the whole funeral bit is only for the living anyway!! I don't care what they do or say when I die--I won't be there--even if I'm given the opportunity to "watch" it (incase we as spirits can roam or do what we want)--I've decided that it I won't, don't want to know or see!!!

But I am sorry that your family did not respect your mother's change of heart and didn't respect you either. I spoke at my grandfather's eulogy and I talked about my love for him not for god, etc. Anyway, It is a good idea to write down your wishes just incase the people you leave behind respect your wishes!! :twitch:

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Scarlett, the whole funeral bit is only for the living anyway!! I don't care what they do or say when I die--I won't be there--even if I'm given the opportunity to "watch" it (incase we as spirits can roam or do what we want)--I've decided that it I won't, don't want to know or see!!!

 

Yes, I've heard that before about funerals being for the living. I can understand the logic in that. I also understand that a lot of religious people take comfort in religious funerals for their loved ones; but what about when the person who died wasn't religious at all or had a different religion other then Christianity? What about when the person who died hated Christianity with a passion, would it still be a good idea to give them a Christian funeral? Maybe I am crazy, but I believe my funeral should be about me and if there is any service for me should reflect my views; not what people think my views should have been. Even though I have everything written down and in legal documents, there is no way I can enforce it when I am gone. I can only hope for the best.

 

BTW: If I did have the chance to watch my own funeral after I died, I would. Granted, I'd more then likely get pissed off and wish I could slap someone silly. :HaHa: But, I believe when you're dead that's the end of the story, so my family don't have to worry about me haunting them.

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I know this is kind of a morbid subject, but what sorts of steps do you want your family members to take when you die?

 

 

I decided to draw up a both a Last Will and a Living Will after seeing what happened at my mother's funeral. I was beyond disgusted at the things people got up to say and I know my mom would have been too. All my family knew how much she hated Christianity, yet my one brother (a preacher) used the funeral as an opportunity to preach about salvation telling everyone its not too late for them to repent and turn to the lord. He proceeded to go on in gory detail about what happens to unbelievers in the afterlife. My other brother (a deacon) went on about how he knew my mom still believed in her heart that Jesus was lord, she was just angry with him. I can't think of anything more disrespectful. Of course, they didn't much like the eulogy I wrote and didn't even want me to speak at my own mother's funeral! The disrespectful bastards talked and made snide remarks when I was talking because I focused on my mom and not their god. Gee, I thought that is what a eulogy was supposed to be, about the person who died!

 

Anyways, don't like the funeral parlors and the whole death industry. It is way too steeped in Christianity. In my living will, I have what some people told me was unusual and overboard, I have that if I am end up a hospital that is run by religious people I am to be moved to a secular hospital regardless of my condition. I do not want to be pestered with hospital preachers, nurses praying for me, or doctors hoping for miracles when I am on my death bed. I have that if I die, my body not to be sent to a funeral parlor, it is to be used for medical science. It grosses people out, but personally, I feel this is very much in line with my views on life and death. And I feel that this is a far better alternative to ending up in funeral home and getting embalmed, and my family getting ripped off royally with the cost of it all. I don't want to be buried in a church graveyard like all my family (except my Mom, at least she got her wish on that). And I have made it abundantly clear that I do not want any sort of Christian service and that to do so would be highly disrespectful.

 

Now unfortunately, I can't really control what happens when I die, but I can hope.

 

Scarlett, I think you've got it right. Medical science for my body is probably the best gift I could think of. I too don't want a service, but they should take the money from my policy and throw a party. I would hope, and I'm sure my brother will oblige, that he would play all the music I dug in my life. I have a few scrap books ( my box filed with shit like my first concert tickets, first gay bar match books... first pride magazines... stuff like that) that I made when I was recovering from Cancer. I even have some letters that my girlfriends wrote to me in high school. They should all listen to my music, look through the books, laugh, drink, and have a good time on me.

 

Hell I wish I could be there! :woohoo:

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Scarlett, I think you've got it right. Medical science for my body is probably the best gift I could think of. I too don't want a service, but they should take the money from my policy and throw a party. I would hope, and I'm sure my brother will oblige, that he would play all the music I dug in my life. I have a few scrap books ( my box filed with shit like my first concert tickets, first gay bar match books... first pride magazines... stuff like that) that I made when I was recovering from Cancer. I even have some letters that my girlfriends wrote to me in high school. They should all listen to my music, look through the books, laugh, drink, and have a good time on me.

 

Hell I wish I could be there! :woohoo:

 

 

See, that's more my idea of what a funeral should be, a party to celebrate the one who died. I would love to have all the people who knew me in my life set around a bonfire, listening to good music and drinking, reminiscing about my life and having a good time.

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I've never thought about the idea of donating one's own body to medical research. I wonder if that's a possibility? If so, I like it.

 

It's not like you'll be around to be bothered by being thrown into a freezer or cut into pieces..

 

Sounds just as viable as being thrown into a raging fire and cooked to a crisp.

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My family already have my explicit instructions, which include cremation, any kind of memorial service they wish excluding any religious trappings, no priests, no ministers, no relatives saying prayers, etc., and a simple marker stone matching my wife's, at our family cemetery. I am making a video, and for music I want my son and his friends to play some of my tunes.

 

I briefly considered asking that they play The Ashokan Farewell and/or Samuel Barber's Adagio For Strings, but these are too sad.

 

I have also secretly given my son permission to change any or all of these instructions as he wishes, as I won't know or care.

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I've never thought about the idea of donating one's own body to medical research. I wonder if that's a possibility? If so, I like it.

 

It's not like you'll be around to be bothered by being thrown into a freezer or cut into pieces..

 

Sounds just as viable as being thrown into a raging fire and cooked to a crisp.

 

 

Yeap, it's possible. What you do is find a local medical school or university and pre-register yourself. They usually give you a packet that covers all their procedures and how to have them notified in the event of your death. But you have to make sure that your corpse goes to there and not to a funeral home, because the funeral homes will embalme you and then the medical school won't take your body.

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What if all of one's relatives are very conservative xians who believe anything short of a traditional burial is sin on their part? Could they over-ride other arrangements and get me buried in their own church's cemetary? I guess like some of you said, when we're dead we're dead and won't care what happens. I have never thought about these things. I'm kinda busy just dealing with life and the living. I'm not even sure that anybody who knows me these days has any contact info for my family. (The card I carry is no longer current.) I have no idea what is done with such people (who have no family) when/if they end up dead in an accident or with a heart attack.

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If you will your body to science and you live near a university they will pick up the tab to get your body there, if you don't your family has to pick up the tab. If your body has had an autopsy, which is many times required, your body is no good, since it has no brain or any internal organs. Also, if you will your body to science, you run the risk of body brokers, cadavers and body parts are big business, or being used by the military for experiments.

 

If your body is unclaimed, a number of things can happen. If your body is in good condition, you can go to a university, see above, or cremated, or buried in a paupers grave. If they do find your family, your body is their property and, unless you have made other arrangements, they can do with you what they want.

 

Taph

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I want to donate the parts that work, and burn the rest that doesn't. Scatter the remaining ashes on the water, and throw a party in celebration of the person I was.

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Thanks, Taph. Not a very palatable topic but good to know. The way things stand at the moment, anything would be better than having my family "take care of me." Being gazed down upon by all those black-garbed solemn Mennonites and being used as an example of the educated atheist by those religious anti-intellectualists--that would be enough to make me turn in the grave once I got there.

 

I know this never happens these days but I'm thinking it would be a really neat trick to just sit up and say hello when they're walking by my coffin. In their funerals, the coffin is always set up in the middle of the churchyard for a final viewing and everybody present walks by for this final viewing. It can take the better part of an hour. Besides scaring the living daylights out of every last one of them, it would give them a theological enigma that would keep the bishop (and many others) from sleeping for many a night.

 

Miraculous healings and resurrections are supposed to happen only to the very righteous. Not that death has any distinctions when it comes to this kind of thing but they think it does. And that makes all the difference.

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If I were to donate my body it would go to The University of Tennesee Anthropology Research Facility AKA The Body Farm. However, people are dying to get in so there is long waiting list.

 

Body Donation Program

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If I were to donate my body it would go to The University of Tennesee Anthropology Research Facility AKA The Body Farm. However, people are dying to get in so there is long waiting list.

 

Body Donation Program

 

Oh! I carry a card in my wallet with words similar to that on it. I forget when and where, but I was at a place where the cards were pushed on people. Maybe at the office where you go to sign up for social security or something like that--it's something the Old Order Mennonites don't have so it was a new experience for me.

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Ruby,

 

It's a donor's card. If anything happens to you, a donor's card lets the medical staff know to keep your body harvestable for donation. However, your family still has to give permission for that to occur. Bummer, huh?

 

The Body Farm is the first of it's kind. Dr. William Bass, also an Ex-Christian, started the facility to determine decomposition rates of dead bodies. The information they have accumulated has solved lots of crimes. The forensic anthropology students learn about death in order to bring justice to victims of crimes.

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I see. Thanks for the info. At least I can now make an informed decision if ever I am in a situation where it is required. When I'm dead I won't know what they do to my body. I'm not even in the US so there is small chance an American university with a long waiting list would want just another old body. I would probably have to contract to die from a very unusual disease. A prof of mine who was near retirement said he had wanted to donate his body for something but he was told anyone over forty (?) isn't much good. This body of mine was forty years old quite some time ago. Might not be all bad to be buried in the cemetary of the church where I grew up. It's on the corner of the old homestead and there are some good memories there. Yeah, when I think of it in those terms it might be okay. Like I said, I'm kinda busy figuring out how to deal with life and the living. People tend to turn nice for the duration of a funeral.

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Since dying is expensive, I will provide for my cremation, but only the basics. Nothing fancy - as said, funerals are for the living. I don't mind my loved ones gathering to celebrate my life and mark my passing, only that they do it in a cheerful way.

 

Donate the useable parts, burn the ones that don't, and spread or bury them somewhere special. Life and living now are what I'm worried about.

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Build me a tomb. A big freakin' tomb. Like Grant's tomb but bigger, and more columns. And I want it carved out of obsidian. And I want a 30 foot tall obsidian obelisk coming out the center of it. This represents my 'dark chocolate' side that the chicks like. Oh, and gold cap the tippy top in 24 carat.

 

 

"A tomb worthy of Mordor"

 

 

Shawn

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Throw me in the ground, naked and unembalmed. Let nature eat me. That's all I care about, the rest is for those still living, so they should do whatever makes them feel best. I think my mom was kinda grossed out when I told her this once, but it's important to me. I should make it legal somewhere. I don't want that nasty stuff going into the environment. Cycles (such as me feeding little creatures) and a connection with nature mean so much to me, why would I want to screw that up in my final stage here on earth?

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Scarlett, I think you've got it right. Medical science for my body is probably the best gift I could think of. I too don't want a service, but they should take the money from my policy and throw a party. I would hope, and I'm sure my brother will oblige, that he would play all the music I dug in my life. I have a few scrap books ( my box filed with shit like my first concert tickets, first gay bar match books... first pride magazines... stuff like that) that I made when I was recovering from Cancer. I even have some letters that my girlfriends wrote to me in high school. They should all listen to my music, look through the books, laugh, drink, and have a good time on me.

 

Hell I wish I could be there! :woohoo:

 

 

See, that's more my idea of what a funeral should be, a party to celebrate the one who died. I would love to have all the people who knew me in my life set around a bonfire, listening to good music and drinking, reminiscing about my life and having a good time.

 

I agree with this too--I'd love a party- :woohoo: -or just even for my ashes to blow away in the wind from the top of a beautiful mountain. And yes before cremation I want to give my vital usuable parts to someone(s) who needs a transplant.

 

And Scarlett--I hear ya!! If any of my family's wishes were not carried out I would probably make a big stink!! I agree if you are not christian why have a christian funeral!

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