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Thread: How to turn into a tree

  1. #1

    How to turn into a tree

    found this today. Thought it was an interesting idea.
    What are your thoughts on such a concept.

    http://xposethereal.com/health/how-t...r-you-die.html
    Humbly,
    Seiryu

  2. #2
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Looks like a real lucrative twist for War d's

    Sent from my Note 2 using Tapatalk4
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  3. #3
    Hi Seiryu,

    Thanks for sharing!
    You breathe in air that was produced by a tree and the tree "breathes" in air that was produced by your lungs.
    I think we could already consider ourselves to be one organism.

    What about the urine we produce everyday? It will go back to the hydrological cycle. Eventually, it will become rain. Perhaps rain that falls on your lawn? It becomes part of your lawn.
    When you mow, you mow yourself. When you breathe, you breathe yourself.
    Things appear to be different, but actually they are one. Different, but not separate.
    When you die, you still are yourself. Just different manifestation(s).

    No need to plant anything - you are everything anyway.

    Gassho,

    Timo
    Last edited by Daitetsu; 01-17-2014 at 11:19 AM.
    no thing needs to be added

  4. #4
    Senior Member Myosha's Avatar
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    Hello,

    Nice.

    Much better than my Manhattan friend whose father requested that his ashes be tossed into his favorite Hudson River. Standing at the rail next to the river my friend solemnly opened the urn to pour the ashes into the water. While whispering, "Goodbye,Dad", the wind changed and blew all the ashes back onto my friend's clothing.

    Not being fazed,my friend energetically brushed his sleeves saying, "GoodBYE Dad! *brush,brush* "GoodBYE Dad!!. . . .


    Gassho,
    Myosha
    Practice with humility, respect all beings, avoid attachments, give rise to prajńa from your own awareness, put an end to delusions - Hui-neng

  5. #5
    Senior Member Entai's Avatar
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    Seiryu,
    I tend to agree with Timo.
    Quote Originally Posted by Daitetsu View Post
    No need to plant anything - you are everything anyway.
    -Timo
    However, most funeral arrangements, etc. are done for the benefit of those grieving. So, if it comforts someone's heart, I say why not?

    Gassho,
    Entai / BIll

    Entai (Bill)
    "Be kind - for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle" - Plato

  6. #6
    Hi Entai,


    However, most funeral arrangements, etc. are done for the benefit of those grieving. So, if it comforts someone's heart, I say why not?
    Absolutely!
    For someone non-Buddhist the thought of becoming a tree can be very comforting indeed!


    Gassho,

    Daitetsu/Timo
    no thing needs to be added

  7. #7
    Senior Member TimF's Avatar
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    Not being fazed,my friend energetically brushed his sleeves saying, "GoodBYE Dad! *brush,brush* "GoodBYE Dad!!. . . .
    Love it!!!!

    Gassho,
    Tim

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Daitetsu View Post
    Hi Seiryu,

    Thanks for sharing!
    You breathe in air that was produced by a tree and the tree "breathes" in air that was produced by your lungs.
    I think we could already consider ourselves to be one organism.
    Yes, yes, we are already, now and before we were born, the soil and air and tree. No need to become those.

    In fact, we are ... already right now ... the metal and plastic and wood of our store bought casket, the water and waves of the burial at sea ... the hungry birds for a Tibetan sky burial ... the sky and fire of cremation. Now, then, ever so and ever was.

    That being said, yes, funerals are so much about the hearts of the grieving family and friends. So, whatever speaks to them can be fine.

    Also, a bio-degradable pot and seed seems nicer for the environment of this fragile planet than all that metal and plastic, or all that cremation smoke. Not a bad idea.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  9. #9
    I spread my father's ashes in a beautiful mountain in Utah. As I was doing so, a gust of wind caused a change of direction where I was dispersing his ashes and some of them wound up in my lungs and stomach. I inhaled and ate my dad! :-[

    Gassho, Jishin
    治 Ji (Healing)
    心​ Shin (Heart-Mind)

  10. #10
    As was mentioned, funerals are for those families left behind. And this, to me, is a beautiful way for those family and friends to stay connected to their love ones in a more organic fashion. Seeing a breathing living tree as opposed to a grave stone or ashes.
    Humbly,
    Seiryu

  11. #11
    This is a wonderful idea I feel ... there are a couple funeral homes that I know of that also planet a tree in your honour when you pass. A beautiful expression. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  12. #12
    Hi Seiryu,

    Quote Originally Posted by Seiryu View Post
    As was mentioned, funerals are for those families left behind. And this, to me, is a beautiful way for those family and friends to stay connected to their love ones in a more organic fashion. Seeing a breathing living tree as opposed to a grave stone or ashes.
    I agree with you. Sorry if I gave the impression of thinking otherwise.
    I just wanted to show another perspective.

    Gassho,

    Daitetsu
    no thing needs to be added

  13. #13
    Hi again,

    Just one thing I'd like to add.
    IMHO it is also important to respect the last wish(es) of the one who died.
    My parents have told me how they want things to be handled when they die, and I will respect their wishes.
    Even if they wanted to have a Catholic funeral (which they don't) I'd accept it.

    But I guess that's for each one to decide personally.

    Gassho,

    Daitetsu
    no thing needs to be added

  14. #14
    I will say now what I would like, just in case. No fancy Buddhist funeral for me with guys in funny hats and expensive flower arrangements.





    I told my wife to take me to the cheapest local crematorium, put half my ashes in the back yard and half on Tsukuba Mountain.

    I hope some of you guys, if around, would Chant the Heart Sutra, then sit a day of Zazen with people joining in all around the world.

    Then, have a party, eat something, maybe have a drink (if one drinks, and only in moderation) ... and get on with life. Hang a photo of me someplace, but let the memory fade away with time.

    Gassho, Jundo
    Last edited by Jundo; 01-18-2014 at 03:26 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    . I hope some of you guys, if around, would Chant the Heart Sutra, then sit a day of Zazen with people joining in all around the world.
    For sure, I will be there and I will some tea and crumpets as well. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Myosha's Avatar
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    Hello,

    WHY WAIT?


    Gassho,
    Myosha
    Practice with humility, respect all beings, avoid attachments, give rise to prajńa from your own awareness, put an end to delusions - Hui-neng

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Myosha View Post
    Hello,

    WHY WAIT?


    Gassho,
    Myosha
    No no not yet! Future plans ... So make sure you get the calendar for the year 2075 because Jundo is going to live forever! =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  18. #18
    I thought Zen Masters are immortal - this practice must have at least one purpose, right?

    OK, seriously, I don't want to think about that day right now (or other people's day X). Although death is an illusion, it still makes me sad.

    Gassho,

    Daitetsu
    no thing needs to be added

  19. #19
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post


    Then, have a party, eat something, maybe have a drink (if one drinks, and only in moderation) ... and get on with life. Hang a photo of me someplace, but let the memory fade away with time.

    Gassho, Jundo
    Jundo, I don't think it will be that easy to just get on with life. You would be missed very much!!! But, hopefully, that will be years away from now.

    Gassho,
    Treena

  20. #20
    When I die, I wish my ashes be brewed in tea for all to drink....lol..
    But I agree with Jundo there.
    A funeral, in my opinion, should celebrate the Life, not mourn the passing.
    Humbly,
    Seiryu

  21. #21
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seiryu View Post
    When I die, I wish my ashes be brewed in tea for all to drink....lol..
    But I agree with Jundo there.
    A funeral, in my opinion, should celebrate the Life, not mourn the passing.
    Ahh, that's....hilarious, but creepy

    I have a fear of fire, the thought of being cremated is quite disturbing to me. I wish to be buried as I lived, with simplicity. No fancy funeral, nothing religious, no huge flower arrangements, just the people that I was honoured to share my life with, gathered together to celebrate my life, comfort each other.

    Gassho,
    Joyo

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Joyo View Post
    Ahh, that's....hilarious, but creepy

    I have a fear of fire, the thought of being cremated is quite disturbing to me. I wish to be buried as I lived, with simplicity. No fancy funeral, nothing religious, no huge flower arrangements, just the people that I was honoured to share my life with, gathered together to celebrate my life, comfort each other.

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    Simply Life. Simple Death.
    Circle completed.
    Never having ended at all.

    One thing I appreciated greatly and learn a lot from the time I was with Tibetan Buddhism is there meditations on Death.
    And one thing they practice in their death meditations is visualizations of your own death. From sickness all the way to either being buried or cremated. Although it sound grim, it gave me the chance to see exactly how much fear and resistance I still had regarding death. Sometimes it helps to look right into that which disturbs us greatly.

    Just some of my irrelevant ramblings....
    Humbly,
    Seiryu

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Seiryu View Post
    Simply Life. Simple Death.
    Circle completed.
    Never having ended at all.

    One thing I appreciated greatly and learn a lot from the time I was with Tibetan Buddhism is there meditations on Death.
    And one thing they practice in their death meditations is visualizations of your own death. From sickness all the way to either being buried or cremated. Although it sound grim, it gave me the chance to see exactly how much fear and resistance I still had regarding death. Sometimes it helps to look right into that which disturbs us greatly.

    Just some of my irrelevant ramblings....
    I like to sit Shikantaza sometimes in cemeteries, and that mind of Shikantaza is always with me when among the mourners at a funeral or while waiting for grandpa to burn up at the crematorium. We just sit in/with/as what is.

    Case 55 from the Blue Cliff Record

    Dogo and Zen-gen went to a house to show sympathy at a funeral. Zen-gen hit the coffin and asked, "Alive or dead?" Dogen replied, "I won't say alive, I won't say dead." Zen-gen demanded, " Why won't you say?" Dogo repeated, "I won't say." On their way home, Zen-gen cried, "Tell me right now teacher, alive or dead; if you don't tell me, I will hit you." Dogo said, "You may hit me, but I won't say." Zen-gen hit him.

    Later after Dogo died, Zen-gen went to Seki-so and told him the foregoing story. Seki-so said, "I won't say alive, and I won't say dead." Zen-gen said, " Why won't you say?" Seki-so repeated, "I won't say, I won't say." At these words Zen-gen came to awakening.

    One day, Zen-gen took a hoe into the Buddha hall and crossed back and forth, from east to west and west to east. Seki-so asked, "What are you doing?" Zen-gen said," I am looking for my teacher's relics." Seki-so said, "Vast waves spread far and wide, foaming billows flood the skies - what relics of our late master are you looking for?"

    Zen-gen said, "It is a way of repaying the kindness of my old teacher." Fu of T'ai Yuan said, "The late masters relics are still present. "
    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  24. #24
    Senior Member Oheso's Avatar
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    only saps buy vowels

  25. #25
    Senior Member Troy's Avatar
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    If I am turn in to a tree, that means someday after I am forgotten I could end up being a piece of furniture or a box pencils. Hmmm, I am not sure how I feel about that, lol.

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Troy View Post
    If I am turn in to a tree, that means someday after I am forgotten I could end up being a piece of furniture or a box pencils. Hmmm, I am not sure how I feel about that, lol.
    You are already all the furniture and a box a pencils. Paper too.

    Thich Nhat Hanh has this lovely description of what he calls "interbeing" ...

    “If you are a poet, you will see clearly that there is a cloud floating in this sheet of paper. Without a cloud, there will be no rain; without rain, the trees cannot grow; and without trees, we cannot make paper. The cloud is essential for the paper to exist. If the cloud is not here, the sheet of paper cannot be here either. So we can say that the cloud and the paper inter-are. “Interbeing” is a word that is not in the dictionary yet, but if we combine the prefix “inter-“ with the verb “to be,” we have a new verb, inter-be.

    If we look into this sheet of paper even more deeply, we can see the sunshine in it. Without sunshine, the forest cannot grow. In fact, nothing can grow without sunshine. And so, we know that the sunshine is also in this sheet of paper. The paper and the sunshine inter-are. And if we continue to look, we can see the logger who cut the tree and brought it to the mill to be transformed into paper. And we see wheat. We know the logger cannot exist without his daily bread, and therefore the wheat that became his bread is also in this sheet of paper. The logger’s father and mother are in it too. When we look in this way, we see that without all of these things, this sheet of paper cannot exist.

    Looking even more deeply, we can see ourselves in this sheet of paper too. This is not difficult to see, because when we look at a sheet of paper, it is part of our perception. Your mind is in here and mine is also. So we can say that everything is in here with this sheet of paper. We cannot point out one thing that is not here – time, space, the earth, the rain, the minerals in the soil, the sunshine, the cloud, the river, the heat. Everything co-exists with this sheet of paper. That is why I think the word inter-be should be in the dictionary. “To be” is to inter-be. We cannot just be by ourselves alone. We have to inter-be with every other thing. This sheet of paper is, because everything else is.

    Suppose we try to return one of the elements to its source. Suppose we return the sunshine to the sun. Do you think that this sheet of paper will be possible? No, without sunshine nothing can be. And if we return the logger to his mother, then we have no sheet of paper either. The fact is that this sheet of paper is made up only of “non-paper” elements. And if we return these non-paper elements to their sources, then there can be no paper at all. Without non-paper elements, like mind, logger, sunshine and so on, there will be no paper. As thin as this sheet of paper is, it contains everything in the universe in it.”
    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 01-21-2014 at 04:30 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  27. #27
    Senior Member Troy's Avatar
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    Thanks Jundo, I like that quote :-)

  28. #28
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Thank you all for your interest in this thread.

    To supplement my initial reaction to this thread which was brought on by memories of late night sessions as a funeral services student twenty-five years ago. I'd like to also share some further thoughts. We would debate eco/bio methods of handling/treating dead human remains. And, we studied the governing regulations regarding the interface between cemeteries and funeral homes. Conflicts of interest abound and to understand them better we need to separate the funeralization process from the disposal means.
    Regardless of whether paper, trees or sunshine exist. The fact remains that we have biodegradable bodies that need a place to decompose. So, for eons there have been burial rites. The wooden coffin (no metal handles or hinges) sufficed for the longest time and everyone went along with it to the point where it is thought of as traditional behavior. Until of course, we began to appreciate ramifications to land usage as a resource. So, confronted with the alternative of cremation, slowly the tradition begins to change. The use of tree memorials seems to placate the supporters of the Traditional Funeral. Trees are important, They convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. Without there would be no life on our planet. Finally, we have a solution that utilizes the cremation left overs (ashes) as direct food for the tree and funeral director and cemetery operator can perhaps share in the profits. It should be pointed out that the psychological trauma of "picking up the ashes" left Funeral homes with the huge problem of storage; racks and racks of 'cremains' in plastic urns line the basement halls of many a funeral home, waiting for some family member (who has likely passed on themselves) to pick them up..

    Creatively packaged with a reasonable price point, it should sell well. I wish Ward's every success. Owing to their being long standing members of the established funeral industry in the Greater Toronto Area, I am quite sure this strategy has be well thought out. (and I'm also willing to wager that Bates Caskets also have an investment in this venture.)

    gassho, Shokai
    Last edited by Shokai; 01-21-2014 at 01:26 PM.
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  29. #29
    Rebirth. Though I imagine whether or not one go through this Bio Urn, we will all be reborn in that way, become the air, the water, the earth, the fire. part of many living things, maybe one day return back to the ancient universe and be part of a star. I dont know...

    Thank you for sharing.

    Gassho
    Victor.

  30. #30
    Ufff!! I love the idea.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Gassho.

    kb
    Dancing between stillness and motion I find peace.

  31. #31
    Senior Member Nengyo's Avatar
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    1) This is beautiful. I think I will put it in my will.

    2) I'm also with Jundo in that I don't need a fancy ceremony. However, fancy hats will be encouraged at my service and my ashes should be thrown out of an airplane over a nice drop zone
    Try not to be a jerk-- one of the Buddhas

  32. #32
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    It's all good to wish your ashes to be tossed here or there but in deference to your surviving loved ones you should allow them to have a place to mourn; a place for remembrance.
    gassho, Shokai

    Sent from my Note 2 using Tapatalk4
    Last edited by Shokai; 01-23-2014 at 10:28 AM.
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  33. #33
    Shokai speaks from many decades experience as a funeral director.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Shokai View Post
    It's all good to wish your ashes to be tossed here or there but in deference to your surviving loved ones you should allow them to have a place to mourn; a place for remembrance.
    gassho, Shokai

    Sent from my Note 2 using Tapatalk4
    Thank you Shokai, this is a very important point! =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  35. #35
    Senior Member TimF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shokai View Post
    It's all good to wish your ashes to be tossed here or there but in deference to your surviving loved ones you should allow them to have a place to mourn; a place for remembrance.
    gassho, Shokai

    Sent from my Note 2 using Tapatalk4
    All the reason more to have mine shot to the moon. Then my friends and family would have no choice but to remember me!
    "The moment has priority". ~ Bon Haeng

  36. #36
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Sent from my Note 2 using Tapatalk4
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  37. #37
    Senior Member Nindo's Avatar
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    I would go for it, but it might freak out my husband. Also, there is the risk that the seed doesn't sprout, or the tree dies. Many saplings don't make it to tree stage. That would be a big disappointment for surviving loved ones.
    Actually I want my ashes buried without an urn. Make a hole, dump it in. Then whatever wants to grow will grow. Grass, weeds, flowers, veggies, all good

  38. #38
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nindo View Post
    I would go for it, but it might freak out my husband. Also, there is the risk that the seed doesn't sprout, or the tree dies. Many saplings don't make it to tree stage. That would be a big disappointment for surviving loved ones.
    Actually I want my ashes buried without an urn. Make a hole, dump it in. Then whatever wants to grow will grow. Grass, weeds, flowers, veggies, all good

    I like that idea!! This entire conversation sure does put life into perspective. Personally, I would like to have a place to go to mourn wherever my loved ones are buried, as Shokai said. But expensive tombstones and sunken earth where a coffin has been buried has always seemed so morbid to me. The thought of visiting a place where grass, weeds etc. etc. are just seems more comforting, more in tune with the ways things are supposed to be.

    Gassho,
    Treena

  39. #39
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Joyo;

    Sunken graves should no longer be a problem since most cemeteries now drop a fiberglass vault over the casket before closing the grave.
    (OR of course you can always purchase a $10K cement Wilber vault) But, I do know of many folks who have left/spread ashes in some quaint place where the deceased had claimed they wanted to be and now the surviving family members find in a real hardship to get back to that place.

    gassho, Shokai
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  40. #40
    I think the events that happen after ones death really only mean something to those who stay behind. I would have them do whatever helps them continue.

    Several funerals I attended were 'dictated' by the deceased, and most of them left the friends and relatives still in need of finding a way to cope. The ones that were put together by the relatives themselves served as a way of coping and actually opened the doors to their further lives again. It's a big difference.

    And if you do care about what happens with your remains after your death, you may as well trust your friends and relatives to do what they think would suit you best.

    I gave my wife the suggestion to play this message on my funeral, but only if my relatives feel it's right

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNfHU748SYQ


    gassho

    Vincent
    For a moment, nothing happened. Then, after a second or so, nothing continued to happen.

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