When considering the option of College Park cremations, it is interesting to look at the latest research on how cremations have traditionally been viewed in the United States and how – and why – Americans have changed in a fundamental way what they choose do with their remains after they die.
Traditionally, cremations were shunned by most Americans because of religious beliefs that it defiled the body, making it impossible for the person to be resurrected into an afterlife with God. This idea has been passed down since the time of Charlemagne, King of France and Holy Roman Emperor (742 AD – 814 AD). Since pre-Christians used fire both in their worship, often sacrificing their children in the process, and in their funeral rituals, Charlemagne wanted to distinguish Christianity from paganism, so he dictated that anyone who cremated a body would be executed.
Much of that stigma attached to cremations continued through the end of the 20th century. It seemed to take that long for rational, critically-thinking people to question the viability of the belief that cremations somehow eliminated the people being cremated from eternal life with God.
First, it implied that God’s power was limited, which is a critical problem for Christian believers. Second, people die with more regularity than we might realize in spontaneous fires, such as car fires, house fires, or wildfires, and their remains are reduced to ashes (the same process that happens in cremations), so applying logic means these people are also ineligible for an afterlife with God.
Once the ideas surrounding cremations were unwrapped and dispelled, more people in the United States began to choose cremations as the way they wanted their remains to be handled after death.
In both 2016 and 2017, the number of cremations surpassed the number of burials in the United States. There are several reasons why the number of cremations is increasing in American.
The first reason is practical. Cremations are less expensive than burials. Financially, most people either can’t or are unwilling to take on the additional financial expenses associated with traditional burials, so they are opting for cremations instead.
The second reason is that American society, as a whole, is moving away from established traditions, and that includes organized religion and traditional funeral rituals, which include funeral services and cemetery burials. With celebrations of life replacing the traditional and more somber honor of the dead, there is less worry about what happens with people’s remains after death.
The third reason why cremations are surpassing traditional burials is that cemeteries are running out of space and, often, cremations are the only option available.
A fourth reason why cremations are on the rise in the United States is because many Americans are concerned about the environment and the impact of our actions on it. Cremations are considered to be environmentally-friendly, while traditional burials are not considered to be as good for the environment.
There are many reasons why the cremations statistics in the United States show a steady rise in American’s preferences for how their remains should be disposed of, but these highlight the most important ones.
If you want more statistics about College Park cremations, our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. can give you the information you need. You can see us personally at our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.