Which Is Better: Burial Or Cremation?

Burial is the traditional and most common method of funeral arrangement that most people choose to do today. However, there are a growing number of people who are opting for cremation because it appears that this funeral arrangement has some advantages over the traditional method. But which is better – burial or cremation? Just keep on reading because this blog will show you which of the two is better. This knowledge will be helpful if you are suddenly faced with a situation where you are forced to determine whether burial or cremation is best in your situation.

The Pros and Cons of Burial

An article titled “Burial” published in the online portal of Ancient History Encyclopedia revealed that human beings have been burying their dead since 100,000 years ago. That article also indicated that the oldest grave that was uncovered was in Europe and the approximate date is 29,000 years ago. This practice was carried over by all sorts of human society down to our time today. People have practiced burial for many reasons. Some do it for religious reasons while some practice it because burning the dead is somewhat loathsome to them. For instance, there are some Jews and some Christian religions who believe that both body and soul are still connected even after death. To them, burning the body will also harm the soul.


One of the advantages of burial is the opportunity for the remaining family members and close friends to have a physical location for visiting the dead. People derive some emotional benefit when they visit the dead during his or her birth or death anniversary. Burial also gives people the opportunity to practice their religion. The gravesite also provides a permanent memorial to the deceased. A family cemetery plot also provides a place for the recently dead to be buried among his or her loved ones. These are some of the most prominent advantages and benefits of burying the dead.


But there are also some disadvantages to burial. One of the most obvious ones is the high cost. The cost of burying the dead has been steadily rising over the years. It is now more expensive to bury the dead compared to what it costs ten years ago. Prices of cemetery lots have kept pace with the rising prices of residential lots. On top of that, the costs of funeral services and related funeral arrangements have also been rising. Another disadvantage is the paper works involved in burying the dead. You will be required to produce or furnish the right documents to bury the dead. And that does not just include securing the death certificate, but a whole slew of papers required for the funeral services and the cemetery lot.


The Pros and Cons of Cremation

Burning the dead or cremation was also practiced by the ancients thousands of years ago. Wikipedia says that the archeological record shows the earliest proof of cremation dates back to 20,000 years ago. The proof is the partly cremated body that was unearthed at Lake Mungo, Australia which was consequently called the Mungo Lady. Fast forward to our time, cremation seems to be growing in popularity nowadays since many people are opting for this type of funeral arrangement. It goes to show that this practice is slowly being accepted by modern humans.


One of the biggest advantages of cremation is its inexpensive cost. Compared to the traditional burial, the cost of cremations is just about 20 to 30 percent. In other words, if the cost of burying the dead ranges from $5,000 to $9,000,  the cost of cremation will only be $1,000 to $6,000. So, if you are looking to cut your funeral costs, your best option is cremation. The total expenses will depend on the type of services you may want aside from the cremation services itself. Other advantages of this practice include the fact that you can bring home the remains of the dead or you can opt to bury it in a cemetery lot.


However, there are also some disadvantages to cremation. There will be some family members who may not want to burn the dead since it goes against their religious beliefs. Another disadvantage is that there is no formal place or setting where family members can visit the dead. In some cremation services, a formal funeral service is not held which contributes to a lack of closure.


The best way to determine whether burial or cremation is the best for your situation is to ask the advice of people who have experienced both types of services. With their inputs, you will be able to assess which of the two is best in your current situation.

4 replies
  1. Gerty Gift
    Gerty Gift says:

    I thought it was interesting that you mentioned that cremation will only cost about $1,000-6,000 as opposed to $5,000-9,000. That is a really big difference and it can really make a big difference on families who don’t have much. I can see why this would be a great benefit to others.

  2. Millie Hue
    Millie Hue says:

    Our grandfather just died yesterday, and we have been planning for his memorial service since he is a veteran. We plan to honor him for what he has done to the country and to our family. However, we are having a hard time on deciding whether to get him cremated or buried since the family is split in half about this. It appears that it’s a lot cheaper to get his body cremated because, like you said, it is 20 to 30 percent less than the traditional way. I might have to suggest this since we do not have that much money for the traditional way. Thanks!

  3. John
    John says:

    I didn’t know cremation was cheaper than burial. That sounds like a good option for people that don’t want to burden their families. I’m pre-planning my funeral so that my family won’t have to worry about that.

  4. Ellen H.
    Ellen H. says:

    I like that you pointed out that burial will allow your loved ones to still be able to visit you when you die because there will be a physical location alloted for you. My husband and I are planning to pre-plan our funeral. We are both afraid that our loved ones might forget about us when we die, so we’d like to make sure that there will be an area in the cemetery where our family can gather to remember how we exist in their lives. Thanks!

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