After a cremation, you can inter your loved one’s ashes in a columbarium, bury the ashes in a cemetery or keep the ashes. You can also opt to scatter the ashes. Here’s what you need to know about that option.
1. There Are Scatter Urns
If you decide to go forward with scattering, you may want to choose a scatter urn. This is a plastic container about the size of a tissue box. Because it’s only designed to hold the ashes temporarily, it is generally less sturdy but also less expensive than other types of urns. That may be something to consider if you’re trying to keep costs low.
2. There Is No Health Risk Associated With Handling Ashes
As long as a body has been cremated by a professional, the ashes are completely safe to handle. The cremation process involves very high temperatures that remove any potential germs or toxins. If you come into contact with the ashes during scattering, you can rest assured that you are safe.
3. Scattering Rules Vary From Place to Place
Before scattering ashes, it’s important to get permission. If you want to scatter ashes on private land, you need permission from the landowners, and for public land, you should contact the local council or other authorities. Unfortunately, without the right permission, you may face fines or other issues.
4. You Can Scatter at Sea Without a Permit
If you want to bury a body at sea, you need to get a permit, but you don’t need a permit to scatter ashes at sea. However, you shouldn’t just jump on a ferry and scatter ashes. You need permission from the operator of the vessel. You may even want to hire a vessel just for the purpose of scattering your loved one’s ashes.
5. You Can Combine a Memorial With Ashes Scattering
Some people opt to have a memorial service at their church or at the funeral home and then scatter the ashes separately. Others opt to combine the memorial with the scattering. Ultimately, you need to decide what works the best for you and your family.
One tradition that is growing in popularity is “beaching.” You and other loved ones spell out the name of the deceased in the sand. Then, you gently scatter the ashes into the sand and observe several moments of silence whilst the waves come in and gently wash away your loved one’s ashes. Rituals like that can be cathartic for many people.
6. It’s Important to Note the Wind Direction
Once you find a place to scatter your loved one’s ashes, it’s critical to work with the wind. Whether you are on land or at sea, look at which direction the wind is coming from, and make sure you attempt to scatter the ashes with the wind. If you throw the ashes into the wind, you will end up covered in them, which can be an unfortunate situation during an already difficult time.
7. There Are Other Ways to “Scatter” Ashes
Traditionally, when people think of scattering ashes, they think of scattering their loved one’s ashes at a beach, in the ocean or in a favourite forest, but those are not the only ways to scatter your loved one’s ashes.
You may want to “scatter” ashes by giving small vials of the ashes to all of the deceased person’s loved ones. They can either keep the ashes with them, turn them into jewellery, make them into tattoos or even scatter them on their own.
At Cremations Only, we focus exclusively on cremations, but we can also help you with setting up the memorial service and learning more about scattering. If you have lost a loved one, contact us today.