Natural Grieving, a Method of Preservation: Implementing Natural Burials in Ontario’s Greenbelt
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We experience an incredible amount of emotion when death touches our lives. With death comes the complexity of loss and grief. The spaces of death, from the morgue, the funeral home to the cemetery, are significant components of mourning practices. They are the physical realms that lead us from one moment of grief to another. The space of death is designed for the dead, yet it is more important for those that remain living. These spaces resonate within the human consciousness, becoming places and memories. Identities and values all contribute to one’s relation with mourning rituals and death practices. This thesis outlines the importance of acknowledging grief and its social implications while examining the evolving religious and cultural identities of Canada. While our knowing of death rituals continues to change, the thesis leverages natural burials to reconcile with the land we live on and preserve the ground that sustains us. Through recognizing the contribution of the Indigenous people who continue to share their land with Canadians, we can also begin to restore our place within the land. Grounded on three inherent relationships: 1. the relation between our values and the way we mourn, 2. the relation between our sense of belonging and the landscape, 3. the relation between the deceased body and the burial site, the design proposal, Natural Burials in Ontario’s Greenbelt, will examine how burial spaces can be re-formulated in ways that reflect present-day values of increasingly multicultural cities of Ontario. From this, a new cemetery landscape emerges; reconciliation is made between the user’s emotion and the environment in which they experience it. Central to the work is also how implementing natural burials in Ontario’s greenspaces gives newfound meaning to land preservation and permanence.
Cite this version of the work
Chieh Yu Hung (2021). Natural Grieving, a Method of Preservation: Implementing Natural Burials in Ontario’s Greenbelt. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/16962