Archive

Posts Tagged ‘remains’

Do You Love Music? Is Music Your Life? Now It Can Be Your Death.

September 24, 2010 Leave a comment

You’ve lived a good life. You’ve done some things, had some laughs, and now its time to decide what to do after you pass on.

Burial used to be the only option, but nowadays we have many more options to consider. Gene Roddenberry had his ashes launched into space, others have them released into the ocean, and now you can even have your ashes pressed into a vinyl record.

Yes a company in the UK called Andvinyly is offering a service in which they press some of your cremated remains into a vinyl record of your choice.

You can even have your own record made with some of your own music, record some of your own poetry or words of wisdom, complete with a smattering of your Earthly remains into the tracks.

The amount of ash they actually use is quite small, since as any vinyl purist will know, any kind of dust or impurities on the record will degrade the sound quality. So you can still choose to have the bulk of your remains launched into space if you so desire.

And I have to say, this sounds kinda cool. Can you imagine a record playing at your memorial service with some of your ashes pressed right into it? And you can make some pretty artistic statements with your song selection.

Personally, I think I would go with “Comfortably Numb” by Pink Floyd.

Although, “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult also seems like an obvious choice.

So if space burial is a little beyond your means, at a $3000 price tag this vinyl pressing doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.

After all, as Neil Young so eloquently put it: “Rock and roll can never die.”

Remains of John the Baptist Found? Unlikely…

August 12, 2010 Leave a comment

A little less than a week ago, Bozhidar Dimitrov, Bulgaria’s minister without portfolio and a former director of the country’s National History Museum, announced that the remains of St. John the Baptist (JTB) have been found in monastery in Bulgaria.

St. John is a prolific figure in Christian history. He foretold the coming of Jesus and even baptised Jesus himself, according to scriptures.

John the Baptist

St. John was beheaded at the hands of King Herod shortly before Jesus is said to have died on the cross. His head supposedly served on a plate to Herod’s stepdaughter Salome.

So why do these Bulgarians think these bones, which include parts of a skull, jaw, arm and tooth, belong to THE John the Baptist?

Evidently, the urn in which the bones were found has the date June 24 inscribed on it, which is the day John was supposedly born and has been celebrated in the Mediterranean and Quebec.

Urn in which the supposed remains of John the Baptist are contained

That’s about it.

No carbon dating has been performed to determine the age of the bones, and no explanation as to how the urn came to the monastery has been given.

I personally find it interesting that the remains include pieces of a head and an arm. Seems strange that after beheading John the Baptist that King Herod would bother to put the head and body in the same place, particularly after the head was so callously served on a plate to Salome.

Of course, records from this time period are sketchy at best. And lets not forget that several other countries also claim to have the remains of John the Baptist, such as Istanbul, Egypt and Armenia.

Skeptics live by the credence that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. This evidence is far from extraordinary.

So don’t be surprised if/when this find turns out to be totally bogus. Or the Bulgarian archeaologists simply don’t bother to investigate the remains further and keep shouting to the media that they found something great.

Leave Galileo’s Remains Alone

June 9, 2010 Leave a comment

Hasn’t he suffered enough?

After fighting the Catholic Church (and losing), only to die in 1642 and have Catholic authorities refuse him the right to be buried on consecrated ground (i.e. in a Basilica), our poor friend Galileo Galilei now has two of his fingers and one tooth ON DISPLAY at a museum in the Italy.

In 1737, after 95 years of his body being in a storage room, Galileo was (finally!) moved to the Basilica of Florence’s Santa Croce.

But it would seem his followers decided it would be a great idea to remove two of the fingers from his right hand (how did they decide which?) and one of his teeth before finally laying him to rest in the Basilica. I’m not sure I would want to keep a piece of one of my dead friends, but that’s just me.

These remains were passed down to family members until 1905, when all traces of them were lost.

But last year, an unaware collector purchased a wooden case at a museum auction which had a bust of Galileo on it. Imagine this lover of antiquity’s surprise when he opened the case and found a glass vase with two fingers and a tooth inside!

The remains were later identified to be those of none other than Galileo Galilei.

These remains are currently on display at the newly re-named Galileo Museum in Florence, Italy.

I say: leave Galileo alone! Putting his remains on display is macabre and in poor taste. This pioneering scientist deserves a respectful and honorable resting place and burial, not to have his fingers and teeth put under glass as some sort of science exhibit.

I feel that this is wholly different from viewing other remains such as mummies. We have much to learn from mummified remains about the culture, practices, and religion of ancient Egypt. Conversely, we have written records and many other means of learning about the 1600-1700s without placing Galileo’s remains on display. They’re presence in the museum serves absolutely no purpose.