Thursday, July 12, 2007

Pushing up the roses?

In the Zoroastrian religion, dead bodies are left in tall "towers of silence" for vultures to pick apart. In the Lutheran faith, we turn bodies into mulch.

I just read that Swedish scientists have discovered a a way to compost human bodies, which is a more environmentally-friendly burial method than the old 'sticking a body in the ground,' as it avoids release of methane gas and other harmful chemicals a decomposing body lets off. To do so, first the body must be frozen, chopped up into tiny particles, and then finally placed in a potato sack (that's the main gist. There may have been one or two more steps.) Although distasteful to some, the Lutheran Church of Sweden has officially endorsed the new method. (Of course, it does help that the church has a 5% stake in the company.) The benefits of this method are unmistakable--not only can you save the environment, you can get a bumper crop of tomatoes, a fact probably not overlooked by those ever practical and thrifty Swedes.

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