烟台海葬纪念园Yantai Sea Burial Memorial
image © AUL Creative
Life which originally came from sea should return to sea in the end to start a reincarnation.
In the new era, China has proposed an ecological development strategy of “clear water and green mountain”. In the funeral industry, the concept of ecological burial has been widely accepted by people today. As an approach for ecological burial, “sea burial” has been greatly promoted and supported by the government.
The “Sea Burial Memorial” which was co-built by the Huilongshan Merits and Virtues Garden and the Yantai Civil Affairs Bureau implemented the concept of ecological burial and provided a memorial for the ceremony of the deceased. The Memorial is located in the Huilongshan Merits and Virtues Garden in Yantai City. It is 25m from north to south, 12m from east to west, and covers an area of 300 square meters. The construction was started since September 2017 and has been completed for trial use since then. Compared with grassland burial, tree burial, wall burial and other environmental sensitive burial styles, sea burial can undoubtedly achieve optimal land utilization to the maximum extent. According to the prediction of the current growth forecast of sea burial, hundreds or even thousands of Mu (Chinese unit of area) of land can be saved in Yantai City in the future.
The design of the ” Sea Burial Memorial ” was inspired by the elves in the sea – shells and pearls. The main scene evokes people’s memory to the sea through combination of a shell sculpture and a reflecting pool, while the pearl hidden in the shell symbolizes the remembrance of the dead which has been treasured forever. People stand at the pool in front of the sculpture and gaze into the water while the reflection of the setting sun falls into the hustle, they will feel the moment being with the beloved just like yesterday, a soul communication between the living and the passed.
The memorial wall on the north side is engraved with wave patterns, while 8 cherry trees are planted on the west side of the pool. During the Qingming period, the falling spring rain and the blooming sakura render the entire memorial full of vitality of life. Although the memorial is not in big size, it tries to create a sense of the sea within extremely limited area.
In order to accomplish this charity project successfully, both the designers and the owners make their greatest effort without consideration of payback. Both the local civil affairs bureau and Huilongshan Merits and Virtues Garden hope that these efforts will be helpful for more people who choose sea burial to retain a spiritual wealth. The construction of “Sea Burial Memorial” is also a great endeavor for encouraging and promoting the ecological way of optimal land utilization.
“Face the sea, with spring blossoms “, warmth and eternity of life has been treasured in this small memorial, forever.