virtual graveyards

In Japan some temples have virtual graveyards, with video screens that

In Japan some temples have virtual graveyards, with video screens that display your ancestor’s death tablet and family crest when you pay your respects

The Eternal Use Virtual Grave fits a peculiar need in Japan. With fewer people marrying and having children, the number of people who are the last in their family lines is increasing. In Japan, this is especially sad, because not only does this leave you without anyone to organize your periodic death anniversary parties, nobody shows up every year at O-Bon to visit you, spruce up the family tomb, leave a pack of your favorite smokes, and burn incense.One solution to this vexing problem is to pay a one time fee (in this case, around $125,000) to have your ashes interred in the temple’s vault instead of inside a traditional family plinth. When well-wishers come to pay their respects to your earthly remains, they enter the special temple hall with these beautifully appointed semi-private booths. They call up your Buddhist name – the one that’s given to you after your death and inscribed on the traditional black marble tablets that are kept at the temple – and it appears on a big video screen behind the incense urn, along with your family crest. The visitors pay their respects just like they’d do at a regular grave, but your tomb doesn’t become tatty and neglected-looking because your descendants aren’t giving it a good hoovering once a year.

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