How you spent your life and where you spent it is one thing, but your final resting place should be as ceremonious as possible. Your place of internment should be in line with your personal beliefs and it should serve as a spiritual sanctuary. With the passing of cultural icons, such as Dr. Ben the issue of the “home going” ceremony and “burial rites” are at the forefront of people’s mind. This temple built in Japan, utilizing smart technology is just a small indicator of what the possibilities can be for a forward thinking demographic, who know that mortality is a major issue, and death is inevitable.
The Ruriden columbarium, operated by the Koukokuji Buddhist Temple in Tokyo, is as futuristic as the capital of Japan itself. Believe it or not, this is a cemetery.
The Ruriden is home to 2,046 small altars, with glass Buddha statues that correspond to drawers storing the ashes of the deceased. People can visit their beloved lost ones with the help of a smart card which grants access to the building and lights up their corresponding statue.
The Ruriden took two years to build and the ashes are stored for 33 years before being buried below the Ruriden. Currently 600 altars are in use—and another 300 are reserved.
Photos: Chris McGrath/Getty Images