Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Why be buried in a boring coffin?

Why be buried in a boring coffin?

GHANA: Why be buried in a boring coffin, when you can get handmade coffins that look like a fish, lobster, snake, bird, shoe, beer bottle, even a cigarette?

For the Ga tribe in coastal Ghana, funerals are a time of mourning, but also of celebration.

The Ga people believe that when their loved ones die, they move on into another life — and the Ga make sure they do so in style.

They honor their dead with brightly colored coffins that celebrate the way they lived.

The coffins are designed to represent an aspect of the dead person’s life — such as a car if they were a driver, a fish if their livelihood was the sea — or a sewing machine for a seamstress. They might also symbolize a vice — such as a bottle of beer or a cigarette.

You can order your own coffin. Wood-carved, painted and in every form you like. If you spent your life, working as a fisherman, you can get buried in a seaworthy 2 m boat model (including crew).

People who only dreamt of having an own car get buried in a wooden Mercedes-Benz. The customers pay between 500 and 1000 $ for such examples of one-way art, which will leave a lasting impression on the day of their funeral. Until this day comes, the coffins are stored in the owners house-dreams of a future which will come true in the beyond.


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