For Kagyupas its at Hejo cremation ground, the Nimapas at Hongtso and for both at Kichu Lhakhang. For Hindus Muslims at upper Chuzom and Christians in apple orchards. But each individual bereaved family have particular preference of style of last sent off for their beloved no more. Though what difference would such make to the departed member?
In news and in live sites, I have witnessed decorative arrangements as well as just minimum essential make do ones. To both kinds, I have offered silent prayers and respects. What difference would such decks make to the departed loved ones ?
But yes, to the living and those who are gathered, varying arrangements would surely imply even more varying impressions and talks. Maybe ' awesome ' maybe ' acceptable ' and great many ' humble '. Grandiose or humble, many mourners or few, officiated by high truelkus or lay priests. All details important to bereaved families and onlookers. But what difference would all these make to the departed soul ?
Maybe its six feet deep ground burial in ivory coffin or pine wood box. Maybe a newly created stupa pyre in enclosure of silken pavilion or one of the the ready installed circular concrete receptacle in which the body is laid with wood and fire lit. What difference would various sent off arrangements make to a body without the spirit ?
People cry for freedom. People die for freedom. But what really is freedom?
Its all to do with body not the spirit. The body can be held prisoner but not the mind. Humans do everything possible to gain freedom for the body when alive. . And yet upon death, the body is imprisoned as much as possible for the final voyage.
The richer and more powerful one had been, the more wrappings and enclosures for the body in death. And that is really the sorry state of human grandiose concept.
What really would be the preferred manner of final voyage by the spirit for the body that it once gave life ? I can only wonder !
I for sure would want to be free of all earthly shackles. Make my pyre fresh on the mother earth and let blue open sky roof over it. Imprison not with mundane enclosures and contain not the flame and smoke with colourful frills that only serve to pollute.
A circle of loved ones chanting the mani mantra invoking Chenrezi will just be superb. No other incidentals can make difference where my spirit ought to be.
But for my sentiment, Haa my place of birth should be where the pyre is set on fire. And ashes in Haa Chu that come from Chhundu Gangri and where it flows along the feet of Miri Phuensum. And no prayer flags. I love standing trees especially the tall and straight that are felled for poles. Just Tsa Tsa stupa made of pure soil numbering my age placed on the hill spire of Gung Karpo as a tribute to Mom and Dad who gave me life. May Love and Blessings prevail in hearts !