Photo of the Day: VR in the Funeral Parlor

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12:44 AM HKT, Thu April 5, 2018

This week’s photo theme is, well, it’s death. Not because we’re trying to be overly morbid, but because Thursday 5 April is Qingming Festival in China, a day where families traditionally tend to the graves of their ancestors and an occasion often referred to as “Tomb Sweeping Day”.

A recent “open day” at Beijing’s Babao Shan funeral parlor featured the chance for visitors to test out a new VR set-up whereby users can “experience the passing into death”. After donning the head set at the “Life Cultural Exhibition”, users were thrust into a number of different scenarios according to State media, including

“sudden illness at work”, “hospitalization and treatment”, “heart stops beating”, “saying farewell to relatives” and “recalling the past”. The [funeral parlor] staff told reporters that this “crossing from life to death” experience can allow people feel to realise the beauty of life and to cherish their existence more.

Presumably it also has the ability to really freak you out.

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