Dear Khurram and Jawaid Saheb,
Allah does not concern Himself with dead bodies; too many verses in the Qur'an to mention here. It is the actions during life that count. The Qur'an does not recommend or condemn any method of disposal of the corpse.
TUN-E BAY ROOH SAY BAIZAAR HAI HAQ
KHUDA-E ZINDA ZINDON KA KHUDA HAI
God detests a body without soul
The Living God is the God of the living
The story of Able and Cane (Haabeel and Qaabeel) in the Qur'an admires the perseverance of Haabeel, and denounces the most vicious crime of murder (by Qaabeel). Therefore, this story cannot be taken as an ordinance on burial - that Qaabeel sees a raven throwing soil on a dead raven and gets the idea of burying Haabeel. (5:27-31)
We know that the Qur'an presents Adam, Wife of Adam, Able and Cane allegorically as early humans. Verse 3:7 makes it clear that many verses in the Qur'an (especially the world of the unseen, including distant past and the future) are to be taken as Mutashabihaat or allegories.
Funny stuff: Ali Hajweri, the so-called Daata Ganj Bakhsh's lame duck imagination: The two ravens were also real brothers and the elder one had killed the younger one because of jealousy about a beautiful female raven :-) This is exactly what our ancient tafsirs say about Able and Cane.
There is an interesting Hadith on the subject, perhaps, in Bukhari: Rasulullah (S) said that in the bygone days, there was a man who wrote down a will for cremation. When he reached God, he was asked why he chose to be cremated. The man replied, "Ya Allah, I was afraid of Your punishment." God was pleased and told him to enter Paradise. [This Hadith, and NO other hadith, denounces cremation]
Our brilliant ancient Mufassireen have written that Eve (AmmaN Hawwa) used to deliver twins, a boy and a girl, after each pregnancy. Then, the boy from the previous pregnancy used to get married to the girl of the next pregnancy, and vice versa. Wow! Were they still not brothers and sisters? So, the story goes on that Cane was engaged to the girl who was not beautiful and Able got a beautiful girl as his share. It was this jealousy that prompted Cane to kill Able. How's that?
About an ecologically friendly procedure, cremation cannot score any points over burial. Think of the huge amounts of firewood, fire accidents and thick clouds of smoke, bones being thrown around on streets near the SHAMSHAAN GHAAT or MURGHUT, the stray hungry dogs, cats and vultures chewing on the bones and any roasted meat for their fill, the bony and even tissue remains being thrown in River Ganges etc. Al Gore will beat his forehead if he saw the whole scene!
Sahaba Kiraam used to get buried in the same clothes they were wearing at the time of death. No elaborate coffins of cloth or TABOOTS (wooden boxes).
A poor nation like Pakistan buries millions of yards of LATTHA (white cloth) and countless tons of useful wood as coffins every year. For what? Ancient customs and traditions!
Finally, JANNAT-UL-BAQEE', the little sacred graveyard of Madinah has not filled up in 1400 years. Why? The graves are regularly emptied every three months and the shrunk remains trashed in the desert.
CONCLUSION: Death is inevitable but there is no perfect way to dispose off the baggage it brings. Electrical incineration of the corpse seems to be the solution in not too distant future.
Certainly, people are entitled to their opinions and I will respect them.
Azizam Jawaid Saheb, there should be no fear or grief when we hold on to the Book of Allah.
A lifelong student
dictated, not read.