During his final illness, Dad found solace in the philosophy of Teilhard de Chardin, a renegade Jesuit whose teachings were denounced by the Church(typical of the folks Dad admired). When I went to see him in 2012, he asked me for my thoughts about the evolution of consciousness and life. I gave him what I considered to be a textbook Darwinian answer to the effect that it's all random with no goal or point whatsoever, that development is determined locally by pressure of environment on the available genetic pools etc, etc.... Dad had clearly determined otherwise. Evolution was, and is, in what I take to be his view, a developmental process that has more in common with the enlargement and expression of a universal Mind one finds in Hegel than the ad hoc adaptations I see in standard Darwinism. He explicitly mentioned Teilhard de Chardin to me at the time. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre_Teilhard_de_Chardin
Related ideas such as rapidly accelerating rates of technological change, including the so-called singularity, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity , and various incarnations of de Chardin's notion of the Omega Point, abound, including in the rather strange writings of scientists like Frank Tipler(author of a textbook on modern physics). Other related ideas include the Noosphere, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noosphere , with origins both in Chardin and in the once uber-famous, but now virtually forgotten, Henri Bergson.
Dad seemed to believe at the end that somehow the next phase of evolution would include a reconstitution of extended family communities. I never fully grasped the relation between the extended family he was speaking of and universal evolution, but it meant something to him. Normally folks think of modernity as the enemy of the romantic notion of extended families, but perhaps Dad had hit upon some other notion, perhaps because distance is erased by instant communication, but this is speculation.
It not surprising therefore that Dad opted for a 'green' burial. It would have been important in his eyes to reintegrate the remains of his last substance to the Earth and the universal process.