Lincoln S Stern

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On Death..

"How you die is more important than how you live."

A 'Ushabtis' is a burial figure left in the tomb of the dead to serve as servants in the afterlife:
"Illumine the Osiris I, whose word is truth. Hail, Shabti. If the Osiris I be decreed to do any of the work which is to be done in the Khert-Neter (i.e. the cemetery), let everything which standeth in the way be removed from him – or to carry sand from (the East to the West). 'Here am I', you shall say, 'I shall do it.'"

A 'Death Camera' is desensitized to all the horrors the profession entails.

Sometimes it's the things that aren't there - the graves that were purposely erased to remove memory that make the biggest impact.

You shouldn't have to use imagination to uncover historical layers but be moved by what is not there.

You can tell almost everything about a person by just knowing where they were born and how they died.

'Cryptic-Social Photography' is styled towards destroying all legends as an ultimate point in life by finishing them off in death and resurrecting those buried in unmarked graves or unknown locations after authorities' efforts to hide the burial sites backfires on them.

The scenario of the former unknown grave sites of Benito Mussolini & Ernesto 'Che' Guevara are reminders of this.

The vitality of a grave's location rapidly becomes a matter of intense interest in that as long as the grave doesn't exist, a corpse that is nowhere is everywhere., which is the case with Alexander the Great, Scipio Africanus, Genghis Khan, Marco Polo, Crazy Horse, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid.

Still today certain graves such as that of Rudolf Hess are purposely entirely erased. Hess's grave was re-opened on 20 July 2011 and his remains were exhumed and cremated. His ashes were scattered at sea; the gravestone, which bore the epitaph "Ich hab's gewagt" ("I have dared"), was destroyed.

The Honor Temples (Ehrentempel) were two structures in Munich, erected in 1935, housing the sarcophagi of the sixteen members (the Blutzeugen, "blood witnesses") of the Nazi party who had been killed in the failed Beer Hall Putsch.

On July 5, 1945 the American occupying army removed the bodies from the Ehrentempel and contacted their families. They were given the option of having their loved ones buried in unmarked graves or family plots in Munich cemeteries or having them cremated.
The columns of the structures were recycled into brake shoes for municipal buses and new material for art galleries damaged in the war. The sarcophagi were melted down and given to the Munich tram service who used it for soldering material to repair rail and electrical lines damaged by the war.

On January 9, 1947 the main architectural features of the temples were destroyed by the U.S. Army as part of denazification. The upper parts of the structures were blown up. The centre portion was subsequently partially filled in but often filled with rain water which created a natural memorial.

When Germany was reunited there were plans made for a biergarten, restaurant, or café on the site of the Ehrentempel but these were derailed by the growth of rare biotope vegetation on the site.
As a result of this, the temples were spared complete destruction and the foundation bases of the monuments remain, intersecting on the corner of Briennerstrasse and Arcisstrasse.

In the intermittent period of the 1947 destruction and 1990 handover, basements (hitherto unknown to the Americans) were uncovered beneath the structures. A small plaque added in 2007 explains their function.

Needless to say according to the Quaker belief that death equalizes everyone, graves and stones can be unmarked, such as the graves of Jack London & Jacob Riis.

A great boulder marks the grave of Lloyd George. There is no inscription. However a monument designed by the architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis was subsequently erected around the grave, bearing an englyn (strict-metre stanza) engraved on slate in his memory.
Nearby stands the Lloyd George Museum, opened in 1963.

A grave, such as Titian, is interred in the Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, lying near his own famous painting, the Madonna di Ca' Pesaro. No memorial marked his grave. Much later the Austrian rulers of Venice commissioned Antonio Canova to sculpt a large monument.

Yet there are those like Woody Guthrie who choose to be cremated and are neither. Ashes dumped in the ocean off Coney Island.
Zero Mostel on the other hand in accordance with his final request, did not stage a funeral or memorial service. He was cremated and the location of his ashes are not publicly known.

Rudyard Kipling told stories of places through his poetry, such as the poem "Lichtenberg" which relates the impact of a combatant and his journey towards death in a foreign land having a legacy far beyond a rusting cross at the Lichtenburg cemetery.

At the beginning of World War I, Kipling also wrote poems which supported the war, that Britain was standing up for the cause of good.
Kipling was asked by the British government to write propaganda, an offer he immediately accepted. His pamphlets and stories were very popular with the British people during the war with his major themes glorifying the British military as the place for heroic men to be.

Kipling's son, John had wanted to join the Royal Navy, but was turned down after a failed medical exam. He opted for military service as an Army officer, but his eyesight was an issue. He tried to enlist twice, but was rejected.
His father being lifelong friends with Lord Roberts, Colonel of the Irish Guards, at Rudyard's request, John was accepted.

John Kipling would be killed in action at the Battle of Loos on September 1915, at age 18.
He was last seen stumbling through the mud blindly, screaming in agony after an exploding shell had ripped his face apart.
A body identified as his was not found until 1992, although that identification had been challenged.

In January 2016 it was announced that the mystery of the whereabouts of John's body had been solved and that he had been buried some distance away from the battlefield.

After his son's death, Kipling wrote, "If any question why we died/ Tell them, because our fathers lied."

In response to John's death, Kipling joined the Imperial War Graves Commission, the group responsible for garden-like British war graves found along the former Western Front and other locations around the world where troops of the British Empire lie buried.

Kipling's poem "The King's Pilgrimage" (1922) depicts a journey which King George V made, touring the cemeteries and memorials under construction.

Kipling's most significant contribution to the project was his selection of the biblical phrase "Their Name Liveth For Evermore" (Ecclesiasticus 44.14, KJV) found on the Stones of Remembrance in larger war cemeteries and his suggestion of the phrase "Known unto God" for the gravestones of unidentified servicemen.
He chose the inscription "The Glorious Dead" on the Cenotaph, Whitehall, London.
Kipling penned an inscription for the Honored Dead Memorial (Siege Memorial) in Kimberley.

Kipling's short story, "The Gardener", depicts visits to war cemeteries.

Archimedes of Syracuse (287 – c. 212 BC) a Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer anticipated modern calculus and analysis by applying concepts of infinitesimals and the method of exhaustion to derive and rigorously prove a range of geometrical theorems, including the area of a circle, the surface area and volume of a sphere, and the area under a parabola.

He is credited with designing innovative machines, such as his screw pump, compound pulleys, and defensive war machines to protect his native Syracuse from invasion.

Archimedes died during the Siege of Syracuse when he was killed by a Roman soldier despite orders that he should not be harmed. Cicero describes visiting the tomb of Archimedes, which was surmounted by a sphere and a cylinder, which Archimedes had requested to be placed on his tomb, representing his mathematical discoveries.

Some grave's final location can be quite complicated and time consuming like that of Hermann Löns (29 August 1866 – 26 September 1914) author of "Der Wehrwolf" which ironically deals with "The Thirty Years' War", were the main protagonist, Harm Wulf, a peasant, lost his family in the first years of war defends a hill fort and it's surrounding carr from pillaging hordes. He gathers more and more allies until 121 men are in the Alliance of the Wehrwolf. When peace is finally restored Harm Wulf is an old and grim man.

On 5 January 1933, a French farmer found the boots of a German soldier in one of his fields. With the help of the local sexton, he uncovered a skeleton and identification tag.
The sexton buried the body in an individual grave in a German graveyard near Loivre. It took almost 18 months for the tag to reach Berlin via the German embassy in France.
This tag was subsequently lost during an Allied bombing raid on Berlin; an extant photograph of it does not allow a definite conclusion on whether the tag said "F.R.". However, on 8 May 1934 the newspaper Völkische Beobachter announced that the grave of Löns had been discovered.

In October 1934, at the behest of Adolf Hitler, Löns' purported body was exhumed and brought to Germany. There was not any medical examination to try to verify that these were indeed the remains of the writer.

In 1919, several bodies had been exhumed in the vicinity of the area where Löns was killed and transferred to the war cemetery at Luxembourg. From there they were moved to a mass grave near Loivre, where they remain to this day. It is quite possible that Löns' remains were among them.

The exhumed body the Nazis claimed was Löns was supposed to be buried in the Lüneburg Heath, given his association with the area. However, the exact location of his new grave posed problems.

The initial plan to bury him at the Sieben Steinhäuser, a megalithic site, was abandoned since the military at the time had still secret plans to establish the military training facility Bergen in the area.

An alternative site near Wilseder Berg was rejected due to concerns about the environmental effect of large numbers of visitors to the grave.

Finding a suitable burial place became an issue for the top echelons of the regime. Rumors circulated that Löns had been Jewish, a social democrat or a pacifist. His alcohol abuse and "womanising" also became an issue.

To deal with what was increasingly becoming an embarrassing situation for the regime, on 30 November 1934 members of the Sturmabteilung, apparently on orders from Goebbels, snatched the remains from the graveyard chapel in Fallingbostel where they were awaiting reburial.

They buried them near the roadside of what was then Reichsstrasse 3 (today Bundesstrasse 3 or B3) south of Barrl, near the area known presently as Reinsehlen Camp. However, on 2 August 1935, the anniversary of the start of World War I, on the initiative of von Blomberg, Minister of War, the Reichswehr exhumed the remains and transferred them to the Tietlinger Wacholderhain near Walsrode, where an earlier (1929) memorial had been erected, for a ceremonial reburial.

Today there are 113 memorials total to Löns in Germany plus eight in Austria and 19 in other countries. Additionally, 247 streets and roads in Germany have been named for him. Twelve schools have his name and a stadium at Paderborn.

Carl Friedrich Goerdeler (31 July 1884 – 2 February 1945) was a German politician, an anti-Semitic, and a putz.

In May 1944, Goerdeler revived his idea of 1943 of talking Hitler into resigning as a way of achieving a peaceful end to Nazi Germany.

Goerdeler proposed to meet with Hitler to explain to him why his leadership was defective and hoped that Hitler would resign and appoint Goerdeler as his successor.
Again, it took considerable effort on the part of Goerdeler's friends to talk him out of this plan, which they considered to be as bizarre as it was impractical reflecting a certain lack of realism on his part.

On 17 July 1944, a warrant for Goerdeler's arrest was issued causing him to go into hiding.
The Gestapo searched the room in which Goerdeler had been hiding out in which they discovered the text of Goerdeler's planned radio address to the German people as Chancellor.

Goerdeler was apprehended on 12 August 1944 after being denounced by an innkeeper named Lisbeth Schwaerzel in Marienwerder (modern Kwidzyn, Poland) while visiting the grave of his parents.

After his arrest, eight members of Goerdeler's family were sent to the concentration camps under the Sippenhaft law. His brother Fritz was also sentenced to death and executed.

On 9 September 1944, after a trial at the People's Court, he was sentenced to death. Goerdeler freely co-operated with the Gestapo in naming names, which made him the object of a considerable hatred from the other prisoners, who saw him as a "spineless rat.
It was reported that Goerdeler was never tortured, but was instead subjected to "the overheating of cells, bright light shining on one's face while one tried to sleep".

Goerdeler's hope in confessing all was to overload the Gestapo with information, and thereby buy time to save his life and in the process, he caused hundreds involved in the plot to be arrested.

Had the 20 July plot to assassinate Hitler of 1944 succeeded, Goerdeler would have served as the Chancellor of the new government. After his arrest he provided total cooperation to the Gestapo, causing the arrests and executions of hundreds or thousands of others. He was finally executed by hanging on 2 February 1945 at Plötzensee Prison in Berlin.

To the Germans, hanging was considered a dishonorable death but for the American outlaw and pistolero Bill Longly, who just prior to his lynching communicated to a girl in the crowd of spectators that "Hanging is my favorite way of dying" ..

An interesting life to death journey would be that of Welsh privateer
Sir Henry Morgan (c. 1635 – 25 August 1688).

Much of Morgan's early life is unknown but when diplomatic relations between the Kingdom of England and Spain worsened in 1667, Morgan was given a letter of marque, a licence to attack and seize Spanish vessels. Morgan subsequently conducted successful and highly lucrative raids in Camaguey Cuba, Panama City Porto Bello Panama, Maracaibo Gibraltar Venezuela.
To appease the Spanish, with whom the English had signed a peace treaty, Morgan was arrested and summoned to London in 1672, but was treated as a hero by the general populace and the leading figures of government and royalty including Charles II, handsomely lionized ... as the hero on whom Drake's mantle had fallen".

Released from the Tower of London without charge and appointed a Knight Bachelor in November 1674 Morgan returned to Jamaica shortly afterward to serve as the territory's Lieutenant Governor traveling on board the Jamaica Merchant.
The ship foundered on the rocks of Île-à-Vache and Morgan and the crew were temporarily stranded on the island until picked up by a passing merchant ship.

A memoir published by Alexandre Exquemelin, a former shipmate of Morgan's, accused the privateer of widespread torture and other offenses; Morgan brought a libel suit against the book's English publishers and won, although the black picture Exquemelin portrayed of Morgan has affected history's view of the Welshman.

He died in Jamaica on 25 August 1688. A state funeral was ordered and Morgan's body laid at King's House for the public to pay respects. An amnesty was declared so that pirates and privateers could pay their respects without fear of arrest.
His life was romanticized after his death and he became the inspiration for pirate-themed works of fiction across a range of genres.

It was stated that Henry Morgan was the uncle of Daniel Morgan's (July 6, 1736 – July 6, 1802) great-great-grandfather, one of the most gifted battlefield tacticians of the American Revolutionary War.

Confederate General John Hunt Morgan is also one of his descendants

Henry Morgan was buried at Palisadoes cemetery, Port Royal.

On 7 June 1692 an earthquake struck Port Royal. Two-thirds of the town, 33 acres, sank into Kingston harbor immediately after the main shock. Palisadoes cemetery, including Morgan's grave, was one of the parts of the city to fall into the sea; his body has never been subsequently located.

In 2016 a Philistine cemetery was discovered, containing about 150 dead buried in oval-shaped graves, indicating an Aegean origin, which is to be confirmed by genetic testing.

Dr. William Luther Pierce III (September 11, 1933 – July 23, 2002) wrote "The Fame of a Dead Man's Deeds" (2001). The book's title was taken from Pierce's favorite quote, an Old Norse proverb from the Hávamál in the Poetic Edda:

Cattle die,
kinsmen die
you yourself die;
I know one thing
which never dies:
the judgment of a dead man's life.

Leading an interesting life does not mean anything if you do not have an interesting death.

"How you die, when you die, where you die, and why you die, determines how you lived"

S.P.E.C.T.E.R. - G.H.O.S.T.S. 13th Group
'Never Negotiate - Nothing Remains'
"Inoiz Negoziatzeko - Deus Geratzen"

Death need not concern us because when we exist death does not, and when death exists we do not - Epicurus



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