Pray the Decay Away: Incorruptible Corpses and Other Forms of Natural Postmortem Preservation

October 1, 2015 rehadlock 21

Ancient Egypt is widely recognized for their advanced process of “mummification” which successfully prevented natural decomposition. These purposefully preserved “anthropogenic mummies” have been found in various ancient civilizations throughout the world and were created by exposure to chemicals, extreme cold, extremely low humidity and/or lack of air. Spontaneous Mummification/natural embalming can occur under the same conditions. The oldest known natural mummification was observed in a 6,000 year old severed head discovered in South America in 1934 which was found to be of the Incan Civilization. Most people are familiar with the image of a “normal”, dried up mummy, a body which did not go through the process of Putrefaction due to dehydration of the corpse; However, there are […]

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Thich Quang Duc: Monk on Fire 

October 1, 2015 rehadlock 6

On June 11, 1963 amidst what became known as the “Buddhist Crisis” a Vietnamese Mahayana Buddhist monk known as Thich Quang Duc self-immolated (committed sacrificial suicide) at a busy intersection in Saigon. While Malcolm Browne’s Pulitzer Prize winning photo of Thich Quang Duc during self-immolation is one of the most famous and powerful photographs to this day, many people do not know what led the monk to end his life in protest. Thich Quang Duc was born as “Lam Van Tac” in 1897 in Hoi Khan in the Van Ninh District, Khanh Hou province of Vietnam to Lam Huu Ung and Nguyen Thi Nuong. One of several […]

CAUSE OF DEATH: Boogie Fever

March 25, 2015 rehadlock 0

July of 1518 in Strasbourg, Alsace in the Holy Roman Empire, a bizarre plague known as “Dance Fever” broke out, killing many citizens. Also known as the “Dance Epidemic”, it forced the people of Strasbourg to dance, in many cases, to their death. The strange occurrence began when a woman named Frau Troffea began to dance erratically in a narrow street and did not stop for 4-6 days. Slowly, more people joined in and within a week 34 additional Strasbourg residents had caught Boogie Fever. By the month’s end, approximately 400 people were effected with the bizarre affliction. This event […]

Chrysippus Died Laughing (Literally)

March 23, 2015 rehadlock 4

Chrysippus was a Greek Stoic philosopher born circa 279BC in Soli, Cilicia, a Roman province located in modern-day Turkey. He served as head of the Stoic School of Hellenistic philosophy in Athens until his death in circa 206BC. It was recorded by a student at the Stoic School that the influential philosopher and headmaster literally died of laughter. Chrysippus’s deadly fit of laughter began when a donkey approached him and began eating his figs. He then jokingly commanded his slave to, “give the donkey neat wine to drink with which to wash them down.”. According to the philosophy student who documented the events […]