The Facebook for the Dead

More Halloween-week fun.

Interesting article today in Slate about the hobby of graving. A description of the graving hobby from the Slate article:

The graving hobby encompasses a range of activities: There are tombstone tourists who plan vacations around the resting places of 1950s Hollywood stars and military gravers who track down the government-issue markers of fallen 101st Airborne soldiers. Genealogical gravers fill blank spots in their family tree with information gleaned from far-flung headstones. Preservationist gravers use bleach to clean mottle from 200-year-old markers. Many gravers just like to hang out in cemeteries and look at the stones.
Many gravers use the website Find a Grave, which Slate calls "The Facebook for the Dead."

I don't think I'd consider myself a graver, but I am an aficionado of cemeteries. I love to visit old cemeteries and look at the symbolism of the statuary and artwork. I've always found this to be a spiritual activity, a part of the memento mori tradition. It's also why I like Ecclesiastes so much:
I also thought, "As for men, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals. Man's fate is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; man has no advantage over the animal. Everything is meaningless. All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?"

So I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to enjoy his work, because that is his lot. For who can bring him to see what will happen after him?

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