In roughly 900 CE until its outlaw in 1905, the Chinese developed a method of execution called Lingchi. This form of execution served as torture, public embarrassment, and punishment that continued well after death. The practice was reserved for severe crimes - treason, patricide/matricide, and mass murder. Its continued use is reported through the Vietnam War, even after it was outlawed several years earlier. While it may conjure images of just 1,000 cuts, the practice of Lingchi was a brutal and drawn-out process. Executioners would deliver justice through a series of cuts to the skin, removing pieces of flesh intended to see how many cuts a person could withstand before dying. The practice was generally followed by amputation, a stab to the heart, or decapitation.
HDT had a huge impact on me when I was younger and still at times whispers in my ear when I'm looking for that solution that seems untenable at best and precarious more often than not. His writing when I first encountered it was sophisticated yet obviously simple. I longed to rebel and move to a cabin on a pond to stand against the encroachment of law to the wilds of man. Long lasting echos of simplification still encroach on my life some twenty-two years past when I enlisted for the most conforming process possible for a seventeen year old boy.