Archive | June 24, 2013

Oliver Sacks, Exploring How Hallucinations Happen

via NPR 9780307947437_custom-f54744401dadf5676ee07efe7e3a5f96294231c9-s2

In Oliver Sacks‘ book The Mind’s Eye, the neurologist included an interesting footnote in a chapter about losing vision in one eye because of cancer that said: “In the ’60s, during a period of experimenting with large doses of amphetamines, I experienced a different sort of vivid mental imagery.”

He expands on this footnote in his book, Hallucinations, where he writes about various types of hallucinations — visions triggered by grief, brain injury, migraines, medications and neurological disorders.

One chapter of the book — that’s out in paperback July 2 — deals with altered states and Sacks’ personal experimentation with hallucinogenic and mind-altering drugs in the ’60s. He says the first time he tried marijuana, it induced fascinating perceptual distortion. He was looking at his hand, and it appeared to be retreating from him, yet getting larger and larger.

“I was fascinated that one could have such perceptual changes, and also that they went with a certain feeling of significance, an almost numinous feeling.

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The Pursuit of Edward Snowden: Washington in a Rage, Striving to Run the World

Protesters rally in Hong Kong to support Edward Snowden 01Rarely has any American provoked such fury in Washington’s high places. So far, Edward Snowden has outsmarted the smartest guys in the echo chamber — and he has proceeded with the kind of moral clarity that U.S. officials seem to find unfathomable.

Bipartisan condemnations of Snowden are escalating from Capitol Hill and the Obama administration. More of the NSA’s massive surveillance program is now visible in the light of day — which is exactly what it can’t stand.

The central issue is our dire shortage of democracy. How can we have real consent of the governed when the government is entrenched with extreme secrecy, surveillance and contempt for privacy?

The same government that continues to expand its invasive dragnet of surveillance, all over the United States and the rest of the world, is now asserting its prerogative to drag Snowden back to the USA from anywhere on the planet. It’s not only about punishing him and discouraging other potential whistleblowers.… Read the rest

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Ancient Egyptian Statue Caught Moving On Its Own

Time-lapse surveillance footage captures the 4,000-year-old statute gradually rotating. Is it merely from the vibrations of foot traffic in the museum, or something more sinister?
The 10-inch tall relic, an offering to the Egyptian God Osiris which dates back to 1800 BC, has been at the Manchester Museum for 80 years but curators say it has recently starting rotating 180 degrees during the day. The statue is of a man named Neb-Senu. Curators have been left scratching their heads after they kept finding it facing the wrong way. They now believe there could be a 'spiritual explanation' for the turning statue. It is believed that there is a curse of the pharaohs which strikes anyone who dares to take relics from a pyramid tomb. Experts decided to monitor the room on time-lapse video and were astonished to see it clearly show the statuette spinning 180 degrees - with nobody going near it.
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Fruits and Veggies Can Be “Trained” to Defend against Herbivores

attack_of_the_killer_tomatoesJane J. Lee writes at National Geographic:

A study published online today in the journal Current Biology found that store-bought cabbage, lettuce, spinach, zucchini, sweet potatoes, carrots, and blueberries respond to light-dark cycles up to about a week after harvest.

And when the produce was kept on the same light-dark cycle as a predator—cabbage looper moth caterpillars (Trichoplusia ni)—it was better able to resist attacks.

Circadian clocks tell plants when the seasons change due to variations in day length, saidJanet Braam, a plant biologist at Rice University in Houston, Texas. But the clock is also critical in plant defenses against insects.

“[Plants] know when the insects eat,” said Braam, who is a co-author on the recent study, “so they can prepare a defense in advance.”

Braam and colleagues knew that levels of protective compounds called glucosinolates were under the control of the circadian clock in a plant called Arabidopsis.

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‘The Bond Code’ Author Philip Gardiner on James Bond, Aleister Crowley and Enochian Magick

The interview with Phillip Gardiner begins ≈ 38:57

via Coast to Coast AM

Author Philip Gardiner joined George Knapp to discuss the life of James Bond author Ian Fleming and his associations with the world of the occult which led him to create a series of clues, ciphers and codes within his novels.

Early in his life, Fleming became fascinated by the just-emerging study of psychology, which relied heavily on the occult, according to Gardiner. This interest, coupled with Fleming’s time as a spy during World War II, became the basis for the James Bond universe.

Gardiner cited a number of esoteric references in the James Bond stories, notably the “007” name being taken from the 16th century English spy John Dee, who used it as a signature in his letters to Queen Elizabeth. She, in turn, signed her responses with the letter “M,” which Fleming used as the name of the fictional head of the MI6 spy agency.

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Former Facebook Security Chief Left To Join NSA in 2010

facebook security chiefOn the symbiotic relationship increasingly being revealed between government intelligence agencies and internet corporations, Facecrooks writes:

In another twist in what was already a complicated story about Facebook’s involvement in the National Security Agency’s PRISM wiretapping technology, the New York Times revealed that Max Kelly, Facebook’s former security chief, left the site in 2010 and joined the NSA.

“Mr. Kelly’s move to the spy agency, which has not previously been reported, underscores the increasingly deep connections between Silicon Valley and the agency and the degree to which they are now in the same business,” the Times wrote. “Both hunt for ways to collect, analyze and exploit large pools of data about millions of Americans.”

As Max Kelly’s move to the NSA in 2010 illustrates, the ties between government agencies and the country’s biggest tech companies is strong.

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Caught on Tape: Karate Student Brutally Attacks Mentally Challenged Man

Curious if there are any updates on this disturbing case.  This has nothing to do with authentic Bushido (the way of the warrior) and the so-called black belts are ignorant thugs who dishonor themselves and all martial arts with their behavior.

Hanford, Calif.  (KMPH News) – A shocking and disturbing video that is now making its way across the internet has captured the attention of the Hanford Police Department.

The six minute video shows a karate instructor ordering a student to beat and possibly kill a mentally challenged man.

“It is such a disturbing video and whether it’s real or not that still needs to be confirmed,” said Hanford Police Chief Carlos Mestas.

Chief Mestas says his department is assisting in the investigation of a possible crime committed 25 years ago in the state of Virginia.

“This was a very disturbing beast type of beating,” said Mestas.

The footage was supposedly taken on December 13, 1984 at a karate dojo reportedly owned by Sgt.

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