Author Archive | majestic

Dying is Absolutely Safe

Cover of the San Francisco Oracle featuring Ram Dass. (CC)

Cover of the San Francisco Oracle featuring Ram Dass. (CC)

Do you remember Ram Dass? He was born Richard Alpert and was known for his personal and professional associations with Timothy Leary. He’s now a spiritual teacher and tells us at his website that dying is absolutely safe:

There is a tombstone in Ashby, Massachusetts that reads, “Remember friend, as you pass by, as you are now, so once was I. As I am now, so you must be. Prepare yourself to follow me.”

Something has happened to me as a result of meandering through many realms of consciousness over the past fifty years that has changed my attitude toward death. A lot of the fear about death has gone from me. I am someone who actually delights in being with people as they are dying. It is such incredible grace for me. In the morning, if I know I am going to be with such a person, I get absolutely thrilled because I know I am going to have an opportunity to be in the presence of Truth.

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‘We Must End Monsanto’s Colonization, It’s Enslavement of Farmers’

Dr. Vandana Shiva. Photo: Augustus Binu (CC)

Dr. Vandana Shiva. Photo: Augustus Binu (CC)

Vandana Shiva, the Indian environmental activist and anti-globalization author, tells us “We Must End Monsanto’s Colonization, It’s Enslavement of Farmers,” writing at EcoWatch:

Citizens of the U.S. are being denied the right to know what they are feeding their families. Despite the fact that 90 percent of American citizens want GMO labeling on their food, big business is doing everything it can to prevent people from accessing their rights. Representative Pompeo’s bill, popularly known as the DARK Act (Denying Americans the Right to Know), has been written almost entirely by the biotech industry lobby. While American citizens are advocating for their rights to knowledge and healthy, affordable food, Monsanto’s legal team is busy on every legislative level trying to prevent this from happening.

Monsanto’s subversion of democratic legal processes is not new. In fact, it is their modus operandi, be it the subversion of LA’s decision to be GMO free by amending the California Seed Law—equating corporations with persons and making seed libraries and exchange of seedbeyond 3 miles illegal—or suing Maui County for passing a law banning GMOs.

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Wyoming Man Found With 30 Eyeballs Stuffed Up His Anus

Roy Tilbott

Roy Tilbott

We’ve had several requests to post this story from Crazed.com. If true, it’s definitely one of the stranger stories we’ve heard for a while. Who stuffs eyeballs up their anus, anyway?

CASPER, Wyo. – Police made a routine traffic stop early Thursday morning and got more than they bargained for when Roy Tilbott, 51, stepped out of his El Camino for a field sobriety test and Casper police noticed several eyeballs slide from his right pant leg onto the road.

Feeling they could have a potential murderer on their hands, police quickly drew guns and cuffed Tilbott.

Tilbott assured police the eyeballs were not human, but instead cow eyeballs he had pilfered from Johnson Meats (a slaughterhouse) where Tilbott is employed as a butcher.

cow-eyeball

Bovine eyeball from Tilbott’s rectum. A total of 30 were found. Image Source: Casper Police Department

“Company won’t let us take animal scraps home and instead toss them in the landfill,” Tilbott said in the police report.

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Canary App Tells You If You’re Too Stoned To Drive

If you’re a stoner and a driver you might want to check out the new app Canary being touted by NORML. Fast Company reviews:

Last week, NORML, a group dedicated to legalizing marijuana announced a new iPhone app designed to prevent stoned driving.

The app, called Canary, allows users to determine whether they’re in a suitable condition to drive. It runs through a battery of tests: remembering a sequence of numbers, balancing on one foot, playing a digital whack-a-mole game, and then estimating a time period of 20 seconds. By comparing the results against a personal baseline or a collective average, users receive a green, yellow, or red light assessing their level of functioning.

Drivers can be impaired by factors as diverse as fatigue, alcohol, or legal medications, but NORML is plugging it as a way for potential drivers to determine whether they are too high to drive, which has proven to be a confounding issue as more states allow medical and recreational marijuana.

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Neurodiversity Activists Creating Adult Autism Communities

Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN)

Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN)

It’s great to hear that autistic adults are able to create vibrant communities of like-minded individuals. The Washington Post describes how neurodiversity activists went about the task:

 Alanna Whitney was a weird kid. She had a strange knack for pronouncing long words. Anchovies on pizza could send her cowering under a table. Her ability to geek out on subjects such as Greek mythology and world religions could be unsettling. She drank liquids obsessively, and in her teens, her extreme water intake landed her in the hospital.

Years later, she found a word that explained it all: Autistic. Instead of grieving, she felt a rush of relief. “It was the answer to every question I’d ever had,” she recalled. “It was kind of like a go-ahead to shed all of those things I could or couldn’t do and embrace myself for who I am.”

So it came to be that Whitney, 24, was arranging strawberries and store-bought cookies on platters at the Queensborough Community Center for a celebration of “Autistic Pride Day,” her shoulder-length hair dyed mermaid green to match her purse and sandals.

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Welcome To Patriot Park, Vladimir Putin’s ‘Military Disneyland’

How long before the United States decides it needs its own military Disneyland? Oh wait, is that what Jade Helm is about? The Washington Times profiles Russia’s Patriot Park:

MOSCOW — Smiling children run from tanks to rocket launchers, pausing only to check out the range of Kalashnikov assault rifles on display. Others crane their necks to admire military helicopters and fighter jets in the sky above. For dinner, the menu offers up real army rations.

Welcome to Patriot Park, a sprawling site an hour’s drive from Moscow that has come to be known as Russia’s “military Disneyland.”

Army-2015 2.png

Opened by Russian President Vladimir Putin last month, the $368 million theme park — so the Kremlin hopes — will become an important element in what authorities call vital “military-patriotic work with young people” by the time it is fully operational in 2017. Mr. Putin used the opportunity at the opening of the theme park to announce that Russia would add 40 intercontinental ballistic missiles to its massive nuclear arsenal this year.

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The Secret Agents Who Stake Out the Ugliest Corners of the Internet

The Atlantic reports on the Agents whose job is to find the real threats amongst all that trolling out there on the Interwebs:

When President Obama launched his Twitter account in May, people noticed his rapid accumulation of followers, a silly back-and-forth with President Clinton, but also something more serious: the number of hostile and threatening messages directed at the president.

Dallas DA - CPA Visits U.S. Secret Service

Sifting through those messages to determine which, if any, need to be taken seriously is the responsibility of the Secret Service Internet Threat Desk, a group of agents tasked with identifying and assessing online threats to the president and his family. The first part of this mission—finding threats—is in many ways made easier by the Internet: all you have to do is search! Pulling up every tweet which uses the words “Obama” and “assassinate” takes mere seconds, and the Secret Service has tried to make it easier for people to draw threats to its attention by setting up its own Twitter handle, @secretservice, for users to report threatening messages to.

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Big Pharma Wants Mutants – Their DNA Could Be Worth Billions

Mystique - X-MenIf you’re a mutant I fear for you: the drug companies want your DNA and will do anything to get it, per BloombergBusiness:

Steven Pete can put his hand on a hot stove or step on a piece of glass and not feel a thing, all because of a quirk in his genes. Only a few dozen people in the world share Pete’s congenital insensitivity to pain. Drug companies see riches in his rare mutation. They also have their eye on people like Timothy Dreyer, 25, who has bones so dense he could walk away from accidents that would leave others with broken limbs. About 100 people have sclerosteosis, Dreyer’s condition.

Both men’s apparent superpowers come from exceedingly uncommon deviations in their DNA. They are genetic outliers, coveted by drug companies Amgen, Genentech, and others in search of drugs for some of the industry’s biggest, most lucrative markets.

Their genes also have caused the two men enormous suffering.

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Cool at 13, Adrift at 23

Call it the revenge of the nerds if you will, but middle school cool kids who were cool tend to be left behind by their less cool peers according to a study reported by the New York Times:

At 13, they were viewed by classmates with envy, admiration and not a little awe. The girls wore makeup, had boyfriends and went to parties held by older students. The boys boasted about sneaking beers on a Saturday night and swiping condoms from the local convenience store.

Kids will be kids!

They were cool. They were good-looking. They were so not you.

Whatever happened to them?

“The fast-track kids didn’t turn out O.K.,” said Joseph P. Allen, a psychology professor at the University of Virginia. He is the lead author of a new study, published this month in the journal Child Development, that followed these risk-taking, socially precocious cool kids for a decade. In high school, their social status often plummeted, the study showed, and they began struggling in many ways.

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The Fermi Paradox: Where Are All The Aliens?

Now that Yuri Milner has thrown $100 million towards the search for aliens, Tim Urban ponders just why there isn’t anybody out there at Quartz. Where are all the aliens, dammit!

Everyone feels something when they’re in a really good starry place on a really good starry night and they look up and see this:

Photo: Joe Parks (CC)

Photo: Joe Parks (CC)

Some people stick with the traditional—feeling struck by the epic beauty or blown away by the insane scale of the universe. Personally, I go for the old “existential meltdown followed by acting weird for the next half hour.” But everyone feels something.

Physicist Enrico Fermi felt something too—“Where is everybody?”

A really starry sky seems vast—but all we’re looking at is our very local neighborhood. On the very best nights, we can see up to about 2,500 stars (roughly one hundred-millionth of the stars in our galaxy), and almost all of them are less than 1,000 light years away from us (or 1% of the diameter of the Milky Way).

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