Monday, August 31, 2009

World falling apart

Increasingly isolated in a virtual world, the people fear authenticity even as they crave it.

Except in the young, the fear usually prevails over the craving until something happens to make life fall apart.

Following the pattern experienced by Cindy Sheehan, the fundamental corruption of first one, then all of our civilization's major institutions becomes transparent.

I have seen this many times in various areas of activism.

Someone discovers that the pharmaceutical industry, or the music industry, or the oil industry, or organized religion, or Big Science, or the food industry is shockingly corrupt, but still believes in the basic soundness of the system as a whole.

Eventually, in a natural process of radicalization, they discover that the rot is endemic to all of these and more.

Each institution supports, affirms, and draws its own legitimacy from the others.

So we discover eventually that the wrongness permeates every institution, and we desire to find and uproot its source.

As activists for the truth, we are midwives to this process.

It is not quite true that no one heeds the boy's cry that the emperor is naked.

Those who are ready to hear will hear, and they are made ready when their world crumbles.

The exposing of all that is wrong serves an important purpose in guiding people from the old world to the threshold of a new - but only to the threshold, not across it.

To enter into the new world requires that we recover the tools of world-creation: first and foremost, the power of word.

A nicer term for a "ubiquitous matrix of lies" would be a "ubiquitous matrix of stories."

I am not suggesting that we abdicate the creative power of language.

Language is an essential means to coordinate human activity, for beauty as well as for destruction.

The stories we tell with words unite masses of people toward a common goal, and assign the meanings and roles necessary to attain it.

To be sure, images, music, and art, both representational and non-representational, contribute to the weaving of a story, especially evoking the emotional energy that powers it, but information is indispensable as well.

In a new world we will not cease to tell the story of what is and what shall be, but we will become conscious of our storytelling.

The sequel to this will explore what I call "storyteller consciousness" on a cultural and personal level, so that we may prepare to tell the story of a more beautiful world, and to speak that world into existence as presidents and kings have spoken wars into existence for thousands of years.

As these old stories fall apart, the time ripens for new ones.

And the old stories are indeed falling apart, of which our increasing immunity to political and commercial speech is a symptom.

No more or less significant a symptom is the crumbling of our great social institutions - education, politics, medicine, money - that are themselves built of a matrix of stories.

When stories fall apart, the world falls apart.

As the crises of our age converge and infiltrate the fortresses we have erected to preserve the virtual world of euphemism and pretense, the world is falling apart for more and more people at once.

The stories that have defined us and bound us are dying.

We sense, as counterpart to the existential anxiety that comes as the old world and our identity within it disintegrates, an invigorating newness close at hand.

So let us cease to be afraid as we stand at the threshold.

It is time to learn the technologies, linguistic and otherwise, of world-creation.

C. Eisenstein

Sunday, August 30, 2009


You only make changes when you are ready to make changes

When you are not ready to make changes you do not listen

Or maybe you listen but you do not hear

You do not bring things into focus

You do not wish to stop what you are doing

You are of course too busy

And best of all you do not need to change

You are in denial

When you are ready to change suddenly you will hear

When you are open to realise there is a problem

You admit to that problem or at least you want to try to understand what it is

Often arguing that it is not as others see

When you do see and accept then there is a chance to fix it

Fixing problems is not always easy as it involves changing

Changing our behaviour

Accepting responsibility for our actions

Seeing them as others see them

Admitting that we are not perfect

Yes for some even believe that they are close to perfect

Funny one that

True too as many have very peculiar perceptions about themselves

Perceptions that drive them to insist that they are right

Change is so hard for so many

Shame because change often allows us to move on to better times while stubborn resistance causes us to keep on experiencing the same problems

Nature will just keep giving us the same or similar problems

We all know people who keep on having "bad luck"

Is it really luck?

It might seem that way as they tell it however usually it is nature stopping us giving us the chance to change

Change is a way to move on, maybe the only way

Can you change?

Nature does not allow us to continue indefinitely with our illusions

Nature will bring change to our lives where we are obliged to take stock of what we are doing

So often once through the crisis people go back to what they were doing before

Guess what nature will return and oblige them to reconsider their behaviour
Changes and change are a fact of life and those who resist will keep having same problems
Consider change a friend one that allows us to move on

Saturday, August 29, 2009

2009 - Crop circle season

The 2009 crop circle season was prolific with numerous crop circles appearing in many diverse places

As is often the case many appeared in Wiltshire England, which is also a county of historical interest with places such as Stonehenge, Averbury and others being of note

Over seventy crop circles appeared in Wlitshire this year and the following extract from an article by Amely Greeven is provocative


"There is credible, detailed research available that shows what's been observed and measured before, during, and after the formations appear, and it's all fascinating.

For example, it's unanimously accepted by those who bother to look closely that while man made copycat formations do exist, they are easy to spot; the majority of formations are not man made.

See crop circle researcher and author Janet Ossebaard's very practical breakdown of the biophysical abnormalities in the crop and soil here.

Meanwhile, the Wiltshire Crop Circle Study Group send anonymous samples to the UK's major agricultural labs and consistently receive results of distinct changes in both plant structure and soil composition after crop circles.

There's also plenty of material on the electromagnetic energy that may be flattening the crop into these elaborate patterns.

Move to the unavoidable subject of extra-terrestrials and UFOs and the conversation gets really long.

I'll just say that perhaps different brains make different models in order to comprehend phenomena that's unknown to them, and all are as real as each other.

You say extra celestial, I say prana; we both see dancing balls of light.

Other debates focus on the "whats." What is the hidden message in the glyphs -- and will we decipher it in time?

It can be quite crack-the-code exciting.

But try too hard to decode, translate, and semiotically read the symbols and you risk losing the essence of what they're about.

A child, frankly, can understand the symbolism of the crop circles, because they trigger an instant experience.

For example, looking at a perfect geometrical image, which is what many of the formations are, will deliver an instant understanding of something profound.

At some universal level of reality, even if it's far below your chaotic reality, you know that everything is balanced and in the right order.

You don't have to understand "how" geometry works.

You don't have to know the significance of twelve arms of the mandala versus ten.

Like hearing notes in a tuneful chord, you immediately experience the harmony as a felt experience inside yourself when you see it depicted visually.


Likewise with the images of nature, the cosmos, and symbols from ancient civilizations that have been coming up in this year's pantheon of crop glyphs.

Taken together, they create a larger theme that Janet Ossebaard terms, "2009: Year of the Apocalypse," where apocalypse means the great revealing, or an end to secrets and an end to living in a state of disconnect.

That's good to know.

But as potent as these signs may be, it's the individual's experience of the crop formations that has the power to bridge that disconnect, not the rational understanding of them.

Of far more interest to me are the "whys."

Why are these forms appearing?

Why here in this area?

And most significantly, why are people coming to them?

There are no right answers here, only insights.

What I've witnessed is that most people who've been touched by these happenings, whether they've been sitting, sharing, or touring around the barley swirls or attending the impressive "Crop Circle Conference" hosted by the Wiltshire study group two weekends ago, don't want to nail a definitive answer about their raison d'être.

They're simply drawn to experiencing the ineffable for themselves"

Amely Greeven

Friday, August 28, 2009

Long beautiful legs

Might be an act of God to some

To others something to admire

For many suggestive of sexual promise

Some women would be jealous

However when in view few will feel no emotion at all

Funny thing the human body by turns fat and thin are in depending on the culture

Although today thanks to the strenuous efforts of the media and fashion industries a global consensus is emerging
Rake thin women are the chosen shape of the industry
Ugly to the point of grotesque
So for a while this that or the other shape might prevail

Beautiful legs though are always in

Legs, long legs are the envy of many

Jealousy won't change the length of your legs

So better change your thoughts instead

And let us all be grateful then that the fashion and media industries cannot take away the pleasure of beautiful legs!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

History of money

Many people think that money has always existed and therefore it always will


Human beings have lived on this planet for hundreds of thousands of years of years without using money.

When they were hungry they ate.

When they were thirsty they drank.

Whatever was available to anyone was available to everyone

It wasn't paradise, because food was scarce, and growing populations were eventually forced by this scarcity into a competitive struggle for life

First came the invention of agriculture, and the consequent need to defend the land or property on which crops were grown
Although this gave communities more stability and growth, agriculture and animal husbandry could not by themselves supply everything which they needed too develop cultures.

For this they needed to associate with other communities and pool their resources.

But in the new culture of property there was never again to be such freedom to take whatever was available

And so we began the exchange of products known as trade.

And although some quite advanced bronze age societies managed to trade very well by using barter (e.g Egyptians), it was a supremely awkward way to conduct transactions

With the advent of the Iron Age, cheap metal was for the first time plentiful, and coinage was slowly introduced to facilitate the trading process
Civilisation has since grown up on the back of this trade, whose sophistication was made possible by the invention of money.
To the modern mind therefore, civilisation relies money
This is a misunderstanding
In fact it is mainly trade which relies on money

Civilisation relies on distribution of material goods certainly, but distribution is not the same thing as trade just as to give is not the same as to sell

Modern industrial society has given us the means to free ourselves forever from that scarcity which has always dogged our forebears

Money is no longer a necessary or logical feature of society, and only a tiny minority benefit from its presence

Over the course of history many things become obsolete

Question when will money?

Possibly when society breaks down from the incoherence of current policies which benefit the few

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Mmmmm - 67

All change ( of position, substance, or form) is the result of causes

there is no such thing as absolute chance

Nothing can happen for no reason at all for nothing exists in isolation

Everything is part of an intricate web of causal interconnections and interactions

The keynote of nature is harmony:

Every action is automatically followed by an equal and opposite reaction

Which sooner or later rebounds upon the originator of the initial act

Thus all our thoughts and deeds will eventually bring us 'fortune' or 'misfortune'

According to the degree to which they were harmonious or disharmonious

In the long term, perfect justice prevails in nature

D. Pratt

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tamiflu effects

More than half of children taking the swine flu drug Tamiflu experience side effects such as nausea and nightmares.

Studies of 1003 children showed that 51 to 53 percent had one or more side effects from the medication.

The most common side effect was nausea (29 percent), followed by stomach pain or cramps (20 percent) and problems sleeping (12 percent).

Almost one in five had a “neuropsychiatric side effect,” such as inability to think clearly, nightmares and “behaving strangely.”

The World Health Organization has said healthy patients who catch swine flu do not need to be treated with Tamiflu.

Antiviral drugs should be used in patients who are severely ill or those in high-risk groups including the under fives and pregnant women, it said.

The cost of the drug and the potential for resistance were taken into account by the expert panel.

But the UK government said it was taking a "safety first" approach by offering antivirals to everyone

Please note that the vast majority of deaths related to swine flu are in people who had secondary conditions, meaning they were already weak or ill from other causes

Question was it the administration of Tamiflu that acted as the catalyst for their deaths?

We will never know because no investigation of this situation will be undertaken

However in Japan

The Japanese government has warned doctors that Tamiflu, the drug being stockpiled around the world as a defence against a bird flu pandemic, should not be prescribed to teenagers for fear that it can lead to bizarre and self-destructive behaviour.

Tokyo’s Ministry of Health and Welfare today instructed the Japanese distributor of the drug to include a warning not to give the drug to patients aged between 10 and 19, after reports that at least 18 Japanese children taking Tamiflu have died as a result of irrational behaviour

An ongoing saga where slowly it is being understood that Tamiflu has known and unknown sideffects

That several of these side effects are serious and not fully understood, by the public at least

Apart from anything else Tamilfu is not specific to the current strain of swine flu

As such it is not offering anything other than a possible reduction in the time affected

Tamiflu offers no protection from any new or evolving strains of flu

Why in such a situation, apart from political advantage, would any government offer or use this product?

Could it be that the creation of fear is on someones agenda?

Could it be that some are making huge profits from this situation?

Of course they are

So better focus on your own defences

The best defence against all flu strains is still a healthy immune system

Do not take flu shots

Strengthen your immune system

Monday, August 24, 2009

What a farce

Experts warned dispersal of Tamiflu would do more harm than good

The government rejected advice from its expert advisers on swine flu, who said there was no need for the widespread use of Tamiflu and suggested that the public should simply be told to take paracetamol.

An independent panel set up by the Department of Health warned ministers that plans to make the stockpiled drug widely available could do more harm than good, by helping the flu virus to develop resistance to the drug.

But ministers pressed ahead with a policy of mass prescription, fearing the public would not tolerate being told that the millions of doses of Tamiflu held by the state could not be used during a pandemic, one of the committee members has told the Guardian.

It was felt ... it would simply be unacceptable to the UK population to tell them we had a huge stockpile of drugs but they were not going to be made available, Professor Robert Dingwall, a member of the Committee on Ethical Aspects of Pandemic Influenza, said.

Today one of the country's foremost flu experts called for the national helpline to be shut down to stop hundreds of thousands of doses of Tamiflu going out in an unregulated way, which could render it useless when a more dominant strain returns in the autumn.

As it became clear that the current outbreak only had mild symptoms, the committee recommended that antivirals should only be given to those in high risk categories, like pregnant women or people with existing respiratory illnesses.

It suggested the government explain to people that they would not be given medicine they did not need and should use off-the- shelf flu treatments.

There were discussions within the Health Protection Authority and the Department of Health, once it became clear that swine flu was a relatively mild infection, about whether to reserve antivirals for high-risk groups and to advise the general population to treat themselves with paracetamol or ibuprofen, said Dingwall, director of the Institute for Science and Society at Nottingham University.

Some people wanted to take a long-term view of the risk of resistance developing and to seek to preserve the effectiveness of antivirals for the next pandemic, which may be more severe.

Last month, the government launched the national pandemic flu service which authorised more than 511,000 courses of Tamiflu and Relenza treatment during its first fortnight in operation.

Oxford University researchers have warned that antivirals are not a "magic bullet" against flu, and that resistance to the drug could develop, making it useless to fight any future and potentially more serious pandemic flu strain.

The concern was seconded by flu expert Hugh Pennington, emeritus professor at Aberdeen University, who called for the national flu line to be shut down.

I am concerned about the vast amount of Tamiflu that is going out almost unregulated, he told the Guardian.

We are increasing the possibility that the flu will become resistant sooner or later.

At the moment there is no desperate need for Tamiflu.

We should be reconsidering its issue, rather than encouraging its use.

"I think we should stop the national pandemic flu service.

It was put there for an outbreak of far higher mortality than we have.

If you get a resistant strain that becomes dominant in the autumn, Tamiflu will then be useless."

A senior government adviser, Prof Peter Openshaw, said the government was told during the early stages of the current outbreak of the "significant side effects" that Tamiflu was causing in some people.

"I think there was, in some quarters, a slight over-optimism about the acceptability of prophylactic medication and its effectiveness," said Openshaw, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies.

Maybe some of the less clinical scientific advisers perhaps slightly over-inflated expectations of the ease and efficiency of antiviral treatment.

Many of us who do clinical work and are clinically trained had a bit more of a jaundiced view of how things may turn out."

Openshaw said antivirals were effective only if used within 36 to 48 hours of symptoms developing.

If the treatment is delayed they are relatively ineffective.

On the other hand, we do have this large stockpile available and I think there is an advantage in trying to treat cases early, in order to reduce the severity and the number of patients who end up needing hospital care."

Such a policy could "blunt" a spike of cases, reducing pressure on health resources, he said.

The pandemic ethical committee was set up at the request of Sir Liam Donaldson, the chief medical officer, to assist planners and policy makers with ethical aspects of decisions they face in a pandemic, such as how to allocate scarce drugs when many people are sick.

At its last meeting in May, when it was already becoming clear that the current H1N1 strain was causing a relatively mild disease in most people, the committee discussed the government's antiviral strategy.

Members feared that the widespread use of antivirals in the current outbreak was incompatible with the principle of minimising harm, minutes from the meeting show.

The current outbreak did not alter the risk of a more serious flu pandemic developing in the future.

There would be ethical concerns if the blanket use of antivirals compromised their effectiveness in the future.

Members said it was important to use antivirals in the most appropriate way, not just because the government had a stockpile of the drugs.

The committee called on the government to explain to the public that they were no cure for flu.

The committee concluded that it would be appropriate to offer antivirals as treatment only for those in risk groups, or with underlying conditions.

In a statement, the Department of Health said: "Protecting the public is the prime concern of our strategy, which has been shaped by advice from the most eminent specialists from the beginning.

"There is still doubt about how swine flu affects people – a safety-first approach is the best approach.

This means offering antivirals when required.

However, we will keep this policy under review as we learn more about the virus and its effects.

This is in line with the views of both the Committee on Ethical Aspects of Pandemic Influenza and of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies


One other aspect of this situation is the age of government Tamilfu supplies

Nowhere is there any acknowledgment that current stocks of Tamiflu are due to pass their "use by" date in the very near future

At this point these stocks would have had to be thrown away

Did someone somewhere think that they had better be used.....................and political mileage gained?

As it is the Government is now ordering millions more units

And who is deriving most benefit from this farce one might ask?

Could it be that someone somewhere is making lots of money?

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Do you suffer from desynchronosis?

You know, chronic tiredness, disorientation, stomach upsets, and stinging red-eyes?

Jet lag, as it's more commonly known, can consign you to the zombie zone, usually populated only by new parents.

There's a fairly obvious and simple one, of course: don't fly.

But acknowledging the fact that people do fly to go on holiday, or have to fly for work or to see family members jet lag is an issue for many

Do you avoid alcohol and caffeine and max out on tomato juice and water, as recommended on the NHS website?

Do you stay up all night before a long flight or starve yourself to trick your body into thinking it's in another time zone?

Do you take homeopathic pills or ingest the extract from the bark of a French pine tree for seven days, as advocated by another recent medical survey?

Or do you simply hit the sleeping pills?

Whatever you do

Stay up and go to bed at your normal time in local time when you get there

Better drink only water while flying

Sleep and doze if you can

Feel no fear the pilot does not want to die either

Flying is much safer than crossing your local roads at home

Flying West to East is tougher

North to South or vica versa not too bad at all

If aircraft noises trouble you then play some music, wear earphones

Whatever your system or approach make the trip an acceptable one psychologically

Remember you are going somewhere different, wherever it is regard this with pleasure

Feel good about the change however long or short

If coming back then take the good memories with you, leave the others behind

It is your state of mind that determines how you experience travel

All too often we let negative media stories influence our experience of travel

Create your own stories

Make them fun and happy ones
Being tired is OK when you let yourself accept that it is OK
Modern travel for all it's pains can also be OK
Your choice
Oh, and desynchronosis is fine too
Just your state of mind is all

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Two problems

One is over consumption

And another is overproduction.

Half the world eats too much

The other half has too many babies.

There is just too much human flesh for a healthy planet

Yet few have considered what this means for our future

And fewer still who have ever been brave enough to show the future as it really will be.

Instead the future is shown as an age where we live ever longer

Where we enjoy good health into old age

Yet around us more and more people are on medications

More are suffering from stress

And yes more and more are fat going on obese

No one mentions the problems caused by the fatness.

Or the babies.

The UN has predicted that half of all adults will be obese by 2050.

Meanwhile, the United Nations reckons that by then the world’s population will have risen by 40 per cent to 9.1 billion in the same year

That’s a lot of extra mouths to feed, even if they don't eat as we do in the West

So why do we keep on eating so much?

Birthing is declining in the Western world and as we know increasing in many poorer parts of the world

In the poorer parts of the world if women were better educated, or in some places educated at all, then birth rates would fall as we have seen over and over

Regarding the other problem so many are made utterly miserable by their inability to override their instinct to eat.

The answer is that our bodies are hardwired for life in an uncertain world, not the West in, 2009.

Our problem with babies and beer bellies is thanks to how ruthlessly our DNA was then honed for success.

Back in our native habitat, refusing food or refusing children would have been suicidal.

Both were, for various reasons, scarce.

Now both are overabundant.

Refusing them is the means to our survival.

But is it even possible for humans to override their instincts like that?

Of course, individuals have practised self-denial, but it’s not something we’ve ever undertaken as a collective project.

Until now.

The ONS report stated that one in five women in Britain is remaining childless — a trend repeated across the Western world.

What intrigued the authors was that current childlessness is different from the childlessness of the postwar years, when it was the poorest women, or those left single, who didn’t have children.

By contrast “present-day childlessness is occurring increasingly often among healthy females who are living within marriage or cohabiting”.

The more educated and wealthy a woman gets, the less likely she is to have children.

Although they could not ask directly, the statisticians were left wondering if increasing numbers of people are actively opting out of parenthood.

If so, they would be doing it for profoundly rational reasons.

Study after study on happiness levels shows that while marriage is excellent for mental well being, having children is not.

Happiness levels dip after the first born, and are not restored until the last child leaves home.

Sociologists accept this, but as Daniel Gilbert, Professor of Psychology at Harvard, says, those findings are very hard for the public “to swallow because they fly in the face of our most compelling intuitions”.

Children do not make us happy, although surveys also show we believe very strongly that they will.

What accounts for this parenting paradox?

Well, we are enslaved to our instincts.

When you ask parents exactly what it is they get from their children, they often explain it in terms of “fulfilment” or “selflessness”.

I do not exactly enjoy kneeling on the bathroom floor as I act as midwife to my daughter’s toilet activities, but I think, in the scheme of things, I am doing something meaningful.

Yet “fulfilment” and “selflessness” — the feelings may be real, but it’s the kind of vocabulary that shows it’s the DNA talking.

We are fulfilling a drive for our genes to repeat themselves, rather than seeking enjoyment in any rational sense.

Some of the childless women in the ONS study may be the first generation to conquer that instinct en masse.

It is interesting that it is the more educated women who seem better inclined to fight biology with reason, for a “post-instinct” kind of life (it is also one with more relaxing holidays).

Is it a coincidence that the risk factors for getting big with child — lack of education, jobs and other ways of honing higher reason — are the same as those for getting big with food?

At the obesity clinic, I talked to people just after they had had their gastric bands inserted, or, as they liked to think of them, “willpower” in the form of an artificial plastic clamp.

Overflowing their hospital chairs, breathless just from standing up, these people were used to society judging them to be weak.

They felt the same way about themselves.

They hated their bodies and their cravings for food.

Their instincts were killing them.

Since medieval times, the idea of the mind ruling the body has been nothing more than a diversion for philosophers.

Now, it’s an emergency.

Will we manage to live against our genetic drives?

What will that world look like?


Friday, August 21, 2009

Making relationships work

If there is one area in our lives where most of us struggle, it’s relationships.

That’s the bad news

The good news is that they can be improved.

It takes hard work and involvement

We learn how to have relationships from our parents

We learn quickly as young children when we meet and find ourselves with other young children

And for sure some of us are taught rather better than others

Without too much thinking some of us become controllers

Others followers

Others users even

Much has been written about how we should treat each other in these three major categories

What we should do or say

How we should behave

Maybe less written about is what we should not do

Being told to be gentler, kinder and more tolerant is fine but how?
Do not blame somebody else for the way you feel
Don’t to try to change the other person, we cannot change other people change your own responses and behaviour.
Try not to use the word ‘you’ replace it with the word ‘I’ and stop using the words ‘never’ and ‘always’
Don’t be defensive and stop sulking
Learn to accept an apology as well learning to apologise,
And if you love to control people then stop it let others be
Do not promise to do things that you have no intention of doing
Do not agree to meet at a certain time and then arrive late, show respect for yourself and others by being on time
Do not tell little white lies, ever they have a way of coming back to haunt you
Do not gossip about those who are not present unless it is to say something nice, in fact better to say nothing if you cannot think of anything nice to say
If you have bad manners then be warned we all notice bad manners and yes they do matter so ensure that you have good manners

Thursday, August 20, 2009


I can pass this examination

I am a wonderful person and will find love again

I am capable and deserve that pay rise

Are phrases that students, the love lorn and driven employees may say to themselves over and over again in the face of difficulty

Self-help books through the ages have encouraged people with low self-esteem to make positive self-statements

And so the idea of positive thinking has ever pushed these teachings on us

However this can be a bridge too far when the gap between reality and mantra is too wide

When one is too far away from the concept it can create the opposite effect

When your self esteem is really low then trying to pretend that you are superhero does not work

Since the 1960s psychologists have known that people are more accepting of ideas close to their own views and resistant to those that differ.

With regard to self-perception, if a person who believes they are reasonably friendly is told that they are extremely gregarious, they will probably accept the idea.

But if told they are socially aloof, the idea will most likely be met with resistance and doubt.

So it is not a big jump to see that positive self-statements cause negative moods in people with low self-esteem because they conflict with those people’s views of themselves.

When positive self-statements strongly conflict with self-perception, there is not mere resistance but a reinforcing of self-perception.

People who view themselves as unlovable find saying that they are lovable so unbelievable that it strengthens their own negative view rather than reversing it.

Given that many readers of self-help books that encourage positive self-statements are likely to suffer from low self-esteem, they may be worse than useless

Holding a positive image rather than a negative one is useful however it must be close enough to the persons self-esteem that it can do any good

If you suffer from low self-esteem be careful of those courses and books that ask you to reach too far

Of more use is to accept the reality that you have low self-esteem

Determine to change this

Find a course, job activity that allows you to address this situation

One step at a time

Check your progress

Move on to the next step

Take no heroic jumps they just bring more pain

One step at a time, just one at a time
And yes we can all move on from low self-esteem
The first and most important step is believing, really believing that you can
The next is finding activities and courses that allow you to address your issues
Building your self-esteem and giving you more confidence
Keep at it though perseverance and will power are needed here
No quick fix will work, work over time will fix it
Self-esteem is a funny thing as it relates to how you relate to reality
If you feel inadequate because you are not Prime Minister then a reality check is in order
Try not to compare yourself with others
Not with the most materially successful, or most attention seeking
If you need a role model then pick someone who has good human qualities
Understand that if you do the best you can every day then this is all that nature asks of us
True self-esteem is built on knowing this to be true
Knowing that you are becoming a better human being
One step at a time, just one at a time

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cutting calories

Cutting calories may delay the ageing process and reduce the risk of disease, a long-term study of monkeys suggests.

The benefits of calorie restriction are well documented in animals, but now the results have been replicated in a close relative of man over a lengthy period.

Over 20 years, monkeys whose diets were not restricted were nearly three times more likely to have died than those whose calories were counted.
Writing in Science, the US researchers hailed the "major effect" of the diet.
It involved reducing calorie intake by 30% while maintaining nutrition and appeared to impact upon many forms of age-related disease seen in monkeys, including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and brain atrophy.
Whether the same effects would be seen in humans is unclear, although anecdotal evidence so far suggests people on a long-term calorie-restricted diet have better cardiovascular health.
The precise mechanism is yet to be established: theories involve changes in the body's metabolism or a reduction in the production of "free radical" chemicals which can cause damage.
And here they are again
Seventy-six rhesus monkeys were involved in the trial, which began in 1989 and was expanded in 1994.
Half had their diets restricted, half were given free rein at feeding time.
The rate of cancers and cardiovascular disease in dieting animals was less than half of those permitted to eat freely.
While diabetes and problems with glucose regulation were common in monkeys who ate what they wanted, there were no cases in the calorie controlled group.
People would have to weigh up whether they are prepared to compromise their enjoyment of food for the uncertain promise of a longer life
Catherine CollinsBDA
In addition, while most brains shrink with age, the restricted diet appeared to maintain the volume of the brain at least in some regions.
In particular, the areas associated with movement and memory seemed to be better preserved.
Both motor speed and mental speed slow down with ageing, said Sterling Johnson, a neuroscientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine.
Those are the areas which we found to be better preserved.
We can't yet make the claim that a difference in diet is associated with functional change because those studies are still ongoing.
What we know so far is that there are regional differences in brain mass that appear to be related to diet."
Earlier this year, German researchers published findings from their study of elderly people which suggested that calorie reduction appeared to improve memory over a period of just three months.
Various studies on the positive effects of calorie restriction on the life spans of various organisms - from yeast to dogs - have been published over the last 70 years
But dieticians sounded a note of warning.
Monkeys may be a close relation but there are significant differences which means not everything we see in them can be translated to humans," said Catherine Collins, spokeswoman for the British Dietetic Association.
And there should be some serious reservations about cutting calories so dramatically, particularly for anyone under the age of 30.
Any such diet would need to be very balanced to avoid malnutrition, and it would be a long-term commitment.
People would have to weigh up whether they are prepared to compromise their enjoyment of food for the uncertain promise of a longer life, and a life which could be dogged by all sorts of problems - including osteoporosis."

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The key

Looking for the key?
The key to life

The key to advancing your consciousness that is

There are other keys for other things, however the key to life is the most important
And advancing our consciousness is the only way this can be found

The only way out of human toil

The only way to move towards genuine enlightenment

Yes the real key

Some might say this as impossible

Too many variables

Too many elements

Too many confusing ideas around

Yes that's all true

And yet

Since time immemorial we have been told

Know thyself

Yes we say but

Usually the but is because we have not really thought about this simple phrase

So if you want to find the key it is you

You are your own key

Nothing outside

Nothing mysterious

'Just' knowing yourself

No 'just' about it really because knowing ourselves truly is tough a very tough ask

And to do this requires discipline, courage, will power and hard work

Yes all of the above and then some

And where does this lead?

To greater peace of mind


Increasing love for all

And as a word of caution this is not weekend warrior work

It is constant 24/7 work for the rest of this life
And the work?
Finding our fears
Getting them out, looking at them
Searching for the truth of things
Learning humility
Accepting life as it is doing the best we can every day
Learning to know ourselves and that is where the key is

Monday, August 17, 2009

Problem solving

A type of dreamy sleep that occurs more frequently in the early morning is important for solving problems that cannot be easily answered during the day, a study has found.

The discovery could explain many anecdotal accounts of famous intellectuals who had wrestled with a problem only to find that they have solved it by the morning after a good night's sleep.

Scientists believe that a form of dreaming slumber called rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, when the brain becomes relatively active and the eyes flicker from side to side under closed eyelids, plays a crucial role in subconscious problem solving.

Dreams normally occur during REM sleep which occupies about a quarter of the total time spent asleep at night.

REM sleep alternates with deep sleep and occurs as four or five bouts of sleep that get progressively longer as the night turns into morning.

In a series of tests on nearly 80 people, the researchers found that REM sleep increases the chances of someone being able to successfully solve a new problem involving creative associations – finding an underlying pattern behind complex information.

The volunteers were asked in a morning session to solve a series of creative problems.
They were told to either sit on the problem until the afternoon by either resting and staying awake or by taking a nap monitored by the scientists to see whether it involved any REM sleep – it produces characteristic eye movements and brain-wave patterns.
In the afternoon, they were asked to solve the problems again.

Those people who had enjoyed REM sleep improved significantly, by about 40 per cent, while the other volunteers who had not had REM sleep showed little if any improvement, according to the study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The researchers suggest that it is not merely sleep itself, or the simple passage of time, that is important for the solving of a new problem, but the act of being able to fall into a state of REM sleep where the brain slips into a different kind of neural activity that encourages the formation of new nerve connections.

We found that for creative problems that you've already been working on, the passage of time is enough to find solutions.

However, for new problems, only REM sleep enhances creativity, said Sara Mednick of the University of California San Diego, who led the study.


Yes but

No, yes and

Since time immemorial sleep and meditation have been used to induce results in solving problems

Go to sleep thinking about the problem and chances are you will have a result or insight first thing in the morning

Often this gets over looked or drowned out by our waking noises or rituals

What is happening is that our left brain sleeps during REM sleep

Relaxing the left brain hemisphere allows the right hemisphere to be heard and it is from here that insights arrive

Sleep is a good way to shut down the endless chatter of the left hemisphere

Technically we can say that we now know what is happening in the wiring department of our brains

Indeed the research above is all about wiring, what triggers what

Not about how it works

We do not have a clue as to how the right brain arrives at insights or answers to problems

As with so much modern research we are learning what is going on where but not what gives the insight

To go further we could do worse than look at occult teaching

This states clearly that these insights can only be approached once we control our minds

Control the left brain hemisphere that is

Shut it down, and this in left brain dominated people, read scientists occurs when they sleep

This requires that we acknowledge that reductionist logic cannot help us as it is stuck in mind

This is a step too far for many scientists

Who usually have highly developed left brain hemispheres

Reductionist logic requires highly developed left brain hemispheres

Scientists who normally operate in this area have no clue how to let go or operate in their right hemispheres

So the battle continues

These insights come from our right brain hemisphere

In truth insights come from our higher self, which is accessed through the right brain hemisphere

They are accurate because the higher self has access to any knowledge it needs

It is not reductionist

It is not logic based

It is truth based

So the intriguing question is how will left brain scientists deal with this?

Currently many deny that there is any such thing as a higher self

Others insist that logic is the only scientific way

Fortunately there is a new generation coming along who are more open

Notice open not open minded because what we are talking about is beyond mind

From these come insights often as a result of getting ideas from our ancestors for whom such questions were answered long ago

Socrates, Plato, Pythagoras all were initiates and as such were well versed in accessing the so called hidden realms

Modern man has a way to go before he reaches such ease of access

At least some are now beginning to ask the right questions
To try and go beyond mind

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Women and happiness

Researchers discovered women feel most confident and happy with their love life and body shape shortly before they reach 30.

It is also the period in their life when they enjoy the best sex – but the happiness is relatively short lived.

Because by the time they have turned 30 they start worrying about growing old and developing grey hair and wrinkles.

The age of 28 has been pinpointed as the time in a woman's life their hair looks the best, body shape is at its peak and confidence is at an all-time high.

The security of job, having a steady income, being in a relationship and having strong friendships all help create the perfect point in our lives when everything comes together.

Reaching and surpassing your twenties no longer triggers the downward spiral of looks and self-confidence.

The survey of 25-65 year olds recorded the age at which women were most content in 12 key areas of their life.

According to the results, women are happiest in their career at 29 and most content with their relationships one year later at 30

The research found two thirds of women feel they age more quickly than men,

and the women polled rated their appearance a measly five out of 10.

But drinking from the fountain of youth doesn't come cheap as the average woman will spend £600 every year, or more than £49 a month, on beauty products in a bid to stay looking young.
The research also found women spend over five days a year on their beauty routine – an average of 22 minutes every day.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Something else on sleep

Some people seem happy with four or five hours, although most people would feel sleep-deprived on less than six.

Others need a good seven or eight hours of sleep and adolescents are renowned for extended kips.

So how much sleep is necessary for a healthy mind and body, and does this amount truly need to vary between people and age groups?

The latest study into sleep may help to resolve the issue with the discovery that certain people in the population carry the smallest of genetic mutations in a gene that appears to play a significant role in deciding just how much sleep human beings need.

Scientists studied an extended family in California and found that a mother and her daughter shared a life-long habit of rising in the very early hours of the morning with no apparent ill-effects.

They routinely went to bed between 10.30pm and 11pm and got up between 4am and 4.30am.

The researchers took blood samples from all members of the family and analysed their DNA for any signs that could explain this unusual behaviour.

The tests revealed that the mother and her daughter did in fact share a tiny "point mutation" in a gene known as hDEC2, which is known to affect the regulation of other genes and has been implicated in the control of sleeping patterns in animals.

Other members of the family who followed a more conventional sleeping pattern were not found to have inherited the same mutation.

These family members typically required the normal eight hours or so of sleep a night instead of the five to six hours of the mother and daughter.

Just to make sure that the hDEC2 mutation was truly involved in this unusual sleeping pattern, rather than a coincidental occurrence in the two women, the scientists went on to create genetically-engineered mice with the same point mutation to the same gene.

These mice also exhibited unusually short patterns of sleep, a feature not seen in ordinary mice.

The implication from the study would be that there is a genetically-wired system in our body to tell us how much sleep do we need, explained Ying-Hui Fu, Professor of Neurology at the University of California in San Francisco, the study's head.

Yet, we really don't know anything about how this is done.

This discovery provides an opportunity for us to begin to probe into the pathway regulating our sleep quantity and need

It is not clear at the present time how this mutation can lead to short sleep quantity.

This is one of the areas that we are pursuing actively," she said.

The scientific evidence suggesting that different people are genetically wired to require shorter than-average periods of sleep goes back many years

In 1999, for instance, scientists identified the existence of a gene – or more specifically an inherited mutation within a gene – that appeared to confer something called familial advanced sleep-phase syndrome.

This is an inherited condition where people tend to go to bed early and get up early, which can also happen when people abandon normal sleeping routines, such as at the weekend and when on holiday.

People who exhibit this all the time are known as "morning larks", to distinguish them from "night owls" at the other extreme who routinely go to bed late and get up late.

The scientists in this study, led by Christopher Jones of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, did not actually find the gene or its mutation – they could only show that it must exist in the 29 people from three different families that they had studied.

People with advanced sleep-phase syndrome, however, still sleep for the usual seven and a half to eight hours a night, it's just that their daily routine or "circadian rhythm" is shifted.

Scientists believe that genetic mutations can also occur in the genes influencing this aspect of the 24-hour sleep-wake cycle.

Sleep is a product of both circadian rhythm and another controlling factor that, put simply, measures the amount of sleep we have had.

When we need sleep, this "homeostatic" mechanism makes us sleepy; when we've had enough sleep, it tells us to wake up.

Professor Fu and her team suspect that the mutation they have found plays a role in the homeostatic mechanism that helps to control the amount of sleep we need.

What the latest study tells us is that the actual quantity of sleep needed is partly under genetic control – and that is the result of who our parents were, rather than what we do each day.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Death and sleep

Death and sleep are fundamentally the same

Not different except in degree

Sleep is an imperfect death and death is a perfect sleep

This is the main key to all the teachings on death

Death is not the opposite of Life

But actually is one of the modes of living

A modification of consciousness

A change from one phase of living to others in subservience to karmic destiny

Our bodies are in a state of constant change

Their atoms are in a continuous process of renewal . .

Even while imbodied we are living in the midst of innumerable tiny deaths

FSO 535-6 - G de Purucker

Thursday, August 13, 2009

So true

For self mastery is the end aim of all rulership

No man can safely remain ungoverned who has not learned to govern himself

And at the present stage of development, that is the hardest task that can be given to him

It is easy to command others

It is hard to force obedience from oneself

In the measure that a man has mastered himself

.......................and in that measure only

Is he qualified to govern others

Were the present rulers of the masses able to govern themselves

We should again have the golden age

M Heindel

Unfortunately we are a long way from having rulers that even come close to mastering themselves
Hence the rule of greed and self interest predominates around the planet

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Curious island

A drug originating on Easter Island, the mysterious South Pacific home of a lost statue-building people, may become the first substance to slow down human ageing, new research indicates.

Rapamycin, a pharmacological product used to prevent rejection in organ transplants, has been found to extend the lifespan of mice by up to 38 per cent, raising the possibility that it may delay ageing in people.

Hitherto a matter for science fiction, the idea of an anti-ageing drug which would allow people to prolong their natural lifespan and also to avoid age-related diseases is now being seriously considered for the first time as a result of the findings by American researchers.

Rapamycin is a bacterial product originally found in a soil sample from Easter Island, the Polynesian extinct volcano famous for its monumental statues erected hundreds of years ago by the island people, and known in the region as Rapa Nui – hence the drug's name.

Originally developed as an anti-fungal agent, rapamycin was soon found to have powerful immuno-suppressant properties and thus be valuable for preventing rejection of transplanted organs.

It was also found to delay the ageing process when used experimentally with three sets of lower organisms: yeast, nematode worms and fruit flies.

Now, however, it has been shown to affect the ageing of mice – the first time that this has ever been shown with a mammal.

A team of 14 researchers from three institutions, led by David Harrison from the Jackson Laboratory at Bar Harbor in Maine, fed rapamycin to mice late in their life – at 600 days of age – and showed that both the median and maximal lifespan of treated animals were considerably extended.

Currently, the only way to extend the life of a rodent is by severely restricting its diet, so this marks the first report of a pharmacological intervention that lengthens the life of mammals – with clear implications for humans.

The results, published today in an online paper on the website of the journal Nature, are attracting considerable excitement, and an accompanying article in Nature by two of the world's leading experts on the ageing process, Matt Kaeberlein and Brian K Kennedy from the University of Washington, Seattle, headed "A Midlife Longevity Drug?" openly asks the question: "Is this the first step towards an anti-ageing drug for people?"

Their answer is that it may well be.

Dr Kaeberlein and Dr Kennedy first issued a warning to people not to start taking rapamycin at once in the hope of prolonging their lives – "the potential immuno-suppressive effects of this compound alone are sufficient to caution against this," they advised.

But they added: On the basis of animal models, however, it is interesting to consider that rapamycin ... might prove useful in combating many age-associated disorders.

Also ... it may be possible to develop pharmacological strategies that provide the health and longevity benefits without unwanted side-effects.

So, although extending human lifespan with a pill remains the purview of science fiction writers for now, the results of Harrison et al provide a reason for optimism that even during middle age, there's still time to change the road you're on

Rapamycin was known to have an influence on ageing in the lower organisms by disrupting the influence of an enzyme known as TOR, which regulates cell growth.

Dr Harrison and colleagues found that this was also the case with mice, and found that rapamycin feeding could extend mouse lifespan even when started late in life.

The maximum lifespan went up from 1,094 days to 1,245 days for female mice, and from 1,078 to 1,179 for male mice – a striking increase of life expectancy of 38 per cent for females and 28 per cent for males.

Dr Harrison and his colleagues conclude: "An effective anti-ageing intervention that could be initiated later than the midpoint of the lifespan could prove to be especially relevant to clinical situations, in which the efficacy of anti-ageing interventions would be particularly difficult to test in younger volunteers.

Our data justify special attention to the role of the TOR pathway in control of ageing in mammals and in the pathogenesis of late-life illnesses."

Also known as sirolimus, rapamycin was first discovered as a product of the bacterium Streptomyces hygroscopicus, which was found in an Easter Island soil sample.

Probably the world's most remote and least-visited inhabited island, Easter Island is globally famous for its haunting monumental stone statues of human faces, set up around the coast, known as Moai.

Weighing as much as 80 tonnes, they were carved by a lost people, whose society may have collapsed, according to the American environmental geographer Jared Diamond, when they overexploited their forests.

Volcanic, hilly and now treeless, and a territory of Chile, the island is situated 2,180 miles west of Chile itself and 1,290 miles east of Pitcairn Island; its European name comes from its discovery on Easter Sunday 1722, by the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen. Its oldest known Polynesian name is thought to be Te Pito O Te Henua, meaning "the navel of the world". Rapa Nui is a name given to it by Tahitian sailors in the 19th century.


The statutes are from Lemurian times

The era that predated the Atlantean times

Lemuria being a continent covering a huge area of what is now the Pacific ocean

At that time Easter island was the high point of a mountain chain, which sank during the earth quakes and cataclysms that ended Lemuria

Many of the statutes were life size

Yes the people who built them were giants by today's standards

No there were no great forests or trees

Just giant size people who also knew how to move their colossal statutes without pulleys or wood based contraptions
Even the carving of such hard rock would pose problems for us today

Lemuria has left us with several amazing artifices none of which are identified with that period in our history, which ended literally millions of years ago

Yes many a puzzle for us

And that soil producing these unusual qualities too

How interesting