Nelson Mandela: 1918 – 2013

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela From CNN: Word of Nelson Mandela’s death spread quickly across the United States, bringing with it a mix of reverence and grief for a man who was born in South Africa but in the end belonged to the ...

The Coca-Cola Co. Does Not need Atlanta

After Martin Luther King Jr. won the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize, plans for an interracial celebration in still-segregated Atlanta were not initially well supported by the city’s business elite until J. Paul Austin intervened. In his memoir, activist and former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young wrote: J. Paul Austin, the chairman and CEO of Coca-Cola, and ...

Here We Shall Drag Them

The Harpies’ first appearance in Greek literature is incongruously charming. For Hesiod, they are goddesses of the scudding storm clouds, “lovely-haired,” keeping pace “on their swift wings with the blasts of the winds and the birds.” Later the nastier implications of their name “Snatchers” take over. The classical Harpies are monsters, birds with women’s faces, ...

Anna Nicole Smith’s Guess Campaign

From BuzzFeed, “The early ’90s ad campaign that made Anna Nicole a household name. In 1993, Anna Nicole Smith secured a contract to replace supermodel Claudia Schiffer as the face of Guess. Although the struggles with her weight and substance abuse overshadowed the last years of her life, here is a look back at 20 ...

Democratize Science!

Let the public decide on the fate of 1% of our science budget. In the 19th century, Charles Darwin was just one of the many independent researchers who, not reliant on grants or constrained by the conservative pressures of anonymous peer review, did stunningly original work. That kind of freedom and independence has become almost ...

A Book for Burning?

[post_intro]John Maddox says of Rupert Sheldrake’s work, “I was so offended by it that I said and I said that while it’s wrong that book should be burned. In practice, if book burning were allowed this book would be a candidate. I think it’s dangerous that people should be allowed by our liberal societies to ...

Accessing the Mystic: The Via Negativa

[post_intro]What happens when a Cambridge-trained scientist and a revolutionary priest join forces to probe the mystery of spiritual experience? The answer lies in Accessing the Mystic, an unprecedented video featuring Dr. Rupert Sheldrake and Matthew Fox. Each drawing from his own tradition, these radical thinkers reveal how they traveled their respective paths — and ultimately ...

The Messiahs: Mithras, Osiris, and Apollonius

A long time ago, in a land far away, a child was born. He was the son of a god and a mortal woman, and he used his miraculous powers to do good and to serve others. Tragically, he was betrayed and was killed by his enemies. But ultimately he rose from death and rejoined ...

Edward Tufte

The Art of Data Visualization from PBS

Humans have a powerful capacity to process visual information, skills that date far back in our evolutionary lineage. And since the advent of science, we have employed intricate visual strategies to communicate data, often utilizing design principles that draw on these basic cognitive skills. In a modern world where we have far more data than ...

Brian Greene’s The Fabric of the Cosmos

PBS posted the full episodes of The Fabric of the Cosmos. A four-hour series based on the book by renowned physicist and author Brian Greene, takes us to the frontiers of physics to see how scientists are piecing together the most complete picture yet of space, time, and the universe. With each step, audiences will ...

I Died On the Operating Table Last Night

I was being wheeled into the operating room. The hospital staff were running along side the gurney. I had sustained a massive injury to my head and I was unconscious, probably in a coma. Somehow I was still hyperaware of everything that was going on around me and I knew that I could heal myself ...

Epigenetics and the Influence of Our Genes

Each mammalian cell has the same genes, yet performs distinct functions. This is achieved by epigenetic control of gene expression; the switching on and switching off of genes. This course will cover the principles of epigenetic control of gene expression, how epigenetic control contributes to cellular differentiation and development, and how it goes wrong in ...

Lamarck, Inheritance, and Insinct

Something has always troubled me about Darwin’s theory and even modern revisions of his work – there is still no explanation for instinct. Ethologists call instincts innate releasing mechanisms or IRM, which in layman’s terms means “we’ll use big fancy words because we just don’t know.” The most common definition is, “The mechanism by which ...

Jesus in the Underworld?

The Christian affirmation of belief in Jesus descent to Hades is in the Apostles Creed and in the so-called Athanasian Creed as well as being article III in the Anglican Thiny-Nine Articles. The Biblical origin for this belief which is a major and normative part of Christian tradition, seems to be based on a particular ...

Bilateral Symmetry in Embryos and Supermodels

Bilateral symmetry in an organism means that one half is roughly a mirror image of the other half. The plane of symmetry is the sagittal plane (vertically through the head and body, with one of each sense organ and limb pair on either side). It’s not a perfect match but it’s remarkably close. This symmetry ...

Sheldrake Responds to His Critics at TED

Response to the TED Scientific Board’s Statement Rupert Sheldrake March 18, 2013 I would like to respond to TED’s claims that my TEDx talk “crossed the line into pseudoscience”, contains ”serious factual errors” and makes “many misleading statements.” This discussion is taking place because the militant atheist bloggers Jerry Coyne and P.Z. Myers denounced me, ...

The Myth of Sisyphus

The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus A philosophical classic. If you were condemned to roll a boulder up a hill every day could you find meaning in that? If you could not find meaning what would you do? Without meaning in your life, would you commit suicide? Camus gets inside the head of Sisyphus ...

The Science Delusion @ TED

3/15 Update: The video on the TEDx YouTube channel was removed by TED. I downloaded a copy before they took it down and posted it to Vimeo (creative commons license). TED created a page where people are invited to debate the merits of their decision to remove the videos. The statement from TED reads, “After ...

Sheldrake Link Roundup – Jan 2013

The latest Sheldrake videos and podcasts… Videos Science Set Free @ California Institute of Integral Studies In this video, recorded in San Francisco on Sept. 7, 2012, Dr. Sheldrake speaks about his new book and answers audience questions at a presention sponsored by the California Institute of Integral Studies and held at the First Unitarian ...

Paranormal Phenomena by Simon Thorpe

This is a really interesting presentation originally made on the 15th of January 2013 to a group called “Incognu” which is an association of people interested in Cognition in Toulouse, France. Simon Thorpe is Directeur de Recherche at Centre de Recherche Cerveau & Cognition. Thorpe’s basic position can be summarized as follows: Can paranormal phenomena ...

Living with Dislecksia

Just about every day at work I have to dial a ridiculously long string of numbers in order to join a conference call. Just about every day on the internet I have to fill out those mind-bending captua forms. For me, it takes intense concentration to complete those tasks. Maybe you can imagine what college ...

Taboo Biology: Epigenetics

Throughout the twentieth century, one of the strongest taboos in biology was against the inheritance of acquired characteristics, sometimes called Lamarckian inheritance, after the pioneering evolutionary biologist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829). Lamarck proposed that adaptations by plants and animals could be passed on to their offspring. In this respect, Charles Darwin was a convinced Lamarckian. He ...

The Science Delusion on Red Ice Radio

British biologist Dr. Rupert Sheldrake, one of the world’s most innovative scientists, is the author of more than 80 scientific papers and ten books and is best known for his groundbreaking theory of morphic resonance. In this program we discuss Rupert’s latest book “The Science Delusion.” He begins with an overview of the ten dogmas ...

Happy 100k JCF

The Joseph Campbell Foundation is offering a bundle of free downloads from The Collected Works of Joseph Campbell. Foreword to Myth, Religion, and Mother Right An essay in PDF format from the collection The Mythic Dimension, Joseph Campbell’s foreword to Johann Jacob Bachofen’s Myth, Religion, and Mother Right examines the work of the nineteenth-century anthropologist—an ...

The Direction of Conscious Causation

“If I look at a distant star, the light may have taken 10 years to reach my eyes. I think when I project out the image of that star I’m in a sense connecting with the star with my mind. Does that mean that I’m connecting with the star as it is now or as ...

My Favorite Music in 2012

Last.fm also says, Matthew is into rock, 80s, pop, new wave and female vocalists. Interesting… Check out my music taste: http://www.last.fm/user/nautis

Jean Baudrillard

Depth of the Emptiness, Jean Baudrillard

“The futility of everything that comes to us from the media is the inescapable consequence of the absolute inability of that particular stage to remain silent. Music, commercial breaks, news flashes, adverts, news broadcasts, movies, presenters—there is no alternative but to fill the screen; otherwise there would be an irremediable void…. That’s why the slightest ...