Medley

Call and Response

Ananya Sri Ram – USA

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The evenings at Krotona in Ojai, California often take on a magical effect. As the sun sets in west, the mountains reflect the fading glow, turning a beautiful pink hue. The light in the air grows dimmer, and a stillness begins to descend. It feels like the divine is pulling a warm sheet over everything, calming the physical world and readying it for sleep. One is transported into a bed of quiet. And then the owls begin their song.

Read more: Call and Response

Five precepts of Buddhism may be linked to lower depression risk

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Study suggests the moral practice may buffer known links between high stress levels and depression

A new study suggests that people with high levels of neuroticism and stress may be at greater risk for depressive symptoms, but those links could be buffered for people who observe the five precepts of Buddhism -- a fundamental system of ethics for the religion's followers. Nahathai Wongpakaran of Chiang Mai University, Thailand, and colleagues present these findings in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on November 30, 2022.

Read more: Five precepts of Buddhism may be linked to lower depression risk

Lucid dying: Patients recall death experiences during CPR

Detection of rhythmic brain waves suggestive of near-death experiences

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One in five people who survive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) after cardiac arrest may describe lucid experiences of death that occurred while they were seemingly unconscious and on the brink of death, a new study shows.

Read more: Lucid dying: Patients recall death experiences during CPR

New theory suggests that decisions are made unconsciously, then about half a second later become conscious

 

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Consciousness is your awareness of yourself and the world around you. This awareness is subjective and unique to you.

A Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine researcher has developed a new theory of consciousness, explaining why it developed, what it is good for, which disorders affect it, and why dieting (and resisting other urges) is so difficult.

Read more: New theory suggests that decisions are made unconsciously, then about half a second later become...

The Cosmos Within

Ananya Sri Ram – USA

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The James Webb Telescope: ”Looking back into the past”

“One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye.”

                                                                                                    ---Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The images from the Webb Telescope published by Nasa in July of this year cannot be put into words. Despite several journalists being moved to explain the insurmountable feeling of connection, the actual feeling cannot be verbalized. It is reminiscent of the character ET in Steven Spielberg’s fantasy looking at “home” while pointing to the sky. It isn’t just that we carry within us the substance made from the stars, it is almost as though the cells within our own bodies recognize something so familiar to the deeper part of our being. Perhaps it is our soul recognizing the Oversoul or Origin meeting Origin.

Read more: The Cosmos Within

The Myths of Materialism

Tim Wyatt – England

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The author at Stonehedge 

Wealth and piety will decrease day by day, until the world is wholly depraved. Then property alone will confer rank; wealth will be the only source of devotion; passion will be the sole bond of union between the sexes; falsehood will be the only means of success in litigation; and women will be objects merely of sensual gratification. Earth will be venerated only for its mineral resources.

                                                                                                                      From the Vishnu Purana.

This quote from the ancient Hindu scriptures refers to The Kali Yuga or Dark Age. This is the era in which we now find ourselves enmeshed, and in which materialism reigns supreme as the world crumbles into decadence and destruction. Although written centuries ago the sentiments above have a grim resonance in our modern world in which materialism predominates and allows no rivals.

Read more: The Myths of Materialism

Climate change has likely begun to suffocate the world’s fisheries

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By 2080, around 70% of the world's oceans could be suffocating from a lack of oxygen as a result of climate change, potentially impacting marine ecosystems worldwide, according to a new study. The new models find mid-ocean depths that support many fisheries worldwide are already losing oxygen at unnatural rates and passed a critical threshold of oxygen loss in 2021.

Read more: Climate change has likely begun to suffocate the world’s fisheries

Politically polarized brains share an intolerance of uncertainty

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Since the 1950s, political scientists have theorized that political polarization -- increased numbers of "political partisans" who view the world with an ideological bias -- is associated with an inability to tolerate uncertainty and a need to hold predictable beliefs about the world.

But little is known about the biological mechanisms through which such biased perceptions arise.

Read more: Politically polarized brains share an intolerance of uncertainty

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