May 4, 2017

Esoterica



Physicists Just Came Up With a Mathematical Model For a Viable Time Machine

Physicists have come up with what they claim is a mathematical model of a theoretical "time machine" - a box that can move backwards and forwards through time and space.

The trick, they say, is to use the curvature of space-time in the Universe to bend time into a circle for hypothetical passengers sitting in the box, and that circle allows them to skip into the future and the past.

. . .

The model is based on the idea that instead of looking at the Universe in three spatial dimensions, with the fourth dimension (time) separated, we should be imagining those four dimensions simultaneously.

That allows us to consider the possibility of a space-time continuum, where different directions in space and time are all connected within the curved fabric of the Universe.



Female dragonflies fake sudden death to avoid male advances

Female dragonflies use an extreme tactic to get rid of unwanted suitors: they drop out the sky and then pretend to be dead.

Rassim Khelifa from the University of Zurich, Switzerland, witnessed the behaviour for the first time in the moorland hawker dragonfly (Aeshna juncea). While collecting their larvae in the Swiss Alps, he watched a female crash-dive to the ground while being pursued by a male.

The female then lay motionless on her back. Her suitor soon flew away, and the female took off once the coast was clear.

“I was surprised,” says Khelifa, who had never previously seen this in 10 years of studying dragonflies.

I Grew Up In A Fundamentalist Cult — ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Was My Reality

I was raised in a fundamentalist Christian community — the church we attended could fairly be called a cult, and my parents took things a step further than even our church did, homeschooling and raising nine kids. I was the oldest. We were part of a larger movement now called “Quiverfull,” the term taken from a Psalm where the writer talks about God blessing the man whose “quiver is full of arrows.” The metaphor refers to children, and our community understood this to be a command: Have children and raise them in this aggressively conservative faith, and then there will be more “true” believer Christians in the world to bring about cultural revolution in the name of Jesus Christ. Children like me were raised to see life as apocalyptic, and ourselves as serving on the front lines of a culture war to make America Christian.

Women in this world were treated much like those in The Handmaid’s Tale — most, like my mom, didn’t have their own bank accounts, didn’t have their own email addresses, and couldn’t leave the home without permission from their husbands. They were called helpmeets, a word taken from the King James Version of the Bible, which refers to wives as created to meet the needs of their husbands and be helpers to them.

. . .

The publication of The Handmaid’s Tale during the time of the Reagan presidency and the Moral Majority was an apt collision of vision and fears expressed through fiction — the release of the new mini-series timed at the end of the first 100 days of Donald Trump, U.S. President #45, is a powerful piece of foresight on the behalf of the studio which created it. Americans are more politically engaged than they have been in years, and we would all do well to pay attention to this “antiprediction” of a TV show in hopes that we can learn from it and resist the fruit of 1980s Christian conservative thinking running our government today, and save the future of our democracy.

Therapists Are Using Dungeons & Dragons To Get Kids To Open Up

Adam Davis, co-founder of the Dungeons & Dragons therapy group Wheelhouse Workshop, thinks kids with social issues aren’t being asked the right questions. In a dreary school counselor’s office, it can be hard to engage with “Why aren’t you doing your homework?” and “Have you tried joining clubs?” For Davis, more fruitful lines of inquiry start with “Who has the axe? Is it two-handed? What specialty of wizard to you want to be?”

Davis, who runs Wheelhouse Workshop out of an office in a large, brick arts building in Seattle, is used to seeing sides of kids that don’t usually come out in school. He, along with co-founder Adam Johns, designs D&D games that are less like hack-and-slash dungeon-crawls and more like therapy with dragons. In D&D’s Forgotten Realms world, the kids’ psyches run amok. Earlier this month, over the phone, Davis told me about Frank (not his real name), a tall, lanky teenager who barely spoke above a whisper. In school, he tended to sit with his feet in front of his face, so no one could really see him. He hated to take up space. After his parents and teachers noticed that his body language seemed a little stand-offish to peers, they enrolled him in Wheelhouse Workshop.

“The character he chose was a dwarf barbarian,” Davis recalled. “He was really loud and bumbling and unapologetic. It was a really obvious opportunity for this kid to play with qualities other than his.” Adam had Frank sit like his character, spreading his legs apart and slamming his elbows onto the table. In dwarf-barbarian mode, Frank could experiment with new modes of relating to others.

IRS raids televangelist Benny Hinn's Texas office

Federal investigators raided the Grapevine headquarters of televangelist Benny Hinn Wednesday afternoon.

A federal source told WFAA that it has been a lengthy IRS investigation, although agents at the scene were vague about the scope and target of their search warrant.

"Today, we are here on official business, we are conducting a search warrant on the premises, basically that’s all I can tell you today," said Special Agent Michael Moseley with IRS Criminal Investigations.

. . .

A special agent says the IRS Criminal Investigations Department typically looks into tax evasion and general fraud against the government.

Scientists Have Observed Epigenetic Memories Being Passed Down For 14 Generations

The most important set of genetic instructions we all get comes from our DNA, passed down through generations. But the environment we live in can make genetic changes, too.

Researchers have now discovered that these kinds of environmental genetic changes can be passed down for a whopping 14 generations in an animal – the largest span ever observed in a creature, in this case being a dynasty of C. elegans nematodes (roundworms).

To study how long the environment can leave a mark on genetic expression, a team led by scientists from the European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO) in Spain took genetically engineered nematode worms that carry a transgene for a fluorescent protein. When activated, this gene made the worms glow under ultraviolet light.

How the trauma of life is passed down in SPERM, affecting the mental health of future generations

The children of people who have experienced extremely traumatic events are more likely to develop mental health problems.

And new research shows this is because experiencing trauma leads to changes in the sperm.

These changes can cause a man’s children to develop bipolar disorder and are so strong they can even influence the man’s grandchildren.

. . .

Researchers at the University of Zurich and ETH Zurich now think they have come one step closer to understanding how the effects of traumas can be passed down the generations.

A Giant Neuron Has Been Found Wrapped Around The Entire Circumference of The Brain

For the first time, scientists have detected a giant neuron wrapped around the entire circumference of a mouse's brain, and it's so densely connected across both hemispheres, it could finally explain the origins of consciousness.

Using a new imaging technique, the team detected the giant neuron emanating from one of the best-connected regions in the brain, and say it could be coordinating signals from different areas to create conscious thought.

This recently discovered neuron is one of three that have been detected for the first time in a mammal's brain, and the new imaging technique could help us figure out if similar structures have gone undetected in our own brains for centuries.

First Americans may have been Neanderthals 130,000 years ago

An extraordinary chapter has just been added to the story of the First Americans. Finds at a site in California suggest that the New World might have first been reached at least 130,000 years ago – more than 100,000 years earlier than conventionally thought.

If the evidence stacks up, the earliest people to reach the Americas may have been Neanderthals or Denisovans rather than modern humans. Researchers may have to come to terms with the fact that they have barely scratched the surface of the North American archaeological record.

“We often hear statements in the media that a new study changes everything we knew,” says Chris Stringer at the Natural History Museum in London. “If this result stands up to scrutiny, it does indeed change everything we thought we knew about the earliest human occupation of the Americas.”

The evidence comes from a coastal site in San Diego County, California. In the early 1990s, routine highway excavations exposed fossil bones belonging to a mastodon, an extinct relative of the elephant. Researchers moved in to examine the site, and they soon decided that this was no ordinary mastodon fossil.

5 comments:

  1. arghh.. what am i missing?

    there's something happening here but what it is ain't exactly clear.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What's unclear, darlin'?

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    2. i get a sense that there is some kind of connection between these different stories. of course there is the movement to find order or a pattern where there is none - only random chaos. yet still i sense there is something here, because although the stories are different and there are different numbers of stories in each post, there are recurring similarities and repeating themes. it's a puzzle not immediately available to straightforward logic...

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    3. It's just a news round-up, articles I find interesting and bookmark. So that pattern you're seeing is just the natural chaos of my mind.

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    4. really? i can usually see/make a connection between two or three straight away but so far i've never been able to link them all.

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