Blessed Imbolc

Feb 16, 2022

Esoterica



Pastor Greg Locke threatens to dox ‘witches’ that infiltrated wife’s Bible book club

The Tennessee pastor known for burning so-called "witchcraft" books like Harry Potter and Twilight has threatened to expose six supposed "witches" in a new video that has gone viral.

Pastor Greg Locke, who styles himself as a prophet for predicting Donald Trump would beat "demon-possessed" Joe Biden, went on a wild sermon against the so-called "witches" that infiltrated his congregation.

In the video taken on 13 February, Mr Locke demanded the six "get out" or he would expose them during the next sermon to his Global Vision Bible Church this coming Sunday.

"Three of you are in this room right now. Three of you in the room right now. You better look in my eyeballs, we ain’t afraid of you, you stinkin’ witch, you devil-worshipping Satanist witch. We cast you out in the name of Jesus Christ! We break your spells, we break your curse. We got your first name, we got your last name, we even got an address for one of you!" he screamed.


Christian Protesters Demand Satanism Not Be Protected By First Amendment—Without A Shred Of Irony

[I]ndeed, to suggest that the Satanic Temple's right to free speech not be protected is to suggest that the government should have the authority to shut down any and all speech it does not endorse, which would in itself constitute a violation of the First Amendment.

Additionally, Christian conservatives nationwide have often accused the government of violating their First Amendment rights when not calling on the government to strip First Amendment rights from anyone they might happen to disagree with.

Late last year, for instance, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn called for the United States to have a single religion, a claim that goes directly against the First Amendment, which, among others, decrees that Congress "shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

Many have pointed out that these behaviors are especially hypocritical considering Christian conservatives' criticisms of "cancel culture" and The Satanic Temple's free speech advocacy.


The Einstein Effect: People Trust Nonsense More if They Think a Scientist Said It

Discontinuity is the antithesis of inspiration. The complexity of the present time seems to demand an unveiling of our hopes if we are going to survive. This life is nothing short of a blossoming osmosis of mythic understanding. Sounds like bullshit? That's because it is.

These statements were generated using the New Age Bullshit Generator, an algorithm that combines new-age buzzwords and seemingly intellectual wording to create phrases that sound profound.

An international team of researchers recently presented people with some 'pseudo-profound bullshit' created by the generator to see if they found the statements more credible if they came from a scientist or a spiritual guru.

. . .

The results suggest that people generally find statements more credible if they come from a scientist when compared to a spiritual guru, with 76 percent of participants rating the 'scientist's' balderdash at or above the midpoint of the credibility scale, compared with 55 percent for the 'guru'.


Current And Former “Dr. Phil” Employees Say The Set Is A Toxic Workplace. The Show Says Everything’s Fine.

“I would have nightmares. I would literally be working in my sleep and have nightmares about something being wrong or not turning in something the right way,” the former employee said. “Even when I quit, I had to go to therapy for it, which is crazy because you’re working for a therapist.”

. . .

Seven of the employees said they were encouraged to perpetuate racist stereotypes onscreen, while two others alleged they experienced racism behind the scenes. In text messages reviewed by BuzzFeed News, employees also expressed concerns about booking guests with a history of mental illness and not feeling adequately prepared to work with them.

One former employee said they were even instructed to make sure a guest on the show didn’t take her prescribed medication.

“We were specifically instructed, ‘Make sure that she doesn't take her medication before she goes onstage,’ because they wanted her to look unstable and quote-unquote, ‘crazy,’ for lack of a better term,” the employee said. “She did take the medication because no one got there in time and I remember thinking, ‘My God, I don't want to be the one to tell them or dissuade them from that.’ And that's all for the sake of TV. Obviously this girl should be on her medication and that's what we're trying to get her help for, but for the sake of TV they wanted her to look off the rails.”


Chalk drum from 5,000 years ago is ‘most important art find’ in a century

A 5,000-year-old chalk sculpture discovered in the Yorkshire countryside is “the most important piece of prehistoric art to be found in Britain in the last 100 years”, the British Museum has said.

The drum was found on a country estate near the village of Burton Agnes and has given insight into cultural interaction between prehistoric communities across Britain and Ireland.

The sculpture, which will be displayed to the public at the British Museum, is decorated with patterns that fit an artistic style from around the same time Stonehenge was built.

The Burton Agnes drum's significance lies in its similarity to three drums that were uncovered 15 miles away in Folkton, North Yorkshire, in 1889.


Biologists surprised to discover that some "random" mutations may not be so random

Neo-Darwinism refers to any branch of science which combines Charles Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection with Gregor Mendel's discipline of genetics. The overwhelming majority of biologists and geneticists are neo-Darwinists, and one primary tenet of neo-Darwinism is the idea that the genetic mutations which cause living creatures to evolve occur randomly. For humans, this means that mutations from the entirely beneficial (opposable thumbs) and the undesirable (say, those which cause obstructive sleep apnea) can be attributed to chance rather than some kind of purposeful direction. The ones that get passed on permanently do so through natural selection — that is, because they just so happen to help their hosts, who then survive longer and have more opportunities to perpetuate the mutation via reproduction.

At least, that was the prevailing assumption. A new study led by researchers from Israel and Ghana and published in the journal Genome Research reveals that, in fact, at least one helpful genetic mutation was not random at all. They specifically studied the HbS mutation, which protects people against malaria, and found that it arose more frequently within a population where malaria is endemic (Africa) than within a population where it is not (Europe). This might cause some of neo-Darwinism's tenets to be revised.

"The results showed that the malaria resistant HbS mutation arises more frequently in the population and gene where it is of adaptive significance," Dr. Adi Livnat from the University of Haifi, the study's lead researcher and corresponding author, told Salon by email. "This shows empirically for the first time a directional response of mutation to a specific long-term environmental pressure. This sort of result cannot be explained by neo-Darwinism, which is limited to explaining minor, gross-level effects on average mutation rates, not responses of specific mutations to specific environmental pressures. Therefore, the implications are that here there is an empirical finding that neo-Darwinism really cannot explain, which challenges the notion of random mutation on a fundamental level."


Neanderthal extinction not caused by brutal wipe out

The Neanderthals emerged in Europe as far back as 400,000 years ago. The current theory suggests that they went extinct about 40,000 years ago, not long after Homo sapiens arrived on the continent from Africa.

But the new discovery suggests that our species arrived much earlier and that the two species could have coexisted in Europe for more than 10,000 years before the Neanderthals went extinct.

According to Prof Chris Stringer, of the Natural History Museum in London, this challenges the current view, which is that our species quickly overwhelmed the Neanderthals.

"It wasn't an overnight takeover by modern humans," he told BBC News. "Sometimes Neanderthals had the advantage, sometimes modern humans had the advantage, so it was more finely balanced."


15 Out Of 23 Monkeys Implanted With Elon Musk’s Brain Chip Reportedly Dead As Neuralink Prepares For Human Trials

You know that computer chip Elon Musk hopes to implant into people’s brains? Turns out, it’s not working so well for the monkeys.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) came forward recently with allegations that the monkeys Musk’s company, Neuralink, used to test their product on between 2017 and 2020 were subject to what amounted to torture.

Specifically, they claim rashes, brain hemorrhaging, and self-injury followed the implant in the 23 test subjects over those years. Perhaps most notably, 15 of those monkeys are now dead, with some having to be euthanized due to complications.

The official complaint lodged by PCRM against the University of California Davis, which housed the Neuralink-owned monkeys during the experiments, paints a very different story from the one we’ve heard from Musk and Neuralink as they march towards human trials.


OpenAI Chief Scientist Says Advanced AI May Already Be Conscious

OpenAI’s top researcher has made a startling claim this week: that artificial intelligence may already be gaining consciousness.

Ilya Sutskever, chief scientist of the OpenAI research group, tweeted today that “it may be that today’s large neural networks are slightly conscious.”

. . .

It’s possible that Sutskever was speaking facetiously, but it’s also conceivable that as the top researcher at one of the foremost AI groups in the world, he’s already looking downrange.

He’s long been preoccupied with artificial general intelligence, or AGI, which would refer to AI that operates at a human or superhuman level. During his appearance in the iHuman AI documentary “iHuman,” for instance, he even declared that that AGIs will “solve all the problems that we have today” before warning that they will also present “the potential to create infinitely stable dictatorships.”


This is going well: Meta adds anti-grope buffer zone around metaverse VR avatars

"This builds upon our existing hand harassment measures that were already in place, where an avatar’s hands would disappear if they encroached upon someone’s personal space," Sharma explained.

Online harassment, trolling, and toxic behavior has been a problem on the internet since modems and bulletin boards. Those who have followed the tech industry for a while may recall a 1993 Village Voice article by author Julian Dibbell titled, "A Rape in Cyberspace," about text-based torment.

Well, that sort of behavior, something every mass market multiplayer game has had to confront, found its way into graphic environments where it has proven to be no more welcome and no easier to get rid of. It was a problem more than a decade ago in the precursor to the modern headset-based metaverse, Second Life, where virtual rape was sold for Linden dollars and sexual assaults on avatars are said to have accounted for about 20 per cent of reported infractions.

And it's a problem today. As the MIT Technology Review put it two months ago, "The metaverse has a groping problem already." The word "already" here might be better interpreted to mean "since forever."


Major breakthrough on nuclear fusion energy

The UK-based JET laboratory has smashed its own world record for the amount of energy it can extract by squeezing together two forms of hydrogen.

If nuclear fusion can be successfully recreated on Earth it holds out the potential of virtually unlimited supplies of low-carbon, low-radiation energy.

. . .

It's not a massive energy output - only enough to boil about 60 kettles' worth of water. But the significance is that it validates design choices that have been made for an even bigger fusion reactor now being constructed in France.

"The JET experiments put us a step closer to fusion power," said Dr Joe Milnes, the head of operations at the reactor lab. "We've demonstrated that we can create a mini star inside of our machine and hold it there for five seconds and get high performance, which really takes us into a new realm."


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