Sunday, January 30, 2011

term-in-all insufficiencies

though i have many occasions (and hopefully many future ones) to admire the work and pugnacious pluck of prominent atheist christopher hitchens, it bears declaring that i am not a member of the club. notwithstanding the regrettable bloat atheism's topical popularity has lent to evident quacks like james randi, and 'brights' like daniel dennett and richard dawkins, i'll leave for the moment the often knuckle-dragging complexion of its thinly eloquent membership, hitchens excluded, as a choice bit of irony.

of more pressing concern to me is fostering new and critical appraisals of the whole thesis/antithesis lock-down at work in these rather arid contemporary debates, not to mention the persistent desire of an apparent many to cling to either cartesian machine fantasies or godly puppetry schemes when modeling the human and cosmos.

in fact, the more papa-brain reason and papa-god faith duke it out, the more they begin to resemble their beloved antagonist. thusly i'd suggest that rather than deeper entrenchment of the two old school scenarios we're instead on the cusp of a full explication of the case for abandoning either/or, dualistic tautologies and their reactionary, dialectical politics. true, these formulae have bred old tools of usefulness but now, more often than not they drop a steaming load of impasse, suffering, and frustration continuity. bottom line, if we're to break free from such restrictive concepts and limiting methodologies of the epoch dying in our rearview, new solvents must be applied to old alums.
dull endgame: the autoerotic blank gun of hyperlogic

though in its most recent form, populist atheism emerged from the murderous, papist maw just a few hundred years ago, looking long overdue to forge new freedoms from the religio-centric world and its regressive fist of excesses, its roots are firmly found in antiquity with the birth of reason and the atomistic, materialist philosophies. thusly it fulfilled an important, sequential imperative, for without the developed rigor of logic it would be too easy to be led into complete schizophrenia through inflation and mainline identification with the numinous.

once ejected from the monad of primitive mind and gifted with a serpentine casting in dualities, this very experience of newly dispossessed forces was the alembic of bicameral times, the cauldron in which modern consciousness itself was fired and formed. our first-blush encounter with separative awareness of 'other' and divinity of scale in the world around us certainly needed an interfacing bridle of some kind if human development was to be served. as fate would have it, civilization veered towards the exploitation of religious sentiment and spiritual awe, suborning the weak for the gain of the crafty and powerphilic. no one would deny, with a view to history, that the sine qua non asset of the theocratic malform was and is its part slavish part domineering foot soldiers, self-considered chosen ones masquerading in lambskins of piety, righteousness, and order. instead of charity and love they spread a scrofulous resistance to enlightenment and peace, obstructing in the cinch of archaic fetishes a fuller, more nuanced knowing of human, plant, animal and other possibilities.

conversely, the atheistic codex, like a life-saving tourniquet gone awry, declared the gods dead, matter mute, cosmos an empty machine, and meaningfulness itself, that sense of the sacred in surround, a mere projective fancy of a dominator primate. on a good day, these commandments are used to stifle and disempower blanket injunctions made by the church which further poverty, blind obedience, and ignorance. on a slow day at the office watercooler, they get trotted out to kneecap what the mind can't reduce into digestible sums. but on bad days they become the cornerstone for gleeful consumption schemes, pro-science dictatorships, unreserved endorsement of the rape and witch-hunting of mother earth, and the very investiture of credibility and potency to industry and state that the church was once guilty of.

atheism, as it happens, sports its own untenable propositions. instead of the false equivalencies and disney-esque pap of the church we have churlish clerics of reason who wish to force every inconvenient truth or spiritual quality to the grid of desiccating reductios and unprovable negative spaces, sandwich-boarding for the existence of nothing, the vacuity of all phenomenon and the operant conditioners of mere chance manifestation and fitness determinancy. its the same ultimate hubris as that which claims to know the mind and will of a god.

you cannot champion the rights of women while desecrating the protomother who spawned such multiform creatures and constituents as gives us pleasure and pause. you cannot exalt the appetites and consume with abandon because of false and wishful beliefs that human ingenuity can better match the infinite controls and subtle wisdoms of living ecosystems and macro-organisms. you cannot wield the tool of logic without the nourishing influence of such irrational functions as intuition and sentiment lest you wish to be led into the insanity of unchecked, recursive, orwellian madness. nor can you fancy a solipsistic supremacy for the human that ends with our skin and our perceptions, picturing our kingly selves navigating through abstracted verses, the stage bereft of any intelligence and purpose save those we deign to imagine, sanction and ordain in our single-focused arrogance.

just because we've become the most skilled manipulators of our environ, and to some extent ourselves, doesn't mean the achievement subsumes the knowing of an animal, the discriminating management of plants, the self-regulation of the oceans, the maze-solving cunning of slime, the enchantment of the pollinators, the levitational force of trees, the humming malls of insect colonies, the inutility of decoration and display, the mystery that leads to a kiss or the cockamamie deferment of self-interest that characterizes true love. in short, for the theist to delimit the wilds and the majesty of this earth to the gore of a god that can be known by limited human conjecture is just as foolish as the atheist to say for certain that its all 'nothing but...' and the outgassing of a selfish gene.

we're not pockets of mere survivalist intelligence afloat in a world of things, permanently ensconced in a linguistic and phenomenalistic spacesuit. we're lightbodies, enfolded space more than grit of atom, a shapeshifting, permeable border made of the dust and detruis of stars, stories and histories in resonant interface, in protoplasmic continuum with this soft deck of a living theater in which every movement is meaningfully and completely sown, germinated, shot up in sundialed, enthusiastic firmness, only to brave the denoument of a gorgeous macabre, wilting in decomposition back to the original, never-to-be-repeated couplet.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

nomads-land: the tertiary view in a dyadic debate

it will be interesting to see if journalist christopher hitchens returns the volley of historian niall ferguson following the latter's lecture of a few days ago at the london school of economics. ferguson, in his excellent as usual form, presented a preliminary case for a reassessment of the kissinger oeuvre of realpolitik, braving what he termed a considerable headwind against conscientious portraiture of this controversial statesman.

on the downswing of over five years of extensive research and with the unique distinction of possessing full cooperation from his subject, ferguson was careful to accord his conclusions a rightful tentativeness given he intends to spend another three to four years penning his final, highly anticipated biography.

on the heel of commentary a few weeks past in which a loosely contextualized extraction RN/HAK macho talk was offered as further damning evidence of kissinger's protosociopathic character (as if it were unique in american history), ferguson was quick to upbraid critics, and hitchens in particular, for penning sensationalistic and highly elective explorations of often skewed and disenfranchised statistics alongside limited evidentiary references.

this included some unfortunate swipes at hitchens' credibility, based in part on spare (according to academe standards) primary-source footnoting in 'the trial of henry kissinger,' and a snide comment about the esteem one could accord such a scholarly publication venue as vanity fair, both of which made me wince slightly, but ferguson is known as much as hitchens for a holds-no-prisoners fierceness, even finding occasion to take a shot at pet adversary paul krugman for winning a mere token nobel prize.

his arguments were persuasive at face value, but somehow managed to leave an unsettling impression of apologist, elitist spin. for example, comparing US interventionist campaigns in guatemala in the 50s to chile in the 70s, ferguson points to significant differences in terms of loss of life by a factor of 100, making the guatemalan conflict productive of some 200,000 deaths compared to perhaps 2,000-2,500 in chile. yet, nowhere, he was quick to point out, do we see the kind of virulent criticism leveled at the memory of then secretary of state john foster dulles. this felt in and of itself like a kind of isolated extraction of statistics. however, the larger point, that kissinger's tactics in both covert and overt foreign policy interventions were not especially exceptional in the wider view of american political history, is extremely important.

further points, like the credible insistence on placing critiques within the rigor and context of the times, avoiding the lens of what becomes apparent later in history but would've perforce been unavailable to analysis of the period, were compelling and cleanly cut. examination of the real state of the US economy; the binding corsets forced onto american motives going into the vietnam conflict; the now forgotten extremes of violence in the streets and the multiple assassinations that informed much of the pop culture hangover of the post-68 period and the revisions of consensus history it furthered; the alarming indicators that founded cold war attempts to avoid hot war; the chilling complexion of soviet union capabilities; the diplomatic endgame openings and benefits accrued by the playoff between china and russia, these were all particularly strong counterpoints for thorough contexting.

one point i found troubling was the suggestion that mere academics and journalists can't be trusted, for the most part, to appreciate much less judge the onerous burden of responsibility those in political power need must bear in making choices, not between right and wrong, but degrees of unavoidable nuance. and while reference was made to perhaps subradar antisemitism playing its part in uncharitable characterizations of kissinger as either an upwardly mobile or sycophantic 'policy jew,' no accommodation was made for the fact that those in power must persistently seek it, cultivating the most cunning means to acquire and keep hold of it. it's not a burden inherited by or forced upon political agents and therefore an inquiry as to motive, preferred operational methods and underlying vision of leadership is fair game.

my technical knowledge of political history is too scant for me to say whether or not the lecture itself or its cursory hints at future evidence to be presented will be sufficient to counter the far more emotionally satisfying case presented by hitchens and myriad other human rights activists. there certainly seems sufficient grounds to argue pros and cons, which makes it a topic worth tracking. in truth, my interest in the subject has less to do with nursing any prosecutorial zeal against kissinger per se and more with how his case study exposes the liabilities in foreign policy methodologies, the intractable nurturing of theocratically- and industry-correct violence mongering, and the basic insufficiencies of all international political formats and rigid structures of economies.

i suppose i feel less a sense of outrage over this particular period in american history simply because, in the case of the hate-on for HAK, it seems more like opportunistic scapegoating of a plausible target already suited by circumstance, timing, and hubris to collective roleplay needs. i would be more interested to examine how this kind of selective prosecution in the press serves exculpatory trends with respect to the political process itself and ruminate on possible paradigms for the future.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

the tactics of quack fundamentalists

the rules of engagement used by reductionists and quackbusters, these cute, vestigial cul-de-sacs stuck in darwin's waiting room, are uniquely suited to third-rate, water-cooler messianics who secretly recognize an absence of factuals available for their rhetorical support. they can only decompose sufficient to stoop to classic disinformation tactics: escalate from intelligent debate to witch-hunt, evoke black and white propagandist sloganeering, present outright lies as though truth, reassure the audience that dumbed-down inquiry makes for better patriotism and more satisfying goodtimes, lather, rinse and repeat.

supporters and advocates for the holistic sciences are accused of luring the gullible away from appropriate treatment, which is, for the sake of rabid demagoguery, something the reductionists equate to murder. well, as point of order, advocates simply want the full, objective facts of both modalities of treatment to be laid out before the public so that informed choices can be made. in this interest, there is less than microscopic reportage in the mainstream press as to actual iatrogenic death rates or those in direct consequence to ideologically misguided suppressive treatments whose net effects are more debilitating and morbid than the original complaint. in often literal ways, little has changed since the days not long ago when jalap and mercury and phlebotomies were the rule of the day.

one of the consequences of civilization's tendency to homogeneity is a lapsing into established habits of communal practice that are hard to break, deeply ingrained as they are in the collective psyche, as in a persistence of the aura of divine absolution and freedom from suffering that pervades the conventional medical encounter that once pervaded the medieval religious one. endorsed by state and industry, the principal ideological underpinning used to excellent controls is the judeo-christian hangover, this archaic confession-absolution mechanism which inspires humanity to live its life according to morning-after pill tautologies. instead of evolving past the juvenile notion that we can behave with impunity, have our collective kicks and suffer them too, we hold to mind a puerile insistence that we be afforded nihilistic diversions to assuage the fact of our mortality alongside absolution in pretty pills and heroic procedures.

the expectation of being relieved of consequence as proletariat birthright (and protection from consequential prosecution as bourgeoisie idiom) is the proto-commandment of all mega-industries, the fatuous enterprises that have grown into pernicious versions of their original selves, raping and pillaging our precious habitat and belligerently defending constitutional loopholes favouring plunder; enslaving, sickening, and mass-murdering the delicate and noble units of consciousness who call our earth home; and finding no other metaphor for living aside from consumption and base-satisfaction, stripping our dear planet of her resources for mere electional frivolities, myopic fuel schemes and voracious consumer distraction-actions.

hardly anywhere do we see support for responsible stewardship and harmonious symbiosis as a ground for technology, progress and yes, our right to convenience. thusly does government and industry work to keep in place the ostrich effect that keeps declining-intelligence populations in the zombified groove of unchecked consumerism, gratuitous assaults on human health and environmental integrity without concern for consequence. in the place of righteous self-confrontation and judicious examination of attitudes and actions, we have the hollywoodized-for-pap promise that all our destructive and willfully unconscious behaviour can be absolved and neutralized in space-age, operatic campaigns of debt-forgiveness and a bright future of body-replacement technologies.

on classical and compound homeopathy

i must confess, while the search for a quasi-scientific vindication of homeopathic potentization and the therapeutic value of similia similibus curentur is an alluring and entertaining one, it really barely concerns me. in fact, i rather find the whole venture a sidebar interest best left to a genuine, and more likely future generation of progressive scientists, in other words, a mere sensationalized curiosity to be observed with ironic, wait-and-see patience by the homeopathic community. as wolfgang pauli aptly put it when his speculative but confident assertions for the existence of the neutrino particle were finally vindicated experimentally 26 years later, "everything comes to him who knows how to wait."

one only need look to the current low point of integrity at work in the so-called scientific method and its funding-chasing research cults to find an approach to pure investigation that's about as cowed and ecclesiastic as papist rhetoric, evidenced in no small measure by the easy manner in which vested interests manipulate conventions of double-blind, repeatable assays to suit predetermined outcomes, eliminating and discrediting as 'bad science' any inconvenient results which might unravel the sacred cows of current, and therefore perforce limited models of both organic and quantum realities.

one need only look at 'scientific' studies that validate the soft drink industry (soda pop is just as hydrating as water), the coffee and donut racket (caffeine plus sugar boosts brain functions), vaccination apologia (a chemically compromised immune system is best protection against illness), fast food industries (pizza is complete nutrition that features all food groups in one healthy package), pharmaceutical powers (who use a fingernail's worth of palliation to contextualize an ocean of adverse, often morbific side-effects) to see a high point of con-artistry dressed up in the language and protocols of objective, hellenistically-pure inquiry.

i much prefer empirical proofs and experiential report. in this respect, we have sustained and on-going archives of factual proof for the active effect on the human person of potentized ultramolecular medicines in the extensive collection of homeopathic provings. in a proving, the curative profile of individual remedies are thoroughly investigated by clinically, and safely, 'overdosing' a control group according to strict homeopathic protocols in order to delineate the symptoms provoked and therefore neutralized by treatment with homeopathic similars.

quackbusters who attempt to debunk provings by mass 'overdosing' on remedies are treating apples like rhubarb. in short, they intentionally mislead the public by treating these attenuated remedies as though they possess pharmacological powers, the very antithesis of homeopathic potentization. therefore in their mass ingestions certainly they'll suffer no harmful effects, one of the lovely features of this form of non-material medicine. but note, neither have they 'proved' that homeopathic remedies don't work. they've simply proved the remedies to be exactly what they purport to be... homeopathic.

to reiterate, the only way to duplicate the responsive effect of any given remedy isn't to chew down on whole vials of remedies, proving to the hard of understanding what is already known to be true of these 'insubstantial' vectors. repetition of the microdose is the known, the only, and the well-established methodology that produces repeatable, reliable results. this necessary adherence to homeopathic posology is conveniently never followed by quackbusters, since true investigation or the risk of an inconvenient result is not among their aims.
how to distinguish valid, classical homeopathy from quack, opportunistic, compound homeopathy

the most important principle in homeopathic treatment is the clinical employment of a single remedy constitutionally prescribed. 'constitutionally' means shifting view, looking at cases not in terms of differential disease manifestations, but as whole, unique individuals in the throes of an entire-person-event which tends towards clearly discernible, adynamic fixities (as opposed to the dynamic homeostasis which characterizes robust, reactive health). these fixities emerge as a set of narrated complaints, typical behaviours and synchronous life factors (i.e. expressions of the unconscious psyche in the actors and circumstances compelled as if by outside and topically-correct forces, into our midst).

the fine art of case-taking requires and presupposes an holistic apprehension of the signature essence detailed by the presenting symptom picture, not an assessment of symptoms to serve disease diagnosis alongside a dismissal of those which fail to fit categories. meaning, in order for the most similar and therefore most efficacious remedy to be discovered, the homeopath must be able to distill from a complete investigation of the person in terms of symptoms, life story, present and past stressors, medical and family histories, a cogent and nuanced picture of what the patient themselves cannot speak to... the source of an essential-for-growth-but-now-fixed conflict, a dramaturgy specific to the person that becomes nested in all hierarchies, from the molecular to the level of thought-forms and actional behaviours, producing metaphoric thematics clearly observable and leading quite specifically to an analogous remedy that bears out the indicated qualitative spirit and localities of symptoms.

this is the essence of the holistic sciences, understanding our experience of health and illness as total body events, not an assemblage of indiscrete, unrelated factors in a jumble form of meaningless correspondence. thusly, treatment plans that purport to make best use of homeopathic method and posology must limit themselves to core analysis until a confident determination of the similimum can be achieved, followed by potency considerations, administration of the dose and any required repetitions, including follow-up observations as to response and assessment of treatment results.
the unfortunate consequence of the exploding anecdotal reportage of the last two decades as to the often spectacular restorations of health and well-being classical homeopathy can lay claim to, is visible in the quick emergence of profiteers who scan markets for potential trend exploitation and care not for the furtherance of these important clinical procedures.

conventional physicians spend on average 8 minutes with their patients, while classical homeopaths must spend anywhere from an hour to two with new patients in order to take a full case and give the patient a complete hearing. further, treatment by single remedies is only successful to the extent the practitioner has done the personal work of becoming a clear observer of others. the truth for the vast majority of practitioners is a disappointing tendency to gloss over these steps, to project their unconsciousness and personal biases on their patients and thusly to produce very low success rates, since in the absence of the well chosen similimum, cases fail to progress.

in this vacuum, compound remedies and a return to disease categorization as a returning short-cut to causal medicine (which is not homeopathic) have both emerged to fill the need, on the one hand, of the lazy prescriber who wants recourse to broad-spectrum hammers for inscrutable cases, and on the other, manufacturers who want to market trendy modalities to an unknowning public, careless as to the damage such misapplied and misnomered treatments have on the credulity with which homeopathy is received.
to wrap up, its natural that approaches tending to deeper levels of whole-person integration and self-realization would attract opposition by forces which seek to keep the human fractured into an assemblage of discontinuous parts and specialized, unrelated functions. worst of all is the conformist and almost universal pressure to sport pop-culture psyches taken at face value instead of skeptically explored, challenged and ultimately subordinated to states of higher consciousness and wisdom. still, it would be unfortunate and somewhat naive to assume that the biggest threat to truth and progress is that posed by the most obvious adversaries.

in point of fact, the single most effective threat to the full flowering of homeopathy and all that it represents as a potential vehicle for new and exciting paradigm shifts in the sciences and humanities is its malformed practice by poorly trained, usually adjunctive professionals, and the marketing of compound remedies and single symptom, this-equals-that prescribing. until these misapplications are rooted out and guarded against, we can expect ongoing complicities by friendly fire.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

"Neurophysiological processes are needed to support the mind but do not explain it fully. If we knew all about the brain, we still would not understand the inner world of the individual. Mind states cannot be reduced to brain states."

[NeuroQuantology 2003; 1:36-57
Duch W. Synchronicity, Mind, and Matter]

Monday, January 17, 2011

I say that it touches a man that his blood is sea water and his tears are salt, that the seed of his loins is scarcely different from the same cells in a seaweed, and that of stuff like his bones coral is made. I say that the physical and biologic law lies down with him, and wakes when a child stirs in the womb, and that the sap in a tree, uprushing in the spring, and the smell of the loam, where the bacteria bestir themselves in darkness, and the path of the sun in the heaven, these are facts of first importance to his mental conclusions, and that a man who goes in no consciousness of them is a drifter and a dreamer, without home or any contact with reality.

[Donald Culross Peattie, "An Almanac for Moderns: A Daybook of Nature, 1935 (1963)]

on inducing apoptosis in cancer

the lecture i attended was quite complicated, therefore much to my liking, and extremely catalytic in terms of my commitment to continuing, self-directed, multidisciplinary studies.

here's the gist of Suzanne Cory's report: apoptosis is a constantly occurring, vital process in normal physiology, the mechanism of homeostasis. we're constantly producing new cells, for example, particularly in the liver, gut and immune system, and without this very complex process of apoptosis to regulate tissue formation and system ativities, we would, as professor Cory put it, explode.

when cell birth is equal to cell death, we have dynamic balance, which is what homeostasis means. but when cell death rates are higher than those of cell generation, we have the foundation for all the degenerative, wasting diseases; when cell birth prevails over cell death, a disposition to oncogenesis is created. it's this impairment of natural cell death that researchers term the "central step in tumour development."

apoptosis itself is an interesting mechanism. under its chain of influence, cells shrink, chromatin compacts, DNA is cleaved, cells 'bleb', and are engulfed by macrophages. the process has no lysis component and therefore produces no inflammatory response. apoptosis is a genetically programmed event that every human cell is capable of. it plays a key role, for example, in sculpting embryonic tissues, as when it deconstructs the webbing between our fingers and toes during later stage in-utero development.

apoptosis-inducing proteins have a hydrophilic tail that binds to mitochondrial membranes, creating leaks which spill contents into the cytoplasm and impair healthy regulation and cell translation, which in turn activates another family of proteins called caspases that trigger the cells to take an active hand in their own death.

current research (from late nineties onwards) is focusing on undoing the dominant pro-survival, oncogenetic proteins, creating various molecules to mimic the guardian, pro-death proteins that can bind to cell walls in their place, activating caspases which in turn trigger cell suicide. its not as simple as it sounds, since not every cancer has the same oncogenetic protein trigger, so at the moment they've only had success with a mimetic called ABT-737 which binds to only 3 of the pro-survival proteins, a class called BH3s. these appear most effective, for example, with follicular lymphomas [for example, the class of molecules called Bcl-XL has been fingered in lymphoid and epithelial cancers; A1 in stomach cancers; Mcl-l in multiple myelomas, etc].

sideeffects seem vastly more manageable than chemo or radiation: this kind of 'translational medicine', as she called it, which presumes to correct flaws in the copying of DNA information as cells replicate, can trigger unwanted platelet and lymphocyte death which she termed 'manageable...' [this is still an approach to medicine that tinkers with symptomatic consequence rather than eliminating root causes {ie. investigating why the DNA creates the copying errors in the first place as a holistic system wide event, not just a glitch at one level of cellular organization}, but as mechanical medicine gets more sophisticated one hopes patients have a better chance of surviving treatment and this is good news for fans of conventional treatment]

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

the arrogance of human theories of utility

Mark Schatzker has made a fey career for himself as an apologist for the meat industry and father-knows-best, rat-pack propaganda. This latest misrepresentation of the issues (from skewering data to suit the contentious notion that horsemeat is fit for consumption, to glossing over the more-than-average nightmarishness of equine slaughterhouses) is just another notch in his junk belt.

What piqued my ire most is the argument,

"The majority of horses aren’t raised for the table. Only a small number – somewhere between 1 and 10 per cent – are born and raised expressly for human consumption. The others only become meat if and when their usefulness to humans has expired.

Yet this simple fact of horses’ existence makes slaughtering them imperative. When they’re too old to go on trail rides or too slow to win races, they may still live for another 10 or 15 years. Keeping horses requires land and money. The odd wealthy hobby farmer may be willing to support a horse through its golden years. But most owners just don’t have the money."

First of all, I think its high time we recognize our role and real responsibilities toward the animal kingdom. We've taken on a surreal bloat with our dominator follies of mind if we fancy ourselves overlords of the natural world. In truth we're nothing more than custodians who have forgotten our humble place in the chain of wonders on this planet, becoming instead dark exploitators and facile-minded collaborators in a rank, Orwellian nightmare.

"A small group of people argue that human beings were originally hunter-gatherers who evolved eating the flesh of animals. This is a self-serving myth that is simply historically inaccurate. This mythical view implies that human evolution began with the ice age (20,000 years ago), when meat-eating became temporarily essential for survival. This relatively recent time period is not the point of historical origin for humans on the planet, but it was a dark passage, in which our survival needs eclipsed our compassion and empathy." [Dr. Gabriel Cousens]

Before we shackled and domesticated our brethren and violated the integrity of the earth for profit and amusement, natural forces harmonized the rise and fall of populations and habitat. Contemporary insanity of the human herd at its worst fancies itself ultimate adjudicator over life and death as a way to mitigate its impotence in the face of larger cosmic and terrestrial dynamics. This is no different than the circuitous behaviour of bullies who flatter agents of authority, establishing records of good behaviour and submission, only to ruthlessly abuse the vulnerable the second an unobserved opportunity presents, making victims pay the toll for the bully's resentment of moral controls in the first.

That we have betrayed our moral compass in mass patterns of genocide, forcing emigration from the wild to organized work and death camps, harnessing the noble flora and fauna to human will-to-power and its attendant, unchecked madnesses is a mixed and shameful history. Hardly anywhere do we see examples of man working symbiotically with resources, either plant, mineral, soil or animal, and on the few occasions that we have, it's been either under resented duress or an uncommon, rebel effort denigrated by consumer apologists who would rather have no controls on their greed, disaffection, or appetites.

"The human ancestor called “Lucy” (Australopithecus afarensis) is believed to have walked the earth 3.2 million years ago, and her mandibular structure (spatulate canines) clearly indicates that she subsisted primarily on plants. In fact “her” canines were less developed than modern human canines, making an even stronger case for human nutrition being plant source. In all of the vertebrate world, the teeth structure tells us which animals are carnivorous or not. The bigger the canines, the more likely that species was and is designed for a carnivorous diet. Humans have clear plant-source-only teeth. There are several other anatomical reasons humans are plant-source-only, but the teeth is the strongest indicator." [Dr. Gabriel Cousens]

That many who take up the hobby of equine subordination find themselves overextended by the responsibilities they've undertaken is no excuse for butchery. The schizoid extension of a callous utility argument, this arrogant assumption that everything should be judged and quartered according to shifting human notions of what can be called to heel and exploited for short-term gain and base delectation, is only a heartbeat away from counsel to early euthanasia for the sick and the elderly who have become a burden to their careproviders or families.

"In the discussion there are two strong points that overwhelmingly support plants as humanity’s natural food. The first evidence is anatomical and genetic. The old adage “dentition determines diet” means that the shape of an animal’s teeth tell us what they are designed to eat. Skeletal remains of ancient humans show us that our dental structure has changed very little over millions of years. Our dental structure was designed to eat fruit, nuts, seeds, and greens. In truth, one need not look any farther than our closest mammalian relatives for nutritional tips. Humans share 99.4% of their genetic makeup with frugivorous chimpanzees. Dogs, to which humans are commonly compared to, by those trying to justify an omnivorous diet, share merely 75% homologous genes with humans." [Dr. Gabriel Cousens]

Its an atrocity that human forces have taken so well and so thoroughly to this fetishistic need to subordinate, imprison and torture other forms of life, allotting to ourselves a free and unapologetic reign to nurse and give form to a strain of sadism and lust for destruction without consequence that if applied to other humans would be an outrage. We insist on hocus pocus distinctions and de-sensitization campaigns to quell any niggling misgivings we might have about the truth of our conduct, and lock ourselves into a vicious cycle of murder, the consumption of violent proceeds, and the perpetuation of the selfish and low-brow states of mind and heart such a diet disposes to.

"Plant-source nutrition, however, has still been the primary diet of humanity during the last 10,000 years of recorded history. And there are many examples of cultures that thrived on plant-source-only nutrition, including Herodotus’ Pelagasians, who existed 5,000 years ago and had an average age of 200 years on close to a 100% live food plant-source-only diet. (I actually visited Greece to verify their existence and where they lived.) Herodotus, the father of history, also pointed out that plant-source-only cultures were less war-like, and more spiritually and culturally evolved.

Such famous vegetarians include: Leonardo de Vinci, Pythagoras, Pluto, Plutarch, St. Francis of Assisi, Martin Luther, Isaac Newton, Voltaire, John Wesley, Benjamin Franklin, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Susan B. Anthony, Leo Tolstoy, Henry Ford, Mahatma Gandhi, and Albert Einstein. Plant-source-only cultures included the Essenes, the Hunzas, the Aztecs, the Mayans, the Zapotec, the Native American Choctaws, and the ancient Cherokees. It is significant that two major studies by Native Americans themselves showed that 60% of Native Americans were agriculturalists subsisting primarily on plants. The buffalo culture that emerged on the Great Plains was short-lived and was the direct result of European invasion and influence. The teachings of the White Buffalo Calf Women was to be plant-source-only, unless there were no other foods to eat; and then the buffalo would offer itself for survival food." [Dr. Gabriel Cousens]

Horses, like all animals, should be repatriated into the wilds where they belong, and those that are destined to participate in human custodianship should be treated as equals with full recourse to the same code of rights we afford ourselves. Any attempt at neutralizing world conflicts, all efforts to eliminate the maintaining causes of poverty and suffering, will ever come to nought until we rebuild from the ground up a consistently moral code of being, reassigning to the planet, its resources and cells of consciousness, the royal, sacred role reductionist boohoo rationality has robbed it of. The world is not for us to plunder, it is our teacher and essential co-factor. We forget this at our continued peril.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

required reading

Quite possibly the single most important and galvanizing book I've ever read. A must have for the investigative journalist, inquiring minds, advocates of empiricism and transparency, opponents of industry-slavishness and those who feel a calling to public service.

Cultural Dwarfs and Junk Journalism is Martin Walker’s fourth book charting the development of the corporate science lobby that has grown rapidly since New Labour came to power in 1997. One of the most recent exponents of the Lobby is Dr Ben Goldacre who has regurgitated a bad ‘Science’ column in the Guardian newspaper since 2003.

Like other quackbusters Goldacre claims to write factually based and scientifically accurate articles about health, medicine and science either supporting scientists and doctors or criticising individuals involved in alternative or nutritional health care. Goldacre’s writing, however, actually reflects the ideology of powerful industrial, technological and political vested interests.

Goldacre who it is claimed is a Junior doctor working in a London NHS hospital is actually a clinical researcher working at the centre of New Labour’s Orwellian spin operation that puts a sympathetic gloss on anything shown to create adverse reactions from MMR to Wi-Fi, while at the same time undermining cost-effective and long tried alternative therapies such as acupuncture and homoeopathy. Goldacre is involved with public health researchers well known for trying to prove that those who claim to be adversely affected by pollutants in our modern high-technology society, suffer from ‘false illness beliefs’.

Cultural Dwarfs and Junk Journalism, investigates Goldacre’s role in industry lobby groups and puts another point of view in defense of some of the people whom he has attacked, belittled, satirized, castigated, vilified, maligned and opined against in his junk journalism.

Cultural Dwarfs and Junk Journalism: Ben Goldacre, quackbusters and corporate science, is available from the Slingshot Publications web site as a free download.

Friday, January 7, 2011


LEADING CONCEPT: The aboriginal source-ground of all substance is form, shape, pattern, intentionality.

Aristotle first formalized the idea with the term, 'entelechy.' While philosophic usage defines entelechy as 'actuality distinguished from potentiality,' this fails to convey its fuller, developed meaning. Entelechy has come to suggest the vital force that governs and directs the formative process by which a thing becomes itself. An example would be the guiding, innate quality that drives the unpacking of a seed, thrusting its scouts through cold spring soil pursuing a sun it has never known but natively seeks, the scouting shoots in turn becoming stem, leaf, blossom, fruit and fallen seed again.

This principle has been reframed by modern scientists as diverse as biologist Rupert Sheldrake, with his morphic resonance theory of formative causation, to David Bohm's concept of implicate and explicate orders.

Acquiring a facility to accept evidence that prior to all substance or phenomena is an informing form, or shape and nothing but shape [Bohm] is a prerequisite for those who seek explanations for homeopathy's curative powers or a deeper understanding as to the nature of human, ecological and social pathologies, their evolution, function, and engagement.

double blind

"Mastery of the inner world, with a relative contempt for the outer, must inevitably lead to great catastrophes. Mastery of the outer world, to the exclusion of the inner, delivers us over to the demonic forces of the latter and keeps us barbaric despite all outward forms of culture."

[from the translator's preface: The Secret of the Golden Flower, A Chinese Book of Life translated and explained by Richard Wilhelm with a foreward and commentary by C.G. Jung]

Saturday, January 1, 2011

its important to look at the broadstrokes

we've self-selected a high fat, high sugar, high salt, highly inert and denatured dietary habit. this leaves us vulnerable to fungal and viral acutes and the breakdown disease groups, like atherosclerosis, arthritis, diabetes, renal and hepatic insufficiencies, cancer, hormonal and neuronal malfunctioning, psychiatric complaint and bone density loss, to name but a few.

the challenge of shedding this habit is immense. our global pursuit of market satiety for this "high fat, high sugar, high salt, highly inert and denatured dietary habit" is also the main engine of suffering and distress in the world. for example, agricultural practices don't tend to the land and nurse its needs in symbiotic profit, harvesting the peak quality and highest nutritional integrity possible for their products, they instead strip it of its essential qualities and precursors, and cheapen the qualitative excellence of the original version in terms of both nutritional profile and capital value to the producer. this high input low yield cycle likely accounts for why people don't get as excited about the idea of buying a farm as they might, let's say, of buying a winery, or jaguar.

the other factor to be taken into account is the gross aberration of mind and emotions this dietary regime produces. more than any other single causative force, our denatured, processed, animal-eating ways make possible the sociopathy at work in all forms of tribal violence and exploitation of the vulnerable. we wrongly argue over the ideological details, looking at the various phylogenetic and cultural inflections that inspire violence in people instead of looking at the measurable, physiological forces at work in the bodies that sport these fixed ideas. these measurable, physiological forces not only impinge on our body's healthy functioning, they put a shave on human perceptions as well, thusly making some ideas and patterns of individual and group behaviour more attractive than others. little do we know we can just eat our way to detente.

to say this another way, the chronic hepatic overdrive that is endemic to the times does not biochemically tend us, or the institutional bodies which represent us, to patience, the ability to empathize, or to generosity of view. if we seek new levels of person-to-person cooperation on this earth in a new era of geopolitical visioneering, we simply need to harmonize the human liver by ditching the stimulants, and by eating smaller and greener.

a good chunk of the agriculture we've parceled out of our neighbourhoods to big business in a distant field are going to have to be brought down to local servicing again, not just for pretense purposes, as in locavore snobbery, but because tending to our food more directly will put us in a better position to not just heal ourselves, but to restore equilibrium to the planet at the same time.