Science Research: Fasting for 72 Hours Can Reboot The Entire Immune System

New emerging science discovers that Fasting for 72 Hours Can Reboot The Entire Immune System

The ancient practice of abstaining from eating for a day, or sometimes even a week or more has a history of curing a whole host of health problems, fasting was a staple in cultures of the past but even a brief fast can completely re-boot your immune system.

Research implies that when the body is hungry in short spurts, it can kick-start stem cells into producing new white blood cells.

New Reaserch

Implies that white blood cells, also known as leukocytes, are the cells which the immune system uses to fight against foreign invaders like viruses and bad bacteria.

Scientists at the University of Southern California found that fasting could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from damaged immune systems, such as cancer patients on chemotherapy, or people with auto-immune disorders.

Intermittent fasting even triggers stem cells to regenerate!

Valter Longo has conducted a body of scientific research about fasting which is absolutely astounding, as well.

He published a fascinating paper in the Journal of Cell Biology based on work he did on yeast cells. The results were considered so unlikely he almost didn’t get his paper published. What Longo discovered was that when he starved a colony of yeast cells, about 95% of the cells would commit suicide, using the controlled death mechanism of apoptosis. They would disassemble their proteins, dissolve the cell membranes, and turn themselves into food for the remaining 5%.

Longo’s work suggests that if the fasting body is able to rejuvenate and multiply the bone marrow cells that are responsible for blood and immunity (hematopoietic stem cells), then it is obvious that the body could do this as well or better when it has plenty to eat.

Caveat: fasting can be harmful. If you have any serious health conditions, and you’re seriously thinking of trying this, you should consult your doctor first.

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Archaeologists find richest cache of ancient mind-altering drugs in South America

Researchers discovered the mind-altering kit in the Cueva del Chileno rock shelter, high in the Bolivian Andes.

When José Capriles arrived in 2008 at the Cueva del Chileno rock shelter, nestled on the western slopes of Bolivia’s Andes, he didn’t know what he would find within. Sweeping aside layers of fresh and ancient llama dung, he found the remains of an ancient burial site: stone markers suggesting a body had once been interred there and a small leather bag cinched with a string. Inside was a collection of ancient drug paraphernalia—bone spatulas to crush the seeds of plants with psychoactive compounds, wooden tablets inlaid with gemstones to serve as a crushing surface, a wooden snuffing tube with a carved humanoid figure, and a small pouch stitched together from the snouts of three foxes.

Now, more than a decade later, Capriles—an anthropologist at Pennsylvania State University in State College—and colleagues have discovered that the 1000-year-old bag contains the most varied combination of psychoactive compounds found at a South American site, including cocaine and the primary ingredients in a hallucinogenic tea called ayahuasca. The contents suggest the users were well versed in the psychoactive properties of the substances, and also that they sourced their goods from well-established trade routes.

“Whoever had this bag of amazing goodies … would have had to travel great distances to acquire those plants,” says Melanie Miller, lead author of a new study on the discovery and a bioarchaeologist at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. “[Either that], or they had really extensive exchange networks.”

Where Ancient peoples on Hallucinogens

Nearly every culture on Earth has dabbled with consciousness- and perception-altering substances. Indigenous groups from Central and South America have used hallucinogens such as peyote and psilocybin mushrooms during rituals and religious ceremonies for thousands of years. Archaeologists have uncovered hundreds of items that provide a glimpse into these ancient practices, but few are as complete as the Bolivian find.

In 2010, Miller joined the team to help chemically analyze the items, which had been nearly perfectly preserved in the arid conditions of the 4000-meter-high mountains. Radiocarbon dating revealed that the outer bag was made around 1000 C.E. Next, Miller carefully unwound the fox snout pouch and emptied its dust and debris onto a piece of aluminum foil. Using a technique frequently used in modern illicit drug testing called liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry, she and her fellow researchers hunted for chemical signatures in the sample. They identified at least five psychoactive substances: cocaine, benzoylecgonine, bufotenine, harmine, and dimethyltryptamine.

Harmine and dimethyltryptamine are the main ingredients in ayahuasca, used ceremonially for centuries by indigenous South Americans. Miller says their presence alongside the snuffing tube and tablet may mean that people inhaled these chemicals long before they were brewed into a beverage.

The mixture’s origins also offer clues to the trade routes of the people who occupied the high plains. Several of the compounds come from the plant genus Anadenanthera—also known as vilca, cebil, or yopo—which grows widely through South America, but not in this region of the Andes. Similarly, the likely source of the harmine is a lowland Amazonian species.

Miller says it’s possible that the mixture of compounds was unique to the region. The fact that at least two of the ingredients are known to be used in tandem in ayahuasca raises the possibility that this shaman was selecting plant combinations for specific mind-altering effects, they report today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “Maybe they were mixing multiple things together because they realized when they’re combined, they have a whole different set of experiences,” Miller says.

A snuffing tube was used to inhale ground-up plant matter with psychoactive compounds.

When indigenous South Americans began to brew ayahuasca is still a major mystery, says Christine VanPool, an anthropologist at the University of Missouri in Columbia who wasn’t involved in the work. She’s intrigued by the idea they may first have discovered its properties by inhaling its key compounds. Shamans “say they’ve had [ayahuasca] for a very long time. So in some ways, I wasn’t surprised,” she says. But because archaeological evidence has been lacking, the new find is “exciting.”

We Can Now Speak the Universal Language of Honey Bees

Researchers have deciphered and codified the honey bee language.

One of the biggest research goals of scientists studying animal communication is to one day be fully capable of communicating with other creatures, as fluently as we can communicate with other humans. Imagine being able to translate whale song, or elephant hums, or wolf howls.

While we've attempted to teach human language to other animals, like apes who have been taught sign language, it's not quite the same thing as making a decipherable translation of another animal's language.

But now, a breakthrough. A team of researchers at Virginia Tech have managed to decode the language of honey bees in such a way that will allow other scientists across the globe to interpret the insects' highly sophisticated and complex communications, reports Phys.org.

It's a veritable Rosetta Stone for honey bee linguistics, and it's a universal translator, applicable across honey bee subspecies the world over.

How they did it

To understand how researchers did it, first you must understand the medium through which honey bees communicate: the waggle dance. When bees need to convey, say, the location of a food source, they engage in a performance of sorts, a dance, whereby the precise speed and form of their waggles tells other bees where to go. This language is surprisingly complex and can impart complicated instructions.

While we've known some of the basics of how waggle dances work for decades now, our knowledge has its limitations. For instance, different bees conveying the same location can vary in their waggles, and some individual bees may alter their dances. In other words, there's a lot we don't understand about the subtleties; there's a lot of information that's lost in translation.

To fully decode honey bee language, it took full immersion. The research team did a deep dive into the waggle, carefully analyzing bee dances and precisely plotting the travel paths of bees on a map. They painstakingly calibrated dance movements with flight paths, while also considering something never considered before: noise levels. This essentially allowed them to make distinctions between bees that communicate the same information a little bit differently.

"What also makes our research different is that we trained many numbers of bees and followed them great distances," explained Roger Schürch, one of the team's lead researchers. "You can train bees to go to a feeder and move it farther and farther away."

They then compared and then collated their data with all previously published bee calibration studies. What they found was that their methodology could be applied across subspecies with remarkable accuracy. By factoring in noise, the researchers were able to weed through variations between species and essentially formulate a universal codex.


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Bees around the world can understand one another

"While there were differences among populations in how they communicate, it doesn't matter from the bees' perspective," said Schürch. "We cannot tell them apart in terms of how they translate this information. There is huge overlap. In effect, a bee from England would understand a bee from Virginia and would find a food source in the same way with a similar success rate."

The usefulness of being able to communicate with bees in their own language cannot be overstated, especially because honey bees are such an important pollinator. The USDA estimates that one out of every three bites of food in the United States depends on honey bees and other pollinators.

"We think that this research can enable bees to be used as bio-indicators," said Margaret Couvillon, the team's other lead researcher. "The bees can tell us in high spatial and temporal resolution where forage is available and at what times of the year. So, if you want to build a mall for example, we would know if prime pollinator habitat would be destroyed. And, where bees forage, other species forage as well. Conservation efforts can follow."

So now, the bees can talk to us, and we can understand them with unprecedented precision. Sure, most people aren't likely to find bees to be the most engaging conversationalists in the world; bees are, quite understandably, preoccupied with talking about banal bee stuff. That's a hot topic, though, for agriculturalists, or developers or beekeepers.

The gap between our species just got a little bit smaller, and that's a comforting thought in a world where bees play such a crucial role in the human ecosystem.

Man Faces 20 Years In Prison For Leaving Food And Water in Desert For Migrants

Scott Warren, a college professor and charity worker is facing up to 20 years in prison for leaving food and water for immigrants near the border.

What happens to you in the US when you try to save the lives of your fellow man/human. It can get you 20 years imprisonment. So much for land of the free... Big Joke.

Scott Warren, a college professor and charity worker is facing up to 20 years in prison for leaving food and water for immigrants near the border, and also providing a safe house for them to stay the night.

Scott, was arrested by border patrol and charged with two counts of harboring illegal aliens and one count of conspiracy to transport and harbor illegal aliens. The conspiracy charge is a federal felony that carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

Warren’s arrest happened just hours after border patrol was criticized by the organization that Warren works with, “No More Deaths.” Among various outreach efforts that the group is involved in, they are also known for leaving behind food and water for immigrants crossing the border.

Last year, No More Deaths released a report showing that 3,856 gallons of water were destroyed by border agents over a four-year period. The report included video footage of border agents kicking over gallons of water and pouring them out.

“We document how Border Patrol agents engage in the widespread vandalism of gallons of water left for border crossers and routinely interfere with other humanitarian-aid efforts in rugged and remote areas of the borderlands,” No More Deaths said in a press release.

Just after the press conference when these videos were released, Warren was arrested while providing two immigrants with food and water at a safe house in the middle of the desert known as “The Barn.” Border patrol apparently had the safe house under surveillance and decided to raid the location just hours after the controversial press conference.

A report last year from The Intercept detailed how federal agencies have been building a case against the organization for years, and revealed text messages that were sent between agents during the raid.

“After finding their way to ‘the Barn,’ Warren met them outside and gave them food and water for approximately three days. (One of the migrants) said that Warren took care of them in ‘the Barn’ by giving them food, water, beds and clean clothes,” the charges against Warren stated.

Warren’s attorney, Bill Walker, pointed out that Warren’s only crime was helping people survive.

“We don’t smuggle them, we don’t do anything to help them enter the United States, we do nothing illegal. This place that they raided is not in the middle of the desert, it’s not hidden anywhere. It’s in the city of Ajo, and it’s been used for a long time, not to help smuggle migrants, but to give medical care and food and water,” Walker told AZCentral.

Warren is not the first activist to get arrested for helping people survive the arduous journey across the border. In fact, eight other humanitarian workers, all from No More Deaths, are also facing similar charges from previous encounters with border patrol agents.

While the true extent of the death toll is unknown, a report from USA Today found that well over 7,209 lives have been lost while crossing the border in the past 20 years.

The report indicated that the actual number is likely far higher because “federal authorities largely fail to count border crossers when their remains are recovered by local authorities, and even local counts are often incomplete.”

Below is hidden camera footage taken by No More Deaths, showing how border patrol agents pour out the water that could have saved someone’s life.

Are We In A 'Galactic Zoo' Protected By Aliens? Scientists Meet To Investigate

Why haven’t we made contact with alien civilizations? Are we alone? Probably not.

After all, astronomers have already found 4,001 confirmed exoplanets in our Milky Way galaxy, and expect there to be over 50 billion exoplanets out there. A large amount of Scientists are gathering in Paris today, the question is different: why haven’t we made contact with alien civilizations?

What is the Fermi Paradox and the "Great Silence?" Back in 1950, Italian physicist Enrico Fermi asked 'where is everybody?' in what is now called the Fermi Paradox. It addresses a contradiction in astronomy, and can be summarized thus: if extraterrestrial life and even intelligent alien civilizations are not just likely, but highly probable, then why have none of them been in contact with us? Are there biological or sociological explanations for this "Great Silence?"

“We are very interested in the scientific approach used in the analysis of the Fermi Paradox and the search for intelligent life in the universe,” said Cyril Birnbaum and Brigitte David at the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie (Cité), the science museum in Paris that's hosting today's meeting. “The question 'Are we alone?’ affects us all, because it is directly related to humanity and our place in the cosmos.”

What are scientists doing in Paris? Today, leading researchers from the fields of astrophysics, biology, sociology, psychology, and history are meeting at the Cité. “Every two years, METI International (METI stands for messaging extraterrestrial intelligence) organizes a one-day workshop in Paris as part of a series of workshops entitled What is Life? An Extraterrestrial Perspective,” said Florence Raulin Cerceau, co-chair of the workshop and a member of METI’s Board of Directors.


The scientists are discussing some pretty insane-sounding questions:

Are extraterrestrials staying silent out of concern for how contact would impact humanity?

Do we live in a "galactic zoo?"

Should we send intentional radio messages to nearby stars to signal humanity’s interest in joining the "galactic club?"

Will extraterrestrial intelligence be similar to human intelligence?

Did life get to earth from elsewhere in the galaxy (interstellar migration)?


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"This puzzle of why we haven’t detected extraterrestrial life has been discussed often, but in this workshop’s unique focus, many of the talks tackled a controversial explanation first suggested in the 1970s called the 'zoo hypothesis,’” said Raulin Cerceau. Ah yes, the idea that we're being watched by aliens and ... perhaps even being protected by them.

What is the "zoo hypothesis"? This is a mind-warping idea that there are alien civilizations out there (no, not on Oumuamua) that know all about us, but purposefully hide from us. It certainly explains the "Great Silence." "Perhaps extraterrestrials are watching humans on Earth, much like we watch animals in a zoo," explains Douglas Vakoch, president of METI. "How can we get the galactic zookeepers to reveal themselves?" At a workshop, Vakoch proposed that humans should be more active in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. “If we went to a zoo and suddenly a zebra turned toward us, looked us in the eye, and started pounding out a series of prime numbers with its hoof, that would establish a radically different relationship between us and the zebra, and we would feel compelled to respond," he said.

"We can do the same with extraterrestrials by transmitting powerful, intentional, information-rich radio signals to nearby stars,” he said.

What is the "galactic quarantine" theory? Think the "zoo hypothesis" theory is insane? That's nothing compared to another theory about alien benevolence. “It seems likely that extraterrestrials are imposing a ‘galactic quarantine’ because they realize it would be culturally disruptive for us to learn about them,” said Jean-Pierre Rospars, the honorary research director at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique and co-chair of the workshop. “Cognitive evolution on Earth shows random features while also following predictable paths ... we can expect the repeated, independent emergence of intelligent species in the universe, and we should expect to see more or less similar forms of intelligence everywhere, under favorable conditions,” he added. “There’s no reason to think that humans have reached the highest cognitive level possible. Higher levels might evolve on Earth in the future and already be reached elsewhere.”

What does the Drake Equation try to do? A formula to estimate the number of technological civilizations in the Milky Way galaxy, the Drake Equation is an attempt to put the Fermi Paradox into numbers. The Drake Equation was posited in 1961 by Dr. Frank Drake, a radio astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, West Virginia.

What is the Drake Equation? OK, don't expect any answers here. The formula below, which comes from the SETI Institute might seem impressive, but it's mostly guesswork. Practically speaking, its purpose is not to find a definitive answer, but to keep the discussion going about the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. N = R* x fp x ne x fl x fi x fc x L

N = The number of civilizations in the Milky Way Galaxy whose electromagnetic emissions are detectable.

R = The rate of formation of stars suitable for the development of intelligent life.

fp = The fraction of those stars with planetary systems.

ne = The number of planets, per solar system, with an environment suitable for life.

fl = The fraction of suitable planets on which life actually appears.

fi = The fraction of life bearing planets on which intelligent life emerges.

fc = The fraction of civilizations that develop a technology that releases detectable signs of their existence into space.

L = The length of time such civilizations release detectable signals into space.

METI puts a special emphasis on those last three terms, which explore not just the frequency of intelligence-bearing worlds, but how long they last (before they get wiped out).

Radio astronomy Vs interstellar colonization. While for now, radio astronomy is the only practical way of humans sending messages out into the cosmos, says one scientist, only full-blown colonization of other stars is the only way to prove the existence of intelligent life. “It appears that although radio communications provide a natural means for searching for extra-terrestrial intelligence for civilizations younger than a few millennia, older civilizations should rather develop extensive programs of interstellar colonization," said Nicolas Prantzos, director of research of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), in advance of Monday's meeting. "This is the only way to achieve undisputable evidence, either for or against the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence, within their lifetime.”

Why aliens could be very different from humans. Why should they be even remotely similar? “The environment on an exoplanet will impose its own rules,” said Roland Lehoucq, an astrophysicist who works at the Commissariat à l’Énergie Atomique (CEA). “There is no trend in biological evolution: the huge range of various morphologies observed on Earth renders any exobiological speculation improbable, at least for macroscopic ‘complex’ life.” Skeptical that humans would have much in common with extraterrestrial life forms, Lehocq discussed "our persistent anthropocentrism in our understanding and description of alien life" and how difficult it is for humans to imagine extraterrestrial intelligence radically different from ourselves.

In short? We're too self-obsessed to even imagine extraterrestrial life, let alone find and communicate with it, and if there's not going to be proof within our lifetimes, we're not much interested in looking. Is there intelligent life out there? Probably, but we'll probably never find it.

Army of Police Storm Parliament Square to Arrest Climate Protesters

Dozens of Extinction Rebellion protesters were removed from Parliament Square after a battalion of police turned up.

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Hundreds of officers marched into the area information after the climate change activists set up camp. It was the most dramatic police action since the protests began on Monday, causing disruption across London’s transport networks.

Shaun Chamberlin, said, ‘We are no longer willing to stand by and watch life on earth be exterminated and accept that just waving banners and writing petitions and having them ignored is enough. ‘I think our soul, our conscience demands that we do more than that.’


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Shaun says he is ‘immensely proud’ of his mum Rosalie, 68, a retired nurse who is sitting down on the pavement hoping to be arrested for the first time in her life. He said: ‘She just feels, again, like she can’t in good conscience allow this ecocide society to continue on its current path.’

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He compared the Extinction Rebellion’s movement with resistance against South Africa’s apartheid and British rule in India, where ‘ordinary people saw other ordinary people being arrested’ and began to ask why.

‘In this case, the only thing they’re standing up for really is our right to have a future.’

Indigenous Peoples Go to Court to Save the Amazon From Oil Company Greed

It's 2019, we are supposed to be a civilised society that cares for our fellow humans

Yet on Feb. 27, 2019, hundreds of Indigenous Waorani elders, leaders and youth, took it upon themselves to travel to the city of Puyo, Ecuador. The entire tribe had left their homes deep in the Amazon rainforest. A peaceful protest, singing songs and carrying banners as they marched through the streets. Their mission. was to submit documents to the provincial Judicial Council, hopefully once they had launch the lawsuit , this would help stop the government from auctioning off their ancestral lands in the Pastaza region to oil companies.

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Indigenous Waorani elders, youth and leaders gathered in Puyo, Ecuador, on Feb. 27, to launch a lawsuit against the government's auctioning of their ancestral lands to the oil industry. Mitch Anderson / Amazon Frontlines


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The land in question

Is an eastern jungle province, its eponymous river is one of the more than 1,000 tributaries that feed the mighty Amazon, Pastaza encompasses some of the world's most biodiverse regions.

The lawsuit was Co-filed with the Coordinating Council of the Waorani Nationality of Ecuador–Pastaza (Pastaza CONCONAWEP), a political organization of the Waorani, and the Ecuadorian Human Rights Ombudsman against the Ecuadorian Ministry of Energy and Non-Renewable Natural Resources, the Secretary of Hydrocarbons and the Ministry of Environment.

The lawsuit alleges that the awareness rights granted to them under the Ecuadorian constitution were violated due to an improper consultation process prior to an oil auction, which would offer up the Waorani's lands in the Pastaza region to the highest bidding oil company.

The government's auction, announced in February of last year, included 16 new oil concessions covering nearly seven million acres of roadless, primary Amazonian forest across southeast Ecuador.


According to Amazon Frontlines, the nonprofit advocacy group supporting the Indigenous peoples, the hearing to argue the lawsuit was held in Puyo on March 13, but according to Amazon Frontlines, the group of assembled Waorani women broke into song in court and did not stop until the judge, unable to be heard over the songs of the Waorani women called the parties' lawyers to the bench and declared the suspension of the hearing until a translator was found.


The Waorani said that, in keeping with Waorani tradition, they would only accept a translator approved by their elder leaders. The Waorani have their own authorities and their own systems, which must be respected by the Western systems, Lina Maria Espinosa, attorney for the Waorani petitioners and a member of Amazon Frontlines' legal team, told the Independent Media Institute. "This case is an example of the country's obligation to apply intercultural justice."


Concessions vs. Constitutional Rights

The concessions overlap with the titled territories of the Shuar, Achuar, Kichwa, Waorani, Shiwiar, Andoa and Sápara nations, with one block located almost entirely within Waorani territory. If taken over by the fossil fuel industry, the Indigenous coalition warns, the health and livelihoods of the communities living in the area as well as the region's unique biodiversity and sensitive ecosystem will be threatened. But regardless of the environmental and sociocultural threat, the plaintiffs argue that the concessions trample on their constitutional rights.

In November 2018, following pressure from Ecuador's Amazonian Indigenous nationalities, Carlos Pérez, the nation's hydrocarbon minister, reduced the auction from 16 blocks to two. But it may end up being a pyrrhic victory, as the government said that the land may still be put on the auction block in the future. In addition, Pérez asserted that there should be no issue with the remaining two blocks, claiming that there aren't any Indigenous people there. However, according to Amazon Watch, a nonprofit based in Oakland, California, the two blocks overlap with the titled territory of the Sápara, Shiwiar and Kichwa nations, and sightings of Tagaeri-Taromenane have been reported in the area, which is located along Ecuador's border with Peru.

Adding insult to injury was the emergence in November 2018 of a leaked draft of a presidential decree that revealed the government's plans to permit oil drilling in a protected area established for the Tagaeri-Taromenane that had previously been off-limits to fossil fuel development.


Industrial Development vs. Indigenous People

Ecuador is one of the smallest oil producers in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) — only the Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon pump less. But that has not hindered it from making big deals with oil-hungry nations. In 2009, a year after Ecuador defaulted on around $3 billion worth of debt, then-President Rafael Correa made an oil-for-cash agreement with China. In exchange for selling his nation's crude oil to Petrochina, China provided Ecuador with a $1 billion loan.

Now the country seeks to attract investments totaling around $800 million to boost the production of oil, which the government maintains is critical to improving the nation's economy. "It's time for the private sector to invest," said President Lenín Moreno in the 2018 televised address, arguing that public-private partnerships in the infrastructure, oil, energy, mining and telecoms sectors could generate $7 billion of investment by 2021.

The government, as it has for decades, is yet again facing stiff opposition against the untrammelled industrial development of its Indigenous population. "We are demanding that the Ecuadorian state respects our territory and self-determination," said Nemonte Nenquimo, a Waorani leader and CONCONAWEP representative. "This fight didn't grow overnight; it's been the fight of the Waorani for years."

Indeed, the latest legal action launched in Puyo stems from the state's broken promise. In December 2017, following a two-week, 200-mile march by Indigenous activists from the Amazon jungle to Quito, the nation's capital, demanding an end to extractive industry development on their territories, the Moreno administration made a commitment to the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE), Ecuador's largest Indigenous organization, to end new oil and mining concessions in regions where local Indigenous nationalities had not been consulted. However, as the current suit alleges, the Waorani were not properly consulted.

Specifically, Article 57, section 7 of the constitution guarantees "free prior informed consultation, within a reasonable period of time, on plans and programs for prospecting, producing and marketing non renewable resources located on their lands which could have an environmental or cultural impact on them." The suit claims these rights were violated as the Waorani were not properly consulted prior to the announcement of the new oil concessions. In addition, the Ecuadorian government is also bound by two international agreements to consult with its Indigenous populations: Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO), ratified by the nation in 1998, and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was adopted in 2007.

However, many activists and Indigenous leaders ultimately don't want consultation at this point; they want oil development to end entirely. "We took the president at his word regarding the end of oil and mining concessions in our territories," said Jaime Vargas, CONAIE's president. "We don't need more consultation, however. Given the destruction in the northern Ecuadorian Amazon and in other areas of the world at the hands of the oil industry, we already have enough information to say 'No' to all oil activity."

Mitch Anderson, executive director and founder of Amazon Frontlines, which created a petition on behalf of the Waorani urging the Ecuadorian government to halt oil development on Indigenous land, told the Independent Media Institute:

"There are two different courses for the Ecuadorian government here. The first is an all-in bet on oil, and the last half-century has already shown us what that road leads to: environmental degradation, institutional corruption and further indebtedness to foreign interests, in this case China. Or they can take an urgently needed, forward-thinking path which supports forest protection, respects Indigenous rights and promotes investment in green economic alternatives that will ultimately contribute to the building of a sustainable future for the country and planet."

"Oil has not brought development for the Waorani," Alicia Cahuiya of the Waorani group told President Lenín Moreno at a meeting at the presidential palace in Quito in March 2018. "It has only left us with oil spills and sickness."


A History of Pollution

The current lawsuit is the latest salvo in a protracted battle between Indigenous people across Ecuador and fossil fuel interests that has been going on since 1993, when local tribes turned to the legal system to compel Texaco—and now Chevron, its parent company since 2000 — to clean up the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest and care for the people who have been sickened by the oil operations that began in 1967, when Texaco struck oil in the country's northeastern province of Sucumbíos.

In a 2008 Los Angeles Times op-ed about that legal battle, author and former public defender David Feige wrote that Texaco's environmental legacy in the region "includes as many as 16 million gallons of spilled crude — 50 percent more than the Exxon Valdez dumped in Prince William Sound, Alaska, in 1989; hundreds of toxic waste pits, many containing the chemical-laden byproducts of drilling; and an estimated 18 billion gallons of waste, or 'produced,' water, which some tests have shown to contain possibly cancer-causing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons at levels many times higher than those permitted in the U.S. All these pollutants were discharged in one of the most sensitive ecosystems in the world — the Amazon rainforest."

This troubling history makes the current administration's push to auction off land to oil drilling all the more ill-advised. "When we extract oil, it has a very high price for the environment, and sometimes, it's not paid by those who use the oil," said Antoni Rosell-Melé, an environmental chemist at the Autonomous University of Barcelona in Spain, who co-authored a 2017 study that found that the Amazon rainforest in neighboring Peru is suffering from extensive contamination from decades of fossil fuel development.

In that study, the researchers analyzed nearly 3,000 water samples from four Amazon rivers gathered between 1987 and 2013 and found an "extremely elevated presence of chloride, chromium, barium, lead and hexavalent chromium," industrial chemicals involved in oil drilling that are toxic to humans, wildlife and the environment. The researchers also estimate that oil extraction activities in the region have changed the overall chemical composition of the Amazon's waters, including 30 percent more salt than is naturally present.

The Indigenous fight in Ecuador is a fight that anyone who cares about biodiversity and the global climate should join. After all, the Ecuadorian Amazon isn't just one of the most sensitive ecosystems in the world — it's the key for the environmental health of the entire planet. Known as the "lungs of the planet," the Amazon rainforest "inhales" carbon dioxide and "exhales" oxygen, helping to stabilize the global climate by safely storing up to 140 billion metric tons of carbon. Deforestation by extracting and agricultural industries releases this carbon into the atmosphere, further accelerating global warming, the effects of which are felt across the world, from rising seas along U.S. coasts and melting Arctic glaciers, to wildfires in Europe and droughts in Africa.

Ecuador is also home to an astounding number of species. The nation is the eighth most biodiverse on Earth and the most biodiverse when considering the number of species by unit area. It is home to the highest number of species by area worldwide, including more than 1,500 species of birds, more than 840 species of reptiles and amphibians, and more than 300 species of mammals. Ecuador's Yasuni National Park boasts nearly 20,000 plant species, more flora than anywhere on Earth.

But despite its high level of biodiversity, Ecuador also has a low representation of species living within its protected areas. According to a 2014 study conducted by a team of researchers from the Technological University Indoamerica in Quito, there are more than 100 vulnerable, endangered and critically endangered species in the Ecuadorian Amazon for which conservation goals have been missed. Lawyers for the Indigenous communities fighting oil development can also refer courts to the nation's constitution, which provides "protection of ecosystems, biodiversity and the integrity of the country's genetic assets, [as well as] the prevention of environmental damage."

Unfortunately, the pro-drilling camp "doesn't see the forest," said Waorani leader Nenquimo in her keynote address at last year's Bioneers conference in Marin, California, which gathered leaders and activists involved in environmental protection and the rights of nature around the globe. "They see oil wells where we see gardens. They see money where we see life." Sharing her fight to protect her ancestral lands from exploitation by industrial development, Nenquimo warned that if given "a foothold in our lands," the oil industry "will bring money, sickness and contamination. They will try to divide our families and change our way of thinking."

"Our fight is not just a fight about oil," she said. "This is a fight about different ways of living. One that protects life and one that destroys life."


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Penti Baihua, a leader of the Waorani village of Bameno, has seen firsthand the destruction of life that the outside world has brought to his idyllic slice of the jungle — from the oil spills that drive out local species his people rely on for sustenance to the destruction of ancient rainforest to make room for new cocoa and coffee plantations. What will happen to him, his family, and his community if extractive and agricultural industries continue the destruction of his ancestral home? Baihua said simply, "We do not want to disappear."

F*ck That: The Funniest Guided Meditation ever

“Gradually, let the horse shit of the external world fade from your awareness. If you find your mind wandering to other thoughts, don’t let it concern you. Just acknowledge that all that shit is fucking bullshit.”

I Just discovered this video and thought is was so funny. It’s got to be the best guided meditation i have ever heard 

So sit back have a laugh and allow the external bullshit to fuck off world to kindly fuck off

Peace 

Dan Harrison. 

Host of the Ascend Podcast, The more I know, the more I don't know. But every day I ask questions and search for Truth...... Read more....

The Power of Taking off Your Shoes

Running barefoot is better than running with shoes for your working memory?

When Bruce Springsteen sang, “Baby, we were born to run,” he wasn’t kidding. For nearly 2 million years before NikeTM appeared, the original and natural running shoe was the bare foot. The prominent heel pad on modern running shoes encourages your foot to strike the ground heel first, causing a jarring impact that travels through the joints of the leg. In contrast to shod runners, barefoot runners land midfoot or forefoot, and have almost no jarring impact whatsoever, leading to less injury when it is done correctly.

Because most runners come to barefoot from wearing shoes, their form needs work. Feet land far off the center of mass, too hard, and hips don’t twist as they should. To correct this requires an increased proprioception of a number of things at the same time. Are your feet landing beneath your hips? Are you running gently? Are your feet landing in a straight line or a zigzag?

When you have all of these down, exteroception comes into play. You have to pay attention to sight stimuli (things you can see) and something else shod runners take for granted, touch stimuli (things your feet can feel). You have to look and feel where you are landing because if you don’t, it hurts. Landing on glass, a sharp stone, or even a twig can be very painful for feet that are used to stomping about with shoes on. Barefoot runners tend to think of runs in terms of how they feel: rough, soft, smooth, slippery, cold, or hot.

While that’s true whether you’re running with shoes or without them, barefoot runners have the added stimuli of touch. One potential benefit of this extra sensation is a heightened awareness of the environment around them. We think this is because when you are running with shoes, you can select what you focus on, ignoring the pebbles and twisting roots. But barefoot runners are aware of nearly everything under their feet—there is little irrelevant information because they need to be aware of most of the ground in order to avoid a painful misstep.

But can this extra attention when running barefoot have cognitive benefits, especially for our working memory?

Working Memory, our ability to recall and process information, is used throughout our lifespan. By improving it, we may be able to realize gains in key areas from school, to work, to retirement.

In the first study of its kind, we enlisted 72 participants between 18 and 44. Participants ran both barefoot and shod (wearing shoes) at a comfortable, self-selected pace, for approximately 16 minutes. Working memory was measured before and after running. When running barefoot, one often has to avoid stepping on potentially hurtful objects by using precise foot placement. Thus, participants were required to step on flat objects to simulate running barefoot in an outdoors context.

When the data were analyzed, we found a fascinating result. It turns out that what you have on your feet when you run is very important to your working memory. When runners ran barefoot, they had higher working memory than when they ran with shoes – an increase of 16%.

There was no significant increase in working memory when running with shoes. We also measured their speed and heart rate, but neither had any effect on working memory performance. Though participants stepped on the flat objects when shod and barefoot, only the barefoot condition saw improvements in working memory. It is possible that the barefoot condition required a more intensive use of working memory because of the extra tactile and proprioceptive demands associated with barefoot running, which may account for the working memory gains.

This makes sense. We used to live in Scotland, and as a family, we loved spending hours and hours of our weekends running barefoot through thinly cut trails in the Scottish Highlands, bouncing through moss, jumping over streams, gently dancing over sharp rocks, and avoiding the occasional pile of sheep-recycled grass. Though we had loads of fun, we quickly learned that if you don’t pay attention, you find yourself tumbling down a hill or slipping and landing on your backside.

Seeing proof that running, and barefoot running in particular, pumps up working memory power is exciting because it shows that it is possible to improve our mental abilities. When we work our body, we work our brain.

Text adapted from the Working Memory Advantage (Simon & Schuster)

Research study published in Perceptual and Motor Skills

 

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If you liked this post Please Share It With Your Friends, And You Never Know It Might Just Change Somebody Else's Life. Together we can make the world a healthier place!

 

 

Tracy Alloway Psychologist and Author. Researches working memory at the University of North Florida Read more

 

In And Out Of Movement

Being in and out of movement

A few years back, I was very intrigued by, and welcoming of the so-called `paleo´ movement.  I eagerly read all I could, travelled widely to attend various gatherings, gave a few lectures, wrote some articles, and in general saw the renewed interest in `real´ food and an unprocessed lifestyle as a damn good thing. What seemed to happen however, is that the `movement´ became bogged down in a pedantic squabble (and a lot of ego) over `what is paleo or not´. Instead of rejoicing in the spread of awareness about nutrients, movement, community, food sources and so on, people seemed intent on reinventing the `brand´. As an afterthought here, I think the majority of the silly debate revolved around and between those who had `newly discovered´ real food and a more unprocessed health lifestyle, rather than those of us who had grown up eating natural food and being outside all the time.

The takeout for me was a renewed interest in looking at what certain aspects of my diet and lifestyle were `non-nutritious´ and hindering my daily performance and interaction with the environment and those close to me. In other words, being more aware and conscious about the choices we make and the agency we have in determining our health pathway. Fast forward to the current interest in movement or `natural´ physical culture. Like `natural´ eating and `real food´, the idea of stripping our `training´ mindset back to its basics is about simplicity and connection, not the addition of unnecessary complexity. In fact, I see the opportunity for myself (who may be seen in some niche circles as a kind of representative for this `movement culture´) to highlight people’s awareness of what hindrances they allow or factor into their daily movement patterns.

In other words, to remove non-nurturing movement can be seen in analogous ways to the removal of refined, non-nutritious foodstuffs from their lifestyle. The key element I see to this idea of movement is to make the discussion so translucent and ephemeral, that any attempts by people to corner or trivialize the `culture´ become meaningless and ultimately mere digressions to the entire point of human movement. The `point´, dear movement-police-cadets-in-waiting, is that there is nothing to cling to, no benchmarks, there are no dichotomies, there are no patents, there is just a sharing of joy and wonder concerning the possibilities, freedoms and instincts of being a human animal in today’s society within our wider universe.

My philosophical interest in the nature of human movement and physicality stems from a childhood surrounded by both constant interactions with nature and a house full of books on Roman and Greek heroes, poets, gods and monsters (my father was a philosopher and historian of the Roman Empire and Hellenistic period). From a lifelong engagement in movement and mythology, I welcome the revival of attention these days in both the experiential and mystical interest in what it means to be a free and/or constrained human. Movement is a great base for this interest because it is simply the only given `law´ of our universe.  There is energy. There is movement. We are always in movement. We come out of movement, so why this desire to control or define something so vast? The ideas I’m working with currently relate to breaking down any barriers relating to the way we both theorize and undertake the experience of movement. Anything goes; only hardened egos beg to differ. Take your ´genre` to the party, add it to the pot of movement and enjoy the ride.

One of the most pervasive legacies of human development over the past few centuries has been the idea that the parts are somehow more important than the whole. It has become second nature to such an extent that the mere idea of an infinite collective is immediately cast in the pot of weirdo soup. Now much of this has to do with our taken-for-granted acceptance of science and/or religion, and the ensuing right or wrong dichotomies. We are quick to judge experience, even quicker to denounce wonder. The movement experience I’m working with on both philosophical and experiential levels asks different questions based upon the idea that category is the disorder and the demoralizing influence in life. Nature and our connectivity, through deeper awareness of the movement energetic on the other hand, is the heartspace for our exploration of this grandeur and our moving experience.

 

Our movement becomes an eternal moment of being alive and our sole task is to be present with each movement as a form of energy so powerful it brings us closer to unravelling the experience of simultaneous consciousness. This may appear Zen-like to some, or (add your own woo-woo) to others, but the real essence of stripping something so primordial down to its inception, is the simple liberation provided through the experience of just being in your movement. This seemingly illusive notion occurs whether we like it or not, but our awareness of the moment (prior to self-conscious judgement and analysis) requires surrendering and letting go of any ideas you may have about yourself. For many who are so focused on their niche specialization, this is a hard pill to swallow, but then again, why seek comfort in the illusion of some representation?

Through training, work, physicality, love, community, solitude, mysticism, illness, vitality or any number of states of being – movement – our baseline energetic, frames our patterns of choice and experience. Being aware of our place `in and out of movement´ helps us shape a world in which we take responsibility for self-actualizing our potentials and freedoms, via continual reflections upon the greater whole. The temptations to continue to base experience on social media identities, past mistakes, media scare-tactics, notions of culture, certain movement ´mastery` or a belly full of frozen spam may still occur, but needn’t detract from our wider journey.

You see, human nature is like a collection of debris floating down an endless river full of twists and turns. At each bend, whirlpools collect our fallibilities forming debris of delusion, until the rising flow strips away the stagnating illusion of harmony. We first acknowledge the flow and become aware of the whirlpools. Then, through a succession of choices, offer the movement of our heartspace until we find ourselves immersed in the currents of autonomous movement freedom. From a physical perspective, we can apply our modern-day terminology to this flow if we wish. Ideas of strength, skill, mobility, style etc can find their place in your practice for sure, but think of them as aspects of a greater flow of movement – a flow that transcends any spurious notion we may have about our mind or body being separate entities. By thinking about this idea, suddenly we must rethink everything we’ve ever been taught about physicality and progress in the development of our training.

We needn’t fear this possibility that allowing ourselves to be so deeply involved in our own movement patterns may just be the window we require to open up our realm of creativity and soulful interdependence with the wider cosmos. After all, philosophers and explorers have for centuries sought to ask questions and experience life based upon the ebb and flow of moving terrain. And certain mystics were never entirely sedentary. Everyone can in fact become better equipped at facing the challenges and wonders of life simply by placing our movement experience at the forefront of everything we do, and as part of the creation of what we might become.

A joyful and progressive movement lifestyle need not be a solitary affair, or certainly not one outsourced to external interests, but ought to be a constant learning experience you yourself discover as your connections widen. No matter what their background, make a concerted effort to read and seek out people with real life experience and see what your take out can be. Maybe nothing, but maybe some small aspect you can incorporate into your way of moving. Be vigilant and avoid letting commercial interests steal not only your hard earned cash, but also the most essential asset you have: your time and health. Remember, movement just is. It is life. So don’t waste time in debating what it is not.

So what are some practical steps we may wish to think about and act upon in this flirtation with our simultaneous energetic? As alluded to earlier with the ´paleo` movement, this idea of nurturing our awareness and experience of nutritious movement is one to keep in mind. Think of your intentions to discover your movement potentialities (whatever they may be) as a prelude to the removal of unnecessary clutter in order to experience your true movement autonomy. It takes practice and lots of curiosity, patience, self-love and gratitude. Stay tuned for the next post where I’ll outline some moves we can incorporate into our daily routines in order to bring some of these ideas into practical fruition.

Keep moving. That’s what we do.

 

 

 

 

Dr. Tom Mountjoy is an independent anthropologist and health researcher interested in a wide range of topics relating to the philosophy of science and the nature of human experience.Tom can be reached via email (tommountjoy@me.com) or via social media – Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube @primalmovers