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#1510 - December 05, 2012 02:24 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Freewill and Determinism

We have a dilemma in ethics. To hold a person responsible for his action we must
know that he freely chose to perform that action unhindered, and that he knew
the difference between right and wrong action.

The question is, did a person freely choose his action!

Determinism is the view that every action is fixed by a previous action or event
and the laws of nature. And each previous action is fixed by an even earlier
action, and so on ad infinitum, an infinite regression. And this theory is a
foundation of physics. This theory holds that we really have no freewill.

It is strange to say that we have no freewill and we did not really choose the
actions we did. But it is a fact that we cannot change the past, something over
which we have no control, and we cannot change the (present) laws of nature and
physics.

A noted philosopher, Van Inwagen says, "things could be different in the present
only if things had been different in the past, or if the laws of nature could be
changed. Given the past, the present could not have been otherwise."

A person throws a ball. The force of the throw, and the gradient of the throw,
plus the air resistance and gravity, tells us exactly where the ball will fall,
and at what time. The exact place and time of the fall of the ball can be
predicted.

This outcome can only be changed if;

1. we can go back to the past and change the force of the throw and/or the
angle of the throw,

or,

2. change the laws of gravity.

Since neither is possible, the outcome is pre-determined!

Sam Harris, a neuroscientist, says our choices are predetermined by the
subconscious, and seconds later presented to the conscious mind as a decision,
and therefore we 'think' we freely made a choice.

This is the conflict between the freedom of the will and determinism, and the
repercussions are that we may not be able to hold a person responsible for his
actions.

However there are alternate views, like the Compatibilism theory, which says
free will is compatible with determinism.

Secondly, whether a person knows what is right and what is wrong, is another
area of controversy that has been debated for millenniums.

Pathma


Edited by Pathmarajah (December 22, 2012 10:33 AM)

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#1511 - December 23, 2012 02:12 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Western Ethics

Each society developed its moral knowledge over time and children were brought up with this understanding of moral knowledge, and this formed the basis of its ethics, from which right and wrong were established, and from there as common law in an unwritten social contract.

In the west, philosophers like Aristotle wrote that as we are able to think and reason we can determine what is our purpose in life and fulfill that purpose by virtuous acts, for virtue is a necessity, a key condition for happiness. We can acquire virtue by observing virtuous persons and perfecting ourselves by making virtuous deeds a habit over time.

Hume argued that desires are the ultimate motivating factor in all our actions and there is always an element of bias in our moral judgements. Desires (passions) are our deepest wants and in accomplishing this we use reason to justify our actions.

To Hume a right action is what causes approbation in a knowledgeable person who has a stable and general perspective, a true judge who is able to empathize. Feeling approbation (Humean Ethics) versus what is right (Aristotlian Virtue Ethics)" are some arguments in ethics.

When we need to make a decision, resolve a dilemma, make a judgement call, invariably we resort to choosing based on some priority or value. It is desires that motivate us and acts as the demarcator for what is right and wrong. Kant believes that our actions are virtuous if the intent was good and the action was moral or universalisable, like the Golden Rule - do to others as you would want them to do to you. In Kantian deontology, actions based on passions cannot be moral as they have an inherent bias. A virtuous action would be based on a universal value applied consistently by everyone, and on across the board principle.

We are thinking, empathising beings and live in an organised world that abides by rules. That immediately spells reason, duty and a need to curb our desires and passions by universalisable maxims.

Mill focuses on the consequences of an action - does it produce greater happiness or benefit for the greater number of people? If it is so, then it is a right action.

While earlier philosophers stressed on reasons for actions, Mill stressed on the value of an action. For such Utilitarians, if an action is for the greater good, then it is acceptable as moral.

This philosophy leads to majoritarianism in a society with majoritarian rule and privileges. If every nation were to apply its policies on GHGN for its own population and vested national interests and its foreign policy is based on that, national interests, then surely there will be international strife. (But this wouldn’t be utilitarianism strictly speaking, for utilitarians all human beings counts equally; those in one’s own nation or group aren’t preferred. In practice that may not be always so.)

Rawls' Contractarianism places importance on equality in a society, with the majority extending care to the minorities and disadvantaged. Here we have a source of modern developed societies. Most definitely equality would be the first requisite in any association, for there cannot be harmony and social agreement in any community if there are political inequalities. And in any society there has to be mechanisms to ensure for the common and greater good, distributive justice, failing which there would be extreme socio-economic disparities and a justification for dissent and rebellion.

It is obvious we are to live in harmony among ourselves, and in harmony with nature and the animal kingdom. This requires the protection of life, liberty and equality, and the minimum disruption to nature. This means universal rules to be agreed and followed by all.

In Dancy's Particularism, there are no principles in ethics, everything is context sensitive. It means whether an action is morally right depends on each context. Such thinking is a must in jurisprudence for justice to prevail.
Singer brings to the fore non-speciesism, which says there should be no discrimination against non-human species as they deserve rights too. Ryder argued in a pamphlet that: "Since Darwin, scientists have agreed that there is no 'magical' essential difference between humans and other animals, biologically-speaking. Why then do we make an almost total distinction morally? If all organisms are on one physical continuum, then we should also be on the same moral continuum."

Western ethnics has covered reason, virtue, passion, social approbation, duty, the consequence of actions, equality and rights of animals as well as the Golden Rule of western ethics - do to others as you would have them do to you. In comparison, in Indian ethics the Golden Rule would be ahimsa - non violence in thought word and deed to all living things.

Unlike in the past, the world is globalised now and human rights are universally agreed on, and most laws and conventions in most nations are based on this, with most incorporating both the golden rules as an unwritten convention. This I think would be the source of invariants of ethical principles.

Pathma

References:
1. Aristotle, Nichomachean Ethics
2. Hume, Of the influencing motives of the will, and, Moral distinctions not derived from reason
3. Kant, The good will
4. J.S.Mill, Utilitarianism
5. John Rawls, A Theory of Justice
6. Jonathan Dancy, An Unprincipled Morality
7. Peter Singer, All animals are equal
8. Ryder, Experiments on Animals

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Edited by Pathmarajah (December 24, 2012 02:51 PM)

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#1513 - January 14, 2013 12:32 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Indian Ethics

Indian ethics would include non violence (ahimsa) which is the golden rule, dharma (duty), wealth (porul/artha), love (inbam/kama), yamas (do not), niyamas (do), reincarnation, karma, worship, jaati, varna, endogamy, observing holy days and festivals, pilgrimage, stage marker sacraments, a form of non-speciesism (animals rights and reverence), vegetarianism, reverence of mother, father, guru and god, service (karma yoga), charity (dharmam/tarumam), the theoretical inequality between stratified ethnic groups, the inequality of sexes, the inequality of outcastes and foreigners.

The theoretical formulation of ahimsa is part of classical Hindu ethics. However, the marginalization of people in the caste framework does not qualify to be called ahimsa. The practice of ahimsa (especially as vegetarianism) is part of Jain and South-Indian/Gujarati ethics, not Hindu ethics, a careful distinction of theory and practice. Ahimsa is not a pan-Indian ethic.

The Tamil concept of Aram is justice (but which is casually and erroneously translated as virtue and dharma). Aram co-existed with another concept of Maram; ara is used with reference to virtue, justice, equity, actions taken with due consideration of context and custom; maram, on the other hand, is used to denote valour, courage, wrath, hatred, killing and strength. Hence, it is quite different from the concept of dharma. Aram may be compared with Dancy's Particularism where there are no hard and fast principles but stress is on context sensitiveness.

The cardinal principle of law in that divine work is righteousness or aram. Persons who administered justice during the Sangam period were governed by the principles of equity embodied in the word, aram.

The Tirukural and Aati Chudi of Auvaiyar would represent universal ethics applicable to all mankind in all ages.

I would not like to do a comparative study of western and eastern ethics as the latter fails on the first count of equality of all without which no justice is possible (Rawls Original Position).

Pathma

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#1516 - March 09, 2013 09:44 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
The mind-body problem: Why might we think the mind is not identical to the brain?

The question is, whether there is numerical identity of mind state and brain state, and not just mere correlation.

1. one is mental, the other is physical.

2. the body has a size (extension) but the mind does not. If the mind were identical with the body, it would also need to have size.

3. the body has a spatio-temporal location, the mind does not, although it seems the mind is in the brain region.

4. the mind (excluding the subconscious) has intentions and issues commands and the body executes it (usually).

5. the body can survive temporarily without the mind (brain dead, Anencephaly), but the mind may have phantom limbs and experience phantom pain.

6. the mind is a series of events, the processing of sense perceptions, thinking and recalling from memory involving neural activity, whereas the body is a platform for this processing to take place. As an analogy the body is the circuit but the mind is the current that flows through the circuit. The current and the circuit are distinct.

7. one can fantasize, say about sex and setoff neural firings and be aroused - a mental state triggering a brain state. There is causality.

8. one can take drugs and setoff neural firings and experience a state of euphoria - a brain state triggering a mental state. There is causality.

9. there are no empirical studies to show mind and brain states are the same. Empiricism on a non-physical state is impossible.

Mental and physical states have different properties as shown above, and bi-directional causality, therefore they can't be the same states, there is no numerical identity.

Pathma

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#1517 - April 12, 2013 09:50 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
The Mind-Body Problem II

Does the mind exist? If so, where is it located? Surely something that exists must be located somewhere! Does it have a centre? Is it an entity separate and independent from the brain? Is it controllable, a tool that we can use, or is it just a feedback mechanism of the sensory input that it receives? Does it follow the laws of determination and that we have no control over it, or is it anomalous and beyond laws?

Every culture formulated its own theories to understand the mind and body. Those who believe that man consists of the mind and the body are dualists. Those who believe that man is the body alone, and the mind is a mere by-product of the workings of the faculties, are monists.

In siddhanta, the composition of god, soul and the world is categorised into 36 components or tattvas. The mental faculties (antahkarana) together with the organs of perception (indriyas) is part of prakriti (nature), part of the astral body (manomaya kosa). It is nonreal or asat. No explanation (bridge laws) is provided as to how the astral body connects with and influences the physical body.

In western philosophy it was Rene Descartes who in the 17th century proposed that man consists of two 'substances', the body and the mind, or Dualism. By sheer logic and reasoning he established that 'I think, therefore I exist'. But he was unable to explain how a non physical entity could influence/interact with a physical entity. Since then many monist theories have come to pass.

Can one reasonably be a dualist in this day and age?

Dualism is the theory that man consists of mind and body, two separate things, both of which are made of different substances or properties, but the two are mingled or interactive. This is the view held by all mankind throughout history. Our intuition and common sense tells us we have a mind that is not material.

In the 19th century scientists came to accept the physical closure of the material world, that all physical events have material causes, and these endless causal chains don't allow any space for non material causes, that there is only the body.

The main objection to dualism is, how can there be mental and physical interaction, unless mental events are physical events. And if there are indeed interactions, where does the interaction take place and how does it do so? Are there any bridge laws to support such conclusions? This is the mind-body problem and several theories have attempted to overcome this problem, which we shall now consider.

One is the Identity Theory which states that the mind is brain activity, mental states are identical to brain states and there is numerical identity between mind and brain states. However this theory does not explain the bridge laws of how the brain and mind interact, and does not explain qualia (the experience of a sensation) as Kripke pointed out.[1]

Another is Functionalism, that brain states are a mental state with a particular role, which in turn determines behaviourism. It is a system that instantiates the functional state of, say, pain but without having any pain qualia. According to functionalism there is no difference between the subjective experiences of red and green qualia. Such a view reduces humans to robots and zombies and is simply unacceptable as argued by Ned Block.[2]

Eliminativism goes further and claims that the mind does not exist, we have no beliefs, no desires, no intentions, and there is no qualia, and that reason explanations are unnecessary. If there is indeed no mind, then there can be no thoughts and beliefs, and by extension, no truths, which is illogical, flies in the face of intuition and reality. Whereas a belief is our response to the sensory input. We see the world, and we form views and beliefs about it, then act on those.

Epiphenomenalism is the theory that consciousness and mental states are an incidental side-effect or by-product of physical and brain activity but they have no causal efficacy. The mind does not cause any event. If the mind is causally inert, cannot influence anything, then what use of it to exist? Common sense says there are causal mental-physical interactions; I desire to type a post, and my hands do as I command them. There is a cause, and an effect.

On the other hand, Anomalous Monism comes close to solving the mind body problem, stating that while there are mind-brain causal interactions, there are no strict laws that govern such causation. A causally efficacious mental property, say a desire, leading to a physical property of neural activation to fulfil that desire, causes a single event to take place. Although called Anomalous Monism, this is a form of dualism - Property Dualism, and it accepts mental states as causally efficacious in the form of reasoned explanations. But this theory too does not explain qualia.

Thus we see there are serious problems in physicalism, doubt and skepticism over such theories mainly because it does not accept the existence of the mind, or of it being causally efficacious, and does not explain consciousness (awareness) and qualia (the experience of say, kicking a ball). It is common sense that we seek to re-experience a pleasurable qualia, like listening to good music and avoid distasteful qualia, like pain. In fact, qualia would be the main driver in our lives. It fuels our desires and ambitions. The experience of seeing the culling of baby seals drives us to fight for animal rights!

It is not simply that the body has size, but that extension (filling space) is essential to it, which means that if the mind were identical with the body as some physicalist theories suggest, it would also need to have a similar size. Another theory, Externalism, says the mind has extension, but outside the body, and the mind would not exist if the world did not exist, as there would be nothing to perceive. Thus restating the duality of mind and body.

We also have instances where the body can survive temporarily without the mind (as in brain dead and Anencephaly), and other cases where the mind experiences phantom limbs and phantom pain, which physicalism cannot adequately explain.

There are hundreds of Near Death Experiences (NDE) studied by psychiatrists which suggest that not only we have a mind, but that it is separate and independent of the body. Physicalism ignores these data and is unable to account for it.

Rupert Sheldrake has proposed Morphic Resonance, that there is a morphic field, a universal database, that a particular lifeform 'tunes into' and becomes part of an extended group mind, where the group transmits information and receives feedback from it.[3] It establishes that the mind is separate from the body. Here too physicalism ignores these data as 'not peer reviewed and published', nevertheless they are unable to falsify it.

Meditators experience a state of no qualia, a qualia-less qualia while being fully conscious and aware, suggesting a state that transcends the body, as well as the mind. This phenomenon is entirely ignored by science!

Finally, there are no conclusive empirical studies to show mind and brain states are the same, or that a mental state does not exist, as empiricism on a non-physical state is impossible.

In the absence of adequate explanations of mind and body by physicalist theories, we are left with the traditional belief in dualism, daily ratified by our experiences, intuition and common sense.

Pathma

Bibliography
1. Saul Kripke, Naming and Necessity.
2. Ned Block, Troubles with Functionalism.
3. Rupert Sheldrake, The Presence of the Past, The Poetic Mind.

Links:
1. The Science Delusion - Rupert Sheldrake [must watch]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JKHUaNAxsTg

2. A monkey controls a robot, and a distant avatar, with its brain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CR_LBcZg_84&feature=em-subs_digest-vrecs

3. Consciousness Without Brain Activity: Near Death Experiences - Dr. Bruce Greyson
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_qBIw7qyHU

4. Can Consciousness Influence Brain Events? - Dr Mario Beauregard
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RmCBJJjKMWE

5. Dr Peter Fenwick on Near Death Experience (NDE)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4PmjKn1zPE

6. 10 Mind & Brain Mysteries
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYwAPF0mh-U

Alternate view - the mind exists
7. John Searle is the leading western philosopher of the day. He says the mind exists, that it is a biological phenomenon like photosynthesis. And it functions causally. An intangible, a nonphysical entity exists! And such a nonphysical entity can influence a physical event.

This goes against the whole basis of western philosophy which does not admit to the existence of the mind or consciousness. And if it acts causally, then determinism*, a lynchpin of science, is questionable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_OPQgPIdKg

An older video by Searle where he explains some details
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XTDLq34M18

*Determinism: Every action is fixed by a previous action or event and the laws of nature, ad infinitum, an infinite regression. There is no freewill.

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Edited by Pathmarajah (July 08, 2013 11:19 AM)

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#1518 - April 12, 2013 09:55 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

The Scientific Method

All along in history, in every culture, man has observed the world and tried to understand and explain phenomena in various ways. This led to discoveries and subsequently inventions to make life more comfortable. However these discoveries and explanations were sporadic, ad hoc, not systematic and largely not followed through with development and expansion as they lacked a sufficiently valid method of observation, measuring and theorising, given the era.

Later, the modern scientific method was developed 500 years ago by a long line of natural philosophers from Francis Bacon onwards who laid the foundations for modern science.

This consists of making observations, collecting data, measuring and tabulating it, and making a generalisation out of it, known as a hypothesis. We now have some evidence for the hypothesis.

Once we have some data and a hypothesis that is based on the data, then we are able to test it. We do this by conducting an experiment to prove the hypothesis. Often experiments are repeated many times, by different persons, based on new and larger sample size so as to validate the hypothesis and experiments. We are sometimes required to conduct the same experiments with variables inserted to falsify the hypothesis. Then we are able to confirm or deny the hypothesis.

This hypothesis can be verified by other researchers who may collect their own rainfall data in the same area and confirm or falsify the hypothesis that November and December are the rainy season. Rainfall measured over many years and decades would form a large sample size and data base and fortify the hypothesis.

When a hypothesis has been tested with experiments and research it becomes a theory. A hypothesis must be testable or it remains a claim, an opinion that is not much of use.

The advantages of this scientific method leads to theories and laws that are universal, singular, testable, reproduceable, explanatory, predictive and separates fact from fiction. Scientific methods. We see the enormous inventions and applications of the scientific method in everyday life - a testament that science explains and works.

However, science is about our empirical observation of the world, of that which exists and can be observed, a view that our senses receive, the appearances and not necessarily the reality of the world. Further, we are entering into realms that are unobservable; 96% of the contents of the world are unobservable and cannot be adequately tested or falsified, like subatomic particles, dark energy, dark matter, black holes and multiverse, which are of semiotic in nature. These can only be theorised as plausible or mathematically proven. Laudan says empirically successful theories have been time and again shown to not map isomorphically on to the reality. We have observed Uncertainty and Relativity in nature, and laws previously thought to be universal is now found to be localised in spacetime. Our history of science has shown time and again that most theories have ultimately been proven inaccurate and has been refined or replaced by newer and better theories, sometimes in quantum leaps or paradigm shifts. Despite all that the scientific method remains the ultimate paradigm of rational enquiry.

Pathma

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#1519 - April 12, 2013 09:56 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

What is the difference between science and pseudoscience?


Knowledge is ever increasing and old alternative views gives way to new ones. There were discoveries and subsequently inventions in every culture, however these discoveries and explanations were sporadic, ad hoc, not systematic and largely not followed through with development and expansion as they lacked a sufficiently valid method of observation, measuring and theorising, given the era. Many of the old unsystematic methods survives today as non-sciences or pseudosciences. Today a lack of public concern for what is science and what is not, creates the space for pseudosciences to persist.

Science is the search for knowledge of the world and in this regard over time it has established a scientific method that is generally agreed by all. This consists of making observations, collecting data, measuring and tabulating it, and making a generalisation out of it, known as a hypothesis. We now have some evidence for the hypothesis.

Once we have some data and a hypothesis that is based on the data, then we are able to test it. We do this by conducting an experiment to prove the hypothesis. Often experiments are repeated many times, by different persons, based on new and larger sample size so as to validate the hypothesis and experiments. We are sometimes required to conduct the same experiments with variables inserted to falsify the hypothesis. Then we are able to confirm or deny the hypothesis. When a hypothesis has been tested with experiments and research it becomes a theory. A hypothesis must be testable or it remains a claim, an opinion that is not much of use.

The advantages of this scientific method leads to theories and laws that are universal, singular, testable, reproduceable, explanatory, predictive and separates fact from fiction. We see the enormous inventions and applications of the scientific method in everyday life - a testament that science explains and works.

Pseudoscience is a claim, belief, or practice which is presented as scientific but does not adhere to a valid scientific method, lacks supporting evidence, plausibility, cannot be reliably tested, or otherwise lacks scientific status. Pseudoscience is often characterized by the use of vague, exaggerated or unprovable, and over-reliance on confirmation rather than rigorous attempts at refutation, a lack of openness to evaluation by other experts, and a general absence of systematic processes to rationally develop theories (Thagaard).

The basis of science is that;
1. nature exists,
2. all natural phenomena have natural causes,
3. nature is governed by laws,
4. the laws can be known,
5. knowledge comes from observation and experiments.

Pseudosciences disregards one or more of the above criteria. Astrology for instance, which I discuss in this paper, disregards 5 and 6 above. Theories not backed by evidence is pseudoscience.

A pseudoscience also does not follow a method that can be verified and validated. For instance Ptolemy's astrology which is based on a geocentric world which does not take into account several planets, where the position and motion of the sun, moon and planets are supposed to influences events and determines fate on earth and its inhabitants. It arbitrarily divides humanity into many groups based on a 12-zodiac system, and based on constellations the planets at the moment of birth. A belief that the position and motion of the planets and constellations in conjunction with the moon influences our daily lives, events, character and fate, even diseases - a dangerous fatalism with vague and ambiguous predictions as well as clinically unproven cures. In science there is no arbitrariness.

We have no data that supports the hypothesis that planets influence events and life on earth (except for gravity which is very weak). We expect to see reams and reams of data showing the correlation between planetary positions and movements their effects on events on earth. That is unavailable, condemning it to a non-science!

Planets are too distant to have any gravitational or radiative effects on earth. There is no basis to show how and why the zodiacs were fixed the way they were. What we have is the testimony of Ptolemy and other astrologers in their writings, their word, that there is planetary influence. A hypothesis not supported by data is hearsay. Micheal Gauquelin conducted probability surveys and found that there is no significant correlation between careers and astrological sings and zodiacs.

There are no set rules and there are many different systems by different astrologers. In the case of Indian astrology there are 30 different calendars, their spring equinox being fixed to the stars about 16 centuries ago, and has been drifting away from the seasons since then, now amounting to 22 days in error, but there has been no corrections, making all of them fatally flawed as there is no provision for corrections as leap years. When the calendars are wrong, no reading could be right. Again, 27 equal divisions of the sky were arbitrarily made based on constellations, and in certain such cases of equal division, some stars overlap whereas some stars do not get enveloped in that range at all, thus falling in the next star division. Besides two or three constellations occupy the same sky at any time but this is disregarded.

Pseudoscientific claims are non falsifiable (Popper). Neither is there any attempt to correct anomalies (Quine); it is not progressive as it has changed little since Ptolemy, and added nothing to its explanatory powers. There is no progression as a historically extended research project (Lakatos) and despite the discover of new planets and more accurate astronomical data the theory is not updated with this new information.

There is no explanation for the different lives and lifespans of twins, triplets, quadruplets, as well as that of different people born at the same time and place. Space travel, moon landings, assassination of world leaders, 9/11, the 2004 Asian Tsunami, Arab Spring and other such large scale natural disasters and human events of magnitude were not predicted by anyone. There have been no stunning predictions (Lakatos). Surely no one believes that all 295,000 who died during the asian tsunami were born on the same place and time! It is a historical failure in predictions. The community of practitioners do not agree on most fundamental issues, rather most cling to old theories religiously like a revelation. It is a belief system. Alternative systems have arisen like psychiatry and psychology which attempts to explain behaviorism unlike long static astrology which explains in terms of empirically non existent planetary influences.

To summarise, pseudosciences fails on data showing the correlation, falsifiability, lack of stunning predictions, explanations and lack of theory change.

Pathma

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#1527 - May 07, 2013 02:53 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Low IQ & Conservative Beliefs Linked to Prejudice


Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative
ideologies,
the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and
resistance to change,
attitudes that can contribute to prejudice...

(substitute racism with casteism and sexism)

http://www.livescience.com/18132-intelligence-social-conservatism-racism.html

Pathma

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#1532 - May 09, 2013 10:33 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Religion - The Bad Parent

A good video on irrational belief systems. Good to keeps things in perspective.

http://www.youtube.com/user/QualiaSoup

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#1536 - June 05, 2013 05:48 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Indra and Brahma on free speech and expression


Asuras do not like to be criticized. They only want to be spoken of in glowing
terms. They do not see it as an opportunity for reflection, introspection and
self examination. But Indra and Brahma ruled that there shall be free speech and
free expression within the four corners of the stage.

We all know that today the world and every forum is a stage and everyone an
actor and audience simultaneously. Anywhere you see people averse to criticisms
know that they have asuric qualities.

Rushdie on Natyashastra
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=akeA0EvLEbs

Pathma

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#1539 - September 14, 2013 10:50 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
The other Big Bang: the Cambrian Explosion - Big Bang of Life!

“Big bang” isn’t just an astronomy term. Biologists use it when describing the rise of life on Earth, too: Dozens of modern animal groups evolved in a relatively short time frame in the early Cambrian period, between 540 million and 520 million years ago. And according to a new Australian study on the subject, this biological “big bang” actually fits quite well with what we already know about the processes of evolution.

This big bang event has perplexed science for over a century. Michael Lee, University of Adelaide biologist and the study’s lead author, noted that researchers in his field call it “Darwin’s Dilemma,” because natural-selection pioneer Charles Darwin had said that the emergence of so many species in so little time seemed to be at odds with evolution as he understood it. Opponents of evolutionary theory have even used this big bang event as evidence for intelligent design or creationism.

But Lee and his colleagues beg to differ. They examined the rates of evolutionary change that occurred during this 20-million-year time period while working with the Natural History Museum in London to map out and analyze the genetic and anatomical differences to be found among today’s myriad animal species.

Then they compared the present-day species diversity with the earlier menagerie of prehistoric life as indicated in the fossil records, and they built mathematical models to connect the two and discern the rate at which the differences would have accumulated. Their final conclusion: Simple evolutionary processes do fully explain the rapid debuting of so many new species in the Cambrian big bang.

The arthropods—which include insects, spiders, and crustaceans, around 80% of Earth’s animal species in total— were the most successful and diverse group of animals to evolve in the Cambrian explosion. So Lee and his colleagues zeroed in on them. The Cambrian big bang witnessed an overall rate of evolution that was four to five times faster than the rate of any other era, including ours.

That sounds huge, but Lee and his colleagues found that it made sense given the changes that arthropods and their environments were going through at the time. Exoskeletons, jointed legs, multifaceted eyes, and the ability to actively swim all first appeared in this time frame. So did antennae and biting jaws.

The researchers noted that the arthropods were breaking into new environments in this time, and all species are more likely to make swift evolutionary changes when they reach new environments. Darwin’s theory of evolution, they conclude, is in no danger of going extinct.

Read more: http://www.sciencerecorder.com/news/scientists-big-bang-of-life-eons-ago-fits-theory-of-evolution

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#1540 - September 25, 2013 09:56 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Timeline of Creation and Life

With much more information available today with most puzzle pieces in place, we are able to formulate the timeline of creation and life.

13.7 billion years ago when nothing existed, there was no realm of air, no sky beyond it, not even time and space, when death was not then, nor was there aught immortal, when no sign was there of the day's and night's divider, when Nothing was there, the Singularity they say today, breathless, breathed by its own nature, apart from it was nothing whatsoever. Then spontaneously, there was a big bang, and spacetime unfolded and undiscriminated chaos was there.

The energy released immediately became particles, some 4% of which which coalesced into planets and galaxies over the next eight billion years. The remaining 96% of unused stardust remains as space debris, unobservable dark matter and dark energy plasma, till today. Yet mostly space is there, matter being infinitely small in comparison. Rightly, this universe should have been called Void rather than a world of matter. Because that is what creation is, mostly Void. And cold.

Between 4.5 to 3.8 billion years ago after the solar system, earth and moon was in place, meteorites slammed into icy planets creating shock waves releasing heat, and molecules compacted into amino acids - the building blocks of life. Over time these amino acids became single cellular organisms 3.9 billion years ago. Life had begun spontaneously!

We split from bacteria 3.5 billion years ago, and from plants life between 2.4-1.7 billion years ago, but humans and bananas still share 60% of the dna. The Universal Genetic Code is 'universal' because it is used by all known organisms as a code for DNA, mRNA, and tRNA. The universality of the genetic code encompasses animals (including humans), plants, fungi, archaea, bacteria, and viruses. But isn't it amazing that all life feeds off each other? We eat siblings. We are all parasites!

Between 540 million and 520 million years ago during the Cambrian Era, in that short period of 20 million years when the environment was just right, a multitude of species, mostly anthropoids and crustaceans, proliferated. This is the Big Bang of Life. From then, by way of evolution and natural selection, amniotes or tetrapods evolved into complex species like amphibians and lizards.

The continents moved 250 million years ago, and climatic change wiped out over two-thirds of all land-dwelling species and a whopping 95 percent of ocean-dwelling species. A mass extinction! The surviving and best adapted reptiles came to rule the planet. Dinosaurs came and went. Small primates like monkeys, apes, lemurs, baboons, tarsiers survived the second cataclysm 65 million years ago.

Hominids appeared about 23 million years ago, and 6 million years ago stood upright and viewed the horizon. Over time other species like Neanderthals and Denisovans mated with humans, a mixing of species and muddying the waters as they say, a mixing of dna and changing of traits. Inter-specie mating is very rare in the animal kingdom. Our females must have been irresistible then, as they are today! Thank you ladies, we know what you did last pleistocene! I hope it was fun. We have Neanderthal and Denisovan dna in us, are 7 billion strong, depleting the planet's resources, wiping out species like in the last cataclysm, and one another. I wonder where this unique self-destruct gene came from. After their lasting contributions for the betterment of homo sapiens, Neanderthals and Denisovans exited themselves, having the last laugh.

The rest is history as Michio Kaku says.

13.7 billion years - creation
4.6 billion years - solar system is formed and stable
4.4 billion years - moon is formed and stable in earth orbit
3.9 billion years - first prokaryotic cells, life begins
3.5 billion years - last universal ancestor - a split between bacteria and eukarya cells
1.7 billion years - we split from plants
1.2 billion years - multicellular organisms
580 million years - first large complex multicellularity, specialised cells
520 million years - Cambrian Explosion - the Big Bang of Life
360 million years - animals appear on land
320 million years - synapses develops, leads to mammals
250 million years - the continents moved, Cataclysm I.
225 million years - Dinosaurs appear
160 million years - eutharian (placentalia) mammals appear, with placenta rather than egg laying
65 million years - meteor strike, Cataclysm II, dinosaurs and large animals wiped out
8.8 million - hominids separate from apes
6.5 million years - hominids stood upright
200,000 years - first homo sapiens, and mated with Neanderthals and Denisovans

If the above time scale was represented by a clock, humans appeared in the last fifteen seconds of the last minute of the hour, a mere blip in time.

There is another date to keep. Our closest neighbour the Andromeda galaxy is hurtling towards the Milky Way, and Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) is 4 billion years from now, when the two become twin pulsars smashing into each other. But no worries. In 1.75 million years time the earth will be in the Hot Zone, scorching, oceans evaporating and terminating all life - Cataclysm III. No one will witness the next cataclysm, not even the Mars bound earthlings! Its best to relax, stay at home and sip chicalada.

Question. There was already spontaneous life here. So when did souls appear and enter animal bodies?

This is in the realm of revelations, not academia. According to the Lemurian Scrolls of the Dravidian Shastras from the Lord Subramaniam Library as 'seen' by Sivaya Subramuniya of Kauai Aadheenam, it is approximately after the Cambrian explosion when there was a flourishing of flora and fauna. Souls led by Lord Muruga arrived to this planet from the cold Pleiades (Krittika) Constellation which is a distance of 385 light years away. We are Pleiadeans! Since we did not have physical bodies, distance and travel was not a major problem.

sources:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/23...html?ir=Science
Harvard
Imperial College
onezoom.org
http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/h...36dd_story.html

Lemurian Scrolls
http://www.himalayanacademy.com/resources/books/ls/ls_introduction.html
"The Lemurian Shastras, which make up the first half of these scrolls, unfold a remarkable story of how souls journeyed to Earth in their subtle bodies some four million years ago. The narrators of the ancient texts explain that civilization on their native planets had reached a point of such peacefulness that spiritual evolution had come to a standstill. They needed a "fire planet," such as Earth, to continue their unfoldment into the ultimate attainment -- realization of the Self within. To persist in the lush atmosphere, genderless, organic bodies were formed through food-offering ceremonies. Later, through a slow process of mutation, the fleshy bodies we know today as human were established as vehicles for reincarnation. As the book progresses, a diminishing of the spiritual forces radiating from the Central Sun of the galaxy is described. As spiritual awareness wanes, the life force of man, kundalini, sleeps and instinctive desire manifests in abundance."

Corrections and contributions are welcome.

Pathma


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Edited by Pathmarajah (September 25, 2013 02:39 PM)

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#1544 - October 24, 2013 12:41 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Modern Ethics

The ethics in all religions is not right and that is why they clash with science and modernity. And we all know who has to give way in the end.

http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-pag...icle5229383.ece

The ethics* of all religions have no place in the 21st century. The universal ethics of today is the Human Rights Charter. This is the world's and our new Hindu navyashastra on aram (or dharma), whether we formally acknowledge it or not. It is already law in India and most of the world, and whether claimed, practised, enforced or not. In India most rights exist only on paper. That's why the social ills and shocking crime occur.

We have to rebuilt our culture around these new parameters.

*ethics - the philosophy of morality; what is right, what is wrong, what is good, what is bad, and it deals with freedoms and responsibilities.

There are a number of these shastras and which are as follows:

Human Rights Charter
http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/

Universal Human Rights Instruments
http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/UniversalHumanRightsInstruments.aspx

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
http://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/ccpr.aspx

International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights
http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CESCR.aspx

Pathma

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#1545 - October 24, 2013 01:08 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Many things are not right about religion


Politico-historical factors notwithstanding, the present crisis is a conflict between “Science and Religion.” Conservatives of all colours and all items and nations have resisted scientific, social changes. Today, the fanatical elements of the Islamic world violently resist social reforms in the cyber age that were confronted by western societies in 19th century. Equality of life and liberty are the new mantra that threatens all old traditions that are based on the exclusiveness of their religious paradise.

But, as we know, now there is no exclusive blood group identity that divides us in terms of gender, caste, race and region or religion. The democratic equality paradigm has undercut the very basis of exclusiveness. The principle of equality, irrespective of gender, caste, class, race, region or religion, is not found in the religious testament of any faith, or ancient religion.

In fact, all religions promise a safe heaven or paradise, liberation or moksha or nirvana but for their own flock. No religion speaks about the inclusive civil rights of all humanity. No world religion speaks of establishing a non-discriminatory social order. There is no fatwa against killing a non-believer. There is no testament against raping and stoning to death a female or Dalit. In fact, all religious preachers practise social discrimination, and have disfranchised the non-believers, women, the poor and the outcast.

Those who think the conflict is between the West and the East or Islamic world often justify terrorist violence due to the hopelessness of “the oppressed minorities” who turn to “violence and terrorism to avenge the majority oppression” But, according to the Concerned Scientists and Philosophers, it is an irrational political reasoning. (The 21st century Manifesto). For poverty and discrimination are not country-community-or religion-specific. In fact, there are no innocent followers of any caste, region or religion that have not violated the human rights of women and the weak. No race, region, religion or, caste, class or creed was or is free from wrongdoings against “other” humans.

In the Hindu belief system, the social status is determined by the Law of Karma. If you are born as a woman, poor, or Dalit, that is divine dispensation based on your karma (wrongdoings) in the previous birth. There is, however, some redemption for those who die drinking the holy water of the Ganga. But there is no constitutional provision to grant equal human rights to women and the poor in any holy book of any world religion.

Although banned under the Constitution, Hindutva votaries still worship satis (widow burned alive) and the neo-conservatives still commit “honour killing.” Raping and killing nuns by Hindu fanatics is symptomatic of the same sickness which drives Islamist jihadis to stone helpless women to death. We must be reminded of the ghastly act of burning alive an Australian Christian missionary, along with his two children, by Hindutva gangsters. But no Hindu saint or religious head cried of curse, or condemned Hindu rightist crimes.

Similarly, those who raped and killed thousands of helpless women, and massacred Bangladesh President Mujibur Rehman and his family were not the oppressed poor minority. The genocide of the majority Muslim Bengalis was committed not by Hindutva men but by the Muslim majority state of the Islamic Republic. Those who issued a fatwa and attacked Taslima Nasreen, author of Lajja (the Shame), were not oppressed Kashmiris.

Mrs. Malalai Kakar, 40, mother of six children, was a high profile first policewoman officer in Kandhar. She was investigating crimes against women and children in the Muslim majority Afghanistan. “We killed Malalai Kakar. She was our target and we successfully eliminated our target,” boasted a Taliban spokesman. In another case, a film director of the Netherlands was killed for making a film on the women’s struggle for equal rights in an African Muslim society.

A multireligious nation, India adopted a secular and democratic Constitution granting inclusive equal rights to all citizens, irrespective of gender, caste, creed, region or religion. But religious conservatives of all colours actively oppose the political theory of separation of state and religion. The Christian world faced this problem in the 18-19th century when the Pope ruled the West. But theological polity cannot survive the challenges of scientific restructuring of society.

Dhirendra Sharma

(The writer belongs to Centre for Science Policy/Concerned Scientists & Philosophers, Dehradun. Email: www.psaindia.org)

http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-pag...icle5229383.ece

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#1546 - November 04, 2013 08:41 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Libido: No to Lacto-veganism, yes to vegetarianism

After 30 years, I no longer support lacto-veganism. It does reduce libido as we are never sure we get all the proteins and vitamins we need. That has been my experience. I support vegetarianism which includes consuming fish and eggs. It took me a long while to make this admission! About 20 years.&#8232;&#8232;

Lacto vegans may risk loss of libido if they do not consume enough zinc and proteins. Without zinc the body struggles to produce testosterone, the key hormone that sparks sexual desire in both men and women. Zinc is primarily in meat, dairy and shellfish. Even worse, common vegetarian foods like whole grains and beans can interfere with the body's ability to absorb zinc.

I'm sure my vegetarianism led to a drop in testosterone levels. It took the fire out of me. That precisely was one of the reasons for me becoming a vegetarian in the first place for I was a violent person then in my 20s and wanted to curb that tendency. It was a smashing success. I stayed out of jail. Smashed the libido too. Wife left me too eventually. Became a Hindu brahmacharini. Now you boys don't do it, I tell you!

&#8232;&#8232;Good sources of zinc include pumpkin seeds and pecans. New research suggests that low levels of protein "which can plague vegetarians if they don't get enough foods like tofu or wheat gluten" boosts a body chemical that sucks up the hormone that puts us in the mood.&#8232;&#8232;

Low levels of protein are linked to high levels of sex-binding globulin, which locks up testosterone so the body can't use it, according to a study by Dr. Christopher Langcope of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. "Once the testosterone is bound, it is not available to the tissues," he said. Older vegetarians, especially men, take note: The effect may be especially pronounced in older men, says Dr. Langcope.&#8232;&#8232;

In addition to beans, tofu and wheat gluten, vegetarians can get protein from "peanut butter, brown rice, any kind of nuts, soy milk, and even oatmeal.

"&#8232;&#8232;The most hard-to-find nutrient for those who go completely vegan (no meat, seafood or dairy products) is vitamin B-12. Found exclusively in animal products because it is produced by microorganisms that live in animals, a deficit in B-12 can cause "tiredness, breathlessness, listlessness, pallor and poor resistance to infection," according to the Vegetarian Society of the United Kingdom.&#8232;&#8232;

Sex drive may or may not be directly related to B-12, but tired, pale, out-of-breath vegetarians should perhaps be concerned about their partner's lack of libido. B-12 is easily available as a dietary supplement.

We shall eat, not blindly following traditional practices, or what some book from the past dictates, but according to the information available today and what our nutrition needs are.

The theory is that malnutrition and decades, even centuries of low protein diet (read lacto-veganism) makes Indians mentally deficient, conservative with an inability to learn (cognitive impairment) and change. We were talking to a wall all along. If we have to consume supplements, then something in deficient in the food culture.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india...ow/24728280.cms

"Indian scientists have finally decoded how long-term protein deficiency, a problem faced not just by malnourished children but also healthy-looking adults, impairs brain functioning. They have shown how protein deficiency reduces the ability of brain cells to process information, leading to learning disabilities, difficulty in memorizing and delayed response."

We cannot change the Indians by reasoning with them. Malnutrition makes them insecure, inability to process new ideas, obstinate to change. The first step in reform is to get the Indians to change their diet, change their food culture, eating habits and table mannerisms.

I have given all the proof these last few months on malnutrition and its dire effects.

Pathma
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Edited by Pathmarajah (November 04, 2013 08:46 AM)

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#1547 - November 13, 2013 03:14 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Cognitive Impairment, Epistemology & Malnourishment



http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india...ow/24728280.cms

I did some research on 'cognitive impairment', a condition that affects malnourished persons among others. Usually we gloss over casually and pay scant attention, often derisively, to such terms. I think it deserves far more attention. Most of us all display "cognitive impairment" when it comes to maths! And other peoples' family problems. This is understandable.

Suppose a person holds a certain belief or claim, and we present him with some new information. It is incumbent upon the person to revise his views in the light of the new information, if it is a fact. That is the rational thing to do. First we establish whether the new information is indeed a fact, knowledge, a justified true belief. If so, the old view has to be immediately abandoned in the light of this new evidence.

Descartes argued that we can raise skepticism (doubts) on almost anything we claim to know, that nothing can be taken as a fact. Therefore we have no knowledge of anything. We don't know anything about the external world. He argued rigorously that he exists, and he thinks, and this is the only fact in the world. "I think, therefore I exist." In everything else a doubt can be raises.

Epistemology is the study of what is knowledge, when is something knowledge, how can we know knowledge, when is a claim, a proposal or a belief true?

When they meet some conditions. If certain necessary and sufficient conditions are met, then we have knowledge. These are:

1. we have verified it is true by way of a reliable method,
2. we are justified in thinking it, and ruled out the possibility it is false, ruled out all skeptical hypotheses.
3. that our certainty of it is not a prejudiced inference from our other prior false beliefs,
5. this certainty we hold to this new information is sensitive to truth, that is, if presented with new contrary evidence we are bound to change our belief,
6. our corollary beliefs about this subject have also been mostly accurate.

When a person is presented with rigorously established evidence as above, he is bound to revise his previously held belief. That is what a rational person does. Cognitive impairment is the inability to do so! It is world-widespread for several reasons; one is illiteracy and the lack of proper education. Another is incredulous disbelief for no reason or religious predisposed to disbelief.

Yet another reason is malnourishment, which prevents persons from processing and understanding new information. Such persons persist with previous beliefs despite new evidence to the contrary being presented. We find it in senior citizens too, which eventually leads to dementia and Alzheimer's. A cognitively impaired population finds it difficult to change, there is resistance, a tendency to retain status quo and orthodoxy, to block out new information, and is argumentative.

*cognition is a group of mental processes that includes attention, memory, producing and understanding language, learning, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making. Cognition usually refers to an information processing. Cognition is a faculty for the processing of information, applying knowledge, and changing preferences. Impairment is the inability to do so adequately.

I think I just described Indian society.

So first we have to provide clean water, and balanced meals, before undertaking any reform. There is nothing more basic than this in a society.

When discussing virtue as the basis of morality, Aristotle was asked if slavery is justified. "Can one think and reason? If not, that one is fit to be a slave," said Aristotle. He equated rationality with virtue. Slavery was accepted in ancient Greece. Slaves reconciled to it as they found themselves dysfunctional in Greek society and so preferred it.

I find it difficult to talk to someone in India. He is unable to comprehend, is argumentative and tells you why it won't work. Societal pressure to conform is a major factor. But that same person when he visits my country, when in a new and relaxed environment, seeing for himself a different and changed society, has some money to spend and carry himself with self esteem, is much more reasonable and amenable.

I think the children should sit on a chair at a table, wear a napkin and eat their midday meals in porcelain with fork and spoon. They should be treated with dignity which helps build their self esteem and self confidence. Isn't this why they are going to school, to learn values and be cultured and refined men and women? They should not be made to wash plates as it would be unhygienic. Rather crockery and cutlery should be washed by an automatic dishwasher where it is rinsed, soaped, washed and sterilised. This should be the culture in every home. In reforming culture we should start with the toilet and kitchen, and with water and food.

Pathma

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#1548 - November 15, 2013 10:38 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Malnutrition

watch from 3.30 to 5.00 min
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCe_5hvwdKM

EDx MIT

"Do you know what the threshold for the BMI is?
STUDENT: 18.5.
PROFESSOR: 18.5.
So 18.5 is under-nourished. And there is a large number of people that comes slightly below who are under-nourished by this standard.
There is about two billion people in the world who are anemic.
That means they don't have enough hemoglobin in there blood.
Not all of anemia is due to poor nutrition, but it's estimated that
maybe half of this is due to iron-deficiency anemia.
So it's a deficiency in one particular micro-nutrient, which is iron.
So that's about one billion people who are anemic due to some deficiency in iron in their diet.
These are deficiency in iron or difficulty in absorbing the iron.

A lot of these anemic people in India, and sadly Indians, combined the fact
that many of them are vegetarian and that their diet is rich in rice, which
is rich in phytates, which is an inhibitant for the absorption of iron.


Which is one reason why the rate of anemia is particularly high in India, is that on the one hand, they get less iron in their diet than other people at a comparable level of calorie intake just because those come less from meat. And on the other hand, they are less good at absorbing them due to the rice."

That is a double whammy for vegans and vegetarians. Being one means deficiency in zinc, iron, Vitamin B 12, anaemic, malnourished, lack of libido and suffer cognitive impairment. Basically a sick person, and who does not know it!

Vegans should switch and become vegetarian which includes fish and eggs, take B 12 supplements, and consume rice no more than 4 times a week!

Pathma

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Edited by Pathmarajah (November 15, 2013 11:38 AM)

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#1551 - March 03, 2014 09:57 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

The unified theory of events and outcomes


Determinism is the view that everything that happens is fixed by what happened before it, and the laws of nature, both of which cannot be changed.

Chaos theory is the view that dynamic systems are highly sensitive to initial conditions - an effect which is popularly referred to as the Butterfly Effect. Small differences in initial conditions yield widely diverging outcomes, rendering long-term prediction impossible.

Entropy is the gradual decline into breakdown, disorder and dissolution.

In this determinate world, due to chaos and entropy, it is impossible to determine the outcome and predict the future. The future is indeterminate!

Pathma

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#1555 - August 06, 2014 11:57 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang

Lowering of testosterone led to development of civilised human behaviour and values and the beginning of ethics and morality

http://www.dumb-out.net/lower-testosterone-led-emergence-modern-man-traits/2603

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#1558 - March 15, 2015 02:13 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Miserliness

Some of you withhold yourself in miserliness, and he who withholds himself in miserliness, withholds against himself,and Allah is need-free, but you are the needy, but if you turn away (others when you could help) He will replace you by some others, then they will not be like you. - Quran 47.38

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#1561 - April 10, 2015 01:35 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Are Prayers Answered?

If god answered prayers, wouldn't we be all be healthy, millionaires, happy and all dreams fulfilled?
But that is not the reality is it? In fact, it is otherwise.
Because that is not the way the world works. God wants to see what you actually do, and he responds accordingly, at his measured pace.

Pathma

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#1562 - April 10, 2015 01:35 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
Pathmarajah Offline
Member

Registered: July 22, 2004
Posts: 375
Loc: Penang
Mind Control - Is there a mind?

You dont know where the mind is located, and you cant see it because it is not made up of particles and does not bounce back light.
But that does not mean it is not there; it is simply a process (like photosynthesis) of our 'post' brain state - what happens in our neural firings is (later) reflected in our mind, like a screen. What it means is we have no control over it. In fact, we have no control over anything. Try it for yourself; pray and wish for something for yourself or others!

Pathma

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#1563 - April 15, 2015 03:54 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
webmaster Offline
Member

Registered: February 07, 2010
Posts: 1030
Loc: KL
Extinct Religions, Ex-gods, Ex-pedestal Gods, Semeratheoi (Todays'gods), Anti-Gods, Polytheos (Gods of the Netherworld)

Several articles here by Dr. Archarya V.V.Raman

https://omnigod.wordpress.com/


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#1564 - May 19, 2015 01:37 PM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
webmaster Offline
Member

Registered: February 07, 2010
Posts: 1030
Loc: KL
Dr. P. Priyadarshi at IITK- History of Ancient India over last 100,000 years

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1l7VsR-dW-c&sns=fb


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Edited by webmaster (May 19, 2015 01:37 PM)

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#1566 - December 25, 2015 04:37 AM Re: Miscellaneous Articles [Re: webmaster]
webmaster Offline
Member

Registered: February 07, 2010
Posts: 1030
Loc: KL

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