Wellness culture is destroying our bodies and the planet

Despite what Instagram would have you believe, our dietary choices are not the leading cause of the climate crisis. By Scarlett Westbrook Over the last few months, I have been inundated with requests from various wellness and ‘healthy eating’ organisations to promote their products or schemes, usually centred around their ‘climate friendliness’. After an endless stream of messages from CEOs trying to get me to help them cash in on the climate guilt felt by many in our generation, I’m here to debunk the myths they are peddling. Message after message tells us that buying ‘climate friendly’ protein shakes or supporting … Continue reading Wellness culture is destroying our bodies and the planet

Wilderness, Solitude, and Creativity: Artist and Philosopher Rockwell Kent’s Century-Old Meditations on Art and Life During Seven Months on a Small Alaskan Island

“These are the times in life — when nothing happens — but in quietness the soul expands.” BY MARIA POPOVA Not often — a handful of times in a lifetime, if you are lucky — you come upon a work of thought and feeling — a book, a painting, a song — that becomes a fountain to which you return again and again, and which returns you to your life refreshed each time. For me, The Little Prince has been one, and Leaves of Grass, and I Put a Spell on You, and Spiegel im Spiegel. Wilderness (public library) by the painter, printmaker, and philosopher Rockwell Kent (June 21, … Continue reading Wilderness, Solitude, and Creativity: Artist and Philosopher Rockwell Kent’s Century-Old Meditations on Art and Life During Seven Months on a Small Alaskan Island

Fringe theories stack

Believe in the Loch Ness monster and you’re more likely to believe the Apollo missions were fake. How do weird beliefs work? by Michael D Gordin, is the Rosengarten Professor of Modern and Contemporary History and the director of the Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts at Princeton University in New Jersey. His books include Einstein in Bohemia (2020) and On the Fringe (2021). Almost nobody holds to just one strange idea. By ‘strange’ here, I mean unconventional, unorthodox, contrary to conventional wisdom. (To attenuate some of the hostile judgment implied in those descriptions, from now on I will use the term ‘fringe’.) … Continue reading Fringe theories stack

Unclutter Your Life by Erasing Your Future

This unsettling practice can usher in a world of relief. By Tina Lear I have too much stuff. That’s the bare truth.  Anxiety and guilt morph into a low-grade, psychic nausea, until I finally can’t take it anymore. Then I pay the best $89 of my life on the minimalist Joshua Becker’s course, “Uncluttered,” and I have my kitchen to show for it. It’s clear and clean and by far the most beautiful room in the house. But soon the momentum disappears, and I don’t know why. So I take a good look at what I’m thinking, and a pattern emerges. My … Continue reading Unclutter Your Life by Erasing Your Future

VACCINES FOR CANCER ARE ALREADY HERE — AND YOU CAN GET THEM

by RONALD C. DESROSIERS One-fifth. Nearly 20 percent of cancers worldwide are caused by a virus. These viruses don’t cause cancer until long after they initially infect a person. Rather, the viruses teach the cells they take over how to escape the natural biological process of cell death. This strategy sets these altered cells on a path for other genetic changes that can cause full-blown cancer years down the road. As a microbiologist and researcher of viruses, I seek to understand how viruses affect living cells and the health of the people who are infected. These particular viruses are distinct and interesting, both for their … Continue reading VACCINES FOR CANCER ARE ALREADY HERE — AND YOU CAN GET THEM

Three maps remind us of the horror of the Vietnam War

America’s war in Southeast Asia is fading fast from memory. These maps offer a horrific reminder. KEY TAKEAWAYS Like most armed conflicts once they are over, the Vietnam War is fading fast from memory.  One map reopens the door to a particularly horrific aspect of the Vietnam War: carpet bombing.  A second map depicts the spraying of various herbicides, and a third depicts U.S. bases named after sweethearts and Nazi strongholds (among other things). by Frank Jacobs Wars transform nations. Then they end, and as their veterans die, they fade from living memory into history. That is now happening to … Continue reading Three maps remind us of the horror of the Vietnam War

The philosopher’s zombie

The infamous thought experiment, flawed as it is, does demonstrate one thing: physics alone can’t explain consciousness Dan Falk is a Canadian science journalist. His books include The Science of Shakespeare (2014) and In Search of Time (2008). He also co-hosts BookLab, a podcast that reviews popular science books. He lives in Toronto. Edited byPam Weintrau In his book Until the End of Time (2020), the physicist Brian Greene sums up the standard physicalist view of reality: ‘Particles and fields. Physical laws and initial conditions. To the depth of reality we have so far plumbed, there is no evidence for anything else.’ This physicalist approach has a … Continue reading The philosopher’s zombie

My Dad Once Told Me the World Was 100 Years Old

His teasing provoked me to understand the origins of time. BY SUBODH PATIL How far does time go back? It’s a simple enough question that a child could have the temerity to ask. Any attempt at a meaningful answer, however, leads us headfirst into the limits of understanding what time even is. At the most solipsistic level, it only goes as far back as our earliest memories. Before that, the starting point of our sentience appears to be shrouded in oblivion, or perhaps a fragmented haze of impressions. At the most objective level, this may not be such an inaccurate … Continue reading My Dad Once Told Me the World Was 100 Years Old

Aging Is Reality

Although I studied Buddhism as a young man, it wasn’t until I reached the later years of my life that I truly understood the Buddha’s first encounters with old age, sickness, and death.  By Lewis Richmond It’s an inescapable truth that we all grow old and die. I’m in my seventies now. (If you decided to click and read this article, you may also be well along in your years.) Even though I started studying Buddhism as a very young man, the profundity and depth of the teachings really began to hit home for me as an older person. I came … Continue reading Aging Is Reality

Taboos: Why are we repulsed yet seduced by the forbidden and unspeakable?

According to Sigmund Freud, our revulsion at taboos is an attempt to suppress a part of us that actually wants to do them. KEY TAKEAWAYS Taboos are those forbidden and repulsive things we call illegal, immoral, or disgusting.  According to Sigmund Freud, our revulsion at taboos is an attempt to suppress a part of us that actually wants to do them.  Freud might actually have been right: Our private Google searches and internet personas reveal a darker side to our psyche.  by Jonny Thomson There are things you will never talk of; perverted, grotesque, and macabre thoughts that stay tightly … Continue reading Taboos: Why are we repulsed yet seduced by the forbidden and unspeakable?