The Russian Plot to Control Your Mindfulness

Posts by the Kremlin-run Facebook page Mindful Being What a faux-spiritual Facebook page run by Kremlin propagandists can teach us about encountering our own biases and emotional reactions. By Bodhipaksa Most people are aware of the Kremlin’s attempts to influence voters in the US and Europe, but the fact that one of the avenues for this influence was mindfulness may come as a surprise. Among Russia’s many fake social media accounts was a Facebook page called “Mindful Being,” which cleverly mixed legitimate spiritual teachings with material intended to make us more receptive to authoritarianism. Russian operatives deciding that mindfulness, a way … Continue reading The Russian Plot to Control Your Mindfulness

Predators, Prey, and Vodka

Surveying muskoxen in the Russian far north. BY JOEL BERGER Wrangel Island carries a certain profoundness, a divine story of a different sort. Life here is postapocalyptic, a kind of rebound. It portends the future. My sponsor is Alexander Gruzdev, a big bear of a man with a nice smile, a throaty Russian accent, a Ph.D. in biology, and the ability to knock back a lot of vodka. Alexander is also the director of the Wrangel Island Reserve. He goes by Sasha, and is not the best communicator. On the occasions when Sasha tries to speak English—which I appreciate—much of … Continue reading Predators, Prey, and Vodka

The revolutionary sex

Detail from a 1926 Soviet poster ‘Emancipated women – Build Socialism!’ Photo by Getty For one shining moment, being a Russian woman meant sexual freedom and radical equality. Never seen before – or since by Paula Erizanu is a freelance writer focusing on ideas, people, the arts, and eastern Europe. Her writing has appeared in CNN, The Guardian, and Dazed, among others. She lives in London. Edited by Sally Davies ‘We don’t have sex in the USSR, and we are categorically against it.’ When a female hotel manager said this on Soviet state television in 1986, the studio audience laughed. The line soon became a catchphrase, … Continue reading The revolutionary sex

EDGAR CAYCE MAY HAVE BEEN RIGHT ABOUT RUSSIA’S ROLE IN PREVENTING WORLD WAR III

by Dylan Charles, Editor Waking Times The U.S. has been attempting to enter Syria for almost five years now, and the chemical weapons pretext has been in play since the invasion of Iraq. We seem to be in a repeat cycle. Some kind of macabre Groundhog Day where no matter how many times we manage to survive the day, we keep waking up to the same twisted scenario. Retired General Wesley Clark told us over a decade ago of the military plan to invade Syria, and now in the Syrian theater, the drive to force Russia into retaliation against the U.S. is deadly persistent. This … Continue reading EDGAR CAYCE MAY HAVE BEEN RIGHT ABOUT RUSSIA’S ROLE IN PREVENTING WORLD WAR III

A MAP OF THE COMING WAR: WHO IS WHO (AND WHERE) IN SYRIA

APRIL 12, 2018    With war likely set to break out in Syria at any moment, a question many Americans are asking is… where is Syria? Geographical challenges aside, it is safe to say that the situation in Syria is extremely fluid, and changing on an almost daily basis, which is why we have shown several strategic and tactical snapshot maps of Syria as of this moment. The first and most useful one, courtesy of Turkey’s Omran Dirasat think tank, shows updated areas of control and influence in Syria by international military forces with reference to the most prominent international military sites in … Continue reading A MAP OF THE COMING WAR: WHO IS WHO (AND WHERE) IN SYRIA

Chernobyl’s abandoned dogs create their own exclusion zone community

Chernobyl’s abandoned dogs create their own exclusion zone community by Lacy Cooke VIEW SLIDESHOW If you ever happen to visit Chernobyl, you might run across one of the roughly 300 stray dogs that reside there. After the 1986 disaster, residents weren’t allowed to bring their pets away with them, and many dogs were left behind. Today, their descendants still roam the area, and while their life isn’t easy, The Guardian reports they are “a playful example of global kindness and cooperation.” Around 300 stray dogs reside in the 2,600 square kilometer – or around 1,004 square mile – exclusion zone at Chernobyl in Ukraine. The Chernobyl Prayer, an oral history of … Continue reading Chernobyl’s abandoned dogs create their own exclusion zone community

The Source of Russia’s Notorious Hatred for Gay People

by Steven Blum A researcher discusses the first-ever large-scale study on Russian homophobia In Russia, the “Gay Lobby” is seen as a social contagion — highly infectious and spreading fast. “Society believes we can multiply,” says Evgeny Osin, a professor at the National Research University in Moscow. This fear, stoked by politicians and kept aflame by the Russian media, has warped the public’s perception of sexual minorities and bolstered support for state policies that drive the community into the shadows. That said, Russia wasn’t always a place where gay people feared for their lives. “In the Middle Ages, travelers from Europe were actually surprised by the … Continue reading The Source of Russia’s Notorious Hatred for Gay People