Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Speedlinking 12/13/06

This morning's image is Cumberland Falls in Kentucky, USA, from Live Science:

~ Exercising May Reduce Lung Cancer Risk. Quitting smoking works even better.
~ Gifts for the fitness buffs on your list -- "Thinking about giving the gift of fitness this year? There are plenty of healthful options at a range of price points."
~ Glycemic index and Glycemic load -- as useful as glycemic index is, glycemic load is a crucial part of the puzzle.
~ Alcohol in moderation may extend life -- as always, the middle way.
~ Exercise Cuts Breast Cancer Risk -- "Postmenopausal women who engage in more vigorous physical activity seem to have a lower risk of breast cancer."
~ Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Affects The Basic Properties Of The Circadian Clock.

~ From David Jon at Zaadz: The Increasing Commidification of Consciousness Itself.
~ Study links errors by doctors to long hours -- "The marathon hours worked by doctors-in-training in U.S. hospitals are leading to an alarming number of fatigue-related medical errors that often kill patients, researchers said on Tuesday."
~ Solitary Drug, Alcohol And Cigarette Use Puts Adolescents At Higher Risk -- as a one-time teen who did these things, I can tell you they are warning signs and you'd better pay attention.
~ Sleep Problems Hamper Recovery From Alcoholism.
~ Students with Mental Illness Face Unique Challenges on Campus -- "The transitions between adolescence and adulthood, living at home and working toward independence, pose extreme challenges for every incoming college student."
~ Magic mushrooms for OCD -- this post has a collection of good links on research of entheogens for therapeutic use.
~ Brain Wave Changes In Adolescence Signal Reorganization Of The Brain.

~ Obama's Magic: "With his rock star visit to New Hampshire, the highflying senator continues to tantalize Democrats with intimations of a White House run -- and a buzz not felt in American politics since JFK."
~ Early Returns: Handicapping '08.
~ The St. Paul Discovery: Body or Soul? "The Vatican says it has found the long-missing sarcophagus of the first-century saint, but that shouldn't be taken as gospel — at least not yet."
~ On Blogging: To be or not to be...anonymous.
~ Holocaust Deniers and Skeptics Gather in Iran. If we were ever going to bomb Iran . . . . Not that I am in favor of killing people or anything, I'm just saying . . . Meanwhile, Iran's leader says Israel 'will be wiped out soon'.
~ Oh, Christmas trees: They're back at Sea-Tac.
~ George Will on The reality of Obama in 2008.

~ How economists measure whether you're happy.
~ The latest idea in fighting global warming -- nuclear war?
~ Squid Power: Propulsion Systems Modeled on Nature.
~ Extreme New Species Discovered by Sea-Life Survey -- Photo Gallery: Surprising Sea Animals Discovered in 2006.
~ Top ten breakthroughs that could help cool the greenhouse.
~ Red Sea Might Save Dead Sea.
~ A Green Chimney.

~ Newest info on Ken Wilber from the I-I pod at Zaadz -- he's out of ICU and doing well.
~ The Integrative Spirituality Community Sends its Support for Author Ken Wilber’s Recovery.
~ From ebuddha: Following up on 2nd Tier question.
~ From Joe at Until: Towards greater clarity in Integral communications.


Anonymous said...

it seems premature to speak of the commodification of consciousness; but i would certainly agree that consciousness has been increasingly objectified--made into a material (epi-)phenomenon. I don't think we've yet figured out how to market and sell this object, but that's the next logical stepp, of course.

william harryman said...

If you look at any issue of Shambhala Sun, Tricycle, or What Is Enlightenment? (three that I subscribe to), you'll see the commidification of consciousness on almost every page. Retreats, seminars, books, classes, and so on all promise higher consciousness for a price. It will only get worse when the pharmaceutical industry decides we are not happy enough, or tolerant enough, or open-hearted enough and finds a way to trigger these states with chemicals.


Anonymous said...

Okay, you've got something of a point there; but then again you're talking about "higher" consciousness. Tradtionally, reaching so-called higher states required the intervention of a teacher and submission to a school or guru. Makes sense, don't you think, that in a capitalist society this would become a monetary transaction. (I've actually noticed that many Americans--myself included on occasion--view inexpensive or "free" products and services with great suspicion or even contempt; as a trainer you're probably aware of how much more closely your clients attend your advice for having to pay for it!).

Whew, anyway my point is more or less: so what? I'm suggesting that commodification in and of itself is not necessarily a negative, but might actually represent an evolutionary advancement in how we understand and confront consciousness (the commodification of depression, social anxiety and stage fright, for example, has led to [chemical] fixes which never before existed).

Maybe soon we'll find that laughter and happiness, when experienced a certain percentage of one's waking hours, significantly increase longevity and physical health; two little blue "happy pills" twice a day will be the inevitable, disturbing but probably life-enhancing consequence.

Kai in NYC

william harryman said...

Okay, good points. I would be unemployed if people were not too lazy to figure things out for themselves -- and yeah, they take it a lot more seriously when they are paying for it. Which all says that we have commodified consciousness (and personal training). As you suggest, that may be a good thing if people take it more seriously.

I think what David Jon was arguing, in part, is that our "natural" state is becoming so divorced from consciousness that we now have to buy it in the marketplace. He's arguing a Marxist approach to consciousness, which in itself is interesting if not fully coherent.

Anyway, I think you're right about the "happy pills." I'll take the ones that make me more patient. :)