Caffeine is the most widely used drug in the world, but most of us don’t really know or care exactly what goes on inside our bodies when we drink our morning cup of coffee. Obviously it help us wake up and focus, but caffeine actually has some much broader much broader, and in some cases, more surprising effects. This Business Insider infographic (high res version here) summarises them all for you, so that you can really appreciate how much your flat white does for you.
For starters, let’s set the record straight on how much caffeine your body can really handle. For most of us that’s around 400 milligrams per day, or five Red Bulls (interesting fact: the amount of caffeine you can drink is actually determined by your genes) but if you’re anything like me, that amount would make you incredibly jittery.
That’s because when caffeine hits our bloodstreams, around one to two hours after being ingested, it increases our blood pressure and tells our adrenal glands to pump out more adrenaline, which makes us irritable and emotionally charged.
On the plus side, it also triggers the release of dopamine and glutamine in the brain, which help boost mood and reduce the risk of depression. It also blocks a molecule called adenosine in the brain, to stop us from feeling sleepy.
In addition to improving focus, studies have shown that caffeine also has the ability to improve people’s memories, although it seems that the effects aren’t so impressive for people who are already hooked on it.
Not mentioned on this infographic is the fact that, for many of us, coffee also makes us poop. This effect is linked to the drink itself, rather than caffeine, but research has shown that there’s a pretty fascinating reason for why our morning cup of coffee sees us running to the bathroom.
The sad part of all of this is that the effects of caffeine do wear off, usually after around five or six hours. Although for many of us, it feels a lot quicker, and we’re usually reaching for our next cup pretty soon after our first.
A team of biochemical researchers in the US has figured out how to give a human volunteer night vision, allowing him to see across a distance of over 50 metres in total darkness for several hours.
The key is a natural, light-sensitive substance called Chlorin e6 (Ce6), which is derived from sea creatures and has been used for many years in cancer treatment research. It’s also been shown to be effective in the treatment of night blindness and improving dim light vision in people with eye disorders, so an independent team of self-described ‘bio-hackers’ in California called Science for the Masses decided to see how else it could be used to improve vision.
The idea came from a patent filed in 2012, claiming that when you apply a mixture of Ce6, insulin, and saline to a person’s eye, the retina will absorb it and increase vision in low light. The patent also mentions that the chemical dimethlysulfoxide (DMSO) can be used in place of the insulin, but the Science for the Masses team thought, why not use both to increase the permeability of the solution?
“Going off that research, we thought this would be something to move ahead with,” the lab’s medical officer, Jeffrey Tibbetts, told Max Plenke at Mic. “There are a fair amount of papers talking about having it injected in models like rats, and it’s been used intravenously since the ’60s as a treatment for different cancers. After doing the research, you have to take the next step.”
Fellow researcher, Gabriel Licina (pictured above), stepped forward to be their human guinea pig. The team explains the procedure over at their website:
“For the application, the subject rested supine and his eyes were flushed with saline to remove any micro-debris or contaminants that might be present. Eyes were pinned open with a small speculum to remove the potential for blinking, which may force excess liquid out before it had a chance to absorb. Ce6 solution was added to the conjunctival sac via micropippette at 3 doses of 50μl into each eye.
After each application, pressure was applied to the canthus to stop liquid from moving from the eye to the nasal region. Each dose was allowed to absorb between reloading the pippette, with the black colour disappearing after only a few seconds.
After application was complete, the speculum was removed and black sclera lenses were placed into each eye to reduce the potential light entering the eye. Black sunglasses were then worn during all but testing, to ensure increased low light conditions and reduce the potential for bright light exposure.”
Licina reported experiencing the effects for “many hours” after application, the team reports.
Licina and four controls were then placed in a dark environment, and Licina waited to feel the effects. After about an hour, he started to make out the objects of shapes in the darkness about 10 metres away. Soon, this distance progressed to 20, and eventually just over 50 metres, with Licina able to recognise and identify symbols and objects, such as numbers, letters, and shapes, moving against differently coloured and patterned backgrounds. Licina and the controls were tested on how many they could identify. And we’re not talking huge objects here, Licina told Mic they were about the size of his hand.
Next, Licina and the controls were taken out into the woods at night and moved into separate locations. Then they were asked to try and spot people standing in random locations 50 metres away. The team reports the results, and they’re pretty phenomenal:
“The Ce6 subject and controls were handed a laser pointer and asked to identify the location of the people in the grove. After testing, the Ce6 subject replaced the sunglasses, which were not removed until sleep. Eyesight in the morning seemed to have returned to normal and as of 20 days, there have been no noticeable effects.
The Ce6 subject consistently recognised symbols that did not seem to be visible to the controls. The Ce6 subject identified the distant figures 100 percent of the time, with the controls showing a 33 percent identification rate.”
The team recognises that a lot more testing needs to be done, but they say that this can be done cheaply, because the substances are inexpensive, and have already been rigorously tested for human safety for other applications.
They told Max Plenke at Mic that the whole idea behind their research group is to pursue the things that major corporations or research institutions wouldn’t bother with, but are too fascinating to ignore. “For us, it comes down to pursuing things that are doable but won’t be pursued by major corporations,” said Tibbetts. “There are rules to be followed and don’t go crazy, but science isn’t a mystical language that only a few elite people can speak.”
Möbius is an extremely rare congenital facial paralysis that is usually bilateral and complete. The paralysis leaves the face expressionless, which makes it difficult for persons with Möbius to express emotions or indicate that they understand a conversation partner’s information. This severely inhibits interaction and rapport–creating a challenge not only for the persons with Möbius but also for their conversation partners who become insecure and nervous.
An international group of researchers centered at Aarhus University’s Interacting Minds Centre has completed a study involving five Danish teenagers with Möbius Syndrome to see whether it is possible to teach persons who lack facial expressivity to use alternative communication strategies.
“Our research shows that the teenagers significantly improved rapport and interaction with their conversation partners without Möbius after just two days’ workshop in compensatory communication strategies. And interestingly, it was not only the teenagers with Möbius who changed their behavior; the non-Möbius interlocutors became much more expressive with both gestures and voices,” says postdoc John Michael from University of Copenhagen’s Center for Subjectivity Research.
John Michael is the lead author of the paper Training in compensatory strategies enhances rapport in interactions involving people with Möbius syndrome, which is published in the journal Frontiers in Endovascular and Interventional Neurology.
Small workshop with large implications
Möbius Syndrome only occurs in 2 to 20 births per million, so it is an extremely rare condition, which is why the researchers only had five Danish teenagers to test their hypothesis on. But their results can nevertheless say something general about people who find social interaction difficult because of disfigurements or paralysis:
“The workshop we conducted for the five teenagers was adapted from one that the English charity organization Changing Faces conducts for people with severe facial burns or disfigurements. That it proved so effective, not only for the five boys with Möbius, but also for their interlocutors, says something important about social interaction,” says John Michael and adds:
“Möbius Syndrome and other conditions that can be socially challenging are often seen as problems which primarily involve the people with the syndrome. But the reactions they get from other people in social situations are equally important, as they can inhibit interaction and rapport. This insight may lead to new forms of therapy and treatment which address other people than just those affected by Möbius, i.e. the ‘normal healthy individuals’ who encounter and interact with people with Möbius. And the same may be true with respect to other cases, such as autism for example.”
Basic research with immediate impact
As Möbius is a rare and understudied syndrome, and the pool of participants small, the researchers behind the present study hope that their results will be replicated and extended by other researchers.
“As always, more studies are needed. We will seek to replicate the findings with new participants, and observe the long term effects of more prolonged training and of different communicative strategies. But these first findings are highly promising, and it is especially satisfying to see that the basic research we are doing has many practical applications, which can make a real difference in some people’s lives,” John Michael concludes.
About the intervention
Five teenagers with Möbius interacted with three naïve participants without Möbius before they participated in the social skills workshop, where they learned compensatory communication strategies for persons lacking facial expressivity. After the workshop, the five teenagers with Möbius interacted with three different naïve participants without Möbius.
The two interactions were recorded on video and other kinds of recordings were made. These were then assessed by neutral observers. The results documented that the workshop had had a highly positive effect on the interaction and rapport in both groups.
Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu Starring: Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, Naomi Watts Certificate: 15 Running time: 119 mins
We said: Michael Keaton plays the one-time star of a Hollywood superhero franchise seeking to redeem himself on the Broadway stage. Keaton, a one-time Batman himself, “gives the performance of his career” in this “hilarious, beautiful, film-defying film”. Read the full review of Birdman.
Director: Ava DuVernay Starring: David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Tom Wilkinson, Alessandro Nivola, Giovanni Ribisi, Tim Roth Certificate: 12A Running time: 128 mins
We said: British actor David Oyelowo is “electrifying” as Martin Luther King in Ava DuVernay’s “scorching, full-bodied, flat-out great film” about the events that took place in Selma, Alabama, as members of the civil rights movement fought for the right for black Americans to vote. Read the full review of Selma.
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Katherine Waterston, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio Del Toro, Jena Malone, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short Certificate: 15 Running time: 149 mins
We said: Paul Thomas Anderson’s surreally funny Thomas Pynchon adaptation, which stars a “quietly dazzling” Joaquin Phoenix as a dishevelled LA private eye, is like no noir you’ve ever seen. Read the full review of Inherent Vice.
Director: Bennett Miller Starring: Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Sienna Miller, Anthony Michael Hall, Vanessa Redgrave Certificate: 15 Running time: 134 mins
We said: The true story of Olympic wrestler brothers Dave and Mark Schultz, and their fatal dealings with eccentric millionaire John Eleuthère du Pont (played by a near-unrecognisable Steve Carell), becomes a “smoke-black parable of modern America”, with a screenplay as tense and tuned as piano strings. Read the full review of Foxcatcher.
Director: Damien Chazelle Starring: Miles Teller, JK Simmons, Melissa Benoist, Paul Reiser Certificate: 15 Running time: 106 mins
We said: Superb performances from Miles Teller as a young jazz drummer and JK Simmons as his martinet of a mentor are at the heart of this “dazzling, exhilarating drama”. Read the full review of Whiplash.
Director: Peter Strickland Starring: Sidse Babett Knudsen, Monica Swinn, Chiara D’Anna, Eugenia Caruso, Kata Bartsch, Fatma Mohamed, Eszter Tompa, Zita Kraszkó Certificate: 18 Running time: 104 mins
We said: Two women who live in a grand old house in the middle of a moss-draped forest play out an elaborate sex game in this “uniquely sexy and strange film, built on two tremendous central performances and a bone-deep understanding of cinema’s magic and mechanisms.”Read the full review of The Duke of Burgundy.
Director: Isao Takahata Starring: Aki Asakura, Yukiji Asaoka, Takeo Chii, Isa Hashizume, Hikaru Ijûin, Takaya Kamikawa Certificate: U Running time: 137 mins
We said: Studio Ghibli’s lovingly crafted film, based on a 10th-century Japanese legend about a reluctant princess trying to get back to the forests and hillsides of her childhood, is a work of “supreme artistry”, and a fitting swansong for director Isao Takahata. Read the full review of The Tale of Princess Kaguya.
Director: George Miller Starring: Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult Certificate: 15 Running time: 120 mins
We said: George Miller’s return to the apocalyptic world of Mad Max is “nothing less than a Krakatoan eruption of craziness”; Tom Hardy is “totally commanding” stepping into Mel Gibson’s shoes, and Charlize Theron is “superb” as the film’s real alpha male, the rogue soldier Imperator Furiosa. Read the full review of Mad Max: Fury Road.
Director: Pete Docter, Ronaldo Del Carmen Starring: Amy Poehler, Mindy Kaling, Diane Lane, Bill Hader, Phyllis Smith (voices) Certificate: PG Running time: 102 mins
We said: Pixar’s “searingly beautiful” new film is set inside the head of an 11-year-old girl, with Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Fear and Anger jostling for position. “The first tear was rolling down my cheek within 30 seconds,” wrote Robbie Collin. Read the full review of Inside Out.
Director: Alex Ross Perry Starring: Jason Schwartzman, Elisabeth Moss, Jonathan Pryce, Krysten Ritter, Joséphine de La Baume, Jess Weixler Certificate: 15 Running time: 109 mins
We said: Alex Ross Perry’s wince-inducing black comedy about two repellent literary blowhards – a young misanthropic egomaniac (Jason Schwartzman) and a subtle, Philip Roth-like grotesque (Jonathan Pryce) – marks the arrival of a major new directorial talent. Read the full review of Listen Up Philip.
Director: John Maclean Starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Michael Fassbender, Ben Mendelsohn, Caren Pistorius Cerificate: 15 Running time: 84 mins
We said: There’s everything here from John Ford mythmaking to Coen brothers mischief-making, plus the sinewy sparseness of Sergio Leone – and even a little of the pride-puncturing slapstick the genre has occasionally attracted in films like Laurel and Hardy’s Way Out West and Mel Brooks’ Blazing Saddles. Read the full review of Slow West.
Director: Tomm Moore Starring: David Rawle, Brendan Gleeson, Lisa Hannigan, Fionnula Flanagan, Lucy O’Connell Certificate: U Running time: 93 mins
We said: Though it’s preoccupied with loss, Song of the Sea is a film that can barely stop itself from giving, and every scene shines with imaginative flourishes that could only possible in two-dimensional, hand-drawn animation. It’s alive to the world in a way that challenges, and sometimes even defies, adult understanding. The only way to describe it is childlike. See it and feel four years old again. Read the full review of Song of the Sea.
Director: Alice Rohrwacher Starring: Maria Alexandra Lungu, Sam Louwyck, Alba Rohrwacher, Sabine Timoteo, Monica Bellucci Certificate: 15 Running time: 110 mins
We said: Alice Rohrwacher, the 31-year-old Italian film-maker, has conjured up a mesmerising coming-of-age tale: small and sweet in every good way, but alive with a power that seems to surge up from deep beneath its sun-roughened landscape. Read the full review of The Wonders.
Director: Aleksei German Starring: Leonid Yarmolnik, Yuriy Tsurilo, Natalya Moteva, Aleksandr Chutko, Evgeniy Gerchakov Certificate: 18 Running time: 177 mins
We said: An astronaut visits a mirror planet to Earth, stuck in an eternal Dark Ages, and witnesses scenes of grotesque barbarity. “Imagine Monty Python and the Holy Grail directed by Bruegel and you’re some way towards grasping director Aleksei German’s vision”, says Robbie Collin.Read the full review of Hard to be a God.
Director: Andrew Haigh Starring: Charlotte Rampling, Tom Courtenay, Geraldine James, Dolly Wells Certificate: 15 Running time: 93 mins
We said: A couple (Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay) struggles to cope when the husband learns that the perfectly preserved body of his ex-girlfriend has been discovered, 50 years after she slipped into an Alpine crevasse. Rampling “rarely been better” than she is in this “shattering, shivery marital drama”. Read the full review of 45 Years.
Director: Robert Zemeckis Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ben Kingsley, Charlotte Le Bon, James Badge Dale Certificate: PG Running time: 123 mins
We said: Back to the Future director Robert Zemeckis glimmeringly recreates Frenchman Philippe Petit’s tightrope walk between the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center, previously told in the documentary Man on Wire. Joseph Gordon-Levitt makes a thoroughly charming lead, despite his “prononced Franch acksong”, and once we get to the main event, “the camerawork is subtle and meticulous, the 3D head-spinningly well-applied.” Read the full review of The Walk.
Director: Justin Kurzel Starring: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Sean Harris, David Thewlis, Paddy Considine, Jack Reynor, Elizabeth Debicki Certificate: 15 Running time: 113 mins
We said: This is already “one of the great Shakespearean movies,” says Robbie Collin, “built around a pair of cosmically powerful performances from Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard.” The text is pared back and key scenes have been ingeniously re-interpreted. “Everything here is so perfectly in tune with itself that you might expect the film to feel a little too neatly self-contained and vacuum-packed, like Game of Thrones with an arts degree. In fact it’s the opposite: raw, visceral and contagious.” Read the full review of Macbeth.
Director: Sam Mendes Starring: Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Monica Bellucci, Andrew Scott, Dave Bautista, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear Certificate: 12A Running time:148 mins
We said: The 24th Bond film’s Day of the Dead-themed opening is “a swaggering show of confidence from returning director Sam Mendes,” writes Robbie Collin. “The film’s colour palette is so full of mouth-watering chocolates, coffees and creams that when the story moves to Rome, the city looks like a $300-million-dollar, fascist tiramisu.” SPECTRE is relentlessly modern, yet “writers John Logan, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and Jez Butterworth rub sly references to the Bond canon, and craft moments of pure flamboyance that belong there: a secret base inside a crater, a spot-lit meteor as an interior design feature, a wrestling match in a pilotless helicopter, two leonine sports cars roaring through the Roman night.” Read the full review of SPECTRE.
Director: Sean Baker Starring: Kitana Kiki Rodriguez, Mya Taylor, Karren Karagulian, Mickey O’Hagan, James Ransone Certificate: 15 Running time: 86 mins
We said: Shot entirely on an iPhone, this “heart-spinning” movie about two transgender prostitutes on a rampage of revenge on Christmas Eve is more than just a novelty. “In spite of its explicit sex and livid orange skies, Tangerine is, at heart, a proper Christmas movie about family and friendship,” says Robbie Collin, “perhaps the best since Elf in 2003, in fact, although you probably wouldn’t bring the kids.” Read the full review of Tangerine.
Without a doubt, transformative media has played a huge role in the awakening process. If you’re going to watch a movie, it might as well be one that contributes to your awakening and expansion.
Here is a list of all the movies we believe can assist one with the evolution of consciousness. If you know of any similar ones you think we might like, please, post links to them in the comments below.
We did the hard work for you, and organized this list in terms of transformative potential. Here are the 200 best movies for the evolution of consciousness:
One of the most important activities that keeps us healthy throughout our lives is sleeping. Needless to say that sleeping is as important as eating and when one gets deprived of it, it can cause fatal health issues.
One study shows that every third person is sleeping naked, they are intimate with a partner, and it promotes a sense of happiness, lowers blood pressure, strengthens the immune system and reduces feelings of anxiety. To sleep without any clothes on, gives a feeling of absolute freedom. Nothing tightens, nothing scratch or wraps around the body during the night. It is also a great recipe for increasing sexual desire because when we are naked, we just feel sexier. It is very sexy touching with a partner, skin to skin. It is so much nicer than the touch “pyjamas on pyjamas.”
According to an international study of American National Foundation for sleeping, every third person is sleeping naked, and that is why their love lives are happier than those who sleep in pajamas. They are intimate with a partner, and familiarity relaxes and promotes a feeling of happiness. This results in lowering blood pressure, strengthens the immune system and reduces feelings of anxiety. Besides the quality of love and of course sexual life, sleep with nothing on improves the quality of sleep, according to Men’s Fitness.
The body temperature is lower, which contributes to a deeper sleep. The genitals would be grateful if you do not hide in pyjamas. Experts believe that sleeping naked reduces the chance of bacterial growth because they love moisture and heat. The vagina will be less moist and less prone to infections and testicles cooler which keep sperm health.
Your skin will be grateful because this is a unique opportunity to breathe, which reduces the chance of getting skin diseases. In fact, throughout the day the skin is covered by clothing and footwear under which it often sweating and chemicals from the detergent or fabric softener may enter through the pores.
One more detail that is important, if you do not sleep in pajamas, you will economize on household budgets. You will not need to buy, wash or iron. If you are cold at night, you can cover with another blanket, and the body shall continue to enjoy the freedom.
What Are The Benefits Of Sleeping Naked?
If you are not a naked sleeper, the idea of laying naked in the bed may sound not too comforting but when you actually get used to it, it is. Moreover, it is not just about comfort in the bed but also because you will have to wash less clothes and you might as well save some bucks on pajamas as well. Moreover, it also frees you from tight underwear and bra as well, which obviously makes you more relaxed and happier.
Most of the people who wear clothes and sleep must have faced a situation in the bed when their clothes get stuck with something, or their t-shirts gets twisted and presses the belly so hard and you wake up with a bad dream. Thus, when you are sleeping naked, you are free from such small distractions and can result in deeper and better sleep.
Improves Skin Quality
If you sleep naked, at least once in a day, for the better, your body will get to breathe fresh air. More importantly, your private parts will also get aired and obviously, that is a great thing. Your private parts,armpits, and feet are generally restricted all day and are often covered by multiple layers, even in the summer time. Give those parts a chance to air out and breathe. This can lower the risk of skin diseases, like athlete’s foot, that result from wet, restricted skin.
Helps Regulate Cortisol
When you sleep naked, it helps keep your body temperature at the optimal ranges so your body can better create cortisol. Therefore, if you sleep overheated, your cortisol levels tend to stay high even after you wake up. This can lead to increased anxiety, cravings for bad food, weight gain, and more terrible things. Thus, sleeping naked can properly produce and regulate cortisol.
Balances Melatonin and Growth Hormone
Sleeping naked can keep your sleeping environment below 70 degrees (F) every night and help your body regulate its melatonin and growth hormone levels. These chemicals help prevent aging and are essential to good health.
Both for women and men, the stomach is the most critical part of the body that shows the first signs of obesity.
Although the most common causes of obesity are poor diet and sedentary lifestyle, or insufficient movement, there are other somewhat overlooked reasons why your belly may be growing, even though you are eating healthy. Here are some of them:
While in some women the extra pounds get deposited in the buttocks and thighs, for some the undesirable sediments are collected just in the area of the waist. This is due to genetics. The body type is inherited from the parents and nearby relatives, and thus the propensity for obesity in certain parts of the body.
Sleep is very important for normal operation of the organism. Insufficient sleep causes reduced secretion of the hormone leptin in the body, and the bigger and rising secretion of ghrelin – the hormone that stimulates hunger. Insufficient sleep sends signals to the brain that increase the desire for food, and the body begins to collect supplies in the form of fat.
Some drugs may be the cause of obesity without being aware of it. These are the medications used for diabetes, migraine, high blood pressure, depression, steroids and hormonal contraceptive pills.
If you use some of the aforementioned drugs and notice a sharp increase in weight in a short period of time, then seek advice from your doctor.
“Looking for consciousness in the brain is like looking in the radio for the announcer.” – Nassim Haramein, director of research for the Resonance Project
It’s been more than one hundred years since Max Planck, the theoretical physicist who originated quantum theory, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physics, said that he regards “consciousness as fundamental,” that he regards “matter as a derivative from consciousness,” and that “everything we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”
He is basically saying that the immaterial ‘substance’ of consciousness is directly intertwined with what we perceive to be our physical material world in some sort of way, shape or form, that consciousness is required for matter to be, that it becomes after consciousness….and he’s not the only physicist to believe that.
“It was not possible to formulate the laws of quantum mechanics in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.” – Eugene Wigner, theoretical physicist and mathematician. He received a share of the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963
Scientists have been urging the mainstream scientific community, which today is littered with scientific fraud and industry influence as well as invention secrecy, to open up to a broader view regarding the true nature of our reality.
“The day science begins to study non-physical phenomena, it will make more progress in one decade that in all of the previous centuries of its existence.” – Nikola Tesla
Not long ago, a group of internationally recognized scientists came together to stress this fact and how it’s overlooked by the mainstream scientific community. It’s ‘post-material” science, an area of study dealing with the ‘non-physical realm, and it’s challenging the modern scientific worldview of materialism that’s dominated mainstream science. The idea that matter is not the reality is finally starting to gain some merrit. The summary of this report presented at the International Summit On Post-Materialist Science can be found HERE.
“The modern scientific worldview is predominantly predicated on assumptions that are closely associated with classical physics. Materialism—the idea that matter is the only reality—is one of these assumptions. A related assumption is reductionism, the notion that complex things can be understood by reducing them to the interactions of their parts, or to simpler or more fundamental things such as tiny material particles.” –Manifesto for a Post-Materialist Science
MIT’s Max Tegmark,a theoretical physicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, is one of the latest to attempt explaining why he believes consciousness is a state of matter. He believes that consciousness arises out of a certain set of mathematical conditions, and that there are varying degrees of consciousness – just as certain conditions are required to create varying states of vapor, water, and ice. As PBS emphasized, “understanding how consciousness functions as a separate state of matter could help us come to a more thorough understanding of why we perceive the world the way we do.” (source)
Tegmark describes this as “perceptronium,” which he defines as the most general substance that feels subjectively self-aware and this substance should not only be able to store information, but do it in a way that form a unified, indivisible, whole.
“The problem is why we perceive the universe as the semi-classical, three dimensional world that is so familiar. When we look at a glass of iced water, we perceive the liquid and the solid ice cubes as independent things even though they are intimately linked as part of the same system. How does this happen? Out of all possible outcomes, we do we perceive this solution?” – Tegmark (source)
This new way of thinking about consciousness has been spreading throughout the physics community at an exponential rate within the past few years. Considering consciousness as an actual state of matter would be huge, considering the fact that modern day definitions of matter require a substance to have mass, which consciousness does not have. What it does have, however, is some sort of effect on our physical material world, and the extent of this effect and how far it goes is the next step for science.
The quantum double slit experiment is a very popular experiment used to examine how consciousness and our physical material world are intertwined. It is a great example that documents how factors associated with consciousness and our physical material world are connected in some way.
One potential revelation of this experience is that “the observer creates the reality.” A paper published in the peer-reviewed journal Physics Essays by Dean Radin, PhD, explains how this experiment has been used multiple times to explore the role of consciousness in shaping the nature of physical reality.
The study found that factors associated with consciousness “significantly” correlated in predicted ways with perturbations in the double slit interference pattern. (source)
“Observation not only disturbs what has to be measured, they produce it. We compel the electron to assume a definite position. We ourselves produce the results of the measurement.”(source)
For a physicist to brush off the fact that understanding consciousness is necessary for the advancement and understanding of the nature of our reality is not as common as it used to be but, despite the empirical success of quantum theory, even the suggesting that it could be true as a description of our reality is greeted with harsh cynicism, incomprehension and even anger.
“A fundamental conclusion of the new physics also acknowledges that the observer creates the reality. As observers, we are personally involved with the creation of our own reality. Physicists are being forced to admit that the universe is a “mental” construction. Pioneering physicist Sir James Jeans wrote: “The stream of knowledge is heading toward a non-mechanical reality; the universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine. Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter, we ought rather hail it as the creator and governor of the realm of matter. Get over it, and accept the inarguable conclusion. The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.” – R.C. Henry, Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University , “The Mental Universe” ; Nature 436:29,2005) (source)
As you may or may not know, our slogan over here at Collective Evolution is “Be Change”, this is somewhat a spin off from the famous quote by Gandhi “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Within the CE team, we all strive to practice what we preach, and we try to do things differently by living our life in accordance to what we believe is in alignment with ourselves and the environment both physically and mentally. Whether it’s taking a step back in an argument and taking a deep breath before responding, meditating or journaling daily, or making an effort to consume less crap, we strive to incorporate what we believe will change the world into our daily lives. Below are 5 ways you can BE THE CHANGE you would like to see in the world.
1. Be Conscious Of What You Are Consuming & Vote With Your Dollars
Before making any purchases, ask yourself the following questions: are you aware of the ingredients in the products you are buying? Do you know where these items are coming from and what’s in them? Are they produced in a way that is harmonious with the environment? Is this meat I am buying come from a factory-farmed animal? By being aware of what you are purchasing you are directly affecting big corporations -similar to the way large groups of people get together to boycott companies. By choosing products that are produced in a more ethical way, you are directly telling the large unethical companies that you are not interested in their product. If many people do this, it forces the company to either change their ways, or go bankrupt.
“Every time you spend money, you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want.” – Anna Lappé
If you don’t like food being genetically modified and sprayed with pesticides, switch to organic. If you don’t like chemical additives being added to your personal care products and foods, start to make your own. If you are upset with the devastation of the rainforest and environment, consider switching to a diet consisting of less meat, or a plant-based diet. The list goes on.
2. Limit The Amount Of Waste You Are Producing
Take a look at how much you are consuming on a regular basis. Are you someone who always has to have the latest gadget, the newest shoes, and the most fashionable accessories? A good thing to ask yourself is, do you really need these products? Will having them impact your life in a positive way? Just be more conscious of what you are doing. If you already have a mountain of clothes, try organizing a clothing swapwith some friends. Use your gadgets until they actually need to be replaced rather than when the latest comes out, 6 months later.
In terms of actual garbage, try and limit this as well. Be sure to recycle and compost what you can. If your city doesn’t have compost and recycle pick up, it may be a little effort on your part to see this through. Pick products with less or no packaging by buying in bulk, or reusing glass containers. Don’t use the plastic bags for your produce, and be sure to bring reusable bags when you shop. There is a lot you can do to minimize the amount of waste you are producing. For more tips, check this out, She Hasn’t Produced Any Trash In Two Years. This Is What Her Life Is Like.
3. Be Who You Are & Do What Makes You Happy
“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” -Howard Thurman
BE YOURSELF. I can’t stress this enough. Be your authentic self and don’t worry about what other people are going to think of you. At the end of the day if someone doesn’t like something about you, that’s okay! It’s their opinion, not yours. This will not only make you feel better over time, but it will encourage others to do the same as well. Find out what makes you happy and do that. Do whatever it is that makes you come alive and puts a smile on your face. Don’t waste time doing things that don’t give you any real benefit. Put yourself first, and do things for you. Make some time every day for yourself: journal, meditate, take a walk, whatever you want, just do it for you.
4. Change Your Perception, Change The World
Try and see the world in a new light. It is important to be aware of what is happening, but try not to get wrapped up in the fear and/or feeling of despair. Try to see that a lot of what is happening right now on the planet can serve as a wake-up call to humanity. Maybe if these events weren’t taking place, we would never realize that there is something that desperately needs to change. Have a look at some of the positive things that have happened over the past few years, there are some amazing changes, we just have to take a look around.
5. Spread The Word & Believe That You Can Make A Difference
Talk to people about what is going on in the world, and your effort to make a change. Lead by example. Just because others have not yet made any drastic changes in their lives does not mean you can’t. People will see what you are doing differently and ask you questions. This is a great opportunity to explain to people why you are making different choices and why you feel it is important. Consider joining community events that are geared towards raising awareness about various global issues.
Believe in yourself, realize that you do make a difference and that you are here for a reason. Own that in everything you do. Be the best you can be, take care of yourself, and take care of our planet. Together, we can create the type of world we want to live in!
When the masculine and the feminine are in balance, there is fluidity, relationship, a flow of energy, unity, totality. This fluidity and balance is perhaps best illustrated by the Taoist image of the indissoluble relationship and complementarity of Yin and Yang. In the broadest terms, the feminine is a containing pattern of energy: receptive, connecting, holding things in relationship to each other; the masculine is an expanding pattern of energy: seeking extension, expansion towards what is beyond. More specifically, the feminine reflects the instinctual matrix and the feeling (heart) values of consciousness; the masculine reflects the questing, goal-defining, ordering, discriminating qualities of consciousness, generally associated with mind or intellect. For millennia women have lived closer to the first pattern; men to the second. But now, there is a deep impulse to balance these within ourselves and in our culture. There is an urgent need to temper the present over-emphasis on the masculine value with a conscious effort to integrate the feminine one.
In the ancient world the feminine principle in the image of the goddess stood for relationship – the hidden connection of all things to each other. Secondly, it stood for justice, wisdom and compassion. Thirdly, and most importantly, it was identified with the unseen dimension beyond the known world – a dimension that may be imagined as a matrix connecting invisible spirit with visible nature. The word used then to name this matrix was goddess; later it was soul. The feminine principle offered an image of the oneness, sacredness and inviolability of all life; the phenomenal world (nature, matter, body) was regarded as sacred because it was a theopany or manifestation of invisible spirit.
The greatest flaw in patriarchal civilisation has been the over-emphasis on the masculine archetype (identified with spirit) and the devaluation of the feminine one (identified with nature). This has been reflected in the fact that the god-head has no feminine dimension, in the consistent neglect of feeling values and in the misogyny responsible for the repression and suffering of women. The history of the last 4000 years has been forged by men, determined by male perspectives and directed towards goals defined by men – principally the goals of conquest and control. (this is no sense intended as a criticism; in the context of prevailing belief systems and general level of consciousness, things could not have been different).
However, religion and science – all our cultural ideas and patterns of behaviour – have developed from this unbalanced foundation. Throughout this time, everything designated as “feminine” (nature, body, woman) was devalued and repressed, including the rich diversity of the Pagan legacy of the ancient world. In the domain of religion, heretics were eliminated; diverse ways of relating directly to the transcendent were lost. Naturally, this has created a deep imbalance in the culture and in the human psyche. It has led finally to the tyrannies of this century where the lives of some 200 million people have been sacrificed to totalitarian regimes. We can see the brutal legacy of this imbalance in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Russia and now Kosovo. But we can also see it in the ethos that dominates Western culture. The modern tyrant is the extreme reflection of a deeply-rooted pathology derived from a long-standing cultural imbalance between the masculine and feminine archetypes and, at the human level, between men and women. I would like to read you this extract from a recent article:
“This is a world of monstrous tyranny. Everywhere there are governments which by design or neglect are starving people, wrecking their livelihoods, breaking up their families. Everywhere there is the oppression of women, of other races, of ways of life which are dear to people. Property is confiscated, villages are set on fire, disease and malnutrition left to rage unchecked. And what all these victims, tens of millions of them, have in common – what brings their suffering to the forefront of my indignation – is this: they did not ask for this; they cannot avoid this; there is nothing they can do to change this; they have no choice.” (Matthew Parris, The Times, London 6/9/98)
Where there is no relationship and balance between the masculine and feminine principles, the masculine principle becomes pathologically exaggerated, inflated; the feminine pathologically diminished, inarticulate, ineffective. The symptoms of a pathological masculine are rigidity, dogmatic inflexibility, omnipotence, and an obsession with or addiction to power and control. There will be a clear definition of goals but no receptivity to ideas and values that conflict with these goals. The horizon of the human imagination will be restricted by an overt or subtle censorship. We can see this pathology reflected today in the ruthless values that govern the media, politics, and the technological drive of the modern world. We can see the predatory impulse to acquire or to conquer new territory in the drive for global control of world markets, in the ideology of growth, in new technologies such as the genetic modification of food. We see exaggerated competitiveness – the drive to go further, grow faster, achieve more, acquire more, elevated to the status of a cult. There is contempt for the feeling values grounded in the experience of relationship with others and with the environment. There is a predatory and compulsive sexuality in both men and women who increasingly lose the capacity for relationship. There is continuous expansion in a linear sense but no expansion in depth, in insight. The pressure of things to do constantly accelerates.
What is the result? Exhaustion, anxiety, depression, illness which afflict more and more people. There is no time or place for human relationships. Above all, there is no time for relationship with the dimension of spirit. The water of life no longer flows. Men and women and, above all, children, become the victims of this harsh, competitive, uncaring ethos: women, in their disorientation, and because the feminine value has no clear definition or recognition in our culture, are drawn to copy the pathological image of the masculine which itself incorporates fear of the feminine.
Because to a large extent, this whole situation arises unconsciously, not much can be done about it until catastrophe intervenes. Reflecting on this, I remembered the following story:
Once, not long ago, there was a great drought in a province of China. The situation was catastrophic. The Catholics made processions, the Protestants made prayers, and the Chinese burned joss-sticks and shot off guns to frighten away the demons of the drought; but to no avail. Finally the people said: “We will fetch the rain-maker.” And from another province a dried up old man appeared. The only thing he asked for was a quiet little house somewhere, and there he locked himself in for three days. On the fourth day the clouds gathered and there was a great snow-storm at the time of year when no snow was expected – an unusual amount – and the town was filled with rumours about the wonderful rain-maker. Asked what he had been doing during the three days that had caused the snow to fall on the fourth he said: “I come from another country where things are in order. Here they are out of order; they are not as they should be by the ordinance of heaven. Therefore the whole country is not in Tao, and I also am not in the natural order of things because I am in a disordered country. So I had to wait three days until I was back in Tao and then naturally, the rain came.”
The rain-maker did not do anything. He waited until he was in balance. Then, his quality of being rectified the state of imbalance that existed around him. Perhaps we need to become rain-makers…
I feel we are living in a time of kairos – a mythic time of choice – a time of stupendous scientific discoveries which are enlarging our vision of the universe, shattering the vessel of our old concepts about the nature of reality. Yet the delicate organism of life on our planet and the survival of our species are threatened as never before by technologies driven by an ethos of the conquest and control of nature, technologies which are applied with an utter disregard of the perils of our interference with the complex web of relationships upon which the life of our planet depends. The choice is between clinging to an outworn and unbalanced ethos and maturing beyond it towards a more responsible and sensitive capacity for relationship. If we are unable to develop this empathic capacity to relate, we will surely destroy ourselves and the environment that sustains our life.
So how could we help to redress the balance between the masculine and feminine in ourselves and in our culture? First of all, where are we, as individuals out of balance? Where are we driven by the unbalanced cultural ethos of achieving power and control, ignoring our feelings of depression, anxiety or symptoms of the body’s distress? Are we allowing ourselves enough time for reflection, for relationships, for connection with a deeper dimension of reality? The priority as I see it is to make the fact of this pathology a matter of public discussion. Shift the emphasis from achieving power to achieving balance. Secondly, here are some suggestions for strengthening the feminine principle in our society.
Free the Imagination from the stranglehold exercised by a controlling minority which excludes the non-rational from inclusion in our understanding of life.
Formulate a new image of spirit as the totality of all that is – both seen and unseen. Recover the lost and devalued feminine aspects of spirit: restore nature, matter and the physical body (including sexuality) to the realm of the sacred.
Imagine the Soul as a cosmic internet. We belong to an immense field or matrix of relationships. We could imagine the soul in this new way as something we belong to and can develop a relationship with.
Religion – Relinquish the dogmatic formulations of the past: Monotheism as Mytheism. (Ravi Ravindra) Recognise the negative effects of deeply rooted beliefs – such as the belief in original sin – on our interpretation of life and its meaning. Welcome the idea of direct individual experience of the sacred and the numinous.
Science – Integrate the principle of empathic relationship with what is studied in scientific teaching and practice. In education give children an empathic understanding of their own bodies and of nature rather than the image of the body and the universe as a machine. Help them to become aware of their environment as a great chain of relationships in which their lives are embedded. Nourish their sense of wonder.
The psyche: develop a greater insight into predatory and psychopathic patterns of behaviour. Learn to recognise and transform patterns of imbalance. Heal the split between mind and soul. Recognise that feeling is a valid mode of perceiving reality and must be integrated with thinking. The main problem in our society is emotional immaturity.
Politics: develop a forum beyond national and international politics where the true problems of the planet can be articulated and addressed. Recognise grandiosity, standardisation, the drive for control, the proliferation of bureaucracy as symptoms of the pathology of an inflated and unrelated masculine principle.
Medicine: integrate alternative (complementary) methods of healing with orthodox ones as a deliberate policy. Focus on preventive medicine. The modern GP has no time for an empathic relationship with his or her patient. The pressure of numbers is simply too great. However, in some surgeries and hospitals alternative practises are being integrated with orthodox ones. This integration could be expanded.
Agriculture: Focus on increasing the production of organic food. Removal of pesticides, antibiotics and toxins from our food and water.
Care of Children: A much higher level of prenatal care. Compared with the rest of Europe, we are way behind (Sweden is the most advanced). Attention to quality of children’s’ diet and to nourishing the imagination as well as the intellect.
Educate Women to be aware of their own specific value and the importance of their contribution to the culture. Articulating feeling values without fear or shame. The vital importance of choosing partners with greater care; Value and prepare for the responsibility of motherhood.
Educate Adolescents in awareness of the responsibilities of relationships and of the parent towards the child. Teach them the psychology of the child; its dependency; its sensitivity, its potential for emotional growth. Teach them about the complexities of neuroscience so they understand how their emotions affect their bodies and vice-versa. Ask them to invent ways of caring for the environment.
Control bulling by a deliberate stated policy of making schools a sanctuary. Children could help to make their own schools sanctuaries. Meditation in schools from the beginning – positive effects on capacity to learn and emotional balance. (Maharishi School in Skelmersdale – report The Sunday Times 19/9/98).
Teaching Methods: integrate right-hemispheric consciousness with the linear consciousness of the left hemisphere – opening to the creative power of the image – poetry, art, drama and music (no exams for these). Balance in the curriculum between developing the capacity for logical thought and creative imagining and participation. This poem by a 12 year old boy at school in Southampton shows how a teacher can provide the environment in which a child can dare to express his true feelings:
I hear my inner voice talking to me,
Opening the part of me that I thought was lost.
In this world of cruelty and fear little lights are burning.
Everyone has a flame inside their hearts,
If only they had the courage to find it.
The light can trickle out through a hole in your mind.
When the inside is out
You are transformed and revealed.
There is no need to be afraid,
But be curious
As you will probably never know
where the force is coming from. – Daniel Webster
Jonathan Schell wrote the following words in his book, The Fate of the Earth, “Because everything we do and everything we are is in jeopardy, every person is the right person to act and every moment is the right moment to begin.” Each of us is called to focus on rebalancing the masculine and feminine in ourselves and in our culture. This could effect a profound alchemy in our lives. Women and men could both participate in a process of transformation which could bring into being a new cultural focus whose emphasis is no longer on power and control but on relationship, balance and connectedness. The phrase “the conquest of nature” could be replaced by the awareness that humanity and nature participate in a deeper and still unknown reality that embraces them both.
At the end of The Undiscovered Self, Jung asks, “Does the individual know that he or she is the makeweight that tips the scales that infinitesimal unit on whom a world depends?” Millions of people have no choice. Those of us who do have a measure of choice could rise to the immense challenge of defining and living a new and responsible role in relation to each other and our planetary home.