< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 202 OF 202 ·
|Dec-07-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <jessicafischerqueen> Glad you like the list too. It hits on a basic yearning of human historical curiosity. Just what is the material universe made of, and by how much of each element?|
|Dec-07-13|| ||twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor>|
I suspect the problems of changing from U to Th powered reactors is analogous to several other rational transitions that never occurred.
The public policy process has by and large morphed into a corporate funding model of society which favours entrenched paradigms. I see it as rationalism vs rationality.
Rationalism being more about the pursuit of short term policy objectives that favour entrenched interests including stock holders, as distinct from rationality in which long term policy objectives favour broader community interests (which are by definition decentralised) that would be supportive of preserving the world's ecosystems for the future profit of humanity rather than the short term profits of corporates and their governmental shills.
This is IMO exacerbated by the transition of bureaucratic plutocracy into something resembling a global kleptocracy.
Nelson Mandela was able, with the help of his supporters, to dismantle political apartheid, but was helpless to ameliorate let alone reform the kleptocratic economic system that bred apartheid and which that system insisted remain entrenched in South Africa. There has been very little debate about why the ANC program of socialism never took off once apartheid fell.
|Dec-07-13|| ||twinlark: <jessicafischerqueen: <Doggimus> jinx I was just looking at that list too. It's great eh?|
I'm curious why this is a "guilty pleasure" for you?>
|Dec-07-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: Will you tell me if I mail you some wine?
At university we used to buy Australian wine because you paid much less for similar quality Aussie wine than for French wine.
I can't quite remember the brand names now. I think one of them was called "The Dingo Ate My Baby" but I can't be certain.
|Dec-08-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <The public policy process has by and large morphed into a corporate funding model of society which favours entrenched paradigms. I see it as rationalism vs rationality.|
Rationalism being more about the pursuit of short term policy objectives that favour entrenched interests including stock holders, as distinct from rationality in which long term policy objectives favour broader community interests (which are by definition decentralised) that would be supportive of preserving the world's ecosystems for the future profit of humanity rather than the short term profits of corporates and their governmental shills.>
Good point. I believe that the energy crisis could have been solved way back in the 1960s after the first MSR experimental reactor proved that the technology could viably use thorium. The present energy crisis is an artificial artifact of human society's most powerful entrenched institutions.
The founding of the fiat money 'petrodollar' economy in Nixon's time probably made things worse for the incipient Thorium economy, as USA became much more committed to the oil lobby. The Thorium lobby IMO has two main rivals- the water cooled nuclear reactor lobby and the oil lobby.
|Dec-08-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Doctor>
I'm re-posting this from your forum, where I forgot that you've been posting your medical journal.
I have in fact been reading your lengthy conversation with <doggimus>, and I did read the recent go-round on the "nature of consciousness. I was hoping you might have some insight on something about my consciousness.
I seem to experience dreams as more vivid and more "real" than reality.
The feeling I get from the dream world is so "real" and exciting that I find myself wanting to stay there, even when the dream is a nightmare.
I try many times to get back into certain dreams I have, but it never happens the way I want. I do return to old dreamscapes at random sometimes. Some of them are dozens of years old too.
Do you think I am going mental?
|Dec-08-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <jessicafischerqueen: I seem to experience dreams as more vivid and more "real" than reality.> You may be having lucid dreams, a dream that you are aware you are dreaming, and thus feels more real to you. A few people have this ability. |
<Do you think I am going mental?> No. I have read that in some socially acceptable Buddhist cultures there are forms of 'dream yoga' wherein the master tries to teach the student lucid dreaming.
I seem to have the ability myself. Once I had this recurrent childhood nightmare of a monster chasing after me. I decided that next time it appeared, I would decide within the dream that it's just a dream. I taught myself to be aware that it is a dream. Next time the monster appeared, I just willed and erased it from the dream since I was now aware that it's just a dream and that I can control certain aspects of it. The poor dream monster apparently got tired of being deleted all the time from my dreams that it has stopped appearing at all.
Normally I do not dream in color and I have read in an article that visual dreams are always in black and white. One night, I decided to see for myself. Before sleeping, I told myself to dream in color. I immediately did so. I was standing by a dry river bank composed of brightly colored layered sedimentary deposits. I was surprised even within the dream because the article I had read claimed that all dreams are in black and white. I perfectly knew I was dreaming a rebuttal against that article, in a lucid dream.
I never forget that lucid dreams are dreams, and there is a reality after them. It might interest you that for me as a writer, lucid dreams are very useful. If my NGO is requiring me to write an article for the sake of our cause that they want printed in one of our internet sites, or in a local newspaper, or in a school publication, and I can't think of how to write the article, I sleep over it, willing myself to dream about it. In such cases the dream is not in audio-visual form, but it occurs to me as ideas. When I wake up, I have the whole article in my mind. I write it down quickly before I forget it, and edit grammatical errors later.
Using this technique, I have been able to write at least four books in the past in record time. I just keep on writing everyday what is given me in the dream.
As an English teacher, perhaps you also make use of this lucid dream technique to write stuff?
<I was hoping you might have some insight on something about my consciousness>
I do not know what to make even of my own consciousness. The more I think of the phenomenon of consciousness, the more I feel I know nothing about it. That's really weird because in my job, the first thing I try to observe is the degree that a patient is conscious. But it's like a recipe; patient is unconscious, then there must be a lesion in her Ascending Reticular Activating System, from the upper pons to the diencephalon. It's useful to localize brain lesions and pathologies. However as for the nature of consciousnesses itself, I know next to nothing.
Going back to <some insight on something about my consciousness>, I think you are doing perfectly fine. In fact you may be one of the fortunate few who have the ability of lucid dreaming.
|Dec-08-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Good Doctor>
Thanks for such a detailed and insightful response.
I especially like how you implied that notions such as "going mental" have a lot to do with cultural practices, not just to do with the individual brain organism. The brain is never outside of cultural contexts.
I have dreamed lucidly, but on very rare occasions.
I have always dreamed in color.
I can report that when I do return to previous dreamscapes, sometimes from decades earlier, the feeling of recognition is often overwhelming, and I'd categorize these as religious experiences.
I want to be there; I want to stay there. I wish I could live out my days inside of shifting dreams.
Looks like I picked a bad decade to stop dropping acid.
That's a joke from the movie "Airplane."
In fact, during my "psychedelic drug days" I never remembered any dreams. Marijuana in particular would ensure I would never remember any dreams at all.
|Dec-08-13|| ||dakgootje: I surely have never seen that movie.
In other news I'll read up on all that intelligent stuff written earlier - when I've got a bit of time.
Which may, with any luck, be Tuesday! :)
|Dec-10-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <jessicafischerqueen: The brain is never outside of cultural contexts.>|
Good point. Same for dreams.
Although "idea" dreams are quite useful to me, as they allow me to write without having to exert much effort, personally I have never been unusually enamored of or obsessed by dreams. They occur when they occur, and may be useful in real life.
From a Medical point of view.. I believe no one has come close to comprehending the phenomenon of dreaming. Studies have shown that there are several kinds of dreaming. Ideally each type of dreaming should be thoroughly studied.
Furthermore, there are strong indications that humans, and probably most mammals, need to dream in order to stay alive. Prolonged dream deprivation seems to shut down the brain (or even kill it) for unknown reasons. Yet bothersome as the question is, no one knows why we need to dream to stay alive.
Philosophically, consciousness, self awareness, and dreams IMO are also very much related, and may even represent manifestations of the same fundamental reality.
|Dec-10-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: In the discussion on consciousness several scrolls above, it was theorized that consciousness is a fundamental phenomenon of the Universe, and not necessarily an emergent phenomenon of brain functions. If dreaming and consciousness are fundamentally the same phenomenon, just manifested in different forms, it sounds reasonable that to cease dreaming means to cease one's consciousnesses. To stop dreaming means to directly die, without the need for brain damage to mediate the ceasing of consciousness.|
Just some philosophical speculation..
|Dec-10-13|| ||twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor: In the discussion on consciousness several scrolls above, it was theorized that consciousness is a fundamental phenomenon of the Universe, and not necessarily an emergent phenomenon of brain functions.>|
Some eastern philosophies consider consciousness to be fundamental phenomenon of the Universe, as are its manifestations of intelligence and love.
Perhaps consciousness is not so much an emergent phenomenon of the brain so much as an emergent phenomenon of the universe itself?
Just as rotation of a body exists entirely as a function of its relative position to at least one other body, perhaps consciousness exists as a function of it's relatedness to other consciousnesses?
Just thinking "aloud".
|Dec-11-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Doctor, Doggimus>
Interesting. If consciousness may be a fundamental phenomenon of the universe, then maybe the Aussie Aboriginal idea that "dream time" is just as real as "awake time" makes sense.
I'm not an expert though. My source for this aboriginal idea is the Werner Herzog film "Where the Green Ants Dream."
|Dec-11-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <twinlark, jessicafischerqueen> Indeed fascinating points you have.|
Have you watched the film <Inception>? Any opinions?
|Dec-11-13|| ||twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor>|
Loved Inception, although I can't imagine that the geometrically magnified time flow within successive layers of consciousness has any real basis apart from as a cinematic device to enable all the sub plots to function like temporal babushka events.
But it does bring to mind Poe's whimsical "All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream."
I could live with that.
|Dec-11-13|| ||twinlark: <jessica>
It's thought provoking. They lived it for 50 millennia so they were doing something right.
Wish I could have some.
|Dec-11-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Doctor Mabuse>
I did indeed watch <Inception> but I failed to follow the plot. I fear this may be due to the limitations of my simple "cow" brain.
I may go back to it armed with a concordance.
Have you seen the film <Primer>?
You can read a bit about it here: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0390384...
On my first viewing I found it compelling but impossible to understand. Ostensibly it's about two tech workers who invent a time machine. But really it investigates our experience of time itself, particularly the notion of how we apprehend chronology.
I watched it again after first consulting this rather excellent concordance:
The film might mainly be about the limits of the human understanding of even a simple chronology. It reminded me of <Memento>, but it was much more difficult to understand.
A film like <Memento> is hard to follow at first, but not hard to follow on a second viewing because you know that the chronology is just a depiction of the main character's consciousness of his own personal experience of time. Since he has no short term memory due to a brain injury, if we "watch" his experience of time, to us it will run backwards instead of forwards.
That is not difficult to comprehend, so once we understand this "key" on a second viewing, the film narrative is easy to follow.
But in the film <Primer>, the characters start out with simple "time travel and return" using their time travel machine. But the machine is portable and easy to construct, so they start taking copies of their machine along with them and soon there are so many "start and return" points in the narrative that it is almost impossible to follow. The best part is that the two characters also start to become very confused by their own experience, so much so that at the end of the film they have completely lost track of "when" they are.
|Dec-11-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: I have watched <Primer> and it is the most fascinating time travel film I have ever watched. I have watched it half a dozen times but I must admit I am still as much lost as the two main characters. Yet somehow, in this film being lost in time feels perfectly fine.|
<The film might mainly be about the limits of the human understanding of even a simple chronology.>
It's possible that the fundamental phenomenon of consciousness may not follow our perception of ordinary time. There are times that must have occurred to all of us (especially when we are exhausted) that we fell asleep at say 6pm, intending only to take a nap for an hour, and woke up at 6am next morning, and upon waking up thought it was 7pm the on same night and that we just slept for an hour.
Some brain injured patients have it worse. Typically a patient's last memory is getting on a motorcycle and riding on the highway. His next memory is that he is at home, with a huge incision on his scalp where I did a craniectomy. Being admitted, getting operated, waking up after the operation, getting discharged, are all lost to his consciousness.
I also loved <Inception>, especially when I realized at the beginning of the film that it dealt with the theme of lucid dreaming and the question of what is the reality and what is the dream.
The first sci-fi film I have watched on the theme of dreaming is <Dreamscape>. It had an immediate impact on me because my native culture has this idea, also found in the film, that when one dies in a dream, one dies in reality.
|Dec-11-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Doctor Caligari>
I also liked <Dreamscape> starring Dennis Quaid, right?
I saw it as a child and the "Lizard Monster" scared me bad. But most scary to me was the idea that he would be trapped forever dreaming about the monster.
Is there any clinical evidence for a person actually dying because of a dream?
I think maybe collecting evidence would be impossible?
|Dec-11-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: <Doggimus>
On your alert update, I have downloaded <Shane Crouton's> new movie. I will watch it and give a report soon. Until you posted that link, I hadn't realized <Crouton> was also an actor in <Primer>. As you know, <Crouton> is also an actor in his new movie, "Unfinished Business."
Actually I already forgot the title. Do I win a bun?
I saved it to my desktop though so I'm sure to find it again tonight.
|Dec-11-13|| ||jessicafischerqueen: My <Good Doctor>
I think you probably already recognized this, but I've been typing your name with doctors from famous films, since we have been discussing some films.
"Mabuse" and "Caligari" are from German Expressionist films, as you likely know.
Very frightening films, I might add.
|Dec-12-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: <jessicafischerqueen> Unfortunately I am not much of a film aficionado, except for sci-fi genre. But I have watched two films starring Dr. Hannibal the Cannibal. I wanted to see if he does eat brains.|
In Medical school, we are taught that dying in one's sleep is typically caused by pancreatitis. Personally I doubt it. It's probably very painful, and should be enough to wake up a patient. At any rate, people sicken and die in their sleep all the time, I suspect mostly from strokes.
|Dec-12-13|| ||SugarDom: Speaking of dreams, it's weird that in some places or situation i feel that i have been there in my dreams before. Does that occur to you too, guys? A feeling of deja vu.|
|Dec-13-13|| ||twinlark: The only time I can recall that kind of thing happening was when I was young and had a dream that I later saw in a comic my elder brothers brought home.|
It was such a long time ago that I can't swear that the passage of years hasn't reversed the sequence in my memory, but that is my recollection.
Beyond that, no.
|Dec-13-13|| ||visayanbraindoctor: I hav never had a deja vu sleeping dream. Instead I get weird thoughts that probably can be best described as 'waking dreams' or perhaps 'getting ideas while in some kind of trance'.|
The weirdest series of 'waking dreams' occurred in 1999. I became convinced that a terrible international event would occur. I believed that a weapon of mass destruction would be used in a major city, and I rationalized that it would be a nuclear bomb. I was so convinced that I wrote about it almost two years before it occurred, that such a thing was inevitable. Well, 9-11 occurred. When I first received a text message on it, I remember not being surprised at all at first. I was totally expecting it for almost two years. OK so finally it happens was my reaction! Deja vu? But I did get a surprise after all. I was expecting a nuclear bomb, and it turned out not.
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