Melencolia_I_(Durero)Negative thoughts have a way of inserting themselves unbidden into our minds. They reflect the unhappiness, perversity, and tragedy in our past and in the world about us. Only a Pollyanna would be ashamed to acknowledge them.

Negative thinking does little harm as a long as it simply passes like a shadow across the otherwise sunny landscape of the mind. But negative thoughts bear a burden of emotion. They tend to plant themselves squarely in our path and grow roots. We dwell on them, sometimes for hours at a time. In certain cases this can lead to genuine depression. More often, habitual negative thinking tends to make people unhappy, pessimistic, cynical, suspicious, and morose. It also wastes precious resources of time and emotional energy.

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saffron

The Afghan Herbal Medicines for Addiction and Depression project aims to conduct clinical trials of promising herbal medicines drawn from Afghanistan’s high-potential medicinal and aromatic plants (MAP) sector, in keeping with traditional Unani medicine. Addiction (overwhelmingly from opiates) and depression (some from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder from the horrors of Afghanistan’s wars, and some from mistreatment of women) represent especially salient targets, and they possess worldwide importance. Unani herbal medicines have been reported in preliminary Iranian clinical studies to be effective and safe in these indications, and they possess certain advantages over synthetic drugs. However, thorough, scientific, multicenter trials need to be done.

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Roman Art (Powerpoint)

 

Here are the judge’s March 16, 2020 Order and Memorandum opinion giving his final ruling.  For a general explanation of the anthrax mailings case, see Was Abderraouf Jdey the Anthrax Mailer?  The judge does not appear to have read it.

Of the documents, the first set was released by FBI in the course of the litigation.  The second set includes selected lawsuit documents from Dillon v. U.S. Department of Justice.  Following this is a discussion of possible destruction of evidence. 

The first set includes 102 pages of emails to and from accused Mailer Bruce Ivins, released by FBI on court order on March 20, 2019, plus Laboratory Notebook 4282. FOIA request #1327397 sought Ivins’s emails and other documents for September and October, 2001. FOIA request #1329530 sought the Table of Contents and the 16 pages on Ivins from the 2000-page Interim Major Case Summary of 2006.  After repeated failures to find emails, FBI experts located them as 1A attachments in the Amerithrax file.

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Mad ScientistWouldn’t it be wonderful to master techniques that can lead to breakthroughs in your research? No doubt you already have your own arsenal of qualitative methods, but we all can benefit from learning more. For your consideration, here are five approaches to the various techniques used to arrive at the findings in the articles and books on this Website:

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People occupy corners and have jurisdiction. Truth, conversely, is sovereign, making contact with all. The necessary, universal, and eternal impose on the contingent, particular, and finite. So truth, once seen, seeks a mandate, demanding to override.

Many try to align themselves with the truth in source of their own. They may claim privileged access to it, fashion themselves as sources of it, or even create personas that present them as embodiments of it. Per Yuval-Harari, you must link yourself to a transcendental thing in any battle of the wills. This will allow you to efficiently co-opt its authority for yourself. 

A contrarian can be defined as someone who

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What makes a theory good? In his canonical 1991 book Inference to the Best Explanation, Peter Lipton attempts to answer this fraught question. The philosopher identifies eleven explanatory virtues that are often placed within four groupings: evidential, coherential, aesthetic, and diachronic. Two others, James Beebe1 and Kenneth Dillon2, draw upon the same categorical schema to present four other virtues for consideration.  All fifteen are listed and defined in the following table:

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The European Economy, 1500-1650

I. Framework

  • climate: warm to 1600; Little Ice Age, 1600-1850
  • population: 1500: 80 million; 1600: 115 million, then stagnation
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bracelet-lge1.  Medicinal bracelets offer an attractive, simple, easy-to-use kind of natural medicine.  They can also teach us much about deeper patterns of physiology and nutrition.

2.  The bracelets can be composed of various minerals.  In practice, to avoid overdosing of trace elements, they tend to contain mainly copper and zinc.  The principles governing bracelets also apply to other kinds of jewelry, but here also one needs to steer clear of overdosing.  In South Asia silver anklets actually may be implicated

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Nuclear Waste Toxicity

Remix & Return is a concept for solving the vexing problem of the disposal of radioactive waste. It refers to remixing waste with uranium mine and mill tailings, then returning the mixture to the mines from which it came. The average original level of radioactivity of the uranium ore before it was extracted is first estimated, and this becomes the upper, “natural” limit of the tailings and waste that may be reinserted into a given mine.

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Caffeine, the world’s most widely used psychoactive substance, attracts a lot of research. Caffeine also attracts controversy. Some scientists argue that caffeine is a benign and useful drug whose side effects are only of concern in regard to a small number of “sensitives”, including those with pre-existing anxiety or similar symptoms. They note that caffeine improves attention, reaction time, numeric and verbal memory, and work output and endurance in long-term exercise.

But other researchers claim that caffeine causes multiple damaging effects ranging from boosting blood pressure to disrupting sleep, and that these affect hundreds of millions.

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hammurabishamash2Atop the famous stele containing Hammurabi’s Code is a depiction of Hammurabi and Shamash, the Sun god, who was also the Babylonian god of justice.  The swirling headdress of Shamash in this image might seem merely decorative, but in fact it possesses a dynamic meaning.

At the back of Shamash’s neck is an oval object that has no obvious purpose.  It appears to be attached to the coiled shape of the headdress, as if it were the head of a serpent.  But why would Shamash be wearing a serpent on his head?

To answer this question, one must become aware of the compelling new evidence for and reinterpretation of

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