News-in-Transition

12 April 2017

 - In the wake of World War I, some veterans returned wounded, but not with obvious physical injuries. Instead, their symptoms were similar to those that had previously been associated with hysterical women – most commonly amnesia, or some kind of paralysis or inability to communicate with no clear physical cause.

English physician Charles Myers, who wrote the first paper on “shell-shock” in 1915, theorized that these symptoms actually did stem from a physical injury. He posited that repetitive exposure to concussive blasts caused brain trauma that resulted in this strange grouping of symptoms. But once put to the test, his hypothesis didn’t hold up. There were plenty of veterans who had not been exposed to the concussive blasts of trench warfare, for example, who were still experiencing the symptoms of shell-shock. (And certainly not all veterans who had seen this kind of battle returned with symptoms.)

We now know that what these combat veterans were facing was likely what today we call post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. We are now better able to recognize it, and treatments have certainly advanced, but we still don’t have a full understanding of just what PTSD is.

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11 April 2017

 -  Cannabis has been a friend to humankind since before the written word, providing fiber for cordage and cloth, seeds for nutrition, and roots, leaves and flowers for ritual and healing. During the Neolithic period, our ancestors discovered uses for every part of cannabis, which was one of the first agricultural crops, perhaps the first, ever to be grown and harvested some 12,000 years ago.

Agriculture, strictly speaking, is not a natural phenomenon. It is an expression of human ingenuity, an invention that has been described as the basis – literally the ground – of modern civilization.

Gertsch’s provocative thesis is that chronic metabolic disorders, currently a worldwide pandemic, are rooted in “a mismatch between ancient genes and high caloric diets” that ensued with the introduction of agriculture. “The multimillion year evolutionary process during which nearly all genetic change reflected the life circumstances of our ancestors [was] suddenly disturbed” when “carbohydrate farming” supplanted the “hunter-gatherer diet rich in animal food,” says Gertsch, who maintains that “the interplay between diet and the endocannabinoid system” is key to understanding today’s obesity/diabetes crisis and its potential remediation.

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11 April 2017

 - What do you think the biggest issues the world faces today are? Most people would say matters of bias and privilege, right? Well what if you could go somewhere where those weren't problems?

The truth is, you can. This utopia has existed for 50 years, even; it's called Auroville, and is located in Southern India.

The brainchild of Mirra Alfansa, Auroville is a universally welcoming place, regardless of nationality, culture, religion, or language.

Instead, it celebrates what we all are: Citizens of earth.

Alfansa created a charter by which the city runs, and no nation can claim property of the place. Instead, it belongs to the world.

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10 April 2017

 - Taking antibiotics may increase your risk of developing bowel cancer by up to 73 percent, according to a recent study. Bowel cancer, more commonly known as colorectal cancer, is a type of cancer that starts in the colon or rectum. It was recognized as the third most common cancer in the U.S. Data from a new study revealed that there will be an estimated 95,520 new cases of colon cancer and 39,910 new cases of rectal cancer in the country.

Researchers pooled data from the Nurses Health Study and found that undergoing antibiotic treatment between 15 days to two months increased the risk of developing adenomas or polyps by up to 36 percent in women aged 20 to 39 years. Study data also showed that the risk of adenoma diagnosis increased by up to 69 percent in women who had long-term antibiotic treatment in their forties or fifties. The overall risk of adenoma diagnosis was 73 percent higher in women who had long-term antibiotic treatment compared with those who did not take the drug, according to the study. However, more studies are needed to confirm the findings, researchers said.

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9 April 2017

 - On Monday, 20 March, Earth Heal hosted the Equinox group distant healing event for 220 participants around the world, roughly 70% people and 30% animals.

The treatment process was facilitated by Edna Spennato in Bahia, Brazil. The healing energy was anchored with the help of four human surrogates in three countries: one in South Africa, one in Argentina and two in the USA.

Many of the participants reported that they and/or their animal companions experienced powerful energies and sensations during and after the treatment, as well as detoxification processes in the days following the event.

Excerpts from the feedback received after the event are shown below.

Our next group distant healing event for 2017 will be happening on the Full Moon of Wednesday, 10 May. All are welcome to participate. More info to be posted closer to the event!

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9 April 2017

 - It’s been shown time and time again that living in communities with empathetic neighbors improves quality of life. And now a new study has taken it a step further and found levels of empathy in the U.S. vary drastically from state to state.

Researchers have turned their attention to studying empathy over the last decade, largely due to a disturbing trend where compassion for our fellow humans has taken a sharp downward turn, with narcissism on the rise. Social media and financial wealth both appear to play a large part in this move toward selfishness and self-involvement.

Before underestimating the importance of compassionate communities, consider this: empathy has been shown to encourage emotional and physical healing, facilitate communication, build trust and improve every level of business, while discouraging hate crimes, aggression, violence and bullying. Most importantly, it makes us happier, which creates a positive ripple effect out into the world.

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8 April 2017

 - “Managed chaos”. Brilliant. That’s Washington’s foreign policy in a nutshell.

That’s why there’s been no effort to create strong, stable, secular governments that can provide security for their people in any of the countries the US has destroyed in the last 16 years, because this long string of failed states that now stretches from North Africa, through the Middle East and into Central Asia (The ‘arc of instability’) create a permanent justification for US military intervention as well as strategic access to vital resources.

So why waste money and time on nation building when nation building runs counter to Washington’s strategic objectives? Instead, decimate the nation state wherever you go, and leave the people to scratch out a miserable hardscrabble existence for themselves while fending off the relentless violence and persecution of tribal elders or local warlords.

Is that a fair assessment of US foreign policy?

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8 April 2017

 - New research shows that octopuses and other cephalopods have a tremendous capacity to alter and edit their own genes, which scientists believe to be the reason behind their shocking intelligence and ability to learn.

An octopus really shouldn't be intelligent by all rights. Their brains have 1/20th the amount of neurons as humans, and it isn't centralized in their body. Instead, they have a miniature brain in the bases of their arms.

And yet the octopus has both short and long-term memory. It can solve mazes and other simple problems. They've been observed using tools and building things. While their intellect is well-known, scientists have struggled to understand why such prodigious intelligence manifested in such an unlikely creature.

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7 April 2017

 - Recently, with the work of scientists, activists, responsible politicians and institutions around the globe, organic and sustainable agriculture started to be studied and promoted as an option for large-scale production and was also embraced by individuals who started growing their own food by adapting to modern living conditions. An argument against organic agriculture is lower productivity, but the positive aspects for the consumers are regarded as far more important.

The Rodale Institute in the USA carried out a 30-year long study to compare organic and conventional farming which concludes that: “Our current chemical-based agricultural system is already showing its weaknesses – depleted soil, poisoned water, negative impact on human and environmental health, and dysfunctional rural communities.”

The study shows that, if correctly performed, organic agriculture uses 45% less energy and produces 40% less greenhouse gases than conventional methods, since it also keeps the soils fertile for a much longer period of time. Ancient approaches such as crop diversity and rotation, attracting natural pest eliminators are combined with latest technologies that facilitate the use of alternate sources of energy, including wind and solar power.

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7 April 2017

 - So, it comes down to us. We the people are the last resort, the last line of defense, the last chance for peace. Without immediate action by us, escalating events may soon result in the unthinkable.

But perhaps if enough of us get on the phone and are persistent and loud enough, our Senators and Congressional reps will do their job, which is to represent us. Congress must immediately pass legislation rescinding the broad war powers bestowed on the president after 9/11. Here is the Washington Capitol switchboard number (202-224-3121). Please call Friday morning — EARLY!  We must catch our reps before the weekend.

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6 April 2017

 - Early last year, it was reported that Planned Parenthood was illegally profiting from selling aborted body parts. The Center for Medical Progress released an undercover video from inside Planned Parenthood that revealed the tricks and tactics used by the women’s health organization to illegally sell dismembered fetuses. Documents that were released just weeks later by a Congressional committee, went on to confirm the video’s claims.

In a research article published by Jessica Farnsworth in May of 2011, Farnsworth addresses the link between aborted fetuses and vaccine production, a relationship that leads one to conclude that the vaccine industry may in fact be largely reliant on Planned Parenthood.

As the study points out, past investigations reveal that abortion facilities that supply aborted fetuses to researchers are offered a fee by the research facilities so that the baby’s organs can be harvested immediately and on-site.

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6 April 2017

 - One of the biggest modern myths about agriculture is that organic farming is inherently sustainable. It can be, but it isn’t necessarily. After all, soil erosion from chemical-free tilled fields undermined the Roman Empire and other ancient societies around the world. Other agricultural myths hinder recognizing the potential to restore degraded soils to feed the world using fewer agrochemicals.

When I embarked on a six-month trip to visit farms around the world to research my forthcoming book, “Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life,” the innovative farmers I met showed me that regenerative farming practices can restore the world’s agricultural soils. In both the developed and developing worlds, these farmers rapidly rebuilt the fertility of their degraded soil, which then allowed them to maintain high yields using far less fertilizer and fewer pesticides.

Their experiences, and the results that I saw on their farms in North and South Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Ghana and Costa Rica, offer compelling evidence that the key to sustaining highly productive agriculture lies in rebuilding healthy, fertile soil.

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5 March 2017

 - Children younger than 15 – some as young as 5 – work from 6 am till even ing in West Africa at cocoa farms connected to Nestlé, Hershey, Mars, Kraft, ADM Cocoa, Godiva, and Fowler’s Chocolate to produce your favorite chocolates including Reese’s, Kit Kat, M&M’s, MilkyWay and Butterfinger.

In September 2015, three class action lawsuits brought in California accused Nestlé, Hershey, and Mars of turning a blind eye to human rights abuses by cocoa suppliers in West Africa while falsely portraying themselves as socially and ethically responsible. Nestlé, Cargill and ADM are currently facing a separate lawsuit brought by three Malian former child slaves in 2005 that accuses the companies of aiding and abetting child slavery in Côte d’Ivoire’s cocoa market.

The shocking 2000 documentary titled Slavery: A Global Investigation exposes the chocolate industry’s deep, dark connection to cocoa harvested by child slaves. The guardian of 19 children freed from slavery by the Ivorian authorities told the makers how they worked from dawn until dusk each day, locked in a shed at night where they were given a tin cup in which to urinate, stripped naked, tied up and routinely beaten...

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