post written by: Marc Chernoff

60 Popular Pieces of False Knowledge


False Knowledge

Mark Twain once said, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

Here are 60 pieces of false knowledge many people misquote as absolute facts.

  1. Shaving causes hair to grow back thicker. – Shaving does not cause hair to grow back thicker.  This false knowledge carried by many people is due to the fact that hair wears down and appears thinner over time.  Thus, new hair looks thinner than old hair and feels coarser due to unworn edges.
  2. We only use 10% of our brain. – We may only be using 10% of our total brain at any one given time, but this 10% is nearly 100% of the brain capacity designed to calculate the data sets we are currently working on.  For example, the creative side of the brain isn’t going to help you remember a statistics formula.  It wasn’t designed to do so and it will remain unused during this process.
  3. Rice is pure and healthy. – Actually, it’s often contaminated with small traces of arsenic.
  4. Milk is absolutely essential to your health. – It’s just one of numerous sources for calcium and Vitamin D.
  5. People should eat mostly carbohydrates. – After all, that’s what the food pyramid says, right?  False!  Look around at the average American’s midsection.  An excessive intake of carbohydrates is fattening.  Wholegrain foods containing fiber should be the primary source.
  6. Tar and nicotine in cigarettes cause cancer. – Nope, excessive smoke in your lungs causes cancer.  In fact, the Radon and Polonium in the smoke is enough to account for most cases of cigarette related lung cancer.
  7. Being overworked can cause a nervous breakdown. – Actually, nervous breakdowns do not even appear as an official mental health disorder in DSM-IV.
  8. Depression is purely biochemical. – Depression is more closely related to a specific cognitive state of mind.
  9. Male masturbation is unhealthy. – I’m sure most teenage guys will love this.  Research has shown that masturbating early and often may reduce Prostate Cancer later in life.
  10. Females are biologically inferior in math and spatial skills. – Statistically, males and females have very similar grade averages in math courses from grade school through doctorate level classes.  Male enrollment, however, drastically out-numbers female enrollment.
  11. Based on global warming Earth will be hotter in 2000 years. – Nothing is certain.  In this kind of complex nonlinear system, we could have an ice age.
  12. Corn based fuel (biodiesel) is better than gasoline. – It’s more expensive, increases the cost of food and still pollutes the environment.
  13. Religious faith alone heals. – This is only true on a physiological basis to a minuscule degree.  Religious faith cannot replace medical intervention.
  14. Herbal medicine is healthier than modern medicine. – In numerous cases herbal medicine has been found to have either zero value or undesirable side effects.
  15. Chills don’t make you ill. – Wrong!  Getting a chill in your body shocks your immune system, which prevents it from effectively keeping viruses at bay.
  16. Highly social people are psychologically healthier. – Not healthier, but usually a bit happier.
  17. Nutritional supplements make you live longer. – Quite often the opposite is true.  Many people misuse supplements and end up doing more harm than good to their bodies.
  18. Hair and fingernails continue to grow after death. – Hair and fingernails do not grow at all after a person dies.  This illusion is based on the fact that skin dries up and shrivels away from the foundation of hair roots and nails, making the hair and nails look longer than before death.
  19. String Theory – There has been zero proof that String Theory relates to the physical universe.
  20. The Big Bang was an explosion. – It was an expansion of space, not an explosion.
  21. Windows is easier to use than Linux. – Linux, harder?  Only if you are completely against the notion of learning something new.
  22. A true free market exists. – Take a hard look at the price of oil and tell me that the recent 100% price spike is completely based around supply and demand and not partial price manipulation.
  23. Ozone is healthy. – Ozone is only healthy when used in controlled medical environments.  Outside of that, it is harmful to the lungs if inhaled.
  24. Stretching before exercise is a sure thing. – Only if you stretch properly.  Many people injure themselves due to improper stretching practices.
  25. Weight belts prevent injuries. – If used properly when lifting extreme amounts of weight, they do help.  The problem is that most amateur weight lifters swing their bodies and hyper-extend their backs while lifting weight with their upper body.  When they wear weight belts for upper body exercises they still swing their bodies and hyper-extend their backs, only this time they use more weight and the injuries are more severe.
  26. Soap kills germs. – Plain (non-antibacterial) hand soap does not kill germs.  Instead, it lifts the germs off the surface of your skin, forcing them to be washed down the drain.
  27. Alcohol is a great antiseptic for open wounds. – Alcohol is a great disinfectant for intact skin and inanimate, non-living things.  Alcohol is not effective or healthy when applied into open wounds. When used on open, exposed tissue, alcohol actually kills some of the human tissue along with the germs. This can drastically delay the healing of larger wounds.
  28. Coffee is unhealthy. – It’s all about moderation and timing.  If you take excessive doses of coffee late in the day, you’ll be up all night, and that’s not healthy.  However, coffee is also a great source of healthy antioxidants.  Coffee consumption has been medically linked to the reduction of certain cancers and chronic diseases.  There have even been controlled studies which have concluded that moderate doses of coffee can be a healthy energy booster for a person partaking is intense physical exercise.
  29. Fructose is healthier than Sucrose. – Sucrose (table sugar) is made from sugarcane.  Fructose is usually made from corn (also found in fruits) and is a cheaper alternative to Sucrose.  Once thought to be healthier, fructose actually has many negative downsides.  Some of these downsides include cholesterol increases and digestion difficulty, in addition to the fact that it converts to fat more easily than other types of sugar.
  30. Exercise alone increases lifespan. – It increases the quality of your life and the ability of your body, but exercise alone has not been proven to increase lifespan.  A regular habit of eating healthy food, however, will.
  31. Time heals all wounds. – Time does heal most psychological wounds, but if the wound is severe (e.g. someone killed your spouse) it may never fully heal.
  32. Eye exercises can improve vision. – Eye exercises for improving vision have never been scientifically proven to work.  Results contain significant variance.
  33. Cheese is healthy. – Regular cheese contains an extremely high content of fat.  As with anything, moderation is the key.  In smaller doses it can be a decent source of calcium and protein.
  34. Tan people look good, so tanning in the sun is okay. – Extremely tan people have burnt skin.  Check back with them at age 60 when they have skin cancer.
  35. Swimming in chlorine pools is healthy. – While the chlorine levels found in most swimming pools won’t noticeably hurt a swimmer, continuous exposure is unhealthy for the skin and the eyes.  True saltwater pools are a much healthier alternative.
  36. Jogging along a traveled roadway is healthy. – Jogging along a traveled roadway forces the jogger to inhale large quantities of air polluted with car exhaust.  Like secondhand smoke, this can be extremely bad for the health of a person’s lungs.
  37. Heading a soccer ball doesn’t hurt the player. – Soccer players don’t just head the ball; frequently their heads collide with another player’s head while trying to head the ball.  In both cases there remains a potential for mild amounts of brain damage, especially when the heading is repeated over a long period of time.
  38. Free-diving doesn’t cause brain damage. – Do you really think it’s healthy for the human body to remain in deep water with no oxygen for extended periods of time?   Based on the complications of pressure equalization and a lack of oxygen, free-diving will cause small amounts of neurological damage no matter how you breathe out while ascending.
  39. Brain scan imaging tells us lots about the mind. – Understanding the brain by looking at brain scan images is sort of like trying to evaluate a software-based computer problem by looking inside the computer case.  You may locate the hard-drive, but you’ll never know exactly what’s on it.  Brain scans are efficient at detecting gross physical abnormalities, which do save lives. However, much of the claims about reading a persons thoughts and future is complete nonsense.  Brain scanning cannot even reliably detect early stage Alzheimer’s disease as of yet.
  40. Rorschach inkblot tests are reliable. – Various studies have depicted the conclusions found by inkblot test administrators as being akin to fortune teller cold readings.  The controversy stems from several factors including the potential variance of interpretation, general verifiability and reliability, the inability to completely baseline testing norms and the limited number of psychological conditions the test is supposedly capable of determining.
  41. Positive thinking (and the placebo effect) helps heal cancer. – Medical treatment is the only way to eliminate cancer cells.  Positive thinking does nothing more than help cancer patients mentally prepare for medical treatment.
  42. Eggs are unhealthy. – Eggs are a food you should eat regularly, but in moderation.  They are a great source of essential nutrients and high in protein.  Unfortunately, they also contain a high level of cholesterol, which means limiting intake to 1 or 2 eggs a day.
  43. Regular dentist visits create healthy teeth. – Dentists repair problems and make suggestions.  Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing will create healthy teeth.
  44. Poor people are lazy. – Money is not always the best measure of personal effort and drive.  Remember, some millionaires are very poor and some people with small incomes are very rich… in happiness.
  45. Asians are smarter than Caucasians. – Asian grade schools are typically more disciplined and demanding than public school systems elsewhere (especially the USA).  So while Asians do not dominate over Caucasians in intelligence, many of them come out of grade school with a much better education.
  46. You can drink as much water as you want. – It may sound weird, but people do die from fatal water overdoses.  An overdose occurs when an overabundance of water in the body causes regular salt levels in the blood to become drastically diluted.  This dilution can cause swelling in the brain and organs which may result in coma or death.
  47. Ivy League students get the best education. – Education is about self-discipline, curiosity and personal drive.  Some of the most educated and successful people on this planet are self-educated.  Strictly from a formal education standpoint, think about the fact that MIT (a top technical school) and Duke (a top medical school) are not Ivy League.
  48. Human growth hormone (HGH) increases life span. – In many cases the opposite is actually true.  HGH does tend to improve the quality of life in a person’s elder years by reducing fat production in the body while increasing muscle mass.  However, no critical factors for extending a person’s life span are affected, such as bone density improvements, cholesterol level reduction, lipid measurements, maximal oxygen consumption, or any other factor that would increase a body’s durability.  Regular consumption of HGH has also been linked to various negative side effects such as joint swelling, joint pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and an amplified risk of diabetes.
  49. Shouting into a phone helps the other person hear you. – In most cases it will rattle your phone’s microphone and distort the sound of your voice, thus making it harder for the other person to comprehend your words.
  50. Tabasco sauce causes stomach cancer. – This is an urban legend.  In reality, researchers have discovered that spicy pepper sauces may actually help fight the growth of cancer cells.  The University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine found that capsaicin (the hot ingredient in pepper sauce) induces apoptosis in the cancer cells.
  51. Karate works better than dirty street fighting. – Sad, but true… The dirty street fighter with a concealed weapon will probably win the fight outside of a formal fighting ring.
  52. Expensive CD players produce better sound quality. – If you want better sound quality spend your money on a decent amplifier, equalizer and a high quality set of speakers.  An expensive input device like a CD player is worthless if the other components are not in place.
  53. Monster Cables (expensive audio/video cables) are worth it. – In most cases you will hear and see no difference in the quality between a Monster Cable and a standard cable.  The only exceptions occur in extremely high end systems where slight cable attenuation creates a noticeable difference in clarity.
  54. Lie detector (polygraph) tests are accurate. – The American Civil Liberties Union released a report in 1996 stating that “…there is no machine that can detect lies.  The ‘lie detector‘ does not measure truth-telling; it measures changes in blood pressure, breath rate and perspiration rate, but those physiological changes can be triggered by a wide range of emotions.”
  55. Raw veggies are always healthier for you. – Cooking certain kinds of vegetables such as onions and garlic can actually increase the variety and potency of nutrients that get released inside a person’s digestive track.  In addition, cooking vegetables also eliminates the potential for bacterial contamination such as salmonella.
  56. SUV’s are safer than regular cars. – When it comes to vehicles, bigger does not mean safer.  Many SUV models are top heavy and have poor handling.  Several recent accident-related death statistics have shown that fatality rates in SUV’s are no lower than those in standard size vehicles.
  57. Soft water is healthier than hard water. – Reverse it.  Hard water is healthier than soft water.  Hard water contains natural minerals and is sodium free.  Soft water has sodium and is stripped of all natural minerals.  So why do people soften water?  Soft water has cleaning benefits.  When soft water is used, soap lathers better and cleans objects more efficiently, kitchenware and shower glass will sparkle and remain scum-free and hair and skin will also feel smoother.
  58. Astrology has value. – Astrology is one of the world’s oldest con games.  It’s complete rubbish.  People want to believe that the future can be predicted, which is exactly why the traditions of Astrology still exist in modern cultures.
  59. Chiropractic therapy can cure various diseases. – Chiropractic therapy has been medically proven to help with some joint and bone related injuries, comparable to various forms of physical therapy.  However, there is no medical proof to backup the popular assertions from chiropractors claiming that chiropractic therapy is an effective remedy for other diseases or conditions (such as chronic stress headaches).
  60. IQ is a perfect measure of intelligence. IQ tests are only one of many imperfect techniques for measuring human intelligence.  IQ tests don’t measure creativity, social skills, general wisdom, learned aptitude or an entire gamut of other traits most people would consider as a measurement of intelligence.  IQ tests can be used as a measure of basic intellectual potential, but do not reflect accurate measurements in all circumstances.

For more in depth info on False Knowledge, please read:

Note: This article is a guest post written by Penny and slightly copy-edited by Marc.  Marc is the primary author of Marc and Angel Hack Life and Penny is a regular reader and contributor.

Photo by: banoootah_qtr

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92 Comments

  • I’m glad to hear about the coffee thing and the tabasco sauce. I should be in good shape! I was surprised that positive thinking didn’t help more than you indicate here in combating cancer. I always thought that positive thinking boosted your immune system or increased some chemical in the body that would help you stay healthier. Who knew?

  • Number 18 is only true for high-frequency AC electricity, not DC. And for practical purposes, low-frequency AC power cables that operate at 60 Hz and flow through normal sized power cables also flow uniformly through the cables, for instance. DC electricity flows uniformly through the cross-section of a wire, whereas AC electricity, because of its fluctuating behavior, exhibits what is called the “skin effect” in electromagnetic theory; as the frequency of the AC electricity increases, it tends to flow on the outside of the conductor and not uniformly through the inside.

  • @John:
    You are correct. I had it written wrong and I replaced #18.

  • I liked ALL of your 60 popular falsies, but # 58. However,59 out of 60 t’aint bad!
    :o)
    Sue

  • How about… Mammal blood is bright red or scarlet when oxygenated and a darker red when not oxygenated. It is never blue. Veins appear blue through the skin because of Rayleigh scattering, the same effect responsible for the blue sky.

  • How about all lists are 100% accurate?

  • Re: #59 Chiropractic Therapy
    I noticed that the neutrality of the Wikipedia article that was cited has been disputed. So, I’m not sure that there is enough evidence or “medical proof” to say true or false about that claim. Maybe this one should be taken off the list–for now.

  • @Juliana:
    Great addition! Thanks!

    @Tom:
    You’re right… not all lists are accurate. I didn’t write all these points (a guest blogger did), but I did edit them all. I had to work out some kinks, but I do believe each point holds a great deal of truth.

    @P. Greek:
    Penny’s point was not to state that #59 is false, but instead to point out that there is no medical proof to prove it.

  • You guys are hilarious! I love this post. I followed the link for #9 and sent the article to my boyfriend. He thanks you very much!

  • It is amazing how often we accept things as truth based only on rumor or because we heard it once on TV! Great job exposing a lot of myths for what they really are. I love this kind of stuff!

  • Well, i agree with most of the above BUT not with what is said about Astrology.
    Indian Vedic Astrology can really predict your future most of the times.
    The incorrect predictions are more due to human error rather than a flaw in the vedic astrology principals/methods.
    Thanks

  • I need to take the one about yelling into a cell phone to heart. Without even trying I get louder and louder on the phone. It’s a bad (and annoying) habit.

  • Some of these “facts” are subjective, and by passing them off as the real answers to false knowledge, you’re only perpetuating the same kind of behavior you seek to fight.

  • @Fuzzles:

    You’re right. A few of these points are subjective because they have not been scientifically proven one way or the other. The point for these is to first state the fact that the common misconception (i.e. false knowledge) is not true and then to state a counter argument.

  • […] post for our upcoming road trip: 13 Tips for Packing Light with Small Children and Marc featured 60 Popular Pieces of False Knowledge that disputed lots of common […]

  • So, by your own admission, this list is inaccurately title. It should be “common assertions which may or may not be true.”

    This does sort of make it look like stridently claiming these things are false then admitting they aren’t proven false is adding to the sum total of inaccurate information. In essence, you’re saying, “I don’t believe these things, so you shouldn’t either.”

    Also, frankly, saying there’s no proof that something is true isn’t the same as “it’s not true.” It’s simply saying it can’t be supported by facts at present (like the assertions of temperatures in the future).

  • @Orchid:

    You have to remember, this is a guest post. I did my best to verify the accuracy of each point. Most of these points are 100% accurate. However, a few are a bit subjective like #51 and #31, but still hold a great deal of truth and support.

  • I loved the article, but I am curious of your sources, since you only write some sources in each “none-fact”.

    Nice to keep in mind that education isn’t always proportional with knowledge. :-)

  • I agree many of the things on this list are subjective. Saying positive thinking doesn’t do anything to help fight cancer is pessimistic many people who gave up mentally probably wouldn’t have survived it.

  • All astrology is nonsense–because their is no scientific reason that the position of planets should have any effect on human destiny. To say otherwise is to have
    a primitive mystical view of the world–like believing in tooth fairies.

    As Carl Sagan was found of saying: ” The gravitational pull of Mars on a baby is less than that of the obstetrician!” There is no other possible physical effect that the planets could have on you–unless you believe in magic.

    There have been studies to see if “positive thinking” has any effect on cancer survival rates. And, the answer is NONE. It’s science, and if that’s pessimistic, well so be it.

    There is statistical proof that chiropractic treatment doesn’t help medical illness except for bone and joint pain–which also makes scientific sense since the theoretical basis of chiropractic is scientific nonsense.

    As to “time doesn’t heal all psychological wounds”:
    Scientific studies on trauma have shown in animal
    models and human brain scans that trauma induces changes in brain structure. Some of it may be reversible, but not all. There is good evidence that it is due to poisoning by Stress hormones.

    Clinical evidence shows that PTSD can persist–especially without treatment–for an entire lifetime. This was also shown in dogs, as far back as Pavlov.

    ( For electromagnetics junkies):
    Finally, yes, there is a skin effect–that is why
    submarines use low frequency radio.
    They are in a half space ( to first order), and the field is periodic–not DC.
    A proper math analysis in the case of a wire and DC is complicated. For an infinite straight wire, it is easy–use fourier decomposition, the
    Helmholz equation,
    then Bessel expansions–IF it were true that the speed of light were the same in and out of the wire–which it is NOT. Thus, this proof ( That there is NO skin effect for a wire in the periodic field case)–at Wikipeda
    is false. But, it should be doable by a smart masters student in math, and is probably somewhere in the literature. One then needs to do the DC case by Fourier decomposition.

    And, anyway, a real circuit is not an infinite wire but a kind of topological torus–and with the proper boundary condition for Maxwell’s equations ( recall the different speeds of light in an out of the wire) it would be fun ( and nontrivial to analyse
    properly). Sort of a Cambridge Math Tripos question of the old school.

    If I had several days to waste, I would do it myself.
    So, the correct answer would be–I am not really sure.

    Thanks for pointing out the skin effect as relevant.
    I had made the mistake (interesting for psychological reasons related to the title) of accepting the argument for no internal field in the DC case, given
    in Vol II of the Feynman lectures on physics–where he shows that the Poyntng Vector is zero inside the wire. ( look up Poyntng vector in the index). He then states that in the DC case the energy is all outside the wire.

    He made a subtle error–and this is in many books on the field. Anyone here know what it was? Fun!!

    Feynman won a Noble Prize for coinventing Quantum Electrodynamics. But ANYONE can make an error.
    MY error was to not think about his proof carefully
    , in all the years since I read it.

  • One wonders about Homopathy–because the standard argument is that the dilution is so great that no effect could occur. But, if one is allergic to something, only a few molecules can cause a severe reaction. It is interesting that–as far as I know–no one has made this connection.

    Many of the facts taught in school when I was a child in the 1950’s are now known to be false. Anyone remember the twilight zone on Mercury? ( The reason for the name of the TV series was this fact.)
    Anyone recall that bad mothering caused Schizophrenia, Autism, Homosexuality etc. ,? How about: watching TV would destroy your eyes? Or:
    Coffee would stunt your growth. Or: IQ can’t go up?
    Or: Eye Exercises? Or, Eat Spinach like Popeye for iron ( it is mostly not bioavailable).

    Another one: Airplanes fly because of the Bernoulli
    effect–faster air on top has lower pressure.

  • I can’t help but sigh when people say things like Penny just did:
    “All astrology is nonsense–because their is no scientific reason that the position of planets should have any effect on human destiny. ”

    The only certain nonsense is that some humans are so all-fired arrogant that they believe if they can’t demonstrate it, it can’t exist.

  • Elf, it is NOT arrogance—it is the scientific method.
    If one doesn’t use the scientific method, then the world is based on MAGIC. Believing in magic, without proof
    is arrogant.

    IT isn’t that I can’t demonstrate that astrology works–it is that statistical analysis shows that it
    it doesn’t, and that there is NO scientific reason that it should work. Astrology is nonsense–that is the conclusion of science–and that means not just me
    but all SCIENCE.

    Again, the planets are balls of ROCK–they move under the influence of gravity, and there is no possible
    scientific mechanism that could cause the position of the planets at your birth to affect your destiny.

    Astrology is a relic of the prescientific mind set–when people thought the planets were gods.
    That is why Mars and Venus etc., were thought to affect destiny.

    Why not read Carl Sagan on the subject?

    If you like, there is a nice blog called “bad astronomy”
    and believers in astrology can discuss it with the astronomers there. Be prepared, because astronomers know that astrology is no different from believing in
    magic unicorn dust.

    “Certainty is not arrogance, that is the point of mathematics.”–Gauss

  • actually. regular soap does kill germs. It breaks through the fatty membrane of the bacteria cell and thus kills it.

  • engeldwh,
    Yes, but not very well. Many germs survive quite well in regular soap. That is why chemical disinfectants are used at hospital and in
    surgury hand prep.

  • I agree on every single point except the Linux thing and this is the only point where you sound emotionally motivated.
    Maybe you are right if you reduce it to the OS itself but not to the real workflow you have to master when it comes to make your devices work find the drivers or work with others.
    I’ve tried XP Vista several Linux derivates and OSX and nothing beats the simplicity of OSX.

  • Most of this list is just common sense.

  • “Nervous Breakdown” is also know as an anxiety attack which is a sudden and severe manifestation of an anxiety disorder many of which are noted in the DSM, and the etiology of some can be partially stress… say from being overworked.

  • Jens
    I haven’t tried OSX yet.

    But, I like linux a lot better than I like Windows.
    I started when I wanted to do Latex ( a math markup
    language) and I found out that the Windows version worked poorly and had to be expensively updated.
    However, Fedora Linux had an included free version that worked very well using vim–a unix editor.

    Later, I also added Ubuntu–which, once I found out how to run webvideo and audio on–works very well for most things–it is running faster than Windows did and with far fewer problems–n0 adware to remove or check, for example.

    All my devices work just fine with Linux–perhaps because I use an older computer at home, and the
    device drivers are now standard.

    All the software for Linux that I ever need is free. That is very helpful to me. Unix is very powerful and with a few simple command line operations I can do amazing things.

    Simplicity is not that important to me. What is important is working well, stability, and power.
    And learning Unix wasn’t all that hard anyway.
    It’s very logical.

    I will never use Windows again–it is bloated, runs poorly, needs updates that cost money, software is expensive, and it need virus checkers, adware checkers etc. It isn’t very powerful either.

    The Mac system is now built over Unix. I upset the guys at the Apple store when I asked for a free demo
    of Leopard. They showed me all these silly bells and whistles and I finally just said: ” How do you bring up the unix terminal?” ” That is enough for me.”
    ( I had no intention of buying a MAC–my seven year old computer works just fine for me–when I use Linux.)

    In short, I am very happy with my two flavors of Linux.

  • yeah i think positive thinking does boost up your immune system which helps in eliminating the growth of cancer cells which only grows if your immune system is low..

    and Unix systems are simple but you need to be intelligent enough to understand its simplicity..got that qoute from the web..=p

  • by the way…thanks for the post…its great…=)

  • Wade,

    Good suggestion, but I don’t accept it, unless you redefine terms. Here is why.

    Nervous breakdown was
    , historically, a complete physical and emotional collapse–brought on by stress. It was treated by months of rest and then people returned to health, without other treatment. There was no stigma
    for it, at the time, by the way.

    It was associated with a certain physical type –thin,
    and ectomorphic ( which–see below–would be also a result of too much cocaine!) Such people were called Neuroasthenic.

    We just don’t see that anymore–if indeed it ever existed. But, this may be because we have antianxiety drugs.

    The DSM does list anxiety disorders and it is certain that if nervous breakdown existed it would be listed in that classification–but it isn’t there.

    My theory is that there never was such an illness as nervous breakdown, but that there was unrecognised “bipolar” disorder–which led to extreme overwork–and then depressive collapse in a cyclical fashion.

    One certainly sees a lot of historical accounts of successful scientists that involve successive “nervous breakdowns”. These date from the 19th and early 20th century. When re-reading E.T. Bell’s “Men of Mathematics”, I was struck by how common this was–and how when I read these accounts recently, it screamed “bipolar disorder” to me.

    There was also a lot of abuse of stimulant drugs–such as cocaine–which was legal in the 19th century.

    There is no evidence either, that
    overwork stress leads to “acute anxiety syndrome”–in fact, it is believed to arise from underlying
    emotional issues–often from childhood or social relations.
    This reflects clinical practice–and may be just another false belief of
    psychotherapists.

    Moreover “acute anxiety syndrome” requires treatment not just rest.

    Pavlov did show that dogs could be
    conditioned into ” stress collapse” but not by overwork–by being pushed into double binds under torture conditions.

    So perhaps, if one is being TORTURED at work ( by abuse) with double bind situations, one might have some sort of collapse–but overwork alone doesn’t seem to be enough. And, even the above is conjecture–for it isn’t in the DSM–and we are not dogs.

    Soldiers do show “battle fatigue”
    –once known as shell shock–and this is in the DSM, as form of postraumatic stress disorder. But, conditions of battle ( involving horrendous
    scenes of dismemberment etc.) are not the usual conditions of “overwork”.

    So, I guess I don’t accept your hypothesis. Still, it was a very interesting idea.

    Of course, you don’t have to accept my statement either.

    It is the discussion that is important. Rather than accepting things blindly–one must think and discuss them.

    Thanks for making me think!!

  • Jens,
    Ok, I played around more with OSX at my friend’s place, and I still agree with my initial impression of OSX
    ( which is Leopard) from the Apple store demo.

    It’s great if what one wants is a windows like system that has a lot of glitzy eyecandy and can do simple things with a minimum of user learning.

    But, I much prefer the power of straight unix–just give me the unix terminal.

    I don’t like eyecandy and chatty programs. I like command line, control and power.

    And free is great too. Apple computers are very expensive–run the same chips as cheaper computers, and one pays a premium for the Leopard glitz.

    By the way, if one does like OSX Leopard, it has been implemented as a free linux based imitation.
    After all, OSX is based on Unix.
    This was available with days of the release of Leopard.

    Most of the Linux-unix community couldn’t care less.

    In fact, I almost never use the windows imitation “Graphical inteface” in Linux–I find it slow and silly. I just run Linux as unix, from the command line. Less than ten simple commands do all the “graphical” stuff, and better.

    I think putting the “Graphical Inteface” in Linux was an error–more useless bloat.
    Unix is not supposed to be windows.

  • “Alcohol is a great antiseptic for open wounds. – Alcohol is a great disinfectant for intact skin and inanimate, non-living things. Alcohol is not effective or healthy when applied into open wounds. When used on open, exposed tissue, alcohol actually kills some of the human tissue along with the germs. This can drastically delay the healing of larger wounds.”

    This is true to some point, Alcohol is a BACTERIOSTATIC which means that fixes germs and bacteria so it doenst replicate or reproduce but doesn’t kill it. If u want to kill germs and bacteria you need a bactericide like iodine, which is safer on any tissue.

  • Unfortunately, two of these I highly believe are wrong.

    “Fructose is healthier than Sucrose”

    “Fructose” is simply the natural sugar inside of fruits and vegetables, and fructose is much healthier then table sugar, yet the side effects come from people who might eat excess fructose, excess amounts of fructose also causes weight gain, and with the amount of foods on the market with “High Fructose Corn Syrup” I believe it might be to blame, yet if you are simply eating fruit, you will not have a problem like that.

    “Positive thinking (and the placebo effect) helps heal cancer. – Medical treatment is the only way to eliminate cancer cells. Positive thinking does nothing more than help cancer patients mentally prepare for medical treatment. ”

    Medical treatment, is not the only way to kill cancer cells, and positive thinking does deeply effect the growth of cancer, stress has a huge impact on the immune system, and when your immune system is weakened, your body cannot fight the cancer cells as efficiently. Despite many believes, your bodies immune system, can fight and kill cancer cells, and you can cure your cancer with a healthy lifestyle and positive thinking. Cancer feeds itself on many things, one of them is processed sugar, which is another reason why you should eat fructose. Cancer was nearly non-existent 50 years ago, the reason cancer developed is most likely through the higher use of chemicals to cheaply produce food, drug, and cosmetic products.

    Also, herbal medicines do alot of the times work better then drug treatments, but it really varies what the case is, for example, most antidepressant drugs(paxil, prozac, etc) showed no more impact on people mildly depressed then a placebo. They just have a strong effect on very depressed people, yet plenty of other things were shown to have a similar effect, IE bananas increase serotonin levels, and things like that. The herbal alternative, St Johns Wort, was shown to be more effective then most anti depressants, its much cheaper, and it doesn’t cause kids to shoot up their school.

    “There have been studies to see if “positive thinking” has any effect on cancer survival rates. And, the answer is NONE. It’s science, and if that’s pessimistic, well so be it.”

    Studies are great, but alot of the studies, depending on who is performing the studies, have bias, studies can be manipulated, very easily, and it is a known fact that stress depresses the immune system, with a strong immune system, less cancer cells will survive.

    If you want truthful information that is not biased, you should look at a multitude of sources and use common sense.

  • About nr 6: No, the tar does not cause cancer itself, but it makes the more dangerous chemicals stay in your lungs: The radon and polonium is glued to the lung wall with the tar. Even radon from buildings will stay that way and increase the effect. As radon is an alpha-radiant this will cause cellular damage and thus cancer that would not happen from outside the body.

  • #22: Apparently the author does not understand the concept of free market. The producers of oil and those who sell it have the right to price their product at any level the deem fit. The user has the right to or not to buy said product. The laws of a free market and supply/demand dictate that as long as people continue to buy said product at the current rate the the product is priced correctly. As you may notice people are now finding ways to cut back on usage. What will happen is that if the profit of the oil companies is affected negatively they will respond by adjusting their prices as needed to get the max return on their product.

    Do I like the fact it takes over 50 bucks to fill up my Honda Accord? No. And I drive less, and if the prices do rise I will either take public transportation to work, by a motorcycle or ride a bike. If the cost of oil goes back down, then I might buy a 30 foot long SUV that gets 4 miles per gallon. Free Market is all about whether or not the price of the product is what I as a consumer feel is worth spending my resources on. If not I will use my resources where I see fit. Its basic economics, but I know most people are not fortunate enough to take that class in college and are completely oblivious of the concept.

    The Free Market, my friend, is alive and well.

  • Um… #15 chills don’t make you sick…

    It says right there that it shocks the immune system, making it less able to fight off viruses. Seems to me it’s actually the VIRUSES & other BUGS that make you sick… not the chill. Maybe that’s splitting hairs, but so is parsing the terminology that the big bang wasn’t an explosion. That word “explosion” is just a word to help lay people better visualize the process. The Cambrian Explosion, wasn’t technically an explosion, either, but that word is used as a descriptor.

  • About the ‘Chlorine water can damage skin’ holy hell you can say that again, I started swimming alot in chlorined pools recently, and now I have white dry spots all over my skin!

  • @Brandt:
    Your points here are very well stated and completely understood. However, I think Penny was pointing out that speculators (and possibly corrupt governments) are forcing up the cost of oil so that the true market price no longer reflects the true market demand. Yes, people are cutting back, but they still buy gas because they have no other reasonable alternative. True free markets are priced based solely on true demand, without all the fishy unknowns of this current oil market. Nevertheless, your arguments are valid for the most part.

    PS: I’ll let Penny respond to some of the other recent comments.

  • I like how half of these statements don’t have sources. On top of this most of these are not earth shattering concepts at all. Most of the health points revolve around the concept of moderation, which is just plain obvious.

    The only one I kind of disagree with is the point about hard water being healthy. For some reason, the author did not decide to put the word moderation in front of this one. In the area where I live, many patients who have kidney stones can be linked to the tap water they are drinking constantly. The problem with hard water is it contains a lot of calcium. Sure this varies depending on where you live, but seriously, the word moderation should not have been left out of this point.

  • Brandt,
    The free market never existed. It is an abstract simplification invented by Adam Smith. What Marc said is exactly my point.

  • Ben,
    Just because an idea sounds plausible, doesn’t mean it is true. In fact, there have been extensive studies on whether positive thinking can help cancer recovery rates, and they have shown that the answer is no. Studies are better science than anecdotes or
    guesswork based on plausible ideas.

    Does stress depress the immune system? Yes. Does this mean that positive thinking helps cancer recovery–nope. The question is whether the improvement in the immune system is sufficent to kill the cancer cells. The answer is no.

    Can studies be manipulated –YES. But, they are the best tool we have here. And, replication is part of the process.

    As to herbal medicine : Serotonin Uptake inhibitors seem to not work–as determined by many recent studies. The is no evidence that depression results from a deficiency of Serotonin.

    A more recent hypothesis is that
    antidepressants work by aiding the growth of new brain cells—such regrowth is now know to happen in a limited way. Nice idea, as it takes weeks for anti
    depressants to work–something that the Sertonin
    deficiency hypothesis never explained.

    However, there are many classes of antidepressants, and studies have shown that older classes–such as tricyclics and MAO inhibitors do work. And, they work better than St. John’s wort–since studies have shown it doesn’t have more than a placebo effect.

    Yes, there was less cancer fifty years ago–not almost none. That was because of two reasons–one, fewer people survived to the age that cancer becomes common, and two, much cancer was misdiagnosed.
    A recent redo of histology for old Mayo clinic samples showed that many people who were diagnosed with fatal TB actually had cancer.

    There was FAR more chemical pollution fifty years ago, and FAR more than that a hundred years ago.
    Fifty years ago, we had huge use of coal–full of radon and other carcinogens.

    Fructose interferes with Leptin–the hormone that tells us that we are satiated.

  • j,
    I recall many science books and tv shows that showed the big bang as an explosion.
    It only made sense to me that it wasn’t, when I looked at the solution to the Einstein equations and discovered that it was not at all an explosion.
    So you are CORRECT, and it was intended as a metaphor, by Leimatre, the mathematician who first discovered it as a special solution to the Einstein equations–but it widely misunderstood.

    Stefan–YES. THANK YOU. BRILLIANT!

  • drip,
    I like your webquote about Unix.

    When the engineers at Xerox park invented the idea of the mouse, they studied little boys–who they observed liked to play with toy cars, and decided that was basic. It was
    sexist.

    But, in fact, they might have come to a different conclusion had they studied older boys, and even Girls! Because verbal commands are also very natural.

    They might have even studied ….perish the thought–adults!

    Me, I prefer words to pulling a little truck around and pointing little arrows–that is a pain in the neck, and it increases eyestrain, and it is pretty slow, actually.

    Optimal would be a verbal command line interface–which now that we have good verbal interfaces is not that hard to implement.

    Nobody pulls mice around windows on Star Trek–they talk to the computer. This led to a very scene in Star Trek IV–where Scotty on a trip to the
    1980’s thinks the mouse is a ….microphone.

    Of course if one is a gamer–one might want a different interface. I don’t play computer games–except chess.

  • some of these are absolutely true.. but some seem to be personal opinions.. thumbs down. :-)

  • Bob,
    Interesting, because I get Kidney Stones, and my doctors ( and the latest research studies) show that calcium actually suppresses kidney stones–even those made of calcium.
    I was told to drink LOTS of milk. Milk has far more calcium than my local hard water.

    But, I wonder if –as you say, your locals have more stones–and if it is really due to hard water and not
    another factor ( worth a careful statistical study), whether it is the calcium or another mineral in that water that is the issue. Or, perhaps the combination of that mineral and calcium.

    What is healthy for most is often quite unhealthy for special populations–for example: milk is healthy, but not if you are allergic to milk.

    Yes, moderation is important. And kidney stones are interesting because many supposed healthy foods are –in the subpopulation of Oxalate Kidney stone formers–unhealthy. This includes Spinach, and dark green vegetables, and many nuts etc. They must be
    eaten in moderation.

  • Bob,
    I wrote my post rather quickly. It was not an academic research paper–so I didn’t include sources. HOWEVER, one can now run keywords through google and you will find all kinds of sources.

    As to earth shattering, the title wasn’t “Earth Shattering Facts….”.

    For example, you might do a google search on calcium and kidney stones.

    There is a lot of false info in medicine. It becomes very obvious when searching for such things as proper treatment of kidney stones. One gets lots of inconsistent information from various professional medical sites–which is why one should then read the actual research papers –after searching on Medline.

    So my basic point is–don’t trust common ( even common medical) wisdom.
    Commonly believed –even plausible things–are often dead flat wrong.
    Lots of examples of this in the history of medicine.

  • What exactly is the basis for 51? Ever been in a street fight? Have you ever used Karate or “dirty fighting” in fight? Do you have any statistic you could point to to show that people who have taken karate or other self defense classes are less capable at self defense then those who do not? What makes you think Karate is “clean fighting?” Are you talking about Karate as a sport, or Karate as self defense? Were you aware there was a difference?

  • Most of these comments are flawless, until you look more closely. All then come down to using moderation in everything, and there is not just one cause for every condition. There is one main problem: there is no hard and fast rule for anything, really.

  • Chest Copperpot
    June 26th, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    A one sentence explanation for anything is suspicious. Dont you think?

  • Penny, has there ever been any “truths” derived from the scientific method that later were proven to be false by the same method? Do you hold that some phenomena or some “things ” occur or exist that have not yet been proven scientifically? Is there such a thing as a poor scientific explanation? And finally, have you ever had a astrological reading based on an exact time and place of birth. Since it’s nonsense you should do it just for fun. Have someone who really knows you read it with you, then you both can laugh and joke about the foolishness of the nonscientific accurate analysis.

  • Justin,
    As a matter of fact, I have a black belt in Karate, and I have one in jujitsu. I grew up in the South Bronx, and
    that should tell you that I have had plenty of experience with people who have been in serious street fights. And, as a girl from the bad part of the Bronx, I have had my fair share of serious scraps.

    I also used to date a bouncer from a Bronx bar.

    It is the general belief of such people that Karate
    ( THE KIND TAUGHT IN KARATE SCHOOLS) is
    not as useful as dirty fighting.

    By dirty fighting, I mean the sort of automatic stuff that a good bar or street fighter knows without thinking.

    For amusement, consider the defense against knife
    techniques taught in Karate and discuss them with your local street knife fighter. NONE of them really work–a good knife fighter will toss the knife expertly and quickly from hand to hand, will carry more than one knife, and
    can easily leap away from your kicks., and will have at least one extra knife or small ax to throw expertly into you from a distance.

    The gun defences are even more nonsensical–ask a local marine.

    And a good street fighter is very fast. Just as a boxer is a lot faster than the typical Karate student. Few Karate students spend thousands of hours with a speedbag, to get that fast.

    The pretty stuff in Karate is basically useless and dangerous in a real fight–such things as high kicks
    ( above the knee), which are very easy to block and
    put you off balance, and flying kicks–which will likely get you killed.

    A real fight will be over in seconds, often when the other knife you didn’t see, or the gun, or the steel jacketed boots, or the brass knuckles do their job.
    Or when the “innocent” bystander ten feet away behind you tosses that ax from his pocket into your back.

    Life is not a karate class, no siree!

    Is there a Karate not taught in Karate Schools?
    Well, that depends–because Karate is just the generic term for empty hand.

    What I meant, of course, is that people who take courses at the Karate school should not think that they are equipped to deal with a serious–in practice–street fighter.

  • Anarchist,
    Well, yes, things have been shown and disproved by
    science. That is part of THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD.
    But, astrology has been tested by science for centuries and has never shown any validity.

    IT is also in conflict with the basic laws of physics, and to me, that is more important. Planets are just balls of rock–and there is no possible scientific mechanism that they can possibly have to affect your
    destiny–whatever the hell “destiny” is.

    Of course, I have had my reading based on exact time and place of birth–and it came out a scattergram of correct and incorrect stuff. I also
    know the techniques of “cold reading” and wasn’t giving the reader any clues. I could see just how frustrated they were.

    My sister was there when the reading was given, and she was almost beside herself with amusement.

  • OK, I have had my time with this thread. It was fun, but now it is time to move on. I don’t want to spend days and days defending these points. That wasn’t my point in doing the thread. The point was to stimulate others to find MORE examples.

    I am amazed how people are still committed to astrology. The irrational seems to have a life of its own.

    We have been to the moon, and we have probes on Mars–how can anyone think that Mars or the Moon have a mystical effect on human destiny? They are just big rocks.

    I just don’t get it. What is the emotional basis of it?

  • Anarchist,
    In my previous post I made a grammar error, I meant
    “she was” instead of “they were”. It’s a common error in colloquial speech.

    To learn more about “cold reading” and other scams of the “psychic reader, astrologer ” etc., I suggest going to both the Skeptic Magazine and the
    Skeptical Inquirer Magazine. One of them, I forget which it was, sells a nice little book on the techniques.

    I learned about all that, way back in the day, by reading the works of Harry Houdini–who liked to expose frauds.

    One of my acquaintances was very sick and going into the hospital and she went to a recommended astrologer–who told her she was going to die. She was terrified because the astrologer knew so much about her. I asked her where she had parked her car, and figured out that the astrologer had used binoculars to get her license plates and then some web software to find out a lot about her.
    I also explained to her about “cold reading”.

    Needless–to–say, her hospital stay went well, and she is still alive and doing very well. She no longer believes in Astrology.

  • Concerning #12: To get technical, corn-based biofuel is not Biodiesel, it’s ethanol. More often than not Biodiesel is made from either Soy or any type of vegetable/waste oil. Pollution-wise, Biodiesel is 100 times less toxic than diesel and can be drunk out of a cup with no ill side effects. Ethanol is made from left over corn stalks and actual corn itself, that’s why it drives food prices up; plus it can’t really be made from any kind of recycling like Biodiesel can.
    On ethanol: It’s not more expensive, that evaluation was based on flawed math, it barely takes less energy-in then it puts out. And not only does it drive up food prices but it’s also much less fuel efficient than gasoline(Biodiesel is only a few percent less efficient that regular diesel) putting out only 76,000 BTUs per gallon where as gasoline puts out 125,071 BTUs per gallon. This means, of course, lower prices on a gallon of ethanol vs gas, but a larger expenditure of funds over time because you lose a chunk of your fuel efficiency and have to buy more of it.

  • Penny, I have a hard time believing that you are an expert in psychology, astrophysics, and asskicking, but here is my piece. I still hold that the “nervous breakdown” in today’s society is a misnomer for a panic attack, which is nothing more than the sudden, intense manifestation of an anxiety disorder, the etiology of which can be genetic predisposition, neurochemical imbalance, learned traits, fear, and yes, stress. The “big bang” is a hypothesis that has not made the jump to theory because like quantum physics and string theory, astrophysics is like a religion for scientists. We don’t have the technology to figure anything out for sure, we just make shit up to fill in holes in the equations. Why do you think that the scientists at cern are so busy. And who the f*ck carries an axe in their back pocket? There aren’t highly trained street fighters to meet in a bar. It’s ninety-nine times out of one hundred just some drunk asshole picking a fight. yes he may stab you or gouge out an eye, but if you have your head about you from training, you are way ahead of the game and can throw him or punch his lights out before he has a chance to jack. By the way your long winded, well googled answers are not very impressive.

  • Penny is going off the deep end with the length of these comments…

    Cool list though. All common sense, but fun.

  • Actually, I think you’re painting a very detailed psychological image of yourself in this article… Personally I don’t agree in many of your conclusions - they are simply to easy. Closed to fast… And besides that I think, that it has a grain of you in it, that somehow affected your “results”…

    Nice to get to know you, through this wired form of interactive nakedness…

  • Wade,
    The Big bang is a specific solution to the Einstein Field Equations. Try looking in any astrophysics text.
    For good measure, why not read ” The Large Scale Structure of Space Time” By Hawking and Ellis. It’s
    a math book–I hope your PDE and Tensor Analysis etc. are up to snuff.
    As to bars and axes–that depends on the bar.

    As to the Ad Hom arguements, I couldn’t care less–stick to arguing the facts.

    As to Nervous Breakdown–why not read some history of Psychology–it wasn’t a panic attack. Start with the Works of Charcot, Sidis, and William James.

    OFF THE THREAD.

  • Interesting read, but too much opinion and not enough source. It started to get a bit ropey at this bit: “Religious faith alone heals.” When was that claimed as knowledge? (outside of Utah) I’ve never known anyone with an illness to think that going to the church would be better than a doctor. Also, “Herbal medicine is healthier than modern medicine”, that’s not false common knowledge! What kind of people do you associate with?? I would presume that only a very small percentage of people would consider taking St John’s Wort ,or whatever it’s called, instead of chemotherapy. As for the Karate one, what the hell does that even mean? It makes no sense what-so-ever; first the street fighter has a concealed weapon, next he has a couple of axes about his person, finally it’s revealed that our karate guy victim is being flanked by other street fighters who happen to be expert axe throwers too….no offense, but if this really is for an academic paper, you should definately re-evaluate your scholastic method, you’d be thoroughly ripped to shreds in a viva situation.

  • Penny,

    Congratulations on your black belts. I still question the post for a number of reasons. Let me say now though that I regard you as an intelligent person, otherwise I wouldn’t waste my time responding, and I don’t mean to offend.

    You wrote “It is the general belief of these people that. . .” Now, you mentioned the scientific method, in all caps, in your response to anarchist, so I don’t need to tell you that the opinions of guys you used to date, while they may be valuable to you, aren’t the type of hard facts or data that would convince someone of an opposing view. But since we are offering our pointless opinions, I know many former marines and police officers that are black belts and train other officers in karate or variations of it for hand-to-hand combat or using their baton or knight stick. Moving on . . .

    I agree that the “pretty stuff” in Karate might be dangerous and useless, but it’s not all about pretty stuff. You mentioned high kicks. Well, a kick doesn’t have to be high to be effective. It only has to be as high as the opponent’s knee (or groin). Practicing high kicks strengthen muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the leg, so the low kicks are more powerful.

    You wrote about knife disarming techniques. Well, of course an unarmed person is at a disadvantage. Nobody thinks the karate kid would triumph over an armed-to-teeth villain with a gun, two extra concealed knives, and a hidden helper with throwing axes he can throw “expertly.” I can just as easily imagine a scenario with the assailant being a desperate addict, weak, strung-out and low on sleep with little more than a sharpened screwdriver, and karate kid has a tonfa he can use “expertly,” or a knife of his own.

    You wrote “Few Karate students spend thousands of hours with a speedbag, to get that fast.” Well, you are right, and the few that do are just as fast as your boxing friends*. There is nothing wrong or useless about the punching techniques taught in karate. You cannot fault the technique if the practitioners are lazy. Or perhaps you can, being a black belt.

    You wrote about “the sort of automatic stuff that a good bar or street fighter knows without thinking.” Of course there are some people who are naturally talented or “automatically good” fighters. I will never be as good at basketball as Michael Jordon. However, I don’t think I would be worse at basketball if I practiced twice a week. What about doing push ups, practicing punches, working with a heavy bag, drilling to increase one’s speed, reaction time and aim, sparring to improve one’s instinct, and doing kata to improve muscle memory makes someone ill equipped to handle a fight? Not doing enough of it, if anything. But doing these things can only help.

    Finally, I would like address your repeated references to the “kind of Karate taught in schools.” (Sometimes this was done in all caps, as though you were yelling). I am guessing you were referring to my comment about the difference between tournament rules karate or just plain self-defense. I made that distinction because I figured, (although I know now I was incorrect) that your idea of karate was the rigid kind practiced in sparring tournaments. I don’t practice that kind. You should know, especially with a black belt in jujitsu, that there is nothing in traditional japanese martial arts that forbids things like eye-gouging, fishhooks, biting, knees to the groin, chokes, and other “dirty fighting” tricks, as long as they are used in self defense. I haven’t been to every Karate school, but in mine we practice sparring two against one, I have been kneed in some very uncomfortable places, and it does offer weapons training, even though a literal translation may be “open hand.” So, although I won’t don a cape and cowl and rid my city of crime when I earn my black belt, I think it is reasonable to say that I could be a better fighter than someone with no formal training but a strong right hook.

    *It’s true that usually a boxer punches harder and faster than a karateka with the same time spent training, but then again, I forgot most dirty fighters are trained boxers, expert knife fighters, and armed with hidden throwing axes as opposed to being drunk or drugged out jerks who just lost their temper because you were standing too close to the girls they like.

  • People who are in practice as street thug fighters in really bad neighborhoods tend to have quite a lot of practical skills at fighting. If they didn’t they would not have survived and prospered at it.

    My main point was that MOST Karate students are not expecting the kind of uncontrolled, unpredictable
    environment that a real street fighter is used to. For example, extra knives, unexpected friends with weapons, bricks tossed from buildings etc. People who grow up in dangerous slums ( as I did, in the South Bronx) have a very different mind set that the average Karate Student. Dirty fighting doesn’t just mean gouging eyes–it means weapons, hidden guns,
    bricks and later reprisal by a gang of friends. That you learn—if you grow up with it.

    Many dirty fighters are indeed expert boxers, having learned their boxing in the street, in golden gloves training, in the military, or in Prison. Many have also studied the oriental martial arts.

    Some Karate students are a cut above the usual, as are some Karate schools, ( perhaps you are one, in one), but
    my post was written to warn the average middle class type Karate student not to be overconfident.

    As to your experience in bars, all of that very much depends on the bar. Bars in really tough neighborhoods are very different from average bars.

    The sort of dirty fighters I grew up around earned their living by fighting, were members of dangerous street gangs, KILLED people for fun, and were pretty expert at it all. That was life in the South Bronx.

    ( as to Capitals, the English language
    sometimes uses all caps for emphasis, and I don’t really care about some silly
    YELLING convention invented by Usenet.)

    You really seem to need to win this discussion, which you seem to regard as some sort of battle. So, ok
    feel free to assume that you have won. It isn’t important to me to win. I was never in a competition with anyone here.

    I just wanted to clarify my points, so that somebody reading this post doesn’t get killed by overconfidence in their karate training. Based on your answers, it just might be you. You had very little idea of what really goes on, in real street battles in slum
    neighborhoods. Don’t think some lessons in
    fighting two people at once in a dojo is in any way equivalent to growing up in a real slum.

    And, the ax throwing thingy is actually something I saw more than once with my own two eyes. A small ax is a decent concealed weapon–legal to buy in a store.

    In a japanese dojo they may teach eye-gouging
    ( and even judo teaches chokes), but in the slums
    people throw battery acid in your eyes. I have one
    childhood friend who was blinded that way. And, she was an innocent bystander.

    LIfe ain’t a Dojo, no sirree.

    NOW I REALLY AM OFF THE THREAD.

    p.s. I probably saw more deadly violence by the time I was six years old, than most marines ever see. Life in the big city.

  • The only thing I’ve “won” from this thread is knowing to never go to the South Bronx, ever. At this point, I just feel lucky to have never been there. I thought Worcester was bad. Perhaps the planets just aren’t aligned right for that community. That last part was a joke.

  • Penny: Astrology is not about how a piece of rock affects your destiny. To some people that may be so and actually Astrology is many different things to many different people. You can not really classify it down to a certain perspective or belief. You already have a preconceived idea of what astrology is and so this colors your views of it. One way of looking at astrology is not how a planet is influencing your destiny but how is it indicating your destiny alongside your ability to make freewill choices. The reason it can indicate what is going on is because all things are interelated; there is no real cause and effort in anything in this world, only the appearance of so.
    An astrologer who makes lousy predictions or inaccurate descriptions does not make astrology ineffective or give cause to dismiss it; it only shows the lack of skill in the astrologer. Also, you can never prove astrology scientifically because in a broader sense of what astrology relfects it is a higher science than the common science as we know it. Common science can be a great tool for our daily lives in this physical world but it has been used as a way to re-enforce what our physical bodies/world already do to our spirit. And that is give the impression that we are seperate entities from each other and that the physical world is the only reality that their is. Well its actually ironic because this physical world is like a subset of the greater spiritual world/s from which things like astrology emanate; you cannot prove something of the greater from something of the lesser. Also is reference to herbs; it all depends on the context. When you say they are ineffective I knew right away the context you put them in and whatever the research was done with them. That is, from the still pervasive western thinking of treating the symptom rather than the whole. Change the context however and they become very much effective, not in treating the symptom, but together with other important factors, that get ignored like when using a pharmaceutical drug, allow the body to do what it knows how to do, heal itself and maintain that health; if only just given the chance and circumstances.

  • Greg,

    First, I use the word “astrology” as defined in the Oxford English dictionary. You may invent whatever
    definition you please, but nobody can be expected to conform in advance to your invention.

    Second, You speak of “higher science” than standard science–and I have no clue what you are talking about. You also use terms like ” spiritual world”, and “spirit”.

    These are neologisms–they have no meaning in the REAL world.

    I don’t live in a ghost story—I live in reality, which is what science studies, observes, measures and predicts. I am not a spirit–I am a chemical machine, that works based on physical law–and when I die
    (aka, that machines stops functioning) that is the end of me. I have no “Spirit”. Nor do you. “Spirit” is some sort of primitive fantasy to deal with fear of death. I can’t be expected to give advice based on a
    Stone age world view.

    Science doesn’t accept “ghosts in the machinery” or supernatural explanation–and that is why it is a successful approach. That is the POINT OF SCIENCE. ( Though some science types are willing to be polite and pretend otherwise–they would NOT be able to publish a scientific paper if they said in it–” At this point my spirit prayed to the great spirit and the
    chemical changed color”.)

    It is science NOT witchcraft!
    And, it got us to the moon–by equations, not by incantations ( or prayers–if you prefer that neologism).

    As to your comments about “western thinking”–it got us the cures for most of the horrid diseases ( including leprosy, diphtheria, polio, TB, syphilis,
    Black Plague) that have plagued the world for thousands of years. Not bad, for about a hundred years of serious science.

    And, work is progressing–many cancers that used to be death sentences are now controllable with good survival rates, etc. And we are getting better at it.

    //Change the context however and they become very much effective, not in treating the symptom

    The purpose of a drug is to control or cure a disease.
    It is clearly established–by controlled statistical double blind studies– that almost all herbal medicines are not as effective as modern western medicine. When a plant does work, it is analyzed,
    and a more effective medicine is constructed. Aspirin
    is MORE effective than slippery elm bark–because it was chemically improved.

    As to changing context–sometimes one can fix a problem by changing diet or exercise etc., that is ALSO part of western medicine.

    //allow the body to do what it knows how to do, heal itself a

    Often, what it knows how to do is to DIE. Consider Black Plague–easy to cure with a single dose of modern antibiotic–but it killed MILLIONS of people in the middle ages–who were using herbal medicine, and “context changing”.

    Ask someone whose retina was detaching–and was saved from blindness by laser surgery, if they think that the body knows how to heal itself and maintain
    that health. Then ask a type one diabetic teen–who would be dead without insulin shots–if they would prefer to give up on western scientific medicine.

  • Ok, maybe two or three hundred years for modern western medical science–which basically I define as starting with the “MICROSCOPE”.

    No, there are not devils causing this disease, nor
    is it the wrath of gods,nor an evil spell, nor an imbalance of
    mystical chi–it is caused by bacteria.

    World views:
    There is a dividing line between those who think
    ” Planets and destiny, Karma and chi” and those who
    think: Microscope.

    There is another dividing line between those
    think nature is defined by words, and those
    who understand that nature is best described by equations.

    ” All things are connected.”

    ” That’s nice–what is the differential equation of that connection?–and can you give me a falsifiable prediction to several decimal places from it?”

    That is called the Western scientific mind set–and it gave us the computer, electronics and the internet on which we are communicating.

    While the mystics worshiped the sun and contemplated their navels, intoning mantras of magic words–the western world discovered the atomic reaction that powers the stars.
    E=mc^2 is reality.

  • I think had you stopped at 25 or 30 you could still be reasonably within your claim of dealing in knowledge, and some of this information is useful. However, the balance of the list comprises your opinions or your world view.

    I find #32 the most glaring, and odious. Most contemporary eye problems result from improper use of the eyes. The first most logical way to improve your vision is to relearn to use your eyes properly. To dimiss the entire field of natural vision improvement because of problems with one product only reveals close-mindedness or ignorance. And that’s just the beginning, but others have done a good job separating opinions from facts.

  • Penny:

    P - “First, I use the word “astrology” as defined in the Oxford English dictionary. You may invent whatever
    definition you please, but nobody can be expected to conform in advance to your invention.”

    G - This is true that nobody can be expected to conform to how I define it. No one can be expected to conform to an Oxford English dictionary either. Of course no one can conform in advance either, this is why I explained in part how I define astrology for if I didn’t, how else would you know in terms of this dialogue?

    P - “Second, You speak of “higher science” than standard science–and I have no clue what you are talking about. You also use terms like ” spiritual world”, and “spirit”.

    These are neologisms–they have no meaning in the REAL world.”

    G - I use those terms because they are not part of your lexicon of understanding, although it is within your grasp if you are willing and open to it; they are only indicators to that which transcends thinking and reasoning amongst others – so long as you wish to remain in that thinking realm soley you will never understand. They are only neologic to you not myself and neither more valid or invalid. They only have no meaning in your world because you choose not to include it. Meaning is only subjective and hence also the REAL world is different to the observer; The REAL world has no definite boundary that is same for all and your REAL world is not anymore valid than mine, vice versa.

    P - “I don’t live in a ghost story—I live in reality, which is what science studies, observes, measures and predicts.”

    G - You try to discredit my terms by calling them neologisms yet you introduce the term ghost story without qualifying it. Before you go to your Oxford dictionary or quote it the truth of the matter is you were just trying to put in a digg.

    P – “ I am not a spirit–I am a chemical machine, that works based on physical law–and when I die
    (aka, that machines stops functioning) that is the end of me. I have no “Spirit”. “

    G - That’s the nature of the physical body, your sensory experiences cover over your awareness that you are aware which does not need a body to be aware. Its not that you have a spirit it is that you are a spirit – or whatever term you wish to use any term is both appropriate and inadequate since spirit is infinite and to define it which is a finite limits its true nature. You are by choice in a state of denial saying you are only a physical body since if you were you would not bother trying to defend your views in this dialog, not would you care if someone came along and took your life; why would you bother? In 200 years from now your body will be dead anyway so why do you care?

    P – “ Nor do you.”

    G – That’s right. This is because I am a Spirit, I cannot have something I am. I am a Spirit that has a physical body at the moment.

    “Spirit” is some sort of primitive fantasy to deal with fear of death. I can’t be expected to give advice based on a
    Stone age world view.”

    G – Since I have experienced many deaths of different bodies why would I fear the death of this one I am currently in? I don’t recall asking for advice on a subject you haven’t disclosed for that which I am soliciting. Again the truth of the matter when you are using the terms “primitive fantasy” and “Stone age” is nothing but to put me down, discredit me, and make yourself seem superior. That is the function of EGO and it is the EGO which is what fears death. EGO is but the insistence to remain appearing separate and distinct from all others. But that is in the level of relativity and anything relative comes to pass; meaning all things physical or separate come into existence change and die (or goes away). That too will happen your EGO as well as mine.

    P – “Science doesn’t accept “ghosts in the machinery” or supernatural explanation–and that is why it is a successful approach. That is the POINT OF SCIENCE.”

    G – Science actually has no reality in this physical world, it is only a human mental construct; it is nothing more but a different form of religion. As well just as you would have various types of catholic churches and denominations you have different views, branches and beliefs of what science is.

    P – “ ( Though some science types are willing to be polite and pretend otherwise–they would NOT be able to publish a scientific paper if they said in it–” At this point my spirit prayed to the great spirit and the chemical changed color”.) “

    G – Nor would a catholic priest in a catholic church have anyone come or they themselves continue to be allowed to preach in that church if he all of a sudden decided to start preaching the Koran. Your statement has no relevance other than showing you continue to want to denigrate what I am saying. You claim my terms are neologisms yet you create new ones derived from my own “my spirit prayed” having declared you don’t know what I am talking about but yet imply you do saying it has no merit(the term you invented) because it would not be published.

    P - It is science NOT witchcraft!

    G – And apples are not oranges, so?

    P - And, it got us to the moon–by equations, not by incantations ( or prayers–if you prefer that neologism).

    G – Equations can’t do anything because they are not real, they are only constructs and tools of the mind. What about the politics, aspirations(aka spirit), emotions, motives(both hidden and seen). What about the sun shining on the earth that allows us to grow and live in all our different ways, what about all the resources of the planet that allowed us to us. Without all these things in place no science would have gotten us to the moon; we wouldn’t even be here to go in the first place. Where do you think the intelligence to use equations comes from to begin with?

    P - As to your comments about “western thinking”–it got us the cures for most of the horrid diseases ( including leprosy, diphtheria, polio, TB, syphilis,
    Black Plague) that have plagued the world for thousands of years. Not bad, for about a hundred years of serious science.

    G – You assume I think the tools of science are not good. I do not see that. To me it is double edged sword because it is ultimately a creation of the mind for mostly reasoning and common sense(common sense meaning the perceptions only pertaining to that of the physical body senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell). When one allows their spirit to flow into their lives then science becomes a great tool however when spirit is closed off science does not serve well. By the way most of the diseases that so-called plagued the world were only plaguing the western world mainly Europe; and most of these diseases were eradicated by better sanitation. It took science in its first stages to show there are such things as small bugs like viruses that cannot be seen with the eye and that it would be prudent to eradicate their source, ie again better sanitation. However, many indigenous cultures throughout the world did not face diseases like those in western society because they inherently knew (without science) to live in ways that that do not create unsanitary conditions.

    P – And, work is progressing–many cancers that used to be death sentences are now controllable with good survival rates, etc. And we are getting better at it.

    G - Our western society created many of the diseases we aim to eradicate to begin with; and there are already cures that are suppressed from being utilized ; ones that both use science fully, some with little, some with a mix of science.

    P - //Change the context however and they become very much effective, not in treating the symptom

    The purpose of a drug is to control or cure a disease.

    G – I have already alluded to that, and that is misguided because you are only treating the symptom, not the underlying cause. For if you only ever are successful in treating the symptom you run the risk of the cause creating a problem elsewhere. Its like pushing a beach ball down into the water, keeping your hand above one spot will prevent it from coming up there but that doesn’t stop it from popping up elsewhere.

    P - It is clearly established–by controlled statistical double blind studies– that almost all herbal medicines are not as effective as modern western medicine. When a plant does work, it is analyzed,
    and a more effective medicine is constructed. Aspirin is MORE effective than slippery elm bark–because it was chemically improved.

    G – You still didn’t get my point… your still taking it out of context and assuming that slippery elm would be used like one might use aspirin. Your view point is too treat the symptom. If someone has a headache and your only treating the symptom of the headache, then yes aspirin (according to the context of the research you cite) would be more effective than slippery elm. However change the context and aspirin can fail miserably. What if the cause of the headache is because the person is having a difficult time sleeping; well low and behold aspirin does not help people sleep, so while they get immediate relief from the aspirin they have to take more aspirin in the morning because they still didn’t get any sleep. But on the other hand although slippery-elm has is weaker in affecting the headache it also has the ability to help promote the body to sleep; I’ll let you figure out the rest of that one. This is an oversimplified example but only so because you’ve never studied things outside the context of scientific reasoning. Different traditional societies had different models(contexts) for how to use herbs, and although their models where different they shared the common approach of doing things from a wholistic approach which served well. Indiginous natives had theirs, Orientals had theirs like the ying and yang and Indians had theirs with Ayurveda. For example with ayurveda if you have the symptom of a headache, the headache is not treated at all, but used in part in assessing what doshas are imbalanced. Then herbs(or not and in which in the case of a headache may call for a different herb other than slipper-elm) amongst other things are used together to balance the doshas which results the elimination of the symptom (headache in this case). Now if you yourself and the so called researchers who participated in the research you cite had ever done any considerable investigation into applying herbs from a different perspective you would find very different results and conclusions.
    The short sightedness of treating symptoms is you never get at the source or cause. Push a beach ball down in the water in one spot and keeping your hands where they are will prevent it from coming up in that spot but it will surface elsewhere. Treating a symptom well only results in another symptom emerging as something else and so round and round you go. Funny, scientific stats show that over 100,000 people die from prescriptions a year; and this does not included mistakes in diagnosis or harmfull mixing with other drugs, but simply from the unforeseen side-effects of the prescriptions themselves. You don’t get that with herbs and associated modalities. Our bodies are organic and not like a machine. Scientific thinking when used solely or primarily is like a machine. It is done in isolation (it sets up its own environment to justify itself – ie it controls the parameters, excluding or including only the factors it wishes to use; And this is because it cannot include all factors because by its nature does not have the capacity to include all factors). The anology of this is the lab; everything is set up for certain conditions, right?; and the results observed accordingly. Yet what science does is try to take it from the lab to the real world and changing that context changes the results.
    P - As to changing context–sometimes one can fix a problem by changing diet or exercise etc., that is ALSO part of western medicine.

    G – Yes it is part of science but that knowledge existed before science, again science is not just some thing but a construct of peoples minds. It is only that people are beginning to include more into their view of science than what was held before. Things like changing diet, exercise, herbalism, homeopathy, astrology, prayer, mysticism, philosophy, radionics, lifestyle routines, entertainment, career, family, communities , yes science too…all these things can go towards not only alleviating diseases but also eliminating them from arising in the first place.

    P - //allow the body to do what it knows how to do, heal itself a

    Often, what it knows how to do is to DIE.

    G – Actually that is not true, the body only knows how to live, you cannot show the body knows how to DIE. It only dies because it failed to keep on going. Dieing is not something that is done; it is the result of stopping to live, and if what you introduce to the body that is not good for it, it will fail if not strong enough to deal with it. That is not knowing how to die; that is only having limited ability to live.

    P - Consider Black Plague–easy to cure with a single dose of modern antibiotic–but it killed MILLIONS of people in the middle ages–who were using herbal medicine, and “context changing”.

    G – Actually the people of the middle ages where not as you quote “context changing” they were still operating from the mindset of intellect, emotions and body senses primarily. If they had been living from the context of spirit primarily they would not have had to of contended with a massive plague, and would have used herbs and other things much more effectively, rather than treat it like a symptom drug. And further the Black Plague is a poor example because you assume to much about a historical event that may or may not have occurred as published in a contemporary history textbook.

    P - Ask someone whose retina was detaching–and was saved from blindness by laser surgery, if they think that the body knows how to heal itself and maintain
    that health.

    G – I would ask what situation did the body get into that it encountered an influence that was stronger that its ability to maintain the ability to see or develop that ability. And how can you say the laser surgery is responsible for the ability to turn around blindness. It was only a tool in helping the body and conversely it could be a tool in destroying that ability. But what remains is the body knows how to see regardless, if you just let it. After the surgery it is the body maintaining the seeing; blood flowing through capillaries, nutrients being delivered, new cells replacing old ones. No amount of surgery can make a body see with its eyes unless it is participating itself.

    P - Then ask a type one diabetic teen–who would be dead without insulin shots–if they would prefer to give up on western scientific medicine.

    G- If they weren’t living through the context of a western society they wouldn’t be diabetic and need insulin shots to begin with.

  • P - Ok, maybe two or three hundred years for modern western medical science–which basically I define as starting with the “MICROSCOPE”.
    No, there are not devils causing this disease, nor
    is it the wrath of gods,nor an evil spell, nor an imbalance of
    mystical chi–it is caused by bacteria.
    G – What is your definition of devils, gods, evil spells and mystical chi?
    And reference to what disease?
    What bacteria as well? And what is the causing the bacteria to create the disease?
    What is the causative agent to set these things in motion.

    P - World views:
    There is a dividing line between those who think
    ” Planets and destiny, Karma and chi” and those who
    think: Microscope.
    G – Other than your opinion, how is this so( that there is a definite dividing line placed where you indicate);
    P - There is another dividing line between those
    think nature is defined by words, and those
    who understand that nature is best described by equations.
    G – Ummmm…but equations are combinations of words, how else could their ideas be expressed, communicated or utilized?
    P - ” All things are connected.”
    ” That’s nice–what is the differential equation of that connection?
    G – the equation is Infinity. Differential equations cannot be used to describe that which is greater than itself ( Differential equations are but human mental constructs and limited) Differential equations are but the human mind recognizing what is already there; like looking in a selective mirror. There are also different types of differential equations because not all approaches work in all situations.
    P –and can you give me a falsifiable prediction to several decimal places from it?”
    G – the prediction is Infinity…the falsifiable is your denial expressed as:
    0. (n) divided by zero, where n is the number of arguments you put forth against it.
    P - That is called the Western scientific mind set–and it gave us the computer, electronics and the internet on which we are communicating.
    G - It is just the externalization of what already was their internally.
    P - While the mystics worshiped the sun and contemplated their navels, intoning mantras of magic words–the western world discovered the atomic reaction that powers the stars.
    E=mc^2 is reality.
    G – Some think atomic reaction powers stars. It’s not ‘proven’ to be the case, it’s still only an assumption. E = mc^2, the common expression being from that being energy and matter are neither created or destroyed one forms into the other. Well this has been known for ages by so called mystics that ‘worship’ the sun contemplating navels, intoning mantras of magic words…they just didn’t use the language or writing of E = mc^2. If you ever decide to open up to other avenues of knowledge you will see the comparisons and how they are essentially the same.

  • greg.
    //homeopathy, astrology, prayer, mysticism, philosophy, radionics

    If you believe in all these things as useful ( with the exception of philosophy), I could never convince you
    that the scientific method is the way to go. They are all
    BALONEY–all disproved–all crackpot nonsense.
    I do not say that you are a crackpot, only that these ideas are all crackpot ideas.

    That is not about eg0–But, about facts and science.
    I refer you to the magazine “The Skeptic” and the magazine ” The Skeptical Inquirer” for the debunking of these crackpot ideas.

    //
    - If they weren’t living through the context of a western society they wouldn’t be diabetic and need insulin shots to begin with.

    Afraid not. Type I diabetes is a genetic disease. It exists everywhere in the inhabited world, and where
    insulin is not available it is 100 percent fatal.

    // And how can you say the laser surgery is responsible for the ability to turn around blindness.

    I didn’t. I said that it can prevent a certain form of blindness.

    As to herbal and shamanistic medicine–why not ask the hundreds of millions of people who are blind around the world with trachoma? This could have been prevented by a short dose of western, scientific
    medicine.

    //Actually the people of the middle ages where not as you quote “context changing” they were still operating from the mindset of intellect, emotions and body senses primarily. If they had been living from the context of spirit primarily they would not have had to of contended with a massive plague, and would have used herbs and other things much more effectively, rather than treat it like a symptom drug. And further the Black Plague is a poor example because you assume to much about a historical event that may or may not have occurred as published in a contemporary history textbook.

    Blah, blah, blah. Herbs do not cure black plague
    ( which still exists), tetracycline does.

    As to whether the historical event was a what occurred–there you are on better ground–as history is always a reconstruction. However, those people who get black plague today–which is caused by a germ–and do not get western medicine have a
    80 percent death rate. You can check that with the world health organization.

    //Funny, scientific stats show that over 100,000 people die from prescriptions a year; and this does not included mistakes in diagnosis or harmfull mixing with other drugs, but simply from the unforeseen side-effects of the prescriptions themselves. You don’t get that with herbs and associated modalities.

    Sure, but when herbs are strong enough to have medical effect–which is RARELY–they can and do cause death. Consider Ephedra–which causes strokes . Where more people use herbs, more deaths and other morbidity occurs. Not to mention the deaths from herbal treatment when it is ineffective for serious disease.

    //For example with ayurveda if you have the symptom of a headache, the headache is not treated at all, but used in part in assessing what doshas are imbalanced.

    Inbalanced doshas are baloney, a disproved primitive model of the body ( similar to the ancient greek ideas on humors). Their are no doshas, there is no prana, there is no chi–vital forces do not exist.
    There are 0nly atoms–following the laws of physics.

    //Where do you think the intelligence to use equations comes from to begin with?

    It evolved. The brain is the seat of intelligence–as
    people with brain damage clearly shows.

    As to equations–what I actually said was that
    a real understanding of nature occurs when it is
    modeled with equations, and when these give
    precise, falsifiable predictions. I didn’t say that equations were part of nature. I said they were part of the western scientific model–and that is what got us to the moon, rather than praying to it. And, the moon is not a god, or a spirit–it is a big rock.

    Finally:

    I learned quite a lot about the REALITY of non-scientifically advanced cultures when I was in the Peace Core–back in the seventies. I learned that the average primitive person ( even the shamans, and mystics) is extremely unhealthy–in fact, quite sick–with such things as worms, trachoma,Beri-Beri,
    etc. I learned that babies die by the millions for the lack of simple western medicine–from such things as cholera. Watching a baby die from cholera–when a simple and cheap rehydration drink ( like Gatorade) could save their life–and watching the spiritually
    advanced shamans chant their incantations, and give their herbs, while the children died in agony–CURED me of any belief in the non-western, spiritual mindset. Not that I had one, of course.

    And yes, they refused my offer of treatment–because they were afraid of losing their power over the people–Now that is EGO.

  • // If they had been living from the context of spirit primarily they would not have had to of contended with a massive plague.

    Really? The spiritually advanced monks in the monasteries died just as fast as the others. In fact, this was a major factor in discrediting the religious mindset–and a major cause in the scientific revolution.

    Prayers didn’t matter, spirit didn’t matter–but fleas did. Without the microscope they had no idea what was killing them. It was–in fact, often blamed on evil spirits, the devil, and curses.

    It came–over and over–until evolutionary forces selected for a more resistant population–and it killed about one third of the total population of Europe–priests, mystics, shamans, etc. just alike.

  • //Science actually has no reality in this physical world, it is only a human mental construct; it is nothing more but a different form of religion.

    Greater nonsense was never said.

    Science is NOT another form of religion.

  • Good explanations of just how science is not a religion can be found in “A Demon Haunted World” by Carl Sagan, the works of Richard Dawkins, and even better in the works of Thomas Henry Huxley.

    Science is exactly the opposite of a religion—it consists of precise but falsifiable ( i.e. testable) statements, it is not based on the belief in supernatural beings, it is not a finished “revelation”,
    etc.

    ” I have faith.”
    “Keep it, I have calculus.”–Laplace

  • //Some think atomic reaction powers stars. It’s not ‘proven’ to be the case, it’s still only an assumption. E = mc^2, the common expression being from that being energy and matter are neither created or destroyed one forms into the other. Well this has been known for ages by so called mystics that ‘worship’ the sun contemplating navels, intoning mantras of magic words…they just didn’t use the language or writing of E = mc^2. If you ever decide to open up to other avenues of knowledge you will see the comparisons and how they are essentially the same.//

    Atomic energy not only powers stars but the equations involved predict quite nicely the entire evolution of stars–and led to the discovery of such things as neutron stars by math ( Robert Oppenheimer’s paper) BEFORE they were observed.

    Your comments about E=mc^2 show you are on the other side of the divide that I mentioned. E=mc^2 is a quantitative statement about EXACTLY how much energy is in mass. And, this has been measured in such things as antiproton-proton annihilation, and
    nuclear mass defects. IT was not known by mystics,
    or cultures without the modern western science and math.

    Statements about the equivalence of energy and matter in words are not as good a description of nature as a precise equation–which is my point.

    Besides–actually it doesn’t even say that energy is equivalent to mass ( a common misconception), it says that the norm of the M-four vector is an invariant–check “Spacetime Physics” by Wheeler and Taylor.

    In a similar way, Buddhist monks ( The Dancing Wu Li Masters) did NOT know quantum physics –for all their prattle about waves, and matter etc. They didn’t possess the Schrodinger or Dirac equations. That is quantum mechanics.

    Quantum mechanics can predict the change in the spectrum of a hydrogen atom in a magnetic field
    to 12 decimal places of accuracy!

    So much for Om Mani Padme Hum.

  • In the same way, everyone knew that if you drop a pebble it falls to the ground.

    That doesn’t mean that they knew the Newtonian Law of Universal Gravity–which is a precise equation aka the inverse square law F= GMm/R^2.

    Don’t tell me that the pebble falls to the ground–predict how long it will take to the nearest
    thousandth of a second, and then do the measurement.

    That is the power of differential equations.

    Mystics had long known that comets were special
    omens of special events–but they couldn’t predict their motion. ( in fact, they are just objects moving under gravity).

    Edmund Halley used Newton’s equations to say that
    Halley’s comet would return after he died. Some people said–well, yes Mr. Halley, now that you point it out, there a a great comet every 76 years–so what makes your prediction special?

    Halley replied: ” Do you see that statue over there in the courtyard? On ( this precise date, at this precise time) the return of the comet its tail will make an angle of ( this exact number of degrees) with the nose of that statue.

    It was measured, and he was correct to within a tenth of a degree–within his predicted error bounds.

    NOW, that is Science. That is Calculus.

    It ain’t mysticism, or religion.

  • Ok. Enough. I am off of this thread now.
    I have things to do.

    My points are made.

    Also, in the same vein, I am now off the entire discussion on my blog post.

    It was fun.

  • P- //homeopathy, astrology, prayer, mysticism, philosophy, radionics If you believe in all these things as useful ( with the exception of philosophy)
    G – Its not a belief, its based on experience.
    P - I could never convince you that the scientific method is the way to go.
    G – Way to go where?…you said earlier you think your just a chemical mix that will die and then nothing, do why do you bother?
    P - They are all BALONEY–all disproved–all crackpot nonsense.
    G – You can’t prove they are all baloney nor have you shown anything yet that supports that. I’ve seen a lot of so called disproving but upon careful inquiry learned the so called disprovers methods are faulty.
    P - I do not say that you are a crackpot, only that these ideas are all crackpot ideas. That is not about eg0–But, about facts and science.
    G – You said I believe in these things because I was afraid of death. I did not say the physical body does not die and you don’t need science to know that. So that leaves us with my comment about the ego. If everything is just facts and science then what is your scientific description of fear – the term you used. You continually twist the conversation around without considering what you really are saying. Why do you consider it valid to use the term fear and its not valid for me to use the term ego. You did it again as I pointed out. Your arguments are not based on facts and science your arguments are based on your opinion and the assertion that your opinions are facts and science and the final word. Just because you make the decree doesn’t make it so ; it’s also not very scientific to do so.

    P - I refer you to the magazine “The Skeptic” and the magazine ” The Skeptical Inquirer” for the debunking of these crackpot ideas.
    G – And since when do such magazines become the authority? The only debunking is in the mind of the debunker.
    P - // - If they weren’t living through the context of a western society they wouldn’t be diabetic and need insulin shots to begin with.
    Afraid not. Type I diabetes is a genetic disease. It exists everywhere in the inhabited world, and where
    insulin is not available it is 100 percent fatal.
    G – You don’t have to be afraid. But why was it genetic. It was genetic because the western parents running around doing things from the ‘western way’ both chose an inappropriate partner and an inappropriate time to conceive. Look at all the siblings in the world; same genes from the same parents but all so different in personalities and life outcomes. (hint – astrology).
    P - // And how can you say the laser surgery is responsible for the ability to turn around blindness.
    I didn’t. I said that it can prevent a certain form of blindness.
    G - Penny, your not attempting to understand what I am saying, you just took what I said out of context, go back and read – understanding that even if there was a surgery that could replace limbs; what the surgery does or does not do is not the point. You were saying the body only knows how to die.
    P - Blah, blah, blah. Herbs do not cure black plague
    ( which still exists), tetracycline does.
    G – Again, your showing your colors Penny; blah blah blah? you really don’t want to see things differently even if its valid. If you re-read again, and carefully, you’ll see I did not say herbs would cure balck plague nor did I imply that. I put forth an entirely different concept which is something I have originally been echoing in different ways from the start but either you don’t want too or cannot grasp it. I personally believe it is a bit of both but the ability to not grasp it is because your life is under stress that disallows the chatter of your mind to settle and quiet down long enough to take in a new point of view that contradicts your beliefs.
    P - As to whether the historical event was a what occurred–there you are on better ground–as history is always a reconstruction. However, those people who get black plague today–which is caused by a germ–and do not get western medicine have a
    80 percent death rate. You can check that with the world health organization.
    G – Yeah but the world health organization can’t tell you why the person got into contact with the germ to begin with.
    P - Sure, but when herbs are strong enough to have medical effect–which is RARELY–they can and do cause death.
    G – Again, you don’t read what people are saying unless you are in agreement. I just gave you an explanation about how you use herbs and the context and your back to treating herbs being used in a western frameset (e.g. treat the symptom). That’s why many of these so called sceptic magazines are bogus themselves; they selective look at what they only want to look at, just like your doing now. LOL.
    P - Consider Ephedra–which causes strokes.
    G – Ephedra doesn’t cause strokes; it depends how something is used and the context. The same goes for any pharmaceutical drug; they don’t cause the 100,000 deaths I referred too It’s the context in which they are used and how they are used. You know very well someone could drown in a few inches of water, yet we couldn’t live physically without it.
    P - Where more people use herbs, more deaths and other morbidity occurs. Not to mention the deaths from herbal treatment when it is ineffective for serious disease.
    G – That’s not true. More people are starting to you them and its been going on for years. Especially up here in Toronto and the country as a whole. And people haven’t and will not suffer the extent that they would compared to pharmaceuticals. And because the use is rising Bill-51 is being introduced into the government to put herbs in the same category as drugs plus the ability to do things like warrantless search, seizure and charges on whims such as giving someone else a herb. You only have to read the details of such legislation like I have to see how alternative methods of healing are becoming a big threat to the pharmaceutical industry that there is this need for such legislation that could be enforced if they feel they are losing it(big business/and banks that make their money from it).
    P - //For example with ayurveda if you have the symptom of a headache, the headache is not treated at all, but used in part in assessing what doshas are imbalanced.
    Inbalanced doshas are baloney, a disproved primitive model of the body
    G – Penny your really looking yourself look bad with that one. I have studied and used Ayurveda for many years to great benefit and you say its balony?. You have never studied or used it and so you don’t know and it has never been disproved, that is an obvious remark of f the cuff; You’ve been saying these sorts of things a number of times(“its been disproven type of argurment”) You are out right lying. I’ll take that back if you can show me the so called ‘its been disproven’ research.

    P - ( similar to the ancient greek ideas on humors). Their are no doshas, there is no prana, there is no chi–vital forces do not exist.
    G – That’s because you refuse to look at things differently. Your insistence that all things are only this physical world colors your perception to new ideas and concepts. You just proved that with your statement by assuming doshas, prana, chi are things. Of course they are not things physical and so can be proven to be to be non-existent. Voila!, you’ve just validated what you’ve been saying all along not by proof but because of your refusal to look at things differently.

    P - There are 0nly atoms–following the laws of physics.
    G – That is only partially true. Atoms are not real things but the language of science that forms part of models; that’s what doshas, humors, chi, prana and the like are (models of context). There is no such thing as an electron flying around in orbit around a nucleous; that is only a model as an aid in application. There is no electron clouds where the electrons can be either a wave or particle depending on how you look or observe it; its just a model. And these models can be useful because they can be applied to some benefit; just the same with doshas, humors, chi or prana. But you can never prove atoms exists or anything else for that matter; including all that I have put forth. You can’t prove anything at all. You can prove to your satisfaction; but not abosolutely.
    P - //Where do you think the intelligence to use equations comes from to begin with?
    It evolved. The brain is the seat of intelligence–as
    people with brain damage clearly shows.
    G – How do you know its not the brain as only being a conduit for expressing intelligence. If the brain is damaged, all that means is it no longer can channel or express intelligence. How do you know intelligence is not inherent throughout all things and that the different physical forms of objects in this physical world are but conduits for expressing intelligence in different ways and degrees. You can’t prove the brain is what produces the intelligence. You say it evolved, evolved from what? According to your views you say this world is just physical objects(basically a chemical soup) but intelligence is not physical so how can it just evolve from the physical if its not physical itself? How can you not recognize intelligence if you are not intelligent to begin with?
    P - As to equations–what I actually said was that
    a real understanding of nature occurs when it is
    modeled with equations, and when these give
    precise, falsifiable predictions. I didn’t say that equations were part of nature. I said they were part of the western scientific model–and that is what got us to the moon,
    G – You are contradicting yourself here. If you can make predictions of what goes on in nature through your scientific models then nature is to some degree following those principals; if they didn’t your predictions would fail.
    P - rather than praying to it. And, the moon is not a god, or a spirit–it is a big rock.
    G – The physical moon is a big rock, but the god-moon or spirit-moon are those things as well and so long as you choose to remain primarily focused on the physical plane of life that’s all you will see, and this is not to say you should do otherwise because when a soul chooses a physical life that will cloud over and hide them from the spirit worlds they have the opportunity to have experiences that could not be had otherwise.
    P - Finally:
    I learned quite a lot about the REALITY
    G – The only thing you have learned in this lifetime is from the perspective of physical REALITY primarily; this is what you have chosen. You have only demonstrated your insistence that physical Reality is the only reality so whatever you have learned only applies to that realm for the most part.
    P - of non-scientifically advanced cultures when I was in the Peace Core–back in the seventies.
    G – There are no advanced cultures scientifically or otherwise on this planet at the moment.
    P - I learned that the average primitive person ( even the shamans, and mystics) is extremely unhealthy–in fact, quite sick–with such things as worms, trachoma,Beri-Beri,
    etc.
    G – If they were advanced you wouldn’t have seen these things.
    P - I learned that babies die by the millions for the lack of simple western medicine–from such things as cholera. Watching a baby die from cholera–when a simple and cheap rehydration drink ( like Gatorade) could save their life–and watching the spiritually
    advanced shamans chant their incantations, and give their herbs, while the children died in agony–CURED me of any belief in the non-western, spiritual mindset. Not that I had one, of course.
    G – yeah you never had one…so wouldn’t have been able to recognize it if you saw it at the time…which means do really don’t know if that shaman was advanced or not. In addition to your previous comments I doubt the picture you paint from your experiences is less fact than colored by what you only wanted to see. Many people die in agony here the west daily too. Many of them here in the west live in agony without the relief of death too. My relatives husband has been in agony for 10 years now, the system keeps feeding him pills and putting him through numerous surgeries over the years; his very own so called pain killers agonizes him. And even drugs aside you just have too look(and by your own admission – you won’t be able to see this) of most western people are but walking zombies, they have no life, because they have been cut off from their spirit and are not able to live by their spirit; the structure of our society doesn’t allow it, it goes against the grain. Mind you there are many who have manage to break from all that but as generalizing it is true most people are really nothing but walking zombies even the intellectually intelligent ones! Of course there’s a purpose for all that but that depends on the individual.
    P - And yes, they refused my offer of treatment–because they were afraid of losing their power over the people–Now that is EGO.
    G - So you saying you were stopped from saving a life with Gatorade? How do you know it was cholera? How do you know your Gatorade would have saved that life?
    How do you know it was not meant to be? If, as according to your beliefs that we are just chemical soup, why do you care if another lives or not? Why were you offended that you offer for help was refused? And yes if that was the reason for being refused for help (losing control over the people) then yes its EGO big time and not a very advanced culture as you claimed it to be.

    P - // If they had been living from the context of spirit primarily they would not have had to of contended with a massive plague.
    Really? The spiritually advanced monks in the monasteries died just as fast as the others. In fact, this was a major factor in discrediting the religious mindset–and a major cause in the scientific revolution.
    G – They may have been spiritually advanced but they lived in an environment that had no spiritual context either eg. planet earth.
    P - Prayers didn’t matter, spirit didn’t matter–but fleas did. Without the microscope they had no idea what was killing them. It was–in fact, often blamed on evil spirits, the devil, and curses.
    G – How do you know prayers or spirit didn’t matter; maybe to you, but your only focused on physical survival. To others physical survival is not always a primary objective. Many spiritual souls pass through negative situations including death as a way to test their spiritual capacity to not become trapped and enslaved to a physical existence only and forget their spiritual nature. Negative experiences can be great catalysts for growth although for the most part it is not done from a conscious personality. On the other hand testing ones spiritual capacity can be the opposite in the triumph of having lived life free from troubles or overcoming potential troubles like good health and what was suggested in reference to the plague. So you really can’t pin it down, which is what your trying to do. That is why you are so focused with the ‘scientific way’ you’re the one who is very afraid because you want to science to pin it down, solve and insulate you from any potential harm. That is why science developed, it was out of fear and that fear was there because there was no spirit connection and with no spirit connection the all to obvious death of what they only know, a physical body that dies.
    P - It came–over and over–until evolutionary forces selected
    G – And what caused it to come – over and over- and why?
    P - for a more resistant population–and it killed about one third of the total population of Europe–priests, mystics, shamans, etc. just alike.
    • penny
    July 11th, 2008 at 9:56 pm
    //Science actually has no reality in this physical world, it is only a human mental construct; it is nothing more but a different form of religion.
    Greater nonsense was never said.
    Science is NOT another form of religion.
    P - Good explanations of just how science is not a religion can be found in “A Demon Haunted World” by Carl Sagan, the works of Richard Dawkins, and even better in the works of Thomas Henry Huxley.
    Science is exactly the opposite of a religion—it consists of precise but falsifiable ( i.e. testable) statements, it is not based on the belief in supernatural beings, it is not a finished “revelation”,
    etc.
    ” I have faith.”
    “Keep it, I have calculus.”–Laplace
    G - All that shows is that it is a different type of religion. People still follow it dogmatically especially the belief that matters can be testable and proved. The truth is that nothing can be proven absolutely, it only ever remains a belief, science, religion or otherwise ( hey yeah including me). These Sagans, Dawkins and Huxleys are nothing but scientific apostles. The whole scientific paradigm is but self-circular loop just like religion; and that is not say neither can be useful, its just that they are not absolute.

    P - //Some think atomic reaction powers stars. It’s not ‘proven’ to be the case, it’s still only an assumption. E = mc^2, the common expression being from that being energy and matter are neither created or destroyed one forms into the other. Well this has been known for ages by so called mystics that ‘worship’ the sun contemplating navels, intoning mantras of magic words…they just didn’t use the language or writing of E = mc^2. If you ever decide to open up to other avenues of knowledge you will see the comparisons and how they are essentially the same.//
    Atomic energy not only powers stars but the equations involved predict quite nicely the entire evolution of stars
    G – these things have not been predicted , the science as we know it has only been around for a few hundred years, no scientist has ever observed the life cycle of a star let along countless numbers of them.
    P - –and led to the discovery of such things as neutron stars by math ( Robert Oppenheimer’s paper) BEFORE they were observed.
    G – But that doesn’t mean atomic energy powers stars. Science doesn’t even know what atoms are let alone atomic energy. They are only mental constructs used as tools to understand the physical world, they are not absolutes. Science has to continually revise itself because something always comes along that breaks the theory. It some cases the predictions work, in others it does not.
    P - Your comments about E=mc^2 show you are on the other side of the divide that I mentioned. E=mc^2 is a quantitative statement about EXACTLY how much energy is in mass.
    G – Oh yeah …tell that to Einstein who first conceived of E=mv^2 by day dreaming and who felt imagination was more important than formulas. Which is what I’ve been intending to get across from the start. Without spirit coming in through the physical science will perish in its capacity to provide benefit, however if spirit does come through more science will flourish not only in its discoveries but in its application to benefit more people. After all science is not a thing it is a human creation, you can’t just take a walk down the street or in woods and find this science thing somewhere. It is only the result of a human mind, however much that human or group of humans choose to remain solely in the thinking chatter of the mind or choose to allow their awareness that they are aware to also perculate up into their thoughts will make the difference in science.
    P - And, this has been measured in such things as antiproton-proton annihilation, and
    nuclear mass defects. IT was not known by mystics,
    or cultures without the modern western science and math.
    G – I’m only on the other side of the fence, but it’s a fence you created, just like people in science have created antiproton – proton ways of looking at things. But its not the only way of looking at things, and which I stated before. So the the mystics in the pass and today and myself already know these things, just not in the way science does.
    P - Statements about the equivalence of energy and matter in words are not as good a description of nature as a precise equation–which is my point.
    Besides–actually it doesn’t even say that energy is equivalent to mass ( a common misconception), it says that the norm of the M-four vector is an invariant–check “Spacetime Physics” by Wheeler and Taylor.
    G - check out what I said ….energy and mass are neither created nor destroyed, one forms into the other….I did not say they are equal, no misconception.
    P - In a similar way, Buddhist monks ( The Dancing Wu Li Masters) did NOT know quantum physics –for all their prattle about waves, and matter etc. They didn’t possess the Schrodinger or Dirac equations. That is quantum mechanics.
    Quantum mechanics can predict the change in the spectrum of a hydrogen atom in a magnetic field
    to 12 decimal places of accuracy!
    So much for Om Mani Padme Hum.
    G - so much for that of being of any value to a Buddhist monk.
    P - In the same way, everyone knew that if you drop a pebble it falls to the ground.
    That doesn’t mean that they knew the Newtonian Law of Universal Gravity–which is a precise equation aka the inverse square law F= GMm/R^2.
    Don’t tell me that the pebble falls to the ground–predict how long it will take to the nearest
    thousandth of a second, and then do the measurement.
    That is the power of differential equations.
    G – Ummm… F = GMm/R^2 is not a differential equation. You cite many scientific theories and authors. Its seems you have given thought and read many scientific papers and books at the same time really not understanding them fully enough to cite them for the purpose of supporting your arguments. You use many examples that sound good but have little connection to your point trying to be made; that’s poor logic and reasoning and it lacks critical thought; very unscientific.
    The formula you cite doesn’t predict or have any power in telling me why that is important to make that measurement.
    P - Mystics had long known that comets were special
    omens of special events–but they couldn’t predict their motion. ( in fact, they are just objects moving under gravity).
    G – And the scientists or followers who believe in only this physical world continue to cycle through lifetime after lifetime in the physical realms until they tire of it for something else; all the while the so-called mystics have moved on to other things without the aid of a single scientific equation.
    And actually its not proven comets move under gravity nor stars powered by atomic energy; it is quit possible and there is a strong body of evidence according to scientific methods that such phenonema are governed by electrical principles.
    P - Edmund Halley used Newton’s equations to say that
    Halley’s comet would return after he died. Some people said–well, yes Mr. Halley, now that you point it out, there a a great comet every 76 years–so what makes your prediction special?
    Halley replied: ” Do you see that statue over there in the courtyard? On ( this precise date, at this precise time) the return of the comet its tail will make an angle of ( this exact number of degrees) with the nose of that statue.
    It was measured, and he was correct to within a tenth of a degree–within his predicted error bounds.
    NOW, that is Science. That is Calculus.
    It ain’t mysticism, or religion.
    G – But Halley still didn’t answer the question…why is that so special?

  • One last statement:
    //That is the power of differential equations.
    G – Ummm… F = GMm/R^2 is not a differential equation.

    No, it isn’t. It the right hand side in the differential equation of motion
    dmv/dt= F ( Newton’s equation).

    This is part of freshman physics,
    ( or even high school calculus)
    as is the solution ( write in polar coordinates, use new variable 1/r etc. Check a good High School Calculus book–eg., the old classic by Thomas.

    // Atoms are not real.
    It is not proven that stars are powered by nuclear energy.
    It is not proven that comets move under the influence of gravity…..

    You are hopelessly wrong here.

    // Other incoherent nonsense.

    I have run out energy.

    I really am out of here now.

  • P - **************
    One last statement:
    //That is the power of differential equations.
    G – Ummm… F = GMm/R^2 is not a differential equation.
    No, it isn’t. It the right hand side in the differential equation of motion
    dmv/dt= F ( Newton’s equation).
    This is part of freshman physics,
    ( or even high school calculus)
    as is the solution ( write in polar coordinates, use new variable 1/r etc. Check a good High School Calculus book–eg., the old classic by Thomas.
    G - ***************
    Why would I check out such a book; I’ve used that formula before that’s why I knew it wasn’t a differential equation and that’s why I pointed out your mistake; that was the point.
    P ***************************
    // Atoms are not real.
    It is not proven that stars are powered by nuclear energy.
    It is not proven that comets move under the influence of gravity…..
    You are hopelessly wrong here.
    G ***************************
    Haha to you Penny, you included the following quote in an earlier post – “” I have faith.”
    “Keep it, I have calculus.”–Laplace
    But here you are using terms like ‘hopelessly’ implying you have no hope in me to accept your view that it is only about science and all else is rubbish. Well Penny the term hopelessly is in the same category as faith and on the same side of the fence( a line that you drew) which you designated me to belonging; what’s the matter things got a little too hot on your side? Or maybe you’ve come over to show me the scientific formula for ‘Hopelessly’? 
    And I am not wrong about the atom comment I made, atoms are only models to understand how to look at things. Half of whatever you observe is shaped by the tool you use to observe the object being observed. The only reason we both see a tree as a tree and come to an agreement about what it looks like is because we both look at it with similar instruments. If you had eyes like a bee and me a spider we would see different things.
    P ********************
    // other incoherent nonsense.
    G *****************
    Bet you if both our minds were connected to separate EEG machines I could change my brainwaves patterns that show much more coherence than yours; yes I can do it. You have a formula you could use for yourself to do the same? Nope…didn’t think so.
    P *******************
    I have run out energy.
    G ******************
    Try meditating or something similar…it’ll come back…or maybe a formula will do the trick? 
    P ***********************
    I really am out of here now.

  • G
    //Why would I check out such a book; I’ve used that formula before that’s why I knew it wasn’t a differential equation and that’s why I pointed out your mistake; that was the point.

    P/
    I made no mistake.
    If you go back and read my post, you will see that I never said that
    F=GmM?r^2 was a differential equation.

    I mentioned it as Newton’s law of Universal Gravity,
    and then mentioned Newton’s differential equations.

    Moreover, if you knew how to use Newton’s differential equation, you wouldn’t have made your comment. The formula is not the differential equation, but GMm/r^2 is the right hand side of the equation of motion. It’s high school stuff, and you clearly don’t know it.

    Atoms are not a concept. Matter is made of Atoms, and we can see that from field ion microscopy. YOU are made out of atoms.

    One last thing, I do know how to use biofeedback to control my brainwaves, and other autonomic functions. I learned it in undergraduate school.
    That too is part of Western Science.

    As to my comments on “hopeless”– since you seem to believe that gravity doesn’t pull comets, that
    atoms are not real, that stars are not powered by atomic energy–I meant that it is clearly a waste of my time to try to explain stuff to you.

    By lack of energy, I was being polite–I meant, Lack
    of Patience with proud ignorance.

    AND, no it is not symmetric–because “God Moon,
    and Spirit Moon” are nonsense, and atoms, gravity,
    and atomic energy are REAL.

    Where is everyone else? Surely, someone else is willing to argue for the western, scientific view?

    BYE

  • P ***********************************
    G
    //Why would I check out such a book; I’ve used that formula before that’s why I knew it wasn’t a differential equation and that’s why I pointed out your mistake; that was the point.
    P/
    I made no mistake.
    If you go back and read my post, you will see that I never said that
    F=GmM?r^2 was a differential equation.
    I mentioned it as Newton’s law of Universal Gravity,
    and then mentioned Newton’s differential equations.
    G **************************************
    Yeah you mentioned the differential equations alright but you mentioned it in reference to THAT formula; why else would you have mentioned it otherwise? Just to make a comment off the wall to make your argument seem impressive? It’s either one or the other, or is there another excuse you’re going to create?
    P ***************************************
    Moreover, if you knew how to use Newton’s differential equation, you wouldn’t have made your comment.
    G *******************************
    Since when does my ability to do or not to do something have anything to do with your attempts to backtrack out of what you say?
    P ********************************
    The formula is not the differential equation, but GMm/r^2 is the right hand side of the equation of motion. It’s high school stuff, and you clearly don’t know it.
    G ********************************
    Oh…your so much brighter than me huh? Well along your same line of thinking with the very same formula you originally wrote…you know what? The “F” is on the left side of that formula…tada!!! …that’s not high school…that’s not even kindergarden; so why are you mentioning it? Not only that now you are saying it is the equation of motion when originally you said it was the Newtonian Law of Universal Gravity….. and here is your original quote:
    ** P - In the same way, everyone knew that if you drop a pebble it falls to the ground.
    That doesn’t mean that they knew the Newtonian Law of Universal Gravity–which is a precise equation aka the inverse square law F= GMm/R^2.
    Don’t tell me that the pebble falls to the ground–predict how long it will take to the nearest
    thousandth of a second, and then do the measurement.
    That is the power of differential equations. **
    P ***********************************************
    Atoms are not a concept. Matter is made of Atoms, and we can see that from field ion microscopy.
    G **********************************************
    But the instrument of ion microscopy is half of what shapes the image that you see with your eyes which are but another instrument which shapes the image your brain records which shapes the perceptions your individual soul is aware of which is what YOU are CONSCIOUS of. Replace that instrument of ion microcscopy and look at those so called atoms through a tube filled with Jack Daniels, and what do you see? A universe filled with what appears to be amber liquid. Not very useful I would say but it illustrates my point; which you still are not getting because you are having a hard time accepting that things are not as solid nor precise as you make them out to be and that there are other things no less useful nor any less valid than scientific formulas.
    P ***********************************
    YOU are made out of atoms.
    G - *********************************
    I am an eternal soul moving in part in a human body which has other human bodies moving around it calling those bodies to be made up of things called atoms from their created religion of science( and not a bad religion if I might say, just overated)
    P ************************************
    One last thing, I do know how to use biofeedback to control my brainwaves, and other autonomic functions.
    G *********************************************
    I didn’t say biofeedback. When I said have our brains hooked up to an EEG machine and change those readings I didn’t imply biofeedback. To clarify I could hook my brain up to an EEG and just make its readings output what indicates greater coherence better than you without any reference to the machine whatsoever or any feedback mechanism at all; and as a challenge to you. Not that either one of us has the money or time but it would be fun.
    P ***********************************************
    I learned it in undergraduate school.
    That too is part of Western Science.
    G *************************
    Well good…and so?
    P****************************
    As to my comments on “hopeless”– since you seem to believe that gravity doesn’t pull comets, that
    atoms are not real, that stars are not powered by atomic energy–I meant that it is clearly a waste of my time to try to explain stuff to you.
    G ***********************************
    I didn’t say I don’t believe gravity doesn’t pull comets, I said it has never been proven; it’s because you for the most part only see things as black or white and its hard for you to accept the in betweens and the maybes. You need your world to be ordered and all understood to feel safe, just like what a religion would do. But the universe and life is also unsafe and chaotic, and the universe is also both sides transcended(for lack of a better word or words) because it is beyond the scope of understanding or being explainable yet it can be paradoxically explained through many different avenues of expression like science, religion, philosophy and so on…but your not there yet in your awareness Penny for such a comprehension , your mind is still to full of arguments and perceptions to see a greater picture of things. But maybe you are, only you can see that yourself.
    Why do you consider it a waste of time? You consider yourself just to be a chemical soup mixture that’s going to die and then nothing. If that was the case you wouldn’t have bothered to participate in this dialog to begin with.
    P **********************************************
    By lack of energy, I was being polite–I meant, Lack
    of Patience with proud ignorance.
    G ******************************
    Why lack of patience? What do you need patience for if you consider the both of us as to being just a blob of chemicals that are going to die anyway? Why would you need to explain something that, to you, is just a blob of chemicals? Are you trying to convert my views of the world? Sounds like evangelical activity to me.
    P *********************************
    AND, no it is not symmetric–because “God Moon,
    and Spirit Moon” are nonsense, and atoms, gravity,
    and atomic energy are REAL.
    G ********************************
    What’s not symmetric…I don’t recall either one of us using that term……..other than your opinion what’s the point?
    REAL what?

  • Greg, Penny for your world views you are both right since you two grew up in different ways and so for you to say that this is what works and i put my complete faith behind it is your truth, but dont let your inability to consider other things that might work or not false before you do all experiments on them. For instance keeping the patient calm is actually good for them because then they are not stressed out which is shown to be detrimental to recovery so whatever helps them stay calm is good for them to have a better chance at recovery. Also someones world view is someones world view they are not right or wrong they simply are how you see the world and yes there are some who believe in expanding what we understand about our world for that is the basis of science to expand what we know about our world and if used right will do so but some make it into a religion ad yes science has proven that there are some real pyschic’s out there i.e. slyvia brown who has been scientifically proven to be a psychic. Oh and heres my world view for you to accept or not; “There is far more in heaven and earth then in your philosophy Horatio” But the point I make is that is there any point of forcing someone to change their world view to yours by force or let them see your point of view and then decide if they want to see that as their truth as well? Or will you make the mistake that severall men(and women) have made in our history to force a change on someone and then the people they forced theitr views on will utterly repulse the change wether the first person was right or wrong. Any way I’m sorry if my main idea here jumped around and seems scattered but these thoughts came to me as i wrote this and I may not be perfect at writing but not trying is paramount to ending of all things for me. I try my best for that is all I can do and you can sit here and debate these points for eternity or go and do something about it. Because rome wasn’t built in a day nor was it built by one man but many people who just wanted things to be better then in the past and yes some of their ideas were wrong but some were right and we are still using science to help us figure out how they moved all those heavy rocks to where they are today.

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  • Technically, #15 is wrong. The chill is not MAKING you ill, but it is making you more susceptible to getting ill.

  • Winning an argument online is like winning the special Olympics…. even if you win your still retarted

  • engeldwh was right, and so are you about the soap. However, when it comes to every day uses antibacterial soaps should not be used. While they do clean more bacteria off, a solid stream of water and plain soap will work just find for household use. Medical uses and hospitals use antibacterial because they are dealing with patients whose immune systems are not capable of handling the germs encountered everyday.
    Not only are they unnecessary for every day use, but antibacterial soaps have ingredients in them that are actually making the bacteria you are trying to clean off stronger. Flushing triclosan and other antibacterials into our sewer systems will end up creating super bugs which we will eventually not be able to fend off. If you have no immune irregularities, I urge you to use regular soap to prevent further growth of super bug strains.
    Here is an interesting scholarly article for you to enjoy about the subject.
    http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/biology/b103/f01/web3/bond.html

  • Number 45 is incorrect. Numerous and repeated studies have shown that Asians living in the U.S. score one to two standard deviations higher than whites living in the U.S. on cognitive ability tests.

  • This is a great list, and I agree with quite a lot, but I have a few notes:

    #7: The DSM-IV is a hob-jobbed compendium of both legitimate and quack science. It classifies sex without orgasm as “deviant”, which results from the influence of the Catholic church. Its contents must be approached cautiously.

    #32: many eye problems are a result of eye stress, and eye exercises do, in fact, help. in my case, and in the cases of others that i know. the problem with this is that the experts want to sell you glasses, and some things just don’t get proven scientifically.

    #59: your link talks about a review of studies, which it also admits are not very comprehensive. chiropractic combined with other bodywork modalities, as well as changing the way you treat you body, can have a profound effects on quite a lot of things that on which the medical industry claims sole domain. headaches are a good example, though migraines can have quite a lot of causes. chiropractic alone is not entirely powerful, but the reason why the medical industry has success where bodywork fails is that people are more likely to follow through with a once-a-day pill than altering their habits.

  • LOL zombie post

    I do have to say though its pretty funny reading all the comments Greg and Penny made .looks like greg continued to the end and ended it even though it went from dicussing false knowledge and then into talking about equations.

    I did enjoy the 60 false knowledge points and true there are some that i would disagree with but theres isnt much to be said since its already been discussed

  • So I found few things that were only correct on technicalities, but there one thing that seriously bugged me. There absolutely has been evidence of string theory in physical experiments. There has been more than one experiment that has yielded a result that not only jived with string theory, but couldn’t be explained by any other known situation. High temperature super conductivity can currently ONLY be explained by weird phenomenon that result from string theory and this was something found three years ago.

    More recently, the experimenters at the LHC decided to define all of their geometric constants to a greater degree of accuracy. When they did this, their calculations predicted behavior further from what was observed than before which is the opposite of what you’re expect by using greater accuracy. This can very easily be explained by the curved dimensions that these particles on tiny scales are interacting with. for example, in a curved dimension, Pi will not be exactly the same. By defining it even closer to Pi in flat space, we would expect to see greater diversion from observed outcomes. There is literally no explanation for this other than one through curved dimensions in string theory.

    Aside from physical evidence, math is a very powerful proving tool for any physics. If the math didn’t work out, there wouldn’t be physicists dedicating their entire life into proving it. To this point, the math has proven that the shape of the curled up dimensions WOULD influence the strength of forces. Holes in the dimensions would determine the masses of all of the particle families. Strings are energetic enough to contain rips in the fabric of spacetime making black holes possible and not apocalyptic when on small scales. Even without the exact equations, the mathematics has proven that certain things that we know happen in our universe that other theories fail to explain in detail.

    No its not rigorously proven, but to say there has been no evidence is easily the most misplaced claim since “evolution is just a theory.”

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