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Revelations: the acorn remembers

March 02, 2014 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: Arts and Culture, Eco-Justice, Education, Science/Technology, Spirituality, What People are Doing to Change the World

Banned Ted Talk: The Science Delusion, Rupert Sheldrake at Whitechapel

the idea is that each species, each member of a species draws on the collective memory of the species, and tunes in to past members of the species, and in turn contributes to the further development of the species. So in the case of a potato, you’d have a whole background resonance from past species of potatoes, most of which grow wild in the Andes. And then in that particular case, because it’s a cultivated plant, there’s been a development of a whole lot of varieties of potatoes, which are cultivated, and as it so happens potatoes are propagated vegetatively, so they’re clones.

So each clone of potatoes, each variety, each member of the clone will resonate with all previous members of the clone, and that resonance is against a background of resonance with other members of the potato species, and then that’s related to related potato species, wild ones that still grow in the Andes. So, there’s a whole kind of background resonance, but what’s most important is the resonance from the most similar ones, which is the past members of that variety. And this is what makes the potatoes of that variety develop the way they do, following the habits of their kind.

Usually these things are ascribed to genes. Most people assume that inheritance depends on chemical genes and DNA, and say there’s no problem, it’s all just programmed in the DNA. What I’m saying is that that view of biological development is inadequate. The DNA is the same in all the cells of the potato, in the shoots, in the roots, in the leaves, and the flowers. The DNA is exactly the same, yet these organs develop differently. So something more than DNA must be giving rise to the form of the potato, and that is what I call the morphic field, the organizing field.

    ~ In the Presence of the Past: An Interview with Rupert Sheldrake

Wrong Turn: Biologist Rupert Sheldrake On How Science Lost Its Way

Morphic Resonance: Rupert’s Resonance, Scientific American

On-line Experiments to Change the World

Rupert Sheldrake Interviews

black line Capture

 

Revelations: #Free The Arctic 30!

November 10, 2013 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: Civil Rights, Eco-Justice, Education, Imperialism, Intersectionality, Science/Technology, What People are Doing to Change the World

freePNG

Arctic 30 protester: ‘My little girl will have forgotten who I am if I get out of here in seven years’

The Arctic 30

Take Action!

Autumn Arrives in North America #poetryandsong

September 22, 2013 By: seeta Category: Arts and Culture, Science/Technology, Spirituality, Sunday Music Flashback


The equinox brings autumn on September 22, 2013 at 4:44 P.M EDT


Autumn Movement | by Carl Sandburg

I cried over beautiful things knowing no beautiful thing lasts.

The field of cornflower yellow is a scarf at the neck of the copper sunburned woman,
the mother of the year, the taker of seeds.

The northwest wind comes and the yellow is torn full of holes, new beautiful things
come in the first spit of snow on the northwest wind, and the old things go,
not one lasts.

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Where The Sycamore Grew | By Carrie Richards

The house seemed smaller, now viewed by older eyes…
The street seemed narrower, the trees taller..
Where once were open fields across the road
New construction had bloomed
The small fruit orchard had disappeared

But somehow we knew it would still be there….
Strangely different, …yet much the same
There was an unfamiliar young child’s tricycle
On the flagstone path that we laid…
In front of this little house that lies
Beyond the curve, where the old sycamore grew…

Suddenly, thirty years faded into that autumn day
And quickly had become a springtime of our lives…..
…of first Christmas trees,..of first anniversaries…
…a place where I cried night after night when mother died…
…and spent long, starry nights holding newborn babes….
Yes….it is all still there, in the little yellow house

Funny, but I’m glad they kept the yellow…
It has the same white shutters…
The little yellow house, with a flagstone pathway that we laid
That sits beyond the curve, where the old sycamore grew…

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

(Author Unknown)

“Just before the death of flowers,
And before they are buried in snow,
There comes a festival season
When nature is all aglow.”

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“Days Gone Past” | By Cindy Jorgenson

I think often of the days gone past
Deep in my memory where I know they will last.
Let’s take a walk in the woods so near.
Listen, listen do you hear?
The rustle of leaves,
Birds, flying, chirping,
Little animals scurry to and fro,
The smell of wood smoke on
Cold fall days.
I lift up my face to the suns golden rays.
My memories they still stay.
With a light happy step and a big wide smile,
Let’s sit, let’s talk for a long, long while.
My memories are wonderful of days gone past.
Lets sit I’ll share them with you at last.

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Merry Autumn Days | By Charles Dickens

‘Tis pleasant on a fine spring morn
To see the buds expand,.
‘Tis pleasant in the summer time
To see the fruitful land;
‘Tis pleasant on a winter’s night
To sit around the blaze,
But what are joys like these, my boys,
To merry autumn days!

We hail the merry Autumn days,
When leaves are turning red;
Because they’re far more beautiful
Than anyone has said,
We hail the merry harvest time,
The gayest of the year;
The time of rich and bounteous crops,
Rejoicing and good cheer.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

“The Harvest” | By Franca de la Pena

Golden sheaves stand ripening
in the setting sun,
Bounty of a fruitful harvest,
A year’s labor well spent.

From tiniest seed to trees laden
with sweet promise
The earth gives forth her joy
in abundance.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

“Autumn Magic” | By Jeanne Fiedler

It’s Fall
The season of wisdom
where we attain
colors of great knowledge
and darker shades of fear

The confusing temperatures
One Spring day
One Winter day
balanced back and forth
to shock us into
temperance and equanimity

The sun is majestic
as it glares through
the vibrant shades
of windblown leaves
as they leave their
colorful hues
on the bare shuffling
ground

The birds are migrating
They flow in and out of
the scenery

As we endure the beauty
We can see the long
permanence of impermanence
Like life and death
from transience to eternity

There’s too much time
But there’s not enough time

We’re listless as the Winter
approaches
Showing its chilling and
colorless humbling of life…

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“An Autumn Day” | By B R Jording

Tell me when the days turn cold
And the crisp, bitter nights set in
I’ll bid adieu, adieu to the sun
And embrace the northern winds
Wake me from my restless sleep
For the trees will crackle soon
And shed their cumbersome coats and dance
bare with me and the moon
My mouth how it waters in pure delight
Dreaming of scented dregs
Cinnamon, pumpkin, apple spice
Swirling in my head!
And on Halloween, I’ll await you where
The headless one rides by
chasing after phantom fools
and so this nigh shall I,
September days may shorten in length
October evenings can fright
November rains may fall and freeze
Over the Samoan night
but deep within the heart
Of the dormant Earth
The little buds await the Fall
To ensure them of rebirth
And so I sit much like them
Dependant in every way
Upon the plentiful harvest,
Of an autumn day.

Harvest Full Moon Rises This Week, Summer Wind Come and Gone

September 17, 2013 By: seeta Category: Arts and Culture, Science/Technology, Sunday Music Flashback


Watch the near full moon rise soon after sunset, Wednesday, September 18, and reach official full moon status at 7:13 am EDT the next morning around when sun rises.


It is the summer’s great last heat,
It is the fall’s first chill: They meet.
–Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt


The equinox brings autumn on September 22, 2013 at 4:44 P.M EDT.

From Space:

This Thursday’s full moon carries the title of “Harvest Moon” for those living in the Northern Hemisphere. But what gives the special moon its name?

The moon officially turns full when it reaches the spot in the sky opposite (180 degrees) from the sun. That moment will occur on Thursday (Sept. 19) at 7:13 a.m. EDT (1113 GMT).

Thursday’s full moon is the one nearest to the September equinox this year, making it the Harvest Moon by the usual definition.


Autumn Twilight, Dwelling Among Mountains by Wang Wei

In the empty mountains after the new rain
The evening is cool. Soon it will be autumn.
The bright moon shines between the pines.
The crystal streams flows over the pebbles.
Girls coming home from washing in the river
Rustle through the bamboo grove.
Lotus leaves dance behind the fisherman’s boat.
The perfumes of spring have vanished
But my guests will long remember them.


(translation by Kenneth Rexroth)

Poverty saps mental capacity to deal with complex tasks, say scientists

August 31, 2013 By: seeta Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Economic Terrorism, Education, Intersectionality, Poverty, Science/Technology


The strain of poverty may mean people are more likely to make bad decisions that exacerbate their financial problems. Photograph: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

From The Guardian:

Poor people spend so much mental energy on the immediate problems of paying bills and cutting costs that they are left with less capacity to deal with other complex but important tasks, including education, training or managing their time, suggests research published on Thursday.

The cognitive deficit of being preoccupied with money problems was equivalent to a loss of 13 IQ points, losing an entire night’s sleep or being a chronic alcoholic, according to the study. The authors say this could explain why poorer people are more likely to make mistakes or bad decisions that exacerbate their financial difficulties.

Anandi Mani, a research fellow at the Centre for Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy at the University of Warwick, one of the four authors of the study, said the findings also suggest how small interventions or “nudges” at appropriate moments to help poor people access services and resources could help them break out of the poverty trap. Writing in the journal Science, Mani said previous research has found that poor people use less preventive health care, do not stick to drug regimens, are tardier and less likely to keep appointments, are less productive workers, less attentive parents, and worse managers of their finances. “The question we therefore wanted to address is, is that a cause of poverty or a consequence of poverty?”

She said the team of researchers, which included economists and psychologists in the UK and the US, wanted to test a hypothesis: “The state of worrying where your next meal is going to come from – you have uncertain income or you have more expenses than you can manage and you have to juggle all these things and constantly being pre-occupied about putting out these fires – takes up so much of your mental bandwidth, that you have less in terms of cognitive capacity to deal with things which may not be as urgent as your immediate emergency, but which are, nevertheless, important for your benefit in the medium or longer term.”

(h/t: Judy Edwards)

The Legacy of Henrietta Lacks, Finally Her Own

August 09, 2013 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Science/Technology

A Family Consents to a Medical Gift, 62 Years Later

hlHenrietta Lacks was only 31 when she died of cervical cancer in 1951 in a Baltimore hospital. Not long before her death, doctors removed some of her tumor cells. They later discovered that the cells could thrive in a lab, a feat no human cells had achieved before.

Soon the cells, called HeLa cells, were being shipped from Baltimore around the world. In the 62 years since — twice as long as Ms. Lacks’s own life — her cells have been the subject of more than 74,000 studies, many of which have yielded profound insights into cell biology, vaccines, in vitro fertilization and cancer.

But Henrietta Lacks, who was poor, black and uneducated, never consented to her cells’ being studied. For 62 years, her family has been left out of the decision-making about that research. Now, over the past four months, the National Institutes of Health has come to an agreement with the Lacks family to grant them some control over how Henrietta Lacks’s genome is used….

The agreement, which does not provide the family with the right to potential earnings from future research on Ms. Lacks’s genome, was prompted by two projects to sequence the genome of HeLa cells, the second of which was published Wednesday in the journal Nature.

Though the agreement, which was announced Wednesday, is a milestone in the saga of Ms. Lacks, it also draws attention to a lack of policies to balance the benefits of studying genomes with the risks to the privacy of people whose genomes are studied — as well as their relatives.

See also Henrietta Lacks Foundation

hlf

Revelations: Silence of the Bees

May 05, 2013 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: Consumer Rights, Eco-Justice, Intersectionality, Science/Technology, Spirituality

To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee, One clover, and a bee . . .Emily Dickinson

To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,
One clover, and a bee . . .Emily Dickinson

Why are bees dying? The U.S. and Europe have different theories.

The mysterious collapse of bee colonies around the world has turned into a real crisis. In the United States, domesticated bee populations have reached a 50-year low and keep dwindling. The situation is just as dire in many other countries.

And that’s bad news for all those crops that depend on bees. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that “out of some 100 crop species which provide 90% of food worldwide, 71 of these are bee-pollinated.” Around the world, these crops are worth at least $207 billion.

EU Bans Pesticides Thought Harmful to Bees

EPA does Nothing

CI: DNA “Evidence”, Privacy, and Racialized Dragnets

April 03, 2013 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Criminal Defense, Criminal Injustice Series, Intersectionality, Prison Industrial Complex, Prisoner Rights, Science/Technology

Criminal InJustice is a weekly series devoted to taking action against inequities in the U.S. criminal justice system. Nancy A. Heitzeg, Professor of Sociology and Race/Ethnicity, is the Editor of CI. Kay Whitlock, co-author of Queer (In)Justice, is contributing editor of CI. Criminal Injustice is published every Wednesday at 6 pm.



DNA “Evidence”, Privacy, and Racialized Dragnets
by nancy a heitzeg

DNA. Big Science – with a capital “S”. We are blinded by the seeming certainty of it,  a notion reinforced by endless variations of CSI -like crime shows and the growing number of Innocence Project exonerations that rely on the power of the double helix. The so-called “Fingerprint of the 21st Century”.

Deceptively simple, the key word being deceptive.

The role of DNA in criminal investigations increasingly raises critical questions – most immediately surrounding the right to privacy and Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable search and seizure. This issue is the central matter in the current Supreme Court case Maryland v. King.

But there is much more at stake than privacy rights. DNA collection under the auspices of criminal injustice raises questions about accuracy and efficacy, and at rock bottom, risks for the renewed reification of “race”, all wrapped in the guise of “race-neutral” policy.

(more…)