Ian Stevenson’s case for reincarnation: Are we skeptics really just cynics?

If you're anything like me, with eyes that roll over to the back of your head whenever you hear words like "reincarnation" or "parapsychology," if you suffer great paroxysms of despair for human intelligence whenever you catch a glimpse of that dandelion-colored cover of Heaven Is For Real or other such books, and become angry when hearing about an overly Botoxed charlatan telling a poor grieving mother how her daughter's spirit is standing behind her, then keep reading, because you're precisely the type of person who should be aware of the late Professor Ian Stevenson's research on children's memories of previous lives. Stevenson, who died in 2007, was a psychiatrist by training — and a prominent one at that. In 1957, at the still academically tender age of 38, he'd been named Chair of psychiatry at the University of Virginia....

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The geography of sorrow: Interview with Francis Weller

For a man who specializes in grief and sorrow, psychotherapist Francis Weller certainly seems joyful. When I arrived at his cabin in Forestville, California, he emerged with a smile and embraced me. His wife, Judith, headed off to garden while Francis led me into their home among the redwoods to talk. I had wanted to interview Weller ever since the publisher I work for, North Atlantic Books, had agreed to publish his new book, The Wild Edge of Sorrow: Rituals of Renewal and the Sacred Work of Grief. Over the previous few years my father, grandfather, grandmother, father-in-law, and sister-in-law had all died, and I'd also moved across the country and was missing the friends and community I'd left behind. I'd been living with a free-floating state of unease, but I'd largely sidestepped direct encounters with my losses. In his...

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What the world needs: Safe, affordable and effective medicines

If one has a heart, for humanity, one would choose a list of affordable medicines that are safe and easy to administer so that even the poor could afford them. It is highly insensitive for modern medicine to promote medicines that most people cannot afford. The worst examples of this are the new medicines oncologists are beginning to use, instead of chemotherapy, that stimulate the immune system. It does not help the competition between modern pharmacology and the natural medicines we are presenting here that most pharmaceuticals are mitochondria poisons that do not cure people of anything. The key factors in choosing medicines for the world would be their affordability, accessibly, their strength and effectiveness. The most basic medicines on our list are all natural medicines like sodium bicarbonate, magnesium chloride, selenium, sulfur, zinc, boron, potassium bicarbonate, boron, zinc and...

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A dog’s size and head shape predicts its temperament

The old saying goes that you can't judge a book by its cover, suggesting that first impressions based upon the look of something don't give you much information. However a recent study suggests that for dogs, their appearance (in terms of their size and their head shape), may well give you a lot of information about the personality and behavioral characteristics of the dog. Although the initial domestication of dogs may have occurred 14,000 years or more in the past, humans have continued to transform dogs to fulfill many different functions associated with guarding, herding, hunting, or simply companionship. Our selective breeding of dogs has modified their size and their shape dramatically so that the more than 400 recorded breeds of dogs are easily recognizable based on their physical characteristics. It also appears that there is some correlation between a...

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How to get more vitamin D during the winter when the days shorten

As winter approaches, we find ourselves cooped up indoors more enjoying those hot cups of coffee or cocoa, and dismissing the idea of venturing out in the cold. However, our bodies need sunlight and vitamin D, especially in the winter when the days shorten. It's difficult to get enough vitamin D in the winter. The days are shorter and the weather is cold and gloomy and the dreaded cold and flu season is in full swing. But you definitely should venture outside some, because so many studies show that vitamin D helps reduce the risk of colds and flu, giving your immune system a huge boost. The Vitamin D Council recommends vitamin D to help prevent colds and flu (URI or upper respiratory infections) based on the findings of two large meta-analyses (the strongest proof in medicine) published in respected...

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Fast and the furriest: Rats enjoy driving tiny cars, US researchers discover

A group of scientists in the US trained rats to drive tiny cars in return for bits of Fruit Loops cereal, and found that both the training and the satisfaction of the task itself reduced the rodents' stress levels. While readers may scoff that such research was carried out in the first place, senior author Kelly Lambert of the University of Richmond thinks the investigation could one day improve the development of non-pharmaceutical forms of treatment for mental illness. The basis for her theory? Neuroplasticity. ...

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Why it’s wrong to cast stones at Jordan Peterson for seeking treatment

Benzodiazepines can be thought of as wolves in sheep's clothing. It is no secret that while social media can be a wonderful world of learning and connection, it can equally be an ignorant cesspool that serves as a window into the darker corners of human nature. Recently, Canadian clinical psychologist Jordan B. Peterson — author of the international bestseller 12 Rules For Life: An Antidote to Chaos — along with his daughter, decided to bravely pre-empt a foreshadowed character assassination by disclosing on social media that he had sought treatment for clonazepam dependence at a rehabilitation center. Peterson had been prescribed clonazepam — a type of anti-anxiety medication of the benzodiazepine class — to help manage the stressors associated with the recent devastating news of his wife's cancer diagnosis. When it comes to the addiction and mental health treatment world,...

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Because no one asked: GMO avocados in development

Avocados not only are one of the world's healthiest fruits, they're also among the most economically important, representing a $13 billion market in 2017.1 Avocados have been enjoyed since ancient times, but their DNA has been largely foreign — until now. A group of U.S. and Mexican scientists have sequenced the genomes of Mexican and well-known Hass avocados. Their study, published in PNAS,2 reveals "ancient evolutionary relationships" that give clues to the fruit's origins but also opens the floodgates to future genetic modification of this already perfect food. Indeed, as The New York Times put it, the research is "likely to become the foundation for breeding techniques and genetic modifications designed to produce avocados that can resist disease or survive in drier conditions."3 ...

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Biological resetting: Novel therapies to heal nerve and neuropathic pain

Dr. Matthew Cook is a former anesthesiologist who became a regenerative medicine specialist and founder of BioReset Medical1 in Campbell, California. In this interview, we discuss several novel therapies offered there, which can be next to impossible to find elsewhere. "I went to medical school and did an anesthesiology residency at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) ... I was doing regional anesthesia, so I was basically doing nerve blocks all day, every day ... After that ... I figured out how to do almost every surgery, from total knee replacement to shoulder surgery, without having to do general anesthesia. I sort of evolved into finding out that I could fix a lot of those problems either by treating nerves or treating ligaments, tendons, fascia and joints. I started the regenerative medicine practice. As part of my journey of doing...

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