background preloader

A brief history of melancholy - Courtney Stephens

A brief history of melancholy - Courtney Stephens
Robert Burton attempted to gather the totality of human thinking on sadness and melancholy in his 1621 book The Anatomy of Melancholy. Similar to the approach in this video, Burton gathered widely in thinking about the subject. This includes quotes from thinkers and literature, anatomical drawings, and Burton’s own meditations. Check this page of quotes by Robert Burton for more insight into his thinking! Burton was fascinated by the ancient humoral medical system, from which the word melancholy is derived: Black bile = melancholia. Burton’s quote “he who increaseth wisdom increaseth sorrow,” (which some have suggested was Burton being ironic) has become a cliché that artists and writers tend to attribute to depression and other challenging emotions. In the Buddhist worldview, suffering has always been regarded as part of the fundamental fabric of reality. Sooner or later, everyone gets the blues. Related:  TEDx - 1FISICAStress/Depression

Understanding world economics A call for Pro-truth to replace Pro-Vax v Anti-Vax « Ura on Conscious Business Culture Viral Vaccination Post I shared some thoughts on Facebook last night and had my first taste after years as an active social media user of ‘going viral’. As I write there have been 1,463 shares and 1310 likes. The subject was vaccination. It can be a viral subject, but it can be very ugly too, generally with discussion strings getting quite insulting and with most participants either pro-vax, or anti-vax and with the people in between keeping out of the line of fire. My Vaccination Position : Pro-Truth My position on vaccination is pro-data, and pro-truth. Vaccination is not an issue that is purely black or white. The subject in my experience get lots of misinformation pumped in from both sides of the argument. It is a subject to which I bring quite deep industry experience having worked as a senior commercial executive in medical science for 12 years and in other sciences for another three. The key point here is science. The problem is now the journey the whole vaccination issue has taken.

Schrödinger's cat: A thought experiment in quantum mechanics - Chad Orzel Here’s are more TED-Ed Lessons by the same educator: Particles and waves: The central mystery of quantum mechanics and What is the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle? Schrödinger’s Cat is a very fertile subject for discussion, and has also been discussed in this lesson from Josh Samani. Here’s more about the thought experiment described briefly by Minute Physics. Go to the Sixty Symbols video and learn much more detail about Schrodinger’s Cat. For a humorous look at this cat experiment, venture to this site for a simulation. Erwin Schrödinger shared the 1933 Nobel Prize in Physics with Paul Dirac for his discovery of the equation that governs the behavior of quantum particles. Schrödinger had wide-ranging interests in science and philosophy, and delivered a famous lecture on the physics of biology at Trinity College in 1943. One of the issues associated with Schrödinger’s cat thought experiment is exactly how an experiment arrives at the single final state that we observe.

There's a Better Way to Solve Your Problems It's easy to become rigidly fixed within a view of who you are (“This is just the way I am”), and to become unable to envision possibilities for expanding your personal capacities, thinking, and emotions outside of that fixed view. Unfortunately, this disables you from enlarging your perspective, which is necessary to solve conflicts or problems that you feel stuck inside of, or unable to change or alter. President Dwight Eisenhower reportedly said that if you’re having difficulty understanding a problem and how to solve it, “enlarge” it. New empirical research demonstrates this, and shows that, in effect, distancing yourself from a problem or conflict enhances your reasoning, and helps you find new solutions through a broadened perspective. The research found that you may think about a conflict more wisely if you consider it as an outside observer would. And that’s a step toward greater wisdom. dlabier@CenterProgressive.org Center for Progressive Development Blog: Progressive Impact

Should you stop eating fish? Oceanographer (and TED Prize winner) Sylvia Earle (TED Talk: My wish: Protect our oceans) has spent half a century campaigning to save the world’s seas. A new Netflix original documentary about her life’s work sheds light on the environmental impact of the commercial fishing industry and Earle’s crusade to create underwater “hope spots” through her organization, Mission Blue. After watching the film, it’s hard not to wonder: Are any fish still okay to eat? We turned to our favorite aquanaut for advice. To restore the ocean ecosystem, you’re saying we must put an end to overfishing and bottom trawling, which you liken to “catching songbirds with a bulldozer.” Except for those living in coastal communities — or even inland if we’re talking freshwater species — for most people, eating fish is a choice, not a necessity. What if I just want to have a tuna roll every once in a while, as a treat? Sometimes it gets confusing. It’s obvious. What about catch shares and privatized fish farming?

Medical Nemesis: The Cycle of Physician-Caused Anger, Despair and Death Patients can demand to be taken seriously, and all of us - patients and dissident professionals together - can help one another to be taken seriously. (Image: Holding stethoscope via Shutterstock) Regaining power over our own health - power that has been taken from us by uncaring bureaucracies and arrogant authorities - was the goal of Ivan Illich's 1976 book Medical Nemesis, which detailed an epidemic of physician-caused death and illness. Unfortunately, this epidemic continues, and so does an epidemic of physician-caused anger, anxiety and despair. Today, it is not news that US medicine is killing us in huge numbers. Among the lengthy list of preventable medical errors resulting in death, it is especially drug use errors, communication failures and diagnostic errors that result in another medical nemesis: They can make us appear - and sometimes feel - like we're "crazy" - out of touch with reality. How Diagnosis Can Render Us "Crazy" Atkins is not alone. The Case of Ernest Hemingway

What is the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle? - Chad Orzel Minute Physics offers a shorter version of the Uncertainty Principle argument with cartoon sheep! Check it out! The Uncertainty Principle was introduced by Werner Heisenberg in 1927, as part of a long-running project to develop a complete theory of quantum physics. Heisenberg had developed a quantum theory in 1926 built around the idea that only directly measurable quantities should be considered. Heisenberg’s quantum theory was expressed in terms of matrix algebra, a branch of mathematics that was not commonly used in physics at the time (in fact, Heisenberg laboriously re-invented a good deal of mathematics before his mentor Max Born recognized that he was working with matrices), and was initially very coolly received. Finally, it should be noted that the interpretation presented in the video, while fairly widely accepted, is not the only formulation of quantum mechanics. The Bohmian approach has a small but passionate community of advocates actively researching its implications.

How the depressed brain changes after psychotherapy | Neuroscience Community By Lauren Sakowski The struggle with depression involves more than long-term bouts of sadness, helplessness, and hopelessness. Just ask anyone that has lived through it. Other emotionally-based symptoms such as dysphoric affect and anxiety have been reported by individuals with depression, and studied by neuroscientists. In their 2009 Frontiers in Human Neuroscience paper, Emma J. More recently, Buchheim et al., 2012 utilized fMRI to examine levels of activation in regions of the brain before and after a 15-month course of psychotherapy, free of medication. Figure 1. Over the course of treatment, the average scores for the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Global Severity Index (GSI) decreased significantly between baseline and endpoint. The major focus of this study was to test whether there was a change in brain activity for patients following treatment that was not observed in controls when exposed to personally relevant cue sentences. Figure 2. References: Thomas, E.J. and R.

5 talks full of weird facts about sex | Playlist Now playing One afternoon, Kees Moeliker got a research opportunity few ornithologists would wish for: A flying duck slammed into his glass office building, died, and then … what happened next would change his life. [Note: Contains graphic images and descriptions of sexual behavior in animals.] Doctors Earn $3.5 Billion in Kickbacks from Pharmaceutical Companies The government’s data on payments to doctors and hospitals by drug and device makers is incomplete and hard to penetrate – but here’s a first look. by Charles OrnsteinProPublica The federal government unveiled data Tuesday detailing 4.4 million payments made to doctors and teaching hospitals by pharmaceutical and medical device companies. The launch of the so-called Open Payments website, mandated under a provision of the Affordable Care Act, was far from glitch-free: Some users encountered long delays and sometimes error messages trying to access its seven data tables. It will take a while to dig deeply into this new trove of data, which covers the period of August to December 2013 and includes general and research payments, as well as payments to companies’ physician investors. So what’s interesting at first glance? * As predicted, the data is messy and not easy to analyze. Similarly, companies reported payments associated with particular drugs in different ways. Like this story?

Einstein's miracle year - Larry Lagerstrom If you want to find out more about the trials and tribulations of the young Einstein and the triumph of his miracle year (including the fact that he also published a fifth significant paper that year!), see the profile “Young Einstein: From the Doxerl Affair to the Miracle Year,” by Larry Randles Lagerstrom. Interested in learning more about the special theory of relativity? Why not take a free online course: “Understanding Einstein: The Special Theory of Relativity?” If you are on Twitter and are interested in receiving occasional tweets with quotes by Einstein and other great scientists, and notes on significant events in the history of science, follow @einsteinandpals. There are hundreds of books on Einstein. Finally, historians of science and others interested in Einstein’s life and work have a fantastic resource in the Collected Papers of Albert Einstein, which includes his correspondence and scientific papers as well as explanatory essays by the editors.

Related: