good to read


Biologists’ knowledge of the human microbiome has exploded in the last decade, driven by advances in big data and DNA testing. The richness of the information collected raises myriad new and exciting questions for scientists. … In the end, virtually no aspect of human biology is likely to remain untouched by microbiome research.

Jon Turney
 
The Human Microbiome

23 june 15  | Turney, I, Superorganism
Science writer Jon Turney explores the microbiome, a living, shifting system of previously unimagined importance and complexity. His explorations will make you think again about your relationship with your body, your habits – even your sense of who and what you are – as it reveals what it means to be a 21st century superorganism.

 

 

 

Bringing Balance to Gaia

17 june 15 | Ingerman, Roberts, Speaking with Nature
Renowned shamanic teachers Sandra Ingerman and Llyn Roberts explain how anyone can access the spirit of nature . By tapping into the feminine wisdom of the Earth, we evoke a deep sense of belonging with the natural world and cultivate our inner landscape, planting the seeds for harmony and a natural state of joy.

 

 

 

Exploring Altered States

1 june 15 | Hancock, The Divine Spark
In this anthology, edited by Graham Hancock, 22 writers discuss psychedelics and their myriad connections to consciousness. Travel to South America, the American Southwest, outer space, inner space, and back in time to revisit Pahnke’s The Good Friday experiment, and explore the effects of ayahuasca and LSD

 

 

 

Our Role in the Collective Transition

26 may 15 | Macy, Johnstone, Active Hope
The challenges we face can be difficult even to think about. Climate change, economic upheaval, and mass extinction together create a planetary emergency of overwhelming proportions. Active Hope shows us how to strengthen our capacity to face this crisis so that we can respond with unexpected resilience and creative power.

 

 

 

Natural Intuition and Inner Powers

21 may 15 | Beery, The Gift of Shamanism
Each of us has shamanic powers. Glimpses of them can arise at any age in the form of intuitive dreams, déja vu, spontaneous visions, and out-of-body experiences. Most people dismiss these experiences. However, by embracing these gifts, we can unlock our shamanic potential to change ourselves and the world around us.

 

 

 

Entheogenesis

15 may 15 | Metzner, Allies for Awakening
This monograph is based on 50 years of experience as a participant-observer in the international underground sub-culture involved with entheogenic, consciousness-expanding substances, discussing the multifold uses and values of such substances for spiritual awakening, psychotherapy, healing, and the enhancement of creativity.

 

 

 

Overcoming Materialism

7 may 15 | Kastrup, Brief Peeks Beyond
This book is a multi-faceted exploration and critique of the human condition as it is presently manifested. It addresses science and philosophy, explores the underlying nature of reality, the state of our society and culture, the influence of the mainstream media, the nature of free will and a number of other topics.

 

 

 

good to know

Below Our Feet, a World of Hidden Life

science | 1 july 15 | Elizabeth Svoboda, Quanta Magazine
The soil teems with billions of hidden microbes. Researchers have begun to catalog how these organisms are changing the world. The study underscored just how necessary microbial activity is to plant health and productivity.

Initiatives for a better world

culture | 29 june 15 | Catherine Taibi, The Huffington Post
An alliance of 45 newspapers from all around the world participate in a day dedicated to focusing on solutions-based stories about people, places and events, inspiring change on a global level.

Imagination Beats Practice

mind | 29 june 15 | Association for Psychological Science
Practice may not make perfect, but visualization might. People who imagined a visual target were faster at finding it in a display than those who did an actual practice run.

Aboriginal people …

eco | 29 june 15 | David Suzuki, The Vancouver Sun
… not environmentalists, are our best bet for protecting the planet.

A Thread in the Vine

mind | 23 june 15 | Jeff Baker, ResearchGate
This thesis uses the philosophy of deep ecology as a theoretical framework to explore ecospiritual themes as a key feature of increasing discourse around the ayahuasca phenomenon. The broad objective of the research is to use contemporary ayahuasca discourse to reveal the way cross-cultural seekers engage with and discuss shamanic practices that inform a postmodern ecosophical ontology and deep ecological praxis.

Inevitable or Accident?

science | 23 june 15 | Rick Searle, Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies
The “anthropic principle” makes the claim that not just life, but life of ever growing complexity and intelligence is not just likely, but the inevitable result of the laws of nature.

Backyard Evolution

life | 17 june 15 | Victoria Schlesinger, Aeon
Evolution works through tiny corridors of space and time, transforming species before our eyes. In 100 years we might not find the same adapted groups thriving in our proverbial backyards.

It’s Not a 'Stream' of Consciousness

mind | 17  june 15 | Gregory Hickok, The New York Times
We actually perceive the world in rhythmic pulses rather than as a continuous flow, as famously stated by the American psychologist William James back in 1890, comparing it with the flow of a river, a stream.

Biodegradable computer chips

eco | 15 june 15 | John Steeno, University of Wisconsin-Madison
In an effort to alleviate the environmental burden of electronic devices, scientists have develop a surprising solution: a semiconductor chip made almost entirely of wood.

The Benefits Of Doing Nothing

life | 11 june 15 | Shelley M. White, Collective Evolution
Sitting in stillness and silence, void of any stimuli, is seen as doing nothing – a view with the implication that doing nothing is synonymous with being nothing. However, this could not be further from the truth.

Non-computability of Consciousness

science | 5 june 15 | Daegene Song, PRNewswire
A Korean quantum physicist has shown that computers will never be able to duplicate human consciousness or be programmed to do so, because they lack the fundamental … well, humanity.

End of the car age

eco | 5 june 15 | Stephen Moss, The Guardian
Cities around the world are coming to the same conclusion: they’d be better off with far fewer cars. So what’s behind this seismic shift in our urban lifestyles?

The Consciousness Revolution

mind | 1 june 15 | Graham Hancock, Reality Sandwich
Consciousness is one of the great mysteries of science. Yet no one can really claim to have understood and explained it completely. An excerpt from Graham Hancock’s new book The Divine Spark.

We Need A Modern Origin Story

culture | 28 may 15 | David Christian, Edge
We’re now at the point where, across so many domains, the amount of information, of good, rigorous ideas, is so rich that we can tease out an origin story that works for humans in Beijing as well as in Buenos Aires – A Big History.

Happily never after

life | 26 may 15 | Katherine May, Aeon
Messy plots, audience participation and uncertain endings: how digital storytelling revives the ancient art of gossip.

Explanation of our existence

science | 19 may 15 | Michael Slezak, New Scientist
Giant magnetic spirals in the sky could explain why there is something rather than nothing in the universe, according to an analysis of data from NASA’s Fermi space telescope.

Higher Consciousness

mind | 15 may 15 | The School of Life
‘Higher consciousness’ sounds mystical and possibly irritating. It shouldn’t. It just captures how we see things when we go beyond our own egos. Video.

Ecological Corridor

eco | 13 may 15 | Giles Constantine, Eye On Latin America
Colombia proposes an ambitious plan that would establish the world’s largest ‘ecological corridor’, protecting vast swathes of Amazon rainforest stretching from the Andes to the Atlantic coast.

Psilocybe germanica

science | 11 may 15 | Jochen Gartz, Georg Wiedemann, Drug Testing and Analysis
Discovery of a new caerulescent Psilocybe mushroom in Germany. Paper.

The Reality Nervous System

mind | 7 may 15 | Bernardo Kastrup, Reality Sandwich
One of the most important ideas discussed in Bernardo Kastrup’s book Brief Peeks Beyond, is the notion that empirical reality – all things we see, hear, touch, smell and taste – can be understood as a nervous system.

Inevitable or Accident?

science | 1 may 15 | Rick Searle, Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies
The “anthropic principle” makes the claim that not just life, but life of ever growing complexity and intelligence is not just likely, but the inevitable result of the laws of nature.

How to Save the Universe

life | 27 apr 15 | Michael Hanlon, Aeon
We are doomed. Our best efforts to reproduce, to conserve, protect and survive will, in the end, come to nought. It is only a matter of time before our Universe goes black, cold and dies. Must this be the end of the road for life?

The Toad Prophet

mind | 21 apr 15 | Vice Mexico
In search of Bufo alvarius – a species that contains a very high dosage of the powerful hallucinogen 5-MEO-DMT in its body – with Dr. Octavio Rettig Hinojosa.

Health Benefits of Urban Nature

eco | 17 apr 15 | American Institute of Biological Sciences, ScienceDaily
Could a dose of nature be just what the doctor ordered? There is a well-established link between time spent in nature and better human health.

Swearing is good for you

life | 17 apr 15 | Chris Riotta, Elite Daily
People who curse all the time are hotter, confident and less stressed.

good to see


The Universe as a Fruitcake

Where did the universe come from? David Kaplan explores the leading cosmological explanation with the help of a baking metaphor.




Metaphysical Features of Reality

Ben Ridgway has been making experimental animations since 1992 and worked as a 3D artist in the video game industry.




Reverence

Zana Briski's project is a traveling exhibit of large-scale photographs, film and music housed in a movable 10,000 square ft. structure designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Shigeru Ban.




good to hear


Just let go

The piece, featuring Natasha Khan, is taken from British composer and musician John Metcalfe’s new album The Appearance of Colour.




Dreamland Security

David Westbom, aka Asteroids and Earthquakes studied electronic production and design at Berklee College of music; his debut album was released this spring.




Uncertainty, Green

Fabio Perletta’s new album Unseed takes its name from the Japanese tradition of contemplating the transient beauty of nature. Green tea and sandals are recommended, but not required.




Divine Waves

From the opening cymbal swoosh and laconic bass riff, Cory Allen’s new album The Source breathes a deep, ritualistic air.




Electric

The Chilean band Föllakzoid is famous for its looping riffs stretching across deeply repetitive percussion, creating an atmosphere somewhere between psychedelic trance and stupor.




Lead Us to the Sound

Erothyme douses all of his beats in multiplicitous melting layers of homebrewed extra-sultry sweetsauce.




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