Placebo.

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Give people a sugar pill, they have shown, and those patients – especially if they have one of the chronic, stress-related conditions that register the strongest placebo effects and if the treatment is delivered by someone in whom they have confidence – will improve. Tell someone a normal milkshake is a diet beverage, and his gut will respond as if the drink were low fat. Take athletes to the top of the Alps, put them on exercise machines and hook them to an oxygen tank, and they will perform better than when they are breathing room air – even if room air is all that’s in the tank. Wake a patient from surgery and tell him you’ve done an arthroscopic repair, and his knee gets better even if all you did was knock him out and put a couple of incisions in his skin. Give a drug a fancy name, and it works better than if you don’t.

You don’t even have to deceive the patients. You can hand a patient with irritable bowel syndrome a sugar pill, identify it as such and tell her that sugar pills are known to be effective when used as placebos, and she will get better, especially if you take the time to deliver that message with warmth and close attention. Depression, back pain, chemotherapy-related malaise, migraine, post-traumatic stress disorder: The list of conditions that respond to placebos – as well as they do to drugs, with some patients – is long and growing. (1)

Fool yourself that you will live.

And you will.

Fool yourself that you will gain knowledge.

And you will.

Fool yourself that you die.

And you will.

But tell me. Why did you need to fool yourself in the first place?

Yes, at the end you will be healed.

But no one can ever be healed.

Unless he wasn’t sick in the first place…

At the end, even the healed ones will die.

While Nature is laughing at their anguish.

Look at yourself in awe.

Can you laugh while crying?

Doctors. AI. Dead people.

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Could machines using artificial intelligence make doctors obsolete?

Artificial intelligence systems simulate human intelligence by learning, reasoning, and self-correction. This technology has the potential to be more accurate than doctors at making diagnoses and performing surgical interventions, says Jörg Goldhahn, MD, MAS, deputy head of the Institute for Translational Medicine at ETH Zurich, Switzerland.

It has a “near unlimited capacity” for data processing and subsequent learning, and can do this at a speed that humans cannot match.

Increasing amounts of health data, from apps, personal monitoring devices, electronic medical records, and social media platforms are being brought together to give machines as much information as possible about people and their diseases. At the same time machines are “reading” and taking account of the rapidly expanding scientific literature. (1)

We believe computers can replace doctors.

But doctors are not here to keep us alive.

They are here to discuss with the dead.

No matter how much data you analyze, you will always miss the point.

That our life is not our own.

And that we are not here to avoid death.

But to embrace it.

A computer cannot help you live.

Simply because it can never die…

The dark self…

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Both world history and everyday life are full of examples of people acting ruthlessly, maliciously, or selfishly. In psychology as well as in everyday language, we have diverse names for the various dark tendencies human may have, most prominently psychopathy (lack of empathy), narcissism (excessive self-absorption), and Machiavellianism (the belief that the ends justify the means), the so-called ‘dark triad’, along with many others such as egoism, sadism, or spitefulness.

Although at first glance there appear to be noteworthy differences between these traits – and it may seem more ‘acceptable’ to be an egoist than a psychopath – new research shows that all dark aspects of human personality are very closely linked and are based on the same tendency. That is, most dark traits can be understood as flavoured manifestations of a single common underlying disposition: The dark core of personality. In practice, this implies that if you have a tendency to show one of these dark personality traits, you are also more likely to have a strong tendency to display one or more of the others.

As the new research reveals, the common denominator of all dark traits, the D-factor, can be defined as the general tendency to maximize one’s individual utility and disregarding, accepting, or malevolently provoking disutility for others, while accompanied by beliefs that serve as justifications. In other words, all dark traits can be traced back to the general tendency of placing one’s own goals and interests over those of others even to the extent of taking pleasure in hurting other’s – along with a host of beliefs that serve as justifications and thus prevent feelings of guilt, shame, or the like. (1)

Darkness is always the result of darkness.

But you can never have darkness without a tiny speck of light.

A light pointing towards the path we need to take.

While we walk away into the abyss. The Sun still shining.

All the shadows are the same.

Do not be afraid of them.

For there are no shadows.

It is just you.

Blocking the light…

Genes. Not important.

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One of the great puzzles of evolutional biology is what induced certain living creatures to abandon solitary existence in favor of living in collaborative societies, as seen in the case of ants and other social, colony-forming insects. A major characteristic of so-called eusocial species is the division of labor between queens that lay eggs and workers that take care of the brood and perform other tasks. But what is it that determines that a queen should lay eggs and that workers shouldn’t reproduce? And how did this distinction come about during the course of evolution? Evolutionary biologists have now found a completely unexpected answer: one single gene called insulin-like peptide 2 (ILP2), which is probably activated by better nutrition, stimulates the ovaries and triggers reproduction. (1)

Inequalities by genes.

The best proof that genes are not the ones defining our life.

We are all brothers.

Especially because we don’t seem to be. [Valia]

Coronavirus: Selecting who will die. Playing God. Hubris. Punishment.

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Many talk about the coronavirus. Many have opinions. Many theories. And one theory that is starting to gain a lot of followers is the one that England has decided to apply: Let’s sacrifice some to save others. Let the vulnerable groups and old men die and let the rest live. If we don’t do it, everyone will be destroyed. (1)

A very progressive view. A very advanced view. A very scientific point of view (yes, scientists were consulted on this decision – see more on herd immunity theories, impact analysis on the economy, etc).

A view – as cliché as it sounds – full of malice and evil. Malice for the fellow who dies. But what do I care for that? I will survive. Malice for those who will suffer. But what do I care about that? The economy will still be standing!

Religion has been saying it again and again but nobody wants to hear it: The biggest trick of the devil is to convince man that he does not exist. In the past, human life was priceless. Every man was a son of God. Now human life is measured in economic terms and sacrificed in front of the needs of the… fit for survival. Darwin would be very proud of England today, which puts into practice the Theory of Evolution in the most gruesome way.

Source (still trying to locate the original artist to obtain his/ her approval to use this here, hope this is OK)

But for Christianity, every human being is potentially God. We are all part of Him. And with proper preparation we can become one with Him. As Nietzsche had said, now man has killed God. And now we are just counting dollars and calculating cost-benefit differences. If the equation is solved, then it is easy for us to kill our grandfather and grandmother because this will save “businesses” or the “GDP”.

At the end, England’s policy may succeed and those who live may gain immunity and their economy potentially will not be destroyed. But it will be an economy built on death and blood. At the end, those most capable for survival may survive. But they will no longer be able to taste the fruits of their victory.

And when the noise subsides and the night comes…

The greatest punishment will not be from cries and vengeance…

But from the sweet gentle touch of your grandmother when she put you to sleep. And from the sweet goodnight she whispered to you…

Right before you killed her.

Update 2020-03-17: The UK government seems to be changing or reconsidering this policy. (source)