Italy, coronavirus, saving the younger ones: Civilization dying.

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In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, it is reported that in Italy there is a shortage in medical supplies and doctors are now making choices about who to save and who to leave unattended to die. There are reports that the selection doctors make are in favor of the younger ones. (Source)

If this is the case, then we are dealing with something worse than the death of some people. We are dealing with the death of civilization per se.

Because there is nothing worse than arrogance. Arrogance that man can ride at the level of God and play God’s role. Arrogance that someone can decide who lives and who dies.

It is such arrogance that made crimes as the Holocaust possible. Don’t be fooled. The devil always comes disguised as an angel.

Sure, there is logic in selecting the younger ones for survival. But a wrong logic altogether. What if that young person is someone terrible who commits crimes? What if the older person who is left to die is an honorable person who had devoted his life to saving others? What if that younger person you saved went on to rape children? What if that old person you killed was an experienced heart surgeon who was going to save the life of a prime minister who would in turn save the world from the next world war? What if that older person was you?

Any logic applied in selecting who lives and who dies, at the end, promotes death. Not life. Death of the ones not selected. Death of a civilization that once upon a time called for saving the weak not because they could survive, but especially because they couldn’t!

Look around.

And in the faces of the people you will not see men and women dying.

But a whole civilization crying…

PS 1. But what should we do? could someone still ask. Shouldn’t we decide something? The answer is simple and already given: we should do nothing! In the case of such life or death dilemmas men should not decide! We cannot play God. Treat people with a “first come first served” priority (and no, no two people arrive simultaneously, simultaneous events do not exist even in theoretical physics). So simple. So “irrational” with regards to our death-loving distorted logic. These dilemmas have been solved a long time ago in modern European law tradition. We are here not to play the role of fate. We are here to suffer it.

PS 2. Yes, you guessed correctly. There is no “trolley problem” as such. In such cases, one should not do anything, i.e. one should not try to play God. The solution to such infamous problems is that you try for the best, without playing the role of fate as we so much like to do these days…

Coronavirus epidemic. Hand washing. The art of simple. And other ‘little things’…

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Photo by Snapwire from Pexels

According to scientists, to fight an epidemic, focus on hand washing. (1)

An advice which came into light just as the epidemic of the coronavirus is gaining momentum.

We have been so much focused on high-tech and elaborate methods of dealing with diseases, that we have forgotten the greatest weapon we ever devised against disease in the first place: Hygiene. And despite our best efforts, even today this still remains our best and most effective weapon.

It is the simple things.

The things we have forgotten.

In a cosmos with the best medical technology, nothing can prevent a virus if people do not wash their hands. In the most developed nation, nothing can save you if there are not sewers. In an era with methods for advanced gene editing available, people can still die for not having soap.

If philosophy can teach us something, anything, this is humility. The ability to look at the simplest things and still stare in awe. If philosophy can teach us something is lack of fear towards the storm. For even in the face of the greatest one, we can dare to say “I am the storm”.

Wash your hands.

Think small.

Those little things.

There is nothing bigger, as David Aames used to say…

Health. Disease. Blurry lines…

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Our genome is made up of 20,000 genes, all of which may cause disease. At present, 4,141 genes have been identified as being responsible for genetic abnormalities, leaving around 16,000 genes with unknown implication in disease. Researchers from the University of Geneva (UNIGE), Switzerland, — working in collaboration with scientists from Pakistan and the USA — have investigated a recessive genetic disorder that destroys the eyes from developing and results in childhood blindness. After analyzing the genomes of each member of a consanguineous family with affected children, the geneticists pinpointed pathogenic mutations in a new gene, MARK3, as being the cause. They subsequently confirmed their findings — published in the journal Human Molecular Genetics — by modifying the homologous gene in drosophila flies, which resulted in abnormal eye development and blindness. The identification of the MARK3 related disease will help to understand the mechanism of the disease, provide diagnostic services, and initiate efforts for a personalized treatment. (1)

The same genes which are praised for their role in life…

Are responsible for the diseases which destroy it…

Could it be that these genes work the wrong way?

Or that we are seeing the whole picture from a wrong standpoint?

Can what is good be evil at the same time?

Can health entail disease?

Can life entail death?

What an irrational cosmos…

So alive. So sad. So true…

Look at the circle on the sand.

The line is blurry.

Distracted by the wind.

Please don’t touch my circle…

Blood on the sand.

A cry of a bird in the distance.

The deep ocean cries…

The Polar Star stands still.

Sick. Healthy. Hallucinations. Truth. [Are you humble enough?]

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It’s a local news story that Stephen King could take notes from: Five people fell ill and started hallucinating, one after another, following contact with one woman who started seeing things in the dead of night.

The caretaker of a 78-year-old woman called the police in North Bend, Oregon’s pre-dawn hours to report people vandalizing her vehicle, KVAL news reports. The cops came and went, finding nothing, only to be called back at 5:30 a.m. for a similar complaint. The officers suspected she was hallucinating, and took her to the hospital, where she was given a clean bill of health and discharged.

But as the day wore on, everyone who’d come in contact with her started showing similar symptoms of mental distress: Both deputies, the 78-year-old woman, and a hospital employee all had to be hospitalized for similar symptoms.

That afternoon, a hazmat team descended on Oregon’s Bay Area Hospital, and the home where it all started, decontaminating vehicles and clearing the emergency room. They turned up nothing. “No source of the contamination has been found,” Sgt. Pat Downing told KVAL. “The vehicles, equipment and uniforms have been checked with no contaminates identified or located on or about them.” Not a blip in the patients’ blood samples, either. (1)

We are the others.

The others are us.

Sometimes we believe this holds true at a metaphorical or symbolical level. Only when we truly realize that this is true at the lowest literal level possible (as it is the case with all great philosophical truths), will we be able to let go of our prejudices and see others as they truly are.

Are we healthy?

Or are the sick healthy instead?

Are you humble enough to accept the unacceptable?

Disease. Accepting.

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Can we learn to live with – rather than kill – cancer? A new study suggests that frequent, low-dose chemotherapy that keeps tumor growth under control may be more effective than standard high-dose chemotherapy that seeks to eradicate cancer cells completely. The treatment strategy, which was tested in mice, flies in the face of conventional cancer therapy, which generally hits patients with the maximum drug dose possible to kill off the largest number of tumor cells.

Despite aggressive treatment, complete cancer eradication is rare and toxic side effects all too common. Recently, researchers have questioned the benefits of standard chemotherapy because while it destroys drug-sensitive tumor cells, it leaves behind drug-resistant cells. By eliminating the former population of tumor cells, the drug allows resistant cells to take over and drive tumor growth uncontrolled. (1, 2)

Learning to accept.

The most difficult lesson of all…

People see humility as a sign of weakness.

People see acceptance as a sign of powerlessness.

But it was Christ and some fishermen who changed the world.

Just because they accepted us…