There’s a two-storey warehouse wall in Melbourne’s western suburbs where man-made concrete uniformity has been transformed. On this enormous vertical surface is a complex, apparently natural scene that has no clear structure but nonetheless seems alive with meaning.
A programme to teach young children the basics of philosophical thinking in UK schools has been shown to help them progress in maths and reading. A new study evaluated the use of the Philosophy for Children (P4C) programme in which primary school children are guided through discussions of questions such as “Should a healthy heart be donated to a person who has not looked after themselves?” or “Is it acceptable for people to wear their religious symbols at work places?”
The programme is intended to help children become more willing and able to question, reason, construct arguments and collaborate.
Over the past few years, I’ve organized philosophy workshops around the world: with students at Palestinian and Indonesian universities, Hasidic Jews in New York, teenagers in Brazil and an Iroquois community in Canada.
I chose the locations deliberately along various lines of conflict: Israel and Palestine, Islam and the West, religious orthodoxy and urban modernity, social and racial divisions in Brazil, and the struggle of Native Americans with the legacy of colonialism.
Michael Abrash, the chief scientist for Facebook's Oculus, took the stage during day two of the F8 Developer Conference in San Francisco to blow everyone's mind with some trippy optical illusions. During the keynote, Abrash highlighted some interesting illusions to explain how we can trick our eyes into thinking what we're seeing is reality. And according to Abrash, these perceptions, and the assumptions our brain makes about them, are what make virtual reality work.
Lao Tzu, author of Tao Te Ching, was a philosopher and poet of ancient China. As founder of philosophical Taoism, he's a legendary figure dated back to the 6th Century BCE and supposedly a contemporary of Confucius. Throughout history, Laozi's work has been embraced by various anti-authoritarian movements.
Nature's pollinator's can be quite the blessing, especially for a tribe in Nepal which hunts their wild honey laced with natural psychoactive properties. Referred to as "mad honey," the sticky substance is used as a medicine and soft drug, but can even lead to serious complications if abused. Dipak, the translator of this for this short clip takes a valuable lesson when he overdoses on some of the honey.
Until recently, research into psychedelic drugs have been strictly forbidden despite their therapeutic potential. These trends are changing however as more researchers are taking the leap into the reality of MDMA. MAPS, a non-profit organization, is sponsoring FDA-approved clinical research to develop psychedelic-assisted therapies into prescriptions for mental health. The research focuses on adults on the autism spectrum and whether or not the therapy can enhance functional skills and quality of life with those dealing with social anxiety.
There's no doubt children come equipped with wild imaginations, but what happens there's actual truth behind it all? That's exactly what happened when a young boy named Ryan began experiencing nightmares at the age of four.
It wasn't until he turned five that he decided to finally confront his parents about his past life which centered around being an actor and working on various movies in the 1930s.
Receiving mainstream publicity and as one of the best known cases of alleged alien abduction, the Travis Walton story has generated quite a bit of controversy over-time. After spending years hiding from the public-view, another witness named Steve Pierce is finally coming forward with his perspective on the incident.
When you look up at the blue sky, where are the stars that you see at night? They’re there but we can’t see them. A firefly flitting across a field is invisible to us during the day, but at night we can easily spot its flashes. Similarly, proteins, viruses, parasites and bacteria inside living cells can’t be seen by the naked eye under normal conditions. But a technique using a fluorescent protein can light up cells' molecular machinations like a microscopic flashlight.
Is the Earth now spinning through the “Age of Humans?” More than a few scientists think so. They’ve suggested, in fact, that we modify the name of the current geological epoch (the Holocene, which began roughly 12,000 years ago) to the “Anthropocene.” It’s a term first put into wide circulation by Nobel-Prize winning atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen in an article published in Nature in 2002. And it’s stirring up a good deal of debate, not only among geologists.
The recent earthquake in Nepal demonstrated yet again how difficult it is to reliably predict natural disasters. While we have a good knowledge of the various earthquakes zones on the planet, we have no way of knowing exactly when a big quake like the 7.8-magnitude event in Nepal will happen.