04 September 2009

hearing voices

   Hearing voices is not an unusual phenomenon. As many 1 of every 25 people hear voices on a regular basis, therefore it is a rather common "symptom" among people. But such is not the case for all who hear voices.
   Sometimes hearing voices can be disturbing; a reaction to troublesome life events: stress; emotional, physical or sexual abuse; traumatic events; electrical or chemical dysequilibria in the brain ...or even sometimes without any discernible cause.
   William James, in The Varieties of Religious Experience supposed that exposure to disturbing visions [which included hearing voices] was somehow an unexpected leap into realms that only mystics are adequately trained to experience; for others it would be a ride of complete psychic terror.
   On such occasions, it would seem understandable that the hearer might seek help in explaining their presence, or try to mask the intensity of the experience with things such as alcohol or drugs.
   In aboriginal cultures, voice hearers are often seen as visionaries; learning how to manage the voice-hearing experience delegated to working with a shaman or healer. And there are others who believe that hearing voices is clearly a spiritual matter.
   In contrast, for the most part, in urban, materialist "westernized" cultures the tendency is to turn to psychiatry and mental health to address the phenomena; a process that oft-times does dis-service to the hearer.
   The conventional mental health response is to, 1- suppress the intensity of the experience using psychotropic drugs; 2- invalidate the experience by calling it a set of "delusions" and 3- consign the voice hearer to institutional placement. Yet the drugs don't stop the experience, which continues to be quite real to the hearer [albeit blunted], and institutional placement often lacks any real ways to provide comfort and solace. Clearly a different approach is required.

   In the coming days, I shall be posting here a compendium of links that relate to this phenomena. Stay tuned.
IMAGE SOURCES: [upper right] Will Brady's photo collection; [lower left] Out-take from Terry Gilliam's dark visionary film Brazil

05 May 2009


   To the left is a chart that shows some edible mushrooms. There are many varieties. You might want to get to know them.

   Seasoned forager Steve Brill suggests some important pointers on gathering edible mushrooms at "...before you do anything..."
   Some mushroom species are very easy to identify (the chicken mushroom or sulfur shelf, the giant puffball, morels, and the chanterelle are considered so obvious that people call them the foolproof four).
   Others are quite difficult. Some species have poisonous look-alikes, others are quite distinct and have no poisonous relatives.
   Above all, learn a small number of the most unmistakable species at first, and check with an expert before you eat any wild mushrooms.

[general interest]
 • Brill's Wild Mushrooms
 • David Spahr Mushrooms of New England + Eastern Canada
 • The Mushroom Journal

[identifying mushrooms]
 • Gourmet Mushrooms + Mushroom Products
 • Missouri Dep't of Conservation's Edible Mushroom List

 • Benefits from Medicinal Mushrooms
 • Readings on Medicinal Mushrooms
 • Healing Mushrooms
 • Tom Volk's Fungi-Net

 • Chris Hobbs's Medicinal Aspects of Mushrooms

 • Mushroom Clubs of North America
 • Illinois Mycological Association
 • Mid-Hudson Mycological Society
 • Mycological Society of America
 • Mycological Society of San Francisco

 • Shroomery
 • The Vaults of Erowid

 • Photovault's Mushrooms
 • David Work's Mushroom Gallery
 • Don Wiss's Edible + Inedible Mushroom Gallery
 • About.com History of mushrooms as food
 • Erowid's Mushroom recipes
 • Wild About Mushrooms
 • Robert Rich's Wild Mushroom Cookbook

IMAGE SOURCES: [upper left] Vintage ilustration of edible mushrooms from Charting Nature; [lower right] A Morel from the Mid-Hudson Mycological Association

02 May 2009

genocide histories

Komski's remembering the Holocaust(s). In September 2002, a swiftly retired German Foreign Minister made a comparison between the tactics of Adolph Hitler and George W. Bush. I won't speak to that event [it rather speaks for itself] but it led me to do some research on the Nazi era and the mass extermination of many peoples that occurred.
      Readers will note, however, that the list below isn't just about that era but also has links to other holocausts, atrocities and acts of genocide1 that have occurred in history. Humanity cannot afford to forget any of them.

 • remember.org. An extensive and frequently updated site detailing people's recollections of the Nazi extermination camps

 • Holocaust History Project. The Holocaust History Project is a free archive of documents, photographs, recordings, and essays regarding the Holocaust, including direct refutation of Holocaust-denial.

 • The Holocaust Chronicles. "...hatred carried to the nth degree. A human story with victims and perps, heroes and villains and far too many people around the globe who remained indifferent ...even as it was being committed..."

 • Web Genocide Documentation Centre.20th century atrocities compiled and documented by University of London professor Stuart Stein

 • statistics on 20th century atrocities. What nations, which world leaders, do democracies make war on one another?

 • holocaust and genocide studies. "...It is imperative that a greater understanding of the ...roots of human cruelty, mass violence, and genocide be developed. We need to ...examine the factors which enable individuals collectively and individually to perpetrate evil/genocide and the impact of apathetic bystanders as fuel for human violence...".

 • The Genocide Research Project. The stated purpose of the site is to provide: "...a useful set of links without duplicating others' work. The sites are chosen not only for the quality of their content and their perceived utility for genocide researchers and educators, but also for the quality and quantity of other links they provide..." There's a focus on solutions, too!

 • Wounded Knee Massacre 2. Americans genocide statistics may be under-represented on other links, but that's because they only looked at 20th century stats. Here's a site on one infamous massacre in the 19th century American frontier.

 • From Wounded Knee to Afghanistan The big friendly teddy bear ain't always what it seems to be. Just in case you thought that Wounded Knee was an isolated incident, even disregarding World Wars I and II, Z-net provides a list of American incursions.

 • The Bisbee Deportation of 1917. Phelps-Dodge executives and other copper company magnates sent 1197 miners into the desert rather than negotiate a fair wage3. Though the resulting court cases against the perps (Phelps- Dodge, etcetera) went all the way to the USA Supreme Court, no one was held accountable for the acts.

 • Atrocities in the name of Revolution. Evidently an anti-Castro website, but, still, the number of events beg the question.

 • The Corporate Crime of the Century. Mother Jones magazine reports on how chemical companies dump dangerous drugs, pesticides and toxic chemical products on to unsuspecting third world nations resulting in deaths, eco-degradation and personal sorrows. While the numbers may not be as easy to tally as other forms of murder, the numbers are there, nevertheless.

 • guerrilla news network. Bringing reports on corporate crime, human rights violations, the "drug and anti-terrorism" wars. All actions requiring our attention and review in combating future acts of genocide

 • Tiergartenstrasse 4. Bringing this page full circle, this link provides the text from the plaque in front of the Berlin house where the Nazi's euthanasia program began. And the first to be exterminated were the first people deemed "unworthy of living," namely, people who were disabled, mentally retarded and mentally ill5

It may seem a surprise to see connections between mass atrocities made by tyrants and corrupt leaders and the actions of corporate executives. But, truth is, those corporations are nations unto themselves, beholden to themselves; not the United Nations, the World Courts, nor to the citizenry of landed nation-states. As long as we fail to make that connection, corporate executives [21st Century feudal rulers in my book] shall continue to act with impunity, behaving as they are accountable to no one, not even to themselves.
subject footnotes:
1- UN Secretary General's Report establishing a Commission of Experts to examine and analyse information on the evidence of breaches of the Geneva Conventions and other violations of international humanitarian law in Yugoslavia
2- This is one page from First Nations remarkably extensive links website on Native Peoples and "Issues of Consequence." Well worth the visit.
3- Facts about Bisbee is not an easy site to negotiate | Even 90 years later, Phelps-Dodge and others apparently still weild enough power to make it difficult to get the facts about their involvement in deporting free citizens who disagreed with the company about their avarice and were forcibly removed from their families and livelihoods as a result.
4- recounts from survivors: Witnesses from the Holocaust; Bisbee; Freedom from Fear Tour; The Disability Social History Project
5- The Museum of Madding Beauty | Ironically, at the same time Hitler's regime was exterminating crazy people, a famous German psychiatrist, Prinzhorn, was collecting the creative art work of his patients, for he saw within them a redemption of the insane.

29 April 2009


It doesn't really matter whether or not I believe in conspiracies; suffice it to say many people do accept conspiracy theories as unrefuted fact. No matter the POV - be it left, right, papist, anti-catholic, corporate and state elites, populist rants - conspiracy theories abound. Here are but a handful of conspiracy sites that I find interesting.

 • Above Top Secret. Quote: "the Internet's largest and most popular discussion board community dedicated to the intelligent exchange of ideas and debate on a wide range of "alternative topics" such as conspiracies, UFO's, paranormal, secret societies, political scandals, new world order, terrorism, and dozens of related topics..."

 • Axis of Corporate Evil. A classic Dubya and Big Dick Cheney are taking us all to Hell! Unfortunately, it doesn't appear to have been updated since, maybe, 2003.

 • Ayn Rand Institute. What else but a site devoted to the popularizer of John Galt; acolyte of "Objectivism" glorification of the individual and unfettered Capitalism and the so-called "free market"

 • Bilderberg; "the High Priests of Globalization." Here's one that makes a connection between the Bush family and Adolph Hitler via the secret Yale University "Skull and Bones" Society.

 • Great Dreams! From "...who killed JFK?" to "Why didn't anybody report that the collapse of the World Trade Towers on 9/11 was a controlled demolition"? A whole panalopy of late 20th Century conspiracy tales, and the evidence behind them.

 • The Illuminati. Recently popularized in films like The Da Vinci Files, this is Jesuits and International Bankers intent on destroying the world.

 • Psychic reader Ellie Crystal's Conspiracies and Mystery School Teachings. From Area 51 and Roswell to Secret Societies; but the focus seems to be more on UFO suppression ideas.

 • Reverse Panopticon. There is no privacy anymore. From the creators of Cryptome and Cartome, long dogged investigators into the murky alphabet soup of agencies like the OSS, CIA, KGB, NSA, Homeland Security. Wandering about the factual reporting fount on these other two sites, it becomes difficult to debunk conspiracy theories at all.

 • Trufax. I suspect that the originators of this site - the "Leading Edge International Research Group" do not see their perspective as based on conspiracies, as much as it is a description of actual current events. Nevertheless, there ii still a paranoic buzz here. The site's Introduction spells out what you'll find.

 • The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion. Published "anonymously" some time in the late 19th Century, The Protocols was an Anti-Semetic screed first edited and publicized in Russia in 1903 by Pavel Krushevan, the instigator of an infamous pogrom. It was published to blame the Jews for Russia's embarrassing defeat in the Russo-Japanese War. Later it was used in opposition to the Russian Revolution of 1905, the October Revolution (1917), and the peace negotiations at the end of World War I. Protocols was eventually published in English in the United States, but the bad guys became Bolsheviks. Reading just some of the chapters, like the one on preparing for power or another on controlling the Press, conjure up images of Rupert Murdoch and Cheney [again]. Gotta wonder.

IMAGE SOURCES: Top Right: Socyberty entry on "The Red Menace". It was actually once a Scott Towels advertisement; Lower Left: Gustavé Dore, an illustration from Dante's Inferno found at WikiMedia Commons

12 April 2009

aboriginal peoples + cultures

The interest in aboriginal peoples and cultures stems, for me, from the belief that "First Peoples" who remain possess a world of knowledge - from herbal medicines and healthy foods, to the rhythms and cycles of nature, and an understanding of the Spirit Realm. The conqueror cultures have worked hard to eradicate, albeit intentional [vis - the European conquest of the Americas] or by accident [e.g. exposing people to diseases from which the conquerors had become immune].
     There is still much that can be learned, and a surprising amount remaining that can be preserved so to provide humanity some much needed guidance for our future. The links here include sites by and about indigenous peoples, as well as sites that tell where to learn about the lore and skills that urban cultures so quickly dismiss as "primitive" when, in fact, they are not.
 • Action for Aboriginal Rights | AU

 • Aboriginal Arts Centre | AU
 • Aboriginal Studies + Culture | AU
 • Canadian Aboriginal Festival | CA
 • First People of the Americas | CA + US
 • National Association of
   Friendship Centres
| CA
 • Turtle Island Native Network | CA

[tribal law]
 • Tribal Law Journal | US
 • Tribal Justice Resource Center | NA

[learning centres]
 • Alba Wilderness School | CA
 • Center for Indigenous Nations Studies
 • Tom Brown's Tracker School | US
 • Wilderness Awareness School

 • Primitive Ways
 • Primitive Way's Reading List
 • Society of Primitive Technology

[other links]
 • Bill's Aboriginal Links | CA

IMAGE SOURCES: [l] Steer Head and Feathers dream catcher from True Tribal; [r] Margaret Preston, an Australian artist. Published in The Age.com.au, 15 nov 2005

10 April 2009

websites I check in on

Thought provoking reads, useful links to information & images
     This is what you'll get here. I post links and my thoughts about websites + blogs I find interesting. Entries are added according to my own curious and eccentric classification system.
     You may suggest new links using the "Comments" feature, or e-mail me. I'll review and place in a category that makes sense to me. Constructive suggestions on how I can better classify links will be appreciated, though may or may not be acted upon, depending.
     I also include some very basic technical stuff on managing web page design, such as HTML coding, color classification charts or discussions about fonts and layout.
     The intent is to be more focused than what you might have come to expect from my Blogspot Short Notes and Rondacker LiveJournal sites.
     Hope you'll find these entries useful.

     Please note: ANY efforts at inundating this links site with spammer sites, junk mail or commercials for your favorite product or cause shall be deleted and the offending party shall be barred from posting in the future. As that goes, commenters shall be expected to identify themselves when posting their thoughts, observations or opinion. No anonymous postings permitted.

collage art + artists

Writer Donald Barthelme (1831 - 1989) once said that "...the principle of collage is the central principle of all art in the twentieth century." In fact, interest in collage as a means of expression continues strong into the 21st century as well. Forthwith, here are some links to discussion of this art form as well as collagists who have become renowned.
[about collage]
 • Wikipedia on Collage

[collage websites]
 • collage art.com
 • National Collage Society

 • agraphie
 • Gèrard Bertrand - an homage to Kafka, Proust and Hitchcock
 • Michel Bezman
 • Kirsten Gran
 • Mike Koppa
 • Jonathan Talbot
 • Mitzi Trachtenberg

[postcard collage]
 • Ray Johnson
 • Post Secret - anonymous collage project

 • David Brady

 • Artchive on Joseph Cornell

 • Apostolos

 • John Chamberlain at Marfa
 • Louise Nevelson
 • Robert Rauschenberg and his Combines

[collage collectives]
 • Collage Artists of America mostly west coast
 • Global Collage