Let’s do it later, may be…

We all plan big for our future and then when the time comes, most of us fail to implement the plan. A few, brilliant and better ones, act on their plans and do what they had decided to do. New year resolutions, big promises, group-studies, managing finances, exercising, getting up early etc. are a few of the plans that suffer sad demise when “the moment” comes banging the door. The basic reason we all end up pushing the things to another time is due to the lack of self-control and the joy of on-the-spot, prompt gratification. It is also known as Time inconsistency which is one of the many traits of the human brain to value instant rewards more than the long-term ones. Ancient Greeks called this behavior Akrasia. When we make plans for our future, we imagine and envision what our future should look like and plans and aims come up, we zero in on certain tasks to be done in a future time. Now when the said “future” time comes and its time to make a decision or take an action to start something that has future pay-offs, our brains stop us from taking the said action as there is no instant gratification in doing so. The brain thinks about the present self, about the “now” of the things and this desire is for instant gratification is way stronger than the one intended for the future payoffs and our plans fail to take off. We fail ourselves, in turn. There are a few ways to delay instant gratification desires to achieve success. One of them is to have a “Design device”. It is basically planning your actions to reduce your distractions to help you focus on your plan. For instance, Hiding your Xbox at an uncomfortable place to save yourself from mindless gaming to save on your time to do something constructive. Another technique is to quit over-thinking about various aspects of your plans and just start starting to work on the plan, irrespective of all kinds of resistance in the mind. Just starting the planned work, no more thoughts or analysis. Being aware of the “instant gratification” concept, one can work on keeping it aside for focus on the future for a while. Feel free to add if you disagree.

The Sherlock Instinct

As infants we have so much wonder and amazement in our minds when we look at anything new and different. We want to explore, know and learn more. Owing to this inquisitiveness, we develop cognition, language, better understanding of our environment and learn more about human behaviour. Gradually, this inquisitiveness helps spark our interests in various subjects and in order to fathom better, we start questioning and speculating things – many a times verbally. This inclination to be investigative has got a lot to do with the way Humanity has been designed by the creator. If we didn’t have inquisitiveness at all, we still would be an enormous bunch of Hunter-gatherers or just like other mammals – Just existing to do that basic things – eat and sleep. But on the contrary, given the complexity of human brain and the memory system, we can remember, learn and reflect on meanings and intentions and evolve every day. We are all “Sherlock(s)” in our own ways. That is the reason the “Why?” is almost so irresistible to our brains. Owing to this, humans developed an amazing trait called as a Hypersensitive Agency- Detecting Device or HADD. It is a mechanism that allows humans to feel that many things in nature can act on their own or have “Agency”. (Like the predators feel an urge to hunt when they are hungry, they needn’t be told to do so). HADD shapes our belief systems inclined to “the Positive”, “the Negative” and tangents to both these aspects. But unfortunately, the way our society functions, it kills or dumbs down this inquisitive side of our brain. We start following the crowd and accept the pre-set beliefs about things, life and other humans. But on the other hand, let’s say we continue embracing our curiosity to learn how to make everything better in our lives in all aspects, I feel we can definitely add more meaning to our lives and contribute more to the society. So let’s keep Sherlock-ing around.

— Got any comments or questions you want replied? Ask away here – wordfabric@thinkingpebble.com

“Intrigue” from the Antiquity.

These intriguing Megaliths, Monoliths, Artefacts from the ancient past and weird phenomenon listed here on this page do not quite fit in the frame of conventional wisdom. Although many have been explained away with various reasons and many as hoaxes and elaborate jokes. But the “Debunked” theories are not very convincing at times. Decide for yourself. I am not sure if Megaliths were built by the Humans and for what purpose. May be they built all these megaliths with a lot of hard work or may be the ET helped. My whole purpose of blogging about these subjects is to bring it to your notice that even if there is 1% chance that these were built by humans and ET or other advanced beings helped (or ET built them entirely) in getting these built, isn’t it a proof enough that we are not alone in the Universe. Feel free to disagree as these are my personal views.

We are not very sure of the true purpose of all these megaliths but they still existed and served some purpose. Let’s ask ourselves that why would we make such things at all in the first place? You can very well say that it has been debunked but my question is how do you know that the facts stated by the debunkers are completely true? I leave it to you for your decision.

Megaliths and Artefacts:

Puma Punku Link1 Link2
Gobekli Tepe Link1 Link2 Link3
Moai Statues Link1 Link2
The Stonehenge Link1 Link2
Nazca Lines Link1 Link2
The Sunken Cities Link
Antikythera Device Link
Baghdad Battery Link
Ancient Astronauts Link1 Link2 Link3
Pakal – The Mayan God Link
Piri Reis Map Link1 Link2
Ancient Caves in Nepal Link
The Sun Temple Link1 Link2
Carnac Stones Link
Pyramids Link

Weird Phenomena and News from the Past:

Nazi encounters with the ET Link1 Link2
The Foo Fighters Link1 Link2
The Voynich Manuscript Link
The Roswell Crash 1947 Link1 Link2
Alien Abductions Link
Crop Circles Link1 Link2

These are just a few topics I have highlighted. There is a lot more!

–Got any comments or questions you want replied? Ask away here – wordfabric@thinkingpebble.com

Age old question – Are we alone in the Universe?

A recent study (published in Daily Mail) has highlighted that there is a possibility of an Earth-like planet revolving around 1 star out of every 5 stars in The Milky Way. That makes it about 40 billion Earth-like planets with a possibility of life just in our Galaxy (This number is a lot more staggering if we consider the sum of such planets in the entire Universe). Assuming that we are alone in the super-vast universe that contains trillions of galaxies and every single galaxy having billions and billions of stars, it would be extremely cocky as well as abso-damn-lutely ignorant. Given the size of the Universe, there is no logic that can prove that life originated on our planet out of the blue (Theory of Evolution has its flaws). Our Earth is about 4.5 billion years old and most evolutionists believe that when the environmental conditions became stable on earth, life originated and later evolved into various forms. It is completely illogical to rule out the possibility that similar events did take place on the other planets as well since the origin of the universe 13.5 Billion years ago. Now the big question arises, if there is life on the other planets and is capable of interstellar travel and have technology far more superior than ours (because any civilization with a technology less advanced than ours would not be able to travel to distant starts as we are still incapable of achieving that feat), why has nobody contacted us yet? The WOW signal in 1977 was the only signal that lasted for 72 seconds and apparently it was emanated by the ET. SETI has been scanning the Universe ever since but not a single beep has been heard since then. So does that mean it is the truth that we were never contacted again? Or what happened in 1977 was half the truth shared with the general masses? What if we received similar signals again but the governments covered it up? There is so much evidence of the “Weird” and “anomalies” that is usually explained away as hoaxes or random weather phenomenon. But I feel there is a lot more to such events. Vatican recently announced that we are not alone in the universe. Why did NASA lose all the interest and stopped all Manned missions to the Moon after the Apollo17 mission in 1972? Or did the secret visits to the moon take place but such information was kept away from the public knowledge and if so, why? I believe there is a lot on our planet that is a clear evidence of the contact with the ET. Overwhelming and staggering proof from the antiquity will definitely make you question the traditional knowledge we all grew up with. Cave paintings of astronauts, Antikythera device, megaliths of Puma Punku, Moia and The Stone-Henge are just a few things to challenge the idea that “we are alone in the Universe”. Civilizations far more superior than ours have existed on our planet in the remote past and who knows they still do. These are my personal thoughts and you can totally disagree with me but before doing so, please try to ponder over these questions. Again, it’s always your choice.

— Got any comments or questions you want replied? Ask away here – wordfabric@thinkingpebble.com

Singularity

Research is being carried out in attempts to harness and capture the entire essence of the soul to store it in digital form. What difference is it going to make in the world and how is it going to challenge and change the traditional wisdom. How is this technology going to affect the world and does this technology have the capability of touching lives of every individual on our globe in one or the other way?

Since the dawn of the era of humanity on this globe, man has been intrigued and equally scared of many different phenomenon like lightning, huge fires, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and more importantly death. The ancient man did not know the actual reasons behind such natural phenomena and ended up assuming that they were the result of some god’s wrath. Then, he would kneel down and pray to the gods to save him of their fury. But the times changed, the gained knowledge spread and with the advent of scientific age, we have found most of the answers and reasons behind the nature’s behaviour. We have studied and found so much about our earth, solar system and origins of life and universe itself but yet we have no conclusive evidence about why we age and die and what exactly happens to the soul after one dies. And, more importantly, the Science has not been able to define what “soul” exactly is. Soul is that one thing that separates life from death. So many famous and legendary people have come and gone leaving a mark behind but those marks are either in the form of wisdom they left behind, an invention they came up with, books they wrote, buildings and monoliths they constructed or laid the founding stones of religions, sects, games, music, machines, mathematics and so much more but that’s all that is left of them here back on this earth. Their souls departed and transcended to a place we not know where. But let’s think it to ourselves that what if it is made possible to retain the souls or the consciousness stored in some form in some kind of a digital emporium here on our planet forever and ever. That would be taking a step towards achieving immortality. This subject has been hogging the limelight from quite a while now and a considerable amount of research has already gone into the quest for living forever and the research and attempts are being funded by the likes of Sergey Brin and Dmitry Itskov.

Google started a new venture called Calico recently, with an aim to study ageing and death and, ultimately, to conquer both. Attempts have already been made to simulate the human brain by using the ultra-advanced and highly sophisticated computing. Using the fastest and the most powerful supercomputers, a total of only four rated as the best in the world, it was recently made possible to simulate the entire functioning of brain for over a second by creating 1.73 billion virtual nerve cells and 10.4 trillion synapses containing 24 bytes of memory each. Although the simulation was not all that simple as it sounds because it took 40 minutes of real “biological” time to produce one virtual second. The point here is that it is possible now to design super-intelligent machines with an ability to think, learn and reason by mimicking the cerebral cortex of the brain. And Google’s director of Engineering, Ray Kurzweil, has suggested that it will take a mere 3 to 4 decades before we could transfer the entire human mind to a computer. Such a concept is not a gamble of thoughts and highly ambitious ideas but the wealthiest of the people in the world believe it to be a cause that needs to be addressed as in the longer run, human race has to evolve to be better, never mind the virtual way. People like Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation consider death to be another corporate opponent to be outfoxed. This concept of being immortal is not new at all. There are numerous stories and legends of ancient Chinese emperors who spent lifetimes in the search of elixirs of life and many considered mercury to be that elixir. Ancient Egyptians had a little different grasp of the “Afterlife” and immortality and they believed that the departed souls go to a place of eternal bliss and they live there further. They also believed in preserving the dead bodies of pharaohs and kings in a sheer hope and anticipation, or maybe it was confidence, that the departed souls would return sometime in the future and would use the preserved or mummified bodies. The underlying concept was not very different from the present attempts to transfer the soul to machines in digital form also known as Singularity.

Now that the attempts, research and the funding with a strong interest from the most powerful people on the globe are in place, the day is not far off when we would be uploading the digital versions of our souls to the machines so that we live forever. The idea seems pretty interesting and will definitely change the human race and our perspective of croaking. Although, there are deep ramifications associated with the entire grand concept, which will be discussed later in this article, but for the moment, our scientific community is quite headstrong to achieve the feat. Now when that happens that we have successfully transferred entire consciousness of a human brain to a computer, there is a lot that is going to change for the “good”. Further, it cannot be said with a complete certainty that this “Good” stands true for everyone alike. Such an “upload” will, apparently, transcend the need for a biological body but how appealing is this concept to the humanity is debatable. Apart from that, Singularity will be enabling us to increase and expand the scope of our limited intelligence a billion-fold. Science will be able to establish a step-by-step understanding of how the brain really functions. Human mind is a really complex machine that is intriguing and mysterious. We will be able to understand how the brain thinks and what thoughts are, how it processes the electrical signals to activate the various regions which, in turn, help the brain do a million operations with so much of ease in a jiffy. We will be able to understand the co-relation between the quantum reality and dreams, origins of emotions and feelings. It hurts when our bodies suffer physical harm and we feel a sense of pain. What this sense of pain exactly is formed of is something that has been evading science for decades. We will be able to understand, learn and study it better which in turn can help in designing effective medication that would act against pain and discomfort we feel. Psychology will assume new and amazing meanings and elaborated functions in order to diagnose and curb many mental illnesses which presently are astoundingly hard to tackle with. Schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease and Dementia will be wiped off the face of the earth. The healing powers of brain can be fathomed in a better way by achieving Singularity. It’s always said that “Mind over Matter” holds the key to achieve the undoable. This phrase will be viewed in a better and brighter light of understanding of how matter behaves in response to an observation made by a person as this observation is a form of thought and energy that connects the matter with human consciousness.

Quantum physics postulates that an electron is an electron only when it is observed and otherwise it takes the form of a wave. The fundamentals of Quantum Mechanics will be taken more seriously as Singularity will lend more credibility to the already established laws and will open up a new universe of study for the humanity to get benefitted. The rewards of such an achievement will touch and affect each and every human being on the planet. People would grow up knowing that life cannot come to sudden halt just in a blink should an unlikely and non-anticipated event occurs. There would always be a possibility to live on. There will never be any chance of any physical pain as it would have been made possible to curb it using specially designed drugs which would have conquered pain in all aspects. Let us assume audaciously and outlandishly that such a “stored” consciousness can be sold for commercial and educational purposes. Then making the general masses aware of complex scientific ideas would not be all that big a deal. The likes of Albert Einstein and Nikola Tesla were considered to have the most amazing and brilliantly complex minds of all times in the recorded human history and it is said that both of these scientists were involved in classified research projects, one of them being Time and inter-dimensional travel. But all the research they ever conducted and the secret formulae they developed, all vanished the moment they died. Such a loss would never occur in the Singularity era as the consciousness of such people would have been preserved safely for further studies. Life would be completely different in such a world.

But there is always a counter-positive aspect of almost everything and this concept of Singularity is no different. There are a few questions which jump out at us with ethical and moral implications. Singularity is just a bit different from the actual biological process of cloning, except for the end result which is going to be a machine or a memory chip in the case of Singularity. Will Singularity alter the course of nature without any consequences? Death is one event that has got so many rituals and traditions woven around it. People from all around the world go to great lengths to memorialize the departed loved ones. In a few cultures, the dead are symbolically fed and taken care of so that their souls do not find the journey to destination difficult. In our culture, special prayers are arranged to facilitate the easy and peaceful exit of the soul to the Promised Land (Near-death-experiences hypothesise that such a transition-event exists). The sentiments and emotions invested in such rituals are beyond comparison and they hold a great deal of significance to bring peace to the departed, as per the age old beliefs, and mental solace to the people praying for the lost dear ones.

Now when Singularity brings about the feat of having transferred the consciousness to machines, what happens to the traditional and cultural significance of the rituals performed when it is assumed that the soul has left us to transit to another dimension to be One with the Divine, because as per the laws of Singularity, this believed inter-dimensional transition will never occur and the soul or call it consciousness will still be present around, although in a different medium (Digital). So should we humans stop mourning and grieving over the loss of the loved ones in this case as their souls did not “depart”? And should we start loving the machines with the uploaded consciousness with same affection and love as we did with the flesh and blood person when they still had a living body? Usually all of us have the propensity to anthropomorphize the objects around us and form attachments with non-human entities (like cell phones, clothes, shoes, bags, bikes etc.) but in the case of Singularity-driven world, are these machines going to assume a much more important stature because they have the souls of our lost ones uploaded to them? How well are we going to replace a physical human being and the associated epitome and embodiment of the true character with something mechanical? Or the more imperative question is that will we ever be able to do so? What kind of cultural conditioning would be required for us to come to terms with the new idea of Singularity that the machines are the new humans to us or they are replacing our loved ones after their demise? How much of the meaning will be left in the emotions generated in our hearts after-all?

Further, what is the assurance here that this technology will be doing the justice while preserving the soul(s) or consciousness? That is, what is being uploaded to the computers and digitized, is it just the exteriority of the soul or the actual consciousness in its perfect quintessence? And will the concept of Singularity actually capture everything that makes a person a personality? Because the consciousness is an essence that gets developed based on a person’s experiences, thoughts and emotions, ideas, outlook, attitude and beliefs over a period of time called Life. Consciousness has an ever-evolving nature but when it is confined to digital bytes, will it grow further or cease to exist after sometime as it cannot grow and live? If technology cannot do that, then the idea of so-called immortality lacks the punch quite a bit. So let us leave it to the time and patiently wait for the day Singularity materializes, with a great hope that life will change a lot for the universally accepted “Good”.

Shakespeare – Real or a figment of imagination?

World’s best playwrights, poems, sonnets and many other stories have been attributed to Shakespeare as the sole author. His plays have been very famous and talked about for many centuries. The literature written by him is rich with life, travel, romance, irony, jibes, morals and stories. Many of the writings of this author have been adapted to serve as the scripts of many Hollywood and Bollywood movies and have been appreciated. His plays hold a great importance even in today’s world. Now that Shakespeare has been hailed to be one of the greatest and most prolific writers the history has ever produced, it was but natural for the people to pose questions about his identity. Looking from a sensible and logical point of view, there isn’t much that can be found about his life and lifestyle. Many scholars believe that Shakespeare was born in Stratford, London and died in 1616. This man was a small time actor who did a lot of theater and could never afford to get proper university education. Now when the so called literary works of Shakespeare are read, one can easily find that there is a lot of disconnect between the actual life of the author and the life being portrayed in the writings. One can easily figure out that the author of these writings had a keen grasp of literature, language, court life, travel and royalty. But the Stratford born Shakespeare did not have the skill or knowledge to have produced the most amazing literary work in the history of English. Also, there is no solid way to link the writings to Shakespeare. There are many scholars who argue that many of these writings had “Shakespeare” mentioned on many pages which were published during his lifetime and yet there is another group that points out that nobody ever knew if that’s how Shakespeare spelled his name. The plays like Othello, Hamlet and The Tempest have many fundamental facts drawn from Aristocracy and high-end political functioning but the said man, the actor, by no means could have been the part of any aristocracy. There are many such facts that are debatable and thus there is no harm in considering and pondering over the idea that Shakespeare may not have been the flesh and blood person but a figment of imagination.

— Got any comments or questions you want replied? Ask away here – wordfabric@thinkingpebble.com

Reincarnation

Death is one of the most inevitable truths of life and no one escapes from it. All the souls ever born on the earth have departed as well. But that begs the question – where? Where do the souls go after they die and is there really life after death? Or to be more precise, is there a possibility that the departed souls get reborn again in another body? The answers to these questions have been found and there is a lot of proof available to substantiate the case. There is enough documented evidence that points out that reincarnation is for real. Many psychologists have come across patients who have narrated stories of their previous lives and for most times these stories have been found to be completely true based on the circumstantial evidence. Such patients have narrated incidents and names of the strangers and their occupation with total accuracy even though they did not ever come across the said strangers in their present lives. In one of the cases, a 7 year old child born in the United States went unconscious and was pronounced dead only to get up after a few hours. After he came back to his senses, he spoke fluent German along with his mother-tongue. He narrated the story where he told his parents and the doctors that he was a German man in his previous life that worked at a particular place and was murdered later. When the media and his parents tried to corroborate with his story, it was found to be true. This kid had never studied German, leave alone speaking fluently. One another famous case is of the famed Anne Frank who died in Nazi Germany during the holocaust. Barbro Karlen is said to be Anne’s reincarnation as Karlen has proved it with a lot evidence and stories, which only the original Anne Frank would know, that she actually is reborn again to tell the world the missed story of the young and famous miss Frank. Karlen is still alive today and is a living example of reincarnation. Further, many patients have inherited the birth marks from their previous lives. Many have born with bullet wounds. Now such evidence cannot be discarded as shoddy and waste as there is no way for a yet-to-be-born baby to get affected by bullets. There is a lot more proof in the favor of the case. So, reincarnation is really not that far-fetched an idea.

The Amazing Mind Power.

Medical sciences and the current technology have come a long way and have found many answers to the problems and questions that have bothered the humankind since eons. We have explored space, studied stars, landed on different planets, can predict the weather and earthquakes and yet there is one thing that is ever elusive and we have not been able to find answers as to how it functions entirely. It is the human brain. Despite the technological leaps and bounds, all we have been able to study and understand about the brain is a mere 20%. The rest 80% is a mystery. It has been found in individual studies that our brain is way more powerful than it may seem. Many ancient tablets and scripts that have been found from the ancient and archaeological sites stress on the same fact as well. It has been found scientifically that one can channel all the energy and focus of the brain to achieve anything one desires. In one of the studies conducted on a cancer patient who had huge lumps of tumours under his armpits and stomach, it was found that what medicines could not cure, the brain power could. A fake drug was made and was given to this patient and he was told that it was a scientifically proven and tested drug which would cure cancer in just a few days. This patient believed in the drug so much that within a few hours, his tumours melted away and he started walking around and feeling better. He was cured of cancer in completely in just a few days. But as it was a fake drug, the American Medical Association blew if off as useless and when the patient heard the news, he started believing that he could not be cured. His cancer came back and he died in three days. It was the sheer power of the brain that worked upon the cancerous cells and completely cured him. There are many other things that we take for granted but in reality, they are the most amazing things. Our brain has got the power to remember and recall events that have happened at different times. No hard drive in the world can save as much data as the brain saves during the entire lifetime. The human body is the most complex machine on our planet and the brain is the only organ in the entire body that helps in proper and most efficient functioning of the body. The power of brain can connect us with the infinite peace through meditation. No machine in the world can imagine and visualize like the brain does. Brain has got the power to take the thoughts from one point to another at speeds that can’t even be comprehended. Thus, the brain is really amazing and is full of powers and capabilities which will keep the science and scientists baffled for the ages to come.

Remote Viewing.

Humans are considered to be the most superior form of life compared to all the other life forms. We have various different abilities and many a times, a few have extra-ordinary abilities which make them distinct from the others. Remote Viewing is one such ability that uses psychic powers to describe an unseen object kept at huge distance away. The people with remote viewing abilities and can draw the images of the subject objects with a great detail. When the idea was founded in 1975 by the US military to spy on various targets using the remote viewers, it was funded to be a research worth of $20 million. But the operation was declassified in mid 90s as it could not yield the desired intelligence related results. The scientific community, as of today, looks at remote viewing with a sceptical stance. When such remote viewing experiments were conducted under controlled environments with highest scrutiny, they were not able to produce the results as promised. Many have named this science as clairvoyance or pseudoscience. In 2002, the UK government conducted secret experiments to establish the credibility of remote viewing using 18 different and fresh subjects. It was expected that the “E” and “H” fields would grow larger in terms of field-band but no such activity was recorded in the brains of the subjects and hence the experiment was abolished and declassified. But many have claimed that Remote Viewing works and it is very much possible to establish the minutest of the details about the target subjects. But the scientific community does not approve of this phenomenon and they keep it at an arm’s length. So the question remains here is that if Science does not approve of a phenomenon, does it mean it doesn’t exist at all?

Technology – The Utopian perspective.

I came across this question that “Can/Will the technology redesign itself and take off on its own?” Well, Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking strongly think it can! But there are many others who think the exact opposite and, more so, in an optimistic light. What the advent of computers did (A lot of good!) to the 20th century, machine intelligence will do a lot more than that to the 21st century and that too in thrilling ways. Al Gore and Jeff Hawkins are two of the biggest proponents of this idea. Innovation is breaking boundaries with mind-blowing implications at lightening speeds that are, yet, accelerating by the minute. “Automation Technologies” have so much latent potential that comparing them with the Humanization concept would not be a far cry from the near-future possible reality. AI available on versatile platforms, complex Quantum Computing, Computer Interfaces mimicking consciousness are all a bunch of good news subtly bordering on the Utopian premise for the planet Earth. Technology is redefining the work by connecting the people by bringing and merging the Social landscape into the Mobile, creating a smarter workforce and reinventing the education with a wider and a deeper reach. The brink of the awesome change the wave of technology has brought to us can sure make us more human, more caring, intelligent and supportive to people and the environment around us. Yes, one can argue that stakes are the highest, a flip-side of technology, being on the brink of such a change but isn’t humanity all about embracing the change and coming around to the ideas that don’t make a lot of sense to us right now? We would still be cavemen if it were not true. I feel the dystopian ideas hurled at us in movies like “Transformers” are more of warnings to exercise care while juggling with the technology. I don’t consider such ideas to be predictions of any kind.

— Got any comments or questions you want replied? Ask away here – wordfabric@thinkingpebble.com