Tuesday, October 28, 2014

New Study Shows Cannabis Does Not Lower IQ, But Alcohol Does

A new study revealed this week shows that in spite of past claims, marijuana use does not affect IQ. The research, performed by the University College of London, was presented on Tuesday at the European Conference of Neuropsychopharmacology in Berlin.
The longitudinal study was performed on over 2,000 students. Researchers studied subjectsonce at age 8 and again at age 15born between 1991 and 1992. As the Washington Post reported, the study found
“‘No relationship between cannabis use and lower IQ at age 15,’ when confounding factors – alcohol use, cigarette use, maternal education, and others – were taken into account. Even heavy marijuana use wasn’t associated with IQ.”
This runs in stark contrast to what an internationally publicized Duke University study found in 2012. That study claimed that using marijuana in adolescence led to irreversible drops in IQan average of 8 points. Though scientists almost immediately objected to the efficacy of the Duke study, the University College of London’s findings are the most recent to prove it wrong.
As the lead author, Claire Mokrysz noted,
“This is a potentially important public health message- the belief that cannabis is particularly harmful may detract focus from and awareness of other potentially harmful behaviors.”
In fact, the only substance the study found to lower IQ was alcohol, a government authorized drug.
While cannabis, a largely prohibited plant, improves a variety of medical ailments, alcohol is mostly detrimental and addictive. Even the state, which allows alcohol consumptionacknowledges alcohol’s health risks and admits that it instigates violence.
Similarly, toxic chemicals are considered legal and safe (as are poisonous foods and pesticidesapproved by the FDA and EPA) because corporations pay for special treatment.
Meanwhile, drugs deemed dangerous by the government continue to be outlawed and punished. Marijuana is not the only one. LSD, mushrooms and MDMA are increasingly recognized as beneficial yet they remain classified as Schedule 1 narcotics, described by the DEA as
“Drugs, substances, or chemicals…defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs are the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence.”
Painkillers do not make the list, nor does alcohol.
The London study did find that among the heaviest marijuana users, test scores averaged 3% lower, cautioning that there are still drawbacks to consumption. However, as Mokrysz noted,
“The current focus on the alleged harms of cannabis may be obscuring the fact that its use is often correlated with that of other even more freely available drugs and possibly lifestyle factors. These may be as or more important than cannabis itself.”
The study’s main findings add to the growing body of evidence that marijuana is far more medicinal than it is harmful. The new evidence adds to a long list of other past claims about the plant that have been disproved: that it causes cancer, that it is a gateway drug, and that it leads to crime and delinquency, to name a few.
Regardless of how harmful any drug — legal or illegal — may be, it is clear the government is not concerned with keeping people safe. Rather, its audacity in outlawing beneficial substances and promoting more dangerous ones shows not only its tendency toward corruption, but its belief that it can control what an individual non-violently does with his or her own body.
This notion is more dangerous than any drug the government condemns or endorses, but thanks to increasing studies like the University College of London’s, perceptions and policy continue to change.
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Credit: TheAntiMedia
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author Carey Wedler and TheAntiMedia.org. Follow The Anti-Media on Facebook and Twitter to receive their latest articles. Image creditCannatraining

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Global Mental Illness - Sustainability in an Unsustainable Society

This needs to be set in stone: Global warming is not fictitious, it is real, and the realest threat we face. The Earth is running out of its resources and as a result the seed of sustainability has been planted in the minds of the people. What can we do to be more sustainable? How can we save our environment, ourselves, and the thousands of species slowly going extinct? These are all questions we ask ourselves within the context of our current society. However, trying to be sustainable in an inherently unsustainable society is like trying to stop a gaping wound with a few band-aids. It may slow the inevitable, but it will never work. A revolution of the human psyche is needed for this change, this transition we need to go through; a true facing of ourselves internally and our world externally. Our system is broken, rotten, and toxic. We cherish our economy more than we do our own habitat. We are living in a dream and it is time to wake up.

This global, external illness is the reflection of an inner conflict we all face: we have split ourselves internally. With self-awareness we think we think our thoughts and feel our feelings, when in reality, all is one process. Sentience has created a curlicue on existence and we have become lost in it. We are attached to this kaleidoscope of symbols, language, and the story of ourselves. We find ourselves to be separate, detached from the external world and thus we see mother nature, our planet, our environment as an outside alien force that is completely cut-off from our sense of self. When something is not intrinsically you, or if there is a part of yourself you don't like, your initial reaction is to get rid of it, pretend it doesn't exist, and live in a state of illusion. This is how we live with ourselves internally. We never want to be where we are, who we are, so instead, we put on a mask. The economy/culture/the system is the external worlds mask, a reflection of your own internal mask. We spend most of our experience in a state of alert-consciousness, the story of "me" in the "outside" world, all happening "inside" my head. However, this is a part, not all of experience. If you are in the part, you are not in the whole.

There is an emptiness inside all of us. We try to fill this space with everything and anything, never wanting to accept and surrender to it. This fuels our materialistic society today. You can see the effects it is having on our environment. The Great Pacific garbage patch, the giant concrete, mechanical jungles that we call cities that are suffocating and blocking the Earth's natural formation, the massive hurricanes and other horrific storms which are becoming stronger by the year, the rapid rate of deforestation taking place within the Amazon and all around the globe... something is obviously not right.

Currently, there is an illusory notion that we are separate from our environment. We feel as if we came into this world, from the outside in. We did not come into this world, we grew out of it. There is no such thing as separation when something grows from within itself. The universe was a seed (the big bang) and has grown and continues to grow. What you are experiencing at this very moment is the big bang coming on as you. 

"It's like you took a bottle of ink and you threw it at a wall. Smash! And all that ink spread. And in the middle, it's dense, isn't it? And as it gets out on the edge, the little droplets get finer and finer and make more complicated patterns, see? So in the same way, there was a big bang at the beginning of things and it spread. And you and I, sitting here in this room, as complicated human beings, are way, way out on the fringe of that bang. We are the complicated little patterns on the end of it. Very interesting. But so we define ourselves as being only that. If you think that you are only inside your skin, you define yourself as one very complicated little curlique, way out on the edge of that explosion. Way out in space, and way out in time. Billions of years ago, you were a big bang, but now you're a complicated human being. And then we cut ourselves off, and don't feel that we're still the big bang. But you are. Depends how you define yourself. You are actually--if this is the way things started, if there was a big bang in the beginning--you're not something that's a result of the big bang. You're not something that is a sort of puppet on the end of the process. You are still the process. You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are. When I meet you, I see not just what you define yourself as--Mr so-and-so, Ms so-and-so, Mrs so-and-so--I see every one of you as the primordial energy of the universe coming on at me in this particular way. I know I'm that, too. But we've learned to define ourselves as separate from it."

Alan Watts

Each election year we are given the illusion of change with the idea of voting. Pick the puppet on the left or the puppet on the right; two sides of the same broken coin. Sure, there is some small changes that may take place, but in reality what really changes is only the face while the toxic body remains, seeping into our daily lives. The economy is our worlds main focus. We must grow and achieve more and more and more. This is a reflection of the emptiness we feel inside. The economy is a collective idea, solidified by you and I. It is infinite, while the world we live upon, our precious planet that we are and grow out of is finite.  

How can something finite live within something infinite?  

It cannot.

To change the outer world while still being uncomfortable internally is madness. Stop whatever you are doing and be where you are. Sit in your sorrow, sit in your joy, sit in whatever current state of being you are in. It's not about what you want there to be or what there was, but what there is. Be humble and go slow, there is no rush. No one wants to sit with themselves in complete silence, doing nothing. We are afraid, afraid of what we might hear, of what might happen, but we are that... so there is nothing to be afraid of.

Money is both a disease and a blessing, all depending on your spot on the globe. Some people are literally dying from lack thereof while others have so much they don't know what to do with it all. We walk by people almost daily who are begging for change, begging for something to survive. Why is this? Is this inherent with this system or are they just lazy? Well, let's look at how this monetary system is made. Where does money come from? What is it? What it is, really, is nothing, an idea in which we make real. And where does it come from? Assuming you are in the United States, The Federal Reserve (which is actually not federal at all but rather a privatized banking system) sends money to the U.S. when they send them "banking notes" or really just more fictitious pieces of paper. This money they send the U.S. is literally made out of thin air. So where is the value? In debt, or more simply put, slave work: working and getting nothing back. Because of this monetary system, inherently some people will be on the wrong end of the stick. When you make something out of nothing, the only way to make it valuable is through paying it back with more money/work. All of this debt everyone is in is starting to make sense now isn't it? With this system in place, it is impossible to pay back the debt. Inflation continues to increase and the debt will grow, and inevitably there will be a collapse.MIT predicts by 2030 it will, I think sooner. Let it, we don't need it, but we need to prepare. We need to provide our own food, shelter, and water. It will be hard, but it is possible, especially with modern day technology.. Together, let us leave this rubber society in the dust. A modern day Archaic Revival (as Terrence McKenna puts it) is needed. 100% sustainable communities need to be put in place where we work together to feed, clothe, and truly be with each other. We need to work in-harmony with mother nature, not against her. We all crave a tribe to belong to, our hunter-gatherer instincts are still in-play today. And the great thing is, we can go back. Our sense of community, understanding, and overall well-being will increase ten-fold in this way of life. It is possible, it is our future, our only future. All we have to do is shift.