Sunday, July 31, 2005

Nucular stuff

Hey. I'm just following in the footsteps of our Learned President. And what's the problem with a bunch of college students wearing flip-flops to the White House? If Dubya can wear cowboy boots, I think flip-flops are eminently proper.

I digress. Things are heating up in Iran. Or, more accurately, in the EU over Iran. I suspect things will be heating up here shortly, as well. Iran has declared that it will recommence converting raw uranium. Naturally, this has the EU's shorts all tied up in knots. No one's terribly excited about Iran creating products that could possibly lead to nuclear weapons, despite its protestations otherwise. Iran's track record on honesty in this area is a bit thin.

From an intellectual standpoint (and I can pretend I have one), I don't fully grasp the argument that some countries are allowed to have nuclear weapons and some are not. Who died and made US king? Or any of the other countries who have them and want to deny them to others?

I know. It's too dangerous to have so many countries with this capability, so we must limit it. Dumb argument. If it's too dangerous to have so many, or even some, countries with this capability, then no one should have it. The entire earth should play fair and get rid of them all. If you don't bring enough to share with everyone, or you aren't willing to share, then you have to put your toys away.

Simplistic argument, perhaps. But I don't see where being the bully of the world is getting us--or the EU. I'd love to think we are all imposing civility on the world. But we haven't been terribly civil ourselves, lately. So I'm missing the part where we then get to impose our rules on civility on others.

If the US and the EU want to tell other nations what to do, perhaps we should all clean house first. Stop torturing people in prison camps, hold fair elections (even in Florida), clean up the death penalty in Texas, stop outing our CIA agents, don't use Homeland Security bills as pork barrels . . . .

Spent most of the day painting my living room. Frosted Cafe. Nice walls. Sore arms. Off to bed.

Until tomorrow,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

A typical dictionary definition of hypnosis states that it is: a state that resembles sleep but that is induced by suggestion. However, anyone who has tried hypnosis (and any self respecting hypnotist) will tell you that this is a very simplistic view of the subject!
A much better description comes from the Free Online Dictionary which states that hypnosis is: an artificially induced state of consciousness, characterised by heightened suggestibility and receptivity to direction. So what does this mean and how can it be used to your advantage?
Well, the subject of hypnosis has been discussed and pondered since the late 1700s. Many explanations and theories have come and gone though science, however, has yet to supply a valid and well-established definition of how it actually happens. It's fairly unlikely that the scientific community will arrive at a definitive explanation for hypnosis in the near future either, as the untapped resources of our 'mostly' uncharted mind still remain something of a mystery.
However, the general characteristics of hypnosis are well documented. It is a trance state characterized by extreme suggestibility, deep relaxation and heightened imaginative functioning. It's not really like sleep at all, because the subject is alert the whole time. It is most often compared to daydreaming, or the feeling you get when you watch a movie or read a captivating book. You are fully conscious, but you tune out most of the outside world. Your focus is concentrated intensely on the mental processes you are experiencing - if movies didn't provide such disassociation with everyday life and put a person in a very receptive state then they would not be as popular (nor would TV advertising be as effective!). Have you ever stated that a film wasn't great because you just couldn't 'get into it'???
This works very simply; while daydream or watching a movie, an imaginary world becomes almost real to you because it fully engages your emotional responses. Such mental pursuits will on most occasions cause real emotional responses such as fear, sadness or happiness (have you ever cried at a sad movie, felt excited by a future event not yet taken place or shivered at the thought of your worst fear?).
It is widely accepted that these states are all forms of self-hypnosis. If you take this view you can easily see that you go into and out of mild hypnotic states on a daily basis - when driving home from work, washing the dishes, or even listening to a boring conversation. Although these situations produce a mental state that is very receptive to suggestion the most powerful time for self-change occurs in the trance state brought on by intentional relaxation and focusing exercises. This deep hypnosis is often compared to the relaxed mental state between wakefulness and sleep.
In this mental state, people feel uninhibited and relaxed and they release all worries and doubts that normally occupy their mind. A similar experience occurs while you are daydreaming or watching the TV. You become so involved in the onscreen antics that worries and everyday cares fade away, until all you're focused on is the TV. In this state, you are also highly suggestible. That is why when a hypnotist tells you do something under trance; you'll probably embrace the idea completely. However, your sense of safety and morality remain entrenched throughout the experience and should either of these be threatened you immediately wake!
A hypnotist can not get you to do anything you don't want to do.
So while in such a state, when we are highly suggestible and open to new beliefs, a skillful hypnotist, whether in person or via a recording, can alter life-long behaviours and even give us new ones! hypnosis

6:56 PM  

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