Giorgione's Sleeping Venus
Home | Index of all articles
Not All Pedophiles Have Mental Disorder, American Psychiatric Association Says In New DSM
In a move toward destigmatizing pedophilia, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in its updated Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), distinguishes between pedophiles who desire sex with children, and those who act on those desires.
The former group — those who want to have sex with children but whose desires are not distressing or harmful to themselves or others — is no longer classified as having a psychiatric condition in the updated DSM.
“The difference [from the last edition of the DSM] is, you’re not automatically saying that as soon as someone has a marked, unusual erotic interest that they have a mental disorder,” said Ray Blanchard, who cowrote the chapter on sexual disorders in the new DSM.
The change in the DSM, a kind of Bible among medical professionals, lawmakers, and drug and insurance companies, doesn’t just apply to pedophilia, but to several other deviant sexual desires listed in the manual. It represents “a subtle but crucial difference that makes it possible for an individual to engage in consensual atypical sexual behavior without inappropriately being labeled with a mental disorder,” explains the APA in its DSM-5 Paraphilic Disorders Fact Sheet.
The new manual specifies that in order for an atypical sexual behavior to be classified as a mental condition, a person must:
1. Feel personal distress about their interest, not merely distress resulting from society’s disapproval; or
2. have a sexual desire or behavior that involves another person’s psychological distress, injury, or death, or a desire for sexual behaviors involving unwilling persons or persons unable to give legal consent.
It’s important to note that the actual diagnostic criteria for pedophilia have not changed since the last version of the DSM, but what was once known as pedophilia is now called “pedophilia disorder,” the APA pointed out in an emailed statement to The Huffington Post.
The DSM has consistently evolved in its views on sexuality. As Jillian Keenan points out at Slate, the first version of the DSM called any kind of homosexuality a mental disorder, but in the 1960s it was changed to say that people who were comfortable being gay didn’t have a psychiatric condition.
Blanchard questioned the need to label non-criminal behavior as mental illness:
“If you take [an] individual who has a very strong erotic attraction for children, but who has never acted on it, who never would act on it, who agrees that society’s prohibition of adult child sexual interactions should be in place, do you want to say this individual has a mental disorder?”
Kacip fatimah is primarily marketed as a health tonic for pre- and postmenopausal women.
Adolf Hitler indulged in sickening sexual fetishes and even made his own niece act them out, it has been claimed.
A psychological profile compiled by U.S. spies revealed the Fuhrer was a coprophiliac – someone who gets sexual pleasure from faeces.
He reportedly forced his niece Geli Raubal to engage in disturbing sex acts.
The claims are the latest to emerge about Hitler's sex life after reports that he had a tiny penis and did actually only have one testicle.
They were made in a report called 'A Psychological Analysis of Adolph Hitler: His Life and Legend' which was compiled by the U.S. intelligence agency to find out what made him tick.
The report's author, Dr Walter C Langer, discovered the Nazi leader's bizarre fetish after gathering evidence from informers, it was reported by The Daily Star.
Dr Langer said: 'We must not suppose that Hitler gratifies his strange perversion frequently.
'Patients of this type rarely do and in Hitler's case it is highly probable that he has permitted himself to go this far only with his niece, Geli.
'The practice of this perversion represents the lowest depths of degradation.'
Miss Raubal was found dead shortly after reportedly engaging in one these sex sessions.
She had been shot with Hitler's gun, but police ruled her death as suicide.
She had, however, confessed about his fantasy to the Fuhrer's friend, Otto Strasser, who was forced to flee the country, it is believed, because Hitler suspected his secret was out.
Ernst Rohm, the head of the Nazi Brown Shirts, also once remarked about his sexual fantasies on an evening out, the report claimed.
He was later killed in The Night of the Long Knives in 1934 in a purge of SA leaders who had angered Hitler.
The report was later made into a book called 'The Mind Of Adolf Hitler: The Secret Wartime Report'.
The report also said that German film star Renate Müller once revealed that Hitler forced her to kick him as he lay curled up on the floor.
She was also found dead in a suicide.
Erectile dysfunction is mostly a vascular disease. Shockwave therapy, as commonly applied by Thai urologists, causes total neovascularization of the vital organ. The result: super erections, even at age 75.
The new ISIS terror weapon is fire.
“This is a quick option for anyone intending to join the just terror campaign,” says the latest issue of the ISIS magazine Rumiyah.
This tactic requires neither guns such as were used in San Bernadino and Orlando nor vehicles such as were used in other attacks.
“With some simple and readily accessible materials (i.e. flammables), one can easily terrorize an entire nation,” the magazine advises.
Issue #5 of Rumiyah has flames on the cover and a “Just Terror Tactics” section that has in the past called for mass shootings and the use of vehicles to mow down pedestrians. A lengthy article begins with a tribute to the “brothers” inspired by a previous issue of Rumiyah to employ vehicles at Ohio State and in Berlin. It then proceeds to detail an added method to murder innocents.
The article advises, “Throughout history and until the present day, incendiary attacks have played a significant role in modern and guerrilla warfare, as well as in ‘lone wolf’ terrorism. Such attacks have been behind the destruction of towns, neighborhoods, and public, private, and governmental property, while likewise claiming numerous lives.”
The article claims that a jihadi was responsible for a fire in Losino-Petrovsky in Russia that destroyed a three-story furniture factory and a chemical plant next to it.
“[The jihadi] taught the despicable Crusaders a lesson on just how destructive an operation of such simplicity can be, successfully,” the article says. “The fire was initiated on the ground floor, where it subsequently spread to the remaining floors and the [n]eighboring buildings and continued to burn for three whole days, causing great financial losses for the Russian Crusaders.”
The article continues, “Arson, as it applies to the just terror mujahid, is to initiate fires by using flammables to destroy the property of the Crusaders and, in some cases, kill several of them, sending them from the fire of this world to the inferno of Hellfire. All that is required of the mujahid is to acquire the flammable he wishes to use, select his target, and determine the best time for execution.”
The article notes, “Because many flammables are a part of everyday living, arson attacks are extremely difficult to prevent. Indeed, no more than a large container of gasoline (petrol) is needed for a successful attack. Of course, the gasoline can be acquired from any local gas station, where it is filled into the container. This procedure should not arouse any suspicion, as it is quite common to follow, especially when obtaining gas for a lawnmower, amongst other reasons.”
In a section headed “Claiming Responsibility for the Attack,” the article suggests “carrying along a spray paint canister or thick permanent marker and writing therewith some words on a wall or on the ground near the target declaring that the attack was carried out by a soldier of the Islamic State. “
“Also, one may prepare a simple message on a piece of paper declaring the same and briefly explain his motive or include other words that will taunt and enrage the disbelievers.” The article says. “The paper can then be taped to a brick and then thrown through the window of an occupied property close to the scene of the attack.”
The article emphasizes, “Arson attacks should in no way be belittled. They cause great economic destruction and emotional havoc and can be repeated very easily. Even if such attacks do not always result in the killing of the enemies, Allah has promised to reward the mujahid for simply harming and enraging them. “
“Allah does not allow the reward of good doers to be lost,” the article ends by saying.
The article offers a photo of the Dallas Baptist Church. ISIS is not likely bothered that Pastor Robert Jeffries of this Texas megachurch once denounced homosexuality as “filthy… degrading… beyond description” or that he termed Catholicism “Satanic.” But Jeffries has also denounced Islam as an “evil, evil religion” that promotes pedophilia.
“A popular Crusader gathering place waiting to be burned down,” reads the caption of the photo of the church.
The article further features a photo of a raging structural fire being battled by members of the Fire Department of New York, who are actual good-doers and the very opposite of ISIS murderers. The blaze is almost certainly one in Lower Manhattan in March 2015 that was the result not of arson but of a gas explosion attributed to an illegal and uninspected connection made by a landlord.
An off-duty FDNY firefighter named Mike Shepherd happened to be eating lunch around the corner at the time of the blast. He had also been off-duty on Sept. 11, 2001, and on that morning he had hurried down to the Twin Towers, where he joined in saving lives. He at one point pulled off his shirt to clean the wound of an injured firefighter, revealing the big “S” tattooed on his chest, which seemed to one person he rescued during the second tower’s collapse to stand not for Shepherd, but for Superman.
Fourteen years later, Shepherd had come from Brooklyn to Manhattan to answer a hankering for corned beef and cabbage. He had just stepped outside the eatery to take a photo for a tourist couple when he heard the explosion. He did not hesitate for even a heartbeat before he scrambled around the corner and raced up to the burning building. He clambered up the fire escape on the front amidst flames and suffocating smoke.
“You got to get down, the fire is getting big!’” people called from the street below.
Nobody could have been more different from a death-dealing jihadi than Mike Shepherd as he climbed from floor to floor, checking to ensure nobody was trapped inside, risking his own life just on the chance he might be able to save somebody else. He continued until he reached the top floor and only then descended.
He was not a lone wolf, but a lone angel.
Sirens filled the air as other angels raced to the scene, all of them rushing to risk their own lives to save others. The first of them were arriving just as Shepherd returned to the sidewalk. The building collapsed eight minutes later. The one next to it collapsed two minutes after that.
On Sunday, Shepherd got a call informing him that the ISIS magazine seemed to have used a photo of the 2015 fire and of his fellow firefighters battling it. Shepherd spoke of a dear friend and FDNY legend, Capt. Patrick Brown, who died in the 9/11 attack. Shepherd recalled earlier days when Brown would talk to him about the essentials of being a firefighter.
“You aren’t afraid, you got compassion, you got kindness,” Shepherd said.
And therein are the makings of the best kind of angels, who stand ready to face anything, including the latest evil from ISIS.
It is the secret dream of every Swedish or German woman to marry a black men, or at least have sex with a black man. Every smart young African man should migrate to Europe. Free money, nice house, good sex!
A lingerie model has gone under the knife to get a "designer vagina" to resolve a painful problem with her genitals.
Tracy Kiss, 29, endured pain every single day, whether she was walking along the street, working out or even sitting down.
The single mother-of-two was left fearing she had "deformed" genitals, but a doctor told her the problem was down to excess skin and recommended growing her pubic hair out.
Tracy, who opened up about the problem on 5STAR's Don't Tell The Doctor, chose to undergo surgery instead as she feared the look would not go down well in the modelling world.
Seeking the advice of Doctor Belinda Fenty on the new show, the Buckinghamshire native revealed how she feared her vagina was "deformed".
Speaking to the doctor, who works in gynaecology and antenatal medicine, at her home, Tracy explained how the intimate issue affected her - saying she often had to awkwardly adjust herself in public to try and alleviate the pain.
After attempting to self-diagnose using the web, the model admitted that she had been left scared after viewing a string of responses, choosing instead to seek a definitive answer.
"I’ve only seen [my vagina] when I took a photo to see where the pain was coming from, I was so surprised really in the difference in size and shape and it looks like it’s deformed," she told the programme.
"I think I have excess skin, but I don’t know what to compare it to see how much."
But Doctor Fenty put her fears to rest as she explained the cause of the pain following an examination.
The medical professional told Tracy: "It does not look deformed. The left side looks bigger than the right side, but that is absolutely within the normal range but that’s probably what’s giving you your problem.
"I can see that your inner lips are hanging lower than your outer lips, that is definitely what it going to be causing your problems."
Reassuring the model that she wasn't suffering from any abnormalities, the doctor suggested that Tracy grow out her bikini line to provide a bit of cushioning.
"'I do lingerie modelling and I don’t know how well that would go down," explained Tracy.
"I already think I have quite a big bulge in the skin and think if I have a big bush of hair it would look quite obvious in lingerie."
Choosing instead to take a more drastic approach to solving her issue, she opted to undergo a labiaplasty.
The procedure, also known as vulval surgery, involves the removal of excess skin from the vagina lips.
Heading to eminent cosmetic and reconstructive surgeon Angelica Kavouni's Harley street clinic, Tracy went under the knife.
Staying awake for the procedure, Tracy had a local anaesthetic, while the surgeon seared off the small piece of flesh that had been negatively affecting her.
Despite the painful post-op recovery period, the hopeful model said: "I will get my life back and it's more than worth it."
Male feminists are traitors. For women to be feminists is somehow understandable. They want power. Everybody wants power. But male feminists are traitors. Treat them as such. For a list of male feminists, see here.
The Shulgins first came to my attention in 1998 when I judged an essay contest for MIT students asked to forecast science’s future. My favorite essay proclaimed that research into mind-expanding drugs represents science’s most promising frontier. The essay included several pungent quotes about the potential of psychedelics from someone named Alexander Shulgin. He complained that “our generation is the first, ever, to have made the search for self-awareness a crime, if it is done with the use of plants or chemical compounds as the means of opening the psychic doors.”
Alexander “Sasha” Shulgin, I learned later, was a top-rank researcher for Dow Chemical in 1960 when he ingested a psychedelic compound—mescaline—for the first time. Shulgin found the experience so astonishing that he devoted the rest of his career to psychedelic chemistry. He left Dow in 1966 and supported himself thereafter by consulting, lecturing and teaching. Working out of a laboratory on his ranch east of San Francisco, he synthesized more than two hundred novel psychotropic compounds.
Shulgin tested these substances and others on himself and a group of trusted friends. He and his fellow “psychonauts” took meticulous notes on their research sessions. They rated their experiences according to a scale invented by Shulgin. It ranged from a minus sign, which represents no change, up to plus four (written as ++++), which is a sublime, potentially life-changing, “peak” experience.
There were a few rules for the sessions. Subjects could not be taking any medication, and they had to refrain from ingesting any other drugs for at least three days before the session. If someone said, “Hand in the air” while raising her hand during a trip, that meant she wanted to discuss a serious “reality-based concern or problem” (for example, the smoky smell in the kitchen). Sexual contact was prohibited between people not previously involved.
“Of course, if an established couple wishes to retire to a private room to make love, they are free to do so with the blessings (and probably the envy) of the rest of us,” Shulgin once remarked.
In the late 1980s, Shulgin was left unsettled by a biography of renegade psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich. Reich invented the “orgone machine,” a metallic box that he claimed could heal those who lay within it. Beginning in the late 1940s, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration pressured Reich to stop prescribing his orgone machine. When Reich refused, federal officials imprisoned him. Reich died in prison in 1957, and the Federal government destroyed all of his papers.
Haunted by Reich’s tragic story, Shulgin vowed that he would not suffer a similar fate. Although he had written about his research for peer-reviewed journals, the bulk of his findings were confined to his personal notes. He ended up pouring his knowledge into a PIHKAL: A Chemical Love Story. This remarkable book is a fictionalized autobiography written by Sasha and his wife Ann, a writer, lay psychotherapist, and enthusiastic collaborator in Sasha’s psychedelic research. PIHKAL is an acronym for “phenethylamines I have known and loved.” Phenethylamines are a class of natural and synthetic compounds, some with powerful psychotropic properties.
The best-known naturally occurring phenethylamine is mescaline and the best-known synthetic one is methylenedioxymethylamphetamine, as known as MDMA or Ecstasy. Although MDMA was first synthesized in the early twentieth century, Shulgin is credited with having drawn attention to its unusual psychotropic properties in the 1970s.
The first half of PIHKAL, called “The Love Story,” was narrated alternately by Sasha, known in the book as "Shura Borodin," and by Ann, whose alter ego is "Alice." Each recounts how they met and fell in love in the mid-1970s after their previous marriages dissolved. The book is in part a sexually and psychologically explicit love story involving two intelligent, cultured, Bohemian protagonists. What sets PIHKAL apart from comparable romantic memoirs is its account of Shura’s initiation of Alice into his circle of psychonauts, and its detailed descriptions of their experiences with DOM, 2C-T-4, and other compounds synthesized by Shura.
That is Part I of PIHKAL, which covers 450 pages. Part II, “The Chemical Story,” which runs for another 528 pages, offers recipes for 179 phenethylamines and accounts of the physiological and psychological effects at various dosages.
“No one who is lacking legal authorization should attempt the synthesis of any of the compounds described in the second half of this book,” the Shulgins warn in a “Note to the Reader.” But they also declare that investigations of the scientific and therapeutic potential of psychedelics “must be not only allowed but encouraged. It is essential that our present negative propaganda regarding psychedelic drugs be replaced with honesty and truthfulness about their effects, both good and bad.”
The Shulgins published PIHKAL under their own imprint in 1991. Six years later they released TIHKAL, for “tryptamines I have known and loved.” Tryptamine compounds include the well-known psychedelics psilocybin and DMT and the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is also known as 5-hydroxytryptamine. Like its predecessor, TIKHAL is divided into two parts. Part I tells more tales from the personal life of “Shura” and “Alice.” Because they are now happily married, the narrative focuses less on romantic episodes than on psychedelic ones. Alice discusses her use of MDMA in her therapeutic practice. Part II consists of recipes for and commentaries upon 55 tryptamines.
TIKHAL is more overtly political than its predecessor, and it alludes to legal tribulations that the Shulgins endured after their first book was published. In 1994, agents from the local branch of the Drug Enforcement Administration carried out a surprise inspection of Sasha’s laboratory. Shulgin’s research has always been legal; the Drug Enforcement Administration has licensed him to do research on scheduled compounds. But these agents accused him of violating various “new” regulations—and implied that he was manufacturing drugs for sale. Although Shulgin was never indicted, his alter ego wonders in TIHKAL whether this visit is just the beginning of a harassment campaign against him.
Before flying to California, I contacted the Shulgins by phone to arrange our meetings. Sasha’s directions to his home are detailed and meticulous, just like his recipes for synthesizing hallucinogens.
I rumble down a dusty dirt road in the foothills east of San Francisco to a rambling, tree-shaded, one-story home, with a few outlying sheds. Sasha is a big, barrel-chested, rugged man, with a hoary, leonine beard and mane. Ann has a deeply lined face, and eyes whose downward slant imparts empathy rather than melancholy.
Sasha gives me a tour of the ranch. A room crammed floor-to-ceiling with books and journals in metal bookcases is the library.
“If it’s on psychedelics,” he boasts, “I’ve got it.”
A room down the hall contains a magnetic-resonance imaging machine, a mass spectrometer, and other instruments for performing chemical analysis. “This is a filthy room that I call the clean room,” Sasha says. He adds, squinting at a cobweb-veiled skylight, that the spiders keep down the bug population.
As we stroll down a path to Sasha’s lab, he points out plants: shocking-pink lilies, a bay tree, several gnarled pine, various cacti, and a weedy plant that Sasha identifies as Salvia divinorum—which contains what may be the most potent naturally occurring psychedelic compound known to science.
On the door of his laboratory--an ivy-draped, cinder-block hut--is the familiar icon warning of the presence of radioactive materials. Another sign reads: “NOTICE: This is a research facility that is known to, and authorized by, the Contra County Sheriff’s office, all San Francisco DEA personnel, and the State and Federal EPA authorities.”
Within the lab is a dusty, twilit jungle of exotic glassware, tubing, racks, clamps, and labeled bottles. The lab’s pungent, sulfuric odor stirs up long-buried childhood memories in me of playing mad scientist with my chemistry set. A voodoo doll hangs from a test-tube rack. A friend gave it to Sasha to improve his luck with difficult copper-based experiments. It worked for a while, then it didn’t, Sasha says.
Back at the house, Ann makes sandwiches in the kitchen while Sasha and I sit in an adjoining room crammed with books, papers, potted plants. A picture window looks across a valley at a great brown mound: Mount Diablo, Sasha informs me. Pinned to one wall is a piece of yellow tape that reads: “SHERIFF’S LINE: DO NOT CROSS.” That is a memento of a 1998 raid by the local Sheriff’s department, which suspected Sasha of manufacturing methamphetamine, also known as “crystal” or “ice.” After a few telephone calls, the agents apologized for the misunderstanding and left the Shulgins in peace.
A pattern emerges early on in my conversation with Ann and Sasha. At one point I ask, Do you think the legal and political climate for psychedelics is improving? No, Sasha replies, shaking his head. If anything, things are getting worse. He is appalled by a recent federal law giving police power to confiscate property of those accused of breaking drug laws.
“I have a different view on that,” Ann calls out from the kitchen. She is encouraged by the fact that commentators, or at least intelligent ones, increasingly refer to the “failed” war on drugs. “Everyone knows this thing has not only failed; it has made the drug problem actually worse,” she says. “If we get one politician with courage, that's all it's going to take to break the whole thing apart and start changing things.”
“She's optimistic, I'm pessimistic,” Sasha summarizes. “We balance out very nicely.”
Later, Ann says she firmly believes in reincarnation. Sasha finds reports about people remembering past lives interesting but ultimately unconvincing. Ann intuits a divine intelligence guiding the cosmos, while Sasha is skeptical. She is the romantic empath, he the hard-headed rationalist. She is the psychotherapist, he the chemist. But they are unfailingly gracious toward each other. When Ann interrupts Sasha to disagree with him, as she does often, he seems less irritated than charmed.
Sasha likes to turn my questions back on me. What do I mean by "mysticism"? By "God"? When I ask if he meditates, he replies that it depends on my definition of meditation.
“Are you doing things with your mind, or are you undoing things?" he asks. "Structuring, or destructuring? Assembling and analyzing, or disassembling and avoiding?”
Sasha tried Zen but found no benefit in it. “The idea of sitting there quietly and voiding your mind of any thoughts, of any process, of turning off the record, just turning the amplifier not down but off--I find it frightening! I don't see what the virtue is. You’re in absolute, thoughtless, mindless space for about twenty seconds. And I say to myself, ‘Why the hell am I doing this?’”
If meditation means total immersion in an activity, being absorbed in the moment, Sasha continues, well, he does that whenever he works in his laboratory. “I consider that meditation, but very active,” he says. “For me that's a treasure.”
When I ask Sasha how many drug trips he has taken in all, he says it depends on how I define “trip.” When exploring a new compound, he starts with very small amounts to test for potency and gradually increases the dose.
“Not all of these were trips, and a lot of them were just exploring.” He has taken compounds that are at least potentially psychoactive three or four times a week for more than 40 years, but only a few thousand of those experiments were genuine trips.
Their psychedelic days are over, Sasha and Ann assure me. Ann used to give MDMA to her psychotherapeutic patients, but she stopped after the drug was outlawed in 1986 under the so-called Designer Drug Act. The team of psychonauts that had tested compounds concocted by Sasha has disbanded. Sasha's research continues; one of his current projects involves searching for new antidepressants. But he no longer either ingests or synthesizes psychedelics.
Like other spiritual practices, psychedelics are a two-edged sword, Sasha emphasizes. They may help us become more compassionate and wise, but they may also lead to ego-inflation or worse. He poses a hypothetical question: What if a psychedelic drug helps an evil person accept his evil nature? Would that be a positive step?
“It's not a panacea,” he warns.
I ask if they believe in God. Define God, Sasha demands. I mumble something about a creative force or intelligence underlying the design of the universe.
“I believe the concept of God is absolutely unnecessary,” Sasha declares.
“Unnecessary?” Ann responds, staring at him.
“That’s a straight answer,” Sasha growls. “Things are what they are.”
“Do you think the concept of a purposeful universe is nonsense?” Ann presses him.
“It's nonsense. Yeah,” Sasha replies. “I don't think it's created by a divine force with a beard.”
No one of any intelligence, Ann tells her husband sternly, takes that old patriarchal image of God seriously any more. Turning back to me, she says she believes that some sort of God or intelligence or consciousness or something underlies material reality, but it is not distinct from us.
“We’re all parts of it, expressions of it. So we are it.”
Ann has a friend who experiences God as pure love. “That brings out the cynicism even in non-cynics,” Ann grants. How can anyone believe that God is love, given how suffused nature is with pain and suffering? The answer, Ann suggests, is that our suffering is somehow a necessary part of our development and learning.
“It's a little bit like watching your one-year-old experimenting,” Ann says. When they fall down and cry, “you sympathize, because they are having a little bit of pain on their bottom. But you realize that that is a step toward growing up.” Psychedelics, Ann says, can help you see things from this cosmic perspective.
Sasha and Ann both reject the notion of enlightenment as a final state of mystical knowledge. There is no final state, Sasha says, only a never-ending process. Ann agrees. She has had a few flashes of what Zen Buddhists call satori, both in psychedelic visions and in lucid dreams. “But they are not a destination. They are a reminder.”
I say that psychedelics have drawn me in two opposite directions: They can make me feel blissfully connected to all things, or alienated and alone. Which experience is truer?
“The place I think the Buddhists try and get you to,” Ann responds, “is right on the knife edge between the two. That's where the truth is. But don't ever forget that the truth of the universe changes second by second. It's not the same universe it was when we sat down at this table.”
Our development, our learning, never stops, Ann says. “You learn in your sleep, from conversations. You learn unconsciously, consciously. You learn from every book you read and every trip you take,” she says. “You're experiencing and taking in and changing as a result all the time, and yet you remain the same, essentially.”
Sasha gives me advice that has helped get him “through many years, and will get me through a few more”: Never lose your sense of humor or take yourself too seriously.
“The laughing Buddha is your best guide,” Ann adds. “What the heck is he laughing about? You can't explain that logically, but you can get into that state. And the final answer you're looking for is the knife edge, because both exist: that terrible darkness, and that absolute life.”
I ask whether their psychedelic experiences have helped them come to terms with their mortality. Ann says her psychedelic experiences have bolstered her faith that “the mind, consciousness, almost certainly exists outside of the body” and will survive death. After her brother died unexpectedly of a heart attack a year ago, she was overcome by grief. But when she viewed her brother’s body before he was buried, her grief gave way to a strange joy, as she felt her brother’s intelligent, humorous presence still surrounding her.
Ann has much she wants to accomplish before she dies, but otherwise she does not fear death. “I’ve never believed there was nothing on the other side,” she says. “It doesn't make any sense. We are continuing streams of energy. Now the form you take afterwards, the form of the consciousness, that's open to some question. But I have a feeling that we all know, because we all have the unconscious memory of having gone through it many times before. I think it is really a going home. I think it will be familiar as soon as you get to the door.”
Sasha says his view of death keeps evolving. As a young man, he believed that when you die, that's it; your consciousness is extinguished. In middle age, his fear of death became so acute that it complicated his research on psychedelics.
Now, at the age of 74, he does not exactly look forward to death, but he no longer fears it. Speaking quietly, calmly, Sasha says he views death as “another transition, another state of consciousness. Admittedly it's one I've not explored, but then again, any new drug is one you've not explored.”
Of all emotions, those negative are the most real. If you hate, you know that you are healthy. Your hormones are in balance if you can still imagine how you would inflict a slow, painful death on your enemies. Love isn't an emotion really but rather a mixed bag of feelings, with selfish desire a prominent component. Of any positive expression of the human mind, sympathy is probably the most genuine, though it may come with rage towards those whose victim is the target of our sympathy. ---
MUMBAI: At a time when voices of dissent against khatna or female genital mutilation (FGM) performed on little girls in the Dawoodi Bohra community are getting stronger, a group of six Bohra women, including two doctors, have formed a group called Dawoodi Bohra Women for Religious Freedom (DBWRF) in support of female circumcision.
While the subject is still being debated in legal and medical circles in India, the involvement of two doctors as founders of the group endorsing khatna or khafz - a procedure where a pinch of skin from the clitoral hood of girls between the ages of six and twelve is sliced off on religious grounds, in silence and secrecy - can warrant action if brought to the attention of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), Dr KK Aggarwal, national president of the IMA, told TOI on Thursday.
"DBWRF has been formed to give voice to mainstream Dawoodi Bohra women who have been taken for granted as a community. We are here to say that we have a right under the constitution to practise something that is harmless. We don't need a law that victimises a minority community," claimed Dr Fatema Jetpurwala, a homeopath and specialist in neuro-developmental disabilities at Saifee Hospital who is among the founders alongside Dr Alefiya Bapai, a gynaecologist and laparoscopic surgeon at Saifee Hospital; Nafisa Kagalwala, a teacher; Batul Ratlamwala, a home chef; Rashida Diwan, an educator; and Johra Attarwala, a counsellor.
The involvement of doctors in endorsing the act "goes against medical ethics" Aggarwal said. "IMA is a signatory to the World Medical Association's policy cleared at Taipei in October 2016. We condemn the practice of genital mutilation or cutting of women and girls, regardless of the level of mutilation. It is not scientific and we oppose the participation of physicians in these practices," he said.
Although DBWRF believes religion gives them the freedom to practise the custom and offers reasons for its continuation, "these reasons do not justify the considerable damages to a woman's physical and mental health in the long run", said Dr Duru Shah, scientific director of Gynaecworld in Mumbai. "There is no evidence-based material available that talks about the utility of female circumcision but enough to prove that it harms... No doctor should practise it," added Aggarwal.
Aggarwal said, "If I read a report or someone raises a complaint about a doctor propagating FGM, IMA will take it up. The doctor will have to show institutional permissions and offer scientific explanations since it is not an established procedure. We will also refer the matter to the ethical committee of the Medical Council of India for further probe."
While international organisations such as WHO and countries like the US, UK, Australia and some African nations are using laws to restrict, regulate, or ban the practice considered an extreme form of human rights violation, Jetpurwala insists 'female circumcision' and 'FGM' are different things. "Khafz is harmless and should not be mixed up with FGM. It is a travesty of justice to call khafz, FGM," reasoned Jetpurwala. According to DBWRF, the removal of a speck of superficial skin is a "simple gentle process in which there is negligible if any, pain". She claims that it is done to "satisfy the religious requirement of taharat (religious purity)" and argues that female circumcision is equivalent to male circumcision, which Shah and Aggarwal dismiss.
"Female circumcision has no medical benefit unlike in boys where complications may occur if the foreskin is not removed. In fact, many outside the community are getting circumcised to lower the risk of cancer," said Shah. In contrast, research reveals grave and permanent damage to health, including haemorrhage, infections, urinary retention, injury to adjacent organs, shock and severe pain, pointed out Aggarwal. "Long-term complications include severe scarring, chronic bladder and urinary tract infections, urologic and obstetric complications, apart from psychological and social problems," he added.
DBWRF's theories refute every line of reasoning that has surfaced in the anti-khatna movement in the last two years. "We do not accept that female circumcision is a mutilation. It is a harmless procedure and as such should not be termed FGM," reads DBWRF's explanation on their website.
Masooma Ranalvi, who was one of the first to bring the issue to light with her personal experience of undergoing khatna at seven, says: "It is shocking that educated people especially doctors after taking a Hippocratic Oath are supporting something that is in violation of that code. Not only are they tampering with what is God given but also committing a form of sexual assault."
It is the secret dream of every Swedish or German woman to marry a black men, or at least have sex with a black man. Every smart young African man should migrate to Europe. Free money, nice house, good sex!
Aim: To study the effect of Butea superba on erectile dysfunction (ED) in Thai males. Methods: A 3-month randomized double-blind clinical trial was carried out in volunteers with ED, aged 30 years ~ 70 years, to evaluate the therapeutic effect of the crude preparation of Butea superba tubers on ED. Results: There was a significant upgrading in 4 of the 5 descriptive evaluations of the IIEF-5 questionnaire. Estimation of the sexual record indicated that 82.4 % of the patients exhibited noticeable improvement. Haematology and blood chemistry analysis revealed no apparent change. Conclusion: The plant preparation appears to improve the erectile function in ED patients without apparent toxicity.
White Kwao Krua (Pueraria mirifica) is a Thai phytoestrogen-rich plant that has been used for a long time as a herbal medicine and its chemical contents [1, 2], reproductive physiology [3, 4] and clinical application  have been well studied. The related plant, Red Kwao Krua (Butea superba), is abundantly distributed in the Thai deciduous forest and has been popular among Thai males for the purpose of rejuvenation and increasing sexual vigor . The tuberous roots of Thai B. superba were found to contain flavonoid and flavonoid glycoside with cAMP phosphodiesterase inhibitor activity as well as sterol compounds, including b-sitosterol, campesterol and stigmasterol . However, the Indian B. superba stem contains flavone glycoside  and flavonol glycoside  with no reports on its use for male sexual purposes. It was demonstrated that coumarins from Cnidium monnieri exhibited a vasodilation effect on animal corpus cavernosum , which opened the possibility to develop this plant into a product for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED). B. superba might exhibit a similar effect as it contains a high cAMP phosphodiesterase inhibitor activity, which was directly related to corpus cavernosal vasodilation.
ED is physically and psychologically a key sexual problem in andropause. A Thai traditional medicine with B. superba as a major ingredient has long been accepted as an effective treatment of ED. We therefore carried out a randomized, double blind clinical trial in Thai males with the crude preparation of B. superba to evaluate its effect on ED treatment.
2 Materials and methods
2.1 Crude plant preparation
Fresh tubers of B. superba were collected from Lampang Province, cleaned, sliced into pieces, completely dried in a hot air oven, ground into fine powder, passed through 100 mesh sieves and finally filled into capsules with the net filling amount of 250 mg/capsule. Tapioca starch of the same weight was filled into the same type of capsule that served as the placebo.
2.2 Volunteers and treatment
Thirty-nine non-alcoholic Thai males, aged 30~70 years, having a fixed sexual partner and a history of ED for at least 6 months were recruited. They were divided into a treated (n=25) and a placebo group (n=14) at random and took no other ED treatment during the trial. The volunteers had a completed blood cell count and a blood chemistry analysis before and after the trial, including haemoglobin, haematocrit, white blood cells, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine phosphate, calcium, SGOT, SGPT, cholesterol, sugar and blood testosterone levels. They were verbally informed about the details of the drug and the study, including the consumption of 2 capsules per day of either the drug or the placebo at a double-blind manner during the first 4 days and 4 capsules per day afterwards for a total of 3 months. Written informed consent was obtained. The volunteers had interview appointments every 2 weeks to fill out the IIEF-5 questionnaire and received the next batch of capsules.
2.3 Statistical analysis
The results were expressed as meanSD. Pair t-test was used for analysis of the test results and P<0.05 was considered significant.
Seventeen volunteers in the treated group completed the 3-month trial period. Eight volunteers dropped out between week 2 and 4. Nobody in the placebo group returned to fill out the IIEF-5 questionnaire and receive the second batch placebo capsules since the beginning of week 3.
The background data of the 17 volunteers completed the course were shown in Table 1. It can be seen that most of them were 40 years ~ 69 years of age and 7 were complicated with other systemic diseases.
There were 3 volunteers with diabetes mellitus, 2 with hypertension, 1 with heart disease and 1 with hyperthyroidism (Table 1). They were among the volunteers with ED improvements.
Eight tested volunteers dropped out between 2~4 weeks of the trial. This was mainly due to travel inconvenience as their residence area was far from Bangkok where the trial was conducted. The complete loss (100 %) of the placebo volunteers should be the consequence of total uselessness of the tapioca starch and may imply that there is no psychological effect that could possibly created by the use of the placebo. This then further implies that the patient response to the B. superba capsule should be derived from its pharmacological rather than psychological influence. The trial results were far different from those with sildenafil, which could elicit a high percentage of positive psychological response .
Haematology and blood chemistry analyses showed no significant change. It meant that all relevant functions were not disturbed by 3 months consumption of 1000 mg/day B. superba.
The IIEF-5 questionnaire and sexual record indicated a significant improvement in ED patients taking the drug. The authors believe that B. superba may act primarily by increasing the relaxation capacity of the corpus cavernosum smooth muscles via cAMP phosphodiesterase inhibition  and may also affect the brain, triggering the improvement of the emotional sexual response. It is interesting to note that patients with additional health problems, such as diabetes mellitus, hyper-tension, heart disease and hyperthyroidism, responded satisfactorily to B. superba.
An interesting aspect is the study of B. superba as a phytoandrogen food supplement for reproductive health in normal males. The plant, with a similar action to Cnidium monnieri , could be prepared as capsules, tablets or beverages for the treatment of ED in the peri-andropausal males and in the males as a whole. The paper is another trial on the application of plant products to promote the reproductive health in the males.
Feminism in Europe makes second-generation male Muslim immigrants suicide bombers. Only the patriarchy as a social and political system can achieve justice.
Recent killings in Paris as well as the arrival of hundreds of thousands of mostly Muslim refugees in Europe have drawn renewed attention to the continent’s Muslim population. In many European countries, including France, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, concerns about growing Muslim communities have led to calls for restrictions on immigration. But just how large is Europe’s Muslim population, and how fast is it growing?
Using the Pew Research Center’s most recent population estimates, here are five facts about the size and makeup of the Muslim population in Europe:
1 Germany and France have the largest Muslim populations among European Union member countries. As of 2010, there were 4.8 million Muslims in Germany (5.8% of the country’s population) and 4.7 million Muslims in France (7.5%). In Europe overall, however, Russia’s population of 14 million Muslims (10%) is the largest on the continent.
2 The Muslim share of Europe’s total population has been increasing steadily. In recent decades, the Muslim share of the population throughout Europe grew about 1 percentage point a decade, from 4% in 1990 to 6% in 2010. This pattern is expected to continue through 2030, when Muslims are projected to make up 8% of Europe’s population.
3 Muslims are younger than other Europeans. In 2010, the median age of Muslims throughout Europe was 32, eight years younger than the median for all Europeans (40). By contrast, the median age of religiously unaffiliated people in Europe, including atheists, agnostics and those with no religion in particular, was 37. The median age of European Christians was 42.
4 Views of Muslims vary widely across European countries. A Pew Research Center survey conducted this spring in 10 nations found that in eastern and southern Europe, negative views prevailed. However, the majority of respondents in the UK, Germany, France, Sweden and the Netherlands gave Muslims a favorable rating. Views about Muslims are tied to ideology. While 47% of Germans on the political right give Muslims an unfavorable rating, just 17% on the left do so. The gap between left and right is also roughly 30 percentage points in Italy and Greece.
5 As of 2010, the European Union was home to about 13 million Muslim immigrants. The foreign-born Muslim population in Germany is primarily made up of Turkish immigrants, but also includes many born in Kosovo, Iraq, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Morocco. The roughly 3 million foreign-born Muslims in France are largely from France’s former colonies of Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia.
If you are still invested in the real estate of European cities, get out! A terrorist attack with chemical weapons will happen. And it won't be just one. Chemical weapons are just so easy to produce.
Home | Index of all articles