â–¶ Why We Need Goatherding in the Digital Age: Doug Fine at TEDxABQ – YouTube

Just watching Doug Fine speak and hear him exhale with bliss from envisioning the next morning tells me that a lot of healing potential is in this kind of lifestyle. And I’ve always been drawn to the big outdoors for as long as I can think, even as a young boy. A buddy would come by and we’d spend hours on end venturing out into the surrounding woods and communities on our bicycles, oftentimes finding fields of corn, sneaking in and treating ourselves to a little mid afternoon post-dessert snack while chatting and dreaming away, never thinking any longer into the future than the time we were expected back for supper. To be a child again… 🙂 Oh, I found this line of Doug’s presentation to ring very true for me: “We are every human being that’s ever been.” I think, he touched upon a very profound truth here. But see for your kindly inclined selves 🙂 (He’s quite entertaining!)

â–¶ Why We Need Goatherding in the Digital Age: Doug Fine at TEDxABQ – YouTube.


f.lux: software to make your life better (i.e. Your Sleep)

As most of us suffering from one or the other emotional condition – I reject the term “mental” disease – can attest to, impaired sleep is often a crucial aspect of our condition and not exactly helping things. To me, finding enough healthy sleep has become almost the number one priority right after breathing and other basic body functions… So I was immediately on high alert (ooops, lame pun, sorry… 🙂 ) when coming across an article advertising this nifty little piece of software today called f.lux, which filters most of the blue light from your computer’s screen according to daytime, thus simulating the natural lighting conditions and being less offensive to your brain’s melatonin production. Apparently, latest research yields strong evidence for impaired sleep in people using tablets, smartphones and computers screens later at night or right before falling asleep (and I take it us “bloggerites” make no exception there). More specifically: The blue light emitted from many of nowaday’s commodity devices such as smartphones, tablets, laptops is responsible for altering the body’s circadian clock, which regulates sleep and waking time patterns. Study results indicate that it is particularly the high percentage of blue light coming from those screens that has the body “think” it was looking into the sun at mid day. In using such a device in the hours before falling asleep – which is most likely true for a lot of people working from home or needing to check their inbox one last time before going to bed – we literally seem to “program” our bodies into staying alert at a time, when the body is meant to wind down and get ready for sleep. (I know, I’m guilty as charged in that regard….). F.lux – I love the clever naming, b.t.w.! – is a little piece of software – temporarily, non-destructively – manipulating the color profile of your computer screen in such a way that most of the blue light is filtered away according to daytime and geo location.

I’ve become aware of this software and the science behind it today and immediately headed over to test drive it. Even upon first use I think I can say that I find the mellow warm light when working on the computer later at night a lot less aggressive and offensive to the eyes than the computer display’s regular blend of colors (unless it’s daytime, of course). I switched off F.lux for a moment to see the difference and it’s really an almost “tangible” one. Anyway, if you’re a person aware of your health and caring about it, you might want to try this thing (free of charge, at least for now). Follow the link below to download it for your computer.

f.lux: software to make your life better.

Soundcheck – Too Much To Handle

Yesterday was too much to handle, this is, too. There is only so much input I can process at a given time. Trying to keep technology at bay while being relaxed enough to “enjoy” myself while performing – impossible. This is frustrating and I’m giving myself permission to relieve myself from that frustration from now on. I have really tried. Ain’t gonna happen. What’s more: I think, it’s always been some sort of overcompensating. Or let’s just say: It used to be a way of thinking I was “connected” with other human beings at the time. Maybe it was indeed the only place I felt connected with all the damage incurred in other areas of my personality. But that doesn’t seem to work any longer, much less so, when I’m by myself doing all of what you see and hear by myself, too. There is no point to it. And the people in that business – what would I want to be around them for? That’s not my habitat at all. Actually, nowhere is. Yuck. I’m tired.

Soundcheck – YouTube.

Major Breakthrough with Health Insurance

Today could mark an important breakthrough in getting access to suitable therapy in about six years – or rather forever. I’ve had a very productive phone conversation with a very accommodating, kind lady at my health insurance company. She suggested to switch plans to one of the new products, which are on one hand more expensive, but will include outpatient psychotherapy. I’ve had another phone conversation with one of the doctors the clinic recommended. Pending a decision to work with her and upon my asking so, she alluded to a preliminary volume of 240 sessions – that seems to be the average amount of sessions she’s had with other clients. In other words: Given my current health insurance plan, there is no “workaround” for this situation.

So I’m beyond grateful to hear that the new products, which are comparable to my old plan, will include outpatient therapy. For more reasons than one, an inpatient setting simply isn’t an option for me. If anything, the throat surgery has reconfirmed my prior own assessment that I wouldn’t be able to make it through 6, 8 or more weeks of inpatient psychotherapy – not to mention that they wouldn’t cover this length of time and that several clinics had turned me down on account of these implications. In other words: I have been hitting walls left, right and center in the past years. And I have heard from non-affected former friends that they would have killed themselves for only a fragment of what I’ve been going through. I think, I should be o.k. to reward myself with my own imaginary “perseverance award” for having survived what I’ve survived in the past six years and seeing that the condition has brought about a situation of disability and incapacity to work in a normal setting.

It’s not a done deal yet. I’m going to have to rely on my perserverance to get the switch to the new plan seen through with social welfare (because they’ll be the ones to actually pay for it, there is no other option at this point). But from all the information I have, they technically can’t turn me down – not on a long term basis, though. I hope, this will go faster and easier than previous processes with them in that they’ll spare me going through all the stages of filing for something, getting turned down, objecting, getting turned down again and then having to press charges (which is what happened with just about anything I had to lean on so far… talk about learning frustration tolerance the hard way…).

Anyway. This is good news! It’s not only a silverlining – it’s almost a solar flare! More hope, in other words. And substantiated, specific hope for healing!

B.t.w. and @Jean: The doctor lady calling back today mentioned all the things you kindly suggested I look into. So that’s another aspect of the good news. After all, it looks as if my holding on for dear life seems to pay off in some way.
Thanks for all your kind support and ideas. A sense of direction and confidence is coming back.

Electromagnetic theories of consciousness – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I’ve familiarized myself with the discussion on and criticism of the Quantum Mind wikipedia page. It seems to me that so far there is no satisfactory definition of what actually constitutes consciousness, much less a distinction between consciousness and awareness. And while pondering on both, it appears to me that current discussion on either is rather a debate on what constitutes identity and how we as human individuals each arrive at an idea of identity that serves as our reference point for everything else, i.e. the internal as well as external world. The only thing that seem obvious at this point is that so far no AI machine or device has been created that is self-aware. Which introduces another term: The Self. To me, the attempt of contemplating on consciousness seems futile so long as none of the above terms and ideas are sufficiently disambiguated from each other. Any thoughts?

Electromagnetic theories of consciousness – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Public vs. (Semi-) Private Blogging

Ok, this struck me as weird. A blog called “On the Wire” reblogged my current entry. While getting reblogged can be flattering, I myself usually make it a point to ask the blogger first, if they provide a way of getting in touch with them directly. The only time I do not ask a prior express permission is when the nature of the blog is apparently meant for the general public or a special interest group and the blogger makes their money otherwise. In other words: If a certain degree of publicity can be safely inferred from the content, I go ahead and take the liberty to reblog.
However, I would have assumed that the content provided here is relevant to only very few people. People, who can relate or have experienced things similar to those I talk about on here. “On the Wire” clearly don’t fall into that category.

Hence, I am left to assume they are a blog “aggregator”, but a rather random one, whose goal seems to be to get as many visits and clicks as possible in order to make money with ads. I tried to find a mission statement or other way to get in touch with them, but to no avail. (which – seems to confirm my assumption). So I asked them to take my posting down. While I’m aware that my posts are public, I think I counted on the limited attention they might get due to the nature of their content. But to find my latest posting rather randomly syndicated gives me a slightly queasy feeling.

I’m going to watch those guys. If this continues, I’m afraid I have to secure future posts with a password, which my subscribers then need to request from me. To make things as easy as possible, I’d initially try to get by with the same password for every new entry, so you’d have to request this only once. I’m sorry for any potential inconvenience, but I guess I never really expected for anything like this to happen. What’s your experiences, if any with random “stealing”?