Being Fat Could Make You Stupid, Study Says

A new study published in the journal Frontiers in Endocrinology is warning that people consuming an additional 650 calories per day could develop impaired brain and cognitive functions.

Australian National University professor Nicolas Cherbuin, the lead author of the study titled Sugar in mind: Untangling a sweet and sour relationship beyond type 2 diabetes, analyzed 200 international studies including another that monitored the cognitive health of more than 7,000 people. Researchers concluded that lifestyle choices could lead to deteriorating brain functions.

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…….Why is the river laughing?

Why, because the sun is tickling the river

…….Why is the river singing?

Because the skylark praised the river’s voice.

…….Why is the river cold?

It remembers being once loved by the snow.

…….How old is the river?

It’s the same age as the forever young springtime.

…….Why does the river never rest?

Well, you see it’s because the mother sea
is waiting for the river to come home.

by Shuntaro Tanikawa
The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry
Vintage Books, 1996

The personal trauma that lies behind Edvard Munch’s unnerving art

Look closer

The personal trauma that lies behind Edvard Munch’s unnerving art

He was fascinated by psychology and haunted by mental collapse

He was fascinated by psychology and haunted by mental collapse

At the start of the 20th century Sigmund Freud observed the psychological phenomenon of “repetition compulsion”, the pathological desire to repeat a pattern of behaviour over and over again. He no doubt would have diagnosed the painter Edvard Munch with such an affliction. As the British Museum’s new exhibition of his work demonstrates, Munch returned obsessively to certain visual motifs: uncanny sunsets, zombie-like faces, threateningly sexualised female bodies. 

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Quantum Computing Explained — It’s Rocket Science

A couple of years ago, I thought Quantum Mechanics was a bunch of theoretical science with no real world applications: Not anymore

In recent years, we’ve seen the emergence of Quantum Computing; spearheaded by companies such as D-Wave, Rigetti Computing, and IBM. In a nutshell (Kurzgesagt😉), Quantum Computing will revolutionize computing, allowing us to solve complex computational problems that would have been impossible on classical computers.

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Robert Sapolsky: This Is Your Brain on Nationalism

Robert Sapolsky in Foreign Affairs:

He never stood a chance. His first mistake was looking for food alone; perhaps things would have turned out differently if he’d been with someone else. The second, bigger mistake was wandering too far up the valley into a dangerous wooded area. This was where he risked running into the Others, the ones from the ridge above the valley. At first, there were two of them, and he tried to fight, but another four crept up behind him and he was surrounded. They left him there to bleed to death and later returned to mutilate his body. Eventually, nearly 20 such killings took place, until there was no one left, and the Others took over the whole valley.

The protagonists in this tale of blood and conquest, first told by the primatologist John Mitani, are not people; they are chimpanzees in a national park in Uganda. Over the course of a decade, the male chimps in one group systematically killed every neighboring male, kidnapped the surviving females, and expanded their territory. Similar attacks occur in chimp populations elsewhere; a 2014 studyfound that chimps are about 30 times as likely to kill a chimp from a neighboring group as to kill one of their own. On average, eight males gang up on the victim.

If such is the violent reality of life as an ape, is it at all surprising that humans, who share more than 98 percent of their DNA with chimps, also divide the world into “us” and “them” and go to war over these categories?

More here.

The Barbarians are Coming

War chariots thunder, horses neigh, the barbarians are coming.

What are we waiting for, young nubile women pointing at the wall,
    the barbarians are coming.

They have heard about a weakened link in the wall.
    So, the barbarians have ears among us.

So deceive yourself with illusions: you are only one woman,
holding one broken brick in the wall.

So deceive yourself with illusions: as if you matter,
that brick and that wall.

The barbarians are coming: they have red beards or beardless
with a top knot.

The barbarians are coming: they are your fathers, brothers,
teachers, lovers; and they are clearly an other.

The barbarians are coming:
If you call me a horse, I must be a horse.
If you call me a bison, I am equally as guilty.

When a thing is true and is correctly described, one doubles
the blame by not admitting it: so, Chuangtzu, himself,
was a barbarian king!

Horse, horse, bison, bison, the barbarians are coming

and how they love to come.
The smells of the great frontier exalt in them!

by Marilyn Chin
from Modern American Poetry

Is the saying: “外儒内法 / Outside Confucian, Inside Legalist” applicable to modern China?

外儒内法 is a simplified term.

Prior to the Emperor Hanwu (the one who adopted Confucianism as the official ideology and promoted 外儒内法), his father and grandfather all used 黄老之道 (the yellow elder’s way) to govern the Empire.

(This painting is trying to show how “relaxed” the society should be and how government should let go of everything like this 黄老/ old man on the left).

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