Friday, August 26, 2016

ESO Discovers Earth-Size Planet in Habitable Zone of Nearest Star

ESO Discovers Earth-Size Planet in Habitable Zone of Nearest Star

A newly discovered, roughly Earth-sized planet orbiting our nearest neighboring star might be habitable, according to a team of astronomers using the European Southern Observatory's 3.6-meter telescope at La Silla, Chile, along with other telescopes around the world.

Facts from the article 
  • The exoplanet is at a distance from its star that allows temperatures mild enough for liquid water to pool on its surface.
  • The new planet circles Proxima Centauri, the smallest member of a triple star system known to science fiction fans everywhere as Alpha Centauri. Just over 4 light-years away, Proxima is the closest star to Earth, besides our own sun. 
  • "The closest star to us has a possible rocky planet in the habitable zone.
  • The science team that made the discovery, led by Guillem Anglada-Escudé of Queen Mary University of London, will publish its findings Aug. 25 in the journal Nature
  • The team traced subtle wobbles in the star revealing, the presence of a star-tugging planet.
They determined that
  • the new planet is dubbed Proxima b.  
  • It is at least 1.3 times the mass of Earth. 
  • It orbits its star far more closely than Mercury orbits our sun.
  •  Proxima b takes 11 days to complete a single orbit. [a "year" on Proxima b.]
Long list of unknowns
  • the new planet lies within its star's "habitable zone" -- a distance at which temperatures are right for liquid water -- scientists do not yet know if the planet has an atmosphere.
  • It also orbits a red-dwarf star, far smaller and cooler than our sun. 
  • The planet likely presents only one face to its star, as the moon does to Earth, instead of rotating through our familiar days and nights. 
  •  Proxima b could be subject to potentially life-extinguishing stellar flares.

To read the ESO press release, visit:
To learn more about NASA's Exoplanet Program, visit:
Elizabeth Landau
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
818-354-6425
elizabeth.landau@jpl.nasa.gov
Written by Pat Brennan
NASA Exoplanet Program
2016-218

Proxima is the closest star to Earth, besides our own sun. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Muslims vs Vikings

muslims v vikings

Muslims vs Vikings

“And were it not for Allāh’s repelling some men with others, the earth would certainly be in a state of disorder; but Allāh is Gracious to the creatures”[1]

The Ummah of the best of the Messengers, the imam of the messengers, most beloved of the Messengers, Muhammad (sallAllāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) is one which is raised in distinction by Allāh as the greatest Ummah. Such an honour is granted upon this Ummah for many reasons but one is certainly the honour, courage and valour shown by its adherents. Arguably, there is not a group of any significance whom you can think of from history but that you will find that the Muslims had challenged them or had been challenged by them and that the Muslims were victorious. More than a millennium ago fleets of Viking raiders were striking fear into the hearts of coast and river-dwellers throughout Europe. Many such foes have come and gone be it the Romans, the Persians, the Crusaders, the Mongols and so on. So too you will find that the Muslims also encountered the much feared Vikings.

These two worlds were of course very different. One was a red-headed pagan tribe that wore horned helmets and pillaged for a living; the other a cosmopolitan, sophisticated civilisation that spanned continents and, at whose table, the rest of Europe picked up the crumbs. The Vikings were at the height of their power and influence between the late 8th and early 11th centuries known as the ‘Viking Age’. During this period, Islām was entering its golden age, with a renaissance of unprecedented intellectual and economic heights that would eventually reach from China to what is now modern-day Spain.

Who were the Vikings?

The Vikings’ homeland was Scandinavia: modern-day Norway, Sweden and Denmark. From here they travelled great distances, mainly by sea and river – as far as North America to the west, Russia to the east, Lapland to the north and North Africa and Iraq to the south. They were skilled craftsmen and boat-builders, adventurous explorers and wide-ranging traders.

The Clash

When most people think of the history of Spain, rarely are discussions of the Vikings evoked. Yet when the two cultures first met, it was in battle in Al-Andalus, modern-day Spain.
What is interesting is that whilst the Muslims in the Middle East referred to the Vikings as ‘Rüs’, which was the term they were also know by to the Byzantine Romans, the Muslims in Europe in al-Andalus referred to them as ‘Mâjus’, ‘Fire Worshippers’ – a pejorative reference to their paganism and a label which Muslims also used for the fire worshipping Persians.

Fresh from their conquests round that basin of the Mediterranean, the Vikings sought to measure their strength against the military might of the Muslims. In 844 (230AH), a letter arrived in the capital, Qurtuba (Cordoba) from the governor of Lisbon, Burtùqaāl (Portugal, which finds its root in the Arabic word for orange), Wahballah ibn Hazm to the emir of the Umayyad Emirate of al-Andalus, ‘Abd ar-Rahman ibn al-Hakam II, warning him that approximately 70-100 Viking ships had been sighted around the coast of his province. In other accounts, the ships were seen as so numerous that they were described as filling the sea with dark red birds, whilst filling the hearts of men with fear and trembling. After landing in Lisbon with their iron horned helmets, chain mail, wooden shields, spears, bows, axes and swords, they caused havoc terrorising the inhabitants. They then did the same in Cadiz and Sidona, before striking the large city of Ishbiliyya (Seville) which they besieged and took by storm and laid fire to the largest Mosque there. They remained there for 7 days and, in other accounts, for 14 days.

It is said that the Vikings were uncommonly brave and therefore ‘Abd ar-Rahman wanted to ensure all the reinforcements had arrived before mounting a challenge. When all the soldiers from the borders had arrived and gathered under one banner, the Muslims hastened and took their position under the cover of night at a high point on the south east of Seville at a place called Moron to lie in wait for the enemy. They used a large tower of a Church in the town as a watch tower to observe the movement of the Vikings. Just after the time of Fajr (the prayer at dawn) had passed, the guard on the watch tower sent a signal that the Mâjus Vikings were on the move numbering around 16,000. The Muslims let them pass and then set upon them in ambush cutting them off from the city of Seville where they were encamped and set about cutting them down. This attack was carried out with great success.

Having decimated the Vikings in this attack, the Muslims advanced on to Seville – when the Mâjus army there saw the advancement of the Muslims and heard about the disaster that had befallen their detachment army in Moron at the hands of the Muslims, they began to retreat back to their ships and started sailing away. The Muslims pursued them and captured and burned four of their ships having already unloaded them of all their cargo.[2]
The Muslim historian, Ibn Adhari narrates the event of the victory as follows:
“God gave them to our swords and destroyed them, numerous as they were. Their general was killed. When they had been annihilated, the Government made this event known throughout the provinces to celebrate this event”.[3]
Terms following the battle and the intrigue of al-Gazzál

It was characteristic of the Vikings that trading often followed the raiding and the sword. After the battle, the envoys of the king of the Vikings came to ‘Abd ar-Rahman to ask for peace. ‘Abd ar-Rahman decided to reply accepting this request and an exchange of envoys took place. The man who was commissioned with this task from the Muslims was Yahya ibn-Hakam, better known as al-Ghazál (not to be mistaken for the Muslim sage, al-Ghazzali) who was the leading diplomat in al-Andalus and who possessed keenness of mind, quickness of wit, skill in repartee, courage and perseverance, and knew his way in and out of every door. He, together with a companion of his made the perilous voyage to the kingdom of the Vikings in the Atlantic North.[4]

Two days after arriving to a great island in the ocean, the king of the Vikings summoned al-Ghazál to his presence. Al-Ghazál stipulated that he would not be made to kneel to him and that he and his companions would not be required to do anything contrary to their faith. The King agreed to this, however, when they went to him, he sat before them in magnificent guise, and ordered an entrance, through which he must be approached, to be made so low that one could only enter kneeling. Al-Ghazál being the wise man that he was, sat on the ground, stretched forth his two legs, and dragged himself through on his rear. And when he had passed through the doorway, he stood erect. 

The king had prepared himself for him, with many arms and great pomp. But al-Ghazál was not overawed by this, nor did it frighten him. He stood erect before him, and said: Assalam Alaikum, Peace be with you, O king, and with those whom your assembly hall contains, and respectful greetings to you!. Al-Ghazál sensed that the King wished for him to be impressed by the splendour of his palace and power which he perceived he held and as such, al- Ghazál took this opportunity in also reminding the King what his true reality by reciting a verse from the Glorious Qur’an carefully, selected from Surah al-Qasas, the chapter which recounts the story of Musa (ʿalayhi al-Salām) and Pharoah:
“And call not with Allāh any other god; there is no god but He, everything is perishable but He; His is the judgment, and to Him you shall be brought back. [5]
The King then said: “this is one of the wise men of his nation, we wished to humiliate him but he outwitted me by showing me the soles of his feet first sitting on the ground as he entered (rather than bowing to me)”. Al- Ghazál read out ‘Abd ar-Rahman’s letter to the King and presented the gifts which he had given him which pleased him much. From the various chronicles where this story is found, it states that the Queen took a real interest in Al- Ghazál and that he spent some time with her speaking to her about Islām and the Muslim world. Pausing here for a moment, it should be noted that earlier this year in March 2015, a ring adorned with a violet-coloured piece of glass was found at an excavation site at a Viking trading centre in Sweden. An inscription on the glass has been found to read either “for Allāh” or “to Allāh” in an ancient Arabic Kufic script. The ring was found in a grave north of Borg on the Björkö Island. Clothes and jewellery around the decomposed skeleton showed it to be a female burial dating back to 850 AD, which interestingly places it in the same period as al- Ghazál and the Viking queen.[6] Either way, the ring constitutes evidence for direct interactions between the Vikings and the Islamic world.

Al- Ghazál returned to al-Andalus more than 20 months after his departure. Although the Vikings would return once again to al-Andalus in or around 859-860 during the reign of Emir Muhammad, this time they were dealt with far more swiftly and set to flight immediately as the previous attack some 29 years earlier had caused ‘Abd ar-Rahman to militarise more aggressively which included him building an arsenal in Seville, ordering many ships to be built and developing the navy who guarded the frontiers of the country and thus, fulfilling the task which the Messenger of Allāh (sallAllāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) described as follows:
“Guarding the frontier for a day in the path of Allāh is better than fasting and prayer of a month.” [7]
Further Encounter

The most important eye witness account of the Vikings that the world has to learn from today is from the works of a Muslim faqih, an expert in Islamic jurisprudence and faith, in the court of the Abbasid Caliph, Al-Muqtadir, Ahmad ibn Fadlanas – it was his account that inspired author Michael Crichton’s 1976 novel ‘Eaters’ and the film called the ‘13th Warrior’ starring Antonio Banderas.

Ibn Fadlan was sent from Baghdad in 921 to serve as the secretary to an ambassador from the Abbasid Caliph al-Muqtadir to the iltäbär (vassal-king under the Khazars) of the Volga Bulgaria, Almış. Primarily, the purpose of their mission was to explain Islamic law to the recently converted Bulgar peoples living on the eastern bank of the Volga River in what is now Russia
Whilst on his mission, he came across and encountered the Vikings whom he also spent some time with and whom he described as follows:
“I have seen the Rus as they came on their merchant journeys and encamped by the Vulgar River. I have never seen more perfect physical specimens, tall as date palms, blond and ruddy…Each man has an axe, a sword, and a knife, and keeps each by him at all times”.
He further commented on their hygiene customs when he recounted that: “They are the filthiest of God’s creatures,” and although he acknowledged that they washed their hands, faces and heads every day, he was appalled that they did so “in the dirtiest and filthiest fashion possible” in a communal basin of water, an ancient Germanic custom that caused understandable revulsion in a Muslim who typically performed ablutions only in poured or running water.[8]

This was a period which saw the Vikings making regular journeys all the way to Baghdad for trading. Hundreds of Viking Age graves and buried hoards, it turns out, contain caches of still-gleaming Arab dirhams, “the coin that helped fuel the Viking Age,” according to Thomas S. Noonan of the University of Minnesota. Noonan is one of the world’s leading experts on medieval Scandinavian ties with the Muslim world, and a specialist in Viking numismatic history.

Points to note:

When researchers consider the history of the Vikings today, they are heavily reliant on Muslim chroniclers because, unlike Europeans, the Arab Muslims reports are considered to be far more objective and, in the eyes of many scholars today, more credible. Most experts acknowledge that the Vikings were, in general, victims of a medieval “bad press” by many European nations because of the defeats the Vikings exacted on them.

It is also easy to forget in today’s times when Muslims have become comparatively weak, that it was not always like this. It shows us that there was once a time when there was a flourishing field of Islamic geography, a response to the thirst for knowledge about the vast Islamic world and the regions beyond it. We also learn how Muslims conducted themselves, being proud of their faith and not being overawed by a dominant surrounding as we saw with the example of Al-Ghazál.

It is important for us to reconnect with our history and heritage to learn about our rich tradition of innovation, culture, honour and courage, planning and foresight and read about when the Ummah was great so that the Ummah may become great once more inshaAllāh.

Source: www.islam21c.com

Notes:

For references on the battle, please see: Al-Kutia, translated by David James, “Early Islamic Spain”; And,
Ibn-Adhari, translated in Stefansson, Jon, “The Vikings in Spain. From Arabic (Moorish) and Spanish Sources”. In Saga-Book of the Viking Club: Vol. VI Proceedings. University of London King’s College, 1909, pp. 35-36.

For references on al-Ghazál, please see: “The Poet and the Spae-Wife, An Attempt to Reconstruct Al-Ghazal’s Embassy to the Vikings”, By W.E.D Allen.
[1] Al-Qur’ān 2:254
[2] Al-Kutia, translated by David James, “Early Islamic Spain”.
[3] Ibn-Adhari, translated in Stefansson, Jon, “The Vikings in Spain. From Arabic (Moorish) and Spanish Sources”. In Saga-Book of the Viking Club: Vol. VI Proceedings. University of London King’s College, 1909, pp. 35-36.
[4] “The Poet and the Spae-Wife, An Attempt to Reconstruct Al-Ghazal’s Embassy to the Vikings”, By W.E.D Allen.
[5] Al-Qur’ān, 28:88 
[6] http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/archaeology/engraved-ring-found-in-sweden-suggests-contact-between-viking-age-scandinavians-and-islamic-civilisation-10118283.html
[7] Muslim
[8] “Among the Norse Tribes, The Remarkable Account of Ibn Fadlan”, By Judith Gabriel

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Friday, August 19, 2016

Alpaca Overview: Felting Alpaca

 Yesterday I went to a felting workshop ... I made an awesome piece and felted a chiffon scarf. 

My felted scarf
Today after reading this article below I attempted to felt raw Alpaca wool.  It worked a treat.   I am going to do several unique pieces and join those tastefully as a band on a long warm skirt for winter.  I intend to make a work of art to wear.  Something resembling that of a Nordic style, to which from one corner of the world I inherit my strong blonde hair. 

Felting is such a joy!

palette of alpaca
Image Source - Flickr
Alpaca Overview: Felting Alpaca: Felting with Alpaca Felting is one of the many way ways to utilize alpaca fiber.   Felting alpaca can create a dense, fabric like materi...

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Scientists Discover That Bacteria Have a Collective Memory

Scientists Discover That Bacteria Have a Collective Memory



 Collective motion can be observed in biological systems over a wide
range of length scales, from large animals to bacteria because
collective systems always work better for adaptation than those which
are singular. Individual bacterial cells have short memories. But groups
of bacteria can develop a collective memory that can increase their
tolerance to stress. This has been demonstrated experimentally for the
first time in a study by Eawag and ETH Zurich scientists published in PNAS.




A central question in the study of biological
collective motion is how the traits of individuals give rise to the
emergent behavior at population level. This question is relevant to
the dynamics of general self-propelled particle systems, biological
self-organization, and active fluids. Bacteria provide a tractable
system to address this question, because bacteria are simple and their
behavior is relatively easy to control.



Bacteria
exposed to a moderate concentration of salt survive subsequent
exposure to a higher concentration better than if there is no warning
event. But in individual cells this effect is short-lived: after just 30
minutes, the survival rate no longer depends on the exposure history.
Now two Eawag/ETH Zurich microbiologists, Roland Mathis and Martin
Ackermann, have reported a new discovery made under the microscope with
Caulobacter crescentus, a bacterium ubiquitous in freshwater and
seawater.



When an entire population is observed,
rather than individual cells, the bacteria appear to develop a kind of
collective memory. In populations exposed to a warning event,
survival rates upon a second exposure two hours after the warning are
higher than in populations not previously exposed. Using computational
modelling, the scientists explained this phenomenon in terms of a
combination of two factors. Firstly, salt stress causes a delay in
cell division, leading to synchronization of cell cycles; secondly,
survival probability depends on the individual bacterial cell's
position in the cell cycle at the time of the second exposure. As a
result of the cell cycle synchronization, the sensitivity of the
population changes over time. Previously exposed populations may be
more tolerant to future stress events, but they may sometimes even be
more sensitive than populations with no previous exposure.


Martin Ackermann comments: "If we understand
this collective effect, it may improve our ability to control
bacterial populations." The findings are relevant, for example, to our
understanding of how pathogens can resist antibiotics, or how the
performance of bacterial cultures in industrial processes or
wastewater treatment plants can be maintained under dynamic
conditions. After all, bacteria play a crucial role in almost all bio-
and geochemical processes. From a human perspective, depending on the
particular process, they are either beneficial -- e.g. if they break
down pollutants or convert nutrients into energy -- or harmful,
especially if they cause diseases. For the researchers, says Mathis,
another important conclusion can be drawn: "If you want to understand
the behaviour and fate of microbial populations, it's sometimes
necessary to analyse every single cell."


Bacteria also have the collective capacity to
generate many neurotransmitters and neuromodulators. For example,
certain Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species produce gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA); Escherichia, Bacillus and Saccharomyces produce norepinephrine (NE).



Future studies of how microbes contribute to the function of their
host on all levels will play an important role in advancing
understanding of health disorders as well as disorders of social
interaction.



Sources:


eawag.ch

sciencedirect.com

springer.com



L-Glutamine Changes Gut Bacteria Leading To Weight Loss

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

#CensusFail 2016 Census

Disco potato with IBM spud open boot firmware 

The 9th August was set down to be Australia's 2016 Census Night.  The Turnbull government have turned this into a circus.

The extraordinary fiasco of doing this online has been the brunt of endless jokes today as the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) appealed to the public that the website had been attacked by hackers and later on they reported a DDoS attack (Denial of Service).  It was made clear by IT experts that Australia was not attacked by either of these at all yesterday.

All of a sudden the lies of the government have been exposed for what they are, a massive power grab against the Australian People's privacy.  I and many others feel they failed.  People are laughing everywhere at the farcical mess up of a great institution that has been delivering good statistics for many years with out any fuss. 

Many Australian Senators are boycotting putting their names on the papers and some are boycotting it in total because it has been made into a farcical nightmare.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Homeschool to avoid Brainwashing.

Lower left door
Image Source - Flickr
Today its clearer than ever before that for a majority of children in our society the activity of being separated from parents for a number of hours each day is a traumatic experience.  It could be seen as a grand waste of a lot of valuable time to.  That is if you look at the length of time it takes to complete a days lessons at home in comparison the number of hours at a school.  This figure is dramatically reduced in a one on one situation.

"Forced association is not socialization"  Adele Carrol-Brown

Read the following interesting article regarding the unschooling of a school (brainwashed) child.  It is a process and its worth while.

Why Every Parent Should Consider Unschooling

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Barnaby Joyce ... Big sigh!

 On 11 February 2016, Joyce was elected unopposed as Leader of the National Party, with Fiona Nash as his deputy, and was sworn in as Deputy Prime Minister of Australia on February 18, 2016.

He won his seat in the New England over the independent Tony Windsor and since then has made gaff after gaff and had to recover himself time and time again.

Jesuit trained no doubts as he has a strange way of looking at the world.  It is clearly an antiquated Roman Catholic view.   After all he thinks Gay marriage will impede his daughters having a normal marriage.  Some how I just don't get his logic here.  Perhaps he fears there are more gay men than he previous expected and worries there wont be enough straight men for his straight daughters.

Ex Prime Minister Kevin Rudd didn't get his position with the United Nations because Barnaby hadn't buried a previous hatchet adequately.  Presently, questions are being asked did Barnaby lie to the Australian people about this.
Read Here...


SARRAH delegation_070813  


"Ministerial Swearing-in Ceremony". Events. Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. 18 February 2016. Retrieved 19 February 2016. "Tony Abbott's cabinet and outer ministry". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. AAP. 16 September 2013. Retrieved 16 September 2013.
"Nationals won't toe Libs' line: Joyce". The Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 18 September 2008. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Debelle, Penelope (31 May 2008). "Independently inclined". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Clifford, Catherine (8 August 2013). "8 years in Senate over as Barnaby bows out". ABC News. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
About Barnaby: barnabyjoyce.com.au
Public Speeches: barnabyjoyce.com.au - via archive.org; retrieved 17 April 2010
Koutsoukis, Jason (16 April 2005). "The power of one in the bush". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Todd, Mark; Seccombe, Mike (1 August 2005). "Joyce digs in for keeps to set up Telstra fund". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
O'Brien, Kerry (14 September 2005). "Joyce stands by Telstra vote" (transcript). 7.30 Report. Australia: ABC TV. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
Bell, Lynn (12 October 2006). "Media laws pass the Senate". PM. Australia: ABC Radio. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
"Mine Antarctica, says Barnaby Joyce". The Age. Melbourne. AAP. 1 May 2006. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
David Feeney, Chilling Prospect of Funding Failure in Antarctica, The Australian, 4 January 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2016
Joyce, Barnaby (11 May 2009). Address to the National Press Club (Speech). Canberra: Barnaby Joyce. Archived from the original on 30 July 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Catherine McGrath; Mark Colvin (12 October 2005). "Maverick Barnaby Joyce criticised by Nationals leader for crossing the floor". ABC PM Radio. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 1 February 2015.
"You can depend on the Nationals". ElectionLeftlets.org.au. Open Australia Foundation. Retrieved 1 February 2015.
"Nationals senators cross the floor out of frustration with Coalition counterparts - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. 2015-03-20. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
"The World Today - Joyce attacked for crossing the floor". Abc.net.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
"Barnaby Joyce". They Vote For You. Open Australia Foundation. Retrieved 1 February 2015.
Berkovic, Nicola (18 September 2008). "Leader Barnaby Joyce still a maverick". The Australian. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
"Barnaby elected Nationals Senate leader". AM. Australia: ABC Radio. 18 September 2008. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Grattan, Michelle (18 September 2008). "A quiet coup makes Joyce Senate leader of Nationals". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
Martin, Peter (20 February 2010). "Reserve at odds with Joyce view". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
"Senator Barnaby Joyce". Senators and Members. Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
"Barnaby Joyce wins preselection for lower house seat of New England". News.com.au. AAP. 14 April 2013. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
"Northern Tablelands voters look set to elect local mayor as next state MP". Independent Media Centre Australia. 19 May 2013. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
Remeikis, Amy: LNP's Barry O'Sullivan headed for Senate, The Sydney Morning Herald, 12 September 2013.
"Ministers". About us. Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, Australian Government. 30 September 2015. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
"Depp makes fun of Joyce with joke about killing dogs". Nine News. 5 September 2015.
"As it happened: Barnaby Joyce elected unopposed to Nationals leadership, Fiona Nash deputy - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. 2016-02-11. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
Roberts, Greg (8 October 2004). "Nationals split over Family First deal – Election 2004". The Australian. p. 9. Retrieved 16 August 2010.
"Anger over rally to ridicule gay marriage". The Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 16 August 2011.
Judith Ireland & Richard Willingham (14 August 2012). "If rights are what you want, don't get married: Joyce". The Sydney Morning Herald.
Joyce joins calls for medicinal cannabis: 1 June 2014 Daily Telegraph
"Bring in more Syrian refugees: Barnaby Joyce". The West Australian. 2015-09-04. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
Kidman, Alex (2015-09-07). "Syrian refugee crisis: This is about humanity, not religion - The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
Joyce, Barnaby (11 September 2005). Barnaby Joyce: A Most Interesting Senator (transcript). Interview with Antony Funnell. Background Briefing. Radio National. Australia. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
Joyce, Barnaby (17 March 2009). Barnaby Joyce launches campaign to keep Rio Tinto local (transcript). Interview with Kerry O'Brien. 7.30 Report. ABCTV. Australia. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
Barnaby Joyce. "We have concerns over sale of Cubbie Station: Barnaby Joyce". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
"Government rejection of GrainCorp takeover by US company Archer Daniels Midland 'weak', Opposition says - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. 2013-11-29. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
Tim Elliott. "Kidman sale halt a chance 'to reassess'". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
"Opposition agriculture spokesman Joel Fitzgibbon slams 'political' decision to block Kidman & Co sale - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. 2015-11-21. Retrieved 2016-04-17.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Yggdrasil Tree that holds up the Sky.


Yggdrasil-and all its creatures
I love the story  of  Mimirs Well.  It reminds me of Mary's Waterhole / Miimiga Gaungan,  north of Coffs Harbour.  Sacred birthing place of the original people of this land known now as Australia.


IMG_3049

Miimiga Gaungan, located within Sherwood Nature Reserve, is a sacred, spiritually and culturally significant site for Gumbaynggir women. The waterhole is considered to have special healing attributes; preventing miscarriages and ensuring women carried children to their full term safely:  
Sometimes four or more women would perform the ritual in the water and washing themselves as high as the breasts, while asking to Wooroomparahal (God) in the sky to help carry the babies till birth. After white people came to the district, many young Gumbainggeri women began to have miscarriages. They believed that unless they performed this ceremony, they would lose their baby. When they had completed the ceremony, the women were confident their pregnancies would go full term (WetRocks n.d.:1). 

Knowledge of the spiritual healing qualities of Miimiga Gaungan continues to be passed on to Gumbayngirr women needing spiritual and physical healing. Aboriginal women from the local community look after the site and visit periodically to clear leaves and sediment out of the waterhole. Men are forbidden from entering the site (OEH 2013). 4
Clarence Valley Aboriginal Heritage Study.

Mímisbrunnr "Mimir's well" - The second root

This well is known for being the root of all wisdom and knowledge, and its protector is the all knowing Mimir. Mímir, (“The Rememberer”) is an exceptionally wise being and a counselor of the gods. A shadowy being who lived next to the second root at Mimir`s well, and whose knowledge of all things was practically unparalleled among the inhabitants of the cosmos.

Odin achieved this status largely by taking his water from the well, whose waters impart this cosmic knowledge. When Odin arrived, he asked Mimir for a drink from the water. The well’s guardian, knowing the value of such a draught, refused unless the seeker offered an eye in return. Odin gouged out one of his eyes and dropped it into the well.

Having made the necessary sacrifice, Mimir dipped his horn into the well and offered the now-one-eyed god a drink Later Mimir was killed and beheaded by the Vanir during the Aesir-Vanir War. Upon seeing the severed head, Odin embalmed it with special herbs and chanted magical songs over it to preserve it. He consults the head in times of need, and it continues to dispense incomparable advice.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

THEORIES OF NATURE

Recently I wrote down a transcript of what I gleaned from listening to Alan Watts explain the different theories of nature that are simultaneously occurring in our world.

Hello Fall
Image Souce - Flickr

Nature as a machine :The western idea.  Inherited from the Hebrews, like a potter makes a pot out of clay or a carpenter makes something from wood.  A construct and someone knows and understands how this was put together and this is the architect which is the Lord God.  By the time of Newton, people were explaining the world as a mechanism.  

Human Being as a factory,  processed by organs like cow in one end and canned corn beef the other end.  Hospital - treated as a machine. Processed and put in a chair and you are divided up in sections.

Indian Theory (east) Nature as Drama.  Hindu thought that the world is Maya.   Magic illusion art play, all the worlds a stage.  Hindu idea is the Brahman or Atman is the self - universal eternal boundless and indescribable.  It's all on me.  What you hear on radio you hear on the speaker and this is like us  ... we are the speaker.  Hindus measure time in Kalpa's.  The self (Brahman) is lost and all our agonies and adventures get mixed up in it.  Catastrophic fire and awake again and the Brahman rests awhile and so the divine self rests for another 4,326,000,000 years.

Chinese  Organic theory Idea. " Spontaneity and automatic and self moving.  SIDRAN.   What is so of itself. biology. your hair grows, your heart beats all by itself and that is nature.  Spring comes and grass grows of itself. The principal of nature is called the Tao.   Means the course of nature.  Lao Tzu said the TAO that can be spoken is not the eternal Tao because it flows everywhere it loves and nourishes but lays no claim to this.  Tao is the informing principal of nature.  The Tao is not acting as a boss ... the Chinese philosophy of nature is that nature has no boss and is completely democratic.  Westerners don't trust nature.

Confucian philosophy ... JEN  its character that Confucius placed as the highest of all virtues.  It means human heartedness.  Confucius said good goodies are the thieves of virtue.  Not in the sense of moral propriety but of magic.  A man of true virtue is a human heart ed man.  See human nature for its full self of both good and bad.    The worst wars are fought over moral principals. Wars where woman are stolen and goods stolen are easy wars.  But the first is much worse and that is why the goodies are the thieves of virtue, if you are going to do evil do it for a plain selfish motive don't do it in the name of God

Don't do evil in the name of god because if you do it turns you into a destroyer.. so a ineffectively righteous person is not human.

Chinese ideas of Justice is not served this way.  They are into compromise.  Rascals make a mutual arrangement.  This is the Chinese way, it is not the western way.  

There are two forms of LEE

First Lee

LEE  ...is Justice but you cant write it down. 

Another word for Justice in a Chinese character form - A cauldron for cooking sacrifices and a knife.  Long ago Emperor scratched with a knife on the cauldron the laws of the state so people could read these..  The emperors wise sages said this was bad.  When its written down people develop a litigious spirit and people think out ways to wrangle around it. 
This sense of justice is not something that can be put in words.  Equity is the innate sense of fair play.  A good Judge is one that has a sense of LEE ..This is a judge who has a sense of  Equity.  Seeing each case as individual. Trusting the good and bad of human nature. 

Humans are complex, we don't know ourselves well at all really (systemically).  Our conscious decisions are based with this thing we know nothing about NERVOUS SYSTEM.. lol  We are wiser in our nature than we are in our conscious thoughts.

Western mechanical theory
Hindu Dramatic theory
Chinese Organic theory

Organism is a system of orderly anarchy. There is no boss but it gets along by being left to its own devices.  WU WAY.. not interfering or acting against the Grain.

Second LEE

LEE ... Markings in Jade the grain in wood.. the fiber in muscle.  REASON or the principal of things. Organic patterns  Clouds are not a mess foam is not a mess .. it is never an artistic mistake.  They are wiggly but orderly and its difficult to describe this type of order.   We are wiggly like clouds rocks stars as they are arranged.  Nature never makes a mistake in its arrangement because it is great the way it is.  Artist tribute to it by painting landscapes etc. 
Give people a shock .. get them to see things in a new way.    LEE is natural order  shapes are orderly but we cant put our finger on the order but we don't know why and its completely different to a mess. 

St Augustine said I know what is time but if you ask me I don't etc etc.

Nature as a self ordering principal... if you want to know where the flowers come from even the God of spring does not know.
Translate this in politics and its high philosophical anarchy.. government is always mess because the state apposes itself to the people.  Governed by ourselves.  It creates itself as a business along with all the other businesses.  It really should be anonymous and unobtrusive as possible. Not flag waving etc and act ordinary not acting like you are higher.  DO YOUR JOB INSTEAD instead of DOING YOURSELF.  Help the people and not claim merit.  Just to help things along.  Govern a great state as you would cook a small fish.  it will fall apart if you don't do it gently.

Nature is a concept and it is something you should trust.  Inside nature is human nature. It will sometimes let you down with a wallop and this is the risk of life.  The alternative is to not trusted at all and it leads to totalitarianism where every one is the police and reporting everyone and one cannot be trusted about you motivations etc.  Reporting everything to everyone.  everyone is busy keeping records of everything.  Books right etc...   SCHOLAR originally meant LEISURE  ... classics poetry etc. (gentleman and a scholar)  Not necessary for survival (all the charming elegance).

Do things for the sheer pleasure of itself .. take a pebble.  Know it is lovely and just love it (purposely) instead of intellectualizing it.  Just love it for what it is not for what you can get from it.

Friday, July 15, 2016

A low vibrating entity is such because it is motivated only by material wealth.

save energy©
Image source - Flickr

A few years back I took the decision to be happy in myself  although being very poor in monetary terms. 

I could no longer compete on the level others were.   It was destroying my well-being as I kept trying to do this.

So, I made a decision to be the happiest I can possibly be on the least there possibly is.  I succeeded at doing this.  Survival is basic and increasingly people are misguided about this because of media and the general idea that is in our society.   Its all about being really mindful of how you can make a difference.

There are so many things we can do.  It does take effort and commitment.  Water costs real money, and if you don't have much then this is a drain that can be aided by conserving and saving water for the garden to avoid paying for this.  Use containers if there is no tank.  Gardens get thirsty.

Food is expensive, one can garden to off set costs.  This is aided by collecting free manure as fertilizer instead of using a bought chemical version.  Collecting your own seeds for next years crops is also money saving over a time. 

When you have a glut of particular fruits and vegetables, swapping, freezing, drying or bottling are ways to retain the preciousness longer for your family until next season.

Electricity is expensive and being smart can save you money.  Money that could be spent on things that can't be sought from an inexpensive source. 

Use cheap outdoor solar lights inside to light up dark places during the night. There is no need for turning on and off of lights for a short time using this solar method.  Boil water in the microwave if you have one (they are not much for cooking) as this is much cheaper than boiling a bench kettle.

My children think I am misguided for taking on this and abolishing my anxiety around not having enough by creating ways to make life pleasant and satisfying.

I have heard my grown up children refer to me as being in a  mentally ill state due to what they see as useless obsessions.  Its a sad thing they think about money in such a fashion as they do and don't see that you can't actually eat it.   Its not mental to save water - we all could be doing this because we live in such a dry continent.


Disappointingly, I have had to come to the realization that it is my kids who are seriously misguided and not myself.  Their ideas are redundant from my huge worldly perspective.  The dead ideas of owning stuff being the watermark of success is seriously floored.  Its an ideology fostered to make all the workers good slaves.  Pressure was always applied to my kids via equally misguided friends  (children of blind slaves) with regards  to this very subject of recycling, re-using, budgeting, gardening because for my kids I am an embarrassment.. Well go figure hey ??

Their meta-physic needs kicking to the curb before it effects their health.  All of society could do well to do a similar overhaul.

A low vibrating entity is such because it is motivated only by material wealth.
 

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/aug/05/neoliberalism-mental-health-rich-poverty-economy?CMP=share_btn_fb

Monday, July 11, 2016

Can a double positive form a negative?

Lecture Hall 

A linguistics professor says during a lecture that, “In English, a double negative forms a positive. But in some languages, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative. However, in no language in the world can a double positive form a negative.”

But just then a voice from the back of the room piped up, “Yeah, right.”

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Hon Barnaby Joyce MP – Parliament of Australia

Hon Barnaby Joyce MP – Parliament of Australia

IMG 2087
Deepwater

Parliamentary service

  • Elected to the Senate for Queensland 2004 (term began 1.7.2005) and 2010. Resigned 8.8.2013.
  • Elected to the House of Representatives for New England, New South Wales, 2013.

Parliamentary positions

  • Temporary Chair of Committees from 26.6.08 to 18.9.08.

Ministerial appointments

  • Minister for Agriculture from 18.9.13 to 21.9.15.
  • Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources from 21.9.15.

Committee service

  • Senate Standing: Library from 16.8.05 to 7.12.05.
  • Senate Legislative and General Purpose Standing: Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: Legislation Committee from 16.8.05 to 13.9.05 and References Committee from 6.9.05 to 11.9.06; Legal and Constitutional: References Committee from 16.8.05 to 11.9.06; Economics from 11.9.06 to 14.5.09; Economics: Legislation and References Committees from 14.5.09 to 2.2.10.
  • Senate Select: Fuel and Energy from 26.6.08 to 18.3.10.
  • Joint Standing: National Capital and External Territories from 16.8.05 to 11.3.10.
  • Joint Select: Parliamentary Budget Office from 23.11.10 to 23.3.11; Broadcasting Legislation from 14.3.13 to 24.6.13.

Parliamentary party positions

  • Member, Opposition Shadow Ministry from 8.12.09 to 18.9.13. Shadow Minister for Finance and Debt Reduction from 8.12.09 to 25.3.10; Shadow Minister for Regional Development, Infrastructure and Water from 25.3.10 to 14.9.10; Shadow Minister for Regional Development, Local Government and Water from 14.9.10 to 18.9.13.
  • Leader of The Nationals in the Senate from 17.9.08 to 8.8.13.
  • Federal Parliamentary Deputy Leader, The Nationals from 13.9.13 to 12.2.16.
  • Federal Parliamentary Leader, The Nationals from 12.2.16.

Party positions

  • Chair, National Party Charleville Branch 1995.
  • Vice-Chair, National Party Warrego Electorate Council 1995.
  • Delegate, The Nationals' State Conference (Qld) from 1995.
  • Delegate, The Nationals' Central Council from 2000.
  • Member, The Nationals' State Management Committee 2002-05.
  • Assistant Treasurer, The Nationals (Qld) 2002-05; Acting Treasurer 2004.
  • Member, National Party Federal Council 2002.
  • Chair, The Nationals' St George Branch 2003-05.

Personal

  • Born 17.4.1967, Tamworth, NSW.
  • Married.

Qualifications and occupation before entering Federal Parliament

  • BFA (UNE), CPA, FCPA.
  • Farm worker 1989-91.
  • Accountant 1991-94.
  • Rural banker 1994-98.
  • Self-employed accountant 1998-2005.

Military Service

  • Royal Queensland Regiment 1995-2003.

Electorate

  • Description: rural.

    Location: northern New South Wales highlands; it includes the centres of Armidale, Barraba, Bundarra, Deepwater, Glen Innes, Gunnedah, Guyra, Inverell, Manilla, Quirindi, Tamworth, Tenterfield, Uralla, Walcha, Werris Creek and parts of Delungra and Urbenville.

    Area: 59 344 sq km (approx.).

    Electors enrolled: 102 116 (at 7.9.13).

    Industries: cattle, sheep, grain, forestry, dairying, oats, maize, fruit, vegetables, tin-mining, bricks, trout hatchery, tourism, concrete pipe works, leather goods, tannery, gemstones, tobacco, lucerne, honey, grain processing, rubber industry, plaster works and concrete. The electorate also includes the University of New England.
    State electorates: New England includes parts of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly electorates of Lismore, Northern Tablelands, Tamworth and Upper Hunter.

Honours

  • Paul Harris Fellow, Rotary Foundation.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Federal Services ....

IMG 5949 

Privatization is the buzz word around at the moment.  We have a state and Federal government who are both big on privatization. But how far do people want to think about this as a real concern?

What is already in place here in Australia that is work ready to be changed over immediately the trade deals come into play?

The Australian Public Service Department has been largely contracted out to private corporations.  Immigration Centres are run by Serco Corporation.  My concern at present is with the Police Force of each state as well as our Federal Police Force.  What would life be like under a privatized police service?

Have the officers themselves thought about this scenario becoming a reality?  Has the Police Union addressed this matter?  These are all questions I have about this.  

If I were to rely on my spidey sense I would have to say its a real concern.

The Minister's Council on Asylum Seekers and Detention provides independent advice to the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection on policies...   So when you read through you begin to wonder why would SERCO want to cut them out?  See the PDF
.http://www.border.gov.au/AccessandAccountability/Documents/FOI/FA140901146.pdf#search=Serco

There are a lot of reasons why so much privatization is a concern because of the TPP (trade agreements)

British owned corporation SERCO are raking in the money from asylum seekers and detention centres here in Australia.  I find it interesting that it is one of the biggest companies in the world and its British.  (Colonists).
Read this story about "What is SERCO Hiding" from the Sydney Morning Herald in May 2013.
Excerpt:
 “Serco's transition from reporting entity in 2003 to non-reporting entity in 2012 is another in a growing list of known examples of bad financial reporting practice. That list seems to be growing in size even faster than Serco.”
Below here is a tweet I have read that gives me more cause for concern regarding this.

Agencies


Images @ Eminpee Fotography