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Daily Pickings is a blog on issues and events related to the work of the Critical Thinking project and invariably references videos, articles, books and academic papers. Accumulation of these materials adds to the "Critical Thinking reference library". Use the search facility to find articles on specific topics or you can browse the titles of every Dailly Pickings article since inception via the Site Map for which you need to be registered.
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In no particular order

The debate around intelligent design, accidental evolution and the origins of life and the universe is unlikely to be resolved anytime soon but increasingly, the balance of argument seems to be shifting away from the certainty of both atheism and religious belief. Science has moved beyond Einstein's theory of relativity although has yet to explain how we and the universe came to exist.

Proof Of 'God Playing Dice With The Universe' Found In The Sun's Interior by Ethan Siegel
In the 1920s, the world of physics was swept by two major revolutions: General Relativity, which put forth spacetime and the fact that matter and energy curved it as the cause of gravitation, and quantum mechanics, which detailed that all the particles in the Universe also acted like waves. Because of some fundamental properties in quantum physics, it was inherently a non-deterministic theory, meaning that you could only talk about probabilities of certain outcomes occurring, rather than knowing what would result from a particular setup. Two of the most important physicists of the time, Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr, had a number of famous (and public) debates over whether the Universe was inherently deterministic or not, with Einstein arguing yes and Bohr arguing no.

In looking for answers, it seems we cannot rely on science and empirical evidence alone; great thinkers, such as Pythagoras, sought answers beyond abstract rationality and undoubtedly there is much more to these issues than we currently understand. Natural Inclusion is concerned with looking beyond the empirical to within ourselves to recognise our true nature and our "place" in the universe.

The Vitality of the Intangible by Alan Rayner
Crossing The Threshold Between Abstract Materialism and Natural Reality

SCIENCE, SYSTEMS, SPIRIT:TOWARDS LOCAL AND GLOBAL SOCIETIES WITH THE SENSE AND ESSENCE OF INCLUSIONALITY by  Anne Stijkel, PhD
With worldwide signs of growing awareness of Inclusionality, at all levels in Science, Systems and Spirit, there are reasons of hope for our Society. In this paper I first will describe the concept of inclusionality and its impact for each of us and for our Systems. What is the essence, does it make sense, and if yes, how does it make sense? According to biologist Alan Rayner, inclusionality is “an awareness that space, far from passively surrounding and isolating discrete massy objects, is a vital dynamic inclusion within, around and permeating natural form across all scales of organisation, allowing diverse possibilities for movement and communication. Correspondingly, boundaries are no fixed limits – smooth, space-excluding, Euclidean lines or planes – but rather are pivotal places comprising complex, dynamic arrays of voids and relief that emerge from and pattern the co-creative togetherness of inner and outer domains, as in the banks of a river”. Cognate concepts as autopoiesis, holarchy and cocreation will also be described. Next I will shortly explore which attemps are being made by our Institute to bring inclusionality into practice. It can be seen as an unfolding process with many counterforces, from inside and outside, with Nature as a mirror and a mentor, combined with lessons and tools from spiritual intelligence, nonviolent communication, as well as from the the cocreators agreements, in the evolutionary process of ‘being, becoming and dissolving’. An open-end story about ‘how we can become (inclusive) intelligent enough to survive and convive as an interdependent society in biocultural diversity’.  

The Nine Spiritual Capacities by Roy Reynolds
“The human person is a threshold where many infinities meet.” - John O’Donohue
“What we call ‘I’ is just a swinging door which moves when we inhale and when we exhale.” - Shunryu Suzuki

Despicable UK

Cognitive dissonance abounds throughout the world but the reality gap in the UK yawns to obscenity. Whether we're talking about the planned Grenfell Inquiry (pre-ordained whitewash like every other such inquiry), the militarisation of police or the corrupt judiciary and the abuse of children, media reporting in the UK is at an all time low. Common Purpose and other sinister forces have closed down real journalism in the public sphere. Fortunately for us, there are alternative sources of information.

UK Column News - 15th September 2017 (47 minutes)

Within yesterday's broadcast, UK Column recommended Peter Cherbi's blog for information on the conflicts of interest in the Scottish judicial system and the wider implications.

SUPREME SECRETS: UK Supreme Court refuses to publish recusal data - Court rejects release of info on UKSC justices' conflicts of interest in response to Freedom of Information recusals probe on top UK court
Top UK court obstructed Scots media judicial recusals probe. THE UK Supreme Court (UKSC) has refused to disclose how many of it’s justices have recused themselves from court hearings over conflicts of interest or requests to step aside from cases.

UK Column also highlights the move towards the police state in which all dissent is quashed.

The race is on: awareness versus repression.

Don't get fooled again

What starts wars? Looking back through history, invariably the "attacks" or atrocities that we are told prompted declarations of war in the past have been false flag operations to place the blame with those targeted for destruction. This anonymous article is well referenced and collates reliable sources. There is plenty of evidence to corroborate what is reported.

History of American False Flag Operations
The leaders of smaller and less industrialised nations are not madmen (whatever the media claims). They also are generally better informed than their citizens. In a war an attacker does not need equal forces compared to the enemy. The attacker needs a 5-fold local superiority, or better. No one begins wars without very definite objectives and a quick victory in sight. If a war with more even military balance erupts, someone has been mislead and walked into a trap (usually arranged by third party).

Amid the hysterical reports of North Korea firing a missile over Japan, this phrase (in Bold) in Tyler Durden's piece reveals a clue as to the possible originating source of the missile: "Japan's cabinet minister Suga said that the missile situation is similar to that on August 29, NHK adds, and that Japan will take appropriate response in contact with the US and South Korea. NHK adds that Japan did not attempt to shoot down the missile though the South Korean military has confirmed it fired a test missile into the sea as part of training drill."

North Korea Fires Ballistic Missile Over Japan; US Demands China, Russia "Take Direct Actions" by Tyler Durden

In propaganda, you are presented with what will provoke the desired reaction. Don't get fooled again...

Optimism

Highlighting what's wrong with the world, making connections between cause and effect within the abusive, oppressive and destructive political economy can lead to pessimism and a sense of hopelessness.

Yes, we humans are in a dire place but in spite of this and all the systems to suppress human freedom and creativity, below the radar, magic happens.

There are too many instances and examples to start listing but in communities people are creating alternatives to foster self-reliance, co-creation and freedom. We've mentioned a few examples in the past and here's another.

The Peasant Evolution Producers' Co-Operative
More than 2000 people visited the field last year on courses, day visits or as helpers. We produce food for local people and visitors but the main purpose of Ourganics is to be a place of inspiration and learning.

Human creativity and love explodes within the system - yes one can point to the cynical manipulation of arts, music etc. but at base one cannot suppress essential human joy. Tastes vary and there are too many instances to cite but here's one which catches the essence of what we humans are capable of.

Be optimistic - knowledge and understanding is power...