Janas, Faeries, Foel Drygarn, Denisovans, Self-domestication, Psilocybin, Wim Hof, Hyperthymesia, The Tjapwurung





“The Janas are imaginary creatures of the Sardinian popular tradition, tiny women with a volatile temperament, a bit witches and a bit fairies, both kind and naughty”





What are the faeries? Where do they come from and where do they go when they’re not interacting with their human observers? Faeries have been an important part of the folkloric repertoire for hundreds (perhaps even thousands) of years, and while they are portrayed in the popular imagination through faerie tales and have become disneyfied through the 20th century, their main presence is in the myriad of folktales and anecdotes from every part of the globe.





Above is a drone image (courtesy Iain P) of one of the most famous prehistoric sites in Wales– Foel Drygarn (the bare hill with three cairns) at the eastern end of Mynydd Preseli.  There are four different components to the site:

  1.  the three prominent hill summit cairns, believed to be Bronze Age burial mounds;
  2.  the defensive embankments and walls associated with a defended settlement, assumed to be Iron Age;
  3.  the multiple pits, hollows or little platforms believed to mark the sites of around 270 huts;
  4.  the rampart of crags running across the southern part of the fortified site.

Iain has made available some fabulous drone footage of the site,  here:






The first wave of archaic hominin migration out of Africa which expanded as far into Southern Asia as Indonesia and China, Homo erectus, probably never reached Northern Asia in any significant numbers.

But, before modern humans arrived in Northern Asia, Denisovans and Neanderthals (archaic hominins) reached at least as far as the Altai Mountains. We don’t know with much precision when they arrived there or by precisely what route, but both were present in the Altai region around 90,000 years ago when a child with one Denisovan parent and one Neanderthal parent was born. Sometime after 40,000 years ago, they became extinct (or at least almost extinct) in the region. We don’t know if they ever overlapped with modern humans in that region, but the timing of the latest evidence of their presence in Northern Asia and the earliest evidence of a modern human presence in Northern Asia is suspiciously close in time. Ancient Altai Neanderthal DNA shows evidence as admixture with modern humans that was estimated to have taken place ca. 100,000 years ago, but these admixture events probably took place with their ancestors in Southwest Asia, rather than Northern Asia.

Ancient DNA and archaeology establishes that the original modern humans in Siberia (who arrived there about 38,000 years ago), the “Ancient North Siberians” (ANS) were wiped out during the Last Glacial Maximum (about 20,000 years ago) except for refugia populations in Beringia (and possibly also the Altai Mountains region) who contributed to Ancient Paleosiberian gene pools.

Ancient DNA also confirms the hypothesis that Siberia was the source for both the “Ancient Paleosiberian” (AP) population that emerged after the Last Glacial Maximum which gave rise to the founding population of the Americas (which has only a few relict tribes in Siberia itself who are their descendants), and for the East Asian shifted “Neosiberian” populations that largely replaced the Ancient Paleosiberians around 11,000 years ago who were a genetic source for Na-Dene and Inuit Native Americans ancestors’ migration to the Americas and most modern indigenous Siberians.

In the last 7000 years or so, there have been more waves of migration across Northern Asia, although some of these waves did not reach all of the way to far Northeastern Siberia.

First, Uralic populations migrated West and East from central Siberia (starting ca. 5000 BCE).





When it comes to species, says biological anthropologist Rebecca Ackermann, “forget everything you learned in high school.”

The classic textbook definition, known as the biological species concept, is a group of organisms that only produce fertile offspring with one another. By this rule, domesticated dogs are a single species — whether dachshund or Great Dane — but a donkey and a horse are not.

Ackermann, a professor at South Africa’s University of Cape Town, favors a different definition that’s not dependent on successful sex: a group of organisms sharing a mix of anatomical, behavioral and genetic traits that distinguishes them from other groups. But, she adds, “Many, many evolutionary biologists I know often avoid the word species entirely.”

That’s because the evolutionary tree is tangled, and many organisms on diverging branches can still interbreed. “Canids have, pigs have, mice have. You name it, and it has,” says University of Georgia evolutionary biologist Michael Arnold. “There’s a hybrid under every bush.”

That includes our ancestors. Genetic evidence has shown that ancient Homo sapiens interbred with Neanderthals and their eastern cousins, Denisovans, several times from 100,000 to 40,000 years ago. Neanderthals and Denisovans mated with each other, and Denisovans hooked up with a distant lineage, not yet known from fossils, that may have been closer to the earlier Homo erectus.

In recent ancient DNA studies, almost “every time a new individual is sequenced from the human fossil record,” says Ackermann, “there’s some new piece of evidence for gene flow.”


As Homo sapiens expanded globally, they confronted new environments, foods and diseases. The migrants could have evolved adaptations to those pressures, but it would have taken many generations.

Some groups, however, were able to speed up that process: By mating with Neanderthals and Denisovans they encountered in their new world, the lineages of the newly arrived Homo sapiens could have acquired locally adaptive genes related to skin and hair color, metabolism and immunity over mere decades. “That jumps so far ahead of what you could achieve through natural selection,” says Ackermann. “Hybridization had a serious effect, a big impact on people.”




What is self-domestication?

The heterochronic processes operate on time and the rate of transformation of the shape and size of the individuals of a species relative to another species, so that the development is extended or cut and rate slows down or accelerates. For example, today’s dogs are smaller than their ancestors the wolves, have the round head, a short nose in subadult and a docile behavior.

Bonobos (Pan paniscus) are very different from the common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) . These are very aggressive, able to kill other similar and even offspring, and are organized into groups with a very strong personal and sexual hierarchy. Instead, bonobos are more tolerant, and his group does not have much importance the hierarchy, can quietly share food, and young couples. Well, bonobos have some parts of their body proportions of a subadult common chimpanzee.

Why does this happen? According to the hypothesis of self -domestication , the evolutionary process favored retention youthful features and cut develop morphological structures that may be associated with aggressive behavior, especially on the face, as the size of the teeth or the bulging of the supraorbital region. This would promote collaborative group behavior and socialization

Translate this into Homo sapiens supposed self -domestication associate the unique features of our species, such as spherical skull, short face, loss of body hair or explosion of creativity and technological innovation. However, these traits have evolved in mosaic: the spherical skull itself is associated with the morphology sapiens from about 200,000 years ago, but the shortening of the face and other features already anticipated in species like Homo ergaster and Homo antecessor a million years, loss of body hair would probably be linked to the development of a body completely modern Homo ergaster , and the creative explosion begins between 100,000 and 60,000 years.

On the other hand, if we look at the face, our species is characterized by neoteny, ie the conservation of juvenile traits in adults compared with the ancestress species or other related. The face of a Homo sapiens adult is strikingly similar to that of a Homo neanderthalensis child.

It is thought that this process has accelerated since Neolithic times. There is a correlation between the development of human societies larger and loss of muscle mass and reduced body size. Social development has remained reduced aggressiveness in our species, although many different THINK … Although we can not associate this to the creative explosion and curiosity that pushed us to colonize the world, since they occurred much earlier. We can not rule that lower body is associated with other adaptations, as an evolutionary response to hormonal reconfiguration result of transformation of human physical activity. In any case, several recent studies support the hypothesis of self-domestication:





An Appaloosa gelding named Joker took 2 minutes and 20 seconds earlier this month to find a carefully hidden volunteer in a 13-acre, semi-wooded field near Terrebonne.

Jefferson County Sheriff Jim Adkins watched, astonished, as Joker and rider George Ehmer, 66, of Milton-Freewater nosed out the hidden volunteer.

It was a dramatic and spectacular demonstration of what practioners call “equine air-scenting.” The event was organized by a loosely knit central Oregon group that hopes to use horses in the role of bloodhounds during future backcountry searches.

“They’ve definitely got my attention,” Adkins said Wednesday . “That was a pretty difficult search because the wind kept changing on us. That horse just went right over there and zigged and zagged and zoomed right in.”

Horsewoman Kate Beardsley of Redmond arranged the search demonstration with Laurie Adams of Camp Sherman. The pair are assembling a team of a dozen air-scent trained horses and riders that they hope eventually will be deployed around the Northwest when hunters, hikers and others go missing.

“A lot of people don’t know that horses do this at all,” said Beardsley. “Laurie and I are focused on saving lives.”


Chatterboxes by nature, horses communicate with other horses via a complex equine sign language of ear movements, body posture, neck swings, head positions, snorts and exhalations. Riders seldom have a clue what’s being said, but horses are stoic about that, said Beardsley.

“They say to themselves, ‘I’ve got a stupid human, and I’ll just put up with it,'” she said.

Accordingly, most of Nowacki’s clinic time is focused on teaching riders to understand what their horses are trying to communicate.




What is at stake now is not only the value-basis of the U.S. dollar and the continuance of America’s NATO alliance against Russia, but, more basically than either, is the full realization of the dream by Cecil Rhodes in 1877 and of George Soros today, for a unified and all-inclusive UK-U.S. empire to become ruler over the entire world — the first-ever all-encompassing global empire. Britain importantly bonded King Saud and his family to its Empire, at the time of World War I, against the Ottoman Empire. That was the Sauds’ alliance against Turkey’s empire.

After World War II, U.S. became the leader of this joint UK-US empire, as Rhodes had expected ultimately to happen. Ever since 2000, Erdogan has been scheming to restore Turkey’s role as the world’s primary Islamic empire, and so to squelch the Saud family’s aspirations to achieve dominance over global Islam. Ever since 1744, the Saud family has been trying to achieve that dominance as being the fundamentalist-Sunni champion against the fundamentalist-Shiite leadership since 1979 in Iran. But, now, the Sunni Sauds’ main competitor might no longer be Shiite Iran, but instead turn out to be Sunni Turkey, after all — which had been the Sauds’ main enemy at the very start of the 20th Century.

What will the U.S. do, as the collapse of its aristocracy’s dream of global conquest after the fall of communism, is now gathering force even to bring into question such key former allies of America’s aristocracy, as Turkey, and as the world’s richest family (by far), the Saud family (the owners of Saudi Arabia)?


As this is being written, on October 19th, there has been speculation that the Saudi Government is planning to admit that individual(s) in it had made bad errors, which tragically ended in a botched interrogation of Khashoggi at the Consulate in Istanbul. This response would not be credible in any case, because of the long history, going back decades, of prominent potential opponents of the Saud family being inexplicably disappeared and never heard from (or about) again.

For one example, the headline from this past May 30th, six months ago, remains current news, as of even today: “NAWAF AL RASHEED, SON OF PRINCE TALAL BIN ABDULAZIZ AL RASHEED, DISAPPEARED SINCE MAY 12 DEPORTATION TO SAUDI ARABIA”. And, going back to before Crown Prince Salman, to the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing ‘suspects’, all of them simply disappeared, never to be heard from (or about) again — no public trial, nothing at all. There are many such cases, of many different kinds. This is normal Saudi practice — not abnormal at all. What is abnormal is that Jamal Khashoggi had just been hired by perhaps the world’s second-wealthiest person, Jeff Bezos’s Washington Post, to write articles against the Crown-Prince son, and future heir, of overwhelmingly the world’s wealthiest person, King Salman. That’s what is different from those such prior instances.




If anything, Wahhabism is the very negation of Islam. As many have called it before – Islam is not Wahhabism. Wahhabism is merely the misguided expression of one man’s political ambition – Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab, a man who was recruited by Empire Britain to erode at the fabric of Islam and crack the unity of its ummah (community).

As Wahhabism began its land and mind grab in Hijaz – now known as Saudi Arabia – one family, Al Saud saw in this violent and reactionary school of thought a grand opportunity to claim and retain power. This unholy alliance has blotted the skies of Arabia for centuries, darkening the horizon with its miasms.

Wahhabism has now given birth to a monstrous abomination – extreme radicalism; a beast which has sprung and fed from Salafis and Wahhabis poison, fueled by the billions of Al Saud’s petrodollars; a weapon exploited by neo-imperialists to justify military interventions in those wealthiest corners of the world.

But though those powers which thought themselves cunning by weaving a network of fear around the world to better assert and enslave are losing control over their brain-child, ISIS and its sisters in hate and fury, as they all have gone nuclear, no longer bound by the chains their fathers shackled them with.

ISIS’s obscene savagery epitomises the violence which is inherent and central to Wahhabism and Salafism – its other deviance. And though the world knows now the source of all terror, no power has yet dared speak against it, instead the world has chosen to hate its designated victim – Islam.






The Turkish account of the murder of Khashoggi given by President Erdogan is true, in every detail. Audio and video evidence exists and has been widely shared with world intelligence agencies, including the US, UK, Russia and Germany, and others which have a relationship with Turkey or are seen as influential. That is why, despite their desperate desire to do so, no Western country has been able to maintain support for Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. I have not seen the video from inside the consulate, but have been shown stills which may be from a video. The most important thing to say is that they are not from a fixed position camera and appear at first sight consistent with the idea they are taken by a device brought in by the victim. I was only shown them briefly. I have not heard the audio recording.

There are many things to learn from the gruesome murder other than the justified outrage at the event itself. It opens a window on the truly horrible world of the extremely powerful and wealthy.

The first thing to say is that the current Saudi explanation, that this was an intended interrogation and abduction gone wrong, though untrue, does have one thing going for it. It is their regular practice. The Saudis have for years been abducting dissidents abroad and returning them to the Kingdom to be secretly killed. The BBC World Service often contains little pockets of decent journalism not reflected in its main news outlets, and here from August 2017 is a little noticed piece on the abduction and “disappearance” of three other senior Saudis between 2015-17. Interestingly, while the piece was updated this month, it was not to include the obvious link to the Khashoggi case.





New research in the journal Evolution Letters has uncovered evidence for the functional purpose of psilocybin in fungi. It’s there to screw with insects; specifically, those insects that wouldn’t mind chowing down on a fungi’s mushroom or on the food that fungi themselves like to eat—dung and wood.

Part of what’s made it so difficult to pin down the purpose of psilocybin in mushrooms is that psilocybin-producing mushrooms are mostly not related to one another. It doesn’t appear as though a common ancestor developed the ability to produce psilocybin and passed it down to its offspring. Instead, five distinct, distantly related families of fungi make psilocybin.

Psilocybin is a secondary metabolite, meaning it’s an organic compound not involved in the growth, development, or reproduction of the fungi itself. Necessarily, its expensive to produce secondary metabolites, and psilocybin in particular is a complicated molecule to make. So, it’s extremely weird that it’s popped up in disparate species of fungi.


It’s unlikely that psilocybin production evolved in distinct mushroom species spontaneously, and since these species aren’t related, it’s pretty clear that vertical gene transfer—passing down genes from parent to child—is not responsible either. Instead, the researchers surmised that horizontal gene transfer must be the culprit.

Horizontal gene transfer doesn’t take up much space in the general public’s understanding of evolution. We typically think of evolution as gradual, random changes in the gene that accidentally improve the species’ fitness in its environment, which are then passed down to offspring. But genetic material can also be passed between distinct but co-existing species.

While there are a few different mechanisms for horizontal gene transfer, larger critters probably receive genes from other species via transposons, genes that mostly do nothing besides jump around in the DNA and cause problems. Sometimes, transposons take another gene along with them, occasionally getting mixed up with viruses, insects, or other third parties who then deposit the gene into another species.

As an example, the transposon BovB makes up about a quarter of cows’ genome, and it’s also found in snakes, zebrafish, geckos, and other random species. Rather than there being a branch on the tree of life that traces a distinct line of critters with BovB, instead it looks more like a Jackson Pollock painting—random islands of animals with the BovB gene. Clearly, BovB didn’t get to these disparate species by a common ancestor. Instead, it jumped around, hitching rides with third-parties like viruses and insects. Here’s a video explainer.




During his long existential journey, Wim Hof came face to face with nature’s most primordial elements. Staring right back, the merciless cold and bountiful air revealed an energy now lost to most of modern society, dormant inside all of us and waiting to be reawakened.

Having embraced these majestic forces, and breaking record after record in a range of death-defying feats, Wim resolved to share this discovery with the rest of the world. He gradually whittled his accrued insight down to the core essentials, so that people young and old, healthy and sick could tap into this potential without having to invest the same decades worth of study, travel and daring.





Actress Marilu Henner (Taxi) can recall specific details from almost every day in her life. She has hyperthymesia, a rare condition that only she and 10 other people in the world are proven by tests to possess. In this 60 Minutes(Australian version) segment, Henner talks with her about “superior autobiographical memory.” She considers it a gift but others interviewed consider it a burden.





A cold winter’s night in south Wales back on February 26, 2016, was anything but ordinary in one Welsh town, some say.

In a scene worthy of an episode of the X-Files, multiple witnesses reported seeing a huge UFO and other lights – along with military planes, helicopters, a chase, explosions, shaken buildings, damaged trees and wreckage in Pentyrch.




What Psychedelic Research Can and Cannot Tell Us about Consciousness

A recent Scientific American blog post misconstrues and oversimplifies the research




What do all these influential intellectuals all have in common?

  1. Communism (Marx)
  2. Sexual depravity (Freud)
  3. Corporate Leftism (Bernays)
  4. Multiculturalism (Horace Kallen)
  5. Deconstructivism/Critical Theory (Walter Benjamin)
  6. Frankfurt School (Adorno)
  7. Radical jurisprudence (Brandeis, Frankfurter, and Cardozo)
  8. Large-scale, non-selective immigration (Israel Zangwill, Emma Lazarus)

They are all linked to Sabbatean-Frankism, a distinct quasi-Satanic schism within Jewry. The extraordinary prevalence of Sabbatean-Frankist influence among top Jewish intellectuals from 1850-1950 makes it statistically impossible to deny its role because of the impossible coincidences.

The Sabbatean-Frankists sought to invert traditional Jewish-Christian values, including the 10 Commandments, restrictions on debauched sexuality, man’s dominion over the environment, etc. Further, given Sabbatean-Frankism’s apocalyptic nature, the modern Left is riven with irrational destructive impulses.

This general thesis has been explored by historians Paul Johnson and Gershom Scholem, but never in such detail. There are several implications of this thesis:





The Israel military’s horrific record of atrocities has long been established. From using civilians as human shields to blanketing civilian areas with cluster bombs and killing journalists, there is no defensible moral code governing the actions of the Israeli military.

But things took an even more grotesque turn last week, when the Israeli military’s spokesperson for Arab audiences, Avichay Adraee, published a twopart Arabic video on Twitter, employing blatant anti-Shia rhetoric and citing some of the scholars the so-called Islamic State (ISIS or IS) relies on, as a means of mobilizing Sunni Arab hostility towards Iran. Take a moment to get your head around this: At a time when the U.S. is committed to eradicating IS and its offshoots in the Middle East, Israel is working in the other direction, promoting the very ideology animating these groups.

Adraee’s video doesn’t incite sectarianism in passing. It digs deep into centuries-old religious texts to promote hostility towards Shias, then translates that into anti-Iranian arguments. The video opens with Adraee accusing Hamas of promoting Iran’s agenda in the region, thereby “officially becoming Shia, according to the honored sayings of the prophet.”

Adraee then addresses his audience, saying: “have you not read the writings of religious scholars… who have clearly and candidly warned you about the threat of Iranian-style Shiism to you and your people?” The scholars Adraee cites represent the ideological roots of groups like IS. For instance, Adraee quotes Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab, an 18th-century preacher who inspired an extreme and intolerant strain of Islam, as saying that the Shias “are more damaging to [Islam] than the Jews and Christians.”





Does evolutionary theory need a rethink? Yes, urgently

Without an extended evolutionary framework, the theory neglects key processes, say Kevin Laland and colleagues.

Charles Darwin conceived of evolution by natural selection without knowing that genes exist. Now mainstream evolutionary theory has come to focus almost exclusively on genetic inheritance and processes that change gene frequencies.

Yet new data pouring out of adjacent fields are starting to undermine this narrow stance. An alternative vision of evolution is beginning to crystallize, in which the processes by which organisms grow and develop are recognized as causes of evolution.

Some of us first met to discuss these advances six years ago. In the time since, as members of an interdisciplinary team, we have worked intensively to develop a broader framework, termed the extended evolutionary synthesis1 (EES), and to flesh out its structure, assumptions and predictions. In essence, this synthesis maintains that important drivers of evolution, ones that cannot be reduced to genes, must be woven into the very fabric of evolutionary theory.

We believe that the EES will shed new light on how evolution works. We hold that organisms are constructed in development, not simply ‘programmed’ to develop by genes. Living things do not evolve to fit into pre-existing environments, but co-construct and coevolve with their environments, in the process changing the structure of ecosystems.

The number of biologists calling for change in how evolution is conceptualized is growing rapidly. Strong support comes from allied disciplines, particularly developmental biology, but also genomics, epigenetics, ecology and social science1, 2. We contend that evolutionary biology needs revision if it is to benefit fully from these other disciplines. The data supporting our position gets stronger every day.





The Tjapwurung, an Aboriginal people in what is now southern Australia, shared the story of this bird hunt from generation to generation across an unbelievably large slice of time—many more millennia than one might think possible. The birds (most likely the species with the scientific name Genyornis newtoni) memorialized in this tale are now long extinct. Yet the story of the Tjapwurung’s “tradition respecting the existence” of these birds conveys how people pursued the giant animals. At the time of this particular hunt, between 5,000 and 10,000 years ago, volcanoes in the area were erupting, wrote amateur ethnographer James Dawson in his 1881 book Australian Aborigines, and so scientists have been able to corroborate this oral history by dating volcanic rocks.

The extraordinary antiquity of such stories, which represent knowledge passed on largely orally, was not demonstrable until recently. This has allowed the full extent and implications of the longevity of the memories on which these stories are based to be appreciated. Another such oral history surrounds the Klamath people of Oregon, in the western U.S., who tell of a time when there was no Crater Lake, only a giant volcano towering over the landscape where the lake is today. As the story goes, the fractious volcano god, besotted with a local beauty, threatened the Klamath with fury and fire unless the woman acquiesced. But her people called upon their protector—a rival deity—who fought the volcano god, eventually causing his mountain home to collapse in on him and fill with water. For the next approximately 7,600 years, the Klamath taught each new generation the importance of avoiding Crater Lake lest they disturb the evil god within. With remarkable precision, geologists have determined that this is the time of the terminal eruption of the former volcano, Mount Mazama, and the creation of the landscape that exists today. The Klamath were there all along, and their memories of that ancient cataclysmic event have passed into global knowledge today.


One common legend from France’s Brittany coast tells how a city named Ys existed in Douarnenez Bay at a time when the ocean surface was lower than today. King Gradlon, who ruled from Ys, had protected it from the ocean by building elaborate sea barriers that allowed overwash to be drained from the city every low tide through a series of sluice gates. But at high tide one night, his daughter Dahut, possessed by demons, opened the gates, allowing the ocean to flood the city and forcing its abandonment. Today no one knows where the city of Ys once was. Using the same reasoning as for Fitzroy Island, it seems possible that if Ys ever existed—and why should we believe such a persistent story with an otherwise obscure subject was invented—its drowning occurred more than 8,000 years ago.




By this definition, shamanism is the landscape of the spirit-journey, populated by good and evil spirits and the souls of the deceased and yet-to-be-born. It is the place where mountains speak and Grandmother Skeleton points out which plants to eat when the dry season lasts too long. In this form, shamanism is everywhere in the old ways of humans. Every tribal culture – alive or dead – has some broker of spiritual capital. The Indonesian Mentawai have their sikerei. The Inuit have their angakok. The Columbian Desana have their paye. The Mongolian Buryat have their böö. The American Sioux have their heyoka.

The sheer magnitude of our shamanic ancestry means one of two things: either shamanism originated once prior to the human diaspora some 70,000 years ago and has been preserved since, or it has arisen independently countless times in premodern human cultures. If we consider that preagricultural human societies are each experiments in how to run a village, with each competing in the evolutionary market of survival and reproduction, then we must ask: what good is shamanism?

The answer is a lesson in both the psychology of problem solving and the construction of meaning. In order to get there, we first have to understand what the prominent explanations of shamanism are in contemporary anthropology. These explanations all rely upon a common set of psychological and evolutionary principles, and these principles in turn explain the adaptive value of shamanism.


The mind’s use of randomness is how we think new thoughts and come up with creative solutions to vexing problems. This is an inbuilt feature of minds such as ours, and one we don’t often notice. If you sit quietly and let your mind wander, you can get a glimpse of this randomness at work, as your daydreams put together odd combinations in a kind of Rube Goldberg approach to problem solving.

But we also use randomness more purposefully. For example, when we use practices such as the I Ching or Tarot card readings, we are engaging in a form of exploratory divination.

Such practices have been used for thousands of years to help people understand their problems by confronting them with meaningful but random interpretations. Appropriately used, these methods can help to escape one’s natural biases by being forced to consider alternative hypotheses. These can, upon consideration, lead to new insights, especially in situations where there are no competing solutions.



Hello folks. I’m still plodding along here. There’s Winter Solstice and Christmas coming up on the horizon, and then the days will begin to get longer again.

I don’t know whether I’ll survive through another year. I just keep going, one day at a time.

When I awake after a sleep I get a massive surge of vivid memories of all kinds, from all periods of my life back to early childhood. I think this is because my brain is still mending and renewing connections after the stroke, about sixteen months ago.

Many of the physical problems that followed that event have improved a lot, but my right leg remains only half useful. But I am optimistic that my body knows what it’s doing and is fixing stuff according to priorities, so my leg may yet improve.

I’m having a wonderful hermit life here, enjoying the mad rush of information from the internet each day, and hobbling up the mountain to work on hedges and fruit trees for a couple of hours, to get exercise.

I was told by a medical person, who seemed to have authority on the matter based on her experience, that I must force the leg (and the rest of me that it’s attached to) to exercise to regain blood circulation. Otherwise it’ll just think that everything’s fine and not bother to renew itself.

So this is what I do. Eat, sleep, do this blog, and push my physical body up the hill, with my secateurs, small folding pruning saw, and walking stick. Then I cut whatever I think needs cutting. It’s all very overgrown with brambles and stuff. And gradually I rediscover the fruit trees that I planted years ago.

Back then I had a plan, to prove that it’s possible to grow apples and damsons and so forth, at this height and exposure, following permaculture principles, even though –  or because, haha – everyone said it’s impossible.

And I’ve proved myself right, which pleases me immensely, because there were loads of apples this year, even though the trees are still small and young and have been neglected. That success is because the mountainside faces due south, so gets all available sunshine, despite the exposure to fierce winds and high rainfall. In the Spring, there’s about three weeks difference, that much later here, 800ft.+ above Newport, down at sea level.

I got inspired by that idea after learning about the amazing Bardsey Apple.



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686 Responses to Janas, Faeries, Foel Drygarn, Denisovans, Self-domestication, Psilocybin, Wim Hof, Hyperthymesia, The Tjapwurung

  1. ulvfugl says:

  2. ulvfugl says:

  3. ulvfugl says:

  4. ulvfugl says:

  5. ulvfugl says:

    They will investigate anything and everything and I wonder, will voters who are leftists figure out the obvious? Will they see they have been snookered? Of course, eliminating rival news systems, censorship of anyone and everyone who has a different point of view than the rich globalists like Bezos is how these new dictators will operate.

    US workers are watching an army of illegal aliens demanding they be allowed across the borders and the DNC super rich California and New York crews who hold power in these two states due to enabling illegal aliens to vote and keep them in power, will let in this army of new workers at the bottom rungs of the economic ladder because this is how they keep wages very low! DUH.


  6. ulvfugl says:

    The chief prosecutor of Saudi Arabia cleared his boss, clown prince Muhammad bin Salman, of involvement in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. A number of easily replaceable people were indicted. In a coordinated move the U.S. Treasury sanctioned a number of the people who played a role in the Khashoggi case. There is an interesting difference between the Saudi and the U.S. list of the involved people. Meanwhile the White House is looking for ways to induce Turkey to finally settle the case.

    The Saudi prosecutor indicted eleven people and demands the death penalty for five of them. It is not yet known under which article of Saudi law the people were indicted. Death penalties under some articles often end with pardons. Ten other persons are still under investigation.

    The story told in the briefing of the Saudi investigation results gives a new version of the events. (No names are given in the briefing. They were added below based on earlier reports.) The briefing says:


  7. ulvfugl says:

    This is all nonsense of course.

    The only question really is whether or not Assiri will get the chop himself or if they can let him off by saying that the leading choppee will by some less useful creature.

    Almost any fool can understand that in the absolute monarchy of Saudi Arabia the servants of the king would not dare to undertake such an operation without the royal assent and in this case that means the crown prince, the king being presently reduced to the kind of person who finds his lost car keys in the refrigerator. Or, that would be true if he had ever had any car keys.

    So, what will the Donald do? My WAG would be that Trump will avert his eyes from the obvious falsehood and accept the head choppings as sufficient explanation. There is just too much at risk in financial “pork” available in SA for American industry for him to do anything else. pl


  8. ulvfugl says:

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    The history of Western civilization has been interspersed with episodes of military conflict on such a monumental scale that any defeat would have reversed the course of history forever.

    Consider the Battle of Tours. Beginning in 711 AD, a Muslim army under the Umayyad caliphate conquered a large swath of what is known today as Spain and Portugal, or the Iberian Peninsula. The tide began to recede only in 732 when the Germanic statesman and military leader, Charles Martel, with a force of some 20,000 men, emerged victorious against Muslim forces on a battlefield in southwestern France in what is known as the Battle of Tours.

    Military historian Victor Davis Hanson emphasized the importance of the conflict when he wrote that “most of the 18th and 19th century historians, like [Edward] Gibbon, saw (Tours), as a landmark battle that marked the high tide of the Muslim advance into Europe.”

    Martel’s victory represented the first chapter in a protracted effort – known as the Reconquista – a 780-year campaign on the part of the Christian kingdoms to uproot the Moors from the Iberian Peninsula. And it wasn’t until 1492, the year Columbus set sail to discover the New World, that the peninsula was fully controlled by Christian rulers.

    It makes for a compelling thought experiment to consider how a powerful historic figure, like Charles Martel, one of the founding figures of the European Middle Ages, would be received by today’s mainstream media, which has a acquired a very particular way of reporting on those modern European leaders – like Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban – who are simply motivated by the desire to strengthen Europe’s borders from illegal aliens. For an answer, one need only consider the breathtakingly biased BBC interview where Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó was told that his government was guided by “xenophobia” in its decision to prevent illegal migrants from entering the country.


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    After what was presumably a “long night of the soul” for Environment Secretary Michael Gove, the Tory cabinet minister has decided to split the difference in terms of decisions that would disappoint and delight his boss, Prime Minister Theresa May. He won’t take the Brexit Secretary post vacated on Thursday by Dominic Raab. But – for now, at least – the “tortured” Gove won’t be resigning, according to the London Times.


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    Flames as tall as 10-storey buildings burn day and night in the village of Ebedei, in Nigeria’s Niger Delta. But the heat from these fires is neither soft nor warm, it’s fierce and prickly.
    The constant noise sends wild animals fleeing, and people must shout to be heard over the roaring flames. Fields of crops, once green, have turned yellow or stopped growing entirely. The village no longer enjoys the respite of cool or darkness of night.
    In the oil-rich Niger Delta of southern Nigeria, 2 million people live within 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) of a gas flare. Below the flames, oil is being extracted. With the oil comes gas — considered by the oil industry to be a dangerous waste product to burned off in a process called gas flaring.
    And this flaring is on the rise again, despite promises to reduce it.


  18. ulvfugl says:

    Thanks to an ACLU victory in federal court, we know much more about how CIA doctors violated the medical oath to “do no harm.”

    One of the most important lessons of the CIA’s torture program is the way it corrupted virtually every individual and institution associated with it. Over the years, we have learned how lawyers twisted the law and psychologists betrayed their ethical obligations in order to enable the brutal and unlawful torture of prisoners.

    Now we’ve won the release of a 90-page account of the CIA’s Office of Medical Services role in the CIA torture program — a secret history written by the top CIA medical official, whose identity remains classified.


  19. ulvfugl says:

    Update (8 am ET): The pound is spiking heading into the US trading day, moving back above $1.28, as the anxieties over a potential leadership challenge and mass exodus of May’s cabinet.

    Some encouraging developments in the late morning: Parliment chief whip has canceled a meeting with lawmakers about the Brexit deal, according to Buzzfeed. And in an encouraging sign that the EU and the UK might be able to iron out some of the more controversial aspects of the backstop, EU ministers are expected to focus on changing the wording of the deal to stop it from potentially binding the UK to the customs union “indefinitely”. This would ameliorate the biggest concern voiced by intransigent Tory MPs.


  20. ulvfugl says:


    1 minute ago
    The Saudis have always backed all the horses in election races, this ain’t a ‘new thing’…

    Interesting tidbit: ” Aug 17, 2018 – Saudi Arabia increased its holdings of US government debt by around $2.8 billion in one month, reaching $164.9 billion in June 2018. ”

    Other Saudi Holdings

    AOL / Time Warner
    The Coca-Cola Company
    Motorola Mobility
    News Corporation
    Procter & Gamble
    Saks Incorporated
    SAMBA, Saudi American Bank
    Marvel Comics
    The Walt Disney Company

  21. ulvfugl says:

    Update (9:30 am ET): With just minutes to go before US cash trading opens, Bloomberg has shattered the peace created by reports that no more cabinet resignations would follow on Friday.

    Commons leader Andrea Leadsom is reportedly convening a group of five key cabinet ministers who are hoping to force a change of the Brexit draft plan.

    And if they can’t?

    A mass walkout would be likely in the run-up to May’s “meaningful vote.”


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    Global Google staff walked out and didn’t do their jobs a week ago and this didn’t make mainstream news virtually at all. Google only hires SJW staff that is already radicalized. Pichai knelt before the mob and promised to promote and hire mainly based on skin color and sexual deviances. Google is already strangling the internet due to ideology communistic desires. Millions of people now hate Google and I certainly hate Google very much. Note how Google is systematically destroying San Francisco and California: the grip on power grows while the grip on civilization slips off a cliff.


  24. ulvfugl says:

    Update (11:30 am ET): Those who speculated that May might assume the role of Brexit Secretary herself were half-right.

    Theresa May has appointed pro-Brexit MP Stephen Barclay, previously the minister of state at the department of health and social care, as her new Brexit minister. However, May is stripping the Department for Exiting the European Union of its primary responsibility and taking charge of Brexit negotiations herself.


  25. ulvfugl says:

    Meanwhile on Thursday Broward County submitted the results of its recount two minutes after the state’s 3pm deadline, voiding the results of its machine recount. Rick Scott says that Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes intentionally delayed the results so that the would be invalidated, after it was revealed that Scott would have seen a net gain of 779 votes if Snipes had submitted the results on time.

    “Basically, I just worked my ass off for nothing,” said Broward County election planning and development director Joseph D’Alessandro.

    “We uploaded to the state two minutes late so the state has chosen not to use our machine recount results,” said D’Alessandro, adding “They are going to use our first unofficial results as our second unofficial results.”


    3 hours ago
    This town has a dog as mayor:


  26. ulvfugl says:

    In the name of scientific “progress,” Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital in the United Kingdom recently tried to pioneer the use of a surgical robot that it tasked with repairing a patient’s damaged heart valve, only to have the machine go completely bonkers and ultimately kill the man on the operating table.

    According to reports, this first-time-use robot not only physically assaulted a living medic while attempting to conduct its programmed surgery, but also implanted stitches into the patient’s heart in a manner that physicians present during the fiasco described as notbeing in “an organised fashion.”

    A situation that can only be described as total chaos, with human surgeons, doctors, and nurses having to scream at each other in order to overcome the “tinny” sound coming from the robot as they were trying to control it, the attempted surgery ended up being nothing short of a complete failure. And in the end, retired music teacher and conductor, Stephen Pettitt, the guinea pig patient in this medical experiment, ultimately lost his life.

    Lead surgeon admits that he was ill-prepared to operate the surgical robot, having skipped multiple training sessions

    During a hearing that followed this catastrophe, lead surgeon Sukumaran Nair admitted that he lacked proper experience in controlling and using the surgical robot, stating that he was “running before he could walk.” In other words, it was truly a case of medical negligence and malpractice on steroids.

    As later revealed by the U.K.’s Daily Mail Online, Nair not only missed a critical training session in Paris that would have taught him how to properly use the surgical robot, but he also wasn’t present for another training sessions that later took place at his own hospital, claiming that he was busy with another surgery at the time.

    While supervisory experts were supposed to have been present for this surgery-gone-wrong, which should have prevented this type of nightmare from ever even occurring, they, too, were reportedly missing when things started to hit the fan.


  27. ulvfugl says:

    With Turkey’s graphic recording of Khashoggi’s final moments finally in the hands of US intelligence agencies, the Washington Post just confirmed what the New York Times first hinted at more than one month ago: That US intelligence agencies believe that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman ordered the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in what is just the latest example of the Trump administration and its intelligence agencies working at cross purposes (the first being, of course, the investigations that eventually coalesced into the Mueller probe).

    But instead of focusing on the recording of Khashoggi’s murder, the CIA is reportedly in possession of another piece of evidence that it believes incriminates the Crown Prince: A phone call made by Khalid bin Salman, MbS’s brother and the kingdom’s ambassador to the US, to Khashoggi, during which he promised the journalist that he wouldn’t be harmed if he visited the Saudi embassy in Istanbul to pick up the paper needed to marry his Turkish fiance.

    Even if MbS didn’t plan Khashoggi’s murder, Khalid’s call to Khashoggi, which the CIA believes was made at the behest of his powerful brother, suggests that the prince was aware of the plot.


  28. ulvfugl says:

    As bad as Bibi and Lieberman are/were Bennett makes them look like Quakers.

    So, the situation in Israel is similar to that in Russia for U.S. anti-Russian types. If you think Vladimir Putin is a dictator and a dangerous right-wing fanatic (which he isn’t) then you don’t understand what stands behind him.

    In other words, be careful what you wish for — regime change — because you just might get it … good and hard, to quote Mencken.

    In effect, weakening figures like them empowers the hyper-nationalists who are 1) eager to prove the other guy was a wimp and 2) untested in actual confrontation. So, they are unpredictable and likely to go off half-cocked.

    For all of his faults, Netanyahu is at least battle-tested and can be reasoned with to some extent.

    I think, however, Webb overstates the danger for the Palestinians here. Israel is in the precarious position. Too much of the world has turned against them and their handling of this situation.

    And that reputational loss is putting Netanyahu in the bind he’s currently in. He knows what will happen if Bennett is in charge of Israel’s defense forces. It will be the best recruitment drive for anti-Israeli sentiment the world over, but most especially here in the U.S.

    And that is something he can’t have.

    Broadly speaking, the height of Israel’s influence over U.S. politics has already occurred with the peak of the Baby Boomers’ political power. As the generational shift happens more Gen-X’ers and Millennials who have had their fill of subordinating U.S. foreign policy to the whims of Israel will gain influence over U.S. policy.

    This isn’t a judgment, it’s a sober observation.

    So if Bennett takes over the IDF and takes things to eleven versus the Palestinians in Gaza, then it will cost Donald Trump politically at home and the best ally Israel has had in two decades in the White House will be lost.

    They, along with the Saudis, are now having to truly deal with international criticism of their behavior and can no longer rely on a compliant (and paid for) western media to spin the narrative in their favor.

    And Trump & Kushner’s Project Netanyahu, as Alistair Crooke recently described it, has been nothing but a disaster for all involved, especially the people it was supposed to help — The Saudis and the Israelis.

    And all of Trump’s enemies, even the ones who are also pro-Israel, will turn up the heat on him over our relationship with these two countries if

    They both overplayed their hands thinking that Trump would back whatever play they made.

    It has played right into the hands of Iran, Russia and Hezbollah by continuing to think the insurgency against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could be successful. What Obama thought would be a quagmire for the Russians turned out to be one for the U.S./Israel/Saudi coalition.


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    Tenea is believed to have been a city settled by Trojan prisoners permitted to build their own city after the Trojan War. Past digs have found clues near the city, but the most recent excavation uncovered the “city’s urban fabric,” including floors, walls and door openings, the culture ministry said.

    Taking place from September to early October, the excavation found remnants of residences, pottery, coins and tombs, among other discoveries.

    “It is significant that the remnants of the city, the paved roads, the architectural structure, came to light,” lead archaeologist Elena Korka told CNN. “We’ve found evidence of life and death … and all this is just a small part of the history of the place.”


  36. ulvfugl says:

    Why 536 AD was the worst year to be alive: Scientists say a mysterious fog that blocked out the sun causing crop failures and widespread famine was the worst global disaster in history
    536AD was the start of 18 months of solid darkness caused by a mysterious fog
    Harvard professor believes this is the worst year in the entirety of human history
    Triggered a century of famine, crop failure, cold weather, disease and death


  37. ulvfugl says:

    An analysis of rainfall measured at weather stations across the globe between 1999 and 2014 found that the median time it took for half of a year’s precipitation to fall was just 12 days. A quarter of annual precipitation fell in just six days, and three-quarters fell in 27 days.


  38. ulvfugl says:

    ‘Mini brains’ grown in a dish have spontaneously produced human-like brain waves for the first time — and the electrical patterns look similar to those seen in premature babies.

    The advancement could help scientists to study early brain development. Research in this area has been slow, partly because it is difficult to obtain fetal-tissue samples for analysis and nearly impossible to examine a fetus in utero. Many researchers are excited about the promise of these ‘organoids’, which, when grown as 3D cultures, can develop some of the complex structures seen in brains. But the technology also raises questions about the ethics of creating miniature organs that could develop consciousness.


  39. ulvfugl says:

    “These new tracks are just one centimetre in length, which means the dinosaur that made them was an animal you could have easily held in your hand. They are the world’s smallest dinosaur tracks.”

    To estimate the size of the dinosaur that made the tracks, the team measured the footprint length and multiplied the value by 4.5 to get an approximate hip height.

    “The diminutive sizes of these new tracks are extraordinary; the tracks were made by tiny dinosaurs about the size of sparrows,” Dr Romilio said.


  40. ulvfugl says:

    Wild Edric, originally an historical figure of The Welsh Marches who made peace with William the Conqueror by 1070 haunts the Stiperstones (as well as around Church Stretton hills – here as a massive hound with fiery red eyes). As punishment for betraying the nation, he (still alive) is confined with his spectral army to the mines of the area (miners have heard tapping noises), to be released at times of National threat. Claimed sightings have happened around the times of the Napoleonic Wars, Boer War, Crimean War, and the First World War.


  41. ulvfugl says:

    At least one priest was among those killed in the Nov. 15 attack. Some unofficial estimates have said the death toll could reach as high as 100. Many of the people killed were refugees sheltering at the Church.


  42. ulvfugl says:

    An Israeli analyst leaked to the web the location coordinates of all Israeli air defense system PAC-3. Not later than one hour after the publication of our material about the Israeli air defense system, this article was translated into English and was published, while one, the English-language resource, and shortcuts on it appeared in many English-speaking Twitter account. Now, not long ago, we talked in our article “ISI have uncovered the area of Russian S-300 in Syria,” about the fact that the Centre for Integrated Geospatial Solutions ImageSatInt (ISI), affiliated with Pindostan and Israel, issued a circular saying where in Syria was S-300 located in the opinion of the Center. As reported, the location of the Russian air defense missile systems S-300 and S-400 was in the region of Masyaf. Now there is data on the location of Israeli PAC-3s. Unlike the S-300s in Syria, which was done by the Center, this was found and published by just one person. Israeli GIS analyst Dan Harel has published his unique, simple, effective method of definition of location Pindo batteries of PAC-3, which is available to “even children.” As explained by Harel in his article in the blog medium.com, when he accidentally adjusted the noise levels of the images obtained from the satellite Sentinel-1, all of a sudden “around the world” there was a bunch of colored Xs.


  43. ulvfugl says:

    According to Reuters, the vessel was founded “imploded” 907 meters deep in waters off the Valdes Peninsula in Argentine Patagonia. There were no survivors. The navy said a “positive identification” had been made by a remote-operated submersible from the American ship Ocean Infinity, which was hired for the latest search for the missing vessel.


  44. ulvfugl says:

    The study, titled “Lovers of the Death”? — Islamist Extremism in Mosques and Schools, says what worried them was not the presence of extremist literature, but that they found nothing but such writings in several libraries.


  45. ulvfugl says:

    Syria Sitrep – Army Wins Al-Safa Battle – More Troops Move Towards Idelb

    Today the Syrian army won the al-Safa battle. Al-Safa is a barren area around an old volcano southeast of Sweida where in July ISIS abducted dozens of hostages. The last of those hostages were freed in a commando raid ten days ago.

    With the hostages out of the way the Syrian army could finally use heavy weapons against ISIS which hid in the caves of the al-Safa field. Under heavy artillery cover the troops made good progress (video). Then came three days of unprecedented rain fall. ISIS fighters drowned in their caves and fighting positions. The commander of ISIS in the area, a Chechen, was killed. Those ISIS fighter who were left fled towards the al-Tanf area, which is under U.S. control, and into the desert in east Homs. The Syrian army is now in full control al-Safa.


  46. ulvfugl says:

    As California fire officials continue to battle the state’s deadliest blaze, a new crisis has emerged; tens of thousands of evacuees are now homeless and struggling to survive in freezing conditions with a storm expected to roll in on Wednesday. California officials estimated earlier in the week that 50,000 people had been evacuated from the fire-ravaged Paradise region, and over 1,000 are currently in sanctioned shelters.

    Making things worse, norovirus has broken out in at least three evacuation shelters, requiring isolation tents to try and contain its spread.

    As the Sacramento Bee notes – “the situation is growing worse with each passing day.”


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