vihu

~ ideal career: writer-musician-physician-scientist-entrepreneur

~ admires novelists who create believable worlds with science, history, and culture, and strong, complex characters

~ respects people who seek to balance the intransigence of morality and compassion for humanity

~ enjoys observing people and animals, in literature as well as real-life situations

~ tries to understand different perspectives, cultures, etc.

~ loves to learn, and appreciates things that make her think.

This erratic notepad is a perfectionist's exercise in spontaneity, and a collection of miscellaneous items of interest.

Perhaps the most troublesome and troubling word of all in thinking about plants is “consciousness.” If consciousness is defined as inward awareness of oneself experiencing reality—“the feeling of what happens,” in the words of the neuroscientist Antonio Damasio—then we can (probably) safely conclude that plants don’t possess it. But if we define the term simply as the state of being awake and aware of one’s environment—“online,” as the neuroscientists say—then plants may qualify as conscious beings, at least according to Mancuso and Baluška. “The bean knows exactly what is in the environment around it,” Mancuso said. “We don’t know how. But this is one of the features of consciousness: You know your position in the world. A stone does not.”

People who use social media are finding new ways to engage politically, but there’s a big difference between political participation and deliberation. People are less likely to express opinions and to be exposed to the other side, and that’s exposure we’d like to see in a democracy.

biocanvas:

Vascular smooth muscle cells

Our hearts pump some 50 million gallons of blood in our lifetime, and our arteries take a beating because of it. Arteries have the critical task of withstanding the high blood pressure that comes with each heart stroke. To do this, arteries are lined with thick vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) that contract and relax to control blood pressure and secrete proteins to cushion against each and every heartbeat. In this image, human embryonic stem cells have been transformed into VSMCs as shown by smooth muscle-specific markers in red and green. Creating VSMCs will be useful to study vascular abnormalities found in several diseases, including muscular dystrophy.

Image by Leslie Caron.

unknowneditors:

Reuben Wu | http://reubenwu.com/ | Tumblr

Reuben Wu is a British musician and member of the electronic band Ladytron. He is also an accomplished photographer. The pics of this set belong to “Ultima Esperanza” on his website.

Be sure to check out Unknown Editors on Tumblr & Facebook.

A commonplace book is a central resource or depository for ideas, quotes, anecdotes, observations and information you come across during your life and didactic pursuits. The purpose of the book is to record and organization these gems for later use in your life, in your business, in your writing, speaking or whatever it is that you do.

Some of the greatest men and women in history have kept these books. Marcus Aurelius kept one — which more or less became the Meditations. Petrarch kept one. Montaigne, who invented the essay, kept a handwritten compilation of sayings, maxims and quotations from literature and history that he felt were important. His earliest essays were little more than compilations of these thoughts. Thomas Jefferson kept one. Napoleon kept one. HL Mencken, who did so much for the English language, as his biographer put it, “methodically filled notebooks with incidents, recording straps of dialog and slang” and favorite bits from newspaper columns he liked. Bill Gates keeps one.

[…]

A commonplace book is a way to keep our learning priorities in order. It motivates us to look for and keep only the things we can use. … This is a project for a lifetime.

Fantastic piece by Ryan Holiday (who knows a thing or two about moving minds) on why and how to keep a “commonplace book.” Pair with Virginia Woolf on the creative benefits of keeping a diary and Joan Didion on keeping a notebook.

Of course, one could argue that a thoughtfully curated Tumblr is a “commonplace book” in its own right - after all, isn’t Tolstoy’s Calendar of Wisdom, the ultimate commonplace book, essentially a primitive Tumblr?

(via explore-blog)

(via explore-blog)

I find myself trying ever more radical interpretations of traditional dishes, in an effort to somehow express the void I feel so acutely. Today I tried this recipe:

Tuna Casserole

Ingredients: 1 large casserole dish

Place the casserole dish in a cold oven. Place a chair facing the oven and sit in it forever. Think about how hungry you are. When night falls, do not turn on the light.

While a void is expressed in this recipe, I am struck by its inapplicability to the bourgeois lifestyle. How can the eater recognize that the food denied him is a tuna casserole and not some other dish? I am becoming more and more frustrated.

A parodic masterpiece circa 1987: The Jean-Paul Sartre Cookbook, the best thing since these parodic recipes and household tips by the great writers.

Pair with the very real, very delightful Artists’ & Writers’ Cookbook.

(via explore-blog)

A faith that is centered upon getting into heaven is the most selfish form of religion. I do not understand how someone could honestly believe that getting into heaven is all there is to Christianity because Jesus emphasizes that faith is about how we live our lives at this very moment.