The Billboard: Isaac Asimov

Isaac Asimov

Articles: Religion & Mental Health: New Study Links Belief In ‘Punitive God’ To Emotional Problems

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Video: Richard Dawkins on Altruism and The Selfish Gene

Video: The Science of Persuasion

Travel: Cuba. 2010

From the vintage cars to the architecture of Old Habana, Cuba has it’s own unique style.  It is a wonderful place to capture a history frozen in time, experiencing the Caribbean lifestyle of the 1950s in the 2000s. You know you have felt the essence of Cuba when you walk through the alleys of the old town, have a Havana Club at a rundown bar, explore the tobacco fields of Pinar del Rio, enjoy a fresh Partagas cigar in a courtyard, eat a home cooked meal at a casa particular and get picked up to dance at the Tropicana.  Lovely people and an island with a wondrous history. Enjoy!

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The Billboard: Susan B. Anthony

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Articles: Study Demonstrates Health Benefits of Coming Out of The Closet

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Video: Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Daniel Dennett

A wonderful conversation between four great men who in this video I like to call the Four Musketeers.  Each approaches this constant idealogical battle in their own style, taking their distinct backgrounds to lay a unified argument in the fight against superstition, myth and religion.  Richard Dawkins provides a biological and evolutionary insight, while Christopher Hitchens offers his unique form of eloquent logic and reason.  Sam Harris enlightens us through the neuroscience perspective and finally Daniel Dennett applies philosophical reasoning.  All for one and one for all.  It is refreshing to listen to a discussion and have the chance to make up your own mind, unlike fundamental evangelists who tell you how to think and act. Enjoy!

Articles: A One-Way Ticket to Mars, Apply Now

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The Billboard: Activism

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Articles: 10 Comparisons Between Chimps and Humans

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The Billboard: Science (Wonder) Art

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Video: Radical Openness – Jason Silva

Articles: Why Menopause?

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Video: Michio Kaku – What Is Déjà Vu?

Photography: Night Photography. Kuwait – April. 2013

Yesterday I decided to go on an urban hike at night to play around with street lights. It definitely has a different feeling than day light photography. You get to capture the serenity of the night and you get to appreciate all spectrum of light from red , which has the longest wave length to blue, which has the shortest wave length.  I truly recommend it!

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Video: Want To Be Happier? Stay In The Moment – Matt Killingsworth

The concepts of happiness and love have been hijacked by Hallmark, appeasing the huge markets of people enthralled in movements such as The Secret and The Power of Now, which in my opinion are all forms of pseudoscience. On the other hand, they can be easily experienced if we truly try to understand the science behind them. Through experiments and research, scientists have found out that those emotions are universal between all humans, of which the function of the human brain very often wanders around.  Sam Harris calls it the voice within that is constantly speaking to you. If we learn more about this voice or this state of mind, we will have a better understanding on how to capture the particular moments that lead to happiness and love. I think neuroscience and meditation, as another alternative, are great tools to understand consciousness, and maybe a way to truly understand love and happiness. Enjoy!

Video: What Is Evolution?

Recently, I have encountered many people who don’t have a grasp on what evolution really entails, what it truly means.  In fact, it is not solely the lack of understanding and background on the matter, but the rather creative and farcical explanations on the subject that I have encountered.  One example was a week ago when  I was at Kuwait University with a filmmaker friend of mine working on a documentary.  We were approaching students asking them about “secularism,” basic questioning to find out what they knew about the term and whether they agreed or disagreed with it.   One guy brought in a very unique form of evolution into the secularism question, and already baffeled by this combination, it was what he said next and the reason why that took the cake.  “Men are better equipped to face reality as opposed to women”.  His backup to this claim is that men physically have wider eyes than women, and the reason for this is so they can better absorb shocks, not physical shocks per se, rather shocks to the capacity of seeing things that may affect us.  Now how creative is that?  I am still reeling from the answer, unsure whether to praise the genius behind it or to drop everything and start from scratch.  I thought to myself if only he had the chance to learn about evolution, maybe he wouldn’t come up with such a crazy idea.  Or if he truly was on to something, had he seeked a biological explanation to his ‘wide-eye theory,’ backing the suggestion on how it has evolved over time to show these differences in men and women, then maybe then I would give this student a second listen.  I stopped asking where secularism came into play in the answer, and the point taken was that the foundations of our thoughts and ideas are laid out differently, and getting a point across or understanding a topic may require deconstructions of thought and applicability of newer ideas and so on.   Anyways, a new take on Evolution out of Kuwait, and with that it reminded me of this video, for all the people who are confused or overwhelmed by it. Enjoy!

Video: Renan Ozturk: Cinematographer + Director // Reel 2013

Amazing video on the thrill of adventure and the beauty of nature. Sometimes I think what makes life worth living is getting out there in nature, getting out of our comfort zone, breaking the routine and letting go. If no one ever experienced that then they are missing out big time. I recommend watching this video on a big screen. Enjoy!

Articles: Front Row at the Dawn of Time

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