Spring is in the air, Happy Easter or passover or spring equinox everyone. I love this time of year. In all cases it represents new life. It also brings an abundance of uplifting posts. Here are the best I could find.
Regarding the Mind-
At Frontal Cortex, Jonah reports of new research working out the mechanics of reading. The capacity our brain carries for developing new ablilities truthfully leaves me thunderstruck.
At Cognitive Daily, Dave Munger has some fun video displays examining how motion shapes our perception, even with nothing more than points of light.
For the election season, with its omnipresent whisper campaigns, The New York Times has an excellent article of the psychology of rumors.
Regarding the Soul-
At First Things, Edward T. Oaks ponders what an atheist does when they have done something truly wrong to appease their conscience in Atheists and Atonement. I found it an excellent analysis of why we needed a savior.
I was in High School during the era of Mikhail Gorbochev, perestroika, glasnost, and the unraveling of the USSR. I remember being in absolute awe of a leader that bloodlessly and willingly lay down his power for what he believed to be in the best interest of his people. I could not fathom what could have lead him to take the direction he did. Recently published, his journal reveals the great secret of his character, faith in the Lord, Jesus Christ.
Kathryn Lenard Soper, at Blog Segullah, has a magnificent and powerful essay about Childbirth, and the epiphany it gave her, into understanding the true nature of the atonement of Jesus Christ.
Regarding the Body-
Neurophilosophy has a very interesting story regarding 19th century innovation a papier-mache model of the human brain as part of a whole hands on library.
NPR reports a new phenomenon, families of children with incurable disease are taking the to China for stem cell injections and reportedly it is working. The problem is we can’t understand why it even should work, raising the suspicion of placebo effect.
At Of Two Minds, a report on Gulf War syndrome and the theory it may be caused by “nerve gas” or anticholinesterase inhibitors, a type of chemical warfare. It seems those with the symptoms are less tolerant of natural or medicinal exposures that cause the same effects in our nerves.
Or all the Above-
At SharpBrains, Gregory Kellet has a wonderfully instructive post on relaxing, how and why it is good for your brain. Psychology, neurology, spirituality all wrapped up in one masterful package.
In an era were paternalism has become a dirty word, survival has become easier, and which seeks to reevaluate the place of gender in society, here is a powerful and useful piece on the Lost Art of Manliness.
For we Americans, living in relative security in a country where we are waging war halfway around the world, 9/11 notwithstanding, I found Shaharazad has a timely, poignant, and beautifully written post on the Scars of War In Iran.
And just because I liked it-
In an Easter special, I present Peeps, everyones favorite sugar coated marshmallow blast of insufferable sweetness, acting out scenes from the Book of Mormon. Someone had entirely too much time on their hands.
Mind Hacks has a post about those crazy scientists who work to advance their fame and reputation in an end run around ethical blockades through self sacrifice, in the provocatively titled Better Living Through Reckless Self-experimentation.
That’s it for this week, enjoy.