greatest thinkers

In honor of black history month which starts Wednesday, I’d like to submit this fine black man named Ernest Everett Just. <3 He was a biologist and educator who pioneered multiple areas of the physiology of the development of living cells. This included fertilization, experimental parthenogenesis, hydration, cell division, dehydration in living cells, and the effects of radiation on cells. During his time, a fellow black scientist named Charles Drew called him “a biologist of unusual skill and the greatest of our original thinkers in the field.” He also looks a little like Rami Malek, so that doesn’t hurt him AT ALL.

  • someone: david bowie was an intellectual genius. truly one of the greatest thinkers of our time.
  • david bowie: HAHA holy FUCKING SHIT thats a BIG DICK this is COMEDIC GENIUS

Hidden Portraits: Marie Curie

Marie Curie was a Polish and naturalized-French scientist and two-time Nobel Laureate for her pioneering study of radioactivity.

She’s featured in the Art with Watson series, Hidden Portraits. 15 artists teamed up with Watson to discover and illuminate the unknown essence of seven of history’s greatest thinkers using data. 

What Watson thinks:
After analyzing articles about Curie from the past and present, along with her autobiography and private writings, Watson discovered that she experienced more joy when she talked about her family compared to science, despite being perceived as a cold, albeit brilliant, scientist.

About the artwork:
Truth Shines was inspired by the dichotomy between the public persona and the personal, lesser-known dimension of Curie, as revealed by Watson: the cold scientist vs. the loving woman. The blue test represents the words the public used to describe her, and the glowing red text is taken from actual words used in private writings between Curie and her family.

Explore Curie’s Hidden Portrait->

anonymous asked:

63, 62, and 45 with whoever you'd prefer!

i thought 45 would go well with burrens, so here you go!! enjoy!

Word Count: 513

Warnings: bullying

“He doesn’t say anything original, you know? He must be really dumb,” Alex said, glaring over at his enemy, Aaron Burr, who was sitting alone in the cafeteria.

“Maybe he’s shy,” John shrugged, taking a bite of his sandwich.

“No, I think he’s just a kiss-ass,” Hercules laughed. “He wants to get on everyone’s good side so he never says what he’s actually thinking.”

“And that’s dumb!” Alex laughed.

Lafayette shrugged. “Maybe it is smart to shut up. You make a lot of enemies, Alexander.”

“All the greatest thinkers have enemies, Gil,” Alex said. “Because they’re not afraid to stand up for what they believe in.”

As his friends continued to bash Aaron, John glanced back at him, still sitting alone, reading a book. John noticed tears in his eyes.

“Guys, I think he can hear you,” John said, turning back to his table.

“So what? He should learn to speak up!” Alex said loudly. Laf and Herc laughed along, and John gave an awkward chuckle, still glancing over his shoulder at Aaron.

Last period, John stayed behind after class to talk to his History teacher about changing his essay topic. Once he left class, the halls were empty. As he walked to his locker, he passed by the boys’ bathroom and heard crying coming from inside.

After a moment of deliberation, John opened the door slowly. “Hello?” he called in.

He heard sniffing as whoever was crying tried to stifle his tears. John walked in and found Aaron sitting on the ground knees curled to his chest, wiping vigorously at his eyes.

“Go away, Laurens,” Aaron said, burying his face in his arms.

John ran over and sat down next to him. “Why are you crying?”

Aaron looked up at him in disbelief. “Are you really asking me that?”

Guilt welled up in him. “I’m so sorry for everything…” he said softly, bringing his own knees up to his chest.

“Well… you didn’t say anything mean.”

“No, but I didn’t stop my friends, either. That’s kind of worse,” John said regretfully. “I’m so sorry.”

“It’s okay. I’m used to it… used to people not liking me.”

“Maybe if you spoke up more…?” John suggested.

“Speaking my opinion has never been… encouraged… at home,” Aaron said carefully, and John’s heart broke for the boy. He wrapped an arm around him and let Aaron lean his head against his shoulder, feeling the tears soak his shirt.

Everyone keeps telling me you’re the bad guy,” John said. “But… I don’t believe it.”

Aaron looked up at the freckled boy’s face and felt his heart begin to pound.

“What are you doing right now?” John asked.

“I was going to go home…” Aaron said softly.

“How about we go out for some ice cream?” John asked with a smile that made Aaron’s breath hitch. “I’d like to get to know you better.” John stood up and offered his hand.

“I’d like that too,” Aaron said, and allowed John to pull him to his feet. Neither let go of the other’s hand as they left the school.


The Picnic Scene - IT’S NO PICNIC!

The picnic scene in AOTC inspires such backlash and huge amount of criticism - some say the scene doesn’t even feel like SW and its only aim is to show Harlequin-type of romance to appeal to the female audience, others argue that it basically shows Anakin having facist tendencies and it’s the moment Padmé should have run away from him. It’s such a pity because there are so many things going on in that scene - the symbolism, the political and social commentary, all the things it reveals about Anakin’s personality and motivation,… - and it has many different levels.

It’s funny how so many people automatically deduce from the dictatorship conversation that Anakin is twisted and that the relationship between him and Padmé would never work. Everyone is ready to jump on the “inherently evil and twisted” bandwagon just because a 19-year-old man freely voices his personal opinion in a free society which respects the freedom of expression and opinion. They condemn him without giving him the benefit of doubt. It’s a bias stemming from the fact that THEY KNOW HE WILL BECOME DARTH VADER, THE EPITOME OF EVIL, ergo him supporting dictatorship makes him already guilty of much worse crimes. As if “dictatorship” was the most taboo word in the world. Just uttering it makes him guilty in almost everyone’s eyes. It’s much worse than if he said the F-word (actually, if he did it most people would think him cool). However, what people fail to see is that an opinion and actually acting on it are two completely different things. It feels ironic that the same people who accuse Anakin of being written as a moody teenager vilify him for having a mature and relevant conversation about such sophisticated topic as the political organization of society.

Anakin in AOTC is portrayed with naivité that is typical for his age but also cynism of a man who has seen too much too soon, and this combination makes him much more mature than a typical teenager. However, most of all, Anakin is an idealist who he sees the system isn’t working and Padmé sees it, as well. However, when he offers dictatorship as a way of reforming the system, Padmé cannot offer other solution because she doesn’t have one, even though her own belief tells her dictatorship is wrong, and she can only show incredulity. In that moment, Anakin doesn’t defend dictatorship because he wants to rule the Galaxy himself (that only happens after he joins Sidious), but because he sees it as an alternative to a system that has been failing and HE ACTUALLY SAW PEOPLE DIE BECAUSE OF IT, SAW THEIR SUFFERING AS HE WAS HELPLESS TO SAVE THEM. HE BLED FOR THAT SYSTEM, HE FOUGHT EACH DAY WHILE RISKING HIS LIFE TO PROTECT THAT SYSTEM OUT OF LOYALTY, HONOUR AND HIS VOWS BUT IT KEPT DISAPPOINTING HIM OVER AND OVER AGAIN. He had left his mother in slavery for what she’d hoped to be his freedom, but he ended up realizing that the politicians he serves are as corrupted and evil as the criminals on Tatooine. In ROTS it’s strongly implied how he has stopped believing in what he’s fighting for because that very thing has become corrupted. One of the reasons why he wants to go with Obi-wan to Utapau is because with him he feels he is doing the right thing - with him he feels there are still things worth fighting for in the Galaxy.

Another level is that people forget that the real point of that scene isn’t about Anakin showing to be in favour of dictatorship nor it’s about politics - it’s about an argument and a debate, about philosophy, the importance of discussion and a point of view, because there is no such thing as an absolute truth or a perfect system. George Lucas is famous for working with motifs and ideologies in his Saga and that fact is even more pronounced in the Prequels as the conversation between Padmé and Anakin is an allusion to the Greek history and philosophy which gave birth to the ideas of political systems. Aristotle himself, who lived in the democratic Athens and is considered to be one of the greatest thinkers and philosophers of all time, was a passionate advocate of autocracy, which he considered to be the best type of political system, and the rule of a benevolent dictator while he deemed democracy as the worst of all the political systems. The flaw is not in any of the systems, it’s in the people - be it communism, autocracy or democracy (or dynamite), originally they were all noble ideas to help people. However, each time the philosophers and their founders assumed that the people who would hold the power would be righteous and incorruptable and that was their common mistake because people are weak and greedy and power corrupts.

Finally, about Padmé’s reaction to Anakin’s opinions - it’s obvious it shocks her but it also intrigues her because no man would ever dare to openly and frankly voice his political beliefs which are considered by the general society as politically incorrect. He believes in the same things as she does - the prosperity of people - but not neccessarily in the same methods with which he would achieve it. And why? Because he was shaped differently than Padmé who always had the freedom to shape her own destiny and the possibilities and means to freely fight for her people and her beliefs, but for the most parts she was sheltered and protected from the terrible atrocities of war and social injustice. On the other hand, Anakin, even after being freed from slavery, was never sheltered and as Obi-Wan’s padawan was always in the middle of battles and fights; he could never decide for himself and had to follow the orders of the Council and the Senate, left again to watch helplessly all the people he couldn’t save .

S9 in its Brockton Bay lineup can be, power wise cleanly divided into two groups:

basically inherently villainous. Crawler’s only this strong because he committed to being inhuman in body and mind, Shatterbird might assemble electronics or some shit but it’s a huge stretch and is basically a walking murder-catastrophe, Cherish is an outright brainwasher of the worst kind

and inherently heroic to the point where not being on the good team is a huge loss for the world. Siberian is outright stronger than Alexandria just without the flight or thinker powers, Burnscar is basically the best fireman possible, and both are overshadowed by of course the greatest medical thinker in the world and the greatest ecology tinker.

and of course then there’s Jack, whose powers are half pure projected murder  and half the most important thing the multiverse needs

Alien contact. It could happen at any time, but are we ready?

It seems as though a week doesn’t go by these days without us discovering some new planet, star or alien megastructure ;) Frankly, it feels like it’s only a matter of time before spaceships start falling from the skies and we finally get our invitation to the intergalactic party. It would appear that the world’s powers also seem to think so and it might surprise you to learn that there are actual, official protocols in place, should we ever make “first contact”. These official procedures include everything from first detection to “How to Say Hello In Alien” but, even then, there are some who think that this isn’t enough. The discovery that we are not alone in the universe would probably shake humanity to its very core. The greatest thinkers of the age, from scientists to philosophers to theologians, have all tried to predict what this would mean for the human race, with varying degrees of doom, gloom or tentative optimism. And that’s just how humans will react, who knows how the little green men will react when they find a planet full of weird, hairless apes, desperately firing out radio signals in the hope of a reply

Back in the 1950s, the US military created a document entitled “Seven Steps to Contact,” outlining a recommended procedure for contact with intelligent alien life forms. The seven steps cover the scenario in which we discover aliens on their own planet, as opposed to them dropping out of our earthly skies.

The first step we would take would be to commence remote surveillance, just to check that they aren’t super-into stuff like “rampant nuclear warfare”. The next few steps would be to make flybys and near approaches, occasionally touching down in isolated spots to get the lay of the land. We would take samples of the local wildlife for analysis and perhaps even taking a closer look at the intelligent beings too. After this, we would begin to make our presence known by approaching in ships and demonstrating as effectively as possible that we mean to harm, whilst at the same time staying out of harm’s way. Finally, if they haven’t tried to shoot us down after all of that faffing around in their atmosphere, we’d reach out to make some kind of diplomatic contact.

It might not have escaped your notice that this all sounds remarkably like the reports of alien encounters here on Earth. The document, however, was actually written before the first reported abduction. Have aliens drawn up a document that is spookily similar to ours


We’ve received so many questions the past week about Islamic book recommendations so I figured it’d be easier to do a post for all of you who are interested! Below is a short breakdown of some good reads that would be good to get in your library this Ramadan! They’re all pretty much ‘entry level’ books; none of them deal with complex Islamic topics, and most of them are very easy to read! Here we go:

Qur’an Translation:

The Qur’an by M.A.S Abdel Haleem: Not only was he fantastic as my MA tutor (biased, much?), but Abdel Haleem’s translation is modern and contextualised and stays true to the arabic of the original Qur’an. One of the best translations out there. The introduction is really good, too. 

Qur’an Studies: 

Understanding the Qur’an: Themes and Style by M.A.S Abdel Haleem: Okay, if you’re looking for a book that’ll help you grasp Qur’anic style, or you’ve never read the Qur’an before, read this! This book is an excellent introduction into the style and themes of the Qur’an. If i’m honest, I wouldn’t recommend someone from another faith (or no faith - gotta be all PC here don’t we!), to just pick up an english translation of the Qur’an and begin their search into Islam that way. I would most definitely recommend they read this book first to understand the way the Qur’an is written, some of the prominent topics that occur throughout, and how it tackles these themes. 

General Islamic Books:

Muhammad by Martin Lings: Ranked as one of the best biographies written on the prophet, this book is a comprehensive yet easy to read start into learning about the Prophet Muhammad’s life and journey. I’m going to re-read it this Ramadan. It’s one of my favourites. Martin Lings is pretty epic too.

The Alchemy of Happiness by Ghazali: A nice intro to get you all into Ghazali, one of the greatest Islamic thinkers of all time. Easy to read, and super short too! 

The Vision of Islam by William Chittick & Sachiko Murata: A perfect introduction to Islam written by husband-wife power duo. It’s a little long (make it your target to finish it this Ramadan, maybe?) but includes all the core teachings of Islam and their purposes in the faith. Structured around the three levels of faith, Islam, Iman & Ihsan, it starts by discussing the outer level of faith, namely the rituals and practices, and then gradually delves into the inner dimensions of Islam, worship and gnosis. 

Islam and the Destiny of Man by Gai Eaton: Another fantastic introductory book, leaning more towards an intellectual approach to Islam. Whilst it’s focused on giving people who are not Muslim an understanding of the faith, it’s still a very valued source for us Muslims too. If you think it’s too long, check out Reflections by Gai Eaton instead. 

The Tao of Islam by Sachiko Murata: I was a bit hesitant to put this in here, as a) I haven’t finished it and b) it’s a little ‘deep’ for some readers. Nevertheless, it’s a good book to have in your library to dip in and out of. Murata has some very unique, thought-provoking and interesting discussions in here ranging from the creation of man, nature of Satan, basis of marriage etc. The chapter on The Womb is really insightful. 

What is Sufism? by Martin Lings: Jus gonna throw this one in here! Check it out. What a nice book to end on :) 

Let me know how you all get on! Hope your Ramadan is going well. 

- A x 

Have you read any of the above? What did you think?

Today marks the 144th anniversary of the start of the Paris Commune. The great worker-lead 72 day insurrection transformed Parisian society into an autonomous commune according to the principles of cooperation and association. Although its existence was short, ultimately succumbing to the brutal suppression at the hands of the French government after a week-long battle in the streets of Paris, the effects of the Paris Commune rippled across the globe. The Commune profoundly influenced some of the greatest social and political thinkers of the 19th century, particularly Marx, Kropotkin and William Morris, and remains a pivotal influence for contemporary struggles.


Hidden Portraits: Josephine Baker

Josephine Baker was an American-born entertainer, civil rights activist, and French Resistance operative who reached the pinnacle of fame headlining the lavish and risqué revues of the 1920s’ Paris stage.

She’s featured in the Art with Watson series, Hidden Portraits. 15 artists teamed up with Watson to discover and illuminate the unknown essence of seven of history’s greatest thinkers using data.

What Watson thinks:
Watson’s analysis suggests Baker’s personality in her writings differs from the extroverted self she presented to the world. In Baker’s writings, Watson discovered contradictions to her flamboyant persona. She ranked 9.6% in extroversion and 7.2% in hedonism and excitement-seeking traits, while ranking a much higher 97.5% in cautiousness—indicating that this seemingly uninhibited chanteuse was in fact an introvert.

About the artwork:
In exploring the idea of glamour as a form of disguise, the artists chose to reference the key element of Baker’s iconic banana skirt—the banana. Strong on the outside, fragile on the inside. With Watson, the artists peeled away the exterior of “the world’s most sensational woman” and uncovered something the public never knew.

Explore Baker’s Hidden Portrait →


Charts show how history’s most brilliant people scheduled their days

Based on research from Mason Currey’s Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, Podio created beautiful charts that show how some of modern society’s greatest thinkers, writers, artists and philosophers spent their days. It begins with the earliest risers and reveals how much time each of them spent sleeping, working, socializing, relaxing, exercising and at their day jobs or doing administrative stuff like managing their holdings or paying taxes.

Read more | Follow micdotcom 

Armin’s parents and the Reiss family (Chapter 83 Predictions/Theories)

You know, when I first read chapter 82 I really, really didn’t want Armin to be dead.  I was in denial for a good week, then I slowly started to accept that he’s probably gone.  But then, after thinking about it a bit more, and reading some other people’s theories here and there, it started to seem more and more likely that Armin could possibly come back and have an even greater role to play in the story.   And well, seeing as the new chapter is coming out soon, I just wanted to share my crackpot theories with you guys.  ಠ◡ಠっ Here you go.

1. Armin’s relation to Historia (i.e. Armin is a Reiss who, if titanized, can absorb titan memories)

So, I was thinking about the scene back when Historia’s father was trying to get her to take the titan serum and was talking all about how the Reiss family are the only family that can use the titan power to its full potential, specifically when it comes to absorbing the memories of other shifters (that they’ve eaten).  Or harnessing the power of the Coordinate.

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To all the men who need to hear this.....

Hey @guys-positivity @boy-positive @boypositiveplace I’d appreciate it greatly if you reblogged this.


Hello to all of my cis, trans, NB, Pan, and ace brothers. Because guess what? The literal second you said to yourself, by birth or by choice, “I am a man” you became one. That’s it. No big test. No rite or protocol. You said it, so it is so. You are a man. 

And because you are a man, you have brothers. Millions of us around the world and we want nothing more than the absolute best for you. We will support you in your dreams, encourage you to do what you need to do to follow them, and help you stand up when you fall down. 

In you now, in your blood and bones, is the stuff of greatness. The discipline and attention to detail of some of history’s greatest thinkers and scientists exists within you now. The capacity for romance and love of the men who wrote love poems that still send people swooning to this day, TO THIS VERY DAY, exists within you. The aggressive spirit of the Samurai and the Spartans exists within you. Whatever you want to be, all of the stuff that you need to be that man exists within you. 

Realize it. Cultivate it. 

I love you all. I believe in you all. I support you all. 

And if you ever need a little help, see the people I mentioned at the top of the post. And see me. I will be here to help always. I promise. 

Noam Chomsky is one of the most incredible human beings in the world.  He used a platform gained through academia to promote democracy and human rights and to speak out against corporate power and global American tyranny and has continued to be a voice of reason in class struggle and foreign policy to almost the age of 90 and shows no signs of stopping, not to mention his amazing academic achievements and status as one of the greatest thinkers in recent history.  He deserves to be a household name and his ideas deserve to be heard and understood throughout this country.

rated e for eternity infinity
word count: 2,039
ship: namjin
for milkt-ea and kookie-time 
prompt: larger than fiction 

Namjoon has always been an avid reader. When he was little, his mother used to run her finger beneath the lines of words as she read to him, tracing them to life, and later, when he was a bit older, he would too–feel the words come to life beneath his finger as he spins them about his lips.

Until one day, he read and read, spun and spun, traced and traced till the words danced right off the page, danced into the air in front of him, stepping to the music of his voice. That night, he sat on the floor of his room with the world’s greatest thinkers and philosophers and played chess.

Namjoon won.

(Read More)

50 fascinating facts you should know about Scotland, apparently.

1. The official animal of Scotland is the Unicorn.

2. The shortest scheduled flight in the world is one-and-a-half miles long from Westray to Papa Westray in the Orkney Islands of Scotland. The journey takes 1 minute 14 seconds to complete.

3. Scotland has approximately 790 islands, 130 of which are inhabited.

4. The Neolithic settlement of Skara Brae (pictured below), on the island of Orkney, is the oldest building in Britain, dating from 3100 BC.

5. The Hamilton Mausoleum in South Lanarkshire has the longest echo of any man-made structure in the world; a whole 15 seconds.
(Edit - longest echo is now at 112 seconds taken in a man-made structure has been set in an underground fuel depot constructed in Scotland before World War Two.)

6. Scotland has more than 600 square miles of freshwater lakes, including the famous Loch Ness.

7. The capital of Scotland, Edinburgh, is only its second largest city, after Glasgow.

8. Edinburgh was the first city in the world which had its own fire brigade.

9. Like Rome, Edinburgh was built on seven hills and the capital has more listed buildings than anywhere in the world.

10. Scotland had its own monarch until 1603. After Elizabeth I died,James VI of Scotland also became James I of England, ruling both countries.

11. St Andrews Links is considered the “home of golf”; the sport has been played there since the 15th century.

12. Queen Victoria is reputed to have smoked cigarettes during her visits to the Highlands of Scotland to keep away midges.

13.Edinburgh was home to Skye terrier Grey Friar’s Bobby, who captured the hearts of the nation by sitting on the grave of his dead owner for 14 years.

14.Scotland is currently the second largest country in the UK, after England.

15. The highest point in Scotland is Ben Nevis, at 4,406ft (1343m)

More facts after the cut.

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Day 9 - part II

After seeing Les Invalides I made a stop at the Panthéon. Going in I did not know much about the building and was presently surprised by what I found. In the late 1700’s the Panthéon was built to be a grand church for the people of Paris to enjoy. But its time as a religious space did not last long. After the French Revolution it was converted into a burial site, where all the great men and women of Paris would be buried. While some French leaders have tried to bring the building back to roots, today it remains a national monument and the final resting place of some of the greatest French thinkers. For example, while there I visited the famous author Victor Hugo, who wrote Les Miserable, as well as Marie Curie, who is famous for her work with radiation.

The building itself is reminiscent of the Roman Pantheon. Inside the walls are lined with tall columns and beautiful floor to ceiling paintings. The most interesting aspect of the Panthéon is the color choices. Together the clean white marble and the cooler colors of the paintings have a sort of calming effect. While there I felt sort of at peace, tranquil in a way. I believe this somber effect was most likely intentional. Given the fact that so many world-renowned people are buried there perhaps the architect wanted to make a space free for reflection. Whatever the reason may be, the Panthéon is a great place to visit and relax, especially on a hot afternoon.

(The Panthéon)

(inside the building)