here’s something interesting i was thinking about all day !!! i was in biology class today and the topic of “vitalism” was brought up. for anyone who doesn’t know, vitalism is the belief that the chemicals of a living organism have a certain energy/lifeforce that separates them from the chemicals of a non-living organism.
our teacher argued that vitalism is false and that a lot of scientists have already proven it false, because artificially synthesized biological substances produced using different methods than the body were shown to be identical to the substance produced in the body. so therefore there isn’t any special energy separating living molecules from non-living molecules, right?
however, as a witch and spirit worker, i’ve experienced living and non-living energy first hand, and i can say with about 95% certainty there’s a difference. and i’m sure other witches can say the same ! so does that mean that vitalism is actually real? this got me thinking about the knowledge of witches and the knowledge of scientists who are non-practitioners. do you guys think it’s possible that those who practice witchcraft may possibly know more than some of the top scientists in our world? is it possible that we might even know certain things to be true that scientists have failed to realize/or debunked just because of the way the majority of our world views magic?
i’d love to hear your thoughts on this !!! i think it’s really interesting, cause i feel like lack of belief in certain things can really limit our potential for new knowledge ^^ i’m not saying my views are right btw !! i’m just really curious what your views on vitalism are, from a witch’s (and possibly scientist’s) pov :>
Oh boy! So, this all takes place around 2.3 billion years ago. Up until then, life had been pretty much chilling for a billion or so years. Pretty much everything was a single-celled organism back then. Also, the planet was a whole lot different. There was no ozone layer, so UV radiation was constantly reaching the surface. That kills stuff, by the way, in high concentrations. Methane gas was also being spewed into the air by various volcanic eruptions. So, not a very nice place. Most importantly, oxygen wasn’t much of a thing. The little there was existed in the ocean and bonded with the iron molecules that were floating around to make rust.
The organisms that were alive got along just fine without oxygen, for the time being. These are called anaerobic organisms, and some of them still exist today. A lot are in your stomach right now. Anyways, along comes this little thing called a cyanobacteria. It’s unclear how they evolved, but the point is, they can do this neat trick we like to call photosynthesis. As you probably know, a byproduct of photosynthesis is oxygen.
Cyanobacteria were incredibly successful - they could make up to 16 times as much energy as anything else. So, they started multiplying. Pretty soon, there was a bunch of extra oxygen floating around, and not enough iron to bond with it. Then things started dying. See, to a lot of anaerobic organisms, oxygen is incredibly deadly. And now there were billions of cyanobacteria constantly spewing it out.
Long story short, almost everything besides cyanobacteria died. The survivors either adapted to be able to live with oxygen, or went and lived in places without it, like underground or in sulfur vents (those guys are still around today!). The cyanobacteria were literally so successful that they changed the chemical makeup of the atmosphere. This also led to a decrease in greenhouse gases and started the longest ice age the world has ever seen. Go cyanobacteria!
So I recently read a post about what @magic-for-the-masses (aka Richtor) terms energy tethers in witchcraft (this post) and I mentioned to them that to me, the way energy tethers work sounds a lot like how energy works in the world of science. So this is my elaboration on that.
Energy as a Source of Power:
Richtor states that an energy tether acts like a source of energy that powers a battery (an object or person) and that the power is an unlimited source and can constantly power the “battery” with some maintenance and if you choose to keep the link connected.
But what is this energy really? At least, if you’re going to analyze it from a scientific perspective. I know, I know, science and magic don’t mix…or do they?
Potential Energy vs Kinetic Energy:
Now if you’ve had high school science, you’ve probably had to learn all about potential and kinetic energy, how the sun powers life on the earth, how chemical reactions happen, etc., etc. And I’m guessing if it’s been a few years and you’re not into science, you’ve probably forgotten all about it.
Here’s a brief refresher: Potential energy is all of the possible energy that a body (living or inanimate) has relative to its position to other bodies. Now usually we think of this as gravitational energies, but there are other energies too. I’ll get to that in a minute. Kinetic energy is the energy a body has when it’s in motion.
The most basic example of this is a ball on top of a hill. That ball has tons of potential energy sitting on that hill. Now if you kick that ball and it rolls down the hill, it loses all of its potential energy because it’s converted into kinetic energy. Until it stops at the bottom of the hill and has potential energy again.
Now imagine a waterfall. I swear this all relates, so just humor me. Anyway, we’re imagining a waterfall. At the top of a waterfall is usually a river or other body of flowing water of some kind. That is the water’s potential energy. The waterfall itself, is the water’s kinetic energy.
Molecular Bonds & Potential Energy:
I swear this isn’t just a science lesson.
Still thinking about that waterfall, what is water made of? Well, liquid water of course, duh. But what is water actually? What is everything? Molecules. A bunch of tiny bits of elements moving about through space. But how do they move? And how are they stuck together? ENERGY. See, I told you it would relate.
Now let’s really narrow our focus. Without getting too much into how molecular biology/chemistry/physics works, I’m just gonna talk about a single water molecule. Since we like waterfalls so much. If you don’t remember what a water molecule looks like, just imagine a large sphere stuck to two smaller spheres in a roughly triangular shape.
Energy is what’s keeping these three atoms stuck together to form a molecule. The energy keeping the atoms together are commonly called bonds. But they’re not just stuck together, it’s more like a tug-o-war. With an energetic rope…or tether. See where I’m going with this?
But, these atoms can also break apart, can’t they? You see, the energy keeping the atoms together is their potential energy. If they were to break apart, energy would be released, their kinetic energy.
Energy is Everywhere:
If you’re reading this, I’m guessing that you’re using the energy of your brain and associated organs to view and comprehend this post. And your hand to scroll through tumblr, right? How are you doing that? ENERGY. (Is it annoying yet?)
So yes, you are composed of energy. Everything is. Even your coffee/tea cup and your pet rock (favorite quartz crystal). Remember, the four stages of matter? No? Well remember your favorite thing in the world? Waterfalls? Which are made of water? Well guess what? Water can be a solid, liquid, or gas! I know, it’s impressive. Water can’t be a plasma though, in case you forgot that stage of matter as well.
ANYWAY, each stage of water has energy stored in it. I bet you can guess which type of energy that is. That’s right, potential energy. And how does water change from one stage to another? Yep, kinetic energy.
What Does This Have to do With Magic?!
I’m glad you asked.
Basically, magic is all about the exchange of potential and kinetic energies. I know you’re sick of those words by now but at least you know what I’m talking about.
When you perform a spell, you are taking potential energy (or rather, your potential to generate a spell) and converting it into kinetic energy. Or spell casting.
Now technically speaking there’s no such thing as limitless energy. But I really don’t think you’re gonna stop your favorite waterfall by drawing some energy from it.
However, unless I’m very much mistaken, this is technically limitless potential energy.
Energy Tethers & Potential Energy:
So this is where we finally relate science to energy tethers. Yay~!
Remember, an energy tether is composed of two things: A source and a battery.
Now, I don’t think you’re going to notice much of a change if you were to draw energy from a single atom or molecule. You’re composed of trillions (probably more) of atoms and molecules. Do you notice if a single speck of dust lands on your skin? Probably not.
So you’ve got to think bigger.
If say, you were to create a tether from the sun, or moon, or a power plant, or your favorite waterfall, to say, yourself, you would be taking potential energy from that source and storing it (like a battery) in yourself. Until you used it, in which case you would convert that energy into kinetic energy.
But unlike regular spell casting where you usually end up tired from using energy (magical energy in this case), you are constantly having new potential energy drawn into you via the tether you created with whatever source you’ve tethered yourself to.
And that’s all I have to say about that.
(Disclaimer: I do not consider myself an expert of magic or science. My background is in biology so I apologize to any chemists and physicists reading this if I butchered anything.)
vitamin c promotes collagen production and inhibits tyrosinase, the enzyme that causes over-production of melanin (what causes hyperpigmentation and scarring from acne). vitamin e is anti-inflammatory and decreases skin damage by healing infection. acid exfoliants like nut or fruit derived AHA, willow bark derived BHA, or kojic acid promote healthy cell turnover & go deep into the pores to exfoliate, brighten, and resurface the skin.
aloe vera helps remove dead or damaged skin cells while promoting the regeneration of new cells and hydrating the skin the skin. aloe vera has natural acids which helps exfoliate, lighten, moisturize, and heal skin. oils, especially green tea seed oil, can reduce post-acne inflammation & provide essential nutrients to heal the skin. aztec healing clay is a natural bentonite clay that physically cleans pores and deeply exfoliates without being harsh to skin. exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells which is integral if you have scars but be mindful to not do it too much, as it can irritate the skin & result in even more inflammation!
sunscreen is the most important thing to use, whether or not you have scars or hyperpigmentation, because it protects the skin barrier. if you have deep scarring i would recommend seeing a dermatologist because preventing / minimizing hyperpigmentation and acne scars largely depends on your complexion, skin type, and internal health. it’s worth noting that scarring & hyperpigmentation aren’t necessarily the same, and can be treated differently. but i hope these general tips help :-)
K SON I’M GOING TO TAKE A MINUTE TO TALK ABOUT MINIATURIZATION
AKA My Lifelong Fantasy And No This Isn’t A Fetish Thing I Just Think It’d Be Fucking Amazing
so there are two kinds of people, right
there are the ones who are like “what’s the big deal” or even “ugh, no way”
(y’all are all right)
and then there’s other folks, such as me
I fucking love stories about miniaturization
I was the kid who’d fantasize about living alongside a tiny stream of water. imagine what it’s like to look up at a blade of grass. wonder how I’d get from place to place if the drop to the floor was 3-4 times my height. the concept just fills me with goddamn wonder ok. maybe because I was a wee bab in the age of FernGully and Honey I Shrunk The Kids, who knows. but goddamn, the concept is just fucking FASCINATING.
anything with miniaturization is my shit. ant-man’s my shit. honey i shrunk the kids is my shit. inner space is totally my shit (although that’s mostly for different reasons). I own The Ant Bully on DVD.
my reasons for bringing this up are twofold. firstly, to warn my followers because Downsizing is coming out and I am STOKED AS FUCK. and secondly, a bit of a PSA:
WE ALL KNOW IT’S SCIENTIFICALLY IMPOSSIBLE.
Every GODDAMN TIME a movie about miniaturization comes out, some damn wiseguy has to pop up and remind everyone that “their tiny lungs couldn’t breathe the molecules in the air!” or “their bodies would gradually deform due to gravity!” Which is a bullshit thing to do. You don’t get an outcry every time the Hulk gets a movie that GAMMA RAYS DON’T WORK THAT WAY or HE’S VIOLATING CONSERVATION OF MASS because we already know going in that the science is complete nonsense. We don’t CARE, we’re here to have a good time.
tl;dr MOVIES ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO BE GROUNDED IN 100% REALISM. IF YOU’RE GOOD WITH THE HULK, YOU CAN HANDLE ANT-MAN.
this one (larva) has none. most worms don’t do gender, but some decide to be a funny little lad or a sillyboy or a [GIRL WORM] or a fat man or a woman [WORMAN] or a wizard or a cleric or a towering spire of glittering quartz or a Dirt Guy or a slimous friend or an adventurous lass or an eyeball or a piece of string or a jelly molecule, or any other number of things & combinations thereof
The recent discourse about Erik making his own bath bombs has inspired me to investigate and I was actually surprised to learn that Erik could indeed smell the bath bombs despite the fact that he doesn’t have a nose. It does depend on just how the deformity works because obviously if it is completely covered with skin and he can’t breathe through his lack-of-a-nose, then this is different, but I’m going with the idea that he does have some kind of hole where a nose is meant to be.
You see, we do not actually smell with our nose. It’s merely the passageway to get to the smell sensors. The way it works is that smelly things give off chemical molecules, and we inhale those. The nose hairs filter out a lot of it, but some does make it way to the olfactory epithelium, which is underneath the front part of the brain (well behind where the physical nose you can see starts).The molecules get stuck in the layer of mucus that covers the epithelium, and as they dissolve signals are sent to your brain through the olfactory tract, where the smell is interpreted.
Here, a handy diagram to show where it is:
And so it stands to reason that Erik would indeed be able to smell (and therefore taste) things. It would probably be more difficult, but he could. Actually the lack of a nose would cause him greater problems with breathing and with getting respiratory tract infections (as he has no nose hairs to filter germs nor a way to humidify the air reaching his lungs) than it would with smell. It must be pointed out that said difficulty breathing would make smelling much harder, as not as many molecules would reach the olfactory epithelium, but it wouldn’t be impossible.
Can I request a oneshot where the reader is really shy and has anxiety so Castiel or Misha comforts her in crowded or noisy places?? Thanks!!
Pairing: Castiel x Reader
Warnings: Fluff and anxiety (strange combo if you think about it haha)
Word Count: 876
You hated anxiety. With a passion. You especially hated anxiety when you had to go do things on your own. You hated interacting and talking with people. Crowds made you nervous. Hell, you had no idea how you ever became a hunter. Maybe because it was monsters you had to deal with, and not people. People were crazy; and not to mention rude. You’d met demons that were nicer than some humans. You laughed to yourself as you thought maybe you’d be better off as something that wasn’t human.
You took in a deep breath as you looked in your mirror, trying to assure yourself that you looked fine to go out. You grabbed your bag off of your dresser and headed out. Why couldn’t Sam and Dean never do the grocery shopping? Probably because all they would buy is pie and salad. You saw Cas sitting in the war room as you made your way to the bottom of the stairs and wondered what he’d buy if he did the shopping.
How would Danny's ability to turn other people and things intangible fit in with your ghost physics? (It's been ages since I watched the show so I don't remember if other ghosts are shown doing that too.) Also, what about ghosts possessing people?
OOOH SHOOT THAT FIRST ONE MIGHT BE A HOLE IN MY THEORY!
With a lot of energy ectoplasm can force regular matter to behave like itself (which is how Danny does that meat and denim vapor tail), but I described phasing as atomized 4D motion… and if you atomize regular humans they, uh, die? Within this current model I think the only way Danny could safely pull living objects outside of 3D space is through teleportation, aka the more nauseating form of phasing. I guess I could also explain it as phasing all the matter around the person instead of their body, which defies canon but is most plausible; or bullshit up a way for it to be non-fatal, like their nervous system molecules staying close enough together to maintain their brain function. Even if it doesn’t kill you, the latter option sounds like an extremely unpleasant experience…
Honestly, if I were to make Ghost Physics a straight-up AU as opposed to an… elaborate network of headcanons? Phasing non-ghost organisms is one of the things I would trim off of established canon. To me it makes more sense, and creates some interesting scenarios… Trying to phase any regular matter would rattle around its atoms and have some of them swap places, subtly fucking up any phased object. Trying to do it to an organism would result in a nasty burn or death, doing it to stuff like clothes might have slight effects on texture and structural integrity, doing it to stuff like phones and PDAs would wipe their memory (or worse, make them non-functional). The same thing would apply to Danny’s clothes and any object he has in his pockets when he transforms, since he’s literally destroying and remaking them. I hope he’s good at memorizing phone numbers!
For possession, I’m pretty sure I can explain it as a ghost “storing” their normal body in 4D space; then their ecto-signature overlaying, overpowering, and remote controlling a human nervous system instead. It’s… probably actually really dangerous for the host… since the ghost is tugging around on their actual neurons… I can easily see long term possession or “messy” takeovers resulting in death or brain damage :(
To most sensors,
Danny’s setup seems identical to
possession or even a regular ghost, since he has that characteristic 4D hole to the GZ “behind” him. But Danny isn’t stashing a secret ghost body in 4D space (instead he converts himself into one) and his ecto-signature isn’t repressing his human nervous system, he just thinks with both simultaneously.
Everyone has some kind of NSAID in their medicine cabinet whether it be Advil, Aleve, or Aspirin. These drugs are so common that they are often not even considered drugs and so people freely take more than they should or give them to their pets. Understanding how these drugs work not only helps explain why the directions for using them are so specific, but also shows how really amazing it is that we even have them. So, let’s get to the real reason you are here- COX.
Animal and human cells are sort of like water balloons. The “balloon” part of the cell is the membrane which is made up of lipid molecules. The water is actually still water but also filled with lots of different organelles, proteins, enzymes, and other things that make the cell work. Located within the cell membrane is a special lipid called arachidonic acid (AA). Usually AA just hangs out in the membrane not doing a whole lot. It takes an enzyme called phospholipase A2 (PLA2) to free the AA from the cell and let it get to work.
PLA2 is itself “turned on” by other enzymes but to make it simple, it is activated when there is an injury of some kind. It breaks the AA free of the cell membrane so that it can then be turned into other useful molecules.
Usually AA can be turned into three different types of molecules: prostanoids, leukotrienes, and epoxides. We are only going to worry about prostanoids today.
Prostanoids are a group of molecules that do lots of different things in the body including create inflammation, dilate blood vessels, activate platelets, de-activate platelets, protect the GI tract, make sure the kidneys have enough blood flow, and other important for living type things.
Here is where the COX comes in. COX-1 and COX-2 are enzymes that convert arachidonic acid into usable molecules. In very general terms COX-1 is responsible for making housekeeping type molecules, the ones that protect the gut and keep the kidneys working. COX-2 is the enzyme that makes the inflammatory molecules. In reality it isn’t that simple and box COX enzymes overlap in function but we are keeping it simple.
COX converts AA into PGH2 which is then further into five different prostanoids, Thromboxane, PGD2, PGI3, PGF2, and PGE2. The prostanoid we care about right now is prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). PGE2 is an inflammatory mediator and is responsible for the classic signs of inflammation: redness, swelling, pain, and warmth or if you wanna impress your friends using Latin: rubor, tumor, dolor, and calor.
PGE2 has four different receptors that it can bind to, each one doing something a bit different. EP4 is the receptor responsible for causing pain and inflammation.
*Head explosion* I know, it is a lot. Let’s summarize. Injury causes PLA2 to free arachidonic acid from the cell membrane. COX-1 and 2 convert AA into PGH2. PGH2 turns into PGE2. PGE2 binds to receptors on cells which then cause inflammation and pain.
Now we can discuss medications. Corticosteroids like prednisone work by blocking PLA2 way at the beginning of the pathway. This means everything downstream is stopped. There is no production of prostanoids, leukotrienes, or epoxides. Steroids are like bringing a bazooka to a knife fight, they work but there is a lot of collateral damage. We cannot use steroids for very long because of the severe side effects they cause.
NSAID’s are COX blockers. Some block both COX-1 and 2, others are more selective and mostly block COX-2. This prevents formation of PGH2 which prevents all of the prostanoids down stream from being formed. Celebrex was a popular human NAID that preferentially blocked COX-2 which sounded great. However it prevented the formation of PGI2 which was a vasodilator and anti-thrombotic, this caused many people to die of heart attacks. This doesn’t seem to be an issue in pets but blocking COX does lead to GI ulceration and renal damage in some animals. Aspirin irreversibly binds to platelets and prevents clotting which can be a problem in humans and animals in addition to causing GI ulcers.
A fairly new class of drugs called Piprants has been developed and they specifically target one of the receptors that PGE2 binds to. This leaves all of the other molecules available to do their jobs and only prevents pain and inflammation. This means the drug is safe for dogs with liver or kidney disease and shouldn’t have any GI side effects. Hopefully something similar for humans is produced as well.
So that in a very complex nutshell is how NSAID’s work and hopefully now you have a greater understanding of just how important it really is to follow all drug labels. And you now you can tell all your friends about your COX.
*Disclaimer- NEVER give OTC pain meds to your pets. Many are toxic to them and the safe ones require different doses than what humans take. Always consult with your vet first.
Yesterday I got mad at somebody over minor online drama and I was so enraged I wanted to kill her and since I couldn't get to her I wanted to kill anybody, so I looked into terrorist groups and genocidal regimes to see if I could donate. I couldn't find anything before the anger passed but now I am scared this will happen again and I will add to the world's suffering. I have been trying to manage my anger for years but change is slow. Would it be best just to kill myself before it happens again?
This is complicated, and I struggled with an answer for a while because I want to point at some things that I believe are likely to be going on here, without telling you lots of things I can’t possibly know from a single short message. I think the best way to deal with that is to say the things, while letting you know that they take several different angles on what might be going on here and that not all the angles probably apply.
Angle 1: “Would it be best just to kill myself before it happens again?”
People who are chronically suicidal ask themselves if maybe they should kill themself all the time, over all kinds of things. I missed the last train home, maybe I should just kill myself. I need to decide what to have for dinner…or I could just kill myself. It can be ignored; it doesn’t always accompany a strong compulsion to act; often people think that they’re not really suicidal, or that it’s just kind of the way the world is that you’ll spend a lot of your time wondering it if would be better if you died.
People who are chronically suicidal often think that everyone is like this, and are genuinely surprised to learn that there are lots of people who basically never want to kill themselves or wonder if it’d be for the best if they did or find their planning short-circuited by ‘maybe the best next step is to kill myself’.
What I’m trying to gesture at here is that I think that you might be depressed. If you’re depressed, then fixing the being-depressed might also solve the other things that are going on here: trying to find evil organizations to donate to seems like it might come from a thought pattern of ‘I am a bad person and am going to do a bad thing/thought about doing a bad thing/am in danger of doing a bad thing, which will just prove how irredeemable and horrible I am and how I should die”, and maybe if you were not depressed this thought pattern would be interrupted all the way up at “I am a bad person”.
Fixing being-depressed involves a lot of luck and support, of course. I’d be happy to try to give you advice if you write back and say ‘yeah maybe that’s a thing I’m experiencing’. I’m also hoping that maybe it will help just knowing ‘oh, my brain likes to jump to ‘maybe I should kill myself’ when it’s supposed to be problem-solving, I can’t fix that right now but I can be aware that brains are not supposed to do that and that I should treat that thought as untrustworthy’.
You should treat that thought as untrustworthy. It is untrustworthy. You have a brain that occasionally spits out ‘suicide’ as an answer to questions when the answer should be ‘spaghetti’ or ‘call an Uber’ or 'don’t get into stupid arguments on the internet’. It may be an excellent brain in other respects but in this respect it is silly and the correct response is to roll your eyes and go ‘no, brain, sorry, keep problem-solving, that was a terrible answer and you know it’.
Angle 2: ‘I have been trying to manage my anger for years but change is slow.’
Good for you! I don’t have an anger management problem but I have had emotions so strong that they temporarily override everything else I care about, and they are deeply unpleasant to experience, and I am really sorry that this happens to you. It sounds like it would be really unpleasant in its own right, really scary to look back on in retrospect once you calmed down, and hard to get good help with.
I assume since you’ve been at this for a while you’ve already tried more things than I’ll come up with for a blog post. But some things you could consider: making a scale of how angry you are, from, like, “I want to swat a mosquito with unnecessary force’ through “I want to scatter all of the molecules in the observable universe until they are distributed for maximum entropy. And then light them on fire. And then light the fire on fire. And thereby cause the next Big Bang.”
I do not think any things on this list should be actionable. Not because I’m worried you’ll do it - I think that the fact your anger directed itself at ‘find something harmful to donate money to’ instead of at ‘scream at my cat’ or ‘wreck someone’s possessions’ is really encouraging, and I think that you are not likely to do harmful things in blinding anger. But I think that focusing on an actionable kind of anger is bad for you - you feel scared afterwards of what you ‘almost did’. and you have a harder time accessing help. So try not to have any “I want to kill someone” on there, in favor of “I want to change all of the chocolate they eat into something with the flavor of burnt pizza crust” or “I want their new roommate to have bedbugs, and lice, and the bubonic plague” or whatever.
Worst case, it doesn’t work and you read a long list of ridiculous harms and think ‘nope, still want to kill them’. Best case, you can come up with something that speaks to you when you’re angry or the process of coming up with something is itself calming.
Also, consider that internet drama is horrible, really, actually, and it’s often advisable to stop using sites that make you miserable, not because you have a problem but because you being miserable is a problem. Deleting/blocking/avoiding is not giving up, it is solving the problem of ‘you are miserable’ and it is often good.
hey, just so you know, that post about thigmonasty and thigmotropism in plants isn't factually sound. plant consciousness is fringe science and widely disputed because it's like a plant biologist's wishful dreaming with essentially no evidence. aquaporins and calcium channels get damaged with overuse; auxins, gradients, and calcium levels increase or decrease as an automatic plant response to stimuli, it goes on and on. there's far more concrete evidence against "thinking" plants than for it!
people are still very interested in tropisms and nastic movements, & there’s a lot more new stuff to learn. the effects and levels of plant hormones, newly discovered molecules, & ions are rapidly being made known to the plant bio community. all of the things i mentioned play a role in these responses to stimuli, how rapidly&frequently they can happen, or whether they can even happen at all in some circumstances! plus without a cns plants cannot experience cognition in any way animals do, period
This is all very good stuff! Thanks for writing it out.
I gotta be honest, I don’t even think that the article mentioned plants experiencing cognition like animals. I agree that would be ludicrous. I just thought the experiment itself was really cool in terms of how the responses to stimuli changed!
I understand that fringe science isn’t something to be pounced on and taken lightly and believed at first sight. But to be honest there’s nothing wrong with taking a healthy, skeptical interest in various theories without getting tangled up in tinfoil hat stuff.
Personally for me, in the linguistics side which takes my interest the most (development of language in humans) this is probably something akin to the claim that “whales have a language!”. The parameters we use to measure specific concepts like “language” and “consciousness” are guarded by constraints that scientists put on them to make them easier to identify. However, that doesn’t mean that either one is a binary THERE or NOT type of deal.
Correct me if I’m wrong but… Cognition is a flowing scale. Language and communication is a flowing scale. Human language and human cognition are specifically defined terms that cannot be over-applied. Animal communication and animal cognition, while not the same as human language and human cognition, nonetheless exist on the spectrum of our understanding of the parameters outside of our own experience. Why can’t we also consider this, theoretically, to be at some point connecting to non-animal organisms? Despite their existence being incredibly far-off from that of the consciousness that we know, it’s still cool to theorize about how they experience their world.
Sorry, I know that this type of stuff is actually going CLOSER to fringe science, and I know that it’s also ridiculous. :D It’s just cool in theory. Doesn’t mean I think plants can experience their world the same way as animals.
Okay, so I was just introduced today to a concept called “Water Fasting”. This is where you just drink lots of water and don’t eat for an extended period of time. Like as long as a month or even TWO MONTHS. I am not really an expert in medical knowledge, anatomy, or nutrition, but I’m pretty sure I can least several reasons why this is a bad solution for weight loss. However, if you do have any professional expertise in such an area, I absolutely encourage you to reblog this and leave your input along with your credentials potentially.
First Born 9x11: Or the one where Robbie became the biggest Destiel shipper ever
“First Born” gave us a dose of Castiel that should (never) be enough to keep us alive for the coming 5 weeks without him (hoping Misha is indeed in 9x14 “Captives”, an episode written by Rob Berens, who gave us “Heaven Can’t Wait”). By this point, I hope that everybody who reads my reviews (meta?) knows that I always focus on Destiel, so any further discussion on the myth arc is not happening here.
Team Free Will were not together in this episode, but we got very gratifying moments between Dean & Crowley and Sam & Cas. Most importantly, we even got Destiel moments even though Dean and Cas were apart from each other. In fact, the first thing I have to say about this episode is ROBBIE, YOU’RE A FREAKING GENIUS! In my mind, Robbie Thompson has confirmed his position as a Destiel shipper, and he has done it in the most elegant way possible. But let’s discuss this more thoroughly.
I don’t really know if I should bring this up, but I guess I’ll try because some people always find a way to scream “no homo” to their screens. The scene at the bar? Dean glancing at the waitress? Please, don’t say it was the “no homo” part of the episode! The waitress was flirting. Dean just glanced at her the way even I would glance at any man or woman who smiled at me and gave me the once-over in such an obvious flirting way. Why was the person flirting with him not a male? Because… reasons!! There’s a time and place for everything and this episode was not for addressing something of the sort. I think we (Destiel shippers) agree that Dean is bisexual, right? So let’s not be hypocrites and scream “no homo” every time Dean interacts with/smiles at/glances at a woman. Being bisexual is not about being 50/50. You should memorize that and remember it every time you see Dean and Cas interact with females. If you are one of those who are always complaining about it (been there, done that), then you should read a little more about bisexuality because I’m afraid you don’t know the term as well as you thought. You think the glance was unnecessary? Maybe you’re right. But if it was there, there must be a reason, so instead of freaking out, try to ask yourself why they thought they needed that in the scene. My personal answer (and it’s ok if you don’t agree) is that Dean’s self-esteem is at the lowest point you could ever imagine. When you’re like that, when you think so little of yourself, you crave other people’s attention. You want to feel valued, loved, appreciated, and you look for that in all the wrong places. When you don’t love yourself, it’s easy to be promiscuous and pretend to enjoy it. Unfortunately, that only makes you feel emptier afterward. At his lowest points, Dean always finds comfort in sex because he knows what to do around ladies to make them want him, but that’s just proof of how much he objectifies himself and how little he thinks he deserves to be wanted for who he is not for what he does. I can assure you that if Crowley hadn’t showed up, Dean would have hooked up with that waitress and it would have been just another meaningless one night stand. Even Crowley noticed this evidence of Dean’s self-denigration. (“This bar is a bust. That waitress is trouble with a capital VD”). And I’m sure Robbie wrote those lines to make sure the audience noticed too. That being said, “it’s time to move on to more pressing matters” (see what I did there? Lol)
Meanwhile, Castiel is staying at the Bunker with Sam and OMG ROBBIE, that sandwich! The conversation about PB&J. That was so brilliant that I really need to apologize in advance for overwhelming you with all my Destiel feels.
Castiel: When I was human, I had to eat constantly. It was kind of annoying.
Sam: Yeah, a lot of human things are pretty annoying.
Castiel: But, I enjoyed the taste of food, particularly peanut butter and grape jelly, not jam, jam I found unsettling.
Sam: So, what? Now you can’t taste PB&J?
Castiel: No, I… taste every molecule.
Sam: Not some of its parts, uh?
Castiel: It’s overwhelming. It’s disgusting. I miss you PB&J.
Castiel is an angel now and he’s eating, which tells us that it’s possible for him to do it even though he doesn’t need it. However, the experience was very different when he was human. He felt things he hadn’t felt before, and he enjoyed them, though he sometimes thought the urge (to eat) was annoying. He learned to make distinctions between the things he liked and didn’t like. But now that he’s an angel again, he can tell that what he feels in the same circumstances is different because he has something to compare it to. Now he knows that being an angel gives him an infinite understanding of things in such a broad way that he cannot really enjoy it the way he used to when he was human. And you know what? He misses that. He misses what he felt when he was human. He misses PB&J although we all know that Robbie wrote those lines that took one whole minute to tell us something more about Cas, something that has nothing to do with food and everything to do with Cas’ feelings (of regret, guilt, empathy, friendship, love). Why is this important for Destiel? I think it’s obvious. Cas was created to love (God, his brothers and sisters, humans) and he had a huge understanding of what love was supposed to be, but he had never REALLY experienced it, embraced it, or even enjoyed it. We all know that Cas loves Dean, very much, but did Cas know that there are different types of love? What did he feel when he was human? Maybe pain in 9x03 when Dean kicked him out of the Bunker? Confusion, frustration, anger and sadness in 9x06 where Dean was involved? Pain again in 9x09 when Dean sent him away once more? What did Cas learn from his experience as human? What did Cas learn about his feelings for Dean? Did what happened with/to Dean affect him as much as anything that happened with/to Sam or with/to the other angels? What did he learn from his experience with April? Did he ever feel like being intimate with someone else the way his body knew how to do when April initiated intimacy? No wonder why Cas thought some urges/needs were annoying! My point is that there is a question we haven’t been given the answer yet, simply because Cas DIDN’T KNOW THE ANSWER. (8X17)
Dean: What broke the connection?
Castiel: I don’t know.
Do I really have to remind you that Robbie Thompson wrote 8x17? I think that now Cas is getting closer to understanding the answer that we have known all along. Yes, that answer we all (even casual viewers) screamed at our screens the night 8x17 aired.
YOU, DEAN!! YOU!!!
Dean was the one who broke the connection. The love Cas feels for Dean is what broke the connection. But what kind of love is it? Robbie clearly gave us the answer in 9x04. Platonic love cannot overcome mind control (Haggerty couldn’t save his friend Jerkins). Familial love cannot overcome mind control (Charlie couldn’t save Dean –and we all know she’s like his little sister). So… what kind of love is powerful enough to overcome mind control? ROMANTIC LOVE! (That’s a trope, in case you didn’t know). By the way, who wrote 9x04? OH YES, ROBBIE FUCKING-AWESOME THOMPSON! Do you see why I think Robbie is an elegant Destiel shipper through and through? But that’s not all. We’re still missing some important things. So let’s continue.
How many times did Cas mention Dean’s name? Seriously, what the hell? The moment he noticed something odd in Sam, the first thing he said was “Maybe we should call Dean”. Then he voluntarily brought Dean up to Sam to try to defend him and fix things between the brothers.
Castiel: Sam, the trials… you chose not to go through with them for a reason, didn’t you? You chose to live rather than to sacrifice yourself. You and Dean, you chose each other.
Sam: Yeah, I did. We did. And then… Dean made the choice for me.
Castiel: What Dean did…
Sam: It doesn’t matter what Dean did. Look, I could have put a stop to all of this, Cas, I could have closed the gates of hell…
Castiel: No, Sam…
Sam: Dean’s gone, ok? This is on me now and if I can find Gadreel, I can fix this.
When Sam said “Dean’s gone”, I kind of expected Castiel to pout, like a teenager who’s been told by their parents that they can’t have their boyfriend come over.
Also, I can’t help but notice the way Cas phrased his question to Sam: “Why must the Winchesters run toward death?” He didn’t say “Why must YOU run toward death?” He was talking to Sam and had Sam’s life in his hands, but he was also thinking about Dean. Apparently, Cas can’t get Dean out of his mind. Later on, Cas looked at the PB&J sandwich and what it represents and decided that nothing was worth losing Sam. The way Cas healed Sam was not very gentle. We could even hear the thump when Sam’s head hit the chair. When I rewatched the episode, I couldn’t help laughing because all I could think was “Cas is tired of your bullshit, you stubborn son of a bitch.” Then we had this:
Castiel: Being human didn’t just change my view of food. It changed my view of you. I mean, I can relate now to how you feel.
Sam: What are you talking about?
Castiel: The only person who has screwed things up more consistently than you is me. And now I know what that guilt feels like. And I know what it means to feel sorry, Sam. I am sorry.
Sam: I know.
Castiel: You know, old me, I would have just kept going. I would have jammed that needle in deeper until you died because the ends always justified the means. But what I went through, that PB&J taught me that angels can change, so… who knows? Maybe Winchesters can, too.
That speech was BEAUTIFUL for so many reasons. Beautiful because Sam needed to hear such words (considering his self-worth is very low, too, poor baby). Beautiful because in the end, Cas got to show Sam (and us) that there’s still hope for the Winchester brothers and that they can get rid of their freaking codependency (they can still change). Beautiful because it shows us huge character development for Castiel. How can people be upset because they say Cas was OOC? That was the point!! This is a new Cas. Old cas would have just killed Sam. Cas said it himself! Beautiful because it shows us that even though Cas felt sorry and guilty in the past (seasons 7 and 8), he now understands that he didn’t know what it really meant to feel that way. And that, my friends, is true for all the feelings Cas experienced while human. (Yes!! Love included!!).
And last but not least, the Cain-Abel-Colette and Dean-Sam-Castiel parallels. Please, don’t insult Robbie’s intelligence by saying there are no parallels after I have proved to you how Robbie connected 8x17 and 9x04 to 9x11 (episodes that HE wrote). Robbie is a brilliant man and if we ever doubted how much he ships Destiel, I think we can put away those doubts.
I think we all saw Robbie’s tweet. Now that we have seen 9x11, can someone tell me what 5x13, 6x20 and 9x11 have in common?
Some people made the connection pretty fast, (X) but I’m sure no one actually expected to hear the line so blatantly obvious.
Cain: I’ve tried, I’ve tried, Colette, to see myself as you did. But I know who I am, and what I am. I know YOU WATCH OVER ME still, but I need you to look away now.
Cain actually prayed to Colette, with the same faith we’ve seen Dean pray to Cas. And what he said before this prayer is an accurate description of Cas in Dean’s life.
Cain: She knew who I was, what I was. She loved me unconditionally. She forgave me.
If 9x10 and 9x11 have showed us something is how unconditionally Cas loves Dean, how ready he is to forgive Dean (even when Dean can’t forgive himself). Cas knows Dean; he even saw Dean in hell when Dean was torturing souls. Cas has seen the darkest parts of Dean’s soul and he still sees Dean differently, as worthy of salvation, redemption, and love –though Dean can’t see himself that way yet. Casual viewers may not remember all this. Casual viewers may not even know all this because maybe they haven’t watched previous seasons (but they must have watched the previous episode). What I really want to emphasize here is that the fandom does know all this. And Robbie pointed us in the direction of the episodes he wanted THE FANDOM to remember. ROBBIE THOMPSON, SERIOUSLY, CAN I MARRY YOU?
The last minutes of this marvelous episode gave us THE HUG. Sam and Cas! Wow! That was sooooo good! I think I can still hear the “just da brothers” fans moaning and grunting in the distance. All the people who think Sam doesn’t like Cas or vice versa, all the people who think Destiel shippers hate Sam… let me revel in my tears of joy. THE HUG will be one of the most memorable moments of the show, IMHO. (Now let’s just hope Cas has the chance to show Dean that he learned how to give a hug properly). By the way, poor Cas wanted to bring Dean up in the conversation until the very end of the episode.
Castiel: You know Sam, we could use all the help we could get to find Gadreel and Metatron.
If season 8 showed us clearly how much Dean wanted Cas to stay with them, season 9 is showing us how much Cas wants Dean to be with them. Meanwhile, I’m just gonna drown in my own feels over these two idjits.
To end this incredibly long meta (I’m not sure if it’s meta, but at least I try), I’ll attempt to share my peace of mind with you, guys. Some people are worried because Cain had to kill Abel to save his soul and accidentally killed Colette when trying to kill Abaddon. They think this means Dean will have to kill Sam to save him and will accidentally kill Cas. Killing Cas off would be a dick move and they know it. I’m gonna play the Misha card here, but no one in their right mind would kill Cas off and risk a gigantic drop in ratings. Besides, I firmly believe that the end-game for our three boys will be a happy one. We already know what Sam wants (a wife and his apple pie life) and that’s gonna be his end-game. We’re starting to realize what Cas wants (because he’s finally discovering it himself) and that’s gonna be his end-game (saving people, hunting things, being human, staying with Dean). Now we just need Dean to get rid of the poison he has inside (codependency) so he finally stops hating himself and discovers what he really wants (somewhere along the lines of saving people, hunting things, having a healthy relationship with his brother, and staying with Cas –“Nobody wants him here more than I do”) and that’s gonna be his end-game. For this to be true, the three of them need to STAY ALIVE! So, NOPE, I’m not worried about the boys dying, but I’m aware that we’re gonna suffer A LOT because shit is gonna get more serious in the rest of season 9 and it’s gonna get even worse in season 10.
“There’s always something with you boys, isn’t there??!!“ We better be ready!