THINK, NOT SINK. “The multitude of books is making us ignorant.” Equally the same, the multitude of digital information sources is making us ignorant. True knowledge requires a sustained line of “thinking”. Today’s information has a source-sink relationship, like water going fast down the sink, down the drain, there’s not much time for the information to meet the brain, so some fiction becomes fact, absent critical thinking.
Month: August 2015
Why Do People Continually Smoke Hookah / Shisha?
I have been observing hookah smokers for a long time. I compiled a list of the top reasons why people continually smoke it. This extensive list is by no means meant to encourage smoking.
1. Primitive instinct. Sucking on a hookah tip is reminiscent subconsciously of being breastfed (comforting action. ) Few years ago, I helped name an American disposable hookah hose brand the Puff Baby, based on this reason.
2. Yoga action. End of the day, with all of the stress of the day, one becomes short-breathed and tired. Smoking hookah will help the smoker relax through continual long duration inhalation and exhalation cycles. This mimics some yoga exercising, albeit with harmful smoke instead of fresh air. The filling-and-emptying exercise is undoubtedly relaxing.
3. Nicotine gets replenished in the blood for those addicted to smoking. Within seconds there comes the adrenaline rush, a boost in energy (heart rate increase), followed by a boost in pleasure thanks to increased dopamine in the blood stream. This puts hookah tobacco closer to Psychoactive drugs.
4. Forbidden Fruit. Look this way, I’m smoking. How cool is that?
5. Hookah Lounge. Social life, hanging out, showing off, expressing oneself. A night club alternative? Open till late night.
6. Malicious Exotic Fruit Association. Strong realistic flavors mixed with tobacco. Orange hookah head, pineapple head, watermelon head, etc. It can’t get healthier than that! Or not?
This is part 1. I will discuss the harms of hookah smoking under a separate cover.
NEUROLOGY, FRONTAL CORTEX, THE QURAN, AND SYSTEMS ENGINEERING.
There’s a lot of talk about the connection between verses in the Quran implicitly citing the frontal brain cortex as responsible for lying / wrong-doing, and recent academic research independently supporting this citation.
The direct verse: “No! If he does not stop, We will take him by the naseyah, a lying sinful naseyah” (Quran 96:15-16), where naseyah is generally explained as the front of head of human or animal.
The academic research is documented well – and is easily searchable – on the fact that the pre-frontal area is responsible for decision-making; e.g. lying vs telling the truth.
I am adding to this today a system element, which is that of the “controller” in a feedback loop system as shown in the attached diagram.
More than it being a processing unit, I think the naseyah is the controller only, it has the algorithm and filters that minimize the errors, relative to the individual’s ideals (level of faith.) The job of the controller ends with a signal that goes to the brain (processor) to trigger an action through the available body actuators (hands, legs, mouth, etc.) These actions maybe good or evil, depending on the controller and its logic.
Following the action, the sensors (eyes and ears) collect data about the output (response), and feed it back to the controller for additional revised (improved or worsened) control signals. For example, to change mind about sth that was said or apologies about action, or take new action (walk away, say sth else, etc).
The controller is the most important part of a system because the logic in it defines the efficiency of the entire system. If the person is educated (refined logic), the system (person) response will be more fine-tuned, more stable (less violent, no erratic response), and will reach his or her set target.
Controller logic means the different filters (education, faith, ethics, and other decision filters). In the frontal cortex, this is a complex highly non-linear algorithm.
In the first surah (chapter) of the Quran, it reads: “guide us to the straight path”, the straight path defined by God is a system target. How fast you can reach this target will depend on the controller algorithm (again depends on education, faith, ethics, etc.) A good efficient controller is one that takes you, fastest, in stable mode to the desired target.
Note also that the location of the brain controller is, by design, near the eyes, which is the primary sensor for efficient feedback and filtering.
The goal of this short article is to clarify what the job of the brain pre-frontal area (controller) is. The current conclusions following related academic research are attributing more to this controller than it actually does, it is only one part of the system; processing, actions, sensors have other complementary roles too.
Why Do You Need Money?
The short answer is to buy commodities. Imagine that you lived on a farm and you had on site everything you needed to subsist; meat, wool, wood, water, fruits, and vegetables. Then you do not need money, and you’re fully independent. The first $100 that was printed was to get someone “in debt” by this amount so that person would buy a commodity (gas, flour, etc) The amount is paid against labor performed, labor is the worker’s capital, his/her input. Commodities are traded in USD. Today, if we all drove solar-powered cars, then we could afford to work a few hours less per week (cost of gasoline saved). You could enjoy life better with your family. But banks and the commodity oligarchs are not interested in such efficient systems. They want you to get more in debt, promoting more commodity derivatives that you may not even need. Before you purchase anything, ask yourself if you need it, and find ways to be self-sufficient (your small farm/garden, bicycle riding when possible, etc) in attempt to emancipate yourself from commodity slavery. If you inspect a $1.00 bill, it reads an instrument of “debt”, not an instrument of credit. In theory, you need less money, not more, to be free.
Sorbitol in Hookah Tobacco
This is always a “hot” topic. Hookah Tobacco consists of about 20% tobacco, and the rest is Glycerin (vegetable product), artificial flavors (esters, etc.), and sweetners (sugars, invert sugar, and/or sorbitol) which oftentimes are loosely referred to as honey or sweet base molasses. It hardly ever contains natural flavors.
Here I will only discuss “Sorbitol”, which is a sweetner you most commonly find in your toothpaste along with Xylitol. Your body naturally makes sorbitol when breaking down glucose. When you smoke hookah, sorbitol will be completely burnt at around 300 degrees C (coal burning temperature.) This is a very high temperature. The result is formaldehyde and acetaldehyde, some known carcinogens to humans. These products materialize thru the hydrogenation of CO. If your eyes become red or itchy while smoking, this maybe the result of 2 additional by-products; acrolein, and furfural.
The hookah Tobacco ingredients look innocent on the surface, but once you burn them at 300 deg C, the ugly output shows up.
Jordan is one of the world’s top producers of hookah tobacco. This makes it a primary exporter of cancer to humans smoking these productks. This unfortunately helps indirectly solve part of the global over-population problem.
On Sales Leverage
Many companies and shops are open for business everyday and do not have a leverage product in their product mix. For example, a shop may have 10 products yielding 10% each. Say you’re selling scarves at $5 each, yielding a net profit of $2; in a day, you will need to sell 50 pieces to make $100 in profit (maybe you even have to deal with 50 customers!) Instead, you could identify 1 product yielding $50 in profit per transaction (like a suit or leather jacket), so in a day, you need to sell 2 products to lock in $100 in profit. Compare this to dealing with 30 to 50 customers selling low leverage products. Many companies struggle because they do not have leverage products, or if they do have them, they fail to promote them well. Look around at your business or shop, identify those high value leverage products (high profit density items) and market them well. Happy Selling!
On Death and Energy
Death is not the end if you think of yourself as some form of energy. There will be a transformation. Death is the end if you think of mass alone. E=mc2. The only way to transcend and reach light years (distance) quickly is to travel at the speed of light, at which time you will have been converted to E (100% Energy). No mass! Get it?