Connect with us

The Book That Shows That The World Cannot Be Properly Understood Through Just The Mind

Avatar

Published

on

An in-depth review of the book Why Materialism Is Baloney by Bernardo Kastrup. The book is currently available for pre-order on Amazon, with its release slated for April 2014.

advertisement - learn more

Cover 72ppiThe “problem” with this marvelous book is that those among us who most need to confront its wisdom won’t have the openness to do so. And those with the openness to do so may not really require these explanations.

-->Listened to our latest podcast episode yet? Joe and Dr. Madhava Setty deliver a special report aimed at gaining clarity around the COVID-19 vaccine. Is it safe and effective? Can it actually change your DNA? Click here to listen!

Kastrup goes about as far as one can go to use language, concepts and metaphors to “prove” that the world cannot possibly be understood merely through the mind as something separately knowable and immanently material.

Those who read Collective Evolution already probably resonate with Eckhart Tolle’s famous lines, “life is not the opposite of death; birth is the opposite of death; Life has no opposite” or “the mind cannot know the mind.”

To those who run our planet and form the backbone of our “science” this makes no sense. But they’re the ones who need to read this book and better yet, let them argue against Kastrup who uses their own scientific method to thoroughly discredit the arrogant assumptions of much of science.

For this reason he had me on board on page 14:

advertisement - learn more

“The true underlying nature of reality – the inner workings of the computer running the game – is an issue of metaphysics; an issue of philosophy. It requires different methods to be properly assessed and understood. For as long as scientists like Stephen Hawking are allowed to make preposterous pseudo-philosophical pronouncements and not be either ignored or thoroughly ridiculed by the mainstream media – in exactly the same way that, say, a famous artist would be ridiculed or ignored for making pseudo-scientific statements – our culture will fail to understand the nature of our predicament.”

Kastrup would make a wonderful attorney or debater in a “courtroom of reality” by stating his case against the current scientific assumption:

“Materialism asserts that reality exists outside your mind in the form of assemblies of material particles occupying the framework of space-time. Even energy fields are imagined, in current physics, to be force-carrying material particles.  The existence of this material reality is supposed to be completely independent of your, or anyone else’s, subjective perception of it. Thus, even if there were no conscious beings observing reality, it would supposedly still go merrily on: the planets would still orbit the sun, the continents would still drift, volcanoes would still erupt, crystals would still form in the bowels of the Earth and so on. That there is such a thing as consciousness is, according to materialism, a product of chance configurations of matter, driven mechanically by the pressures of natural selection. We are supposedly an accident of probabilities.” (15)

The 800 lb. gorilla for science:

But when it comes to consciousness, nothing allows us to deduce the properties of subjective experience – the redness of red, the bitterness of regret, the warmth of fire – from the mass, momentum, spin, charge, or any other property of subatomic particles bouncing around in the brain. This is the hard problem of consciousness.  As a matter of fact, consciousness is a sore on the foot of materialism. The materialist understanding of the world would seem a lot more solid if there were no such a thing as subjective experience at all.”(17)

Here the author is echoing the concept that Deepak Chopra often puts forth as “qualia” –the subjective aspect of our experience that is not scientifically definable and yet we know it; a great example of this is when Peter Francis Dziubian says that you can read everything that has ever been written about wine and never know how wine tastes.

Eventually Kastrup builds a powerful case for non-locality of consciousness; again resonating with comments made by Dr.Daniel Siegel at the Wisdom 2.0 conference when he suggested (as a neuroscientist) that his studies in the brain and the apparent “nonexistence” of a coherent self has led him to the realization that there is “no reason the self should be bounded by our skin.  We are ‘not the body.’  The self is both me and we and ultimately a new, and perhaps third entity, a MWE.”

A blistering critique of scientist like Hawking:

“If it serves as consolation, notice that all worldviews, including materialism, entail analogous paradoxes when it comes to the ultimate origin of everything. Big Bang theory, for instance, carries this contradiction in another form: how did everything, in the form of a bang, come out of an absolute void? What was there to bang?  One is immediately confronted with the contradiction that, while there was nothing in the beginning, there had to be at least a potential, with certain properties and attributes, which could have led to a bang.”  (153)

One might snarkly add –“who was there to bang?” because a “what” and a “who” are both mental concepts and what Kastrup is pointing to here is the poverty of such linguistic attempts at understanding what is. Indeed the word “potential” is another tip-off because it harkens directly to Heisenberg’s revolutionary Uncertainty Principle but “where” can potential “exist” except as a mental property. Where is potential in nature aside from inside a sentient being’s intelligence?

When Kastrup starts to build his own theory, or speculates on aspects of “freewill” he may get on shaky ground, because now he is describing consciousness (or the “membrane”) in quasi-physical terms that may hold some value or truth but cannot be “proven.” Freewill, for example, flies in the face of recent neuroscience experiments and yet we can and have the feeling or experience of choice; even Eckhart Tolle talks about aspects of choice in his work –we can “choose” whether to accept a situation, try to change it, or leave the locale. But essentially freewill is just another concept that can only be experienced by trying to DO and whether there is a ME that is “free” can never fully be known outside of a loop or paradox.

Where I think Kastrup shines, however, is in pointing out the limitations of scientism from a scientific perspective –unmasking it as the emperor with no (empirical) clothes and opening the reader up to alternative concepts of the reality of nonlocalized intelligence and consciousness. To his credit, Kastrup (as a scientist) deals well with paradox –he doesn’t attempt to fight or explain it; he points it out as a necessary byproduct of our own mental limitations or a function of what is (we are not in a position to know which).

“A core idea of this book is the notion that localized segments of mind at large can become immersed in the illusion of being separate from the rest of the broader membrane. The illusion originates from the self-reflective amplification of certain mental contents to the detriment of others. The ego becomes blind to the broader membrane of mind, identifying itself solely.”  (191)

Here he again resonates with the premise of much of Eckhart Tolle’s work—the fact that there is a functioning logical entity within us with which we identify but that is not what we truly are by nature. Ego is known by consciousness when we awaken to our nature, but we are not our Ego, and if we seek to identify “what” or “who” is consciousness we miss –because it is nonmaterial – an “empty” loop of subjectivity.

Kastrup also makes his points mainly with metaphors and analogies. One of the most evocative is that of the body as a partial “echo” of consciousness (vibration) like a tuning fork.

Here he has a striking insight relative to the sacred science of Egypt –or mummification –when he writes:

“The living body is not a mere habitation of the soul, but a true – albeit partial – image of the conscious entity. It is not an artificial shell, or a distorting barrier concealing and cloaking an inner entity, but the authentic way in which the conscious entity manifests in consensus reality. As such, it is not invalid to think of a person according to her body image: the body image is as honest to the conscious entity as flames are honest to combustion. However, it is ludicrous to think of the body image as the complete story about a person, in the same way that is incorrect to think that flames are all there is to combustion.”  (178)

Another powerful image that Kastrup uses is the whirlpool with respect to the “relationship” between the “individual” and consciousness –similar to the wave as part of the ocean; but in the case of a whirlpool you have the added dimensions of depth and continuity and perhaps most interesting to me –the whirlpool on a massive scale actually exists as the center of our galaxy as a black hole –literally annihilating all matter and time into a vortex of –what? Mind?

Kastrup says:

“The body image, of course, compounds the illusion. The body is simply an image in mind of a process of localization of mind, just like a whirlpool is an image in water of a process of localization of water. The body doesn’t  imply anything other than mind and its movements, in exactly the same way that a whirlpool doesn’t  imply anything other than water and its movements.”

When you then consider the image of a tuning fork, and the faint residue or “partial image” of the original vibration and how it seems to continue well beyond our capacity to sense or “hear” it, it speaks to an entirely different concept of energy and nature itself.  When one considers also that even astrophysicists have discovered the cosmic “background” static of the Big Bang itself as “evidence” –the implications are staggering.

spectrum

From Dr. Jay Kumar’s presentation at SAND.

Kastrup makes the point made by Aldous Huxley in Doors of Perception that essentially our brains are “filters” of consciousness, so that if everything (all vibration in the universe) were known we would be overwhelmed; hence our filtered view of reality (by consensus) is extremely limited.  This filtering mechanism is actually the Ego, which connects to Kastrup’s suggestion about death; while he admits with the usual humility that obviously no one knows –he says:

“The mental process we call physical death ‘makes the unconscious more conscious’  because it eliminates a source of obfuscation; namely, the egoic loop.” (182) In other words it “literally” removes the filter that temporarily (while “alive”) allowed the ego to think it was a “Self.”

Kastrup goes on to describe the many ways this view of the ego and consciousness “explains” much of what we know about “primitive” cultures and their nonfiltered awareness of nature.

And here is his elegant explanation of “freewill”:

“Freewill is a property of mind at large. It is distributed uniformly throughout the membrane [Kastrup’s metaphor for One Consciousness]. However, because of self-reflective amplification [Ego loop], we identify ourselves only with a very small part of mind. Only the freewill at work within this small field of amplification is recognized by the ego as its own will. The force – the primary cause – that puts the rest of the membrane of mind in motion is seen by the ego as foreign and utterly outside its control.”

This realization and its impending death (of the Ego) is likely what Gurdjieff called “the terror of the situation” and we often call the “void” – which can be both a source of anxiety or, upon “awakening,” the beginning of exhilaration.

What is so appealing is that for all of the difficult reasoning and language, the author is very humble. He concludes:

“Do I believe that the way of thinking laid out in this book nails down the truth? Do I believe that my metaphysics is complete? Of course not. Such a belief would be of exceptional hubris and naïveté. What I do believe is that the worldview discussed here is a concrete and sound step forward when compared to the reigning paradigm. As I hope to have demonstrated, it explains all aspects of reality that materialism claims to explain, and then many more. As such, I’m absolutely convinced that my formulation of idealism is significantly closer to the truth than the madness of materialism.”

For all of his humility Kastrup is a brilliant writer; while some of his paragraphs are long and arduous they make for a compelling organic unity. Here is a sample summation:

“…when you close your garage door behind you in the evening, it’s clear that some process holds the pattern of things you leave behind in the garage – including your car – while you are asleep, since you can come back to that same pattern in the next morning. There is no denying this. But, because of the assumption of realism, materialists must then associate the pattern with a universe outside mind itself. Drop the assumption of realism and the original deduction leads to a completely different, and much more parsimonious, conclusion: the process that holds the pattern is a mental process that happens to transcend egoic awareness, in the same way that the mental processes responsible for generating dreams or schizophrenic visions also transcend the ego. That a pattern can be held – and even develop – independently of the ego does not mean that such pattern isn’t still purely mental. A whole phenomenological universe indeed unfolds outside the ego, but not outside mind. Such a trans-egoic universe is still an experience, but the experience of a broad, non-personal, non-self-reflective segment of mind.”

Paragraphs like this are not always easy to follow but if you do the work, they elegantly lay out a very comprehensive and viable notion of reality. Kastrup has laid out his case in a very compelling scientific style. For those who would like to follow this line, and for perhaps an equally deep discussion of scientism I would recommend Jacob Needleman’s “A Sense of the Cosmos.”

At this talk at SAND (Science and Nonduality) Kastrup defined himself (to the extent that he ever would) as a “skeptic” –which has a long tradition in philosophy but ultimately is another name for accepting not knowing.  That attitude alone makes this a book worth investigating.

Advertisement
advertisement - learn more

Alternative News

Norway Investigates 29 Deaths in Elderly Patients After Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccination

Avatar

Published

on

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Norway has registered a total of 29 deaths among people over the age of 75 who’ve had their first Covid-19 vaccination shot, raising questions over which groups to target in national inoculation programs.

  • Reflect On:

    Should freedom of choice always remain here? Should governments and private institutions not be allowed to mandate this vaccine in order to have access to certain rights and freedoms?

What Happened: 29 patients who were quite old and frail have died following their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination. As a result, Norwegian officials have since adjusted their advice on who should get the COVID-19 vaccine.

This doesn’t come as a surprise to many given the fact that the clinical trials were conducted with people who are healthy. Older and sick people with co-morbidities were not used in the trials, and people with severe allergies and other diseases that can make one more susceptible to vaccine injury were not used either. It can be confusing given the fact that vaccination is being encouraged for the elderly in nursing homes and those who are more vulnerable to COVID-19.

Steinar Madsen, medical director of the Norwegian Medicines Agency (NOMA), told the British Medical Journal (BMJ) that “There is no certain connection between these deaths and the vaccine.”

On the 15th of January it was 23 deaths, Bloomberg is now reporting that a total of 29 deaths among people over the age of 75 who’ve had their first COVID-19 shot. They point out that “Until Friday, Pfizer/BioNTech was the only vaccine available in Norway”, stating that the Norwegian Medicines Agency told them that as a result “all deaths are thus linked to this vaccine.”

“There are 13 deaths that have been assessed, and we are aware of another 16 deaths that are currently being assessed,” the agency said. All the reported deaths related to “elderly people with serious basic disorders,” it said. “Most people have experienced the expected side effects of the vaccine, such as nausea and vomiting, fever, local reactions at the injection site, and worsening of their underlying condition.”

Madsen also told the BMJ that,

There is a possibility that these common adverse reactions, that are not dangerous in fitter, younger patients and are not unusual with vaccines, may aggravate underlying disease in the elderly. We are not alarmed or worried about this, because these are very rare occurrences and they occurred in very frail patients with very serious disease. We are not asking for doctors to continue with vaccination, but to carry out extra evaluation of very sick people whose underlying condition might be aggravated by it. This evaluation includes discussing the risks and benefits of vaccination with the patient and their families to decide whether or not vaccination is the best course.

The BMJ article goes on to point out that the Paul Ehrlich Institute in Germany is also investigating 10 deaths shortly after COVID-19 vaccination, and closes with the following information:

In a statement, Pfizer said, “Pfizer and BioNTech are aware of reported deaths following administration of BNT162b2. We are working with NOMA to gather all the relevant information.

“Norwegian authorities have prioritised the immunisation of residents in nursing homes, most of whom are very elderly with underlying medical conditions and some of whom are terminally ill. NOMA confirm the number of incidents so far is not alarming, and in line with expectations. All reported deaths will be thoroughly evaluated by NOMA to determine if these incidents are related to the vaccine. The Norwegian government will also consider adjusting their vaccination instructions to take the patients’ health into more consideration.

“Our immediate thoughts are with the bereaved families.”

Vaccine Hesitancy is Growing Among Healthcare Workers: Vaccine hesitancy is growing all over the globe, one of the latest examples comes from Riverside County, California. It has a population of approximately 2.4 million, and about 50 percent of healthcare workers in the county are refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine despite the fact that they have top priority and access to it.  At Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Mission Hills, one in five frontline nurses and doctors have declined the shot. Roughly 20% to 40% of L.A. County’s frontline workers who were offered the vaccine did the same, according to county public health officials. You can read more about that story here.

Vaccine hesitancy among physicians and academics is nothing new. To illustrate this I often point to a conference held at the end of 2019 put on by the World Health Organization (WHO). At the conference, Dr. Heidi Larson a Professor of Anthropology and the Risk and Decision Scientist Director at the Vaccine Confidence Project Emphasized this point, having  stated,

The other thing that’s a trend, and an issue, is not just confidence in providers but confidence of health care providers. We have a very wobbly health professional frontline that is starting to question vaccines and the safety of vaccines. That’s a huge problem, because to this day any study I’ve seen…still, the most trusted person on any study I’ve seen globally is the health care provider.

A study published in the journal EbioMedicine  as far back as 2013 outlines this point, among many others.

Pfizer’s Questionable History:  Losing faith in “big pharma” does not come without good reason. For example, in 2010 Robert G. Evans, PhD, Centre for Health Services and Policy Research Emeritus Professor, Vancouver School of Economics, UBC, published a paper that’s accessible in PubMed titled “Tough on Crime? Pfizer and the CIHR.”

In it, he outlines the fact that,

Pfizer has been a “habitual offender,” persistently engaging in illegal and corrupt marketing practices, bribing physicians and suppressing adverse trial results. Since 2002 the company and its subsidiaries have been assessed $3 billion in criminal convictions, civil penalties and jury awards. The 2.3-billion settlement…set a new record for both criminal fines and total penalties. A link with Pfizer might well advance the commercialization of Canadian research.

Suppressing clinical trial results is something I’ve come across multiple times with several different medicines. Five years ago I wrote about how big pharma did not share adverse reactions people had and harmful results from their clinical trials for commonly used antidepressant drugs.

Even scientists from within federal these health regulatory agencies have been sounding the alarm. For example, a few years ago more than a dozen scientists from within the CDC put out an anonymous public statement detailing the influence corporations have on government policies. They were referred to as the  Spider Papers.

The Takeaway: Given the fact that everything is not black and white, especially when it comes to vaccine safety, do we really want to give government health agencies and/or private institutions the right to enforce mandatory vaccination requirements when their efficacy have been called into question? Should people have the freedom of choice? It’s a subject that has many people polarized in their beliefs, but at the end of the day the sharing of information, opinion and evidence should not be shut down, discouraged, ridiculed or censored.

In a day and age where more people are starting to see our planet in a completely different light, one which has more and more questioning the human experience and why we live the way we do it seems the ‘crack down’ on free thought gets tighter and tighter. Do we really want to live in a world where we lose the right to choose what we do with our own body, or one where certain rights and freedoms are taken away if we don’t comply? The next question is, what do we do about it? Those who are in a position to enforce these measures must, it seems, have a shift in consciousness and refuse to implement them. There doesn’t seem to be a clear cut answer, but there is no doubt that we are currently going through that possible process, we are living in it.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading

Alternative News

Elizondo, Mellon & Justice Are Officially Leaving To The Stars Academy

Avatar

Published

on

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    UFO/UAP research organization To The Stars Academy officially announces the departure of COO Steve Justice, Director of Special Programs Luis Elizondo and Advisor Chris Mellon.

  • Reflect On:

    With so much mainstream attention on the UFO subject right now, many are wondering whether the public is being told the truth, or a sanitized version of it. Will we see new and groundbreaking material soon from these 3 key voices?

Since 2017, To The Stars Academy (TTSA) has been in the news in relation to groundbreaking events in mainstream UFO/UAP culture. You likely remember TTSA’s release of video footage showing UFOs making incredible maneuvers in the sky. The video was taken by a US Navy pilot while tracking and following the object for as long as possible. The story was heavily covered in mainstream and alternative media after the New York Times broke the story.

Since that day, TTSA has been in the limelight when it comes to the mainstream discussion of UFO disclosure. But with that success also came doubt and controversy. Why was the media suddenly interested in a topic it had ridiculed for so long? Credible evidence has been available for decades, so why is it only be acknowledged now? Why is TTSA getting so much attention when many other credible organizations, people, and whistleblowers were saying the same thing for years?

This skepticism amongst long time UFO researchers is fair, as these are good questions that don’t have clear or obvious answers. Further, TTSA was comprised of many former government and intelligence agency employees, former operations office at the CIA Jim Semivan, former CIA employee Dr. Nor Kahn, former Pentagon employee Lue Elizondo, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Christopher Mellon. With a roster like that, those with skeptical minds in a space shrouded by secrecy and deception would naturally question whether these ex-government employees are now in favor of disclosing government secrets, or whether they are part of a decade long cover-up program. This is healthy skepticism, it no no way means that these people are part of some sort of agenda to shape the perception of the masses when it comes to this phenomenon, but it’s an important discussion to have.

All that said, how can one deny the value TTSA has brought to this discussion? They have created massive awareness around UFOs/UAPs within the masses with their work, and this has resulted in a greater audience willing to explore this important subject credibly. As I have often said, just because there may exist an agenda to manipulate public perception on a subject, it doesn’t mean it won’t backfire and instead create massive positive public awareness.

Years ago we wrote an open letter to comedian and podcast host Joe Rogan about UFOs, as during that time he was denying the legitimacy of the subject and it was clear he had not truly looked into it. That piece was viewed hundreds of thousands of times, perhaps it got on his radar, perhaps it didn’t. But look now, with TTSA’s work and a change in the mainstream conversation, Joe Rogan has significantly changed his tune about the UFO phenomenon and is sharing that open-mindedness with millions of his podcast listeners. All this said, it’s hard to say TTSA has done anything but good.

But I’ll add one more small piece to this, people have been encouraged others to keep an open mind about TTSA’s intentions as some believe their focus is on a potential “ET threat narrative,” and this is believed to be part of a greater governmental agenda – even if that means by focusing on a threat it will bring haste to political action. You can hear these perspectives from researchers like Dr. Steven Greer and US constitutional lawyer Daniel Sheehan, both of who I shared screen time with in Dr. Greer’s latest film Close Encounters of The 5th Kind.

Nonetheless, the roster and goals at TTSA are now changing.

In a statement, TTSA informs the public:

TTSA now enters its natural evolution as a company as we adapt to a new global landscape with new opportunities and priorities.  TTSA looks to build on the momentum of business initiatives where we are seeing success and which are increasingly likely to yield shareholder value.  Data collection, artificial intelligence and entertainment opportunities remain our mainstays as key opportunities going forward and we are excited to announce more soon.

As we enter this new phase, inevitable changes will come with it, including a change in personnel.

We are incredibly grateful for the founding team members who helped establish TTSA, including COO Steve Justice, Director of Special Programs Luis Elizondo and Advisor Chris Mellon, who are moving on to focus on other endeavors, as TTSA continues to develop the new chapter in its evolution.

“This change does not alter the relationship TTSA and I have established or our collective dedication to the mission,” said Luis Elizondo. “We will continue to collaborate and strengthen our partnerships as we face new priorities and opportunities in the wake of COVID-19.”

TTSA thanks Steve, Luis and Chris for their meaningful contribution to the establishment of TTSA and an extraordinary three years. We wish them all the best in their future undertakings.

The Takeaway

It’s important to note that just because your favorite UFO researcher might have an opinion about a key aspect of this discussion, it may not be accurate or true. In the 12 years our team has been researching the UFO and extraterrestrial phenomenon, it’s clear that there is not much of whole-hearted collaboration, and there is a great deal of infighting and differing opinions about what is going on. That said, it’s important to keep an open mind, follow the evidence, listen to multiple sources, and dig deep to uncover what is available. I truly believe true disclosure has happened in many ways already, after we now have full disclosure from governments that UFOs exist. The question now is who’s manning them? We know much more about that question already, and don’t need the government to tell us so. This is why I feel full disclosure will happen primarily through the people – not necessarily a slow, sanitized, drip from the government.

The information released by TTSA is merely the tip of a massive iceberg, an iceberg that we already know a lot more about than what has been disclosed to the public. Here’s to hoping that Elizondo, Mellon, and Justice plan to focus on bringing that information to the masses in a timely fashion – my hunch is they already know a lot more than they have shared over the last 3 years.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading

Alternative News

New Stanford Study Claims Lockdowns Are Not Effective To Stop Spread of COVID

Avatar

Published

on

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Four professors from Stanford School of Medicine have published a paper showing that lockdowns, stay at home orders and business closures are not an effective tool for stopping the spread of COVID. There are many studies claiming the same.

  • Reflect On:

    Why is information, science and evidence that opposes recommendations that governments are making sometimes ridiculed, censored, and largely unacknowledged? Why is scientific debate being discouraged?

Over the last few months, I have seen academic articles and op-eds by professors retracted or labeled “fake news” by social media platforms. Often, no explanation is provided. I am concerned about this heavy-handedness and, at times, outright censorship. – Vinay Prasad, MD, MPH (source)

What Happened: A study published by four medical professors from Stanford University has failed to find evidence supporting the use of what they call “Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions” (NPIs) like lockdowns, social-distancing, business closures and stay at home orders. According to the study, these measures have not been sufficient and are not sufficient to stop the spread of COVID and therefore are not necessary to combat the spread of the virus. Although they do mention that “the data cannot fully exclude the possibility of some benefits” they mention that “even if they exist, these benefits may not match the numerous harms of these aggressive measures.”

The authors used England, France, Germany, Iran, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, South Korea, Sweden and the United States for the study. They found “No clear, significant, beneficial” effects of the methods being implemented (lockdowns, business closures, stay at home orders etc) to combat COVID case growth in any country.

You can access the full study here for a deeper discussion/analysis.

This Isn’t The Only Study: The recently published study by the Stanford professors is not the first. There are many examples.

A country level analysis measuring the impact of government actions, country preparedness and socioeconomic factors on COVID-19 mortality and related health outcomes” by Rabail Chaudhry, George Dranitsaris, Talha Mubashir, Justyna Bartoszko, Sheila Riazi. EClinicalMedicine 25 (2020) 100464. “[F]ull lockdowns and wide-spread COVID-19 testing were not associated with reductions in the number of critical cases or overall mortality.”

Was Germany’s Corona Lockdown Necessary?” by Christof Kuhbandner, Stefan Homburg, Harald Walach, Stefan Hockertz. Advance: Sage Preprint, June 23, 2020. “Official data from Germany’s RKI agency suggest strongly that the spread of the coronavirus in Germany receded autonomously, before any interventions became effective. Several reasons for such an autonomous decline have been suggested. One is that differences in host susceptibility and behavior can result in herd immunity at a relatively low prevalence level. Accounting for individual variation in susceptibility or exposure to the coronavirus yields a maximum of 17% to 20% of the population that needs to be infected to reach herd immunity, an estimate that is empirically supported by the cohort of the Diamond Princess cruise ship. Another reason is that seasonality may also play an important role in dissipation.”

Comment on Flaxman et al. (2020): The illusory effects of non-pharmaceutical interventions on COVID-19 in Europe” by Stefan Homburg and Christof Kuhbandner. June 17, 2020. Advance, Sage Pre-Print. “In a recent article, Flaxman et al. allege that non-pharmaceutical interventions imposed by 11 European countries saved millions of lives. We show that their methods involve circular reasoning. The purported effects are pure artefacts, which contradict the data. Moreover, we demonstrate that the United Kingdom’s lockdown was both superfluous and ineffective.”

Did COVID-19 infections decline before UK lockdown? by Simon N. Wood. Cornell University pre-print, August 8, 2020. “A Bayesian inverse problem approach applied to UK data on COVID-19 deaths and the disease duration distribution suggests that infections were in decline before full UK lockdown (24 March 2020), and that infections in Sweden started to decline only a day or two later. An analysis of UK data using the model of Flaxman et al. (2020, Nature 584) gives the same result under relaxation of its prior assumptions on R.”

 Professor Ben Israel’s Analysis of virus transmission. April 16, 2020. “Some may claim that the decline in the number of additional patients every day is a result of the tight lockdown imposed by the government and health authorities. Examining the data of different countries around the world casts a heavy question mark on the above statement. It turns out that a similar pattern – rapid increase in infections that reaches a peak in the sixth week and declines from the eighth week – is common to all countries in which the disease was discovered, regardless of their response policies: some imposed a severe and immediate lockdown that included not only ‘social distancing’ and banning crowding, but also shutout of economy (like Israel); some ‘ignored’ the infection and continued almost a normal life (such as Taiwan, Korea or Sweden), and some initially adopted a lenient policy but soon reversed to a complete lockdown (such as Italy or the State of New York). Nonetheless, the data shows similar time constants amongst all these countries in regard to the initial rapid growth and the decline of the disease.”

Impact of non-pharmaceutical interventions against COVID-19 in Europe: a quasi-experimental study” by Paul Raymond Hunter, Felipe Colon-Gonzalez, Julii Suzanne Brainard, Steve Rushton. MedRxiv Pre-print May 1, 2020. “The current epidemic of COVID-19 is unparalleled in recent history as are the social distancing interventions that have led to a significant halt on the economic and social life of so many countries. However, there is very little empirical evidence about which social distancing measures have the most impact… From both sets of modelling, we found that closure of education facilities, prohibiting mass gatherings and closure of some non-essential businesses were associated with reduced incidence whereas stay at home orders and closure of all non-businesses was not associated with any independent additional impact.”

Full lockdown policies in Western Europe countries have no evident impacts on the COVID-19 epidemic” by Thomas Meunier. MedRxiv Pre-print May 1, 2020. “This phenomenological study assesses the impacts of full lockdown strategies applied in Italy, France, Spain and United Kingdom, on the slowdown of the 2020 COVID-19 outbreak. Comparing the trajectory of the epidemic before and after the lockdown, we find no evidence of any discontinuity in the growth rate, doubling time, and reproduction number trends. Extrapolating pre-lockdown growth rate trends, we provide estimates of the death toll in the absence of any lockdown policies, and show that these strategies might not have saved any life in western Europe. We also show that neighboring countries applying less restrictive social distancing measures (as opposed to police-enforced home containment) experience a very similar time evolution of the epidemic.”

Lockdowns and Closures vs COVID – 19: COVID Wins” by Surjit S Bhalla, executive director for India of the International Monetary Fund. “For the first time in human history, lockdowns were used as a strategy to counter the virus. While conventional wisdom, to date, has been that lockdowns were successful (ranging from mild to spectacular) we find not one piece of evidence supporting this claim.”

There are dozens upon dozens of examples of published research showing and claiming that lockdown and other non-pharmacological methods for combating COVID have no benefit whatsoever on reducing the spread of the virus, so why are we being forced into these measures?

Below is a video of Dr. Martin Kulldorff, professor of medicine at Harvard University, a biostatistician, and epidemiologist, Dr. Sunetra Gupta, professor at Oxford University, an epidemiologist with expertise in immunology, and Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, professor at Stanford University Medical School, a physician and epidemiologist (also one of the authors of the study mentioned at the beginning of this article)  where the initiators of the declaration. Together, they created The Great Barrington Declaration. The declaration has an impressive list co-signers, and has also now been signed by more than 50,000 doctors and scientists and more than 700,000 concerned citizens, which is pretty impressive given the fact that it’s received no attention from mainstream media.  Follow their twitter account here.

The declaration explains why these health professionals and scientists strongly oppose lockdown measures, and also brings up the topic of herd immunity. In the video below they explain their belief of why there should be a different response to the pandemic.

The Consequences of Lockdown: The consequences of lockdown are many. And we are doing so for a virus with a 99.95 percent survival rate for people under the age of 70, and a 95 percent survival rate for people over the age of 70.

In Ontario, Canada, a member of Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s caucus is speaking out against his own government’s policies and calling for an end to the province-wide pandemic lockdown.“The lockdown isn’t working,” writes York Centre Progressive Conservative MPP Roman Baber in a letter to Ford.  “It’s causing an avalanche of suicides, overdoses, bankruptcies, divorces and takes an immense toll on our children. Dozens of leading doctors implored you to end the lockdowns.” (source)

A letter to the editor published in the New England Journal of Medicine titled “Open Schools, Covid-19, and Child and Teacher Morbidity in Sweden” has found that “Despite Sweden’s having kept schools and preschools open, we found a low incidence of severe Covid-19 among schoolchildren and children of preschool age during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic…No child with Covid-19 died…Among the 1,951,905 million children who were 1 to 16 years of age, 15 children had Covid-19, MIS-C, or both conditions and were admitted to an ICU, which is equal to 1 child in 130,000.”

Many experts  who are opposing lockdowns are not advocating for no measures to be taken, instead many of them believe we don’t have to shut down businesses and keep people inside to protect the vulnerable. They advocate for a more focused type of protection, especially in light of all the harms that lockdown measures seem to be creating.

These harms were pondered early on in the pandemic, a report published in the British Medical Journal titled Covid-19: “Staggering number” of extra deaths in community is not explained by covid-19″  has suggested that quarantine measures in the United Kingdom as a result of the new coronavirus may have already killed more UK seniors than the coronavirus has during the months of April and May .

response by Professor David Paton, Professor of Economics at the University of Nottingham and Professor Ellen Townsend, a Professor of Psychology at the University of Nottingham School of Medicine, to an article  published in the the BMJ in November titled “Screening the healthy population for covid-19 is of unknown value, but is being introduced worldwide” states,

Taken together, the data are clear both that national lockdowns are not a necessary condition for Covid-19 infections to decrease and that the Prime Minister was incorrect to suggest to MPs that infections were increasing rapidly in England prior to lockdown and that without national measures, the NHS would be overwhelmed…Lockdowns have never previously been used in response to a pandemic. They have significant and serious consequences for health (including mental health), livelihoods and the economy. Around 21,000 excess deaths during the first UK lockdown were not Covid-19 deaths. These are people who would have lived had there not been a lockdown.

It is well established that the first lockdown had an enormously negative effect on mental health in young people as compared to adults. The more we lockdown, the more we risk the mental health of young people, the greater the likelihood the economy will be destroyed, the greater the ultimate impact on our future health and mental health. Sadly, we know that global economic recession is associated with increased poor mental health and suicide rates.

According to a recent study published in Pediatrics, lockdown and social distancing measures are strongly correlated with an increase in suicidal thoughts, attempts and behaviour.

According to Dr. John Lee, a former Professor of Pathology and NHS consultant pathologist,

Lockdowns cannot eradicate the disease or protect the public…They lead to only economic meltdown, social despair and direct harms to health from other causes…Scientifically, medically and morally lockdowns have no justification in dealing with Covid.

Bhattacharya, MD, PhD wrote an article  for The Hill titled “Facts, not fear, will stop the pandemic.” In that points out a number of facts regarding the implications of lockdown measures.

The media have paid scant attention to the enormous medical and psychological harms from the lockdowns in use to slow the pandemic. Despite the enormous collateral damage lockdowns have caused, EnglandFrance, Germany, Spain and other European countries are all intensifying their lockdowns once again.

By lockdowns, we mean the all-too-familiar shuttered schools and universities, closed playgrounds and parks, silent churches and bankrupt stores and businesses that have become emblematic of American civic life these past months. The relative dearth of reporting on the harms caused by lockdowns is odd, since lives lost from lockdown are no less important than lives lost from COVID infection. But they’ve received much less media attention.

The harms from lockdown have been catastrophic. Consider the psychological harm. Reader, since you’re reading this in lockdown, you can undoubtedly relate to the isolation and loneliness that these policies can cause by shutting down typical channels for social interaction. In June, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that one in four young adults had seriously considered suicide. Opioid and other drug related deaths are on a sharp and unsurprising upswing.

The burden of these policies falls disproportionately on some of the most vulnerable. For example, isolation led to a 20 percent increase in dementia-related deaths among our elderly population. Moreover, retrospective analysis of the lockdown in the United States shows that patients skipped cancer screenings, childhood immunizationsdiabetes management visits and even treatment for heart attacks.

Internationally, the lockdowns have placed 130 million people on the brink of starvation, 80 million children at risk for diphtheria, measles and polio, and 1.8 million patients at risk of death from tuberculosis. The lockdowns in developed countries have devastated the poor in poor countries. The World Economic Forum estimates that the lockdowns will cause an additional 150 million people to fall into extreme poverty, 125 times as many people as have died from COVID.

Other Strange Happenings: A lot of people are also raising concerns about COVID deaths being marked as COVID when they’re not really a result of COVID. You can read more about that, in detail here.

Concerns have also been raised with regards to PCR testing, you can read more about that in detail here.

Furthermore corruption and conflicts of interest also seem to be a big concern, you can read more about that in detail here.

The Takeaway: Never before have we seen actions taken by Western governments come under such scrutiny from so many people. COVID has really been a catalyst for more people to question what we are doing here on planet Earth, why we live the way we do and why we give so much power to governments that may not have the ability to make the best decisions for us due to a number of different factors.

The suppression and muzzling of scientists, journalists, doctors and people during this pandemic for simply providing information, evidence and opinions that oppose mainstream rhetoric has also forced many more people to question what’s happening here. The shutdown of open scientific debate is quite concerning, and social media platforms have completely banned the accounts of what seems to be thousands of health professionals, journalists and independent media outlets while someone like Dr. Anthony Fauci is given instant virality on television when expressing his views.

Why is it that we fail to have proper conversations about controversial topics and viewpoints? Why do we have to shut them down, ridicule them and ignore them? What’s going on here? Is there a battle to control the perception of the masses when it comes to not only this pandemic, but other topics as well? Why do we continue to listen to and rely on entities that don’t really have our best interests at hand? Is the political realm really a representation of truth? Can it provide us with the answers and advice we are looking for and ones that are actually good for us? Should we give governments such power where they can shut down the planet at will when so many people across the globe disagree? Should people have the freedom to do as they please? Should business closures, isolation, and stay at home orders simply be shifted to recommendations? Should people be able to choose what measures they wish to take and respect the decisions of others who oppose them? When everything is not so black and white as sometimes it is made out to be, I believe freedom of choice should always remain, what do you think? I don’t have the answers, but I do know that asking questions and having discussions is very important.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading
advertisement - learn more
advertisement - learn more

Video

Due to censorship, please join us on Telegram

We post important content to Telegram daily so we don't have to rely on Facebook.

You have Successfully Subscribed!