Volume 12, Number 3 – 9/15/09

Volume 12, Number 3 – 9/15/09PUBLICATION ANNOUNCEMENT


Former senator and presidential candidate Gary Hart has said “Even for those of us who have known John Petersen over the years, his insights into our revolutionary age still are enlightening, and often astonishing. As the Paul Revere of the early 21st century, his message is: The Future is Here! He is a visionary with an ethical dimension and a too little known national asset. This deceptively short essay is a primer for an explosive future that is already upon us. It should be required reading for the next President.”


PUNCTUATIONS
by John L. Petersen

“Fear Disappears from the Market” was the headline of the news article I received recently from friend Paul Saffo. “Not only does the market continue to rally, but the VIX, sometimes called the fear index, is at the lows of the year.” It seems a lot of people think the problems are past.

I don’t think so. Seems to me that we haven’t even begun to experience the really big change and I’ll tell you why.

First of all, the financial issues are systemic – they are a product of the structure of the system and they are intrinsically not sustainable. If you really want to understand this, go to Chris Martenson’s website and watch his free Crash Course – www.chrismartenson.com. As Chris says, the system will continue going until it crashes. The crash is inevitable, it is just unknown exactly when it is going to happen.

This is no different conceptually than knowing that if you overdraw your checking account at some point the bank is going to bounce your checks. It’s that predictable. If you’re open to this possibility, the indicators abound. If you’re not – if you believe the same analysts who didn’t anticipate the last deep dive – then you probably are going to be surprised . . . . again.

The underlying indicators (the health of banks, amount of unemployment, reports of Fed buying back Treasury Bonds because there are not enough foreign buyers, et al.) alone are enough to convince me that we haven’t seen the last of this economic disruption – without even considering the fact that global oil production has been flat for three years and there are indications that more climate instability is on the way. Throw in a little swine flu and it is hard to come to the conclusion that the roller coaster ride is over already. On the plus side, discovery and development in the energy and technology sectors are clearly exponential, carrying with them the distinct possibility of threatening the continuity of some of the largest institutions in the world.

But the bigger, far more interesting question is whether this confluence of very visible events is part of some larger, much more profound change that will not return us to the status quo ante.

This is not some arcane, academic type of question. There are a large number of compelling indicators that suggest that this is the case. In my book, A Vision for 2012, I tell about how the cycles of American social history predict that a major disruption of the magnitude of the Civil War or the Great Depression is now due. The recession we are now experiencing doesn’t even begin to qualify as the defining moment that has always shown up at this point in the repeating sequence that has held true since the landing at Jamestown.

Elliot Wave theorists say that there is an extraordinary confluence of historical waves showing up now that presages huge change. Assessments of historical cycles of “novelty” predict big shifts are coming. Many indigenous prophets and shamans say the big change that has been prophesied for centuries is now upon us. And then, if you want to really reach out in unconventional space there are many psychics and channels who point to October or some time later (but soon) for a very significant disruption.

Why even mention psychics and channels? Well, we are living in a time of unprecedented, exponential change. There is no question about this in terms of population growth, species depletion, science discoveries, natural resource usage, technological invention, and information and knowledge growth (among many other metrics). The size and metabolism of the system in which we live is getting far larger and more complex at such extraordinary rates that it is now beyond human ability to understand it. (In the financial arena alone, the honest experts will tell you that at a fundamental level they don’t know exactly what they are doing in their manipulations of the national and global system because it is too complex to understand.)

So we have a system that is very rapidly growing and expanding in ways for which there is clearly no precedent. We do not have history or experience (or modeling) that will tell us how this platform that supports us all will behave and it is obvious that potential failure modes (because of size and interdependence) are far larger than ever before. There is far more risk.

I’d argue that in a situation like this, necessity should be the mother of invention – we need to be looking at every new and old (and unconventional) source and capability that we can find that might give us a fix on what might be on our horizon because if it changes in a hurry, the effects of the surprise will be exacerbated because we didn’t see it coming and didn’t do anything defensive. We also know from formerly highly classified programs that some of these intuitives have generated extraordinary and accurate intelligence for the U.S and Soviet governments in the past, i.e. it works. If it works, we should use it — always being diligent about quality control.

What do these unconventional sources say? They’re pretty universal in describing an epochal shift that could be described as nothing less than the largest punctuation in evolution that our species has ever experienced – extraordinary change in a very short period of time. Think about what that might mean.

The issue at hand? How do you alert people to a looming potentiality that is so large that no one alive has any reasonable means of visualizing it? How do you get people to begin to consider something that could be essentially unfathomable in any conventional terms? Some friends have suggested that a more “balanced” approach to reporting would be in order here. To know that an event of this magnitude could be in the works and to pull your punches in the face of it would certainly lack integrity and set people up for failure, so that is not an option. Somehow the size and significance must be made clear to those who are willing to listen, so that they can begin to do the things that need to be done to ready themselves for when and if the shift comes.

The problem is complicated by the fact that specific futures are not predictable. There are too many independent actors who are influencing the process that you can be assured that every attempt possible will be made to put off a collapse or disruption as long as possible . . . which seems in fact to be happening. A number of sources were suggesting early in the year that a very big disruption was due in August/September. As we got closer, the tune started to change: things were slipping – now it looked like September/October. Then just weeks ago, some sources said that it was smoothing out . . . for now (all of that money being pumped into the system has to have some effect, one would think). But there are a bunch that still don’t see smooth sailing for many weeks. Almost of the authoritative ones say the break is inevitable; it’s just not clear exactly when it will happen. What I can say is that there are still a significant number of credible voices that are reporting that it is close at hand.

All that said, we have nevertheless decided that in addition to highlighting the indicators that point to the coming shift, we’ll begin to actively look for articles that suggest ways to actively deal with it. That’s a bit different from the “weather reporter” role I’ve always seen as the core function of a futurist. Prescription is certainly personalized, and I wouldn’t presume to know and understand anyone’s situation other than my own, but we’ll try to find some general suggestions that may be helpful. That will not absolve you from doing your own research and building your own plan. The web, after all, is loaded with stuff on this subject, and I suspect that you know how to use Google.

Happy hunting!


FUTURE FACTS – FROM THINK LINKS

DID YOU KNOW THAT…

An emerging field known as sentiment analysis is taking shape around one of the computer world’s unexplored frontiers: translating the vagaries of human emotion into hard data.A robot have been developed that will self assemble inside the body, after the patient has swallowed up to 15 separate parts, and then aid the surgeon to carry out procedures.
INSTITUTIONAL CHANGE

On the Digital Frontline of Policing
Mining the Web for Feelings, Not Facts


On the Digital Frontline of Policing – (BBC News – September 9, 2009)
A new wave of policing increasingly relies on technology and immediate access to digital information. Analysts at the NYPD Real Time Crime Center (RTCC) use a powerful search engine to search files across an undisclosed number of local, national and even international government and law enforcement databases. Public and internal police records, parking infractions, newly digitized citations, mug shots, photos of evidence, and the main open-source database – the internet – can be queried for intelligence. Police officers at the scene submit evidence data to the RTCC via their laptops. In turn the centre performs “link analysis”, feeding back to the officers new leads for the investigation before they leave the crime scene. Web-like illustrations can be composed on multi-screens linking crime elements: Google maps with flagged locations, photos of witnesses, and weapons found at the scene.

Mining the Web for Feelings, Not Facts – (New York Times – August 24, 2009)
The rise of blogs and social networks has fueled a bull market in personal opinion: reviews, ratings, recommendations and other forms of online expression. For computer scientists, this fast-growing mountain of data is opening a tantalizing window onto the collective consciousness of Internet users. An emerging field known as sentiment analysis is taking shape around one of the computer world’s unexplored frontiers: translating the vagaries of human emotion into hard data.


NEW REALITIES

Memristor Minds: The Future of Artificial Intelligence
A Skull That Rewrites the History of Man


Memristor Minds: The Future of Artificial Intelligence – (New Scientist – July 8, 2009)
Leon Chua, an electronics engineer with a penchant for mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, was fascinated by the fact that electronics had no rigorous mathematical foundation. So like any diligent scientist, he set about trying to derive one. And he found something missing: a fourth basic circuit element besides the standard trio of resistor, capacitor and inductor. Chua dubbed it the “memristor”. The only problem was that as far as Chua or anyone else could see, memristors did not actually exist. Except that they do. Within the past couple of years, memristors have morphed from obscure jargon into one of the hottest properties in physics. They’ve not only been made, but their unique capabilities might revolutionize consumer electronics. More than that, though, along with completing the jigsaw of electronics, they might solve the puzzle of how nature makes that most delicate and powerful of computers – the brain.

A Skull That Rewrites the History of Man – (Independent – September 9, 2009)
The conventional view of human evolution and how early man colonised the world has been thrown into doubt by a series of stunning palaeontological discoveries suggesting that Africa was not the sole cradle of humankind. Scientists have found a handful of ancient human skulls at an archaeological site two hours from the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, that suggest a Eurasian chapter in the long evolutionary story of man. What has excited the researchers is the discovery that these early humans are far more primitive-looking than the Homo erectus humans that were, until now, believed to be the first people to migrate out of Africa about a million years ago.


GENETICS/HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Canadian Scientist Aims to Turn Chickens into Dinosaurs
Infections Speed Memory Loss
Artificial Life Will Be Created Within Months
Reverse Aging: Easier Than You Think
Stem Cells Link to Prostate Cancer


Canadian Scientist Aims to Turn Chickens into Dinosaurs – (PhysOrg – September 13, 2009)
Hans Larsson, the Canada Research Chair in Macro Evolution at Montreal’s McGill University, said he aims to develop dinosaur traits that disappeared millions of years ago in birds. Larsson believes by flipping certain genetic levers during a chicken embryo’s development, he can reproduce the dinosaur anatomy. Though still in its infancy, the research could eventually lead to hatching live prehistoric animals, but Larsson said there are no plans for that now, for ethical and practical reasons — a dinosaur hatchery is “too large an enterprise.”

Infections Speed Memory Loss – (BBC News – September 7, 2009)
Infections outside the brain may speed memory decline in Alzheimer’s disease. In a study of 222 elderly people with Alzheimer’s UK researchers found that getting infections in places like the chest or urinary tract could double memory loss. The Southampton University researchers think this leads to higher levels of an inflammatory protein called tumor necrosis factor (TNF) in the blood. Subjects with one or more acute systemic inflammation events (SIEs) during the six months follow-up had two times the rate of cognitive decline from their baseline score at the start of the study compared with those who had no SIE. And those patients who had high baseline levels of TNF and then suffered an SIE over the following six months had a 10 fold increase in the rate of cognitive decline compared to those who were SIE free.

Artificial Life Will Be Created Within Months – (Daily Mail – August 22, 2009)
Dr. Craig Venter – one of the world’s most famous and controversial biologists – said his U.S. researchers have overcome one of the last big hurdles to making a synthetic organism. The first artificial lifeform is likely to be a simple man-made bacterium that proves that the technology can work. But it will be followed by more complex bacteria that turn coal into cleaner natural gas, or algae that can soak up carbon dioxide and convert it into fuels.

Reverse Aging: Easier Than You Think – (AlterNet – August 26, 2009)
Three decades ago, Harvard University psychologist Ellen Langer conducted a landmark experiment that suggested reverse aging needn’t be relegated to the realm of science fiction. Her revealing study, the many follow-ups it spawned and the implications of their findings are the subject of her fascinating new book Counterclockwise: Mindful Health and the Power of Possibility. The fountain of youth may in fact be the flood of chemicals in our brain that processes both internal and external messages about old age and dutifully passes them on to our joints, blood vessels and vital organs. Perhaps it’s time to start noticing these cerebral downloads and disregard the disempowering ones.

Stem Cells Link to Prostate Cancer – (BBC News – September 10, 2009)
A newly identified type of stem cell may cause some cases of prostate cancer, research on mice suggests. The cells, found among those which line the inner cavity of the prostate gland, can produce copies of themselves, and other, more mature cell types. But researchers showed that when the cells were deliberately mutated by switching off a tumor suppressor gene they rapidly formed tumors. The newly identified cells – a type of luminal epithelial stem cell – do not rely on androgens, the male sex hormones that control prostate growth, to thrive. This may give a clue as to why prostate cancer often becomes resistant to treatments designed to regulate these androgens in the later stages of the disease.


DISCOVERIES ENABLED BY NEW TECHNOLOGY

Oops, Missed That Fossil Iridescence
Most Ancient Colored Twine Found


Oops, Missed That Fossil Iridescence – (Science News – August 28, 2009)
Birds shimmered at least 40 million years before custom car paints, according to a new look at old fossils. Exquisitely preserved bits of feathers from Germany’s Messel Oil Shale deposits near Darmstadt bear swaths of oblong lumps some 1 to 1.5 micrometers wide. The nanostructures provide the first fossil evidence of bird iridescence, Jakob Vinther of Yale University and his colleagues report. Using scanning electron microscopy, the researchers examined bits of the feathers and decided that the lumps came from melanosomes, which are structures within cells that contribute to coloring. The arrangement of the fossil feather lumps shows more organization than bacteria could manage, the team reports. And the lumps also resemble melanosome arrays that create iridescent sheens on birds such as starlings.

Most Ancient Colored Twine Found – (BBC News – September 10, 2009)
A Georgian cave has yielded what scientists say are the earliest examples of humans making cords. The microscopic fibers, discovered accidentally while scientists were searching for pollen samples, are around 30,000 years old. Ancient humans probably used the plant fibers to carry tools, weave baskets or make garments. Some of the fibers are colored, and the scientists believe they were dyed using natural plant-derived pigments that would have been available to the Upper Paleolithic occupants of the cave.


ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES

World in Hot Water as Ocean Temperatures Rise
Mobile Phone Towers a Threat to Honey Bees


World in Hot Water as Ocean Temperatures Rise – (Fox News – August 20, 2009)
The National Climatic Data Center is reporting that the Earth’s water temperatures averaged 62.2 degrees Fahrenheit for the month of July, the highest average in the 130 year history of recorded water temperature. Due to this year’s powerful El Nino system, most of the world’s water (including the Gulf of Mexico, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Indian and Pacific Oceans) is all a few degrees above normal. Most worrisome is the Arctic Ocean, where temperatures hover 10 degrees above average.

Mobile Phone Towers a Threat to Honey Bees – (PhysOrg – August 31, 2009)
An experiment conducted in Kerala, India found that a sudden fall in the bee population was caused by towers installed across the state by cell phone companies to increase their network. The electromagnetic waves emitted by the towers crippled the “navigational skills” of the worker bees that go out to collect nectar from flowers to sustain bee colonies, said Dr. Sainuddin Pattazhy, who conducted the study. He found that when a cell phone was kept near a beehive, the worker bees were unable to return, leaving the hives with only the queens and eggs and resulting in the collapse of the colony within ten days.


INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

World Faces Hi-tech Crunch as China Eyes Ban on Rare Metal Exports – (Telegraph – August 24, 2009)
A draft report by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has called for a plan to prohibit or restrict exports of rare earth metals that play a vital role in cutting edge technology, from hybrid cars and catalytic converters, to superconductors, and precision-guided weapons. Some materials may be banned for export such as terbium, dysprosium, yttrium, thulium, and lutetium. Other metals such as neodymium, europium, cerium, and lanthanum will be restricted to a combined export quota of 35,000 tons a year, far below global needs. China mines over 95% of the world’s rare earth minerals, mostly in Inner Mongolia. The move to hoard reserves is the clearest sign to date that the global struggle for diminishing resources is shifting into a new phase. Countries may find it hard to obtain key materials at any price.


AUGMENTED/ ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

Robots to Revolutionize Surgery – (BBC News – September 9, 2009)
Within ten years some doctors and scientists are predicting that all surgery could be scarless. They say by using the natural orifices of the body and the body’s own natural scar the belly-button, it will be possible to insert robots into the body which can help perform every surgical procedure. Prototypes are already in existence that can crawl and swim inside the body taking pictures of difficult to access areas. There are particularly big hopes for Ares (Assembling Reconfigurable Endoluminal Surgical System), developed by Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy, with the support of the European Commission. This is a robot that will self assemble inside the body, after the patient has swallowed up to 15 separate parts, and then aid the surgeon to carry out procedures.


ENERGY DEVELOPMENTS

Floating Challenge for Off-shore Wind Turbine – (BBC News – September 8, 2009)
Norwegian energy giant StatoilHydro has constructed the world’s first full-scale floating wind turbine a couple of hours by catamaran from the oil town Stavanger, in the hope that one day vast wind farms could be constructed far offshore in water depths of up to 700 meters. The most interesting aspects of the turbine can be found in the depths of the sea, where a 100 meter long steel cylinder weighing 3,000 tons thanks to its ballast of water and rocks is anchored to the sea-bed with mooring lines. So-called slack anchors are used, allowing the structure to move with the seas. In spite of its apparent sturdiness, the 138 ton turbine is constantly moving.


GLOBAL EPIDEMIC

Russia Bracing for Spread of Dangerous TB Strains
Swine Flu in China Grim
Legal Immunity Set for Swine Flu Vaccine Makers
New Malaria Poses Human Threat


Russia Bracing for Spread of Dangerous TB Strains – (Washington Post – August 29, 2009)
Russia already has one of the highest rates of TB in the world. In parts of its Far East, the infection rate is three times what the World Health Organization considers epidemic levels. The government has made progress in recent years, with infection rates falling from a peak in 2000, but health officials are worried that those gains are now in jeopardy. Preliminary surveys have recorded an uptick in infections, which experts say could be the start of a surge fueled by declining living standards and deteriorating medical care resulting from the country’s worst economic slowdown in a decade. Russian officials and health specialists also blame the government’s failure to order supplies of key medicines last year, a blunder that could strengthen antibiotic-resistant forms of TB and threaten wealthier countries that have all but eradicated the disease.

Swine Flu in China Grim – (BBC News – September 8, 2009)
China’s health minister, Chen Zhu, says the nation is facing a grim situation as it tries to contain a rapid surge in swine flu. China is the first country in the world to use swine flu vaccines, after conducting successful clinical trials. Priority will be given to young students aged between five and 19, vulnerable groups such as those with respiratory diseases and pregnant women, and front-line public service personnel. But the vaccination program would start with those performing in the National Day Parade. There are at least 200,000 official participants, plus thousands of security police. They have been pushed to the front of the queue not just because it is a huge public event that carries national pride, but because all the top leaders and dignitaries will be in Beijing. The authorities cannot afford the political risk of any infection there. So there will not be much vaccine left for others on the priority list for now.

Legal Immunity Set for Swine Flu Vaccine Makers – (Mercola – August 20, 2009)
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sibelius has not only given immunity to the makers of Tamiflu and Relenza for injuries stemming from their use against swine flu, she has granted immunity to future swine flu vaccines and “any associated adjuvants”. The last time the government embarked on a major vaccine campaign against a new swine flu, thousands filed claims contending they suffered side effects from the shots. This time around, they will have no recourse.

New Malaria Poses Human Threat – (BBC News – September 10, 2009)
An emerging new form of malaria poses a deadly threat to humans, research has shown. It had been thought the parasite Plasmodium knowlesi infected only monkeys. But it has recently been found to be widespread in humans in Malaysia, and the latest study confirms that it can kill if not treated quickly. P. knowlesi has the ability to reproduce every 24 hours in the blood – meaning infection is potentially deadly. The researchers carried out tests on over 150 patients admitted to hospital in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo, between July 2006 and January 2008 with malaria infection. Around one in ten patients had developed complications, such as breathing difficulties and kidney problems, and two died.


TERRORISM, SECURITY AND THE FUTURE OF WARFARE

Underwater Laser Pops in Navy Ops
Showdown with Russia and China: U.S. Advances First
   Strike Global Missile Shield System


Underwater Laser Pops in Navy Ops – (BBC News – September 8, 2009)
US military researchers are developing a method for communication that uses lasers to make sound underwater. The approach focuses laser light to produce bubbles of steam that pop and create tiny, localized explosions. Controlling the rate of these explosions could provide a means of communication or even acoustic imaging. Researchers at the US Naval Research Laboratory say the approach could be used for air-to-submarine or fully underwater communication. One of the peculiar effects of high-intensity laser beams is that they can actually focus themselves when passing through some materials, like water. As the laser focuses, it rips electrons off water molecules, which then become superheated and create a powerful “pop” – of some 220 decibels.

Showdown with Russia and China: U.S. Advances First Strike Global Missile Shield System – (Global Research – August 19, 2009)
In the March/April 2006 edition of Foreign Affairs, a publication of the American Council on Foreign Relations, authors Lieber and Press contributed a study titled “The Rise of U.S. Nuclear Primacy” which stated that “It will probably soon be possible for the United States to destroy the long-range nuclear arsenals of Russia or China with a first strike.” That possibility is apparently nearing reality. On August 13th the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency and Boeing announced a test of their joint Airborne Laser missile defense system, which “successfully tracked and hit the mark earlier this month during its first in-flight test against an instrumented target missile.” Employing a modified Boeing 747-400F prototype airplane, the adapted commercial airliner use infrared sensors against a missile and “found, tracked, engaged and simulated an intercept with a missile seconds after liftoff.”


DEMOGRAPHICS

Elimination of Food Waste Could Lift 1Billion out of Hunger – (Guardian – September 8, 2009)
Food waste costs every household in the UK between £250 and £400 a year. Producing and distributing the 6.7m tons of edible food that goes uneaten and into waste in the UK also accounts for 18m tons of CO2. But Tom MacMillan, executive director of the Food Ethics Council, explained that the land and resources freed up by cutting food waste would likely be put to producing and consuming other things, such as growing more resource-intensive and expensive foods, bio-energy or textile crops. “Now is the moment all parties should be searching out ways to define prosperity that get away from runaway consumption. Until they succeed, chucking out less food won’t make our lifestyles more sustainable,” he said.


ECONOMIC INDICATORS

Secret of China’s Economy: The Government Owns
   the Banks Rather Than the Reverse
How China Cooks Its Books


Secret of China’s Economy: The Government Owns the Banks Rather Than the Reverse – (Global Research – August 18, 2009)
How can China’s stimulus plan be working so well, when ours is barely working at all? The answer may be simple: China has not let its banking system run roughshod over its productive economy. Chinese banks work for the people rather than the reverse according to Samah El-Shahat, a presenter for Al Jazeera English who holds a doctorate in economics from the University of London.

How China Cooks Its Books – (Foreign Policy – September 3, 2009)
It’s an open secret that China has doctored its economic and financial statistics since the time of Mao. Western media often portray Chinese book-cooking as part and parcel of a monolithic central government and omnipotent Beijing bureaucrats. But the process is much more complex. Local and provincial governmental officials are the ones who actually fiddle with the numbers. They retain considerable autonomy and power, and have a self-interested reason to manipulate economic statistics. This article examines the details.


FOR WHAT IT’S WORTH — articles off the beaten track which may – or may not – have predictive value.

World’s Most Extreme Water Slide
South African Pigeon Faster than Broadband


World’s Most Extreme Water Slide – (You Tube – August 12, 2009)
Check out what some of the best of advertising looks like now. This is a pretty cool example of what are called “viral” ads. “But this doesn’t look like an ad. Are you sure this is an ad?” Yes. Go to www.megawoosh.com and see who paid for this commercial.

South African Pigeon Faster than Broadband – (BBC News – September 10, 2009)
A Durban IT company pitted an 11-month-old bird armed with a 4GB memory stick against the ADSL service from the country’s biggest web firm, Telkom. Winston the pigeon took one hour and eight minutes to carry the data 60 miles – in the same time the ADSL had sent 4% of the data. Telkom said it was not responsible for the firm’s slow internet speeds. The idea for the race came when a member of staff at Unlimited IT complained about the speed of data transmission on ADSL. He said it would be faster by carrier pigeon. Winston took off from Unlimited IT’s call centre in the town of Howick to deliver the memory stick to the firm’s office in Durban. Hundreds of South Africans followed the race on Facebook and Twitter.


A FINAL QUOTE…

“If we can recognize that change and uncertainty are basic principles, we can greet the future and the transformation we are undergoing with the understanding that we do not know enough to be pessimistic.” — Hazel Henderson


A special thanks to: Bernard Calil, Ursula Freer, Vladimir Gagachev , Kurzweil AI, Diane Petersen, Schwartz Report, John Steiner, Gary Sycalik, Unknown Country, and all our other contributors. If you see something we should know about, do send it along – thanks.
[email protected]


CONTACT US

Edited by John L. Petersen
[email protected]
www.arlingtoninstitute.org

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Joni Patry is one of the most recognized teachers and Vedic astrologers in the world. She was a faculty member for ACVA, CVA and Instructor for online certification programs, published many books, journals and appeared on national and international television shows. As the keynote speaker for international conferences, she has a Japanese website, and teaches in Austria, Turkey and India. She has been awarded the 2015 Jyotish Star of the year and Dr B. V. Raman’s Janma Shatamanothsava Award Jyotisha Choodamani. She publishes an online astrological magazine, Astrologic Magazine http://astrologicmagazine.com/ and has an online University for certification, the University of Vedic Astrology. http://universityofvedicastrology.com

Regina Meredith

As Regina’s career progressed, so did her decades long exploration into the world of esoteric and hidden sciences – the reality beyond the 5 sense world. Guidance from these realms suggested it was time to bring her skill set to the world of video/televised media, so in late 2004, along with her husband Scott, she co-created ‘Conscious Media Network’, the first online network to feature full length original video interviews with authors and experts in the realms of the meta-physical, healing arts and alternative theories, opening up a world that many had experienced but never had access to on this scale.

Gaia: In 2012, Conscious Media Network merged with Gaiam TV in 2012, with Regina serving as anchor in their new media division on Open Minds and Healing Matrix. The demand for Regina’s unique perspective on a variety of subjects has drawn attention from conference organizers, moving her into the public as a presenter at conferences. In addition, Regina offers retreats and workshops for those who wish to ‘Dive Deep’ into a new understanding of the nature of reality and life itself. In this venue she shares her exclusive approach to meditation and regression work for a greater understanding of life’s challenges and identifying the innate joys.

Dr. Harold Puthoff

Although nominated for a Nobel Prize in physics for his breakthrough theoretical work on zero-point energy, Dr. Harold Puthoff, is most recognized for having been a co-founder of the secret US government “remote viewing” program that successfully used psychics to spy on the Soviet Union and China.

Now a principal and science advisor in a leading-edge effort by former senior military and intelligence managers to disclose the many decades of interest that the US has had in UFOs, he comes to Berkeley Springs on the 8th of February to give a TransitionTalk about his work in making sense out of the UFO phenomena.

Dr. Puthoff’s presentation will include a summary of his current activities with To The Stars Academy, which is on the forefront of bringing into the open formerly highly classified efforts by the government to track, record and understand the meaning of hundreds of encounters that the military has had with UFOs over the past years.

This is an extraordinary opportunity to learn from and question one of the foremost thinkers and leaders of the rapidly accelerating global effort to both make the public aware of what was previously unacknowledged about UFO and alien interaction with humans and also to address the deep questions about what is happening and what it might mean for the future of humanity.

Gregg Braden

Gregg Braden is a five-time New York Times best-selling author, and is internationally renowned as a pioneer in bridging science, spirituality and human potential! His discoveries have led to 12 award-winning books now published in over 40 languages. The UK’s Watkins Journal lists Gregg among the top 100 of “the world’s most spiritually influential living people” for the 5th consecutive year, and he is a 2017 nominee for the prestigious Templeton Award.

Rosemary Ellen Guiley

Rosemary Ellen Guiley is a leading expert on the paranormal and supernatural. With more than 50 books – including 10 encyclopedias – and hundreds of articles in print on a wide range of paranormal, spiritual and mystical topics, she possesses exceptional knowledge of the field. Her present work focuses on inter-dimensional entity contact experiences and communication.

John L. Petersen

John L. Petersen is considered by many to be one of the most informed futurists in the world. He is best-known for writing and thinking about high impact surprises (wild cards) and the process of surprise anticipation. His current professional involvements include the development of sophisticated tools for anticipatory analysis and surprise anticipation, long-range strategic planning and helping leadership design new approaches for dealing with the future.

 

He has led national non-profit organizations, worked in sales, manufacturing, real estate development, and marketing and advertising, mostly for companies he founded. A graduate electrical engineer, he has also promoted rock concerts; produced conventions; and worked as a disc jockey, among other things.

Mr. Petersens government and political experience include stints at the National War College, the Institute for National Security Studies, the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and the National Security Council staff at the White House. He was a naval flight officer in the U.S. Navy and Navy Reserve and is a decorated veteran of both the Vietnam and Persian Gulf wars. He has served in senior positions for a number of presidential political campaigns and was an elected delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1984. He was twice the runner-up to be Secretary of the Navy.

In 1989, Petersen founded The Arlington Institute (TAI), a non-profit, future-oriented research institute. TAI operates on the premise that effective thinking about the future is impossible without casting a very wide net. The “think tank” serves as a global agent for change by developing new concepts, processes and tools for anticipating the future and translating that knowledge into better present-day decisions. Using advanced information technology, a core group of bright thinkers and an international network of exceptionally curious people along with simulations, modeling, scenario building, polling and analysis, Arlington helps equip leaders and organizations from many disciplines with tools and actionable perspectives for dealing with uncertain times.

An award-winning writer, Petersens first book, The Road to 2015: Profiles of the Future was awarded Outstanding Academic Book of 1995 by CHOICE Academic Review, and remained on The World Future Societys best-seller list for more than a year. His Out of the Blue: How to Anticipate Wild Cards and Big Future Surprises book was also a WFS best-seller. His latest book is a Vision of 2012: Planning for Extraordinary Change. His coauthored article, (The Year 2000: Social Chaos or Social Transformation?) was one of the most highly acclaimed writings on Y2K. His 1988 book-length report (The Diffusion of Power: An Era of Realignment) was used at the highest levels of American government as a basis for strategic planning. He has also written papers on the future of national security and the military, the future of energy and the future of the media.

Petersen is a past board member of the World Future Society, writes on the future of aviation for Professional Pilot magazine and is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Charles A. and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation. He is a former network member of the Global Business Network and a fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science. A provocative public speaker, he addresses a wide array of audiences around the world on a variety of future subjects. When he is not writing or speaking, Petersen invests in and develops resources for large, international projects and advanced technology start-up companies. He lives in the Washington, D.C. area in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia. Speaking Inquiries: Email [email protected]

Robert David Steele

Robert David Steele, former spy, former Marine Corps officer, a proponent of Open Source Everything, Presidential candidate in 2012 and perhaps again in 2024, recommended for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 will integrate his life’s experience with his lessons from the works of others to explore love versus fear as a foundation for politics; liberty under natural law versus predatory fascism as we now have in the USA; and the possibilities for cosmic awakening very soon, in a full-on defeat of the Deep State and its Archon masters.

Chris Robinson

Chris Robinson’s amazing ability to dream about the future in terms that can be reliably translated into people, times, places, and activities has been the subject of books, major university scientific studies, films, articles, TV shows, and just about all forms of media. He has taught many people how to dream about the future and, through his advanced intuitive capabilities, helped thousands to understand how to deal with seemingly impossible personal situations. He is also a healer, having on numerous occasions led people with supposedly terminal conditions to eliminate those issues and return to a healthy life. There is no one else in the world that has Chris’s fascinating background (undercover police work, etc.), coupled with these amazing personal gifts.

Frank DeMarco

FRANK DeMARCO has been reporting on his conversations with non-physical beings for more than two decades, in magazine articles, talks, and in a dozen non-fiction books and two novels.

FRANK DeMARCO is the author of 14 books rooted in more than 25 years of psychic exploration, including It’s All One World, Awakening from the 3D World, Rita’s World (two volumes), The Cosmic Internet, The Sphere and the Hologram, and Imagine Yourself Well. Since 2005, he has been actively engaged in an on-going series of conversations with various non-physical beings, including historical individuals, “past lives,” aspects of personal guidance, and a generalized group he calls “the guys upstairs.”

He is also the author of three novels, Messenger, That Phenomenal Background (originally published as Babe in the Woods) and Dark Fire.

Dr. Larry Dossey

Dr. Larry Dossey is a physician of internal medicine and former Chief of Staff of Medical City Dallas Hospital. He received his M. D. degree from Southwestern Medical School (Dallas), and trained in internal medicine at Parkland and the VA hospitals in Dallas. Dossey has lectured at medical schools and hospitals throughout the United States and abroad. In 1988 he delivered the annual Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Lecture in New Delhi, India, the only physician ever invited to do so. He is the author of twelve books dealing with consciousness, spirituality, and healing, including the New York Times bestseller HEALING WORDS: THE POWER OF PRAYER AND THE PRACTICE OF MEDICINE, and most recently One Mind: How Our Individual Mind Is Part of a Greater Consciousness and Why It Matters. His books have been translated into languages around the world. Dr. Dossey is the former co-chairman of the Panel on Mind/Body Interventions, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, National Institutes of Health. He is the executive editor of the peer-reviewed journal EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing. Dr. Dossey lectures around the world. He lives in Santa Fe with his wife Barbara, a nurse-consultant and the author of several award-winning books.

William Buhlman

William Buhlman is a recognized expert on the subject of out-of-body experiences. The author’s forty years of extensive personal out-of-body explorations give him a unique and thought provoking insight into this subject. His first book, Adventures beyond the Body chronicles his personal journey of self-discovery through out-of-body travel, and provides the reader with the preparation and techniques that can be used for their own adventure. He has conducted an international out-of-body experience survey that includes over 16,000 participants from forty-two countries. The provocative results of this survey are presented in his book, The Secret of the Soul. This cutting edge book explores the unique opportunities for personal growth and profound spiritual awakenings that are reported during out-of-body experiences.

Over the past two decades William has developed an effective system to experience safe, self initiated out-of-body adventures. He conducts an in-depth six-day workshop titled, Out-of-Body Exploration Intensive at the renowned Monroe Institute in Virginia. As a certified hypnotherapist, William incorporates various methods, including hypnosis, visualization and meditation techniques in his workshops to explore the profound nature of out-of-body experiences and the benefits of accelerated personal development. Through lectures, workshops and his books the author teaches the preparation and techniques of astral projection and spiritual exploration.

The author brings a refreshing look to how we can use out-of-body experiences to explore our spiritual identity and enhance our intellectual and physical lives. William is best known for his ability to teach people how to have profound spiritual adventures through the use of out-of-body experiences. In addition, he has developed an extensive series of audio programs that are designed to expand awareness and assist in the exploration of consciousness. William has appeared on numerous television and radio shows worldwide. William’s books are currently available in twelve languages. The author lives in Delaware, USA. For more information visit his web site, www.astralinfo.org.

Joe McMoneagle

Joe was the longest operational psychic spy in the US government’s very highly classified Stargate program where they used psychics and intuitives to look into installations and people around the world that were of interest to government intelligence agencies. They called the process remote viewing.

As it turned out, the remote viewers discovered that they were – not limited by either time or space and produced drawings and assessments that could not have been obtained in any other way. The Soviets had an active remote viewing program at the same time and it is rumored that Russia, China and the U.S. still have initiatives of this kind that are operational.

Joe’s stories are fascinating, like the time he mentally got inside a Chinese nuclear weapon and saw how the triggering mechanism worked . . . and then went out and bought the parts at Radio Shack to show the scientists in the intelligence agency exactly how it was done. The remote viewers could find submarines at the bottom of the ocean and crashed aircraft in the middle of African jungles.

Dr. Joe Dispenza

Dr Joe Dispenza is an international lecturer, researcher, corporate consultant, author, and educator who has been invited to speak in more than 33 countries on six continents. As a lecturer and educator, he is driven by the conviction that each of us has the potential for greatness and unlimited abilities. In his easy-to-understand, encouraging, and compassionate style, he has educated thousands of people, detailing how they can rewire their brains and recondition their bodies to make lasting changes.

Dr. Joe is also a faculty member at Quantum University in Honolulu, Hawaii; the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies in Rhinebeck, New York; and Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. He’s also an invited chair of the research committee at Life University in Atlanta, Georgia.

As a researcher, Dr. Joe’s passion can be found at the intersection of the latest findings from the fields of neuroscience, epigenetics, and quantum physics to explore the science behind spontaneous remissions. He uses that knowledge to help people heal themselves of illnesses, chronic conditions, and even terminal diseases so they can enjoy a more fulfilled and happy life, as well as evolve their consciousness. At his advanced workshops around the world, he has partnered with other scientists to perform extensive research on the effects of meditation, including epigenetic testing, brain mapping with electroencephalograms (EEGs), and individual energy field testing with a gas discharge visualization (GDV) machine. His research also includes measuring both heart coherence with HeartMath monitors and the energy present in the workshop environment before, during, and after events with a GDV Sputnik sensor.

As a NY Times best-selling author, Dr. Joe has written Becoming Supernatural: How Common People Are Doing the Uncommon(Hay House, 2017), which draws on research conducted at his advanced workshops since 2012 to explore how common people are doing the uncommon to transform themselves and their lives; You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter (Hay House, 2014), which explores our ability to heal without drugs or surgery, but rather by thought alone; Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One (Hay House, 2012) and Evolve Your Brain: The Science of Changing Your Mind (2007), both of which detail the neuroscience of change and epigenetics. His film appearances include Transcendence: Live Life Beyond the Ordinary (2018); HEAL (2017); E-Motion (2014); Sacred Journey of the Heart (2012); People v. the State of Illusion (2011); What IF – The Movie (2010); Unleashing Creativity (2009); and What the #$*! Do We Know? & Down the Rabbit Hole, extended DVD version (2005).

Dr. Todd Ovokaitys

After two years at Northwestern, he was accepted into an accelerated combined graduate/undergraduate program at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, which conferred both B.A. and M.D. degrees. Advanced training was at Georgetown University Hospital, with a Residency and Chief Residency in Internal Medicine followed by a Fellowship in Pulmonary and Intensive Care Medicine.

During his Pulmonary Fellowship, the specialty that concerns the lungs, Dr. Todd began his research with cells of the immune system. Many procedures were done on AIDS patients to diagnose their lung problems. Observing this dire disease firsthand and the toxic results of early medical treatments, Dr. Todd developed a passion for finding better solutions. Towards the end of his Fellowship, he became aware of the benefits of Holistic Medicine for improving the function of the immune system while building rather than impairing the function of other systems.

Inspired to learn more, he moved to Southern California to study with practitioners of Complementary Medicine. In the context of these studies, he had an experience so radical that the course of his life and work were forever transformed.

During a meditation class in the summer of 1989, Dr. Todd paired with another student for an exercise. The process was profound and they took turns, one in the process while the other scribed to record any breakthroughs of awareness. Much as in the Jodie Foster movie “Contact,” the usual anchor points dissolved with the feeling of instant transport to a different dimension of being. There was a doorway or portal to traverse, with a message of the responsibility taken on through the choice to go further.

Instantly upon walking through this doorway, a living form was seen that filled a room – and had the shape of a DNA strand enlarged millions of times. This form communicated that science only partly understood how DNA worked. The linear understanding of DNA as an enormous data string was correct but incomplete. In addition, DNA was a structure of coils within coils in an environment of moving charges that permitted DNA to send electromagnetic signals much as a radio transmitter. Further, DNA could receive and be conditioned by electromagnetic signals. Most significantly, if it were possible to determine and transmit the correct resonant signals, that it was possible to switch the activity of a sick cell to that of a healthy cell, an old cell to that of a young cell.

This experience brought with it a certainty that solutions were possible. After intensive review of the previous work showing the effects of electromagnetic energy patterns on cellular health and function, Dr. Todd located a colleague with the technical expertise to build the desired invention.

Mary Rodwell

Mary Rodwell is a professional counsellor, hypnotherapist, researcher, metaphysician, and founder and principal of ACERN (Australian Close Encounter Resource Network). She is internationally known for her work with ET experiencers and star children. She offers regressions and support for contactees and has organized a buddy system to help those who have had close encounters. Mary has spoken at conferences in Australia, USA, UK, Scandinavia, Hawaii and New Zealand. She is a regular guest on international radio and online shows and writes article for international publications like the UFO Truth Magazine. Mary is co-founder of FREE, a non-profit organization aimed at researching close encounters.

She is the author of, Awakening – How extra-terrestrial contact can transform your life. Mary is working on her second book, The New Human, due for release this year.

Freddy Silva

Freddy Silva is a best-selling author, and leading researcher of ancient civilizations, restricted history, sacred sites and their interaction with consciousness. He has published six books in six languages, and produced eleven documentaries. Described by one CEO as “perhaps the best metaphysical speaker in the world right now,” for two decades he has been an international keynote speaker, with notable appearances at the International Science and Consciousness Conference, the International Society For The Study Of Subtle Energies & Energy Medicine, and the Association for Research and Enlightenment, in addition to appearances on Gaia TV, History Channel, BBC, and radio shows such as Coast To Coast. He also leads private sell-out tours to ancient temples worldwide. www.invisibletemple.com

Sharry Edwards

Sharry Edwards has been accused of being too scientific by some, too esoteric by others. In actuality, she is a bridge between both fields of inquiry. Sharry is the acknowledged pioneer in the emerging field of Vocal Profiling using BioAcoustic Biology. For many years she has provided the leading-edge research to show the voice as a holographic representation of the body that can be used to change the face of medicine.

Sharry asks that we imagine a future in which we can be individually identified and maintained through the use of frequency based biomarkers that keep us healthy and emotionally balanced. Her work at the Institute of BioAcoustic Biology has shown that we can each have dominion over those frequencies by individual mind management or a simple remote control that is completely programmable. Using the unique techniques of Vocal Profiling and evaluation, emotional as well as physiological issues can be revealed and addressed.

Her work with the human voice reveals that people who share similar traumas, stresses, diseases, toxicities…share similar, if not identical, vocal anomalies. She brings together ancient knowledge with modern ideas of harmonics and frequency relationship theories to show that math can be used as a form of predictive, diagnostic and curative foundation for wellness. Through entrainment of the frequency grids of the brain, the body can be programmed to support its own optimal form and function.

Dr. John McMichael

John McMichael, PhD, is the founder and CEO of Beach Tree Labs, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and early development of new therapeutic agents targeting unmet medical needs. These disorders range from herpes infections to chronic fatigue syndrome to urinary incontinence. His PhD is in virology and immunology from Oregon State University. He headed up the labs at one of the largest private veterinary research practices in the country, was a college professor for more than a decade, and now works out of a small lab on his form in New York state and a larger, more sophisticated lab in Providence, Rhode Island. He holds over 200 patents, has published in books and peer-reviewed journals, and is currently working with his team to begin formal FDA trials for product candidates for chronic traumatic brain injury and Ehlers-Danlos syndromes.

Good health is dependent on the appropriate transfer of information within and between cells. The informational and molecular disharmonies associated with disease can be reversed using appropriate therapeutic signals that stimulate the return to the normal state without adverse effects. One such signal molecule, SLO, has demonstrated clinical utility in a broad spectrum of indications that would at first glance appear to be unrelated. The underlying common thread that links these disorders is representative of the targets to which resonant molecular signals are directed.

Dr. Carrie Hempel & Brian Sanderoff

Integrative Physician Dr. Carrie Hempel and Holistic Pharmacist Brian Sanderoffare both experts in the medicinal use of cannabis in Maryland.

Dr. Hempel is a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2002. As an Osteopathic Physician, she has embraced a holistic approach to patient care, providing loving attention to the relationship between mind, body, and spirit. For the past 11 years she has received specialist training, Board Certification and expertise in several fields including Internal Medicine, Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine, and Hospice & Palliative Medicine, along with many Integrative modalities. She is a member of the Society of Cannabis Clinicians, the Association of Cannabis Specialists, and is registered with the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission.

Over the course of her career she has seen the consistent struggle of patients dealing with chronic, progressive, debilitating illness, and witnessed the challenges and limitations of the current pharmaceutical options for pain and symptom managment. Her passion for this population has grown, along with her desire to advocate for patients to have access to non-opioid, holistic options to enhance quality of life and optimize function.

Trained as a pharmacist, Brian Sanderoff has integrated 25 years of experience with his traditional medical training and herbalism, nutrition and numerous other holistic modalities to help clients devise practical, common-sense, safe solutions to most any health issue.

His clients appreciate how he embraces a complementary approach to health and how his holistic “compass” brings them new solutions to their unique health concerns – especially chronic diseases.

Mary Rodwell

Mary Rodwell is a professional counsellor, hypnotherapist, researcher, metaphysician, and founder and principal of ACERN (Australian Close Encounter Resource Network). She is internationally known for her work with ET experiencers and star children. She offers regressions and support for contactees and has organised a buddy system to help those who have had close encounters. Mary has spoken at conferences in Australia, USA, UK, Scandinavia, Hawaii and New Zealand. She is a regular guest on international radio and online shows and writes article for international publications like the UFO Truth Magazine. Mary is co-founder of FREE, a non-profit organisation aimed at researching close encounters.

Steve McDonald

Steve McDonald is an extraordinary Australian thinker and researcher who arguably knows as much about the structure of the global planetary transition that we are experiencing as anyone on the planet. He draws coherent pictures from the deep insights of Clair W. Graves and paints clear, explanatory images of not only how humanity has evolved to this point, but what is inevitably on our horizon . . . and how this epic transition will continue to play out.

He is currently writing a book about the global paradigm shift that’s taking us beyond the scientific-industrial era. Steve served with the Australian Army for 15 years, including war service as an infantry company commander in Somalia, 1993. He is also a qualified military helicopter pilot and on leaving the army he flew a rescue helicopter in the tropical Mackay-Whitsunday region of Queensland. Building upon his extensive experience in unpredictable environments, after retiring from flying Steve specialized as a change management consultant. He consequently studied the developmental psychology research of Dr Clare W Graves and became one of the first Australians qualified to teach Dr Graves’ theory under the banner of Spiral Dynamics Integral. A long-term struggle with posttraumatic stress has driven Steve’s deep interest in human nature and consciousness. He is a founder of Psychedelic Research in Science & Medicine, an Australian non-profit association. He is also a founder of AADII, a non-profit company created to support worldwide transformational change.

Robert Coxon

Although Robert Coxon had been studying and composing music for many years, it was after taking the Silva Mind Control course that he realized how powerful sound could be in relaxing the body and opening the consciousness. He then decided to write his first album.

Cristal Silence quickly became a major hit throughout Canada, staying on top of the charts for many years. This was the beginning of his continuing phenomenal success as composer and solo artist. For the last 29 years he has performed only his original compositions in concert. Robert has been nominated four times for the prestigious “Felix” award (French Canada equivalent to the Grammy), and became Canada’s best-selling New Age artist. His international breakthrough came after composing The Silent Path in 1995. This album was an instant hit in Canada, the USA and France. After hearing The Silent Path, Lee Carroll, internationally renowned author of 15 bestselling Kryon and Indigo books, contacted Robert and asked him to join his team on tour. Through the years this has given Robert the opportunity to experience different cultures and inspires him to write music honoring these many countries he performs in.

Robert offers us nine albums, the latest three being The Infinite, essence of life, Goddess -The Power of Woman and Passion Compassion Alegeria.

Joe Dispenza

needs bio…

Gary Sycalik

Gary Sycalik has been described as an entrepreneur, businessman, project developer/manager, consultant/advisor, organizational troubleshooter, strategic planner, facilitator, futurist, business and social architect, complex problematic game designer (policy, strategic, tactic levels) and writer. Gary brings a robust horizontal and vertical functional capability to any project from the conceptual to operational stage.

Kingsley L. Dennis Phd.

Kingsley L. Dennis, PhD, is a sociologist, researcher, and writer. He previously worked in the Sociology Department at Lancaster University, UK. Kingsley is the author of numerous articles on social futures; technology and new media communications; global affairs; and conscious evolution. He is the author of several critically acclaimed books including Healing the Wounded Mind, The Sacred Revival, The Phoenix Generation, New Consciousness for a New World, Struggle for Your Mind, After the Car, and the celebrated Dawn of the Akashic Age (with Ervin Laszlo). He has traveled extensively and lived in various countries. He currently lives in Andalusia, Spain.

 

His homepage is www.kingsleydennis.com

Penny Kelly

Penny Kelly is an author, teacher, speaker, publisher, personal and spiritual consultant, and Naturopathic physician. She travels, lectures, and teaches a variety of classes and workshops, and maintains a large consulting practice. She has been involved in scientific research and investigations into consciousness at Pinelandia Laboratory near Ann Arbor, MI.