marți, 8 mai 2012

30 Famous Mythical Humanoid Creatures

Some mythical creatures, have their origin in tradition and some might be
living in distant past. However each culture is associated with a multitude of such creatures, many of them being humanoids. Literally, there are thousands of legendary humanoid creatures that might have in real or believed to be lurked upon our planet but we shall tell here the tales of the most popular
ones integrated in various cultures.

1. Gog and Magog
Gog and Magog

Gog Magog appear in the Qur’an, Book of Genesis, the Book of Ezekiel and the Book of Revelation. They are variously presented as supernatural beings, demons or national groups that lurked upon the land. Gog and Magog occur widely in mythology and folklore and their existence is accepted by many religions including Islam, Christianity and Judaism.

The widely accepted belief both in Christianity and Islam holds that “He of the Two Horns” (a great and righteous ruler) or Two Ages (one who impacts on two ages) travelled the world in three directions, until he found a tribe threatened by Gog and Magog, who were of an “evil and destructive nature” and “caused great corruption on earth.” The people offered tribute in exchange for protection, he agreed to help them, but refused the tribute; he constructed a great wall that the hostile nations were unable to penetrate. They will be trapped there until doomsday, and their escape will be a sign of the end: “The War of Gog and Magog” would precede the return of Jesus. .

2. Satyr

Satyrs were originally seen as companions of the goat god Pan in ancient Greek civilisation. The first drawings of satyrs were of normal men, though often with an erect phallus. It was later merged with the Roman faun which is when they began to be depicted as half men half goats (the upper body being that of the man, and the lower half being that of a goat). Satyrs are described as roguish but faint-hearted folk — subversive and dangerous, yet shy and cowardly.
Many early accounts which apparently refer to this animal describe the males as being sexually aggressive towards human women and towards females of its own species. In old age they are often seen with horns on their head, while young satyrs are seen with nubs instead.

3. Abarimon

Abarimon is the name of a legendary race with backwards feet, but in spite of this handicap were able to run at great speed. They lived side by side with wild animals and attempts to capture them failed because they were so savage.
They lived in a great valley of Mount Imaus (now called theHimalayan Mountains in Pakistan). There was a special quality of air which meant if it was breathed for a long period of time it would be impossible to breathe any other type of air and the inhabitants could never leave the valley alive.

4. Nephilim

Nephilim are beings, who appear in the Hebrew Bible; specifically mentioned in the Book of Genesis and the Book of Numbers; they are also mentioned in other Biblical texts and in some non-canonical Jewish writings. They were called fallen ones because men’s hearts would fail at the sight of them.
Some suggest that they were giants and when they fell, the ground shook, causing others to fall too. They might not be historical figures but ancient imagery with questionable meaning. Some view of them as the hybrid offspring of fallen angels and human women. In Hebrew Bible there is also mention of Rephaites alongside Nephilims, who were an ancient race of giants in Iron Age and were thought to be dead that lurked upon earth.

5. Mermaid
A mermaid is a mythological aquatic creature with a female human head and torso and the tail of a fish..The mermaids have been discussed since at least 5000 BC. Her origins are believed to be from the Great Queen Atargatis, who loved a mortal shepherd and unintentionally killed him.
Ashamed, she jumped into a lake to take the form of a fish, but the waters would not conceal her divine beauty. Thereafter, she took the form of a mermaid—human above the waist, fish below. Mermaids were however noted in British folklore as unlucky omens – both foretelling disaster and provoking it. There is a high possibility that people had been confusing them with Sirenias (aquatic animals) or people suffering from a congenital disease Sirenomelia (aka mermaid syndrome in which a child is born with his or her legs fused together).

6. Banshee
The Banshee is a female spirit in Irish mythology, usually seen as an omen of death and a messenger from the Otherworld. The story of the bean-sidhe began as a fairy woman keening at the death of important personages. In later stories, the appearance of the banshee could foretell the death.

According to the legend, the banshee can appear in a variety of guises. Most often she appears as an ugly, frightening hag, but can also appear as a stunningly beautiful woman of any age that suits her and is seen washing the blood stained clothes or armour of those who are about to die. Although not always seen, her mourning call is heard, usually at night when someone is about to die and usually around woods.

7. Abatwa


In Zulu mythology, Abatwa are tiny humans said to be able to hide beneath a blade of grass and to be able to ride ants. They are said to live a nomadic lifestyle and are continually on the hunt for game. Legend states that if one happens to come across an Abatwa, one will typically be asked a question like, “From where did you first see me?”
One must reply by saying one saw them from a mountain, or some far away area. They are said to be extremely sensitive about their size, and if one answers by saying that one only saw them right then for the first time, the Abatwa will try to kill them with poison arrows. Stepping on an Abatwa by accident is also said to be a death sentence.Due to their shy nature, they will only tolerate being seen by the very young (said to be anyone under the age of 4), by magicians, and by pregnant women. If a pregnant woman in her seventh month of pregnancy sees a male Abatwa, it is said that she will give birth to a boy.

8. Elf
An elf is a being of Germanic mythology. The elves were originally thought of as a race of divine or semi-divine beings endowed with magical powers, which they use both for the benefit and the injury of mankind.
In pre-Christian mythology, they appear to have been divided into light elves and dark elves, The earliest preserved description of elves comes from Norse mythology that holds that the men could be elevated to the rank of elves after death, Crossbreeding was possible between elves and humans in the Old Norse belief.Words for the nymphs of the Greek were translated to be same as “elves” or its variants by Anglo-Saxon scholars.

9. Cyclops
In Greek and Roman mythology, a cyclops is a member of a primordial race of giants, each with a single eye in the middle of its forehead. It is a great possibility that people have been mistaken a congenital abnormality called Cyclopia in which the human baby is malformed having only one central eye.

10. Orc
Orc is a word used to refer to various races of tough and warlike humanoid creatures in various fantasy settings. Orcs are often portrayed as misshapen humanoids who are brutal, warmongering, and sadistic.
Orcs are described of varying size, ugly, filthy, with a taste for human flesh. They are fanged, bow-legged and long-armed, and some have dark skin as if burned. The author Tolkien describes them as “squat, broad, flat-nosed, sallow-skinned, with wide mouths and slant eyes … degraded and repulsive versions of the (to Europeans) least lovely Mongol-types”. They are portrayed as miserable, crafty and vicious beings. In nearly all the epic works, their origins are considered as foul broodlings animated solely by the Satan’s evil will.

11. Kapre
Kapre is a Philippine mythical creature that could be characterized as a tree demon, but with more human characteristics. It is described as being a tall, brown, hairy male with a beard. Kapres are normally described as smoking a big tobacco pipe, whose strong smell would attract human attention. The term kapre comes from the Arabic “kaffir” meaning a non-believer in God.

Kapres may make contact with people to offer friendship, or if it is attracted to a woman. If a Kapre befriends any human, especially because of love, the Kapre will consistently follow its “love interest” throughout life. Also, if one is a friend of the Kapre then that person has the ability to see it and if they were to sit on it then any other person could see it. Kapres are also said to play pranks on people, frequently making travelers become disoriented and lose their way in the mountains or in the woods.
Leprechauns have been linked to the Tuatha Dé Danann of Irish mythology who are thought to derive from the pre-Christian deities of Ireland. When the surviving stories were written, Ireland had been Christian for centuries, and the Tuatha Dé were represented as mortal kings, queens and heroes of the distant past; however there are many clues to their former divine status.
Popular depiction shows leperchauns as being no taller than a small child. The leprechaun is said to be a solitary creature, whose principal occupation is making and mending shoes, and who enjoys practical jokes. According to William Butler Yeats, the great wealth of these fairies comes from the “treasure-crocks, buried of old in war-time”, which they have uncovered and appropriated.According to McAnally the leprechaun is the son of an “evil spirit” and a “degenerate fairy” and is “not wholly good nor wholly evil”

13. Ogre
Ogre possibly derived from Oegrus from Greek mythology who was the son of Greek blood shedder god. The word ogre is of French origin. Keeping the Greek myth, Oegrus might have cursed some people to ogres where an ogre is described large, cruel, monstrous and hideous humanoid monster.
Also featured in mythology, folklore and fiction. Ogres are often depicted in fairy tales and folklore as feeding on human beings, and have appeared in many classic works of literature. In art, ogres are often depicted with a large head, abundant hair and beard, a voracious appetite, and a strong body. The term is often applied in a metaphorical sense to disgusting persons who exploit, brutalize or devour their victims. The French tale tells of them as habitants of kingdom of Logres [England].

14. Dziwożona
Dziwozoana or Mamuna are female swamp demons in Slavic mythology known for being malicious and dangerous. Most at risk of becoming one of these demons after death were thought to bemidwives, old maids, unmarried mothers, pregnant women who die before childbirth, as well as abandoned children.

Sometimes they carry off young men to be their husbands. The Dziwozona had huge breasts which they used for attack and murdering.

15. Mono Grande
Mono Grande

They are descibed as ape-like hairy and men-like torso-ed cannibals sighted in South America. They are reported as being aggressive to humans.
And on encounter they attack humans on sight but might carry off women for breeding. However they are unrecognized by a scientific consensus and myths that came to South America with European colonists.

16. Vampires
Vampires are mythological beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence (generally in the form of blood) of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person.Although vampiric entities have been recorded in many cultures, the belief in vampires and bloodsucking demons is as old as man himself, and may go back to prehistoric times.
Vampires were generally referred to as cold beings who could be destroyed by daylight. Holes appearing in the earth over a grave were taken as a sign of vampirism. There is no scientific evidence of vampirism except the Vampire Bat.

17. Tellem
The Tellem were the people who inhabited the Bandiagara Escarpment in Mali. It is thought by some in Mali today that the Tellem possessed the power of flight.
They are described like “Lord of the ring’s Hobbit like creatures” and they built dwellings around the base of the escarpment as well as directly into the cliff-face like the hobbits. Many of these structures are still visible in the area.
18. Yeti
Yeti or abominable snowman mythological humanoid creature  said to inhabit the Himalayan region of Pakistan and Nepal. The scientific community largely regards the Yeti as a legend, yet it remains one of the most famous creatures of cryptozoology parallel to Bigfoot of North America.
It is tall, bipedal creature covered with long white hair and wore no clothes. He had an interesting feature of changing his hair colour in sunlight to fox red.

19. Tiyanak

Tiyank is a creature which, in Philippine mythology, imitates the form of a child. It usually takes the form of a newborn baby and cries like one in the jungle to attract unwary travelers.
Once it is picked up by the victim, it reverts to its true form and attacks the victim. Aside from slashing victims, the tianak also delights in leading travelers astray, or in kidnapping children.
Theories claim that the tianak is the spirit of a child whose mother died before giving birth. This caused it to be “born in the ground”, thus gaining its current state.

20. Werewolf
Werewolf is a mythological human with the ability to shapeshift into a wolf or an anthropomorphic wolf-like creature, either purposely, by being bitten or scratched by another werewolf, or after being placed under a curse.
This transformation is often associated with the appearance of the full moon. Werewolves are often attributed super-human strength and senses, far beyond those of both wolves or men.

21. Fomorian
In Irish mythology, were a semi-divine race who inhabited Ireland in ancient times. They may have once been believed to be the beings who preceded the gods, similar to the Greek Titans.

It has been suggested that they represent the gods of chaos and wild nature, as opposed to the Tuatha Dé Danann who represent the gods of human civilization. They are sometimes said to have had the body of a man and the head of a goat, or to have had one eye, one arm and one leg, but some, for example Elatha, were very beautiful.

22. Blemmyes
The Blemmyes was a tribe which became fictionalized as a race of creatures believed to be acephalous (headless) monsters who had eyes and mouths on their chest. Ancient writers sometimes used the term anthropophagi (Grk: man eaters) to describe the Blemmyes, as they were known for their cannibalistic proclivities.

23. Tikbalang

Tikbalang is a creature of Philippine myth said to lurk in the mountains and forests of the Philippines. It is generally described as a tall, bony humanoid creature with disproportionately long limbs, to the point that its knees reach above its head when it squats down. It has the head and feet of an animal, most commonly a horse.

It is sometimes believed to be a transformation of an aborted fetus which has been sent to earth from hell. Tikbalangs are said to scare travelers and lead them astray such that they keep on returning to an arbitrary path no matter how far he goes or where he turns. Supposedly this is counteracted by wearing one’s shirt inside out.

24. Encantado
An encantado is a Brazilian legendary creature. They live in a deep underwater realm named the Encante. Encantados are most commonly viewed as a type of freshwater dolphin or sea snake that has the ability to shapeshift into human form.
They are characterized by superior musical ability, seductiveness, and attraction to parties. The creature’s transformation into human form seems to be rare, and usually occurs at night. While in human form the encantado will wear a hat to hide its protruding forehead. It does not disappear while shapeshifting and frequently displays magical abilities, such as the power to control storms and haunt humans. They use various mind control techniques and can inflict illness, insanity, and even death. The creatures are known for kidnapping humans. Many villagers will not go near the Amazon River at night because of this. Plenty of South Americans believe in the existence of the encantado and claim to have seen and interacted with the species.

25. Aswang

Aswang is a mythical creature in Filipino folklore. The aswang is an inherently evil vampire-like creature and is the subject of a wide variety of myths and stories, the details of which vary greatly.
Spanish colonizers noted that the Aswang was the most feared among the mythical creatures of the Philippines, even in the 16th century. “Aswangs” are often described as a combination of vampire and witch and are almost always female. They are sometimes used as a generic term applied to all types of witches, manananggals, shapeshifters, werewolves, and monsters. Aswang stories and definitions vary greatly from region to region and person to person, so no one particular set of characteristics can be ascribed to the term. However, the term is often used interchangeably with manananggal, which is a particular creature with a specific set of features. They are often portrayed as a monster with wings which flap loudly when she’s far away and quietly when she’s nearer.

26. Basajaun
In Basque mythology, the basajaunak are a spirit dwelling in caves or in the woods who protects flocks of livestock and teaches skills such as agriculture and ironworking to humans.
The basajaun also exists in Aragonese mythology in the valleys of Tena, Ansó, and Broto. Fifteenth-century carvings depicting the basajaunak can be seen in Burgos Cathedral and in the monastery of Santa María la Real in Nájera.

27.  Rakshasa
Rakshasha is a demon or unrighteous spirit in Hindu and Buddhist mythology. They are believed to be derived from foot of the Hindu God of Creation. Rakshasas are a populous race of supernatural humanoids who tend toward evil. Powerful warriors, they resort to the use of magic and illusion when unsuccessful with conventional weapons.
As shape-changers, they can assume various physical forms, and it is not always clear whether they have a true or natural form. Rakshasas are notorious for disturbing sacrifices, desecrating graves, harassing priests, possessing human beings, and so on. Their fingernails are venomous, and they feed on human flesh and spoiled food.

28. Wendigo

Wendigo is a mythical creature appearing in the mythology of the Algonquian people. It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit into which humans could transform, or which could possess humans. Those who indulged in cannibalism were at particular risk, and the legend appears to have reinforced this practice as taboo.

Wendigos were alien like embodiments of gluttony, greed, and excess; never satisfied after killing and consuming one person, they were constantly searching for new victims. In some traditions, humans who became overpowered by greed could turn into Wendigos; the Wendigo myth thus served as a method of encouraging cooperation and moderation.

29. Incubus

Incubus is a demon in male form supposed to lie upon sleepers, especially women, in order to have sexual intercourse with them, according to a number of mythological and legendary traditions. An incubus may pursue sexual relations with a woman in order to father a child, to carry on its legend.
Some sources indicate that it may be identified by its unnaturally large or cold penis. Tradition holds that repeated intercourse with an incubus may result in the deterioration of health or death. Victims may have been experiencing waking dreams or sleep paralysis. The influence of incubi could also have been invoked to explain otherwise “unexplainable” pregnancies or real rapists might have been described as incubus to escape punishment.

30. Sasquatch
Sasquatch or better known as Bigfoot is usually described as a large, hairy, bipedal humanoid. The scientific community considers Bigfoot to be a combination of folklore, misidentification, and hoax, rather than a real creature.
Alleged witnesses have described large eyes, a pronounced brow ridge, and a large, low-set forehead; the top of the head has been described as rounded and crested, similar to the sagittal crest of the male gorilla. Bigfoot is commonly reported to have a strong, unpleasant smell by those who claim to have encountered it. Proponents have also claimed that Bigfoot is omnivorous and mainly nocturnal.

luni, 30 aprilie 2012

The 18 Most Suppressed Inventions Ever

1. The Original Electric Car: Unplugged?

The Original Electric Car: Unplugged?
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Perhaps the most notorious suppressed invention is the General Motors EV1, subject of the 2006 documentary, Who Killed the Electric Car? The EV1 was the world's first mass-produced electric car, with 800 of them up for lease from GM in the late '90s. GM ended the EV1 line in 1999, stating that consumers weren't happy with the limited driving range of the car's batteries, making it unprofitable to continue production.

Many skeptics, however, believe GM killed the EV1 under pressure from oil companies, who stand to lose the most if high-efficiency vehicles conquer the market. It didn't help that GM hunted down and destroyed every last EV1, ensuring the technology would die out.

2. The Death of the American Streetcar

The Death of the American Streetcar
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In 1921, if the streetcar industry wasn't actually naming streetcars Desire, it was certainly desiring more streetcars. They netted $1 billion, causing General Motors to hemorrhage $65 million in the face of a thriving industry. GM retaliated by buying and closing hundreds of independent railway companies, boosting the market for gas-guzzling GM buses and cars. While a recent urban movement to rescue mass transit has been underway, it is unlikely we'll ever see streetcars return to their former glory.

3. The 99-MPG Car

The 99-MPG Car
The holy grail of automotive technology is the 99-mpg car. Although the technology has been available for years, automakers have deliberately withheld it from the U.S. market. In 2000, the New York Times reported a little-known fact, at least to most: A diesel-powered dynamo called the Volkswagen Lupo had driven around the world averaging higher than 99 mpg. The Lupo was sold in Europe from 1998 to 2005 but, once again, automakers prevented it from coming to market; they claimed Americans had no interest in small, fuel-efficient cars.

4. Free Energy

Free Energy
Nikola Tesla was more than just the inspiration for a hair metal band, he was also an undisputed genius. In 1899, he figured out a way to bypass fossil-fuel-burning power plants and power lines, proving that "free energy" could be harnessed using ionization in the upper atmosphere to produce electrical vibrations. J.P. Morgan, who had been funding Tesla's research, had a bit of buyer's remorse when he realized that free energy for all wasn't as profitable as, say, actually charging people for every watt of energy use. Morgan then drove another nail in free energy's coffin by chasing away other investors, ensuring Tesla's dream would die.

5. Miracle Cancer Cure

Miracle Cancer Cure
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In 2001, Nova Scotian Rick Simpson discovered that a cancerous spot on his skin disappeared within a few days of applying an essential oil made from marijuana. Since then, Simpson and others have treated thousands of cancer patients with incredible success. Researchers in Spain have confirmed that THC, an active compound in marijuana, kills brain-tumor cells in human subjects and shows promise with breast, pancreatic and liver tumors. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, however, classifies marijuana as a Schedule I drug, meaning that it has no accepted medical use, unlike Schedule II drugs, like cocaine and methamphetamine, which may provide medical benefits. What a buzzkill.

6. Water-Powered Vehicles

Water-Powered Vehicles
Despite how silly it sounds, water-fueled vehicles do exist. The most famous is Stan Meyer's dune buggy, which achieved 100 miles per gallon and might have become more commonplace had Meyer not succumbed to a suspicious brain aneurysm at 57. Insiders have loudly claimed that Meyer was poisoned after he refused to sell his patents or end his research. Fearing a conspiracy, his partners have all but gone underground (or should we say underwater?) and taken his famed water-powered dune buggy with them. We just hope someone finally brings back the amphibious car.

7. Chronovisor

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What if you had a device that could see into the future and revisit the past? And what if you didn't need Christopher Lloyd to help you? Father Pellegrino Maria Ernetti, an Italian priest, claimed in the 1960s to have invented what he called a Chronovisor, something that allowed him to witness Christ's crucifixion. The device supposedly enabled viewers to watch any event in human history by tuning in to remnant vibrations that are caused by every action. (His team of researchers and builders included Enrico Fermi, who also worked on the first atomic bomb). On his deathbed, Fermi admitted that he had faked viewings of ancient Greece and Christ's demise, but insisted the Chronovisor, which had by then vanished, still worked. Unsurprisingly, conspiracy theorists say the Vatican is now the likely owner of the original Chronovisor.

8. Rife Devices

Rife Devices
American inventor Royal Rife (his real name), in 1934, cured 14 "terminal" cancer patients and hundreds of animal cancers by aiming his "beam ray" at what he called the "cancer virus." So why isn't the Rife Ray in use today? Barry Lynes, in his 1987 book The Cancer Cure That Worked, details how Rife's invention was discredited by Morris Fishbein, the director of the American Medical Association (AMA), after his offers to buy a share of the technology were rebuffed, although this has never been proven and the AMA has denied it. A 1953 U.S. Senate special investigation concluded that Fishbein and the AMA had conspired with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to suppress various alternative cancer treatments that conflicted with the AMA's pre-determined view that "radium, x-ray therapy and surgery are the only recognized treatments for cancer."

9. Cloudbuster

Wilhelm Reich's estate
In 1953, when severe drought threatened the blueberry harvest in the state of Maine, Dr. Wilhelm Reich, the inventor of a supposed rainmaking device called the Cloudbuster, and he was contracted to bring rain. The Bangor Daily News reported at the time that within hours of setting up the Cloudbuster, nearly ¼ inch of rain had fallen across the area, despite no precipitation in the forecast. Curiously, it does not seem that Reich attempted this feat again and, in 1954, the government put a stop to his work entirely. After Reich's conviction for selling a phone-booth-sized box that he claimed cured the common cold and impotence, in violation of FDA rules, Reich was sentenced to prison, where he soon died. The court also ordered that Reich's inventions, their parts and any writing about them be destroyed.

10. Overunity Generator

Overunity Generator
A number of overunity generators, which produce more energy than they take to run, have surfaced in the past century. Ironically, they have been more trouble than they were worth. In nearly all cases, a supposedly working prototype has been unable to make it to commercial production as a result of various corporate or government forces working against the technology. Recently, the Lutec 1000, an "electricity amplifier," has been making steady progress toward a final commercial version. Will consumers soon be able to buy it, or will it too be suppressed?

11. Cold Fushion

Cold Fushion
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Billions of dollars have been spent researching how to create energy using controlled "hot fusion," a risky and unpredictable line of experimentation. Meanwhile, garage scientists and a fringe group of university researchers have been getting closer to harnessing the power of "cold fusion," which is much more stable and controllable, but far less supported by government and foundation money. In 1989, Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons announced that they had made a breakthrough and had observed cold fusion in a glass jar on their lab bench. To say the reaction they received was chilly would be an understatement. CBS's 60 Minutes described how the resulting backlash from the well-funded hot-fusion crowd sent the researchers underground and overseas, where within a few years their funding dried up, forcing them to drop their pursuit of clean energy.

12. Hot Fushion

Hot Fushion
AFP/Getty Images
Cold fusion isn't the only technology to get buried by hot-headed scientists. When two physicists who were working on the decades-long Tokamak Hot Fusion project at Los Alamos Laboratory stumbled across a cheaper, safer method of creating energy from colliding atoms, they were allegedly forced to repudiate their own discoveries or be fired; the lab feared losing the torrent of government money for Tokamak. In retaliation, the lead researchers created the Focus Fusion Society, which raises private money to fund their research outside of government interference.

13. Magnetofunk and Himmelkompass

Magnetofunk and Himmelkompass
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Nazi scientists spent much of World War II hidden in a covert military base somewhere in the arctic, creating the Magnetofunk. This alleged invention was designed to deflect the compasses of Allied aircraft that might be searching for Point 103, as the base was known. The aircraft pilots would think they were flying in a straight line, but would gradually curve around Point 103 without ever knowing they were deceived. The Himmelkompass allowed German navigators to orient themselves to the position of the sun, rather than magnetic forces, so they could find Point 103 despite the effects of the Magnetofunk. According to Wilhelm Landig, a former SS officer, these two devices were closely guarded secrets of the Third Reich. So closely guarded were they that neither device apparently survived the collapse of Hitler's Germany, although the real tragedy is that no one has ever named their band Magnetofunk.

14. A Safer Cigarette?

A Safer Cigarette?
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In the 1960s, the Liggett & Myers tobacco company created a product called the XA, a cigarette in which most of the stick's carcinogens had been eliminated. Dr. James Mold, Liggett's Research Director, reported in court documents in the case of "The City and County of San Francisco vs. Phillip Morris, Inc.," that Phillip Morris threatened to "clobber" Liggett if they did not adhere to an industry agreement never to reveal information about the negative health effects of smoking. By advertising a "safer" alternative, they would be admitting the dangers of tobacco use. The lawsuit was dismissed on a technicality and Phillip Morris never addressed the accusations. Despite their own scientists' publication of research that showed less cancer in mice exposed to smoke from the XA, Liggett & Myers issued a press released denying evidence of cancer in humans as a result of tobacco use, and the XA never saw the light of day.

15. TENS

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The Transcutaneous Electronic Nerve Stimulation (TENS) device was created to alleviate pain impulses from the body without the use of drugs. In 1974, Johnson & Johnson bought StimTech, one of the first companies to sell the machine, and proceeded to starve the TENS division of money, causing it to flounder. StimTech sued, alleging that Johnson & Johnson purposely stifled the TENS technology to protect sales of its flagship drug, Tylenol. Johnson & Johnson responded that the device never performed as well as was claimed and that it was not profitable. StimTech's founders won $170 Million, although the ruling was appealed and overturned on a technicality. The court's finding that the corporation suppressed the TENS device was never overturned.

16. The Phoebus Cartel

The Phoebus Cartel
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Phillips, GE and Osram engaged in a conspiracy from 1924 to 1939 with the goal of controlling the fledgling light-bulb industry, according to a report published in Time magazine six years later. The alleged cartel set prices and suppressed competing technologies that would have produced longer-lasting and more efficient light bulbs. By the time the cabal dissolved, the industry-standard incandescent bulb was established as the dominant source of artificial light across Europe and North America. Not until the late 1990s did compact fluorescent bulbs begin to edge into the worldwide lighting market as an alternative.

17. The Coral Castle

The Coral Castle
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How did Ed Leedskalnin build the massive Coral Castle in Homestead, Florida, out of giant chunks of coral weighing up to 30 tons each with no heavy equipment and no outside help? Theories abound, including anti-gravity devices, magnetic resonance and alien technology, but the answer may never be known. Leedskalnin died in 1951 without any written plans or clues as to his techniques. The centerpiece of the castle, which is now a museum open to the public, is a nine-ton gate that used to move with light pressure from one finger. After the gate's bearings wore out in the 1980s, a crew of five took more than two weeks to fix it, although they never did get it to work as effortlessly as Leedskalnin's original masterpiece.

18. Hemp Bio-fuel

Hemp Bio-fuel
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The father of our country, George Washington, who is rumored to have said "I cannot tell a lie," was a proud supporter of the hemp seed. Of course, the only thing more suppressed in this country than an honest politician is hemp, which is often mistakenly for marijuana and therefore unfairly maligned. Governmental roadblocks, meanwhile, prevent hemp from becoming the leader in extracting ethanol, allowing environmentally damaging sources like corn to take over the ethanol industry. Despite the fact that it requires fewer chemicals, less water and less processing to do the same job, hemp has never caught on. Experts also lay the blame at the feet of (who else?) Presidential candidates, who kiss up to Iowa corn growers for votes.

marți, 28 februarie 2012

Forks Over Knives

What has happened to us? Despite the most advanced medical technology in the world, we are sicker than ever by nearly every measure. Cases of diabetes are exploding, especially amongst our younger population. About half of us are taking at least one prescription drug and major medical operations have become routine. Heart disease, cancer and stroke are the country's three leading causes of death, even though billions are spent each year to "battle" these very conditions. Millions suffer from a host of other degenerative diseases. Could it be there's a single solution to all of these problems? A solution so comprehensive, but so utterly straightforward, that it's mind-boggling that more of us haven't taken it seriously? FORKS OVER KNIVES examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called "diseases of affluence" that afflict us can be controlled...

What if one simple change could save you from heart disease, diabetes, and cancer? For decades, that question has fascinated a small circle of impassioned doctors and researchers—and now, their life-changing research is making headlines in the hit documentary Forks Over Knives.

Their answer? Eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet—it could save your life. It may overturn most of the diet advice you’ve heard—but the experts behind Forks Over Knives aren't afraid to make waves. In his book Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn explained that eating meat, dairy, and oils injures the lining of our blood vessels, causing heart disease, heart attack, or stroke.

In The China Study, Dr. Colin Campbell revealed how cancer and other diseases skyrocket when eating meat and dairy is the norm—and plummet when a traditional plant-based diet persists. And more and more experts are adding their voices to the cause: There is nothing else you can do for your health that can match the benefits of a plant-based diet. Now, as Forks Over Knives is introducing more people than ever before to the plant-based way to health, this accessible guide provides the information you need to adopt and maintain a plant-based diet.

Forks Over Knives here