Sunday, 31 May 2009
Monday, 18 May 2009
The report took me back to reading an amazing, if sometimes depressing, but ultimately uplifting book "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini. It documented the story of 2 women where, over a generation and under successive regimes, the rights of females to exist as independent people were gradually eroded. The point was reached where under a male dominated society they became the property of their families and husbands, to be beaten and even murdered if they "misbehaved". They were forbidden to be on the street without a man with them, and certainly not allowed, as girls, to receive any education whatsoever. Medical treatment was segregated by sex with women being directed to poorly equipped hospitals, often with little medication and no anaesthetic for operations.
Of course the book is technically a work of fiction, but based very much on Afghan history from the 1970`s until recent times and it documents the unbelievably harsh reality of life for so many. The sound of this young girl playing her instrument on the radio was uplifting on another sunny day here on the Costa Blanca. I thought that maybe the sun is shining again in Afghanistan.
Thursday, 14 May 2009
Like other metals, lithium is often present in small quantities in water supplies and a recent study from Japan has found a correlation between naturally present lithium levels and suicide rates in various communities across the area studied - the higher the levels the lower the incidence of suicidal attempts. While the levels were still very low, it was suggested that the “protective” effect accrued from accumulation in the body and its impact on the brain. A previous study from the 1980’s produced a similar result. What does this mean - should we maybe consider adding lithium to the water supply, like fluoride? You can read the fiull article at http://onthecouchwithsteve.com
Sunday, 10 May 2009
This idea of explaining changes in behaviour by understanding changes in hormonal levels in the body and brain is very interesting and reasonably well understood. In psychotherapy many therapists will in an initial session take details of someone's medical history including maybe the last time that their bloods were checked, knowing well that hormonal deficiency or excess can often influence or even be the cause of unhappiness, depression and sometimes inappropriate behaviour. However, an interesting question to me is, does this understanding mean we should excuse “inappropriate" behaviour?
Read the rest of this article at http://www.onthecouchwithsteve.coml/