Most People Aren’t Ready for This Genius Animated Film on Society’s Hidden Darkness: IN-SHADOW – A Modern Odyssey

“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”

— Carl Jung

What happens when we drop our masks of identity and return to our human core?

Lubomir Arsov’s groundbreaking short film IN-SHADOW: A Modern Odyssey poses this question through an epic quest into the darkness of Western civilization.

At a mere 13 minutes long, this gorgeously illustrated film embarks on a journey of exploration into the human psyche, bringing society’s dark underbelly to the surface.

If a purpose of art is to “disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed,” as Cesar Cruz once observed, this film is an undeniable masterpiece.

in-shadow film a modern odyssey

The world painted by IN-SHADOW is somewhat akin to the “Upside-Down” in Netflix’s Stranger Things: structurally, everything appears the same as it does in everyday reality, but with a dark twist.

News anchors, politicians, and celebrities, who are normally so groomed and beautiful, warp into grotesque caricatures. The smiles on everyday people are revealed to be masks that cover faces twisted in fear and agony. The world of jobs and careers begins to take on the aesthetic of a prison as people sell their lives for big houses, fancy cars, and the latest hot techno-gadget.

in shadow a modern odyssey animated film 8

Arsov leaves no stone unturned in his critical depiction of society. His ability to capture complex socio-political truths in symbols and images is truly breathtaking.

IN-SHADOW takes on a wide range of issues, from corporate lobbying to the drug war; racial tensions to rape culture; factory farming to neo-colonialism; the military-industrial complex to the corruption of government; from media manipulation to the disconnect and drudgery experienced by everyday people.

in shadow a modern odyssey filim 9

IN-SHADOW removes the masks people wear to reveal the deeper truth at the heart of Western society’s deepest issues: at our core, we are all human. We have complex emotional and psychological needs that we push to the side to assimilate to a faceless system that caters to a profit-obsessed, unlimited-growth economy.

The result is widespread alienation and depression, but to show that suffering is a social taboo. In an effort to fit in with the fictional narrative we have created for our society, everyone struggles to show a happy face to the rest of the world.

in-shadow a modern odyssey 2

Yet, in this culture, one wonders whether anyone can become truly happy until they remove the masks, dive into their unconscious, and mine deep to their inner core: one of love, creativity, and connection to all of life and the universe.

Arsov’s phenomenal short film is so full of symbolism and iconic imagery that it merits several views. You might leave with more questions than you came with. For example: To what extent are we being manipulated on a mass scale? How do we unearth social and cultural roots that stretch back thousands of years? And more importantly, how do we remove these masks for ourselves and tap this inner wellspring of peace, connection, and creativity?

in-shadow a modern odyssey 5

Discovering the shadow is only the beginning. The rest is an unfathomable journey of epic proportions that each individual must undertake for themselves. Peer into the mirror of our collective darkness, but be warned: self-reflection is one of the most difficult tasks we all face. However, as the film’s conclusion suggests, the rewards of self-development are truly wondrous for those who dare the initial glance into the shadow mirror.

Watch IN-SHADOW, a Truly Genius Work of Art

I’ve tried to describe the film for you, but truthfully, there are no words. You simply must watch it. It’s an honor to be able to share this masterwork with all of you:

If you appreciated the film…

Definitely visit the beautiful and provocative IN-SHADOW website and consider buying prints to support Lubomir Arsov’s visionary filmmaking.

The “shadow”—referring to the parts of ourselves we reject, repress, and don’t want to look at—is a term originally coined by Carl Jung, the brilliant Swiss psychotherapist. It’s one of the most important concepts to understand if you truly wish to know yourself, grow, and make a difference in the world.

We’ve explored Jung, the shadow, and even the shadows of “spiritual” people in substantial depth on HighExistence.

============================================================================================

by Jack E Othon

Jack E Othon is the creator of the blog, Radically Enlightened, which is dedicated to expanding global consciousness. She owns an art and clothing company, Dark Whim Designs, with her siblings, Joe and Shane. She spends most of her free time in the Colorado mountains, communing with the forest spirits and making love to nature gods. Find her on Instagram to follow her travels, hiking adventures, and poetic exploits. You can also friend her on Facebook, but don’t expect anything serious to come of that—she is a silly thing.

Magnesium in Right Doses Completely Reverses Depression: Breakthrough Study

Magnesium is already known by many as a tremendous booster of health. It contributes to sound sleep, helps with digestion and constipation, relieves muscle aches, and even improves heart health and migraine headaches – but here’s a shocker: magnesium in small doses leads to an astonishing reversal of depression.

What is Magnesium and Why Do We Need it?

Magnesium is one of the most important elements in the human body. It is a micronutrient and mineral that is involved in thousands of biochemical processes crucial for the proper functioning of the cardiovascular, alimentary, endocrine, and osteoarticular systems, but oddly, it seems absolutely vital to regulating our mood and levels of happiness.

In a breakthrough study conducted by researchers at the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont and published in PLoS ONE has found that just 248mg of magnesium per day leads to an about-face of depression symptoms in study subjects.

New clinical research results show magnesium is effective at addressing symptoms and is safer and easier on the wallet than prescription therapies,” reports Science Daily.

Mounds of Research Proving We Need Magnesium to Combat Depression

Research of this kind regarding magnesium isn’t new, but it stands to reinforce what nutritionists, health coaches, and even some psychologists have been stating for decades.

Another study states this about magnesium and depression:

Anxiety related conditions are the most common affective disorders present in the general population with a lifetime prevalence of over 15%. Magnesium (Mg) status is associated with subjective anxiety, leading to the proposition that Mg supplementation may attenuate anxiety symptoms.”

And this study explains that:

After adjusting for all potential confounders, the strength of the association of very low magnesium intake with depression was statistically significant (RR = 1.16; 95% CI, 1.06-1.30).”

Or how about this study which states that the daily consumption of 500 mg magnesium:

“. . . tablets for ≥8 wk by depressed patients suffering from magnesium deficiency leads to improvements in depression status and magnesium levels.”

So, while not all the studies agree on the exact amount of magnesium that we need each day to combat depression, they repeat over and over in hundreds of additional studies, that depleted magnesium levels contribute to depression.

Why We’re All Magnesium Deficient 

Depleted Soil

Why are so many of us magnesium deficient, aside from the fact that many vital micronutrients and minerals we need have been raped from the soil via industrial farming practices, and by adding non-organic, toxic chemical fertilizers and herbicides to the very soil which must grow our food?

Too Much Sugar

We also eat too much sugar. Is this a coincidence? The sugar industry has been hiding the effects of sugar on us for decades – and one of those effects is that sugar eats up our magnesium stores.

Refined sugar causes you to waste most vitamin and minerals in the body, mainly B-Vitamins, Potassium, Magnesium, Zinc and Manganese. Sugar raises CO2 levels in the blood, which causes you to go to bicarbonate stores which buffer it, causing a depletion of minerals like magnesium.

Stress

Another culprit is stress – both mental and physical stress, with its related continuous flow of adrenaline, uses up our magnesium stores rapidly. Adrenaline affects heart rate, blood pressure, vascular constriction and muscle contraction— actions that all demand steady supplies of magnesium for smooth function, and without it you can guess what happens.

We also require magnesium to create serotonin, one of the “happy hormones” which prevents depression. Stress causes less serotonin to be created, and replaces it with cortisol and other stress hormones. Stress and depression are inextricably linked. Without enough magnesium we haven’t got a chance at fighting depression naturally.

Detoxification

Magnesium is a powerful detoxifier. It removes everything from heavy metals, to glyphosate and other herbicides from our bodies, as well as thousands of environmental toxins and metabolic toxins. If we become overly toxic, due to a lack of magnesium, we are more likely be depressed as the brain suffers from inflammation it cannot overcome.

Is it any wonder we suffer from the following additional diseases, aside from depression, all of which are linked to magnesium deficiency?

  • Gastrointestinal disorders: Prolonged diarrhea, Crohn’s disease, malabsorption syndromes, celiac disease, surgical removal of a portion of the intestine, and intestinal inflammation due to radiation may all lead to magnesium depletion.
  • Renal disorders (magnesium wasting): Diabetes mellitus and long-term use of certain diuretics (see Drug interactions) may result in increased urinary loss of magnesium. Multiple other medications can also result in renal magnesium wasting.
  • Chronic alcoholism: Poor dietary intake, gastrointestinal problems, and increased urinary loss of magnesium may all contribute to magnesium depletion, which is frequently encountered in alcoholics.
  • Age: Several studies have found that elderly people have relatively low dietary intakes of magnesium. Intestinal magnesium absorption tends to decrease with age and urinary magnesium excretion tends to increase with age; thus, suboptimal dietary magnesium intake may increase the risk of magnesium depletion in the elderly.

How Much Magnesium Do I Need And Where Can I Get It?

So how much magnesium should you take? General dosage recommendations range from about 3 to 10 milligrams per pound of body weight. Experiment with a supplement and you’ll know exactly how much you need.

You can also consume natural sources of magnesium which can be found in foods like:

  • Spinach
  • Chard
  • Almonds
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Black Beans
  • Avocado
  • Coriander
  • Salmon
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Yogurt or Kefir
  • Figs
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Banana
  • Cashews
  • Goat Cheese
  • Artichokes

Also, magnesium is the central molecule in chlorophyll – called the lamp of life,” so any plant-based food high in chlorophyll should also help boost magnesium stores it the body to fight depression, along with dozens of other diseases.

By Christina Sarich Christina Sarich is a musician, yogi, humanitarian and freelance writer who channels many hours of studying Lao Tzu, Paramahansa Yogananda, Rob Brezny, Miles Davis, and Tom Robbins into interesting tidbits to help you Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and *See the Big Picture*. Her blog is Yoga for the New World . Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing The Body And Mind Through The Art Of Yoga.

The Pineal Gland: One Of The Biggest Secrets Kept From Humanity

Humans are bestowed with a certain part of their brain known as the pineal gland or also known as our third eye. The reason as to why it is called pineal is for it’s shape, like a pine cone.

A tiny pine cone that is in charge of producing serotonin derivative melatonin that has to deal with our hormones that affect the modulation of sleep/wake patterns, including our seasonal functions.

This tiny pine cone can be found near the center of the brain in place between the two hemispheres.

The reason as to why higher up’s keep this information from people is so they do not find out the fullest potential that this part of us has.

The pineal gland is essentially the portal between the physical and spiritual world for humans. When activated, the sensation of euphoria and oneness fills the persons mind, giving them a sense of all knowing. One can achieve this activation through yoga, meditation and variety of other occult methods.

Once activated, that person is able to freely travel to other dimensions, or otherwise referred to as astral projection or remote viewing.

Through ancient methods and advance practices, one could even control the thoughts and actions of other people in the physical world.

All though this seems impossible, the former Soviet Union governments as well as various shadow organizations have been researching these effects for a really long time, keeping the information under lock from the public eye.

The reason we are unable to achieve this amazing feat within our brains is because of the amount of sodium fluoride we digest on a daily basis. The pineal gland absorbs most of the sodium fluoride that enters our bodies.

This essentially dumbs the pineal gland down by no longer being able to balance our hormonal processes in the body.

In fact, the United States water supply contains 90% of fluoride and other various components. Not even the water filters you buy at the super market are able to filter out fluoride.

One way to combat this is reverse osmosis or water distillation, water distillation being the cheaper option.

Not to claim ourselves as conspiracy theorists, but mainly our deep concern for the disconnect between our spirituality and reality all together.

Rick Strassman, M. D. believes DMT is highly connected to the pineal gland:

I was drawn to DMT because of its presence in all of our bodies. I believed the source of this DMT was the mysterious pineal gland, a tiny organ situated in the center of our brains. Modern medicine knows little about this gland’s role, but it has a rich metaphysical history. Descartes, for example, believed the pineal was the ‘seat of the soul’ and both Western and Eastern mystical traditions place our highest spiritual center within its confines.”

Inspired by: Spirit Science

New Study Reveals Another Astonishing Difference Between The Brains Of Meditators & Non-Meditators

Human knowledge is constantly evolving and changing, yet most of us believe scientific theories to be fact rather than working understandings of a topic. But they are theories, and our understanding of ‘what is’ continues to change. These are always difficult times, because long-held beliefs enforced by scientific dogma are, for many people, difficult to adjust or relinquish. Anger and disbelief are common reactions, no matter how thoroughly an old theory is disproven. Just think back to when we discovered the Earth was round, not flat, or that Earth was not the center of the universe — the Catholic Church went so far as to persecute and even put to death scientists and ‘free-thinkers’ who opposed them.

Fast forward to today and, fortunately, much has changed. Although several industries that we rely upon are plagued by corruption, fraud, and disinformation, some would argue that it’s not as bad as it used to be, as evinced by the scientific study of concepts once deemed to be spiritual ‘nonsense’ by the community, like meditation, or non-material science.

Over the past few years alone, a wealth of scientific data has outlined the many benefits meditation can have on our biology, furthering strengthening the scientific validity of the mind-body connection.

For example, an eight-week study conducted by Harvard researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) determined that meditation can literally rebuild the brain’s grey matter in just eight weeks. It’s the very first study to document that meditation produces changes over time in the brain’s grey matter. They also released a study showing that meditation can have a significant impact on clinical symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).  The study showed that elicitation of the relaxation response (a physical state of deep rest that changes the physical and emotional responses to stress) improves symptoms in all these disorders. It was also recently discovered that meditation creates a distinct network of anti-aging genes and improves cellular health.

This time, new research from the UCLA School of Medicine’s Department of Neurology has shown that long-term meditators have younger brains, with higher concentrations of tissue in the brain regions most depleted by aging. The study found that meditation can protect against the decline we normally see occurring through old age and keep our brains young.

According to the study, “On average, the brains of long-term meditators were 7.5 years younger at age 50 than the brains of non-meditators, and an additional 1 month and 22 days younger for every year after 50.”

Pretty remarkable, isn’t it? Some showed a brain that is a full decade younger.

The study used brain imaging data from a previous study that had examined the impact of meditation on cortical thickness. To compare the brains of meditators aged 50 and over to the ones of non-meditating controls, they went through the data. Both groups included 22 women and 28 men with an average age of 51.4 years. Meditators had close to 20 years of meditation experience on average, though experienced ranged from 4 to 46 years.

A press release by the university explains further:

It is important to note that this study relied on estimates of brain change based on age and not actual values. Although these findings are consistent with prior research that detected significant differences in brain structure among meditators compared to non-meditating controls, results of the present study are inferential, and do not answer questions regarding how many years of meditation are necessary to attain this effect, or whether structural brain change directly corresponds to cognitive, behavioral, or psychosocial functioning.

The authors conclude by hypothesizing several different explanations for the results they observed. Firstly, meditation could be stimulating growth in neural structures and promote increased connectivity and efficiency within neural networks. Secondly, it “buffers the brain and nervous system against the deleterious effects of chronic stress, which may reduce pro-inflammatory response, stimulate telomerase activity, and inhibit age-related brain change”

This is precisely why these practices are being introduced into the workplace and at school.

These current findings can now be added to a long and growing list suggesting that meditation (along with other mindfulness-based practices) does wonders for our biology, and is another great example of how, sometimes, we don’t need scientists to validate something that is clearly already known. This isn’t the first time ancient wisdom has been validated by modern science, and it certainly won’t be the last.

How to Meditate

A common misconception about meditation is that you have to sit a certain way or do something in particular to achieve the various benefits that it can provide. All you have to do is place yourself in a position that is most comfortable to you. It could be sitting cross-legged on the floor, relaxing in a chair, or lying down in a bed — it’s your choice.

Another common misconception about meditation is that you have to “try” to empty your mind. One important factor I enjoyed reading from the study mentioned above is that participants were engaged in “non-judgmental awareness of sensations, feelings and state of mind.” When meditating, you shouldn’t try to “empty” your mind. Instead, try to let your thoughts, feelings, and whatever emotions you are experiencing at the time flow. Don’t judge them and don’t attach to them; just let them come and go and recognize that they are transitory.

I also believe that meditation is a state of being/mind more than anything else. One does not have to sit down for half an hour and “meditate,” so to speak, in order to reap the benefits of it, or to be engaged in the practice itself. One can be engaged in meditation while walking, for example, or while preparing for sleep. Throughout the day, one can resist judging their thoughts, letting them flow until they are no more, or just be in a constant state of peace and self awareness. Contrary to popular belief, there is more than one way to meditate.

“You will have to understand one of the most fundamental things about meditation: that no technique leads to meditation. The old so-called techniques and the new scientific bio-feedback techniques are the same as far as meditation is concerned.Meditation is not a byproduct of any technique. Meditation happens beyond mind. No technique can go beyond mind.”

– Osho

That being said, partaking in the style of meditation that involves actively sitting down, breathing, and concentrating on quieting your mind or on a specific intent can be particularly helpful. The following article can help you with that: “How To Meditate: 6 Methods That Can Get Anyone Meditating.

To read more articles from Collective Evolution on meditation, click HERE.

China: Say bye-bye babies, hello ‘Man with the Iron Crotch’! Kung fu pro shows ball-breaking stamina

For over ten years, Master Wei Yaobin has built a reputation as an ‘Iron Crotch Kung Fu’ master in the Chinese city of Luoyang, where he owns and runs a Kung Fu studio, teaching the art of how to take a powerful blow to nether-regions.

In ‘Iron Crotch Kung Fu’, combatants subject themselves to strong blows and aim to build up resistance with training, thinking it is important for male sexual health. ‘Iron Crotch Kung Fu’ enthusiasts say the practice could cure erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.

Master Wei says that Iron Crotch Kung Fu was an exclusive practice and that only family members could previously inherit it. “We want it to be more popular and accepted by public,” Master Wei said.

The practice still attracts hundreds of would-be-masters every year, despite scientific research lacking in whether or not it’s the best way to master one’s crotch.