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This week: Think, Believe, Heal?Edited by: Shannon
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Welcome to the Short Stories Newsletter. I am Shannon and I'm your editor this week.
Keep reading for your chance to claim an exclusive trinket!
"If you believe you can, you probably can. If you believe you won't, you most assuredly won't. Belief is the ignition switch that gets you off the launching pad." ~ Denis Waitley, speaker, productivity consultant, and best-selling author
We've all heard the word "placebo." In scientific studies, there are two groups of participants: a treatment group and a control group. The control group is given sugar pills or saline injections while the treatment group is given doses of the medication being studied, but both groups are told they are receiving the medicine. Oftentimes the control group experiences the same positive medicinal effects experienced by the treatment group because they believe they are being treated. This is an example of the mind's power over body health. This is the Placebo Effect.
But have you ever heard of the Nocebo Effect? "Put simply, it is the phenomenon in which inert substances or mere suggestions of substances actually bring about negative effects in a patient or research participant. For some, being informed of a pill or procedure’s potential side effects is enough to bring on real-life symptoms" (1).
As a nurse, I've seen how the mind influences outcomes, and I've seen it both ways: patients with positive attitudes who receive a terminal diagnosis not only live but thrive because they believe they will; patients with negative attitudes receive a terminal diagnosis and are given two months to live. They get sicker and die two months later.
What's going on here?
Read the comments below this video on YouTube for individual testimonials
Art reflects life, and like us, our characters range from positive optimists to negative pessimists. They are diagnosed with illnesses and terminal diseases, but how do they respond? How do they wrap their heads around such news? Have you written a story about how the mind heals the body? Has your protagonist healed herself with the power of positive thinking? Share your thoughts and ideas about this week's topic and I will include them in next month's newsletter.
"What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives, we need to stretch our minds."
~ Wayne Dyer, speaker and bestselling author
Thank you for reading.
P.S. Every registered author who shares their ideas and/or creative endeavors relating to or inspired by this week's topic will receive an exclusive trinket. I will retire this month's limited-edition trinket at 11:59 p.m. WDC time on Tuesday, December 24, 2019, when my next short stories newsletter goes live.
1. What Is the Nocebo Effect?
Mind Over Medicine: The Awesome Power Of The Mind To Heal The Body
The Power of Placebo: How Our Brains Can Heal Our Minds and Bodies
The Science of Healing Thoughts
7 Ways to Use Your Mind to Strengthen and Heal Your Body
Spontaneous Remission Project
I hope you enjoy this week's featured selections. I occasionally feature static items by members who are no longer with us; some have passed away while others simply aren't active members. Their absence doesn't render their work any less relevant, and if it fits the week's topic I will include it.
Thank you, and have a great week!
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The following is in response to "Roko's Basilisk"
Kotaro writes: A super intelligent AI would ignore us and wouldn’t announce its existence. It wouldn’t want to associate with such inferior beings. They might wipe us out, but that wouldn’t have been their intention. Like me stepping unaware on bugs while walking. This is one explanation for Fermi’s Paradox or The Eerie Silence.
W.D.Wilcox writes: Excellent
Angus writes: Excellent Newsletter about the robot world and AI, Shannon! I watched that robot do the Rubik's Cube on the News! I'll definitely have to check out 'Summer Frost'. Looks interesting/frightening! I knew/know something like that has?/will happen one day! AI has come a long way baby. Maybe a little too far!
dragonwoman writes: I wrote one tale about a man who invented a machine that could tell evil people from good. It ended up eating most of the dignitaries at the launch of it.
the Wordy Jay writes: Hmm . . . y'know what? I don't believe AI will ever take over the universe. Not even by a long shot. If ever a malevolent AI being manifests itself, odds are that it's nothing more than a highly sophisticated puppet manipulated by a devious programmer in the shadows. Just my two cents!
DuhhFactor writes: I think Elon Musk is right. If we can turn an AI robot into a genocidal maniac within 24 hours than what does that say as us for a race. The only way an AI bot would want to harm people is if the people it served were inherently evil, after all, it will grow to adapt to its surroundings, but if we were peaceful as a race, on the whole, it would respect us and not WANT to harm its masters.
50K in 29 days writes: Shannon You come up with some of the most thought provoking newsletters. I loved the point that was posted. I loved the early movies about AI: Short Circuit, WAR Games, the Bicentennial Man, and I'm sure there are others I missed. I see there is an attempt to bypass God and create a AI that will be human in its nature, without a conscience or is it the need to prove there is no difference between man and animal/AI. The stories that are created can be funny, scary and intriguing. The latter seems to end like the former. What is it in humans to think they can replicate creation? It can't be done. In stories you can Make anything happen, but there has to be some basis for it. Magic can't happen. No one can create something from nothing, except on paper.
Jeff writes: Daemon by Daniel Suarez was a great book (and the first in the series) about an AI taking really frightening steps to build its strength and exert influence over the human world. It's kind of like Ready Player One if James Halliday had decided that, instead of having his avatar create a quest, he wanted it to cleanse the human world of its weaknesses.
Jeannie writes: No, I have never written about any artificial intelligence. After seeing Will Smith's "I, Robot" which scared me plenty, I might consider writing a story about AI's.
Microsoft's AI bot 'Tay' having a Twitter account, an Instagram account, and a Facebook account, and even managing to communicate with other users boggles my mind. I wonder how it all went so wrong and why they canceled them all? Scary!
Princess Megan Rose writes: Sometimes technology is scary. When technology is used for the good of mankind it is great. Espionage, blackmail, and hacking are not good. Nicely written and informative. Robots can be a good thing. I enjoyed reading this. May technology always be for the good of mankind.
Schnujo Won NaNo! writes: The Roko's Basilisk newsletter was interesting, enlightening, and terrifying. I never thought about AI blackmailing us. Though I got the impression that the fear was that we've now given them the idea, but since blackmail already is a thing, I think they would have figured it out for themselves eventually. I'm especially concerned that so many people in the know with AI have places to go when it all comes collapsing down. Not comforting! Thank you for this newsletter. I need to go search for some property in the middle of nowhere now.
sindbad writes: This is nice and educative article. I have limited knowledge on artificial intelligence and it's contribution towards global development. I am sure we will have some precautionary measures to safeguard us.
Lilli writes: I have read some creepy stories about AI, for sure. I've also had some interesting conversations with Alexa (Amazon Echo), lol. Cool NL, great job, and filled with food for thought! Thank you!
eyestar writes: Oh wow! This is rather scarey! I have heard my friend say that her cell phone siri sometimes answers something she says..out of the blue. Thanks for bringing this interesting...not so sci fi reality to our attention. Nope, never wrote about it. Not a techy. LOL
❄️ BK ☃️ Winter 🌲 writes: Is the problem AI or programmers and history of mankind? What if the only data you feed it is the Bible? I want to see what AI would do with just that. Of course, you really should feed it what has not been transcribed, but original text.
We should live in fear of technology because we become dependent. Whatever direction the world goes, will our kids be prepared? I think mind control starts with addiction. Anyone who does not buy in will struggle.
dragonwoman writes: I'm sure regulatory bodies or constraints would be enough if the machines took over the asylum, no doubt with help from dissatisfied AE developers. The closest I came writing about the subject is my story called: "Mr. Mulligatawny's Machine."
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