Explorations With Dr. Michio Kaku - January 29, 2002

Program Title:
Explorations With Dr. Michio Kaku - January 29, 2002
Series Title:
PRA Archive #: 

Explorations with Dr. Michio Kaku, professor of theoretical physics at the City University of New York, science program. Content: GUEST: DR. ROY J. MATHEW, Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology at Duke University and author of "The True Path, western science and the quest for yoga." [Cambridge, Mass. : Perseus Pub., c2001; ISBN 0738204587 ]. Discussion is about spirituality, drug addiction, the physiology of the human brain, and how western and eastern scientists interpret the mind / body link. Specific topics and biographical figures addressed in the interview are: 1) Early Indian tenets that considered science and philosophy one in the same since both disciplines were created by the same mind 2) Buddhism and Hinduism 3) Germ Theory, the tendency for western science tendency to apply reductionism to explain all natural phenomena 4) Yogis and the ability to dramatically change physiological rhythms 5) Meditation as a technique for silencing the layers of evolution to get at one's core and experience life without external influence 6) The primary purpose behind meditation as a method to seek transcendence rather than to alter bodily functions 7) Drug addiction: short term euphoria gained at the expense of long term damage 8) An exploration of the concept of happiness 9) Spiritual happiness as an enriching substitute for drug happiness 10) The inability of language and psychiatry to properly describe the self and expression of feelings Other topics covered: India has successfully tested the Agni I Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) out to a distance of 700 kilometers at a time when tension with Pakistan appeared to be abating. Pakistan has vowed to match India's arsenal missile for missile and bomb for bomb, a strategy that would propel an arms race wrought with the potential for a collapse. Also mentioned is western involvement in the formation of the crisis, blowback, and the impact of terrorism. Rumors have emanated from a University of Minnesota lab regarding the creation of adult stem cells that have the potential to diversify into heart, skin, liver and other kinds of cells. In principle such a finding could take the heat off of President George W. Bush's decision unpopular decision to limit funding for embryonic stem cell research. A point of caution is that a report has yet to be published and the results still need to be verified. Recent reports have indicated that for various reasons alcohol, tea, and chocolate may be good for you. Scientists at Erasmus University in the Netherlands produced a 6 year study of 5,395 people over the age of 55 and determined that the consumption of 1-3 glasses of alcohol per day led to a 42% decrease in dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Researchers at Penn State University analyzed 66 studies investigating the health benefits of tea and chocolate and have determined that both contain antioxidants known as flavonoids. The flavonoids however are found in varying concentrations and are not regulated in tea or chocolate servings. Another age gene has been isolated in humans and is implicated in extending lifespan. Research has determined that one copy of the klotho gene invites longevity, while two copies reduces it. Mice studies have shown that the absence of the gene can lead to the development of osteoporosis, emphysema, arterial sclerosis, and many other aging disorders. Also another gene for prostate cancer, RNASEL has been found. About 9% of genes have been linked to heredity, meaning that the bulk of them may not be linked. Scientists at John Hopkins University have implanted a silicon chip behind the human eyeball in order to stimulate neurons in blind people. A camera sends video images into a computer that processes information for the new chip. Participants in the program were able to discern faces and large type. A caller asks if the notion of god would interfere with the development of new physical theories that describe the universe. Michio describes the natural forces that a Theory of Everything would serve to unite. He also presents the opinions of leading scientists on the matter of god, citing Albert Einstein, Steven Hawking, and Professor Steven Weinberg.

Date Recorded on: 
January 29, 2002
Date Broadcast on: 
January 29, 2002
Item duration: 
60 min.
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Los Angeles, Pacifica Radio Archive, 2002
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