Monday, May 19, 2008

butchery products

I saw a program in National Geographic which deeply disturbed me. The segment centered around organ transplantation. This is the process whereby body parts of vital importance towards many human functions are donated to people who need those parts, primarily people whose human organs have become badly damaged due to personal lifestyle or from a compendium of health problems. This in itself seems to be innocent and even quite beneficial towards the propagation and continuum of human life.

What is immensely baffling is the circumstance surrounding these processes. There was one example during the program where an American guy flew to Shanghai, China because he felt the chances he had for finding a new liver there was higher and faster considering he was on a very long waiting list if he had to stay in the United States for an organ donation. In only a span of two weeks he underwent the surgery to acquire the new body part and after several days or a week or so, he was ready to go back to the States, recovering from a successful operation.

This in itself sounds like a medical miracle or a personal success story for any individual at end's wit over the health of his body. But the program takes on an interesting perspective. The doctors based in the States began to ask if there was something the hospitals in China had an advantage at compared to the medical institutions in the States because of the speed with which the patient was able to acquire a healthy organ at so fast a time. The chilling answer to the story was given by a faceless man. He was once a doctor who worked in China but has since emigrated to a European country. Faceless because the man refused to be photographed, or videoed and in addition to that he wore a mask all throughout the interview. His account was terrifying. Because China executed thousands of political prisoners as well as many convicts who crossed the line of the law each year, the government began to find a way to harvest the healthy organs of these individuals in a lucrative trade that will eventually benefit the national treasury. Nurses, doctors, whole medical teams waited on standby during an execution session in some nameless Chinese state. The man said that neither the prisoners nor their relatives had given consent to their body parts being reused on other ailing human beings. This was a breach of human rights in titanic proportions. No wonder, the man is not practicing medicine anymore, lives like a hermit for fear of exposure and retaliation, and has nightmares about the heinous acts he has taken part in. His last message was he was a man of medicine and was supposed to save lives. He could not fathom why he was helping in the butchery of human beings.

We both know the common rule of business. Supply SHOULD increase proportionally with demand. Because more and more people are at one point or another in their lives needing medical aid through the use of body part transplants, then the medical world is scurrying to feed this need mostly because of the lucrative nature of these transactions. People will pay a huge sum to save the lives of the people they love but shouldn't there be a consideration to the ones who are on the other end of the spectrum? The donors, especially the unsuspecting ones? Those who are the victims of this illegal trade, those who do not have a choice? The illegality of how many of these human butcher products are procured makes the whole phenomena inhuman, monstrous and very immoral.

The only thing I can say about this is monitoring of the strictest and highest order has to be done. Due process has to take place before an organ is sold and donated. Individuals at the highest echelon with enough influence and punch as well as people in the lower rung of the ladder should set aside their own selfish motivations to do what they can to aid this fight. This is a fight to give due respect and reverence to the human body from birth until its demise. Given our own choices, we, even down to our graves, deserve the peace literally we have so owed ourselves for a long time. Our destination is six feet under the face of the earth not some horrible bunsen burner or test tube in a clinical facility to be inserted into an individual we did not choose to share a part of our bodies to...

Saturday, May 17, 2008

half of both worlds...

Since we have dabbled in the world of fantasy-reality in my previous entry why not immerse ourselves for a while there? It doesn't hurt to be a child sometimes and throughout my childhood until now, mermaids have been a fixture of my imagination for a long time. These entities are half of the marine world and half of the human world as obviously exhibited by their bodies. I do not know if they are necessarily the best of both worlds! I have no idea TOO if real images of these mythical creatures exist. BUT I don't want to ask the cliche queries of "Do they or don't they exist?"

Personally I want them to exist. It would be a gigantic slap to all the known biological transcripts and studies if such an organism is found and examined. Imagine how it would baffle scientists and experts a like. It would define logic and observation because the scientific world WILL not accept ambiguity. (Although it has embraced the PLATYPUS...go GOOGLE!! LOL) Science wants to be able to explain everything in the realm of physical phenomena and for such a creature to exist it would destroy all concepts biology has built around itself as well perhaps the neighboring sciences of human anatomy and many more! Haha! It would cause such a riot throughout the world, the tangible existence of such a maleficient creature.

The appearance of a living, moving, breathing mermaid would also stir religious issues for sure. Religion respects divinities so much that they are thought of as invisible, unreachable, and out-of-touch. Symbolism would dictate that the mermaid represents many things. The merging of science, fantasy and biological reality is not something the religious sector can take because the human being is the center of all religion. Ambiguities represent the otherworldly, the ethereal heavenly and unseen beings and perhaps the entities we so worship. For a divine creature to appear as a biological specimen will destroy all concepts of religion!

The question I am more curious to ask myself and other people is, "Why do they and have they existed in the annals of men's imagination for eons?" Man's hypnosis to these unusual creatures is perhaps best explained by the fact that we enjoy and embrace fantasy and imaginary worlds when we can! When given the chance, we immerse ourselves in them when the occasion allows us to because there is a little being in us that wants to defy idealism! Because reality is sometimes a little too harsh to deal with and yes admittedly TOO ORDINARY, we want to say, "yes they exist, and we will continue to hunt them down as long as we can!" But don't our subconscious actually REALLY say,"I hope I never find such a creature because it will be the demise of the fantasy and the status of the mermaid in our powerful minds!" We want the mermaid to elude our hands perhaps even forever because we do not want her to go down her pedestal as one of the greatest fixtures of the imaginary part of our existences! She is goddess, icon, and everything that represents beauty, grace, enchantment and even a bit of evil and we do not want her to lose her attributes by becoming just mere biological specimen...
Ha! Now that is a thought! Isn't it?
(note: Thank you to for the beautiful and non-typical depiction of the mermaid)

Friday, May 9, 2008

love affair with the unknown

For as long as i can remember my fascination with the andromorphous, the arcane and indefinable forms of animal life has been very strong and unwavering. When I held a classmate's book of mysteries of the unknown which devoted a couple of pages about unknown and unidentified animalia I was hooked! I guess the more antediluvian their origins the better! The more they deviate from the annals of known animal almanacs, the better for my imagination. It is perhaps their elusiveness, the rarity with which they have been captured for the world to see and perhaps also the possibility that none of them may really exist except only in our creative and curious minds that make them hypnotic!
You may include the coelacanth which is perhaps one of the oldest living fossils in the world, the legendary Loch Ness Monster, sea snakes of massive proportions, giant squids among many others on my most loved creature lists...Most of them are somewhat reptilian by nature owing perhaps to my deep love for anything scaled and lizard-like.

I have scoured hundreds of books, articles and magazines about them and now that one of the most revolutionary sources of research called the internet is right in front of our own faces now, I have pillaged websites to read about my favorite creatures. Some of the resources are plain crap and it's very interesting and noteworthy that there are websites which are critical of them while there are some which have a positive passion towards them. Well anyway for Chrissakes why would someone build a website to disparage something, right? It defeats the purpose of your dedication towards the creation of the site! Of course I'm always for these sorts of people who built the websites as altars to the creature of their dreams.

I can perhaps say that my awe towards them is not singular by nature. I know that a lot of people share this passion of fascination towards them but among the many things I could indulge in I somehow find the time to glance at any sort of material pertaining to them. Pictures are an addiction. A single picture can speak volumes for me and I am constantly on the prowl for images. It's only understandable I guess considering that photographic evidence is pivotal in instigating and anchoring people's beliefs as well as increasing the reliability of the existence of the creature!

One of my biggest dream will be to see with my own eyes any of the creatures that have made my skin crawl or flamed my imagination. I can somehow say that that would be quite the birthday gift! I guess that the fuel to this seemingly eternal hypnotism towards them is the fact that I have yet to fulfill that dream. Ohhh how I wish I could somehow beheld a coelacanth in an obscure zoo here in Cebu! Or genuine photos of the Loch Ness monster are enough for me considering I don't really have plans to fly all the way to Scotland for the insanity but who knows, right? Maybe they are just a click of the camera away, or maybe the unknown depths of the Philippine forests and marine environs hold an entity of great mystery which will add more fodder to my ever-hungry mind?

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