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Music Can Help You Heal

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There’s always a song for everything. For every mood, desire and setting you can think of. It’s not just you who feels great after a night of karaoke; scientific studies from different psychologists have shown that music has a healing power and helps people in improving their lives.


Chinese culture also uses music as a recovery tool. China’s first medical text, The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine, documents the use of music as therapy.

This text explains how all five elements of nature (earth, water, fire, metal, and wood) have corresponding aspects with things such as the seasons of the year, your internal organs, colours, musical notes, etc.

This specific type of medicine uses the relationship between the internal organs and the five-element correspondences with the sounds of varying musical notes to achieve different healing purposes.

In addition, a study in Taiwan evaluated the effects of the Chinese method of the five element music therapy, on 71 nursing students who suffered from depression. The Internal Journal of Nursing Practice reported that the music group, composed of 31 students, received the musical therapy while the other 40 students were used as controls and maintained their ordinary lifestyles without any musical therapy. They found that there was a significant reduction in levels of depression in the group exposed to the musical therapy, based on the pre- and post-therapy test scores and salivary cortisol levels, than the control group.

Music can be used as a healing tool not only for treating depression but also for treating autism, schizophrenia, and dementia, as well as problems of agitation, anxiety, sleeplessness, and substance misuse, according to Harvard’s Review of Psychiatry Journal (2011).

Sadly, it is not yet known if music therapy can replace other modes of treatment, and more research is yet needed in neuroscience and clinical medicine to find out the long-term effects music therapy has in order to create new strategies with this method.

Whenever you’re feeling a little bit sad or anxious, don’t hesitate to listen to your favourite playlist. Blast it loud and feel great about it.

Alice Moore

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Wakanda IRL — What Could Go Wrong?

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Apparently a lot.

We’re all coming out of Marvel’s latest release on a high. Yes, Black Panther was an amazing movie. Yes, the soundtrack was lit, and yes, it would be really cool if a place like Wakanda actually existed IRL!

Well it does…kind of.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) is lush with resources of cobalt. It’s not the vibranium that was used to make Captain America’s shield, but it’s important nonetheless. The sometimes forgotten metal plays essential roles in our day to day lives. Smartphones, laptops, and electric cars all run off of lithium-ion batteries, all of which use cobalt as a key component. From uses in cancer treatments to the construction of alloys for aircraft engines, we have taken this metal and integrated it into many everyday uses.

Which is great, a little different from Wakanda, where the stores of vibranium were a well kept secret from the rest of the world, despite all the amazing creations that it led to. However, Wakanda as a country was also better off then the DR Congo has ever been.

Colonization by the Europeans in Congo began in the late 15th and early 16th century. From the exploitation of their natural resources, to suffering years of civil unrest, the people of Congo have constantly suffered from times of turmoil. Genocide, slave trading and child labour, are but a a few of the horrors the country has been forced to face. Since 1998, five million people from the DR Congo have died from war or disease. In an article released by The Guardian, it was stated that children as young as the age of seven were being forced to mine for the cobalt that gets used in most household brands today.

As more awareness is created and the realities of the situation in the DR Congo are brought to the forefront, we can only hope that those with the power to make a difference step forward. Apple, Sony and Samsung, all companies that require sources of cobalt for their products, have made claims to take steps against any supplier that violates human rights.

The world was given a chance to get this right the first time. With bountiful resources, a beautiful country with even more beautiful people, the ‘real life’ Wakanda had started off with much opportunity and potential. It took an unstable government, vicious dictators, and unethical capitalists to bring the DR Congo to the state it has now become. Black Panther’s Wakanda paints a radical vision for all of us, of what it could have been.

unsplash-logoChen Hu

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The World Mourns the Loss of a Great Mind: Stephen Hawking

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On March 14th, 2018, the world had to say goodbye to one of the greatest mind’s of our generation, Stephen Hawking.


“It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.” – S. Hawking

Professor Stephen Hawking was diagnosed with a rare case of motor neuron disease at the age of 21 and was only given two years to live. Despite the continual deterioration of his condition, he was able to live out his life to the age of 76 and continue to do the work that he so loved.

Author of renowned A Brief History of Time, and known for his work on relativity and black holes, Hawking was able to take his research to new levels despite being wheelchair bound and forced to use a voice synthesizer to communicate.

According to his official website,

“Professor Stephen Hawking ha[d] thirteen honorary degrees. He was awarded CBE (1982), Companion of Honour (1989) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2009). He [was] the recipient of many awards, medals and prizes, most notably the Fundamental Physics prize (2013), Copley Medal (2006) and the Wolf Foundation prize (1988). He [was] a Fellow of the Royal Society and a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.”

All of his award and acclaims notwithstanding, Hawking was also a loving father to three children who gave the following statement following the passing of their father,

“We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today. He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years.”

The world lost a great mind yesterday and as his close friends and family gather to mourn their loss, hopefully it gives some comfort to know, that he will not soon be forgotten.

unsplash-logoKyle Gregory Devaras

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