Blog Archive

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Metallica - Enter Sandman [Official Music Video] The Sub-conscience, or the unconscious mind, is where we are one third of every day. Forgive us for our fear of Night.

Lana Del Rey - White Mustang (Lyrics / Lyric Video) [Official Audio] Packin' all my things for the summer Lyin' on my bed, it's a bummer 'Cause I didn't call when I got your number But I liked you a lot Slippin' on my dress in soft filters Everybody said you're a killer But I couldn't stop the way I was feelin' The day your record dropped * The day I saw your white Mustang Your white Mustang The day I saw your white Mustang Your white Mustang * Caught up in my dreams and forgettin' I've been actin' like armageddon 'Cause you held me in your arms just a little too tight That's what I thought Summer's meant for lovin' and leavin' I was such a fool for believin' that you Could change all the ways you've been livin' But you just couldn't stop * The day I saw your white Mustang Your white Mustang The day I saw your white Mustang Your white Mustang * You're revvin' and revvin' and revvin' it up And the sound, it was frightenin' And you were gettin' a part of that You're gonna hit me like lightnin' * White Mustang Your white Mustang The day I saw your white Mustang Said you're a wild mustang * You're gonna hit me like lightnin' You're gonna hit me like lightnin'

Lana Del Rey - Serial Killer - Lyrics - Wish I may, wish I might Find my one true love tonight Do you think that he could be you? If I pray really tight Get into a fake bar fight While I'm walking down the avenue If I lay really quiet I know that what I do isn't right I can't stop what I love to do So I murder love in the night Watching them fall one by one, they fight Did you think you'll love me too? [Hook] Baby I'm a sociopath Sweet serial killer On the warpath Cause I love you just a little too much I love you just a little too much You can see me drinking Cherry Cola Sweet serial killer I left a love note Said you know I love the thrill of the rush You know I love the thrill of the rush [Breakdown] (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) Do it for the thrill of the rush Love you just a little too much, much (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) I love you just a little too much Love you just a little too much, much [Verse 2] My black fire's burning bright Maybe I'll go out tonight We can paint the town in blue I'm so hot, I ignite Dancing in the dark and I shine Like a light I'm luring you Sneak up on you really quiet Whisper, "Am I what your heart desires?" I can be your ingenue Keep you safe and inspired Baby, let your fantasies unwind We can do what you want to do [Hook] Baby I'm a sociopath Sweet serial killer On the warpath Cause I love you just a little too much I love you just a little too much You can see me drinking Cherry Cola Sweet serial killer I left a love note Said you know I love the thrill of the rush You know I love the thrill of the rush [Breakdown] (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) Do it for the thrill of the rush Love you just a little too much, much (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) I love you just a little too much Love you just a little too much, much [Bridge] [2x] Just have fun (Wanna play you like a Gameboy) I don't want one (What's the thrill of the same toy?) La-la, la-la, la, la-la, la-la, lie down, down Oh! [Hook] Baby I'm a sociopath Sweet serial killer On the warpath Cause I love you just a little too much I love you just a little too much You can see me drinking Cherry Cola Sweet serial killer I left a love note Said you know I love the thrill of the rush You know I love the thrill of the rush [Breakdown] (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) Do it for the thrill of the rush Love you just a little too much, much (You send me right to heaven) Sweet serial killer (I guess I'll see him over) I love you just a little too much Love you just a little too much, much

Metallica - King Nothing [Official Music Video] The Forest Spirit 森の精神 Mori no seishin 精神 Seishin: spirit, mind, soul, heart, intention

A Guide to the Otherworldly Island of Yakushima by John Wogan for The New York Times Style Magazine

Where to stay, eat, and explore on the remote subtropical island off Japan's southern coast.
From left: Yakushima's rocky, verdant coastline; the mossy cedar forest of Shiratani Unsuikyo.CreditLauryn Ishak for The New York Times
A hilltop villa at Sankara Hotel and Spa.


Sankara Hotel & Spa

Shrouded by rain forest and perched on a hilltop overlooking the East China Sea, Sankara is by far the best high-end hotel option on the island. Comprising a series of detached, ryokan-style villas, the hotel combines traditional Japanese architecture with modern touches: polished teak floors and furniture, a 24-meter-long infinity pool and unusually large guest rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows that frame sweeping ocean views. One of the property’s two restaurants, Ayana, serves French-inflected Japanese cuisine using local ingredients — Yakushima mackerel with a yam terrine; steamed snapper with mille-feuille-style lotus root — while the second, Okas, is more explicitly French, offering experimental dishes that change daily, like squid mousse with seaweed cream sauce and fried baby sardines and Kagoshima pork rillettes with a potato soufflé.

Soyotei Guesthouse

A family-run, 11-room wooden ryokan on the island’s remote, sparsely populated northwestern coast, Soyotei is the place to stay if you plan to see the island’s famed loggerhead and green turtles that nest at nearby Nagata Beach — a five-minute walk away — from mid-May to August; if you visit later in the season, between August and October, you can watch tiny hatchlings making their way from the shore to the sea. Each room features woven tatami-mat floors and traditional futons for sleeping, while the simply decorated wooden dining room serves home-cooked meals consisting of grilled fish or sashimi, rice, tofu and pickled vegetables. There are also on-site hot springs, where guests can bathe in a traditional Japanese onsen, to combat the sometimes damp, chilly evenings. 011-81-997-45-2819

From left: the restaurant Vita Kitchen in Mugio; a dessert at Umi-no Cottage Tida on Yakushima's south coast.



A five-minute walk from Miyanoura port — the first point of entry for many visitors traveling by high-speed ferry from Kagoshima — this laid-back neighborhood restaurant serves exactly what you want after the four-hour journey. Regular menu items include supremely fresh mackerel sashimi, fried filleted tobiuo (flying fish) and prawns, as well as a set lunch consisting of tonkatsu — a fried pork cutlet and popular Japanese comfort food — served with miso soup, rice and chawanmushi, a creamy, savory steamed egg custard. 011-81-997-42-2721

Vita Kitchen

Nestled on a leafy hillside in Mugio, a tiny village on Yakushima’s southeastern coast, Vita Kitchen occupies a sweetly picturesque white wooden clapboard house framed by ferns and palms. It serves locally grown produce — broccoli, radishes, carrots, potatoes, basil, shiso — and locally sourced meat, including black pork from Kagoshima, chicken from nearby Sakurajima and prawn and flying fish caught a stone’s throw away in the East China Sea — all used in dishes ranging from vibrantly colorful salads to pastas, quiches and stews. 011-81-997-47-3478

Umi-no Cottage Tida

Although primarily a hotel — offering rustic, wood-cabin accommodations with traditional Japanese cast-iron goemon-buro outdoor bathtubs — this exceptionally serene property on Yakushima’s south coast also has one of the island’s best restaurants. Its owner and chef, Yasutaka Nerome, changes the menu daily depending on what’s fresh and in season, but sample dishes include grilled eggplant and shiitake mushrooms, seared venison — the island is home to a large population of Japanese deer — tsukemono (pickled vegetables), and simple, fresh sashimi platters. When weather permits, guests can dine on the restaurant’s shaded wooden porch, which looks out over the sea.

Cheese plates from Takeda Sangyo.


Takeda Sangyo

The team of craftspeople at this wood shop and store, just north of central Anbo, has been carving fragrant Yakusugi (Japanese cedar wood) from the forests of Yakushima into richly polished cups, plates and jewelry boxes for nearly 60 years. In addition to browsing the shelves of handmade Yakusugi toys, ornaments and home accessories — all distinguished by their warm, nut-brown hue and wavelike grain — shoppers can participate in a chopstick making workshop. Under the guidance of an expert woodworker, each student learns how to shape a block of wood into usable utensils that are then packaged as a keepsake to take home.
From left: stone baths at Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen; the Shiratani Unsuikyo forest.Credit© Yakushima Town Office


Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen

The three stone baths at this outdoor onsen are carved into the rock of Yakushima’s southern shoreline and are naturally filled by both the tide and a warming sulfur-rich hot spring. Worth a visit as much for the ocean view as for the therapeutic soak, the baths are only accessible twice a day, during low tide — they’re otherwise covered by the ocean — and if you arrive early enough, you can enjoy the eerie experience of watching the water level slowly rise around you. Payment operates on an honor system; visitors leave 100 yen, about one dollar, in a designated box. 011-81-997-43-5900

Shiratani Unsuikyo

A fantasy land of dense, mossy forest made up of ancient cedar trees (some thousands of years old), trickling streams and the occasional white-spotted sika deer, this expansive nature park in the center of the island is what draws many visitors to Yakushima in the first place. Rich with mythical symbolism, it has served as an inspiration for Japanese animated filmmakers like Hayao Miyazaki — see, for example, the enchanted forest of “Princess Mononoke.” And a series of hiking trails and footpaths have historical significance, too. It’s possible to trace routes trekked by inhabitants of the island from Japan’s Edo period, from the 17th- to mid-19th centuries.

Metallica - The Day That Never Comes [Official Music Video] [HD]

A Real-Life Enchanted Forest by Hanya Yanagihara for The New York Times Style Magazine

CreditChrystel Lebas

  • IN ORDER TO see one of the oldest living trees on earth in one of the oldest evergreen forests in the world, you must first fly two hours from Tokyo to the town of Kagoshima on Kyushu, which is the southern- and westernmost of Japan’s four major islands. From there, you board a little twin-propeller plane for another short flight south to Yakushima, which appears on maps as a near-perfect circle, the last piece of significant landmass before the Okinawa archipelago, another hour’s flight south.
    If you haven’t visited Japan — and probably even if you have — you have likely never heard of Yakushima. The island, which has a population of just 13,100 and is less than 200 square miles, is distinguished by its curious ecosystem. The eastern side, where my friend and I landed, is semitropical: The road is edged with giant bromeliads and chusan palm and camellia bushes whose fallen petals paint the tarmac with fuchsia. The houses are built of sun-bleached painted wood and corrugated tin, much like the houses on the northern side of Oahu, in Hawaii, where I grew up, and there are dragonfruit trees, with their cacti-like, three-planed leaves and spiny pink fruits, and trees bearing two different kinds of oranges — the sour-sweet ponkan and the thick-skinned, meatier tankan — that, along with flying fish, are the island’s culinary specialty.
    But just eight miles south (albeit a 45-minute drive; you must take the single road that laps around the island’s perimeter, as most of its forested interior is unpassable, protected by its Unesco status) is the 1,000-acre Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine, which is probably the reason you’ve come to Yakushima in the first place. Here, atop the 800-meter mountain, the air is damp and chilly, and smells sharp and piney and sweet, and in place of palms and succulents are trees, so many that from the air, the area appears as a dense block of dark green, like an occluded tourmaline. The trees are, most of them, Cryptomeria japonica, a cedar-like species endemic to Japan known as sugi. What makes this forest exceptional, though, is that many of its trees are yaku sugi, which means they are at least 1,000 years old, and some are jomon sugi, which means they are thought to be at least 2,200 years old.

    Yakushima, one of Japan’s southernmost islands before the Okinawa archipelago, has been settled since the Jomon period (14,000-300 B.C.). Today, much of the island, whose inland is thickly wooded, is protected by Unesco, its forests undisturbed by commercial activity.CreditChrystel Lebas
    There are various hiking paths you can walk through this forest; the shortest takes an hour. The longest takes four. All the paths are deceptively easy to begin with, leading you past a furious waterfall that empties into a series of pools so cold and clear and blue that you can see the river rocks beneath them glittering with what might be glints of mica. Within minutes, though, you are submerged in the forest, a change so sudden and complete that it is as if you have been gulped, whole, by a great beast. Gone are the sounds of water, the sight of clouds overhead, the smell of wet rocks. What there are instead are sugi. Unlike in many other forests, where trees share space with ground, here there is no ground, or not much of it. Instead, there are trees, their roots buckling the floor into petrified hillocks, and moss, which is lime green and springy, covering the sugi trunks like a fur. There is sunlight, but even it is greenish, as if filtered through a screen of chlorophyll.

    It is not a normal forest, in other words, but despite this, it is a familiar one. Not because it looks like anyplace you’ve been — but because it resembles, uncannily, someplace you might have seen: the realm of “Princess Mononoke,” the animated masterpiece that is largely set in a forest thick with ancient trees and ancient gods, where the struggle between nature and man — and for Japan’s very soul — is waged.

    The Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine is a dense forest that’s home to some of the island’s spectacular yaku sugi (the designation for a 1,000-plus-year-old example of the endemic cedarlike tree) and jomon sugi (a 2,200-plus-year-old tree).CreditChrystel Lebas
    “PRINCESS MONONOKE” (1997) is the director Hayao Miyazaki’s eighth feature-length film. Miyazaki, who is 77 and lives outside of Tokyo, is the greatest animator in history, the sumptuousness of his art matched only by the complexity and ambiguity of his stories. Some of Miyazaki’s films are, at least visually, more lighthearted and joyful than others, but death — its inevitability, its persistence — is always present. His first international hit, 1988’s “My Neighbor Totoro,” is the story of a father and his two young daughters moving into a traditional wood-and-shoji house in the Japanese countryside, and the towering, benevolent monster of the title — part owl, part bear, with a touch of beaver in his nimble, surprisingly dainty claws — who befriends the little girls but who is invisible to adults. The delight of the film is Totoro himself, who is at once adorable and faintly threatening, and the other creatures who populate his world, in particular a large, grinning, centipede-legged cat that also doubles as a magical bus, his flank opening, woundlike, to allow Totoro and his human friends to climb aboard. But what makes the film troubling is an absence: the girls’ mother, away in a hospital, likely suffering from tuberculosis. The ending — the girls perched high in a tree, watching their mother through a window — is pleasant, but offers no reassurances: Are the girls seeing their mother for the last time? Does she even exist anymore, or is Totoro their projection, a source of comfort they’ve invented to replace one taken from them?
    But if the ambiguities of “Totoro” are possible to ignore, those of “Mononoke” are not. The tale is undated (and at any rate occurs in that fairy-tale realm of collapsed eras and unpinnable ahistoricism) but Miyazaki has said it takes place at the end of the Muromachi period (1392-1573), a time of great domestic unrest and civil war, when three powerful daimyo, or feudal lords, battled for supremacy under the powerful shogunate and enfeebled emperor. Miyazaki’s vision evokes the chaos of this moment: the deep clannishness of country people; the roving packs of samurai, now homeless and jobless, forced to become raiders; monks moonlighting as mercenaries. It is a fabulist portrait of Japan at its most inward and isolated, 300 years before it was forced to open its ports to the world, after a millennia of self-imposed exile.

    CreditT magazine
    It would certainly be easy to read the film as an ecological allegory. The hero is Ashitaka, the prince of a small, diminished ethnic tribe called the Emishi who is forced to kill an enormous boar-god that has been transformed into a demon, and who in turn uses his dying breath to curse Ashitaka. Cast from his village, Ashitaka rides west, where he meets Lady Eboshi, the mistress of an iron-mining town on the edge of an enchanted forest, as well as Princess Mononoke, a human foundling who lives in the forest with her adoptive mother, a wolf goddess who is also Lady Eboshi’s enemy. Man and animal gods collide for a terrifying and gorgeously imagined final battle, one meant to determine who will rule the future: man, or beast.
    We know the answer, of course, and so, we must imagine, does Miyazaki. But the challenge and genius of the film is its refusal to provide certainties. Eboshi, for example, with her slick of red lipstick and swishing silks, might be a perfect villain — she doesn’t hesitate to kill gods, fell trees and mine virgin land — and yet she also employs and cares for society’s untouchables: lepers and formerly indentured brothel workers. The animal gods are majestic in their size and sympathetic in their agony, and yet are also vengeful and combative, their attacks alternately pyrrhic or pointless.
    Above all, though, “Mononoke” is a visual marvel. As in most narrative visual art, Miyazaki’s genius is most apparent in the film’s quietest moments. My favorite scene, and the one that made me want to visit the Shiratani reserve in the first place — Miyazaki’s inspiration for the enchanted forest — is a close-up of a blanket of moss atop which tiny droplets of dew sparkle. The only noise is the plink of water dripping, one bead at a time, into a shallow pool. Eleven years ago, I saw that moss, that water, all drawn, and redrawn, by animators whose names I would never know, and thought: That is the definition of beauty, and of Japan. Someday, I’ll find where that is, and I’ll go there. And then I did.

    It was from these woods that the great Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki found inspiration for his 1997 animated masterpiece, “Princess Mononoke.”CreditChrystel Lebas
    THE JAPANESE HAVE long venerated the forest. The country’s primary religion is Buddhism, a sixth-century import from India via Korea, but its primary indigenous belief system is Shintoism, codified around the same time, and which might more accurately be described as a philosophy, or even a folklore, one that is inextricable from the country’s identity. Shintoism is commonly referred to as a form of animism, and although that’s not inaccurate, it’s also not quite true, either. Very reductively, Shintoism holds that certain things — notably, trees, stones, rivers, places and certain animals — are possessed of kami, or a divine essence. Much as Hindus believe that all gods are god, Shintoists believe that all things might be godlike, or that many things might be. Although that isn’t quite accurate, either: One doesn’t choose or not choose to be a Shintoist in Japan — you just are — and believing in kami doesn’t mean that you might not practice, say, Buddhism, as well. In Shintoism, the sacred and the natural are often the same.
    To enter a forest, any forest, in Japan is to be reminded of this. Many wooded areas here are preceded by a torii, a Shinto gate shaped like the outline of a door, which marks the dividing line between an ordinary space and a sacred one. Inside the forest, you will see trees and stones wrapped with a twisted rope, or shimenawa, dangling tassels and also folded white paper arrowheads, called shide: Both are meant to attract kami, and large trees and remarkably shaped rocks are particularly suitable hosts. One of the reasons Shintoism is so difficult to describe is because in it, it is likely that God has no face, or eyes; the spirit is not a reflection of us. It may not even be something living. The sacred is visible, but it isn’t necessarily relatable.

    At Shiratani, there is no torii, and there are no shimenawa and no shide. In Japan, forests are the spaces that most resemble European cathedrals, and there is a fundamental wrongness, an eeriness, about Shiratani’s lack, the kind of ghostliness one feels in a deconsecrated church. And yet one also observes, with every step, evidence of the human: The most popular (allegedly two-hour-long) path that cuts through the woods is a trail of scarred and rutted stones, slippery with moss so that your hands scrabble over wet tree roots for purchase, that was laid around 400 years ago, back when the forest was regularly plundered for timber to make shingles. It rains almost daily on Yakushima, and in the forest, everything is covered with a perpetual slick of dew or rain; one thinks of those early travelers, how they struggled up and down the hills in their straw sandals, cords of wood strapped to their backs.
    But along with the aggressive tree-ness of Shiratani, it was what was missing that most reminded me of the forest of “Princess Mononoke.” Aside from the signs of the sacred, I realized, Shiratani also lacked flowers, and insects, and most unsettlingly, birdsong. You could stop and listen and hear only that plink of water that Miyazaki had recreated, but nothing else. You could look around you and see only green, green, green. Farther north, where the forest thinned, there were macaques, mean little creatures with flushed faces and disconcertingly human noses that walked on all fours as a bear cub might, but here, in its thickest section, there was nothing: The eye and ear searched and searched, but nothing was able to disrupt the dominance of the sugi themselves. It was as if the forest was so suffused with kami that there was no room for anything else.
    The enchanted forest in “Mononoke” is similar, though with one big difference — that forest is the domain of the Forest Spirit, one of the most marvelous and frightening creatures invented in animation. By day, it is a massive, shaggy elk, its many horns blooming above its head like coral branches, its face resembling an ancient Japanese carved mask, with disquietingly human eyes. When it walks, wildflowers sprout, grow and die from wherever its cloven hoofs land; with a soft exhalation, it can kill or revive. But at nightfall, the Forest Spirit’s neck stretches toward the sky, and as the god grows, eventually looming above the treetops, it also becomes transparent, a kind of massive bipedal salamander, its back fringed with a frill of fins, stalking through the dark.
    The Forest Spirit is, on one hand, simply more glorious evidence of Miyazaki’s fecund imagination. But his mysterious and discomfiting presence is proof as well of the director’s preoccupation with the symbols and mythologies (and values) of a prelapsarian Japan, particularly those associated with Shinto and Buddhist folklore. The spirit’s elk form, for example, is likely an allusion to the deer, considered in both Shintoism and Buddhism to be a messenger of the gods (and his nighttime form borrowed from a Shinto legend of a spirit who can create footsteps in a frozen lake). In “Totoro,” the two girls, caught in a storm, pass a stone statue of a Jizo, a bodhisattva responsible for protecting children and travelers. And in 2001’s “Spirited Away,” the story of a girl’s path to independence while being forced to work in a traditional Showa-era bathhouse frequented by gods and demons, and Miyazaki’s second masterwork, a river god purifies himself in a steaming tub of water, washing away the detritus of men. Many of Japan’s greatest directors — including Yasujiro Ozu and Akira Kurosawa, to name just two — wrestled, repeatedly, with whether and how industrialization had in some way fundamentally altered the country’s essential qualities: its worship of the natural world, its humility before it, its soul. But none have captured, in such color and with such verve, the profoundly pagan sense of twinned superstition and celebration that informs the culture, the way the country masquerades as a contemporary one in its surfaces and in its technology while still believing, unswervingly, in gods and monsters, in the divinity of a tree

    Shiratani’s moss-covered forest. Here, the tree cover is so dense that there are few flowers and no animals: just the endless green of the trees and the sparkle of dew.CreditChrystel Lebas
    FOR MANY CENTURIES, Japan was primarily forestland, its woods rolling, wavelike, over mountains and hills. This means its people are well accustomed to walking among trees, and are therefore excellent trekkers, and as I sat, panting, on what might well have been a sacred rock, grandmothers in nylon windbreakers and hiking boots strolled past me, nodding their hellos.
    An hour and a half passed (it was supposed to take 45 minutes) until my friend and I reached Shiratani’s most famous attraction, the moss forest. Once again, we sat down on a rock to rest. Here, the air darkened, became colder and damper, the light even thinner, the trees more bearded with green. In another country, in another fairy tale, it would be a place of foreboding, a place where children would find a witch in a house built of pale, crumbling slabs of shortbread, its roof trimmed with scallops of fondant, its chimney whistling smoke.

    But here there was only the forest, and an indefinable but potent sense of ancientness. Japan’s oldest text, from approximately A.D. 712, is the Kojiki, commonly translated as “The Book of Ancient Matters” and told in prose, songs and poems. The first section of the three-part text is called the Kamiyo no Maki, “The Volume of the Age of the Gods,” and is a chronicle of Japan’s origins, its descent from the Sun Goddess, Amaterasu, and how the emperor in turn descended from her and came to rule the country. It is the kind of story a very old culture tells to itself to explain how it came to exist, the kind of story that might now be told in a movie.
    Across from me was an especially large tree, its bark smooth and many-shaded, its bottom weirdly bulbous. My friend got up to read the small plaque that was posted next to it. The sugi was more than 3,000 years old, he reported; many centuries ago, it had contracted an illness, and its core had rotted. But instead of dying, the tree had grown around its sickened heart, and lived on. Three thousand years! It was older than the Kojiki, older than Shintoism, older than Japan, half as old as recorded civilization itself. It had been damaged, but it had found a way to accommodate that damage, and it had lived. We discussed the metaphor inherent in its existence, of course; that is the modernist impulse, and we couldn’t avoid it — the comparison or the conversation itself. It was, we realized, an enchanted forest after all — a place where gods might be mortal, where civilization bayed at the borders, but where a thing might still live, even though its heart might have been broken, long before we knew what a heart even was.

    Hanya Yanagihara is the editor in chief of T Magazine. She has also edited at Conde Nast Traveler, Town and Country, W, Radar, and Brill's Content. She began her career in book publishing at Random House.
    CreditChrystel Lebas

    Sunday, May 20, 2018

    Chinese Man - Step Back (Official Music Video)

    T.S. Eliot, “Journey of the Magi”


    A cold coming we had of it,
    Just the worst time of the year
    For a journey, and such a long journey:
    The ways deep and the weather sharp,
    The very dead of winter.
    And the camels galled, sore-footed, refractory,
    Lying down in the melting snow.
    There were times when we regretted
    The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,
    And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
    Then the camel men cursing and grumbling
    And running away, and wanting their liquor and women,
    And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters,
    And the cities dirty and the towns unfriendly
    And the villages dirty and charging high prices:
    A hard time we had of it.
    At the end we preferred to travel all night,
    Sleeping in snatches,
    With the voices singing in our ears, saying
    That this was all folly.

    Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,
    Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;
    With a running stream and a water mill beating the darkness,
    And three trees on the low sky,
    And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.
    Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel,
    Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,
    And feet kicking the empty wineskins.
    But there was no information, and so we continued
    And arrived at evening, not a moment too soon
    Finding the place; it was (you may say) satisfactory.

    All this was a long time ago, I remember,
    And I would do it again, but set down
    This set down
    This: were we led all that way for
    Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
    We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death,
    But had thought they were different; this Birth was
    Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
    We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
    But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
    With an alien people clutching their gods.
    I should be glad of another death.

    From The Collected Poems 1909-1962

    Earth Blog

    Compressorhead - Smells Like Teen Spirit (Nirvana Cover) (live in Moscow...

    The  drummer reminds me of General Grievous.

    Saturday, May 19, 2018

    Furious Angels - Rob Dougan

    Agent Johnson: It's him. Agent Thompson: The anomaly. Agent Jackson: Do we proceed? Agent Thompson: Yes... Agent Jackson: ...he is still... Agent Johnson: ...only human.

    Clubbed To Death Remastered HD Original

    Fatboy Slim - Waking up to find your love's not real - Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find Waking up to find Waking up to find Waking up to find Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Waking up to find your love's not real Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, right now Right here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here Here, here, here, here

    Watching the World Wake Up from History
    Waking Up to Find Your Love's Not Real, Right Here, Right now

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    Friday, May 18, 2018

    Metallica - The Unforgiven (Video) Greek to English Text Lyrics - I’ve no threads fastening me to anything I can go anywhere I seem to have been given the freedom of this place what am I then?

    The Unforgivable Metallica New blood unites this earth And quickly subdues With constant shame of pain The young boy learns the rules With the time the child pulls This waving boy makes a mistake Eliminates all his thoughts The young man is constantly struggling and knows A vow at his own Never from this day His Will will not be removed What I have felt What I know Never shone through what I've ever seen Never see You will not see what it could be What I've felt What I've seen Never shine in to what I have d Never ever let go Never never do That you do not like They devote their lives To run all of them Try to thank them all That bitter man he is Throughout his life the same He is constantly fighting This fight that can not to win A tired man who sees he does not care anymore The old man is preparing to die sad This old man here is me What I've felt What I know Never shone through what I've ever seen Never see You will not see what it could be What I have felt I've never heard Shine in what I've seen Never ever let go Never never So you do not like What I've felt What I know I never shined inside what I've ever seen Never never see We will not see what could it was What I've felt What I've seen Never shine through what I've seen Never ever let go Never never So you do not like Never ever free Never do not You do not like it By the mark Marked You That's why your Unforgiven transcription Never ever free yourself Never let you go you do not like with the words you highlighted So I dub you Unforgiven Never free Never ever you So I do not like Tragoudochoi: James Alan Chetfilnt / Kirk Avenue. Hammett / Lars Ulrich / Google Machine Translation of Greek Text Song LyricsTo asynchórito Metallica Néo aíma enónei aftí ti gi Kai grígora ypotássetai Me synecheís ntropí pónou To nearó agóri mathaínei tous kanónes Me to chróno pou to paidí traváei Aftó to kounáei agóri kánei láthos Svínei apó óles tis sképseis tou O nearós agonízetai synechós kai xérei Énas órkos sto dikó tou Aftó poté apó aftín tin iméra den tha afairetheí i thélisí Tou Ti écho aisthantheí Ti gnorízo Poté den élampe mésa se aftó pou écho deí poté Poté min vlépete Den tha doúme ti tha boroúse na ítan Ti écho aisthantheí Ti écho gnorísei Poté den lámpsei mésa se aftó pou écho deí Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Afierónoun ti zoí tous Gia na tréchoun óloi tous Prospatheí na tous efcharistísei óloi Aftós o pikrós ánthropos aftós eínai Se óli ti zoí tou to ídio Aftós polemá synechós Aftós o agónas pou den boreí na kerdísei Énas kourasménos ánthropos pou vlépoun óti den noiázetai pia O géros tóte etoimázetai na pethánei lypiménos Aftó géros edó eínai egó Ti écho aisthantheí Ti gnorízo Poté den élampe mésa se aftó pou écho deí poté Poté min vlépete Den tha doúme ti tha boroúse na ítan Ti écho aisthantheí Ti écho gnorísei Poté den lámpsei mésa se aftó pou écho deí Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Ti écho aisthantheí Ti gnorízo Poté den élampe mésa se aftó pou écho deí poté Poté min vlépete Den tha doúme ti tha boroúse na ítan Ti écho aisthantheí Ti écho gnorísei Poté den lámpsei mésa se aftó pou écho deí Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Me tin éndeixi Sas episimantheí Gi 'aftó sou metengrafí unforgiven Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Me tin éndeixi Sas episimantheí Gi 'aftó sou metengrafí unforgiven Poté min eleftherósete poté Poté min sas Gi 'aftó den sas arései Tragoudóchoi: Tzéims Álan Chétfilnt / Kerk L. Chámet / Lars Oulrích Stíchoi tragoudioúο ασυγχώρητο Metallica Νέο αίμα ενώνει αυτή τη γη Και γρήγορα υποτάσσεται Με συνεχείς ντροπή πόνου Το νεαρό αγόρι μαθαίνει τους κανόνες Με το χρόνο που το παιδί τραβάει Αυτό το κουνάει αγόρι κάνει λάθος Σβήνει από όλες τις σκέψεις του Ο νεαρός αγωνίζεται συνεχώς και ξέρει Ένας όρκος στο δικό του Αυτό ποτέ από αυτήν την ημέρα δεν θα αφαιρεθεί η θέλησή Του Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι γνωρίζω Ποτέ δεν έλαμπε μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί ποτέ Ποτέ μην βλέπετε Δεν θα δούμε τι θα μπορούσε να ήταν Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι έχω γνωρίσει Ποτέ δεν λάμψει μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Αφιερώνουν τη ζωή τους Για να τρέχουν όλοι τους Προσπαθεί να τους ευχαριστήσει όλοι Αυτός ο πικρός άνθρωπος αυτός είναι Σε όλη τη ζωή του το ίδιο Αυτός πολεμά συνεχώς Αυτός ο αγώνας που δεν μπορεί να κερδίσει Ένας κουρασμένος άνθρωπος που βλέπουν ότι δεν νοιάζεται πια Ο γέρος τότε ετοιμάζεται να πεθάνει λυπημένος Αυτό γέρος εδώ είναι εγώ Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι γνωρίζω Ποτέ δεν έλαμπε μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί ποτέ Ποτέ μην βλέπετε Δεν θα δούμε τι θα μπορούσε να ήταν Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι έχω γνωρίσει Ποτέ δεν λάμψει μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι γνωρίζω Ποτέ δεν έλαμπε μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί ποτέ Ποτέ μην βλέπετε Δεν θα δούμε τι θα μπορούσε να ήταν Τι έχω αισθανθεί Τι έχω γνωρίσει Ποτέ δεν λάμψει μέσα σε αυτό που έχω δεί Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Με την ένδειξη Σας επισημανθεί Γι 'αυτό σου μετεγγραφή unforgiven Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Με την ένδειξη Σας επισημανθεί Γι 'αυτό σου μετεγγραφή unforgiven Ποτέ μην ελευθερώσετε ποτέ Ποτέ μην σας Γι 'αυτό δεν σας αρέσει Τραγουδόχοι: Τζέιμς Άλαν Χέτφιλντ / Κερκ Λ. Χάμετ / Λαρς Ουλρίχ Στίχοι τραγουδιού The Unforgiven © Universal Music Publishing Group

    Vox - 100 million Americans have chronic pain. Very few use one of the best tools to treat it. Chronic pain often has no physical cause. Psychotherapy can reduce the suffering. By Brian Resnick

    When pain settled into Blair Golson’s hands, it didn’t let go.
    What started off as light throbbing in one wrist 10 years ago quickly engulfed the other. The discomfort then spread, producing a pain much “like slapping your hands against a concrete wall,” he says. He was constantly stretching them, constantly shaking them, while looking for hot or cold surfaces to lay them on for relief.
    But worse was the deep sense of catastrophe that accompanied the pain. Working in tech-related startups, he depended on his hands to type. “Every time the pain got bad, I would think some variation of, ‘Oh no, I’m never going to be able to use computers again; I’m not going to be able to hold down a job; I’m not going to be able to earn a living; and I’m going to be in excruciating pain the rest of my life,’” he says.
    Like many patients with chronic pain, Golson never got a concrete diagnosis. For a decade, the 38-year-old Californian went from doctor to doctor, trying all the standard treatments: opioids, hand splints, cortisone injections, epidural injections, exercises, even elective surgery.
    Golson’s pain was not caused by anything physically wrong with him. But it wasn’t imagined. It was real.

    After weaning himself off the opioid Vicodin and feeling like he had exhausted every medical option, Golson turned to a book that described how pain could be purely psychological in origin. That ultimately took a pain psychologist, a therapist who specializes in pain — not a physician — to treat the true source: his fearful thoughts. Realizing that psychological therapy could help “was one of the most profoundly surprising experiences of my life,” Golson says. No doctor he ever saw “even hinted my pain might be psychogenic,” meaning pain that’s psychological in origin.
    Golson was lucky; few chronic pain patients ever get the chance to understand the psychological dimensions of their pain or try psychological therapies.
    There are 100 million Americans who suffer from chronic pain, and an unknown number of them are like Golson, with back pain, neck pain, fibromyalgia symptoms, or other forms of pain that have no diagnosed physical cause.
    It’s not that their pain is “in their heads.” The truth is much more nuanced: All pain can have both physical and psychological components. But the psychological component is often dismissed or never acknowledged.
    Big pharma’s aggressive marketing of pills and the minimal training doctors get in pain medicine mean that for too long, the go-to treatment for many forms of chronic pain has been opioids. Yet opioids have proven to be not only largely ineffective for treating most chronic pain but also highly addictive and risky.
    Cognitive behavioral therapy, meanwhile, shows meaningful benefits on chronic pain — both for psychogenic pain, and for pain with a physical cause — according to systematic reviews of the research. There’s also promising research around mindfulness-based stress reduction and therapies inspired by it.
    Yet pain psychologists are hard to find and hard to pay for, and most patients don’t even know they exist. “At the moment, [these therapies] tend to be seen as a route of no hope for the hopeless, for people who have gone through everything else,” says Amanda Williams, a psychological researcher who conducted one of the reviews of studies on the effectiveness of psychological therapy for pain.
    The question, then, is how we shift our understanding of pain so that psychology is the opposite of a last resort.

    Pain can be manufactured in your head and in your body

    We’re taught, by evolution and by our experience, that the sensation of pain means there’s something physically wrong with our bodies. This is adaptive. But sometimes, a one-time injury or illness — or perhaps nothing at all — triggers years of chronic pain.
    Doctors have long known that pain can exist in the absence of any physical harm. There’s a famous case study that describes a construction worker who came into the emergency room with a 6-inch nail in his boot. It was so painful, the report says, that the patient had to be sedated with powerful opioids. When the shoe was removed, it turned out the nail had passed clean between the toes. There was no injury.
    Likewise, doctors have known that pain can be suppressed without any real medical intervention. Fake surgeries will often produce the same pain-relieving effects as real surgeries. The placebo effect can account for much of a medicine’s pain-relieving power.
    Pain is fascinating because it sits at the intersection of biology and psychology and reveals how the two are intertwined. “Pain can be ‘real’ pain — and it can be caused by brain circuits,” says Tor Wager, a neuroscientist who studies pain at the University of Colorado Boulder. “We have to get over this concept that either the pain is real or it’s all in my head and I’m making it up.” It’s both.

    Pain, explained

    How pain works is incredibly complicated, involving nerve endings in the body, many regions of the brain, and an additional nerve pathway from the brain back down to the body.
    Plus, there are various inflammatory chemicals in the body that can enhance or diminish the experience of pain. A malfunction at any juncture of these pain pathways can lead to chronic pain. This “breaking” is sometimes referred to as central sensitization, and it leads people to misinterpret normal sensations coming from their nerves as pain.
    “Imagine this pain system is like the alarm system of your house,” says Andrea Furlan, a leading chronic pain physician and researcher at the University of Toronto. “The alarm system can break; it can malfunction.” It can go off when someone accidentally brushes up against the door when it’s really meant to sound during a break-in.
    Chronic pain may start off as an acute injury and then never go away. It could also be the result of nerve problems, or degenerative diseases like arthritis. Some people might be more susceptible to acute pain turning into chronic pain due in part to genetics. And there’s some evidence that differences in brain structure can predict who goes on to develop chronic pain and who does not.

    Our thoughts, personalities, and learned behaviors can also influence whether our pain alarms get tripped. So do our emotions. “If you get an on-the-job injury and you hate your job, you’re much more likely to become disabled by the pain,” says Roger Chou, a professor of medicine at Oregon Health & Science University who has studied chronic pain.
    Physical problems in the body don’t always create pain in our minds, for reasons scientists don’t quite understand. Many people with herniated spinal discs (a common explanation for lower back pain) often have no pain at all. “It’s not that the biological, anatomic reasons are not important, but they’re just one part of the picture,” Chou says. Similarly, around 85 percent of people with lower back pain have nothing diagnosably wrong with them.
    Overall, the takeaway is that “pain isn’t just something that happens to us,” says Beth Darnall, a professor of anesthesiology at Stanford University. “We are participating with pain by how much attention we give to it, by the contents of our thoughts, and our appraisal. How awful and negative is it? How helpless and hopeless do you feel about it? Do you feel [like] a victim; do you feel at the mercy of your pain?”

    Psychotherapy helps you tell a new story about pain

    Golson had been catastrophizing his pain, thinking of the worst possible outcomes, like losing his job or having to largely start over in life. A similar thing happens to people who suffer from anxiety: Feelings get magnified in a loop of negative rumination.
    Research has shown that catastrophizing is associated with worse pain outcomes: more intense pain, and a greater likelihood to develop chronic pain. It’s also associated with higher levels of fatigue.
    Neuroimaging studies suggest that if you engage in catastrophizing thoughts, it amplifies pain processing — “so you’re unwittingly pouring gasoline on the fire,” Darnall says.
    But as a chronic pain patient who bounces from specialist to specialist seeking a diagnosis, it’s hard not to catastrophize.
    “I think one of the most terrifying things is not knowing [what’s wrong],” says Dania Palanker, a health insurance expert at Georgetown University who suffered for years with debilitating lower back and joint pain. She went from doctor to doctor before finally receiving a diagnosis of small fiber neuropathy (which is damage to certain nerve fibers). “It’s a terrifying feeling. You don’t know — is it just going to get worse and worse? Am I going to be completely incapacitated at some point?”
    In addition to her medication, she says mindfulness therapy helped her feel less threatened by her pain. “I know that it’s just that my nerves are broken,” Palanker says, which helps her disregard the pain at times.

    Golson had received a therapy called pain reprocessing therapy, which is currently being tested with a clinical trial. It’s a psychological therapy that uses a technique called somatic tracking, where patients just take time to notice the feelings and sensations going on in their body while assessing those sensations and determining whether or not they should fear them. (This exercise is also common in mindfulness meditation.)
    “Pain is a danger signal that also can warn of us tissue damage, but sometimes these danger signals can be activated in the absence of real danger,” says Alan Gordon, the director of the Los Angeles Pain Psychology Center, where Golson was treated. “It’s almost like a kinesthetic hallucination. It’s hard to not buy into these messages that your brain and your body are giving you.”
    The goal of the therapy is to get the patients to reinterpret the sensations they feel as non-dangerous.
    “And when you are able to attend to a sensation without fear, assuming the pain is nonstructural in nature, the pain will decrease,” Gordon says. In a sense, they’re treating pain similarly to how they would treat an anxiety disorder. This idea draws a bit on the approach of the late Dr. John Sarno, who believed most pain was stress-related, but with fewer Freudian overtones and more academic rigor.
    You might be thinking: Isn’t this all a placebo response? Well, maybe. But don’t dismiss placebos’ healing power. Even powerful painkillers like morphine are much less effective when people don’t know they’ve taken them.
    The clinical trial is still running, so the results are not yet clear. But the researchers have thrown in a few interesting wrinkles. A third of the patients (who all suffer from chronic back pain) will receive pain reprocessing therapy, another third will get no therapy at all, and a third group will actually get an open-label placebo injection. That is, they’ll get an injection they’re told is just a placebo, which, perplexingly, has been shown in some studies to relieve some forms of chronic pain.
    All the patients in the clinical trial will undergo fMRI brain scans to see if there are changes in the regions best associated with the stories we tell about ourselves. “A key goal and outcome of many psychotherapies is helping the client tell a different story about themselves,” says Yoni Ashar, a University of Colorado Boulder neuroscience researcher and collaborator on the trial. “The empirical literature clearly links ‘storytelling’ and placebo brain regions, and it seems very likely that the process of psychotherapy heavily recruits these regions as well.”
    It could be that psychological therapy is kind of like a strong placebo, or that placebo is a weak form of therapy.

    The best evidence base is for cognitive behavioral therapy

    Psychological treatments are no cure-all for chronic pain.
    But considering how dangerous and damaging the past decades of treating chronic pain with addicting opioids has been, and how risky and expensive surgery can be, they’re a worthy option, one that’s never sold to doctors by pharmaceutical representatives or advertised directly to consumers on TV.
    The most common psychological treatment for pain, and the most well-studied, is cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT. Overall, it’s one of the most rigorously tested and effective tools psychology has to offer. More typically, it’s used to treat anxiety, phobias, and mood disorders like depression. But it can also help some people manage their pain.
    Like the somatic tracking exercises described above, the goal of CBT is to come to a new understanding about pain. That it isn’t something that’s physically harmful and that certain thoughts and behaviors can make pain worse.
    Let’s say a patient has trouble sitting in one place for a long time because of their pain. That can make them fearful to go out, spend time on public transportation, or take trips on planes. CBT tries to test the patient’s assumptions about how long they can sit and how dangerous they think their pain is.
    “We take the [longest time] they feel they can sit for manageably and then put breaks in between, and gradually get them to sit longer,” says Amanda Williams, the University College London clinical psychologist who completed a huge meta-review on studies of CBT for pain.

    CBT “helps people change ways of processing their beliefs and their experiences when they are overly negative,” she says.
    It also targets behaviors, encouraging people to exercise (a useful tool in reducing many forms of pain) and change problematic manners of movement.
    “I’ve treated so many people who, because they thought they’re weak with back pain or leg pain, they’ve started to use a walking stick. And then they started getting pain in their shoulder and neck,” Williams says. “When you teach them to walk without the stick, they realize it was the stick that was causing the pain.”
    It doesn’t work perfectly for everyone.
    Justin Hardcastle is a 27-year-old in the Pacific Northwest who receives disability benefits for intense migraines. For him, CBT didn’t relieve his symptoms. But at least, he says, it was nice “having some space to vent to someone who is trained to respond to that venting.” He felt “a lot less guilty” complaining about things in therapy than to the people closest to him.
    CBT itself can reduce pain. Most recently, a JAMA Internal Medicine systematic review published in early May found it effective in treating chronic pain in patients over age 60. There’s also some evidence from fMRI imaging studies that CBT can lead to brain changes believed to correspond with people being in more control of their pain. But where CBT is more effective is in combating a measure called disability, which assesses the activities a patient can and can’t engage in. CBT helps move more items from the “can’t” to “can” category. This is a subtle but important distinction, and arguably, it’s a more important measure of quality of life.
    Shelley Latin, a 64-year-old lawyer in Oregon, has had debilitating sharp stomach pain since 2011. A year after it began, doctors found she had a bacterial infection. But even after the infection was treated, the pain persisted. Latin was frustrated, caught in the typical cycle of going from doctor to doctor and in so much pain she couldn’t work or watch television. “It stops you,” she says of pain. “That’s what it’s for — it gets all your attention, all your energy.”
    A combination of medications, including opioids, helped Latin get back to work, but the pain was still there. No medical professional could find an underlying physical reason why. Latin now understands that her pain is caused by central sensitization, or the “broken pain system.”
    After CBT, the pain doesn’t seem to have lessened, “like on a 1-to-10 scale,” she says, “but the amount of suffering that goes along with it is less.” She can work again. She can concentrate on watching The Borgias, her favorite show, on Netflix. Her sense of humor returned. She stopped worrying so much about the future. Though the pain is still there, she pays it less mind.
    This is different from the relief she got from opioids. The pills might reduce pain, she says, “but you’re still suffering — because of the way you approach the pain, the way you think about it, and the way you allow it to affect your life.”
    In the brain, emotional pain and physical pain interact. Just as people sometimes turn to opioids to mask their emotional problems, psychological therapy can help physical pain. “It’s time to recognize that there is so much overlap that we almost can’t treat one without addressing the other,” Darnall, the Stanford professor of anesthesiology, says.

    Psychological therapies can get better — and so can access to them

    There’s still a lot that researchers would like to know about psychological treatments for chronic pain. One is that it’s hard to know which patients, and what types of chronic pain, they’ll work best for.
    A second is that it’s hard to know what exact component of these treatments is most beneficial. In clinical trials that compare CBT to an active control group (such as one that engages in another form of therapy, like exercise, physical therapy, education, or a support group), the benefits for pain disappear.
    That means CBT isn’t uniquely better at diminishing pain than other forms of therapy (though it’s still better than doing nothing). However, compared to active controls, CBT does have an increased positive effect on catastrophizing and disability. And, as mentioned, these are key components to decrease suffering and pain in some cases.
    Researchers are now wondering whether the most effective components of CBT can be distilled into a more potent form. More effective forms of psychological therapy may be possible, but they need to be developed with a similar rigor as the pharmaceutical industry develops drugs.

    CBT takes many hours of intensive one-on-one therapy. So Darnall is in the midst of a clinical trial to find out if just a two-hour class on pain catastrophizing before a surgery can help reduce pain post-operation. If that works, it could be a small step toward reducing the need for opioids. “Real-world patients don’t have access to 11 weeks of CBT,” she says. “Insurance might not cover it, where are you going to find a psychologist, you can’t get off work. What I wanted to do was create something accessible, efficient, and low-cost.”
    Indeed, therapy can get pricey. Palanker, the Georgetown health insurance expert, paid more than $100 a session out of pocket for mindfulness therapy for her pain. And CBT can cost $100 or more per hour of counseling.
    Other than price, there are many challenges to increasing the number of chronic pain patients in psychological therapy. First off is simply education about it: A 2016 survey of chronic pain patients found 31 percent of responders said they weren’t sure how to find a pain psychologist.
    Then there’s the fact that not all clinical psychologists specialize in treating pain, and many therapists don’t take insurance at all. Finally, there’s this: Most pain problems are dealt with by primary care doctors, or specialists, who may find it easier to prescribe a pill than weeks of therapy.

    We need medical and psychological treatments for pain. But we also need to recognize that medical treatments have been overused.

    On the bright side, psychological therapies for pain are low-risk. The same cannot be said of medical treatments for chronic pain. Back surgery for lower back pain often backfires. Doctors literally call this “failed back surgery syndrome” — around 20 percent of back surgery patients will still have chronic pain despite successful procedures, which can cost $50,000 or more.
    There are similarly high risks and low rewards for treatments for other sorts of joint pain. In 2017, a clinical trial for osteoarthritic knee pain compared a saline injection to a corticosteroid shot. Both injections relieved an equal amount of pain (thanks to the placebo effect). But it was the steroid group whose joint damage actually grew worse.
    Similarly, for years, doctors recommended relieving cardiovascular chest pain with stents meant to prop open arteries. A study recently found these stents, which cause serious complications in one in 50 patients and can cost tens of thousands of dollars, are no better than a sham procedure.
    Arguably, the risks of using opioids to treat chronic pain are worse. For years, pharmaceutical companies pushed doctors to prescribe often addicting opioid pills to treat a huge number of painful ailments, despite a lack of evidence that these pills were effective for long-term treatment. Now it’s forecast that over the next 10 years, 650,000 people could die of opioid overdoses in the United States. It’s not that opioids can never treat chronic pain safely, but there’s clear evidence they’ve been overprescribed.
    The best pain treatment centers have psychologists, physical therapists, and physicians on staff who consult with one another and decide on the right course of medication and therapy. But these centers are hard to find and their waitlists can be months long. It can be hard to convince patients who are looking for a quick fix to try psychotherapy.
    The language here is tricky for doctors, too. There is a long and real history of people (particularly women) not being believed about their pain, and sometimes physicians do miss a crucial diagnosis. In her practice, Furlan says she never uses the phrase, “The pain’s in your head.”
    “That will destroy your relationship with the patient,” she says. “They will never come back.” It’s dismissive of their experience, and it’s not the truth. Instead, she explains, with psychotherapy, “we’re trying to improve the person that has pain, not just the pain the person has.”