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Discovery Channel Magazine India - April 2015

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discovery channel magazine India April 2015

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IN PANIC MODE 46

WHEN FEAR AFFECTS US

ALTERNATE LIVING 58
HEAL YOUR SOUL

ALL WIRED UP 74

INTERNET ADDICTION

SPACE MATTERS 88
THE MARS MISSION

APRIL 2015 I `150

C H A N N E L M AG A Z I N E I N D I A

SAKE, SAKURA
AND SAMURAI
JAPAN REDISCOVERED
PG 30

EDITOR'S LETTER

C H A N N E L M AG A Z I N E I N D I A
Editor-in-Chief Aroon Purie
Group Chief Executive Officer Ashish Bagga
Group Synergy and Creative Officer Kalli Purie
Editorial Director Jamal Shaikh
Managing Editor Abha Srivastava
Sub Editor & Feature Writer Adii Dande
Art Director Piyush Garg
Asst Art Director Rahul Sharma
Designer Kishore Rawat

Impact (Advertising)

Group Business Head Manoj Sharma
Associate Publisher (Impact) Anil Fernandes
Senior General Managers Kaustav Chatterjee
(East), Jitendra Lad (West),
General Manager Shailender Nehru (Bangalore),
General Manager Velu Balasubramaniam (Chennai)

Business

Head Marketing Neeraj Chaturvedi
AGM-Marketing & Circulation Ajay Mishra
Chief Manager, Operations GL Ravik Kumar
Marketing Managers Kunal Bag, Anuradha Rana
Production Anuj Jamdegni

News stand Sales

Chief General Manager D.V.S. Rama Rao
General Manager (National Sales) Deepak Bhatt
Deputy General Manager (Operations) Vipin Bagga
Regional Sales Manager (North)
Manish Kumar Srivastava
Regional Sales Manager (East) Joydeep Roy
Regional Sales Manager (West) Rajeev Gandhi
Regional Sales Manager (South) Arokia Raj L

DISCOVERY NETWORKS ASIA-PACIFIC
Editorial Board

President and Managing Director Arjan Hoekstra
EVP and GM, South Asia Rahul Johri
VP, Marketing, South Asia Rajiv Bakshi
VP, Programming Charmaine Kwan
VP, Marketing Magdalene Ng

Editorial (Novus Media Solutions)
Editor Luke Clark
Design Director Richard MacLean
Chief Subeditor Josephine Pang
Staff Writer Daniel Seifert
Photo Editor Haryati Mahmood
Senior Designer Bessy Kim

Subscription/Customer Care

Email: [email protected]
Phone: +91 120 246 9900
Mail: Discovery Channel Magazine India,
A 61, Sector 57, Noida 201 301
VOLUME 2 NUMBER 14

Discovery Channel Magazine reserves all rights throughout
the world. Reproduction in any manner, in whole or part, in
English or other languages, is prohibited. Discovery Channel
Magazine does not take responsibility for returning unsolicited
publication material. • Published and distributed monthly by Living
Media India Ltd. (Regd. Office: K-9, Connaught Circus, New Delhi –
110001) under license granted by Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific
Pte Ltd., 21 Media Circle #8-01, Singapore 138562. • All Discovery
Channel logos © 2014 Discovery Communications, LLC. Discovery
Channel and the Discovery Channel logo are trademarks of Discovery
Communications, LLC, used under licence. All rights reserved.
• The views and opinions expressed or implied in Discovery Channel
Magazine do not necessarily reflect those of Living Media India Ltd.,
MediaCorp Pte Ltd or Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific, including their
directors and editorial staff. • All information is correct at the time of
going to print. • All disputes are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of
competent courts and forums in Delhi / New Delhi only. • Published
& printed by Ashish Bagga on behalf of Living Media India Limited.
Printed at Thomson Press India Limited 18 - 35, Milestone, Delhi Mathura Road, Faridabad - 121 007, (Haryana). Published at K - 9,
Connaught Circus, New Delhi - 110 001. • Editor: Jamal Shaikh

04
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

TIME AND TRAVEL
There can never be a better
form of education than travel is.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re headed
to an exotic part of the world, or to a small
town in India that few care to visit.
If you have a curious mind, just going
agenda-free, walking the streets and taking
in sights, smells, observing people and their
quirks, can be more intellectually satisfying
than the fanciest of planned holidays. Solo
travel can sometimes make a journey even
more exciting; you’re not bound to share
your attention or schedule, so you work on
your own time and make memories that go
beyond digital photographs.
I’m a frequent traveller, and my
last Facebook Travel Map showed that
I’ve visited 97 cities in 32 countries.
Unfortunately, Japan is not one of them.
The land of the rising sun is as much an
enigma as it is a novelty. Two extremely
well-travelled South African friends of mine
(the do eight to 10 trips a year!) recently
visited Japan and were blown away by
the politeness of the people. “Leave alone
smoking in public, if anyone receives a
phone call while walking on the street, the
person will go over to the side of the street
before he/she takes the call!" they told
me with genuine surprise. Then there are
the “sleeping capsule hotels”, automated
machines for everything, exotic geishas,
super fast trains, pop fashion and an adult
film industry that prohibits the show of
private body parts, but is known to be the
kinkiest in the world.
In this issue, we take a close look at
this wonder of the East. You will see that
despite the novelty, the Japanese way
of life is hardworking and disciplined.

Email: [email protected]
twitter.com/DiscoveryMagIN
instagram.com/DiscoveryMagIN
facebook.com/DiscoveryChannelMagazine

Their culture is unique, rich and robust.
And their habits form an efficient web of
progress and functionality.
If intrigue is the buzzword this month,
then do look at at a story called ‘The
Alternate Truth’ (p58), where scientifically
unproven systems of alternative medicine
are put to practice. The catch: for a lot of
people, they actually work.
And last but not the least, there’s a travel
story with no return. ‘The Mars’ March’
(p88) will take you into the world of the
700 people who have been shortlisted from
over 200,000 to be sent to the Red Planet.
There’s still another round of interviews to
decide who of those will take this journey
that has no surety of return.
As you see, there’s a lot to discover
in this issue of Discovery Channel
Magazine India. But interestingly, it’s the
connections you rediscover that’ll make
your travels truly worthwhile. Enjoy!

Jamal Shaikh
Editorial Director

twitter.com/JamalShaikh
instagram.com/JamalShaikh
facebook.com/JamalSShaikh

ISSUE 04/15

CONTENTS
DEPARTMENTS

12

FRONTIERS

STICKY PRINTS

12

How will you save your
fingerprints from Germany’s
smartest hackers?
NEWS

HISTORY IN
A BOX

14

Get ready for time travel of
another kind with these capsules
hidden around the world
CHEAT SHEET

TRUE LIES

18

We give you the best tricks to
pass the polygraph test with
flying colours!

13

TECHNOLOGY

GIZMO GEEK

19

From apps that mimic
mosquitoes to paperclips that
can get you killed...
SO YOU WANT TO BE AN

16

AUTOMOTIVE
ARTIST

23

Princess Vidita Singh tells you
how to drive your favourite fancy
car right in to your living room

THE GRID 13 FIND OUT JUST HOW
AN APPLE IPHONE SURVIVES A FALL
FROM SPACE AND HOW EASY IT IS TO
UNBOIL AN EGG!
06
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

NEWS 14 THE SECRET TO A REALLY
LONG LIFE SEEMS TO BE A BOWL OF
PORRIDGE, PLENTY OF EXERCISE
AND STAYING AWAY FROM MEN

COUNTRY CLUB 16 THE HEIGHT
OF BEING EGOTISTICAL? HAVING A
COUNTRY NAMED AFTER YOU,
WHAT ELSE?

LEFT IS WRONG? 16 ONE FINE DAY,
SWEDEN SWITCHED ITS DIRECTION
OF TRAFFIC. HOW DID IT GO?

DEATH THROES 18 A STEP-BY-STEP
GUIDE TO DEALING WITH A DEAD
BODY RIGHT NEXT TO YOU MID-FLIGHT

WATCH IT! 22 A JAMES BOND FAN?
CHECK OUT HIS MOST RIDICULOUS
WRISTWATCH EVER
WHAT'S ON 104 DO YOU KNOW ALL
ABOUT THE INNOVATORS WHOSE
WILD IDEAS MADE THE MODERN
WORLD A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE IN?

COVER IMAGE: DREAMSTIME

18

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE
WOW 10 STEP INTO A CHILLING
360-DEGREE VIEW OF A CITY THAT'S
BURNT TO A CRISP

23

74

8
08
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

58

46

FEATURES
ISSUE 04/15
COVER STORY

JAPAN DE-CODED

30

Whether it’s not apologising while seeming
to apologise or just drinking up a storm
during the cherry blossom season, here’s a
handy list of all the surprises that
Japan has to offer
PSYCHOLOGY

FACING FEAR

46

30

88

Could we rewire our reactions to better deal
with fear and anxiety? The first step could
well be facing our demons
HEALTH

THE HEALING TOUCH

58

From Ayurveda to acupuncture, alternative
healing methods are neck to neck in the race
with contemporary medicine
SCI-TECH

GAME OVER

74

Wean your child away from Internet
addiction by stepping into unique rehab
centres that provide long-forgotten modes
of entertainment as an alternative
SPACE

ONE-WAY TICKET

88

Very soon, humans will be sent to Mars.
From food to ambience, exactly what are
their chances of survival?

11
09
APRIL 2015

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

HISTORY
HISTORY
IN
IN360
360
Standing
Standing
inin
the
the
centre
centre
ofof
aa
giant
giant
360-degree
360-degree
viewing
viewing
platform,
platform,
visitors
visitors
atat
this
this
German
German
exhibition
exhibition
are
are
viewing
viewing
a scene
a scene
ofof
horror.
horror.
Staring
Staring
back
back
atat
them
them
are
are
the
the
charred
charred
ruins
ruins
ofof
Dresden.
Dresden.
ItIt
was
was
once
once
considered
considered
one
one
ofof
the
the
most
most
beautiful
beautiful
and
and
wellwellpreserved
preserved
medieval
medieval
cities
cities
inin
the
the
world.
world.
But
But
onon
February
February
13,13,
1945,
1945,
the
the
German
German
town
town
was
was
firefirebombed
bombed
byby
the
the
Allies,
Allies,
gutting
gutting
the
the
city
city
and
and
killing
killing
25,000
25,000
people.
people.
American
American
soldier
soldier
Kurt
Kurt
Vonnegut
Vonnegut
was
was
a prisoner
a prisoner
ofof
war
war
held
held
near
near
Dresden
Dresden
atat
the
the
time,
time,
and
and
hehe
viewed
viewed
the
the
slaughter
slaughter
first-hand
first-hand
——
it it
led
led
toto
the
the
creation
creation
ofof
one
one
ofof
the
the
most
most
famous
famous
anti-war
anti-war
books
books
ofof
allall
time,
time,
Slaughterhouse-Five.
Slaughterhouse-Five.
the
the
The
The
installation
installation
is is
work
work
ofof
artist
artist
Yadegar
Yadegar
Asisi,
Asisi,
who
who
has
has
been
been
completing
completing
these
these
large-scale
large-scale
projects
projects
with
with
his
his
team
team
for
for
many
many
years,
years,
producing
producing
over
over
3030
panoramas
panoramas
toto
date.
date.
They
They
are
are
created
created
byby
combining
combining
digital
digital
image
image
processing,
processing,
computerised
computerised
graphic
graphic
and
and
3D
3D
programmes.
programmes.
Visitors
Visitors
atat
this
this
panorama
panorama
will
will
nono
doubt
doubt
leave
leave
the
the
installation
installation
feeling
feeling
anti-war:
anti-war:
it’sit’s
based
based
inin
Dresden
Dresden

1010
DISCOVERY
DISCOVERY
CHANNEL
CHANNEL
MAGAZINE
MAGAZINE
INDIA
INDIA

WOW

11
APRIL 2015

ISSUE 04/15

ILLUSTRATION QUENTIN GABRIEL

FRONTIERS

STICKY FINGERS BE HAND IN GLOVES

WITH MITTS TO STAY SAFE FROM HACKERS
Your digits aren’t safe anymore. Germany’s defense minister
recently found that out when hacker Jan Krissler cloned the
politician’s fingerprints in the simplest way possible — off a
photograph. Using a series of close-up shots of her hand,
including one provided in her own press release, he was able
to perfectly reverse-engineer the print. “After this, politicians
will presumably wear gloves in public,” he joked. Krissler, who
is known in hacker circles as Starbug, has tackled biometric
security before. In 2013, he hacked the iPhone 5S print sensor

12
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

by copying the smudge of a thumbprint on the screen. For
this, he printed a dummy finger using wood glue and sprayable
graphene. But there are simpler hacks out there. Multiple tests
have shown that fingerprint moulds made from Play-Doh and
gelatin (the primary ingredient in Gummy Bears) can fool
fingerprint sensors up to 90 per cent of the time. It prompted
a security expert to note, “Gummy fingers can even fool sensors
being watched by guards. Simply form the clear gelatin finger
over your own. After it lets you in, eat the evidence.”

DISCOVERY

THE GRID
A S I A- PAC I F I C

CREEPY CRAWLIES

ON THE HUNT Hairy and

huge, the huntsman spider is
among the largest arachnids
in the world. Perhaps the
Aussie toddler recently filmed
petting one thought it was a
dog? Either way, she displayed
no fear of the eight-legged
intruder dangling in her
Sydney home. Behind camera,
the cooing mother sounds
more concerned for the animal
than the girl, saying, “Darling,
don’t grab him. You might scare
him.” Fortunately, this breed
rarely bites.

AMERICAS

HEIGHTS
CHEMICALS

HAZMAT HEIST Talking
of quirky stunts, a man on the
Sunshine Coast in Queensland,
Australia, pulled off a shocking
heist recently, when he entered
a pharmacy in a hazmat suit.
Yes, you read that right! Yelling
that he was carrying rat poison,
he sprayed three completely
unsuspecting women with
“an unknown chemical”
before stealing drugs. They
appeared to be unharmed after
decontamination, but as of
writing this, the robber has still
not been caught.

24
HOURS:

EUROPE

SIX-LEGGED SNACKS

Africa been plagued by a lack of
economic development? You
could answer with a myriad
of factors, but here’s one in
a study recently published
in the American Economic
Review: tsetse flies. Affecting
both livestock and humans,
the study authors compared
populations and the relative
development of different
ethnic groups, and found a
strong correlation between
higher tetse populations and
poor economic development.

APPLE FALLS According to
a video made by iPhone casemakers Urban Armour, iPhone
6 can survive a fall from space,
if enclosed in one of their cases.
Launched into space hooked
to a weather balloon rig, the
device floated along with two
GoPro cameras to 328,000
metres before freefalling to
Earth in a small parachute.
Having braved minus 56 degree
temperatures and 112 km/hour
winds, the phone was switched
back on. It worked fine.
FIVE-MINUTE EGGS

Chemists from American and
Australian universities have
discovered how to “unboil”
an egg. First they placed
90-minute boiled eggwhites
in a solution of urea, then put
the mixture into a vortex fluid
device that spins the white at
high speed. The force of the
movement pulls the proteins
and leaves the egg as a clear,
diluted solution again. This
may help scientists refold
lab-created proteins associated
with cancer.

MIDDLE EAST/AFRICA
CLIPPED WINGS Why has

Americans love munching
on burgers and cookies. Ants
and scorpions, less so. Yet,
many organisations say the
world could do with eating
more bugs, as they are more
eco-friendly to raise. Now,
US food manufacturers are
experimenting with ingredients
that mask the insect angle in
dishes. For instance, “cricket
flour”, made of mashed up
crickets. Health nuts, take note:
cricket has 15 per cent more
iron than spinach.

PRINT ME HOME A new

five-storey apartment building
and 1,100 square metre villa
(right) in Suzhou, China might
not look like much, but they are
game-changing — they were
made using a 3D printer. Crafted
with a patented “ink” made
from recycled construction
waste, the material is sent
through a 40-metre long printer.
This fabricates the parts in
large pieces which can then be
assembled. Hey presto, you’ve
got a building.

STRANGE AND SERIOUS EVENTS FROM ACROSS THE WORLD

LIFT ME UP When it’s
completed in 2020, Saudi
Arabia’s 1000-metre tall
Kingdom Tower will be the
world’s tallest building, with the
world’s longest lift. Current lift
ropes can only go to 500 metres,
so it took lift manufacturer
Kone nine years of testing to
unveil Ultrarope, a carbonfibre, friction-proof material
that is seven times lighter
than steel and will support the
weight of a lift going from the
ground floor to the very top.

LIQUIDS AND LASERS A
lot of chemical reactions occur
in liquids. Now, scientists at the
University of Bristol can follow
these chemical reactions,
which occur in trillionths
of a second, by combining
computer simulations and
laser spectroscopy. Unlike
the reactions, it’s no small
matter — by understanding
reactions at a molecular level,
they could better learn about
the environmental chemistry
of oceans and the synthesis of
pharmaceutical drugs.

LIFE IS SHORT, AND ART LONG, THE GREEK THINKER HIPPOCRATES ONCE SAID. NOW WORLDWIDE
BESTSELLING AUTHOR JAMES PATTERSON SEEKS TO DISPROVE THAT. HE RECENTLY RELEASED
HIS LATEST BOOK PRIVATE VEGAS IN AN UNUSUAL FORM: FOR US$300,000 YOU WOULD HAVE 24
HOURS TO READ IT BEFORE IT LITERALLY SELF-DESTRUCTED. PRICEY, BUT YOU ALSO GOT A
FIVE-COURSE DINNER WITH THE AUTHOR AND, FOR SOME REASON, A PAIR OF 14-CARAT GOLD
BINOCULARS. FOR A FAR SMALLER PRICE, READERS COULD DOWNLOAD THE E-BOOK VERSION
WHICH WOULD AUTOMATICALLY DELETE AFTER 24 HOURS — BUT WHERE’S THE FUN IN THAT?

13
APRIL 2015

NEWS
NEWS
STRIPES ARE SO HOT RIGHT NOW

+60%

SINCE 2008, INDIA HAS SEEN A 60 PER
CENT INCREASE IN ITS WILD TIGER
POPULATION, THANKS TO INCREASED
CONSERVATION EFFORTS

1,41 1

IN 2006, INDIA WAS
HOME TO LESS THAN
1,500 TIGERS, BUT
NOW BOASTS 2,226

100
YEARS

THERE IS A
LONG WAY TO
GO: A CENTURY
AGO, THE TIGER
POPULATION
IN INDIA WAS
ROUGHLY 100,000

2/3

INDIA ACCOUNTS FOR
TWO-THIRDS OF THE
GLOBAL WILD TIGER
POPULATION

DO THE
TIME
WARP
Opening a 200-year-old present!

Tug to the Rescue

A salvage tug lights the hull of the stricken Hoegh Osaka cargo ship after it
ran aground on Bramble Bank after leaving Southampton, England, bound
for Germany. All 25 crew members were rescued overnight.
idea of “no spoilers!”
to another level. The
Future Library project
is a century-long
installation whereby
one writer per year
will pen a piece of
work. They will remain
unread, kept in a public
library in Oslo until
2114. Margaret Atwood
is due to present the
first text this year,
leading us to wonder
if she won’t just hand
in a blank slip of paper.
Who knows? Or perhaps
she’ll write a thrilling
whodunnit based on
this novel idea from a
netizen: “A time capsule
would be a great place to
hide a body.”

14
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

Quote
Unquote

JESSIE GALLAN

“MY SECRET TO A LONG LIFE HAS BEEN
STAYING AWAY FROM MEN. THEY’RE JUST
MORE TROUBLE THAN THEY’RE WORTH. I
ALSO MADE SURE THAT I GOT PLENTY OF
EXERCISE, EAT A NICE WARM BOWL OF
PORRIDGE EVERY MORNING AND HAVE
NEVER GOTTEN MARRIED.”

It can’t be easy being
one of the world’s
oldest people, like
Scotland’s porridgechugging Gallan, who
recently celebrated her
109th birthday. Every
few months the media
will converge upon the
world’s oldest Asian,
or oldest man, and
bombard them with the
same question: “What’s
the secret to your

longevity?” Usually this
inane query comes on
their birthday, which
makes us wonder why
more of these oldtimers don’t answer,
“My secret is not
talking to journalists.”
Worse still is that you
never hold the title for
long. On average, the
world’s oldest person
dies every six to nine
months.

PHOTOS 3DERS.ORG (3D APARTMENT); CORBIS (NEWSPAPER);
SILEX (MAISON MATIN); GETTY IMAGES (CARGO SHIP)

In early 2015, historians
in Boston opened a
time capsule buried
in 1795, by heroes
of the American
Revolutionary War,
Samuel Adams and
Paul Revere. What was
prosaic then seems
incalculably exciting
200 years later. The
academics used a
porcupine quill and
dental tools to remove
the contents. Inside the
box were newspapers,
a Massachusetts
commonwealth seal,
a silver plate probably
inscribed by Revere, and
24 coins.
“It was a moment of
excitement as this brass
container was opened
with surgical precision,
and you suddenly found
yourself in the presence
of history,” the director
of Boston’s Museum of
Fine Arts told CNN.
No doubt, time capsules
are exciting. Like the Los
Angeles Bicentennial
Capsule, buried in 1976.
It couldn’t be more ‘70s:
it contains a pet rock (a
craze at the time that
makes even Tamagochis

look cool), pantyhose,
a skateboard and a
dress worn by Cher. At
times, the “capsule”
itself is the prize. When
wealthy Frenchman
Louis Mantin died in
1905, he decreed that
his house should remain
shuttered for a century,
before the doors be
opened to the public. It
gives an intimate look
into early 20th century.
Other capsules take the

HISTORY

RIGHT ON,
SWEDEN

Switching sides overnight!

even emblazoned on
women’s underwear, so
that leggy blondes could
remind appreciative
viewers of the switch. At
the stroke of 5am of the
day itself, loudspeakers
blared, “Now is the
time to change over.”
And was the result
Carmageddon?
Strangely, no. The photo
(shown left) is actually

The Year That Was: 1782

Of 79,000 chapters, witches and a 1,250-tonne statue

Estimated world population: 700 to 900 million. Russian leader Catherine
the Great completes The Bronze Horseman, an immense statue hewn from
a rock which to this day is the biggest rock that humanity has ever shifted.
Known as the “Thunder Stone”, it was carved down to 1,250 tonnes and
moved overland six kilometres. London creates the “Foot Patrol”, a 68-man
armed force for public security. In China, a literary collection of national
history known as the Siku Quanshu is compiled. It’s 79,000 chapters and 2.3
million pages long. Switzerland beheads Anna Goldi, the last woman to be
executed as a witch in Europe. Not until 2008 does she receive a legal pardon.

Me-Ville

It’s an egotistical world out there — as shown by this
partial list of places named after people
the exception to the
rule. Drivers were so
nervous and risk-averse
that accidents for
that Monday actually
decreased. And on the
day, 125 crashes were
reported, down from the
average of 130 to 198 on
previous days.
Did You
Know? When
Nazi troops
entered Austria,
Czechoslovakia and
Hungary, Hitler ordered
them to switch to
driving on the right side,
with immediate effect.

16
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
AMERIGO VESPUCCI
(OR POSSIBLY RICHARD
AMERYK)

LIECHTENSTEIN
THE PRINCELY FAMILY OF
CHINA
LIECHTENSTEIN
GEORGIA EMPEROR QIN
ST GEORGE

COLOMBIA
CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS
BOLIVIA
SIMON BOLIVAR

SAUDI ARABIA
MUHAMMAD BIN SAUD

PHILIPPINES
KING PHILIP II OF SPAIN

RHODESIA (NOW ZIMBABWE)
CECIL RHODES

NOTE THAT THE WORLD MAP ABOVE ONLY COVERS A PORTION OF PEOPLE-BASED
NAMES — BOTH RUSSIA AND BELARUS, FOR INSTANCE, ARE NAMED AFTER THE RUS
PEOPLE, A SLAVIC OR SCANDINAVIAN WARRIOR RACE. THE CONTINENT OF EUROPE
IS NAMED AFTER EUROPA, A CRETAN MOON GODDESS WHO IN GREEK MYTHOLOGY
HAD AN AFFAIR WITH ZEUS.

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES (OPPOSITE, HITLER)

It was an unpopular
decision, one that would
change life in Sweden
forever. And over 80 per
cent of the population
voted against it. Yet, in
1967, the government
announced: the
entire country
would switch
to driving
from the
left side of
the road
to the right.
Sweden was
the only country
in the region to drive
on the right-hand
side, till then. To make
things more complex,
most Swedes drove
American-made cars,
with the steering wheel
designed for right-hand
traffic anyway. And so
September 3, 1967 was
designated as H-Day (H
for Högertrafik or righthand traffic). Before
that, roughly 360,000
road signs had to
be reversed,
8,000 public
buses were
replaced
and, drivers
had to have
the change
drummed into
their heads. The
campaign kicked off
four years before the
event itself, which gave
Swedes plenty of time
to hear the contestwinning song to remind
people about the change
(a ditty called “Keep to
the Right, Svensson”).
In typical Scandinavian
fashion, the H-logo was

SCIENCE
LIES, DAMNED LIES

HOW TO BEAT
A POLYGRAPH

Bite your tongue and daydream away
warm summer night…or
drinking beer, whatever
calms you. You’re
throwing them off by
calming your body.'' The
real lies should then
barely register.

An Inconvenient Death...

...and what leads to a corpse with a vodka and tonic!
In a interview with
Wired, co-founder
of antipolygraph.org
George Maschke had
this to say. When selfinducing stress to skew
readings, “it has to be
something that cannot
be detected. You could
constrict the sphincter,
but many operators put
sensors on the seat”. Best
go for a mental solution!
Fun fact: the sphincter
trick was used in a liedetector scene in the
second season of the spy
show The Americans.

Many experts call
polygraphs unscientific
at best. Want proof? In
1987, Gary Leon Ridgway
passed with flying
colours. Yet in 2003, he
admitted to being the
Green River Killer — a
serial killer who had
murdered 48 people.

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DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

Hotels, airplanes, cruise ships and submarines are the worst places you want to
find a dead body. So how do crews deal with guests or passengers who die?
Ships Operation Bright Star
You don’t want to hear this phrase
announced on a cruise ship intercom
— on certain ship lines, it’s the code for
a severe medical emergency. Worse
still is the follow up, “Operation Rising
Star”, meaning whoever was in trouble
has died. The body is then usually
stored in a small freezer for corpses.
Since many cruise ships have elderly
passengers, the company designs
refrigerated units for several bodies

Space Pulverising
As NASA ponders longer space
missions, they also fear what
will happen to crew members
who die up there. Can you just
push the body out the air lock?
Not according to “space debris
mitigation guidelines” set by the
UN, who fear bodies could crash
into satellites. As such, NASA is
in talks with an eco-friendly body
disposal company called Promessa.

Planes Corpse Cupboards
When Singapore Airlines upgraded
their fleet to new Airbus A340-500
aircraft, they introduced special
cupboards designed to hold anyone
who died in mid-air. A member of
British Airways, meanwhile, recently
revealed another technique, now
discontinued: “Many years ago we
used to give [the dead body] a vodka
and tonic, a Daily Mail and eye shades
and tell passengers they were fine”

The Promessa Process:
 
Body is placed in an inflated

GoreTex bag
 
Bag is placed outside the craft,

where the minus 270 degree
temperature of space freezes it
 
A robot arm vibrates the corpse

until it disintegrates into pieces
 
Water is evaporated from the bag
 
Now a bundle of dry powder, the

corpse remains outside the craft
until re-entry to Earth.

LIFE EXPECTANCY THE GOOD AND THE BAD

“In countries doing well,” says Professor James Vaupel of the Max Planck
Institute, “life expectancy has been increasing by 2.5 years per decade”

+ THREE MONTHS
That equates to 90
days every year or…

+ SIX HOURS
… an increased life
expectancy of six
hours every day

- FIVE YEARS
In South Africa, life expectancy has
decreased by five years over the last two
decades, due to the HIV epidemic

ILLUSTRATIONS BEN MOUNSEY; PHOTO CORBIS (MAIN)

Between 2002 and
2005, four American
federal security services,
including the FBI,
conducted a whopping
28,000 polygraph
examinations. Not
on criminals, but on
potential employees.
Polygraphs, or lie
detectors, work by
recording changes in a
person’s breathing rate,
pulse, blood pressure and
perspiration. Lying is
stressful. So when you lie,
your body freaks out.
Russell Tice, a
National Security Agency
whistleblower, took
about 12 polygraph tests
during his two-decade
career. He told the press
that the NSA “routinely
uses polygraphs to
terrorise the rank and
file of NSA employees”
and to “gather personal
information that can be
used to blackmail them
into participating in
illegal conduct”. He
shared ways to beat
the test:
It starts with the
interviewer asking
“probable lie” questions,
to gauge your reactions
when you’re lying. The
question may be “Have
you ever lied to your
parents?” or, “Have you
ever cheated on a test?”
To cheat on this one,
Tice says you should
not only lie, but bite
your tongue hard. The
machine’s “needles will
fly everywhere, and
you’re skewing the test”.
When they get to serious
questions, just daydream,
he advises. “Think of a

TECHNOLOGY
WHAT’S THE BEST PALM-SIZED GIZMO?

THE MATCHUP: TECH FIRSTS
TO Y
O
ANNERS
OTH

WE BET YOU CAN’T
ANSWER THESE
TECHY QUESTIONS
CORRECTLY
WHO’S THE
WORLD’S LARGEST
DISTRIBUTOR
OF TOYS?

GLITTERBOMB

MOSQUITO

So popular was
An anti-loitering device that sends
shipyourenemiesglitter.com that the
a high-pitched whine only those
founder asked people to stop buying
aged under 24 can hear. In an
the explosive envelopes. “You’ve
interview, the inventor emitted a
made your glitter-coated bed...”
bat-like squeak “that was indeed
tutted an unsympathetic netizen.
bothersome”.

APPLE HEADPHONES

So uncomfortable, they’re like
thumbscrews for the ear. They
are equally annoying to sit next
to, as they leak tinny sound like
an audio-sieve. A great gift for
someone you loathe.

CHALIFENGE
RS

MONT BLANC PEN

The favourite self-defence tool of
famed war reporter Robert Young
Pelton: “Mont Blanc has a metal
refill that costs US$5. One of those
stuck in a soft point is a pretty lethal
weapon.”

PAPERCLIP

In Nazi-occupied Norway,
wearing a simple paperclip could
get you shot, as it was a secret
symbol of resistance. Hence why
there’s a seven-metre paperclip
statue in Oslo today.

STERIPEN WATER STERILIZER

TWEETPEE

CREDIT CARDS

Sure they can lead to crippling
debt, but they also minimise
annoying pocket change! No
wonder there are 66 million of
them in the UK alone (six million
more than there are people).

SWISS ARMY KNIFE

Actually, not so useful. They’re
fiddly and impossible to open
without ripping a nail. After small
knives were banned by airport
security, Victorinox lost 40 percent
of its business.

TOP
THREE
WINNERS

SWISS ARMY KNIFE

WHICH COUNTRY
HAS THE THIRDHIGHEST GUN
OWNERSHIP RATES?

Costs about US$70, and destroys
viruses and bacteria like nobody’s
business. Stick it in half a litre of fluid
and the 200 gram tool will beam UV
light, purifying it in 48 seconds.

ND
FUN A
L
U
F
E
US

An app from Huggies that senses
moisture when your baby’s diaper
is full. Pretty pointless? Not if you
have the app and your partner
doesn’t, allowing you to escape
when changing-time strikes.

It’s not Toys R’ US —
it’s those Happy Meal
guys, McDonalds. Some
20 per cent of their
meals include a (fairly
unexciting, if we do say
so ourselves) toy

Peaceful it may look,
but Switzerland is
bristling with guns.
In terms of civilian
firearms per 100
people, only Yemen and
the USA rank higher.
That’s because military
service is compulsory
for Swiss men who,
once discharged,
are obliged to keep a
firearm at home in case
of invasion
HOW LONG DOES
APPLE STORE YOUR
VOICE DATA AFTER
YOU SPEAK TO SIRI?

PAPERCLIP

Pointless they may be, but we still In 2006 a Canadian blogger traded
want “The Giant”: an 87-tool knife
a red paperclip for a pen, then a
(including cigar-cutting scissors)
doorknob, camp stove, neon sign,
that weighs 3.25 kilograms and
and within one year and 14 trades,
looks like it would give even Edward
had traded up to a house.
Scissorhands nightmares.

MOSQUITO

Shopkeepers who hate loitering
teens may like to pair this device
with a “zit lamp”, which drive
youngsters away by casting a
blue light that accentuates acne.
Wailing and pimples? No thanks.

Two years. Yeah.
Think about that the
next time you flirt with
the AI tool
19
APRIL 2015

TECHNOLOGY
INFORMATION IS CHEAP

US$40,000

US$849 US$60

COST OF THE FIRST IBM ONE-GIGABYTE,
FRIDGE-SIZED HARD DRIVE. RELEASED IN
1980, IT WEIGHS 250 KILOGRAMS

COST OF A 1GB DISK BY 1995

COST OF A ONE TERABYTE DISK
DRIVE TODAY — 1,000 TIMES LARGER
CAPACITY THAN A 1GB DRIVE

Zone
WATCHING THE TIME Danger
WATCH the games kids play
Late last year a young
German lad named Patrick
Priebe, described by the
press as a “laser weapons
hobbyist”, rocked YouTube’s
socks with a video that
showed him wielding a
working laser watch that
shot a 1,500 milliwatt beam,
strong enough to burst
balloons. Not quite as James
Bond-level as the “real”
laser watch in Never Say
Never Again, but still pretty
cool. So, we ask: what other
fictional watches do we want
to hit stores?

"CATAPENCIL" BY
TOYSMITH

SEIKO M516 “VOICE NOTE” WATCH
As seen in: Ghostbusters
Why we want it: As worn by the funky guys
in jumpsuits, this real-life watch included
an unearthly premise. It could pick up
“Electronic Voice Phenomena” — the voices
of the dead.

The Jetsons 1962

COMPUTER WRISTWATCH

As seen in: Inspector Gadget
Why we want it: Worn by Gadget’s young
niece, this watch is voice-activated, fires
lasers strong enough to cut through doors,
functions as a video communicator, and has
magnetic capabilities.
And one watch we don’t want:

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DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WATCH says:
Sharpened pencils
should not be
marketed as
playthings, much less
a miniature slingshotstyle launcher
"ALPHABET ZOO
ROCK & STACK PULL
TOY" BY SKIP HOP

WATCH says: A 20inch string poses a
strangulation hazard

"SWAT ELECTRIC
MACHINE GUN"
BY JUNXING TOYS
INDUSTRIAL CO.

WATCH says:
Detailed [gun]
replicas have resulted
in a number of deaths
through the years
"BOTTLE ROCKET
PARTY" BY
NORMAN & GLOBUS
(SCIENCEWIZ)

WATCH says: Bottle
rockets should
probably not be
marketed to kids as
young as eight.
"TRUE LEGENDS
ORCS BATTLE
HAMMER"
SOLD AT TOYS R US

WATCH says: It’s
not a good idea
when three-yearold children are
encouraged to play
the part of a Savage
Orc by wielding a
hard plastic Battle
Hammer measuring
almost two feet
in length

Buy Your Own Mech Warrior
Night Rider 1982

SEIKO 0674

As seen in: The Spy Who Loved Me
Why we don’t want it: Bond is, as usual,
pumping a female agent thoroughly for
information when his watch begins to print
out a miniature telex, like a fax, summoning
to headquarters. Not very classified, and
definitely not very cool.

At the end of last year
a group called World
Against Toys Causing
Harm (WATCH)
published their list
of most dangerous
toys on the market
in 2014. You might
think the list below
is a bunch of parents
being killjoys but, as
a report published in
Clinical Pediatrics
notes, in 2011 a child
was treated in US
emergency rooms
every three minutes —
for toy-related injuries

Predator 1987

For 120 million yen, or just over US$1 million, you can
purchase the Kuratasu Starter Kit from Suidobashi
Heavy Industries. Your own mech warrior, basically.
This two-legged robot weighs five tonnes, is 3.8
metres high and, “unlike normal riding toy, safety and
comfort is not guaranteed” but “you can guarantee
the dream of mankind ‘consisting robot pilot’”. The
mech rolls on wheels and reaches a top speed of just
over 9 km/hour, thanks to a diesel engine. In an earlier
incarnation, Suiodobashi Heavy Industries had armed
it with a high-speed water bottle launcher. Thanks to
facial recognition, its twin gatling guns could shoot
6,000 BB’s a minute when the pilot smiled. Needless
to say, DCM is currently counting our cash reserves.

PHOTOS WWW.72ANDSUNNY.COM/SAMSUNG (WATCHES)
ICON FROM THE NOUN PROJECT ICONSMIND.COM (DATA CENTRE)

Get the swag on your wrist from your favourite movies

HORIZONS
NEWS
OCCUPATIONS

BENTLEY ON THE SOFA!

Want your own set of fancy wheels? Just paint them on any surface available! Quite like
automotive artist Vidita Singh. In conversation with Adii Dande
AUTOMOTIVE ARTIST
VIDITA SINGH

Bentley, Porsche, Rolls Royce
and the likes were never
novelty for her. Brought up
in a family of automobile
enthusiasts, the daughter of
the erstwhile royal family of
Barwani, Madhya Pradesh,
Princess Vidita Singh always
had a special love for cars.
But she preferred to combine
this love with her artistic
flair, rather than actually
collecting them. The result?
She went on to become India’s
leading automotive artist!

Combining passion and art
Automotive art is a genre
where artists specialise
in painting cars on myriad
surfaces, including fabric,
canvas and objects like
cushions and scarves to
mention a few. Prominent
automotive artists from
England, France and America
paint in a variety of styles
that may include pop art but
have the automobile as their
focal point or subject.If you
love art, but want to take

an unconventional route,
automotive art can in fact be
at the top of your options.
Singh has been sketching
and painting cars since her
childhood but took it up
as a profession only after
completing college. “My
father encouraged me to
take it as a profession as he
realised my potential and
knew that I paint cars for the
love of them,” shares Singh. Of
course, this innate love is due
to her family’s passion about
all things automotive since
the last four generations.
Singh finds classic and
vintage cars beautiful, and
always wanted to bring out
their beauty on canvas. She
did just that and started to
document Indian automotive
history through her paintings
and also took up projects to
showcase the same.

confesses, is the greatest
feeling ever.
Singh was invited to
become a member of the
International Automotive
Artist Association, and
has been listed among
prominent auto artists
in automotiveartists.com. She
has exhibited in one of India’s
most prestigious automotive
shows – Cartier Concours
d’Elegance. Her paintaings
hang in the offices of
directors of major automotive
companies like Ford Motor
Company (Asia) and Hyundai
Motors India.

A shift in canvas

Automotive artists can
diversify into making
sculptures or other decorative
items. In fact, Singh herself
has diversified from her
artwork into designing what
is being called ‘wearable art’.
“I design pocket squares and
scarves with automotive
motifs and images of my

Carving a niche

To make one’s place in a
profession as rare as this,
one must be prepared for
challenges and have not-sofancy beginnings. “In the
initial years, I exhibited
my work only at
automotive
gatherings
or rallies. Only
automotive enthusiasts
appreciated my work earlier
as it is a very specific subject,”
she reveals. But her patience
and perseverance paid off,
and since the last few years
she has been exhibiting on
a different platform. The
appreciation for her work
is coming from not just car
lovers but also from people
who just enjoy art. Today,
people come back to buy
another painting as they
love her work, and this, she

automobiles. All you need is
to be passionate enough about
your subject to bring out its
beauty,” she says.
Endless hours of practice
and patience polish the skills
to make you better with each
piece of work. Although there
aren’t any formal training
institutes that offer a course
in automotive art, there are a
few tutorials available online,
informs Singh. “I am a self
taught artist, and it has taken
me many years to get a certain
quality in my work. I am still
learning with every painting,”
she shares.

APART FROM CANVAS, AUTOMOTIVE
ART FINDS PLACE ON SCARVES, TIES
AND EVEN CUSHION COVERS

Teaching oneself

Vidita Singh feels that if
one is an ardent car lover,
getting into automotive art
shouldn’t be difficult at all,
provided you have an artistic
inclination. “The profession
involves using any form of
art to depict and appreciate

paintings. These have been
very popular in my last few
exhibitions,” she says. She has
also designed suede cushion
covers with automotive
themes printed on them, as
well as trunks with prints of
her charcoal sketches. And
as an artist’s mind is never at
rest, Singh plans to add
more decorative products to
her collection.
23
APRIL 2015

EVENT

3D PRINTING OR ADDITIVE
MANUFACTURING (AM) IS THE USE OF
ONE OF VARIOUS PROCESSES TO MAKE
A THREE-DIMENSIONAL OBJECT

IDO EYLON OF 3D PRINTER
MANUFACTURER STRATASYS SPEAKING
AT THE INDIA TODAY CONCLAVE 2015

REINVENT, RE-IMAGINE
WITH 3D PRINTING
THE INDIA TODAY CONCLAVE 2015 SHOWED HOW 3D
PRINTING IS SURE TO SHAPE THE FUTURE…

PHOTO M. ZHAZO (MAIN); PHOTOS GETTY IMAGES, DREAMSTIME

R

ecreating objects of desire with 3D
printing is passé. Tech enthusiasts’
printing Christmas gifts and life-size
movie icons seems small when compared
to what else this technology can do. And
no, it is no longer just limited to engineers,
as was explained in detail at the India
Today Conclave 2015.
Ido Eylon, General Manager, Southern
Asia and Pacific, Stratasys – 3D printer
manufacturers, explained during the
session, Future is Here, “The ease
of use that latest printers offer has
enabled product designers to create
prototypes, and architects to get a better
view of buildings they design, before
implementing the plans. Fashion designers
can print footwear or apparel, as they
visualise before actually creating it!” He
explained how BMW uses 3D printing
to make tools that are used to optimise
processes, like placing an emblem, rather
than actual manufacturing.
NASA has used this for their space rovers.
24
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE

Eylon showed images of a space rover that
uses 70 3D printed parts, and stated that
NASA is currently working on a project that
will send a printer to space so that parts can
be re-printed if the need arises.
However, 3D printing’s most significant
contribution is in the field of medicine.
Eylon said that printers are now being
used to print chest CT scans for medical
students to study them better. 3D
printing complements medical science as
everybody is geometrically unique; and
this technology can help surgeons save
time by getting a better view and multiple
opinions, he added.
Is there more? Of course! According to
Eylon, an object can be personalised by
changing its look, before printing. “Actual
production rather than mere printing is
the next thing to look forward to. Printing
customised medication for patients that
can actually help treat them isn’t too farfetched now,” he concluded.

—ADII DANDE

ORGAN SCAFFOLDS PRINTED
WITH A 3D PRINTER

ILLUSTRATION OF A
DNA CHAIN CREATED
IN A 3D PRINTER

COLUMNIST
ANIL DHARKER
PARTICIPATING IN
THE Q&A SESSION

EVENT

SCIENCE AND
SPIRITUALITY

DR DEEPAK CHOPRA
ADDRESSING THE
AUDIENCE AT INDIA
TODAY'S FIRST HEALTH
CONCLAVE, BODY ROCKS

SPIRITUAL GURU DR DEEPAK CHOPRA
ON HOW IT’S EASY TO REVERSE AGE!

R

ACTRESS ADITI
GOVITRIKAR AND
FITNESS EXPERT
LEENA MOGRE IN
THE AUDIENCE

ACTRESS POOJA BEDI
INTERACTING WITH
DR CHOPRA DURING
THE SESSION

—VIDYA PRABHU

BAJAJ GROUP'S VASAVADATTA BAJAJ, RAJASHREE BIRLA, KAILASH AND AARTI
SURENDRANATH, ARTIST ROUBLE NAGI, ACTRESS POONAM DHILLON, AMONG
OTHERS, PRACTICED MEDITATION AS PART OF THE SESSION

YOGA GURU DR HR
NAGENDRA WITH
JAMAL SHAIKH,
EDITORIAL DIRECTOR,
DISCOVERY CHANNEL
MAGAZINE INDIA

INDUSTRIALIST
ADITYA VIKRAM SOMANI
WITH WIFE, PADMINI

PHOTOS MILIND SHELTE

DR CHOPRA IN
CONVERSATION WITH
PHILANTHROPIST
RAJASHREE BIRLA

eptilian brain in human beings; genes and
epigenes… A typical afternoon with Dr Deepak
Chopra, who is admired for his controversial yet
popular views on science and spirituality. At India
Today’s first health conclave, Body Rocks, at Mumbai’s JW Marriott, a select group was privy to his
journey so far.
The founder of The Chopra Foundation in his
session titled The Future of Wellness: Mind, Body,
Technology, delved into subjects like consciousness
and genetics. According to him, violence can be
traced back to the reptilian brain in human beings
that makes us attack in response to a threat.
His foundation has also made headway in the
field of wireless digital monitoring of people meditating. Dr Chopra paid special attention to genes,
epigenes, genomes and microbiology. He pointed
out how exchanging faeces between an old mouse
and a young one as part of their experiments had
pulled forward the former’s age and caused the
latter to age! “Work in this sphere will tell us how to
reverse biological age by 10, 15 and even 20 years,”
he said, adding that transplanting faeces from a
healthy mouse into a diabetic one, also cured the
mouse of its disease. This apart, he encouraged the
use of probiotics along with prebiotics. This was followed by a Q&A segment and a 10-minute meditation session that had the guests asking for more.

FEATURES
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PAGE 30 A RICH, CULTURAL TOUR
OF THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN
PAGE 46 KNOW WHAT LIES
BENEATH YOUR ANXIETIES
PAGE 58 THE LONG-HONOURED
MODES OF TREATMENT REVISITED

PAGE 74 AN IN-DEPTH LOOK
AT THE NEWEST FORM OF
ADDICTION THAT'S COME UP
PAGE 88 KNOW WHAT THE FIRST
HUMAN INHABITANTS OF MARS
WILL HAVE TO LIVE WITH

58

46

30

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APRIL 2015

30 30

DISCOVERY
DISCOVERY
CHANNEL
CHANNEL
MAGAZINE
MAGAZINE
INDIA
INDIA

PHOTO JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT, STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

PHOTO JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT, STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

COVER STORY

JAPAN AND THE
ART OF LIVING

Don’t be a nuisance. Always be polite. Avoid
making waves. Smartly weasel out of apologising.
For news correspondent Eric Talmadge, who has
lived in Japan for decades, these are just a few
lessons learnt over the years. He introduces you to
a few Japanese quirks that can certainly add zing
to your life! Photography
by Jérémie Souteyrat

31
APRIL 2015

PHOTO JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT, STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

A MAIKO (APPRENTICE GEISHA) ON
HER WAY BACK FROM WORK AT
NIGHT IN KYOTO
BELOW AND RIGHT THE CUTE
ANIMATED CHARACTERS YOU SEE
THROUGHOUT THE FEATURE ARE
FROM THE JAPANESE APP, "LINE".
PREVIOUS PAGE OMOTESANDO
AVENUE AND JINGUMAE
CROSSING AS SEEN FROM THE
TOKYU PLAZA BY JAPANESE
ARCHITECT HIROSHI NAKAMURA

32
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

COVER
COVERSTORY
STORY

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uniquewere
were
subsumed
subsumedbybythe
thetorrent
torrentofof
Western
Westernculture
culturethat
thatcame
came
flooding
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intothe
thecountry
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ininthe
thelate
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century
when
whenJapan
Japanopened
openeditsits
doors
doorsafter
aftercenturies
centuriesofof
rigorously
rigorouslyenforced,
enforced,selfselfimposed
imposedisolation.
isolation.
3333
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

It seems that with each
passing year, the very things
that once struck me as being
really Japanese are getting
harder and harder to come
by. But some things will never
change, and there are many
things that I hope never will.
Here are 10 things about
Japanese culture — some
good, some not so good — that
this humble American who
has spent most of his life
immersed in it has learned
over the years. Things that
anybody, anywhere, might just
be able to learn a thing or
two from.

This right here is the most
Japanese of them all. And at
first glance, it is a little hard to
swallow for people who don’t
have it programmed into their
own social DNA.
The basic measuring
stick applied to every social
interaction in Japan is
something that doesn’t have a
good English equivalent, but
probably should. The word for
it is meiwaku, which is often
translated as nuisance,
though that’s really only
scratching the surface. To
the Japanese, the worst
thing anyone can do is to be a
nuisance to others. If you’ve
got that label, you might as
well pack up and leave.
The Japanese apply the
concept of meiwaku very
broadly. If you recommend a
movie to someone, and they
go to the trouble of seeing
it, but don’t like it, then you
have committed meiwaku. But
meiwaku is a lot more than
that. Murderers looking for
a lighter sentence often beg
34
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

ABOVE A CROWD OF
JAPANESE WORKERS
WAITING AT A LEVEL
CROSSING IN YOYOGI
STATION
LEFT SALARYMAN
SLEEPING IN THE
SHINKANSEN AT
KYOTO STATION,
WHILE TRAIN
STATION EMPLOYEES
DOUBLE CHECK
THE SAFETY OF
THE PASSENGERS
GETTING ON AND
OFF THE TRAIN

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT, STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

JAPAN’S
GOLDEN
RULE: AVOID
MAKING
WAVES, AT
ALL COSTS

COVER STORY

That’s what karma is all
about. But karma doesn’t
just mean you get what
you deserve, based on your
own individual actions, as
Westerners often think.
It means we all get what
we deserve, based on the
collective actions of everyone,
all the time, everywhere.
That’s a pretty heavy
responsibility, if you think
about it. Sometimes it’s best to
tread lightly.

A LITTLE
POLITENESS
NEVER HURT
ANYONE,
EVEN IF
IT MEANS
SAYING
YES AND
MEANING NO

forgiveness, not so much for
the crime itself but for the
meiwaku they have caused.
Which to most Japanese
makes total sense.
The possibility of being
meiwaku, and the visceral
desire to avoid being meiwaku,
is taken into account pretty
much 24-7 by the Japanese. It
helps explain all kinds of things
in the social sphere, from the
pervasive conservatism, to the
almost irresistible pressure to
conform. Risk-taking, after all,
can lead to failure. And failure

is meiwaku. Standing out can
mean being offensive. And
that’s meiwaku. (Read on for
some notable exceptions).
Though most Japanese
these days are Buddhist only
when it comes time to attend
a funeral, sensitivity to the
impact of what you do on the
lives of those around you is an
essential way of looking at
the world in accordance
with the country’s Buddhist
tradition, which posits that
all things are fundamentally
intertwined as one.

Many, if not most, visitors
to Japan marvel at how polite
the Japanese are. After more
than 30 years, I can attest that
it’s true. They really, really are
polite, sometimes to the point
of almost being annoying.
People hate to say no, even
if they have absolutely no
intention of doing whatever
a “yes” might entail. The
real pillars of politeness are
folks aged over 70 years of
age. It is in these people, and
particularly in the ones who
survived World War II, that
you see politeness that’s not
merely motivated by the
meiwaku principle or social
convenience. This brand
of politeness stems from a
kind of intuitive empathy or
compassion, which only
those who have really
experienced hardship can
instinctively grasp.
Even so, to see Japanese
politeness in action, one
need only take a ride on the
social pressure-cooker of
the rush hour subway, where

the patience and manners of
millions of Japanese, young
and old, are put to the test
every day.
At even the most crowded
times of the day, commuters
do indeed wait in orderly
lines. No one gets on until
everyone who needs to, has
exited the train. Once seated,
only the most obtuse person
would dare cross his legs, or
fully open a newspaper, since
doing either would invade the
personal space of anyone in
the immediate vicinity. People
are quiet. Mobile phones have
their ringers turned off. If
there is a delay, the engineer
will inevitably get on the
PA system to promptly, and
soothingly, apologise.
Nevertheless, those who
have lived here a long time
are painfully aware that,
while the level of politeness
is still world-class, there are
some big caveats. Again, one
needs look no further than
the trains. During rush hour,
subways have cars reserved
for women passengers
because of the groping
problem, which speaks to the
fact that generalisations about
how well-behaved people are,
do contain some obvious blind
spots. Virtually all subways
and trains now have “priority
seats” reserved for the
elderly, the disabled and
pregnant women. Which
ironically, is another sign of
eroding manners.
Back in the 1980s, when
I first took up residence in
Tokyo, there was no need

35
APRIL 2015

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT(LEFT AND FAR LEFT) STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

for the signs: relinquishing
your spot was a given. Yet
as evidence of how this sort
of thinking has eroded, the
creation of priority seats
in turn generated a new
problem. Passengers in
regular seats stopped caring
if the person standing in front
of them was old, pregnant
or on crutches. At one point,
it got so bad that a national
debate broke out over
whether all seats should be
marked as priority, just to
shame people into doing the
right thing. The offenders
generally seem to have

36
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

received the message. Most
people do now get up.

APOLOGISING,
AND
WEASELING
OUT OF
APOLOGISING,
ARE BOTH
AN ART
Like everyone else, the
Japanese are certainly
capable of doing rude things
and making a tremendous

nuisance of themselves. But
how they deal with ‘fessing up,
especially on the public stage,
can itself be enlightening.
Forged over centuries of
feudal rule, when failure to
please one’s samurai overlord
could very well end in death
— slitting one’s own belly
with a second standing by
to quickly lop off your head
was the most honourable
way out — the Japanese
understandably take
apologies very seriously.
But since truly admitting
you were wrong can lead
to expectations of showy

displays of contrition (all
the way up to suicide), the
most masterful apologies are
generally not apologies at all.
Many of Japan’s neighbours
are still waiting for an apology
for World War II, although
the government insists it has
already done so.
Chief executives accused
of the worst corporate
malfeasance can sometimes
get away with a deep bow
before the cameras, and
a few moments of public
humiliation, before
transitioning to a very
happy retirement.

COVER
COVERSTORY
STORY

InInthe
theeyes
eyesofofthe
theJapanese,
Japanese,
allallbut
butthe
therarest
rarestofofpublic
public
apologies
apologiesare
aretaken
takenasasa akind
kind
ofofperformance
performanceart.
art.IfIfdone
done
with
withenough
enoughvigour,
vigour,even
even
the
themost
mostvapid
vapidand
andinsincere
insincere
apology
apologywill
willoften
oftenbebeaccepted
accepted
with
withsurprising
surprisinggrace.
grace.
Take,
Take,for
forexample,
example,smallsmalltime
timelocal
localpolitician
politicianRyutaro
Ryutaro
Nonomura
Nonomura——and
andthe
the
breakout
breakoutstar
starofofJapan’s
Japan’smost
most
viral
viralvideo
videoofof2014.
2014.He
Hehad
had
been
beenaccused
accusedofofusing
usingpublic
public
funds
fundstotomake
makea awhopping
whopping
195
195seemingly
seeminglypersonal
personaltrips,
trips,
many
manytotohot
hotspring
springresorts,
resorts,
which
whichinintime
timecost
costtaxpayers
taxpayers

about
aboutthree
threemillion
millionyen
yen
(US$30,000).
(US$30,000).
InInthe
theworld
worldofofJapanese
Japanese
politics,
politics,that’s
that’snot
notgood,
good,
but
butit’s
it’shardly
hardlya ashocker.
shocker.
Yet
Yetinstead
insteadofofgoing
goingquietly
quietly
down
downthe
thewalk-of-shame
walk-of-shameinto
into
oblivion,
oblivion,Nonomura,
Nonomura,atata anews
news
conference,
conference,plunged
plungedinto
intoa a
three-hour
three-hourdisplay
displayofoftearful
tearful
histrionics,
histrionics,replete
repletewith
withloud
loud
wailing
wailingand
andwatch-out-he’swatch-out-he’scrazy-style
crazy-stylearm
armwaving
wavingthat
that
caught
caughthis
hismedia
mediaquestioners
questioners
completely
completelyoff
offguard.
guard.
Nonomura
Nonomurawill
willalmost
almost
certainly
certainlynever
neverbebetaken
taken
seriously
seriouslyagain.
again.But
Butdespite
despite

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, another
, anotherWestern
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recently
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theJapan
JapanTimes
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, is
, isa atricky
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?’?’I ask
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shirt.’”Yet
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themost
mostcommon
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Here’s
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urban
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afterrobbing
robbing
Fukutoku
FukutokuBank
BankofofUS$5.4
US$5.4million
million
inin1994
1994——the
thelargest
largestheist
heistinin
Japan’s
Japan’shistory
historyatatthe
thetime
time——the
the
robbers
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notetotothe
thebank.
bank.
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“Wecan
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thisloot
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life”

PHOTO: CORBIS (MAIN, OPPOSITE)
PHOTO: CORBIS (MAIN, OPPOSITE)

AN
ANEXPLOSION
EXPLOSIONOF
OFREGRET
REGRET
InInsouthern
southernJapan,
Japan,they
theyused
used
totocall
callit it“pineapple
“pineappleseason”
season”
——ananinnocuous
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termfor
forthe
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annihilateeach
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other.But
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after
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both
bothgangs
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marched
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localpolice
policestation
stationinin2013.
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“For
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longtime
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madeeveryone
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declared
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CO-WORKERS
CO-WORKERSENJOYING
ENJOYING
THE
THEVIEW
VIEWON
ONFUJI
FUJI
MOUNTAIN
MOUNTAINFROM
FROMTHEIR
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PRIME
PRIMEMINISTER'S
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RESIDENCE
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PIXEL-SIZED
PIXEL-SIZEDPHONES
PHONES
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mightjust
justbebea asaint
sainttotopeople
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onon
pg39
pg39

3737
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

all the tears and seemingly
Biblical-level contrition, he
actually yammered on about
what a great guy he is, how he
was only trying to make the
world a better place to live in,
and how he was just really,
really misunderstood. It was
a masterful performance of
“apology art”.

LIVING ON
A VOLCANIC
ISLAND IS
THE BEST!
EXCEPT THAT
IT TOTALLY
SUCKS
To most foreigners, the
kamikaze were World War
II Japanese pilots on suicide
missions who crashed their
own aircraft into Allied ships,
even if that meant sacrificing
one’s own life — a symbol
of fanaticism, desperation
and futility.
The Japanese have a
different take on the word.
Back In the 13th century,
Kublai Khan had expanded
his Mongol empire about as
far east as it could go. But he
wanted Japan. So, in 1274,
he sent a huge fleet of ships.
Fortuitously for Japan, he did
so during the typhoon season.
The assault failed.
When he tried again
in 1281, the same thing
happened. Typhoons,
normally the bane of summer
and autumn, saved Japan
from becoming part of Kublai
Khan’s domain, and these
two were dubbed the “divine
winds”, or kamikaze. As every
schoolchild here learns, being
an island nation gave Japan
the buffer that it needed
to survive: and the room it
needed to develop its own
unique culture, borrowing
heavily from, but never
being assimilated into, the
civilisation of China.
38
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

Even today, the Japanese
like to talk about their
shimaguni konjo or islander
spirit. When used in a positive
way, it’s a boast of hardiness,
ingenuity, self-reliance and
a strong sense of being one
tightly-knit nation. But it is
also just as often stated as a
self-criticism or complaint.
It’s not uncommon for
Japanese to blame their lessthan-stellar abilities to learn
foreign languages — despite
countless compulsory classes
throughout their school years
— on the fact that they live on
an island where everybody
speaks Japanese anyway.

Many people are also
increasingly aware that while
homogeneity has its benefits,
so too does ethnic and cultural
diversity, especially in today’s
global society. The Japanese
are now embroiled in a heated
political discussion over
Kublai Khan’s domain, and
these two were dubbed the
“divine winds”, or kamikaze.
Along with those typhoons,
Japan is one of the most
seismically vulnerable
nations on the globe — as the
earthquake and tsunami of 2011
proved yet again. Even Mount
Fuji, the nation’s most potent
symbol, is an active volcano.

If it blows, Tokyo could be the
world’s next Pompeii.

DRINK LIKE
A SAILOR
WHEN THE
CHERRIES
BLOSSOM.
REMEMBER,
NOTHING
LASTS
FOREVER
Every spring, the weather
forecasts on all of Japan’s

COVER
COVERSTORY
STORY
HANAMI,
HANAMI,
THE
THE
JAPANESE
JAPANESE
TRADITIONAL
TRADITIONAL
CUSTOM
CUSTOM
OFOF
ENJOYING
ENJOYING
THE
THE
TRANSIENT
TRANSIENT
BEAUTY
BEAUTY
OFOF
FLOWERS,
FLOWERS,
PARTICULARLY
PARTICULARLY
CHERRY
CHERRY
BLOSSOMS,
BLOSSOMS,
TAKES
TAKES
PLACE
PLACE
ININ
PARKS
PARKS
ACROSS
ACROSS
THE
THE
COUNTRY
COUNTRY

TURNING
TURNINGJAPANESE
JAPANESE
FLY
FLYWITH
WITHPOKEMON
POKEMON
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including
includingthe
theaviation
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Look,there’s
there’sananAllAll
Nippon
Nippon
Airways
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Boeing
Boeing
747
747
plastered
plastered
with
with
Pokemon
Pokemon
characters.
characters.There’s
There’sananEVA
EVAAir
AirAirbus
AirbusA330
A330boasting
boasting
a athree-storey
three-storeytall
tallHello
HelloKitty
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cosmetic
cosmeticsurgery
surgeryisisalso
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Japan,
with
withmany
manygirls
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maketheir
their
teeth
teethcrooked
crooked——which
whichfans
fanssay
saycreates
createsa acute,
cute,
innocent
innocentlook
look

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT(MAIN); GETTY IMAGES (CAPSULE HOTEL,); CORBIS (JACK DORSEY) STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT(MAIN); GETTY IMAGES (CAPSULE HOTEL,); CORBIS (JACK DORSEY) STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

BELOW
BELOW
THE
THE
NAKAGIN
NAKAGIN
CAPSULE
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TOWER
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ISIS
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EMBLEMATIC
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JAPAN'S
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CULTURAL
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He’sknown
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bookWabi-Sabi
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and
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saysisiswabi-sabi
wabi-sabi
, ,
would
wouldhave
haveloved
lovedTwitter
Twitter
3939
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

A JAPANESE COSPLAYER
AT THE ENTRANCE OF
YOYOGI PARK, EMBODIES
THE JAPANESE CONCEPT
OF KAWAII, AKA
CUTENESS OVERLOAD
40
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT(COSPLAYER, MAID CAFE) STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

COVER STORY

major television networks
begin the countdown,
tracking a frontline that
begins in the south and
gradually works its way up
north: the progression of the
blossoming of the cherry trees
across the nation.
It is crucial information,
because when the cherries
blossom, millions of Japanese
stop whatever they are doing
and go outside to party. Under
seemingly every available
cherry tree, they spread out
plastic sheets, prepare picnic
feasts and drink like there is
no tomorrow. This is Japan at
its most festive.
Without doubt, a cherry
tree in full bloom is a lovely
sight to see. And everybody
loves an excuse to let off
steam and party. But the true
appeal of the cherry blossom
to the Japanese is that it is so
ephemeral. There is this burst
of beauty, and then, within the
span of only a week or two, it’s
all gone.
Due to the vagaries of the
weather, you can never be
sure exactly when it will start
or finish. If blossom time
happens to also coincide
with a lot of wind or rain, it
may all be ruined. But to be
out enjoying it all with your
friends or family, on a sunny
day when the trees are in full
bloom, is a tremendously
joyous occasion for all.
Sakura, which means
cherry blossom, is the
perfect analogy of life itself:
fleeting, and contingent
on forces that are both
inscrutable and beyond
your control. But still,
magnificently sublime. It is
a phenomenon, a blessing,
that is to be appreciated
and savoured. Because,
inevitably and all too soon, it
will end.
On a slightly different
level, I believe that this very
deeply rooted aesthetic is also
linked to another well-known
attribute of Japan’s pop

culture and consumer society,
its fascination with crazes and
fads, the weirder the better.
Rarely have I heard
someone here write off a pop
culture phenomenon with the
words “it won’t last”. A more
Japanese response would be:
“It won’t last. So enjoy it while
you can”.

NO MATTER
HOW LITTLE
SPACE YOU
HAVE, IT
WILL FIT
Size matters. Especially
when you have more than 127
million people all scrunched
up into a country about the
size of California, most of
which is mountainous and
uninhabitable. More than
another nation, the Japanese
know the value of space, and
how to make the absolute
most of it. It was Japan, after
all, that gave the world the

transistor radio. Automakers
like Toyota, Nissan and
Mitsubishi went on to make
billions selling compact
urban-style cars. And while
nature lovers elsewhere were
out taking walks in the forest,
the Japanese were perfecting
the bonsai, the art of creating
miniature trees.
The examples are endless.
From folding fans to futon
mattresses that can be
neatly stored away in a small
closet, from Sony’s iconic
Walkman to “capsule hotels”,
where guests sleep in stacks
of casket-sized beds, the
Japanese are the masters of
miniaturisation.
Yet in the race to create
smaller-is-better products
and technology, once so
synonymous with the “Made
in Japan” label, Japan appears
to be losing its cultural edge.
According to statistics quoted
by the specialty magazine
Nano, the US led the world in
nanotechnology patents
at the end of 2012, followed

by Japan, South Korea
and Taiwan.
So while this particular
lesson might already have
been tapped by clever
entrepreneurs and cuttingedge scientists abroad,
Japanese culture still stands
out in terms of simply
appreciating the aesthetic
of how good things come in
small packages. Which is
surely something to remind
the kids of at Christmas time.

KAWAII! CUTE
IS THE NEW
BEAUTIFUL.
APPRECIATE
IT, BE IT
No look at contemporary
Japan would be complete
without at least some attempt
to understand what is going
on with all the cuteness out
there. Of all the pop culture
exports to come out of Japan,
Hello Kitty really says it all.

ABOVE THE AT HOME MAID CAFE IN AKIHABARA, TOKYO. MALE CUSTOMERS
VISIT MAID CAFES TO TALK, FLIRT AND DRINK TEA WITH GIRLS DRESSED IN
MAID UNIFORMS, THOUGH ANYTHING MORE IS FROWNED UPON
41
APRIL 2015

PHOTOS JEREMIE SOUTEYRAT(MAIN); STICKERS LINE CORPORATION; DREAMSTIME

BLURRED LINES

Why have we peppered our cover and these pages
with cute, rotund stickers of animated characters?
You may be surprised to hear that the answer
encapsulates Japanese engineering, earthquakes
and anime.
"Line" is a messaging app with a difference.
The Korean-owned, Japan-based company fronts
its technology with 12 animated characters, each
with their own little bio. Seemingly translated from
Japanese, the one for Brown the bear should give
you a taste: his “facial expressions don’t give away
much, but the bear has a heart of gold”. They are
kawaii cuteness personified.
But there’s a serious heart of gold at the core
of this app too. Released just two months after the
devastating 2011 earthquake — a chaotic time for
Japan, Jun Masuda, an executive for the company
told press. People were not able to communicate
with telephones or email services from mobile
carriers and we wanted as many people as possible
to carry out a conversation.”
"Line" is certainly achieving its goal. At the start
of 2013, the app had been downloaded 100 million
times worldwide. A year later that figure was even
higher with 50 million users in Japan using it, along
with 22 million Thais, 20 million Indonesians and
16 million people in India and Spain, to name just a
few countries. Cuteness is global, it seems.
"Line" has also expanded its efforts, becoming a
force for good. After a similarly devastating natural
disaster struck the Philippines, the app was used
as a fundraising tool that garnered US$500,000 for
hurricane relief. The characters, meanwhile, now
have their own line of plush toys, mobile games,
and even an Uber-style app in Tokyo. Buying
groceries in Thailand? You can now use "Line" for
that, and enjoy 50 percent discounts on certain
products — though alas, we doubt that your bags
will be sent to your door by deliverymen in brown
bear costumes.
More characters and their "Line" bios:
Cony: “Yes, the rabbit is sometimes moody but is
usually very happy and full of energy!”
Moon: “This one has many personalities. You never
know what will be happening next with this one.”
James: “He cares about his appearance over
everything else. Annoying, but you have to love him!
42
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEIJI-JINGU GARDEN IS AN
EXAMPLE OF WABI-SABI, A
JAPANESE AESTHETIC OF
THINGS BEING IMPERFECT,
IMPERMANENT, AND
INCOMPLETE

COVER
COVER
STORY
STORY

FAR
FAR
LEFT
LEFT
JAPANESE
JAPANESE
COSPLAY
COSPLAY
FASHION
FASHION
GIRLS
GIRLS
POSE
POSE
IN IN
A PARK.
A PARK.
THE
THE
JAPANESE
JAPANESE
TAKE
TAKE
THEIR
THEIR
"CUTE"
"CUTE"
VERY
VERY
SERIOUSLY!
SERIOUSLY!
LEFT
LEFT
JAPANESE
JAPANESE
TOURISTS
TOURISTS
ENJOY
ENJOY
CHERRY
CHERRY
BLOSSOM
BLOSSOM
IN IN
ARASHIYAMA.
ARASHIYAMA.
ARASHIYAMA
ARASHIYAMA
IN IN
THE
THE
WESTERN
WESTERN
OUTSKIRTS
OUTSKIRTS
OFOF
KYOTO
KYOTO
BEEN
BEEN
A POPULAR
A POPULAR
DESTINATION
DESTINATION
DURING
DURING
CHERRY
CHERRY
BLOSSOM
BLOSSOM
SINCE
SINCE
THE
THE
8TH
8TH
CENTURY
CENTURY

The
The
fictional
fictional
character,
character,
produced
produced
byby
the
the
Japanese
Japanese
company
company
Sanrio,
Sanrio,
is more
is more
than
than
a little
a little
girl
girl
depicted
depicted
asas
a white
a white
Japanese
Japanese
bobtail
bobtail
catcat
with
with
a red
a red
bow.
bow.
She’s
She’s
a global
a global
marketing
marketing
phenomenon,
phenomenon,
who
who
celebrated
celebrated
her
her
40th
40th
birthday
birthday
inin
2014.
2014.
The
The
Japanese
Japanese
word
word
forfor
cute
cute
. If. If
you
you
have
have
plans
plans
is kawaii
is kawaii
toto
come
come
toto
Japan,
Japan,
and
and
want
want
toto
learn
learn
one
one
useful
useful
word,
word,
gogo
kawaii
kawaii
. At. At
times
times
it seems
it seems
with
with
like
like
that’s
that’s
the
the
only
only
adjective
adjective
some
some
Japanese
Japanese
women
women
under
under
the
the
age
age
of of
about
about
2323
know,
know,
too.
too.
Okay,
Okay,
that’s
that’s
anan
overstatement.
overstatement.
OnOn
a superficial
a superficial
level,
level,
it it
is hard
is hard
toto
bebe
anti-cute.
anti-cute.
How
How
can
can
you
you
not
not
like
like
cute?
cute?
It’sIt’s
like
like
saying
saying
you
you
don’t
don’t
like
like
babies.
babies.
OrOr
kittens.
kittens.
WeWe
areare
asas
a species,
a species,
hardwired
hardwired
toto
feel
feel
allall
warm
warm
and
and
fuzzy
fuzzy
when
when
wewe
seesee
bigbig
doe
doe
eyes,
eyes,
toto
feel
feel
protective
protective
of of
a vulnerable
a vulnerable
infant,
infant,
oror
toto
want
want
toto
just
just
give
give
a big
a big
hug
hug
toto
a sweet,
a sweet,
guileless
guileless
child.
child.
But
But
the
the
Japanese
Japanese
of of
today
today
have
have
anan
appetite
appetite
forfor
allall
things
things
cute
cute
which
which
sometimes
sometimes
seems
seems
toto
border
border
onon
addiction.
addiction.
Is Is
this,
this,
asas
some
some
have
have
argued,
argued,
the
the
symptom
symptom
of of
a a
nation
nation
(and
(and
particularly
particularly
itsits
men)
men)
soso
afraid
afraid
of of
growing
growing
upup
and
and
living
living
inin
anan
adult
adult
world
world
that
that
it must
it must
seek
seek
refuge
refuge
inin
infantile
infantile
cuddliness?
cuddliness?
A good
A good
look
look
at at
the
the
popular
popular
anime
anime
character
character
Sailor
Sailor
Moon,
Moon,
who
who
has
has
the
the
ponytail
ponytail
and
and
demeanor
demeanor
of of
a girl
a girl
inin
her
her
early
early
teens,
teens,
but
but
the
the
body
body
of of
a Vegas
a Vegas
showgirl,
showgirl,
does
does
seem
seem
toto
point
point
inin
that
that
direction.
direction.
There
There
is is
lotlot
of of
room
room
forfor
some
some
serious
serious
study
study
into
into
this
this
matter.
matter.
I however
I however
have
have
mymy
own
own
theory,
theory,
and
and
it’sit’s
a little
a little
less
less
judgmental.
judgmental.
Beauty
Beauty
is is
intimidating,
intimidating,
perfection
perfection
unattainable.
unattainable.
Cute
Cute
has
has
elements
elements
of of
both,
both,
but
but
isn’t
isn’t
quite
quite
either.
either.
That’s
That’s
what
what
makes
makes
it so
it so
approachable,
approachable,
and
and
soso
appealing.
appealing.
Cute
Cute
is nonis nonthreatening.
threatening.
It’sIt’s
comforting.
comforting.
And
And
that
that
is exactly
is exactly
what
what

postwar
postwar
Japan,
Japan,
and
and
today’s
today’s
post-economic
post-economic
miracle
miracle
Japan,
Japan,
really
really
crave.
crave.
While
While
the
the
peculiar
peculiar
sexysexykawaii
kawaii
appeals
appeals
cute
cute
variety
variety
of of
especially
especially
toto
young
young
men,
men,
the
the
attraction
attraction
of of
cute
cute
——
being
being
kawaii,
kawaii,
surrounding
surrounding
oneself
oneself
with
with
kawaii,
kawaii,
using
using
kawaii
kawaii
asas
the
the
highest
highest
form
form
of of
flattery
flattery
——
is extremely
is extremely
strong
strong
forfor
young
young
Japanese
Japanese
women,
women,
and
and
largely
largely
forfor
the
the
same
same
reasons.
reasons.
ToTo
bebe
beautiful
beautiful
is to
is to
be,be,
byby
definition,
definition,
above
above
average
average
and
and
somewhat
somewhat
apart
apart
from
from
your
your
kawaii
kawaii
, however,
, however,
peers.
peers.
ToTo
bebe
is to
is to
shine
shine
from
from
somewhere
somewhere
inin
the
the
middle.
middle.

HOW
HOWTO
TO
SOLVE
SOLVE
THE
THEDIVA
DIVA
DILEMMA:
DILEMMA:
CREATE
CREATEGIRL
GIRL
GROUPS
GROUPS
WITH
WITHAA
ZILLION
ZILLION
MEMBERS
MEMBERS

Back
Back
inin
the
the
day,
day,
there
there
were
were
singers.
singers.
Since
Since
the
the
advent
advent
of of
television,
television,
the
the
most
most
popular
popular
were
were
young
young
and
and
pretty.
pretty.
More
More
often
often
than
than
not,
not,
they
they
could
could
also
also
sing,
sing,
which
which
required
required
talent.
talent.
And
And
if they
if they
became
became
stars,
stars,
they
they
could
could
cause
cause
allall
kinds
kinds
of of
headaches.
headaches.
They’d
They’d
getget
sick,
sick,
leave
leave
the
the
business,
business,
gogo
diva
diva
and
and
demand
demand
more
more
money
money
——
oror
just
just
generally
generally
trytry
toto
assert
assert
themselves
themselves
inin
ways
ways
that
that
made
made
lifelife
forfor
industry
industry
bigwigs
bigwigs
less
less
fun
fun
and
and
less
less
profitable.
profitable.
Japan’s
Japan’s
fabled
fabled
group
group
mentality,
mentality,
and
and
the
the
cuteness
cuteness
addiction
addiction
wewe
just
just
examined,
examined,
offers
offers
a solution
a solution
toto
allall
of of
that.
that.
The
The
biggest
biggest
actact
inin
Japanese
Japanese
entertainment
entertainment
today,
today,
and
and
according
according
toto
the
the
Guinness
Guinness
Book
Book
of of
World
World
Records,
Records,
the
the
largest
largest
pop
pop
group
group
inin
the
the
world,
world,
is called
is called
AKB48.
AKB48.
Since
Since
their
their
creation
creation
inin
2005,
2005,
they
they
43 43
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

PHOTOS GETTY IMAGES (LINE STORE, OTAKU), STICKERS LINE CORPORATION

have raked in hundreds of
millions of dollars, produced
record numbers of number
one hits in the country,
and changed Japan’s music
scene tremendously.
The AKB is short for
Akihabara, a neighborhood
in Tokyo famous for its nerd
culture, while 48 refers
to the original size of the
group. AKB48 was created
as an alternative to Japan’s
longstanding love affair with
“idol singers,” cute young
things who perform either
solo or in groups of three-tofive members, usually in the
teens or early 20s. AKB48
bought them down from their
pedestal by making them
seem more approachable,
more like the girl-next-door
and virtually interchangeable.
Rather than making fans
wait for concert tours, the
band members, still drawn
from the teen or early 20s
demographic, perform daily
in their own theatre, and
participate in a constant
torrent of meet-and-greet
opportunities off stage,
with their legions of fans.
The members, who now
number about 140, are
chosen in a public vote,
giving them something of
an American Idol appeal,
and are constantly in flux
as older members graduate
out and younger ones
enter in, meaning there are
always fresh new faces to get
infatuated with.

44
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

They ostensibly follow
strict rules: no nudity, no
dating. But their producer and
lyric writer, Yasushi Akimoto,
has been called out on
several occasions for pushing
the envelope with their
unabashedly risqué Lolita-like
charm. Nevertheless, AKB48
has been so wildly successful
— and hugely profitable — that
it has spawned spinoffs all
across Asia.

IF YOU HAVE
A HOBBY,
DEVOTE
YOUR HEART
AND SOUL
TO IT
The Japanese respect
obsession. To totally devote
oneself to something — to
master it, to embody it — is
seen as a great virtue in
Japanese society. As long as
it doesn’t create meiwaku
(and, actually, sometimes
even if it does, so long as the
devotion is pure enough)
what that something is
doesn’t particularly matter.
It can be a martial art, some
bizarre cosplay, amassing
a collection of miniature
figurines — even the perverts
who specialise in clandestine
upskirt photography can
enter the Japanese pantheon
of superhuman singlemindedness. It is no surprise,
then, that the word otaku has
become part of the
global lexicon.
Though most closely
associated with devotees
of manga comics, anime
(Japanese animated
productions featuring
hand-drawn or computer
animation) and girl groups
like AKB48, the personality
type described by the
term runs through most
of Japanese history and
folklore. It has a strong

AKIHABARA DISTRICT IN TOKYO
HAS BECOME A MAJOR TOURIST
ATTRACTION AND OTAKU CULTURAL
CENTRE. OTAKU IS A JAPANESE
TERM FOR PEOPLE WITH OBSESSIVE
INTERESTS AND IS OFTEN
ASSOCIATED WITH THE ANIME AND
MANGA MOVEMENTS

emphasis on men (to a lesser
extent, women) who push
themselves to their absolute
limits to completely master
a chosen pursuit. If one is
clearly taking their otakuness seriously, extremism
is not only allowed, but
encouraged. The otaku
personality type also
dovetails nicely with the
Japanese work ethic (since
it involves such intense
effort) and attention to detail.

Indeed, the headfirst plunge
into seemingly trivial hobbies
offers some people a muchneeded escape from the
realities of day-to-day life.
To be called an otaku is not
necessarily a compliment,
however. Like the words
geek and nerd, which have
similar connotations, otaku
are sometimes stereotyped in
Japan as creepy loners.
Tsutomu Miyazaki for one
completely fitted that bill.

COVER
COVERSTORY
STORY

lifestyle
for
centuries
has
been
lifestyle
for
centuries
has
been
what
the
Japanese
call
wabiwhat
the
Japanese
call
wabisabi,
another
notoriously
sabi,
another
notoriously
difficult-to-translate
concept
difficult-to-translate
concept
that
essentially
extorts
the
that
essentially
extorts
the
profound
nature
ofof
both
profound
nature
both
simplicity
and
imperfection.
simplicity
and
imperfection.
ItIt
has
itsits
roots
inin
Zen
has
roots
Zen
Buddhism’s
focus
onon
the
Buddhism’s
focus
the
intrinsic
value
——
and
beauty
——
intrinsic
value
and
beauty
ofof
everything,
warts
and
all.
everything,
warts
and
all.
According
toto
artist
According
artist
wabi-sabi
wabi-sabi
Leonard
Koren,
Leonard
Koren,
can
can
bebe
defined
defined
asas
“the
“the
most
most
conspicuous
conspicuous
and
and
characteristic
characteristic
feature
feature
ofof
traditional
traditional
Japanese
Japanese
beauty
beauty
and
and
it it
occupies
occupies
roughly
roughly
the
the
same
same
position
position
inin
the
the
Japanese
Japanese
pantheon
pantheon
ofof
aesthetic
aesthetic
values
values
asas
dodo
the
the
Greek
Greek
ideals
ideals
ofof
beauty
beauty
and
and
perfection
perfection
inin
the
the
West.”
West.”
ItIt
is is
crystalised
crystalised
inin
the
the
tea
tea
ceremony,
ceremony,
which
which
turns
turns
the
the
simple
simple
act
act
ofof
making
making
a cup
a cup
ofof
tea
tea
into
into
a ritualised
a ritualised
journey
journey
into
into
the
the
profundity
profundity
ofof
the
the
seemingly
seemingly
mundane.
mundane.
One
One
ofof
my
my
favourite
favourite
wabi-sabi
wabi-sabi
from
from
aa
takes
takes
onon
Westerner’s
Westerner’s
viewpoint
viewpoint
comes
comes
from
from
Robyn
Robyn
Griggs
Griggs
Lawrence,
Lawrence,
the
the
American
American
author
author
ofof
Simply
Simply
Imperfect:
Imperfect:
Revisiting
Revisiting
. “.Wabi“Wabithe
the
Wabi-Sabi
Wabi-Sabi
House
House
is is
a logical
a logical
reaction
reaction
toto
sabi
sabi
a society
a society
disgusted
disgusted
with
with
itsits
own
own
excess,”
excess,”
she
she
wrote
wrote
inin
aa
2009
2009
essay
essay
collection.
collection.
“But
“But
the
the
beauty
beauty
inin
it it
is is
that
that
it’sit’s
not
not
a bitter
a bitter
condemnation
condemnation
——
it’sit’s
a change
a change
inin
perspective,”
perspective,”
is is
she
she
noted.
noted.
“Wabi-sabi
“Wabi-sabi
imperfect:
imperfect:
a beloved
a beloved
chipped
chipped
vase
vase
oror
a scarred
a scarred
wooden
wooden
table.
table.
This
This
getting-away-fromgetting-away-fromvegetables
vegetables
and
and
drinking
drinking
his
his
He
isis
remembered
inin
Japan
wabi-sabi
wabi-sabi
’s ’s
He
remembered
Japan
perfect
perfect
is is
one
one
ofof
ofof
anime
and
horror
films,
anime
and
horror
films,
tea
from
from
a chipped
a chipped
cup.
cup.
Well,
Well, most
asas
one
ofof
the
most
feared
and
most
appealing
appealing
facets.”
facets.”
one
the
most
feared
and along
with
footage
ofof
his
own
along
with
footage
his
own tea
you
you
can
can
if if
you
you
like.
like.
But
But
many
many
depraved
serial
killers
inin
the
Unfortunately,
Unfortunately,
inin
today’s
today’s
depraved
serial
killers
the victims,
inin
his
comic
book
victims,
his
comic
book
Japanese
actually
actually
don’t.
don’t.
InIn
country’s
modern
history
for
Japan
Japan
the
the
desire
desire
for
for
excess
excess
country’s
modern
history
for and
pornography
filled
room.
and
pornography
filled
room. Japanese
fact,
fact,
they
they
consider
consider
it it
toto
bebe
aa
kidnapping
and
murdering
seems
seems
toto
have
have
replaced
replaced
the
the
kidnapping
and
murdering
life
life
ofof
sublime
sublime
refinement
refinement
and
and ancient
(and
then
dismembering
ancient
appreciation
appreciation
ofof
(and
then
dismembering
beauty
beauty
(though
(though
most
most
would
would
and
partially
cannibalising)
refined
refined
poverty.
poverty.
But
But
inin
their
their
and
partially
cannibalising)
personally
personally
prefer
prefer
toto
enjoy
enjoy
four
girls
inin
the
late
1980s.
more
more
quiet
quiet
moments,
moments,
when
when
four
girls
the
late
1980s.
and
and
spend
spend
time
time
carousing
carousing
inin
a a they
He
was
dubbed
the
“Otaku
they
tire
tire
ofof
bar
bar
crawling
crawling
under
under
He
was
dubbed
the
“Otaku
garish
garish
bar
barsinging
singing
karaoke).
karaoke).
murderer”
because
after
the
the
neon-lit
neon-lit
nights
nights
ofof
Shibuya
Shibuya
murderer”
because
after
While
While
inin
today’s
today’s
Japan
Japan
it it
is is and
his
arrest,
police
found
and
the
the
pink-frill
pink-frill
assaults
assaults
his
arrest,
police
found
largely
largely
just
just
given
given
liplip
service,
service, ofof
a collection
ofof
5,763
anan
AKB48
AKB48
concert,
concert,
the
the
a collection
5,763
Pity
Pity
the
the
poor
poor
monk,
monk,
living
living
inin one
wabiwabione
ofof
the
the
driving
driving
aesthetics
aesthetics Japanese
videotapes,
which
included
Japanese
always
always
have
have
videotapes,
which
included
toto
fall
fall
back
back
on.
on.
a simple
a simple
hut,
hut,
eating
eating
pickled
pickled
sabi
sabi
ofof
art,
art,
design
design
and
and
even
even
anan
impressive
collection
impressive
collection

NOTHING
NOTHING
IS
ISPERFECT,
PERFECT,
AND
ANDTHAT’S
THAT’S
AN
ANART
ARTTOO
TOO

4545
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

AXE THAT

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

WHAT EXACTLY ARE FEAR AND ANXIETY? LUKE CLARK
EXAMINES THE SCIENCE BEHIND THESE EMOTIONS AND
DELVES INTO WHY THESE FEELINGS ASSAIL US

46
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

ANXIETY
ANXIETY

INTO
INTO
THE
THE
MIND
MIND

47 47
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

“IT IS PITCH BLACK
OUT. THERE ARE
STILL SEVERAL
HOURS BEFORE THE
MUEZZIN’S CALL,
MARKING THE END OF
THE NIGHT. I WOULD
GIVE EVERYTHING
I HAVE TO BE WITH
DANNY AT THIS
MOMENT, WHEREVER
HE MIGHT BE.”
IT MAY BE A FIRST
PERSON ACCOUNT
OF AN EXPERIENCE
DISTANT AND REMOTE
FOR MOST OF US, YET
EVEN AT PAGE 33 OF
MARIANE PEARL’S
PERSONAL MEMOIR,
A MIGHTY HEART, YOU
ARE RIGHT IN THE
DARKEST OF KARACHI
NIGHTS IMAGINABLE.
AND AS A READER,
YOU’VE ALREADY
STARTED ENDURING
THAT PIT-OF-YOURSTOMACH SENSATION
THAT THE WRITER
WILL CAPTIVATINGLY
ENDURE, AND
EXPLORE: FEAR.
48
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

ecounting her thoughts,
you feel her sickening early
morning realisation, the air
around you choked with the
reality that her husband,
Danny Pearl, is missing in
Pakistan, in a city where no US
journalist wants to go missing.
Especially in early 2002, less
than five months after the 9/11
attacks — and particularly not
if you’re there to interview
those with supposed links to
the perpetrators.

“I know he is not free to
move as he pleases,” his wife
continues. Then painfully, she
launches into a mind-racing
sequence of questions. “Why
didn’t I pay closer attention to
the nature of the rendezvous?
Why wasn’t I more vigilant?
Why didn’t I go with him? I
wasn’t feeling that sick. Why…”
Yet she summons a
corrective force, in a moment
of strength that will typify her
heart-wrenching story. “Stop,

INTO THE MIND

FEAR RESPONSE BEGINS
WITH THE AMYGDALAS,
GROUPS OF NERVE CELLS
IN THE BRAIN THAT, WHEN
FRIGHTENED, RELEASE
NEUROTRANSMITTERS, WHICH
RELAY KEY SIGNALS TO OTHER
PARTS OF THE BRAIN, AND TO
THE BODY ITSELF

I tell myself,” she writes. “Stop
this chain of thought. Regrets
will just waste energy — don’t
question reality.”

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

SAFE YET AFRAID

Don’t question reality. It
could be a great mantra for us
all. Only sadly, for too many
people, a more common reality
seems to be that despite most
of us living a remarkably safe
life, it is still often one that is
crippled by fear.

Daniel Gardner, author of
The Science of Fear, expresses
this dilemma eloquently.
“We are the healthiest,
wealthiest, and longest-lived
people in history. And we are
increasingly afraid. This is
one of the great paradoxes of
our time.”
Despite vaccines, safety
helmets and peace accords
— despite having access to
knowledge that’s as instant
and inexpensive as we’ve

ever had — still, that fearcentre within our body — the
amygdala, located deep within
the temporal lobe of the
brain — remains as busy as
ever. For some of us, this will
mean anxiety or paranoia. For
others, it can leads to phobias
and worse.
Which makes you think.
What exactly is fear? What
might humans be like without
fear? As scientific insights into
our brain’s inner mechanics

OUR FEAR OF
A SHARK
GETTING US IS
GREATER
THAN ACTUALLY
BEING KILLED
BY A CAR
ACCIDENT
OR A HEART
ATTACK
49
APRIL 2015

expand, could a greater
understanding of our fear
factors help us to reprogram
our fear responses, into
something far more useful?
Daniel Gardner begins
his exploration by taking uis
back us to the September 11
2001, attacks on the United
States. In this time of mass
media, they are arguably
our most well known icon
for fearfulness — as an
unmatched act of terrifying
media choreography. “It
was so clear, so intimate. It
was like watching the whole
awful spectacle through the
living room window.” Which
perhaps explains why, in their
droves and still reeling from
their shock, Americans in turn
flocked from one practice, to a
much more dangerous one.

FEAR IS
TYPICALLY
ASSOCIATED
WITH A CLEAR,
PRESENT AND
IDENTIFIABLE
THREAT, WHILE
THE ABSENCE
OF IMMEDIATE
PERIL USUALLY
PRODUCES A
SENSATION
OF ANXIETY
Gardner cites the work
of German researcher
Gerd Gigerenzer of Berlin’s
Max Planck Institute, who

EXPOSE
YOURSELF:
ADVICE FROM
REWIRE YOUR
ANXIOUS
BRAIN
50
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

found that for a year, many
Americans switched from
air travel, to the roads.
“Gigerenzer was able to
calculate the number of
Americans killed in car
accidents as a direct result of
the switch,” writes Gardner.
“It was 1,595.”
And what of those who
lost family and friends on
the roads as a result? “They
thought — they still think —
that they lost husbands, wives,
fathers, mothers, and children
to the routine traffic accidents
we accept as the regrettable
cost of living in the modern
world,” he writes. “They
didn’t. It was fear that stole
their loved ones.”
While something of a leap,
the example does illustrate a
notion of which most of us are
rationally aware. Our fear of
dying of a shark attack, or in
a kidnapping, tends to be far
greater than the “ordinary”
killers that are far more likely
to get us in the end, such as car
accidents or heart attacks. The
problem is, understanding
this sort of “real truth” about
highways and hamburgers,
only tends to make us more
afraid, rather than less.
So what exactly is fear? As
Dr Abigail Marsh, associate
professor of psychology at
Georgetown University, in
the US, explains in a recent
science video, “The Chemistry
of Fear”, the sensation is in
itself an assumption on the
part of our body.
“Fear is the expectation or
the anticipation of possible

harm,” Marsh explains. “We
know that the body is highly
sensitive to the possibility of
threat, so there are multiple
pathways that bring that
fear information into the
brain,” she says. Ground zero
for our fear response in the
brain are the amygdalas, two
almond-sized groups of nerve
cells that in the event of a
frightening stimulus, release
neurotransmitters, in turn
relaying key signals to other
parts of the brain, and on to
the body itself.
There are numerous
possible physical responses to
the initial trigger — including
initially jumping, or freezing.
Then when threatened, fight
or flight. The amygdalas may
summon an adrenaline rush,
or issue a shot of glucose to
the bloodstream, to condition
us to fight off that zombie,
bare handed.
Or, if the fright isn’t actually
physically harmful in nature
— you’ve squealed like a small
child during a scary film scene
— then the adrenaline’s effect
on our heart rate and blood
pressure will simply lead to a
boost of energy and alertness.
And just as it could send in
the troops at the drop of a hat,
the amygdalas can also “dial
down” the brain’s response,
returning you to back to
normal, save for the occasional
embarrassed blush.
Critically for what we’re
exploring, fear is a mixture of
innate response, and learned
response. From the amygdala,
as Marsh explains, the

NO PAIN, NO GAIN

START SLOW

THE FIRST STEP TO ENDING A FEAR IS
BEING BRAVE. “YOU MUST EXPOSE YOURSELF TO FEARED SITUATIONS AND ALLOW
YOURSELF TO EXPERIENCE ANXIETY IF YOU
WANT TO CHANGE YOUR RESPONSE,”
CAUTIONS AUTHOR CATHERINE PITTMAN.
ONLY THEN CAN YOU CHANGE BRAIN CONNECTIONS RESPONSIBLE FOR ANXIETY

PITTMAN USES GOING FOR A SWIM
IN AN ICY LAKE AS AN EXAMPLE.
“AS YOU WADE FURTHER IN, YOU’RE
AWARE OF THE COOLNESS OF THE
WATER AS IT REACHES YOUR STOMACH AND CHEST.” SOON “YOUR BODY
ADJUSTS, AND YOU FIND YOURSELF
COMFORTABLE IN THE WATER”

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES (MAIN)

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES (MAIN)

INTO
INTOTHE
THEMIND
MIND

GET
GETSPECIFIC
SPECIFIC

THE
THESUM
SUMOF
OFALL
ALLFEARS
FEARS

BREAK
BREAK
YOUR
YOUR
FEAR
FEAR
OROR
PHOBIA
PHOBIA
INTO
INTO
AA
HIERARCHICAL
HIERARCHICAL
LIST
LIST
THAT
THAT
STARTS
STARTS
WITH
WITH
THE
THE
LEAST
LEAST
TERRIFYING
TERRIFYING
STEPS,
STEPS,
AND
AND
LEAD
LEAD
TOTO
THE
THE
FEAR
FEAR
EVENT.
EVENT.
SOMEONE
SOMEONE
WHO
WHO
FEARS
FEARS
CROWDS
CROWDS
ATAT
THE
THE
MALL
MALL
MIGHT
MIGHT
INCLUDE
INCLUDE
ELEMENTS
ELEMENTS
LIKE
LIKE
“SELECTING
“SELECTING
ANAN
ITEM
ITEM
TOTO
PURCHASE”
PURCHASE”
OROR
“WALKING
“WALKING
AROUND
AROUND
THE
THE
MALL
MALL
ALONE
ALONE
WHEN
WHEN
IT’S
IT’S
CROWDED”
CROWDED”

ONCE
ONCE
YOU’VE
YOU’VE
RANKED
RANKED
YOUR
YOUR
FEARS,
FEARS,
ASSIGN
ASSIGN
EACH
EACH
A SPECIFIC
A SPECIFIC
LEVEL
LEVEL
OFOF
ANXIETY
ANXIETY
FROM
FROM
ONE
ONE
TOTO
100.
100.
“THEN
“THEN
IT’S
IT’S
TIME
TIME
TOTO
START
START
PRACTICING,
PRACTICING,
WORKING
WORKING
FROM
FROM
THE
THE
LEAST
LEAST
ANXIETY-PROVOKANXIETY-PROVOKING
ING
ITEM
ITEM
TOTO
THE
THE
ONE
ONE
THAT
THAT
WOULD
WOULD
CREATE
CREATE
THE
THE
MOST
MOST
ANXIETY.”
ANXIETY.”
YOU’LL
YOU’LL
EXPERIENCE
EXPERIENCE
A LOT
A LOT
OFOF
NEGATIVE
NEGATIVE
THOUGHTS
THOUGHTS
– TRY
– TRY
TOTO
SUBSTITUTE
SUBSTITUTE
THEM
THEM
WITH
WITH
POSITIVE
POSITIVE
REPLACEMENTS
REPLACEMENTS
5151
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

PROBLEMS ARISE WHEN
ANXIETY INTERFERES WITH
IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF LIFE.
THIS RESULTS IN NERVOUS
RITUALS AND OVER-STATED
APPROXIMATIONS OF A
PERCEIVED THREAT

52
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

PHOTO CORBIS

PHOTO CORBIS

INTO
INTO
THE
THE
MIND
MIND

information
information
is relayed
is relayed
toto
thethe
periaqueductal
periaqueductal
gray,
gray,
which
which
is “deep
is “deep
in in
thethe
recesses
recesses
of of
thethe
very
very
ancient
ancient
brain”.
brain”.
This
This
area,
area,
she
she
says,
says,
is responsible
is responsible
forfor
our
our
inadvertent
inadvertent
jumping,
jumping,
oror
freezing,
freezing,
response
response
toto
thethe
fright.
fright.
“Because
“Because
it’sit’s
such
such
anan
ancient
ancient
part
part
of of
thethe
brain,
brain,
these
these
areare
actually
actually
quite
quite
difficult
difficult
responses
responses
toto
control.”
control.”
The
The
information
information
is also
is also
relayed
relayed
toto
thethe
hypothalamus,
hypothalamus,
which
which
in in
turn
turn
controls
controls
your
your
heart
heart
rate
rate
and
and
blood
blood
pressure
pressure
rising;
rising;
thethe
pumping
pumping
out
out
of of
cortisol
cortisol
and
and
adrenaline;
adrenaline;
oror
if needed,
if needed,
our
our
“fight
“fight
oror
flight”
flight”
response.
response.
Our
Our
initial
initial
response
response
toto
a shock,
a shock,
she
she
says,
says,
is usually
is usually
toto
freeze.
freeze.
“There’s
“There’s
anan
evolutionary
evolutionary
reason
reason
forfor
this,
this,
which
which
is that
is that
movement
movement
will
will
often
often
release
release
predatory
predatory
attacks,”
attacks,”
says
says
Marsh.
Marsh.
If that
If that
fails,
fails,
next
next
upup
you’ll
you’ll
seek
seek
toto
flee
flee
——
oror
if needed,
if needed,
you’ll
you’ll
stay
stay
and
and
fight.
fight.
It It
allall
sounds
sounds
incredibly
incredibly
sensible,
sensible,
in in
terms
terms
of of
our
our
timetimehonoured
honoured
evolutionary
evolutionary
gifts.
gifts.
YetYet
fear
fear
also
also
has
has
a learned
a learned
component
component
too
too
——
which
which
determines
determines
what
what
wewe
have
have
learned
learned
toto
associate
associate
with
with
physical
physical
harm.
harm.
“When
“When
you
you
learn
learn
toto
fear
fear
something,
something,
you
you
areare
learning
learning
toto
fear
fear
something
something
that
that
triggers
triggers
thethe
actual
actual
threat,
threat,
oror
something
something
that
that
signals
signals
that
that
thethe
actual
actual
threat
threat
is is
impending,”
impending,”
says
says
Marsh.
Marsh.
This
This
dichotomy
dichotomy
between
between
our
our
innate
innate
responses
responses
and
and
our
our
personal
personal
ones,
ones,
could
could
explain
explain
some
some
of of
thethe
differences
differences
of of
opinion
opinion
that
that
scientists
scientists
have
have
had
had
in in
terms
terms
of of
thethe
fear
fear
response.
response.
InIn
thethe
book
book
Rewire
Rewire
Your
Your
, trained
, trained
Anxious
Anxious
Brain
Brain
behavioural
behavioural
scientist
scientist
Catherine
Catherine
Pittman
Pittman
and
and
coauthor
coauthor
Elizabeth
Elizabeth
Karle
Karle
look
look
at at
thethe
way
way
our
our
bodies
bodies
handle
handle
fearful
fearful
stimuli.
stimuli.
They
They
first
first
differentiate
differentiate
between
between
fear,
fear,
and
and
anxiety.
anxiety.
“Anxiety
“Anxiety
is aiscomplex
a complex
emotional
emotional
response
response
that’s
that’s
similar
similar
toto
fear,”
fear,”
they
they
note.
note.

“Fear
“Fear
is typically
is typically
associated
associated
with
with
a clear,
a clear,
present
present
and
and
identifiable
identifiable
threat,
threat,
whereas
whereas
anxiety
anxiety
occurs
occurs
in in
thethe
absence
absence
of of
immediate
immediate
peril.”
peril.”
AsAs
they
they
note,
note,
problems
problems
arise
arise
when
when
anxiety
anxiety
“interferes
“interferes
with
with
important
important
aspects
aspects
of of
our
our
lives.”
lives.”
The
The
results,
results,
they
they
note,
note,
include
include
nervous
nervous
rituals,
rituals,
frequent
frequent
nightmares,
nightmares,
and
and
over-stated
over-stated
approximations
approximations
of of
thethe
threat
threat
that
that
say,
say,
spiders,
spiders,
oror
barking
barking
dogs,
dogs,
may
may
have
have
onon
our
our
livelihoods.
livelihoods.
Luckily,
Luckily,
science
science
has
has
been
been
busy
busy
looking
looking
into
into
anxiety
anxiety
asas
well.
well.
“In“In
thethe
past
past
two
two
decades,
decades,
research
research
onon
thethe
neurological
neurological
underpinnings
underpinnings
of of
anxiety
anxiety
has
has
been
been
conducted
conducted
around
around
thethe
world,”
world,”
they
they
note.
note.

YOU
YOUMUST
MUST
EXPOSE
EXPOSE
YOURSELF
YOURSELF
TO
TOFEARED
FEARED
SITUATIONS
SITUATIONS
AND
ANDALLOW
ALLOW
YOURSELF
YOURSELFTO
TO
EXPERIENCE
EXPERIENCE
ANXIETY
ANXIETYIFIF
YOU
YOUWANT
WANTTO
TO
CHANGE
CHANGEYOUR
YOUR
RESPONSE
RESPONSE
“This
“This
research
research
has
has
revealed
revealed
something
something
very
very
important:
important:
two
two
fairly
fairly
separate
separate
pathways
pathways
in in
thethe
brain
brain
can
can
create
create
anxiety.
anxiety.
One
One
path
path
begins
begins
in in
thethe
celebral
celebral
cortex,”
cortex,”
thethe
authors
authors
note.
note.
“The
“The
other
other
travels
travels
more
more
directly
directly
through
through
thethe
amygdalas.”
amygdalas.”
Put
Put
simply,
simply,
one
one
produces
produces
thinking,
thinking,
thethe
latter
latter
controls
controls
our
our
emotional
emotional
response.
response.
“The
“The
amygdala’s
amygdala’s
emotional
emotional
processing
processing
has
has
profound
profound
effects
effects
onon
our
our
behaviour,”
behaviour,”
thethe
authors
authors
note.
note.

THE
THE
FEARLESS
FEARLESS
WOMAN
WOMAN

ToTo
explore
explore
how
how
it works,
it works,
let’s
let’s
look
look
at at
a case
a case
where
where
thethe
amygdala
amygdala
doesn’t
doesn’t
work.
work.
InIn
53 53
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

WE ARE THE
HEALTHIEST,
WEALTHIEST,
AND LONGESTLIVED PEOPLE
IN HISTORY.
AND WE ARE
INCREASINGLY
AFRAID - ONE
OF THE GREAT
PARADOXES
54
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

a report in Current Biology,
scientist Justin Feinstein and
partners conducted research
into a rare human patient,
who they called SM. Suffering
from “focal bilateral amygdala
lesions”, the scientists
exposed her to live snakes and
spiders, took her on a tour of
a haunted house, and showed
her emotionally evocative
films. “On no occasion did SM
exhibit fear, and she never
endorsed feeling more
than minimal levels of

fear,” they note. “Likewise,
across a battery of selfreport questionnaires, three
months of real-life experience
sampling, and a life history
replete with traumatic events,
SM repeatedly demonstrated
an absence of overt fear
manifestations and an overall
impoverished experience of
fear.”Intriguingly, the scientists
found SM “entirely capable” of
triggering and feeling emotions
other than fear. Nor did a lack of
fear reaction mean disinterest

in the tests. In fact, quite
the opposite.
“SM’s reaction to fearinducing stimuli was not
characterized by a loss of
responsiveness, but rather
manifested as a heightened
arousal and interest in the
face of a near-complete lack
of avoidance and caution,”
they write. “Moreover,
SM’s lack of avoidance
was often accompanied by
an excess of exploratory
approach behaviour that she

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

INTO THE MIND

verbally described as an
overwhelming feeling
of ‘’curiosity’.”
Which raises an
interesting question. If a
person incapable of a fear
response can instead react to
fear-inducing situations with
excitement, might this be
something that those wracked
with anxiety might train
themselves to do too?

REWIRED REACTIONS

As recently as December 2014,
Scientific American detailed the
work of researchers at Harvard
University, who discovered
that the differences in our
response between anxiety and
excitement, may indeed be less
than we had imagined.
As Tori Rodriguez writes, a
thumping heart, shortness of
breath and racing mind, could
be interpreted as either anxiety
or excitement, depending on
the choice of the subject.

FEAR IS A
MIXTURE OF
INNATE AND
LEARNED
RESPONSE.
WHEN YOU
LEARN
TO FEAR
SOMETHING,
YOU ARE
IN FACT
LEARNING
TO FEAR THE
TRIGGER OF
THE ACTUAL
THREAT
According to a report in
the Journal of Experimental
Psychology from June 2014,
the experiments saw subject
given differing instructions:
“Some participants were told
to either try to calm down or
try to get excited before the
task; others were given no such
56
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

instructions.” The responses
differed with the instructions.
“People who viewed their
anxious arousal as excitement
not only reported feeling more
excited, they also performed
better on all tasks than the
other participants.”
The researchers noted that
a positive level of agitation
may be more effective than
calmness. “Getting excited
about how things can go
well will give you confidence
and energy and increase the
likelihood that the positive
outcomes you imagine will
actually happen,” noted the
report’s author, assistant
professor Alison Wood Brooks
of Harvard Business School
This sort of research is
leading scientists to suggest
that where our brains have
developed a learned fear or
anxiety response to a certain
stimulus, that this response can
in turn be deprogrammed too.
Pittman and Karle dedicate
their practical guidebook,
Rewire Your Anxious Brain,
to all those who “suffer from
anxiety or panic, and who need
daily courage to find their way
through the experience.”
As the authors explore,
where a learned fear response
is impinging on a person’s life,
one option to alleviate this is
through constant controlled
exposure to this trigger, to
in effect “re-engineer” your
response. As one can imagine
when facing your deepest fears,
the process is a painful one.
“Exposure is a “no pain, no
gain situation,” the authors
note. “You must expose yourself to feared situations and
allow yourself to experience
anxiety if you want to change
your response.”
Unfortunately, Pittman
and Karle stress, the best
way to treat the condition, is
to provoke it. “The optimal
condition for learning to take
place in the amygdala is when
the neurons are excited, just
as the optimal condition for

building muscle mass in the
body is when the muscle fibres
are fatigued. In a parallel way,
as you do more repetitions,
you grow stronger. You can
think of exposure as a way of
providing exercises that will
strengthen the amygdala.”
As they note, while painful
to those suffering from this
overt fear response, the
process will be an adaptive
one. “Your amygdala will
adapt if you remain in the
situation.” They suggest that
progress will come when
you’re practicing exposure
exercises, “and you feel your
anxiety decrease.”
The authors point to
various lifestyle factors that
can have an effect on our fear
reaction. One important one
is sleep. “To calm anxiety, you
need to resist influences that
interfere with sleep. However,

anxiety itself often impairs
people’s ability to sleep.”
Equally important are
exercise and relaxation.
“Exercise doesn’t just reduce
anxiety in the moment of
for a few hours afterwards.
Research shows that following
a regular exercise programme
for at least ten weeks can
reduce people’s general level
of anxiety.”
Equally, they note that
learning and diligently
practicing muscle relaxation
techniques, will shorten panic
attacks and make them less
likely — good news for those
late night moments when
our mind turns to a litany of
questions. Instead of being
weighed down by our fears,
with a little training and some
better habits, hopefully we can
all question reality a little less,
and rest easier.

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

INTO THE MIND

58
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEDICINE

PHOTO CORBIS

ARE ALTERNATE METHODS OF HEALING
REALLY EFFECTIVE? ARE THEY THE
PANACEA FOR THE MIND AND BODY?
CAIN NUNNS GOES IN SEARCH
OF SOME ANSWERS

59
APRIL 2015

A PATIENT UNDERGOES CUPPING
TREATMENT AT A CHINESE
MEDICINE CLINIC IN CHONGQING
MUNICIPALITY, CHINA. CUPPING
IS AN ALTERNATIVE FORM OF PAIN
THERAPY THAT HAS BEEN PART
OF CHINESE MEDICINE FOR OVER
2,500 YEARS

PHOTOS GETTY IMAGES

hung Hsu-liung was tired,
frustrated and desperate.
The chronic back pain had
been migrating to the outer
extremities of his body for
months, sending piercing
bolts of pain down his legs
like freight trains on fire.
Sometimes it was so bad,
he couldn’t sit in a chair for
more than 10 minutes or
walk the 400-metre journey
to pick up his three-year-old
daughter form daycare. At
others, the spasms would
make his hand shake so badly
that he couldn’t hold a spoon,
let alone work the mouse or
keyboards needed for his job
as a software engineer.
Chung says the pain was
bad enough. But the bouts
of ensuing depression were
worse. “I had to quit my job
because even on the days I
was pain-free, I couldn’t focus
because I kept thinking about
when it would reappear. It was
60
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

like a cartoon where a piano
hangs over the bad guy’s head.
Just waiting for that frayed
rope to snap,” he recalls.
“My wife had to go back
to work, while I stayed at
home like a loser,” says the
38-year-old Taipei native,
before adding: “Thank God
for this place,” pointing to a
crammed waiting room in a
grey utilitarian pillbox in a
hardscrabble eastern suburb
of Taiwan’s capital.
“After rounds and
rounds of tests, doctors kept
recommending surgery, which
was expensive and would
have kept me bedridden
for months. But I started

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

feeling
feeling
better
better
after
after
only
only
a few
a few
treatments
treatments
here,”
here,”
hehe
shares.
shares.
This
This
“place”
“place”
hehe
refers
refers
toto
is is
DrDr
Wang
Wang
Hsien-yu’s
Hsien-yu’s
acupuncture
acupuncture
clinic.
clinic.
Chung
Chung
says
says
this
this
is is
the
the
reason
reason
hehe
is is
pain-free
pain-free
for
for
the
the
first
first
time
time
inin
many
many
years.
years.
ItIt
is is
here
here
that
that
joint
joint
inflammation,
inflammation,
dislocation
dislocation
ofof
joints
joints
and
and
general
general
pain
pain
relief
relief
is is
treated
treated
through
through
acupuncture.
acupuncture.

GENERATIONAL
GENERATIONALLEGACY
LEGACY

Wang,
Wang,
a handsome
a handsome
man
man
ofof
4646
years,
years,
wears
wears
a long
a long
chartreuse
chartreuse
robe,
robe,
with
with
a wooden
a wooden
prayer
prayer
bracelet
bracelet
onon
his
his
wrist.
wrist.
His
His
father
father
and
and
his
his
father’s
father’s
father
father
were
were
also
also
Chinese
Chinese
medicine
medicine
doctors.
doctors.
His
His
grandfather,
grandfather,
who
who
was
was
born
born
inin
Ningbo,
Ningbo,
knew
knew
little
little
ofof
his
his
adopted
adopted
country
country
before
before
fleeing
fleeing
the
the
carnage
carnage
ofof
the
the
China
China
Civil
Civil
War
War
with
with
his
his
young
young
family
family
inin
the
the
late
late
1940s.
1940s.
“He
“He
had
had
nothing
nothing
when
when
hehe
arrived
arrived
——
just
just
his
his
knowledge
knowledge
and
and
a desire
a desire
toto
help.
help.
But
But
given
given
the
the
state
state
ofof
Taipei
Taipei
back
back
then,
then,
and
and
itsits
lack
lack
ofof
modern
modern
doctors,
doctors,
hehe
was
was
quickly
quickly
inin
high
high
demand,”
demand,”
says
says
Wang.
Wang.
This
This
leaf-shaped
leaf-shaped
island
island
some
some
180
180
kilometres
kilometres
offoff
China’s
China’s
southern
southern
coast
coast
is is
home
home
toto
one
one
ofof
Asia’s
Asia’s
most
most
modern
modern
health
health
care
care
systems
systems
——
and
and
one
one
that
that
is is
quickly
quickly
6161
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

gaining traction as a medical
tourism hotspot. Its universal
health care coverage and
medical insurance scheme is
one of the most
comprehensive globally.
Researchers seamlessly
merge high-tech industries
at the cutting-edge of
biotech, software, and
wearable devices.

PHOTO CORBIS

A BOWL OF
AROMATIC
CURRY THAT
CONTAINS
TURMERIC HAS
THE BLOOD
THINNING
EFFECTS OF
ASPIRIN. PLUS,
CURCUMIN,
AN ELEMENT
IN TURMERIC
CAN ALSO
PREVENT
CHOLESTEROL
DEPOSITS
“We cover outpatient
services for Chinese
Medicine, herbal medicine,
massage and acupuncture.
Most of which are run through
clinics although hospitals
also house traditional
medicine units. In 2013, the
government spent about US$1
billion on health insurance,
but only about four percent of

that was spent on traditional
medicines,” says May Wang,
of the Taiwan National Health
Insurance Agency.
But despite all the fancy
high-tech bells and whistles, it
is a country that still worships
at the altar of tradition. About
25 percent of Taiwanese
people use traditional
Chinese medicine (TCM)
as primary health care. The
majority of which are women
aged between 20 to 50 years
of age. That number is only
lower because infants and
small children do not come
under that remit, says Wang.
Taiwan is home to 42,000
“modern” doctors and 6,000
Chinese medicine physicians.
About 70 percent of western
doctors work in hospitals,
while 90 percent of traditional
practitioners ply their trade
at private clinics. However,
Wang says that two thirds
of western doctors provide
only about one third of the
country’s total outpatient
visits. And that's an important
consideration for a country
with an aging population
straining under the weight of
spiraling health care costs.
“We reimburse patients
who choose to use Chinese
medicines as long as there is
empirical evidence that they
work,” says the 48-year-old
Taipei native. The 19-year
veteran of the insurance
agency says one funded
pilot project that “works” is
a 10-year effort for outcare

A WORKER PREPARES
HERBS AT A TONG REN TANG
TRADITIONAL CHINESE
MEDICINE PHARMACY IN
BEIJING, CHINA

EXPANDING THE MEDICINE CABINET

A THINNING CURRY?
THE BLOOD THINNING EFFECTS OF ASPIRIN CAN PREVENT BLOOD CLOTS
FROM FORMING, AND THUS STAVE OFF HEART DISEASE. SURPRISINGLY,
YOU CAN ALSO ENJOY THIS BENEFIT OVER A BOWL OF AROMATIC CURRY
CONTAINING TURMERIC, THE ORANGE-YELLOW SPICE. ASIDE FROM WORKING
THE WAY ASPIRIN DOES, CURCUMIN, THE SUBSTANCE IN TURMERIC, CAN
ALSO PREVENT CHOLESTEROL DEPOSITS

62
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

HERBS
HERBS
TO
TOTHE
THERESCUE
RESCUE
InIn2009,
2009,Chinese
Chinesemedical
medical
specialists
specialistsannounced
announcedthat
thatthey
they
had
haddeveloped
developeda aChinese
Chineseherbal
herbal
medication
medicationtototreat
treatthe
theA/H1N1
A/H1N1flu.
flu.
Seven
Sevenmonths
monthsofofscientific
scientificand
andclinical
clinical
studies
studiesshowed
showedthat
thatthe
theremedy,
remedy,called
called
Jin
JinHua
HuaQing
QingGan
GanFang,
Fang,was
waseffective
effectiveinin
treating
treatingA/H1N1
A/H1N1flu
flupatients,
patients,according
according
totoWang
WangChen,
Chen,President
PresidentofofBeijing's
Beijing's
Chaoyang
ChaoyangHospital.
Hospital.The
Themedication
medication
reportedly
reportedlyshortened
shortenedpatients
patients
fever
feverperiod
periodand
andimproved
improvedtheir
their
respiratory
respiratorysystems
systemswith
withno
no
negative
negativeeffects.
effects.ItItalso
alsocost
cost
about
abouta aquarter
quarterofofthe
the
cost
costofofTamiflu.
Tamiflu.

patients
patients
who
who
underwent
underwent
brain
brain
surgery,
surgery,
tumour
tumour
removals,
removals,
chemotherapy
chemotherapy
oror
radiation
radiation
therapy.
therapy.
Doctors
Doctors
use
use
Chinese
Chinese
medicines
medicines
inin
combination
combination
with
with
modern
modern
pharmaceuticals
pharmaceuticals
inin
3232
hospitals
hospitals
that
that
provide
provide
post
post
care
care
services
services
toto
about
about
2,600
2,600
people.
people.
The
The
project
project
has
has
kept
kept
overall
overall
costs
costs
down
down
while
while
stunting
stunting
the
the
frequency
frequency
ofof
readmissions.
readmissions.
But
But
it’sit’s
not
not
just
just
traditional
traditional
medicine
medicine
that
that
is is
onon
the
the
rise.
rise.
Globally,
Globally,
patients
patients
and
and
health
health
care
care
providers
providers
alike
alike
are
are
demanding
demanding
that
that
health
health
care
care
services
services
bebe
revitalized,
revitalized,
with
with
a stronger
a stronger
emphasis
emphasis
onon
individualized,
individualized,
personpersoncentered
centered
care,
care,
and
and
a broad
a broad
setset
ofof
health
health
care
care
practices
practices
that
that
are
are
not
not
fully
fully
integrated
integrated
into
into
the
the
dominant
dominant
health
health
care
care
system.
system.
According
According
toto
the
the
World
World
Health
Health
Organisation
Organisation
(WHO),
(WHO),
there
there
were
were
2525
member
member
states
states
that
that
had
had
TM
TM
policies
policies
inin
1999.
1999.
That
That
figure
figure
ballooned
ballooned
toto
6969
byby
2012.
2012.
Policies
Policies
forfor
regulating
regulating
herbal
herbal
medicines
medicines
grew
grew
from
from
6565
inin
1999
1999
toto
119,
119,
and
and
the
the
number
number
ofof
national
national
research
research
institutes
institutes
surged
surged
from
from
1919
toto
73.73.
Today,
Today,
member
member
states
states
with
with
highhighlevel
level
traditional
traditional
medicine
medicine
education
education
programmes
programmes
including
including
Bachelor,
Bachelor,
Master
Master
and
and
Doctoral
Doctoral
degrees
degrees
atat
university
university
level
level
has
has
increased
increased
from
from
a handful
a handful
toto
39.39.

want,
want,
which
which
puts
puts
them
them
inin
the
the
driver’s
driver’s
seat
seat
and
and
affords
affords
them
them
a fair
a fair
amount
amount
ofof
control
control
over
over
their
their
treatments
treatments
and
and
what
what
they
they
ingest.
ingest.
It’s
It’s
the
the
holistic
holistic
preemptive
preemptive
nature
nature
ofof
traditional
traditional
medicines,
medicines,
sans
sans
invasive
invasive
surgeries,
surgeries,
anaesthesia,
anaesthesia,
and
and
growing
growing
concerns
concerns
about
about
a reliance
a reliance
onon
overly
overly
medicated
medicated
patients,
patients,
that
that
has
has
driven
driven
TCM
TCM
use
use
toto
new
new
heights.
heights.
Margaret
Margaret
Chan,
Chan,
DirectorDirectorGeneral
General
ofof
WHO,
WHO,
said
said
recently:
recently:
“The
“The
two
two
systems
systems
ofof
traditional
traditional
and
and
western
western
medicine
medicine
need
need
not
not
clash.
clash.
Within
Within
the
the
context
context
ofof
primary
primary
health
health
care,
care,
they
they
can
can
blend
blend
together
together
inin
a beneficial
a beneficial
harmony,
harmony,
using
using
the
the
best
best
features
features
ofof
each
each
system,
system,
and
and
compensating
compensating
for
for
certain
certain
weakness
weakness
inin
each.
each.
This
This
is is
not
not
something
something
that
that
will
will
happen
happen
allall
byby
itself.
itself.
Deliberate
Deliberate
policy
policy
decisions
decisions
have
have
toto
bebe
made.
made.
But
But
it it
can
can
bebe
done.”
done.”
AsAs
such,
such,
the
the
WHO
WHO
Traditional
Traditional
Medicine
Medicine
Strategy
Strategy
2014
2014
toto
2023
2023
works
works
toto
support
support
the
the
contribution
contribution
ofof
complementary
complementary
health
health
care,
care,
wellness
wellness
and
and
people-centered
people-centered
health
health
care
care
and
and
toto
promote
promote
itsits
safe
safe
and
and
effective
effective
use
use
through
through
the
the
regu-lation
regu-lation
ofof
products,
products,
practices
practices
and
and
practitioners.
practitioners.
The
The
Geneva-based
Geneva-based
health
health
body
body
hopes
hopes
that
that
countries
countries
HOLISTIC
HOLISTICBENEFITS
BENEFITS
will
will
build
build
knowledge
knowledge
bases,
bases,
Wang
Wang
says
says
that
that
choice
choice
is is
aa
strengthen
strengthen
safety,
safety,
quality
quality
premium.
premium.
Patients
Patients
can
can
choose
choose and
and
effectiveness
effectiveness
through
through
what
what
sort
sort
ofof
treatments
treatments
they
they regulation.
regulation.

WAKE
WAKEME
MEUP
UP
CHRONIC
CHRONIC
FATIGUE
FATIGUE
SYNDROME
SYNDROME
DOESN’T
DOESN’T
JUST
JUST
GOGO
AWAY
AWAY
AFTER
AFTER
A GOOD
A GOOD
SLEEP
SLEEP
OROR
SOME
SOME
MEDS.
MEDS.
TREATMENT
TREATMENT
IS IS
CURRENTLY
CURRENTLY
LIMITED
LIMITED
TOTO
MANAGING
MANAGING
SYMPTOMS.
SYMPTOMS.
INSTEAD,
INSTEAD,
THE
THE
SLEEPLESS
SLEEPLESS
AND
AND
TIRED
TIRED
MAY
MAY
WANT
WANT
TOTO
TRY
TRY
CORDYCEPS,
CORDYCEPS,
A HERB
A HERB
WIDELY
WIDELY
USED
USED
BYBY
CHINESE
CHINESE
ATHLETES
ATHLETES
FOR
FOR
A MUCH
A MUCH
NEEDED
NEEDED
ENERGY
ENERGY
BOOST.
BOOST.
BUT
BUT
BEBE
BOLD:
BOLD:
CORDYCEPS
CORDYCEPS
ACTUALLY
ACTUALLY
COMPRISES
COMPRISES
AA
PARASITIC
PARASITIC
FUNGUS
FUNGUS
ASAS
WELL
WELL
ASAS
ITSITS
DEAD
DEAD
CATERPILLAR
CATERPILLAR
HOST
HOST

6363
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

CHINESE NATIONAL
WEI SHENGCHU
INSERTS NEEDLES
INTO HIS FOREHEAD
DURING A SELFACUPUNCTURE
PERFORMANCE
IN CHONGQING
MUNICIPALITY, CHINA
IN 2007. WEI INSERTED
1,200 NEEDLES
INTO HIS SCALP
DURING THE SHOW.
ACCORDING TO LOCAL
MEDIA, THE 60-YEAROLD ACUPUNCTURIST
IS A COSMETIC
DOCTOR WHO HOLDS
THE GUINNESS WORLD
RECORD FOR SELFACUPUNCTURING 1,790
NEEDLES IN HIS FACE

64
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

65 65
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

IN A TRADITIONAL
MEDICINE CLINIC IN
KERALA, INDIA, A PATIENT
SITS IN A WOODEN BOX IN
WHICH STEAM CIRCULATES
LACED WITH PLANTS SUCH
AS MAUVE. THE HEAT
PENETRATES THE DEEP
TISSUES OF THE BODY
66
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEDICINE

The idea is that universal
health coverage will be
promoted by integrating
traditional services into
national health systems.
“The affordability of most
traditional medicines makes
them all the more attractive
at a time of soaring health
care costs, says Sangyoung
Anh, Technical Officer of the
WHO’s Essential Medicines
and Health Technology
Unit. “We are experiencing
increased levels of noncommunicable diseases and
aging populations, which
demand individualized,
person-centered care. It is
now becoming increasingly
important to have access not
only to curative care but also
preventive, rehabilitative,
palliative health services.”

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

TRADITIONAL
MEDICINE HAS
A SIGNIFICANT
IMPACT ON
THE GLOBAL
POPULATION.
IF INCLUDED,
THEY CAN
HELP IN
WESTERN
MEDICAL
SYSTEMS AND
PROCESSES
Anh says the global
burden of chronic diseases
is the most urgent reason for
developing and strengthening
collaboration between
conventional and traditional
medicine health sectors, and
points to studies that indicate
that patients whose general
practitioner has additional
complementary and
alternative medicine training
have lower health care cost
and mortality rates than those
who do not.
In one study of the
Royal London Hospital for

Integrated Medicine, patients
reported using the unit
because other treatments
failed, or because they have
experienced adverse effects
with other treatments. The
failure of conventional
medicine treatments and a
desire for a healthy lifestyle
were the main motives for
using traditional medicines.

PINS AND NEEDLES
WE TAKE A CLOSER LOOK AT ACCUPUNTURE, ONE OF
THE SEVERAL ANCIENT CHINESE MEDICAL PROCEDURES
TO HAVE GONE GLOBAL

HEALTH CARE

Gujarat Ayurveda University
in India’s northwest is an
Ayurveda medical school and
WHO collaborative centre
that is wholly state-run and
funded. It provides five-anda-half year degree courses
for budding practitioners
of Ayurveda, a system of
Hindu traditional medicine
of Vedic tradition native to
the Indian subcontinent.
Established in 1967, it is the
first university exclusively
devoted to Ayurvedic
studies and research, and
has built a reputation for
the management of chronic
and incurable diseases,
along with the treatment
of modern ailments such as
hypertension.
“Ayurveda is part and
parcel of India’s overarching
health care system,” says MS
Baghel, Director of Institute
for Post Graduate Teaching
and Research in Ayurveda
at the university. “Often it’s
the primary and secondary
options in rural areas.”
The westernisation of
India has had dramatic effects
on health in rural societies,
but modern medicine
doesn't have an effective
management here because
there are too few hospitals.
“It’s about the prevention of
non-communicable diseases
by modifying lifestyles,” says
Baghel. “Traditional medicine
has always had a significant
impact on local populations
globally. We should seriously
examine how they can help
in western medical systems.

The above acupuncturist’s model of the human body is as
complex as it looks. Acupuncuture is the Chinese practice of
pricking the skin with a needle to relieve pain and channel
qi, or life force energy. And as you might expect, you don’t
just ram that baby in anywhere. There are specific points,
or meridians, of the body where needles should be forced
to channel or release qi to good effect. The number of those
meridians varies from a few hundred to 2,000. As the authors
of Acupuncture: An Anatomical Approach note, “The most
commonly mentioned acupoint total in acupuncture books
is 361 points. This is obviously an arbitrary number. In our
view, every few square millimetres of body surface can be a
potential acupoint.”

67
APRIL 2015

AYURVEDA IS
A MAJOR PART
OF INDIA’S
OVERARCHING
HEALTH CARE
SYSTEM.
OFTEN, IT IS
THE ONLY
OPTION IN THE
COUNTRY’S
RURAL AREAS
Acupuncture is one such
example. According to WHO,
80 percent of 129 countries
polled now recognize its
use as a viable form of
treatment. Meanwhile visits
to complementary health
professionals in Australia,
grew by over 30 percent in the

decade from 1995 to 2005.
In China, the number of
TCM visits was 907 million
in 2009, accounting for
18 percent of all surveyed
institutions. About 90
percent of hospitals include
a traditional medicine
department and provide
services for both outpatients
and inpatients, which are
governed by the same
legislation as conventional
medical institutions.
In Japan, 84 percent of
Japanese physicians use
the traditional therapeutic
system kampo, which is
derived from classical
Chinese medicine, daily.
While in the Republic of
Korea, annual expenditures
on traditional medicine were
US$4.4 billion in 2004, rising
to US$7.4 billion in 2009; and
in 2011, patient admissions to
hospitals for bone, joint and
muscle disorders, dyspepsia,
osteoarthritis and facial nerve
disorders surged.
In Lao People's Democratic
Republic in Southeast Asia, 80
percent of the population lives
in rural villages. Each one is
home to one or two traditional
health practitioners, providing
the backbone of the country’s
health care.
Of course, there are still
problems to overcome. Anh
says that use of poor quality,
adulterated or counterfeit
products, unqualified
practitioners, misdiagnosis,
delayed diagnosis, or failure
to use effective conventional

PHOTOS JOHN STANMEYER/VII/CLICK PHOTOS

Bacteria that are now
drug resistant are pressing
concerns. We really do need
greater inclusion.”
Perhaps that inclusion is
underway. Traditional healing
such as Ayurveda, Chinese
medicine, Unani (a traditional
system of healing and health
maintenance observed in
South Asia) acupuncture,
massage therapies and Reiki
(a hands-on healing technique
with Japanese origins)
are increasingly popular
worldwide. Over 100 million
Europeans are believers, with
one fifth regularly using
TMs, and the same number
preferring health care that
includes them.

EXPANDING THE MEDICINE CABINET

THE LOVE DRUG

CHUCHUHUASI , AN AMAZONIAN LOVE POTION, IS OBTAINED FROM
THE REDDISH BARK OF THE MAYTENUS KROKOVII TREE. INSTEAD
OF GIVING THE GIRLS A LIBIDO BOOST AS THE WESTERN SPANISH
FLY DOES, CHUCHUHUASI IS REPORTED TO BE EXCELLENT FOR
SUSTAINING SEXUAL DESIRE, VIRILITY AND FUNCTION

68
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

DRDR
CHIULA
CHIULA
USES
USES
A TOY
A TOY
HEHE
CALLS
CALLS
HIS
HIS
"X-RAY
"X-RAY
GLASS"
GLASS"
ONON
A MALARIA
A MALARIA
PATIENT
PATIENT
IN IN
THE
THE
SOWETO
SOWETO
MARKET
MARKET
AREA
AREA
OFOF
LUSAKA,
LUSAKA,
ZAMBIA.
ZAMBIA.
WIDESPREAD
WIDESPREAD
POVERTY
POVERTY
IN IN
ZAMBIA
ZAMBIA
WITH
WITH
ANAN
UNEMPLOYMENT
UNEMPLOYMENT
RATE
RATE
OFOF
7070
PERCENT
PERCENT
MEANS
MEANS
A MAJORITY
A MAJORITY
OFOF
THE
THE
POPULATION
POPULATION
CAN
CAN
ONLY
ONLY
AFFORD
AFFORD
TOTO
VISIT
VISIT
TRADITIONAL
TRADITIONAL
HEALERS
HEALERS

treatments
treatments
and
and
exposure
exposure
toto
misleading
misleading
oror
unreliable
unreliable
information
information
allall
need
need
toto
bebe
cleaned
cleaned
up.up.
Unlike
Unlike
modern
modern
drugs,
drugs,
the
the
quality
quality
of of
source
source
material
material
forfor
traditional
traditional
medicines
medicines
can
can
bebe
erratic.
erratic.
This
This
is compounded
is compounded
byby
other
other
inputs
inputs
such
such
asas
the
the
environment
environment
at at
source,
source,
harvesting
harvesting
techniques,
techniques,
transport
transport
and
and
storage.
storage.
“There
“There
areare
upup
toto
500
500
commonly
commonly
used
used
herbs
herbs
handed
handed
down
down
from
from
centuries.
centuries.
And
And
about
about
9090
percent
percent
of of
herbs
herbs
areare
imported
imported
from
from
China.
China.
WeWe
have
have
toto
ensure
ensure
that
that
they
they
dodo
not
not
contain
contain
dioxins,
dioxins,
heavy
heavy
metals
metals
oror
other
other
potentially
potentially
serious
serious
pollutants,”
pollutants,”
says
says
Huang
Huang
Yi-Tsau,
Yi-Tsau,
director
director
general
general
of of
thethe
department
department
of of
Chinese
Chinese
medicine
medicine
and
and
pharmacy
pharmacy
at at
Taiwan’s
Taiwan’s
Ministry
Ministry
of of
Health
Health
and
and
Welfare.
Welfare.
Prescribed
Prescribed
dosages
dosages
can
can
also
also
cause
cause
problems.
problems.
While
While
modern
modern
drug
drug
use
use
varies
varies
dependent
dependent
onon
the
the
age
age
and
and
weight
weight
of of
the
the
patient,
patient,
along
along
with
with
the
the
severity
severity
of of
disease,
disease,
traditional
traditional
medicine
medicine
doctors
doctors
prescribe
prescribe
bespoke
bespoke
medicines
medicines
after
after
a consultation
a consultation
based
based
onon
the
the
patient's
patient's
symptoms.
symptoms.
Another
Another
problem
problem
occurs
occurs
when
when
patients
patients
mix
mix
and
and
match
match
traditional
traditional
medicines
medicines
and
and
modern
modern
drugs.
drugs.
Huang
Huang
says
says
that
that
both
both
schools
schools
of of
medicine
medicine
need
need
toto
bebe
better
better
educated
educated
about
about
other
other
practices
practices
inin
order
order
toto
mitigate
mitigate
potentially
potentially
dangerous
dangerous
mix
mix
ups.
ups.
“When
“When

POOP
POOPAWAY
AWAYPAIN
PAIN

IN IN
PLACE
PLACE
OFOF
PANADOL
PANADOL
OROR
NUROFEN
NUROFEN
TOTO
RELIEVE
RELIEVE
MENSTRUAL
MENSTRUAL
CRAMPS
CRAMPS
ARE
ARE
METHODS
METHODS
IN IN
TRADITIONAL
TRADITIONAL
MEDICINE
MEDICINE
THAT
THAT
ARE
ARE
JUST
JUST
ASAS
EFFECTIVE,
EFFECTIVE,
ALTHOUGH
ALTHOUGH
HYGIENE
HYGIENE
ISN’T
ISN’T
QUITE
QUITE
PRIORITISED.
PRIORITISED.
ONE
ONE
METHOD
METHOD
REQUIRES
REQUIRES
INGESTING
INGESTING
THE
THE
FAECES
FAECES
OFOF
A FLYING
A FLYING
SQUIRREL
SQUIRREL
TOTO
"INVIGORATE"
"INVIGORATE"
BLOOD
BLOOD
TOTO
CREATE
CREATE
BETTER
BETTER
CIRCULATION,
CIRCULATION,
WHICH
WHICH
IN IN
TURN,
TURN,
PROVIDES
PROVIDES
YOU
YOU
WITH
WITH
ADDITIONAL
ADDITIONAL
PAIN
PAIN
RELIEF
RELIEF
ASAS
WELL.
WELL.
YUM?
YUM?

69 69
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

Taiwan was a Japanese
colony from 1895 to 1945,
they abolished Chinese
Medicine. There has been
close to a century where
the political and influential
elite derided it as backward
and out of touch with a
continent struggling with the
shackles of colonialism and
industrialisation,” he notes.
“Forty years ago, western
medicine doctors used to
tell their patients to never
return if they were also
using traditional treatments.
Doctors considered
themselves elite, and as
such they were excessively
paternalistic,” says the
director, who has also been
a medical doctor for over
30 years.

ACCORDING
TO THE WHO,
80% OF 129
COUNTRIES
POLLED NOW
RECOGNISE
ACUPUNCTURE
AS A VIABLE
FORM OF
TREATMENT
“In a hospital setting you
have increased dialogue
with other doctors and
the characteristic as a
holistic practice will not be
undermined. The impact of
traditional medicine would
be improved with more
practitioners in hospitals.
Modern doctors don’t have
courses in Chinese medicine.
There needs to be more.”
According to WHO, Africa
hosts a traditional healer to
every 500 residents, while
modern doctors only account
for each 40,000. For millions
of people in rural areas, native
healers therefore remain their
health providers.
Malaria is estimated to
kill about 900,000 people per
70
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

year, with the vast majority of
that number being children
in Africa. That number is
compounded by traditional
medicines and a cultural belief
that children with convulsions
were possessed by spirits and
would die if taken to hospital.
The devastating Ebola
outbreak in West Africa,
which according to the Atlantabased Centre for Disease
Control and Prevention, has
led to about 17,200 laboratory
confirmed cases and over
6,100 deaths in the hardest hit
countries of Guinea, Liberia
and Sierra Leone, as of early
December 2014.
Health workers warn that
figure is most likely much
higher, in part due to how
the belief in witchcraft is
hampering the fight because
the sick refused to seek
treatment — in the mistaken
belief that the virus, which
still has no cure, was the work
of sorcerers and the only
remedies to combat it were
held by witch doctors.
“Modern system doctors
benefit from research
conducted worldwide using
evidence based knowledge
standards,” says Huang. “The
comparative progress is like
we are riding bicycles and
the other guys are on highspeed trains.”
About 600 kilometres
north of Guinea’s coast sits
Gambia and its brutal dictator
President Yahya Jammeh,
who has presided over the
poverty-wracked nation since
engineering a coup in 1994.
Part of a long list of his bizarre
behaviour included a claim that
he had invented a herbal cure
made from banana peels for
AIDS, that requires sufferers
to stop taking drugs prescribed
to fight the virus. When the
UN representative to Gambia
complained that it was a
reckless gesture for a country
with one of the world’s highest
adult HIV/AIDS prevalence
rates, he had her expelled.

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

PHOTOS JOHN STANMEYER/VII/CLICK PHOTOS; DREAMSTIME

PHOTOS JOHN STANMEYER/VII/CLICK PHOTOS; DREAMSTIME

A DOLL
A DOLL
SITS
SITS
ON
ON
THE
THE
DESK
DESK
OFOF
DRDR
CHIULA,
CHIULA,
WHICH
WHICH
ISIS
USED
USED
TOTO
REMOVE
REMOVE
EVIL
EVIL
SPIRITS
SPIRITS
FROM
FROM
HOMES
HOMES

The
The
many
many
supporters
supporters
ofof
traditional
traditional
medicine
medicine
say
say
it it
could
could
bebe
even
even
more
more
effective
effective
if if
given
given
the
the
funding
funding
and
and
research
research
it it
needs.
needs.
“Traditional
“Traditional
medicine
medicine
offers
offers
substantial
substantial
benefits
benefits
for
for
primary
primary
care,
care,
but
but
research
research
is is
still
still
a fig
a fig
leaf
leaf
covering
covering
the
the
naked
naked
body
body
ofof
aa
statue.
statue.
SoSo
much
much
more
more
could
could
bebe
done.
done.
Drug
Drug
companies
companies
are
are
about
about
profit.
profit.
That's
That's
understandable,
understandable,
but
but
wewe
live
live
inin
anan
era
era
ofof
globalisation.
globalisation.
We
We
can
can
learn
learn
a lot
a lot
from
from
each
each
other,”
other,”
says
says
Huang.
Huang.Some,
Some,
however,
however,
have
have
heard
heard
Huang’s
Huang’s
clarion
clarion
call
call
for
for
action.
action.
Set
Set
upup
inin
1998,
1998,
the
the
Maryland-based
Maryland-based
National
National
Centre
Centre
for
for
Complementary
Complementary
and
and
Alternative
Alternative
Medicine
Medicine
(NCCAM)
(NCCAM)
is is
the
the
US
US
government’s
government’s
leading
leading
agency
agency
for
for
research
research
onon
complementary
complementary
medicine,
medicine,
which
which
works
works
toto
“define
“define
the
the
usefulness
usefulness
and
and
safety
safety
ofof
complementary
complementary
medicines
medicines
and
and
their
their
roles
roles
inin
improving
improving
health
health
care.”
care.”
The
The
centre
centre
had
had
a budget
a budget
ofof
about
about
US$128
US$128
million
million
last
last
year,
year,
and
and
provided
provided
funding
funding
forfor
studies
studies
such
such
asas
how
how
microbes
microbes
inin
the
the
human
human
body
body
make
make
antibiotics
antibiotics
that
that
could
could
fight
fight
infections,
infections,
where
where
researchers
researchers
unleashed
unleashed
anan
algorithm
algorithm
called
called
ClusterFinder,
ClusterFinder,
which
which
identified
identified
over
over
3,000
3,000
bacterial
bacterial
gene
gene
clusters
clusters
from
from
the
the
human
human
body.
body.
According
According
toto
researchers,
researchers,
the
the
clusters
clusters
signified
signified
DNA
DNA
blueprint
blueprint
toto
build
build
microbial
microbial
natural
natural
products,
products,
and
and
a roadmap
a roadmap
for
for
future
future
experimental
experimental
efforts
efforts
using
using
beneficial
beneficial
microbes
microbes
found
found
inin
viruses,
viruses,
fungi,
fungi,
and
and
bacteria.
bacteria.
Other
Other
endeavours
endeavours
included
included
a Stanford
a Stanford
University
University
study
study
onon
creating
creating
opioids
opioids
from
from
genetically
genetically
modified
modified
yeast
yeast
strains.
strains.
Another
Another
found
found
that
that
meditation
meditation
might
might
help
help
toto
reduce
reduce
suicidal
suicidal
thoughts
thoughts
ofof
depressed
depressed
teenagers.
teenagers.
The
The
isolation
isolation
ofof
morphine
morphine
from
from
poppy
poppy
inin
the
the
early
early
19th
19th

TRADITIONALLY
TRADITIONALLYSPEAKING…
SPEAKING…
FOR
FOR
AA
CIVILISATION
CIVILISATION
DATING
DATING
BACK
BACK
THOUSANDS
THOUSANDS
OF
OF
YEARS,
YEARS,
TRADITIONAL
TRADITIONAL
METHODS
METHODS
OF
OF
HEALING
HEALING
ARE
ARE
AA
GIVEN
GIVEN
ININ
INDIA.
INDIA.
EXPERTS
EXPERTS
SHARE
SHARE
WHAT
WHAT
KEEPS
KEEPS
THESE
THESE
LONG-HONOURED
LONG-HONOURED
MODES
MODES
OF
OF
TREATMENT
TREATMENT
POPULAR
POPULAR

Despite
Despite
the
the
advent
advent
ofof
modern
modern
medicine,
medicine,
the
the
age-old
age-old
modes
modes
ofof
treatment
treatment
continue
continue
toto
exist;
exist;
not
not
without
without
myths
myths
and
and
controversies
controversies
though.
though.
DrDr
NK
NK
Sharma,
Sharma,
Director
Director
and
and
Chairman
Chairman
ofof
the
the
Reiki
Reiki
Healing
Healing
Foundation,
Foundation,
New
New
Delhi,
Delhi,
says
says
that
that
alternative
alternative
medicine
medicine
dates
dates
back
back
thousands
thousands
ofof
years,
years,
and
and
some
some
have
have
even
even
been
been
mentioned
mentioned
inin
the
the
Vedas
Vedas
(ancient
(ancient
Indian
Indian
spiritual
spiritual
scriptures).
scriptures).
According
According
toto
him,
him,
the
the
basis
basis
ofof
Reiki
Reiki
lies
lies
inin
the
the
fact
fact
that
that
everything
everything
inin
the
the
universe
universe
isis
aa
form
form
ofof
constantly
constantly
vibrating
vibrating
energy.
energy.
“Reiki
“Reiki
works
works
onon
the
the
concept
concept
ofof
prana
prana
oror
‘life
‘life
force’.
force’.
Once
Once
you
you
have
have
mastered
mastered
your
your
own
own
vibration
vibration
through
through
meditation,
meditation,
channelising
channelising
it it
toto
aa
positive
positive
and
and
life-giving
life-giving
force,
force,
you
you
can
can
actually
actually
transfer
transfer
it it
toto
another
another
person
person
who
who
needs
needs
it,”
it,”
hehe
explains.
explains.
HeHe
adds
adds
that
that
the
the
positive
positive
energy
energy
ofof
Reiki
Reiki
can
can
help
help
ease
ease
physical
physical
oror
emotional
emotional
troubles.
troubles.
“So
“So
powerful
powerful
are
are
the
the
vibrations
vibrations
that
that
you
you
can
can
even
even
transfer
transfer
them
them
from
from
a distance
a distance
if if
you
you
simply
simply
think
think
about
about
the
the
person
person
and
and
meditate,”
meditate,”
hehe
says.
says.
Other
Other
alternative
alternative
healing
healing
methods
methods
that
that
have
have
garnered
garnered
much
much
attention
attention
are
are
the
the
ancient
ancient
Chinese
Chinese
techniques
techniques
ofof
acupuncture
acupuncture
and
and
acupressure.
acupressure.
These
These
involve
involve
the
the
stimulation
stimulation
ofof
certain
certain
points
points
onon
the
the
body
body
which
which
trigger
trigger
the
the
release
release
ofof
endorphins.
endorphins.
Stimulating
Stimulating
‘acupoints’
‘acupoints’
enhances
enhances
the
the
body’s
body’s
natural
natural
healing
healing
ability
ability
byby
harmonising
harmonising
the
the
QiQi
(energy,
(energy,
pronounced
pronounced
chee)
chee)
inin
the
the
body.
body.
“Traditional
“Traditional
Chinese
Chinese
medicine
medicine
considers
considers
lack
lack
ofof
balance
balance
within
within
the
the
biological
biological
system
system
asas
the
the
precursor
precursor
toto
allall
illness.
illness.
According
According
toto
the
the
theory
theory
ofof
acupuncture,
acupuncture,
the
the
body
body
has
has
energy
energy
flowing
flowing
through
through
it it
along
along
energy
energy
channels
channels
called
called
meridians,”
meridians,”
explains
explains
DrDr
Anjali
Anjali
Sharma
Sharma
ofof
Ethos
Ethos
Healthcare,
Healthcare,
New
New
Delhi.
Delhi.
She
She
says
says
that
that
for
for
good
good
health
health
it it
isis
important
important
toto
have
have
sufficient
sufficient
energy
energy
inin
the
the
right
right
proportion
proportion
and
and
inin
balance,
balance,
the
the
lack
lack
ofof
which
which
isis
the
the
reason
reason
for
for
disorders
disorders
and
and
diseases.
diseases.
“Acupuncture
“Acupuncture
triggers
triggers
a stronger
a stronger
stimulation
stimulation
than
than
acupressure.
acupressure.
Thin,
Thin,
hair-like
hair-like
needles
needles
are
are
inserted
inserted
toto
stimulate
stimulate
acupoints
acupoints
whereas
whereas
inin
acupressure
acupressure
a firm
a firm
pressure
pressure
isis
used
used
toto
massage
massage
the
the
acupoints
acupoints
toto
balance
balance
the
the
energy,”
energy,”
she
she
reveals.
reveals.
DrDr
Anjali
Anjali
states
states
that
that
the
the
basic
basic
concept
concept
has
has
remained
remained
the
the
same,
same,
but
but
the
the
way
way
it it
isis
practiced
practiced
has
has
evolved
evolved
over
over
time,
time,
allall
over
over
the
the
world.
world.
“For
“For
instance,
instance,
earlier,
earlier,
stone
stone
needles
needles
were
were
used.
used.
Later,
Later,
needles
needles
made
made
ofof
bone
bone
and
and
bamboos
bamboos
were
were
developed.
developed.
The
The
use
use
ofof
metal
metal
needles
needles
came
came
much
much
Contd
Contd
onon
pg73
pg73

7171
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2015

century marks the beginning
of drug discovery, and quite an
important one, that was based
on pure organic compounds.
The 2011 Lasker-DeBakey
Clinical Medical Research
Award was given to Chinese
scientist Tu Youyou, who
discovered artemisinin in the
search for a cure for malaria
extracted from Chinese
traditional herbs.
Archaeologists have
found that qinghao or sweet
wormwood had been used as
a traditional remedy in China
for over two thousand years.
Its anti-malarial principle
was finally isolated during the
Vietnam War in 1971, when
Chinese soldiers were being
battered by the disease.
Another Chinese scientist
to win international plaudits
is Zhu Chen of the Shanghai
Institute of Hematology, and
is the principal figure behind
the development of an acute
promyelocytic leukemia
cancer therapy made from
the arsenic of traditional
Chinese medicine. Back
in Taiwan, China Medical
University staffers ran a study
of electro-acupuncture to
alleviate post surgery pain.
They discovered that these
patients were less reliant on
highly addictive opiate-based
drugs such as morphine.
In the US, a Tufts
University study ran in the
New England Journal of
Medicine describing how a
clinical study of tai chi, the
Chinese martial art, being
used as physical therapy
recorded better results for
sufferers of Parkinson’s
than that of traditional
physiotherapy.
“New discoveries are
expected to continue,” says
Anh. “As of March 2014, there
are nine investigational new
drug applications submitted
to the US FDA based on
Chinese medicine formulae
for hepatitis, angina, colitis
and others.
72
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

RAW MATERIALS
The city of Yulin won the
title of "South China Medicine
Capital" last month, as reported
by the China Daily newspaper. Its
wholesale market sells about $1 billion
of TCM raw materials, including dried
seahorses and centipedes to seal penises.
Despite these vast sums, the country's
entire raw material market is poorly
regarded due to its lack of regulation and
inspection of its raw materials. In 2013, a
non-profit environmental organisation
found nearly half of the TCM it
sampled in Hong Kong and nine
main cities in the Chinese
mainland contained
pesticide residues.

MEDICINE
MEDICINE

TRADITIONALLY
TRADITIONALLYSPEAKING…
SPEAKING…

PHOTOS GETTY IMAGES; DREAMSTIME

RAW
RAW
MATERIALS
MATERIALS
(INCLUDING
(INCLUDING
ANTLER
ANTLER
AND
AND
TIGER
TIGER
BONE)
BONE)
FOR
FOR
TRADITIONAL
TRADITIONAL
MEDICINES
MEDICINES
ARE
ARE
SORTED
SORTED
BYBY
WORKERS
WORKERS
OFOF
A COUNTY-RUN
A COUNTY-RUN
DRUGS
DRUGS
COMPANY
COMPANY
ININ
HEILONGJIANG
HEILONGJIANG
PROVINCE,
PROVINCE,
CHINA.
CHINA.
TRADE
TRADE
ININ
THESE
THESE
MATERIALS
MATERIALS
THRIVES
THRIVES
ININ
THE
THE
FOREST
FOREST
REGIONS
REGIONS
OFOF
THE
THE
XIAO
XIAO
HINGGAN
HINGGAN
MOUNTAINS
MOUNTAINS

PHOTOS GETTY IMAGES; DREAMSTIME

later,”
later,”
she
she
says,
says,
adding
adding
that
that
the
the
science
science
has
has
kept
kept
pace
pace
with
with
modern
modern
medicine
medicine
and
and
technology;
technology;
computerised
computerised
acu-diagnosis
acu-diagnosis
available
available
today
today
isis
a significant
a significant
contribution
contribution
ofof
technology.
technology.
Medical
Medical
acupuncture
acupuncture
isis
a sub-stream
a sub-stream
which
which
combines
combines
modern
modern
medicine
medicine
and
and
acupuncture.
acupuncture.
“I “I
don’t
don’t
think
think
there
there
isis
any
any
conflict
conflict
between
between
modern-day
modern-day
medicine
medicine
and
and
this
this
science.
science.
There
There
are
are
two
two
major
major
reasons
reasons
more
more
people
people
including
including
youngsters
youngsters
are
are
turning
turning
towards
towards
the
the
traditional
traditional
healing
healing
methods
methods
– awareness
– awareness
and
and
the
the
limitation
limitation
ofof
modern
modern
medicine
medicine
solely
solely
helping
helping
people.
people.
The
The
WHO
WHO
acceptance
acceptance
has
has
added
added
toto
the
the
mass
mass
acceptance,”
acceptance,”
she
she
says.
says.
“The
“The
conflict
conflict
between
between
modern
modern
and
and
traditional
traditional
medicine
medicine
has
has
always
always
been
been
there.
there.
But,
But,
it it
cannot
cannot
bebe
denied
denied
that
that
the
the
number
number
ofof
believers
believers
and
and
beneficiaries
beneficiaries
have
have
increased
increased
over
over
the
the
years,”
years,”
says
says
Ayurveda
Ayurveda
consultant
consultant
DrDr
Sandeep
Sandeep
Madaan
Madaan
ofof
Aastha
Aastha
Ayurveda,
Ayurveda,
Delhi.
Delhi.
“There
“There
has
has
been
been
a worldwide
a worldwide
research
research
conducted
conducted
onon
herbs;
herbs;
modern
modern
pharmacology
pharmacology
theses
theses
are
are
also
also
full
full
ofof
research
research
onon
Ayurvedic
Ayurvedic
herbs.
herbs.
For
For
the
the
ancient
ancient
methods
methods
for
for
which
which
research
research
isis
not
not
available,
available,
wewe
are
are
following
following
the
the
literature
literature
and
and
getting
getting
results,”
results,”
hehe
shares.
shares.
Like
Like
many
many
other
other
conventional
conventional
healing
healing
experts,
experts,
DrDr
Madaan
Madaan
has
has
also
also
noticed
noticed
anan
increase
increase
inin
the
the
number
number
ofof
younger
younger
people
people
trusting
trusting
alternative
alternative
medicine.“The
medicine.“The
problems
problems
for
for
which
which
they
they
don’t
don’t
find
find
solutions
solutions
inin
contemporary
contemporary
medicine,
medicine,
they
they
turn
turn
toto
usus
and
and
positive
positive
results
results
make
make
them
them
believe
believe
inin
holistic
holistic
therapies,”
therapies,”
hehe
says.
says.
Stress
Stress
isis
the
the
reason
reason
behind
behind
most
most
physical
physical
and
and
emotional
emotional
disorders,
disorders,
says
says
DrDr
NK
NK
Sharma,
Sharma,
who
who
believes
believes
that
that
negative
negative
vibrations
vibrations
due
due
toto
stress
stress
lead
lead
toto
most
most
disorders
disorders
and
and
the
the
youth
youth
isis
now
now
more
more
aware
aware
ofof
this
this
fact.
fact.
“At
“At
our
our
centre,
centre,
8080
percent
percent
ofof
the
the
patients
patients
are
are
below
below
the
the
age
age
ofof
25.
25.
They
They
have
have
now
now
realised
realised
that
that
meditation
meditation
and
and
positive
positive
vibrations
vibrations
are
are
the
the
cure
cure
toto
everything,”
everything,”
hehe
shares.
shares.
These
These
healing
healing
experts
experts
believe
believe
that
that
it it
isis
unfortunate
unfortunate
that
that
even
even
inin
the
the
modern
modern
world
world
today,
today,
there
there
are
are
myths
myths
that
that
surround
surround
age-old
age-old
therapies.
therapies.
OnOn
the
the
one
one
hand,
hand,
these
these
are
are
seen
seen
asas
shams,
shams,
and
and
onon
the
the
other,
other,
some
some
people
people
have
have
unrealistic
unrealistic
expectations
expectations
from
from
them.
them.
“Awareness
“Awareness
isis
the
the
only
only
solution.
solution.
We
We
create
create
awareness
awareness
among
among
people,
people,
and
and
tell
tell
them
them
what
what
these
these
therapies
therapies
are,
are,
how
how
they
they
work,
work,
what
what
isis
the
the
scientific
scientific
explanation,
explanation,
inin
what
what
conditions
conditions
are
are
these
these
ofof
significant
significant
help,
help,
what
what
are
are
the
the
limitations,
limitations,
what
what
should
should
bebe
the
the
realistic
realistic
expectations,
expectations,
what
what
should
should
bebe
the
the
contraindications,
contraindications,
and
and
many
many
other
other
things
things
toto
consider.
consider.
Once
Once
people
people
understand
understand
allall
these,
these,
they
they
will
will
bebe
able
able
toto
get
get
the
the
best
best
from
from
traditional,
traditional,
alternative
alternative
methods
methods
ofof
healing,”
healing,”
states
states
DrDr
Anjali.
Anjali.
——
Adii
Adii
Dande
Dande

7373
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

74
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WEB
WEB
JUNKIES
JUNKIES

LOGGING
LOGGING

OFF

THE
THEWIRED
WIREDGENERATION
GENERATIONLIVES
LIVESININ
AAVIRTUAL
VIRTUALWORLD.
WORLD.HOOKED
HOOKEDTO
TO
THE
THEINTERNET,
INTERNET,GOING
GOINGOFFLINE
OFFLINE
ISISNOT
NOTAN
ANOPTION
OPTIONFOR
FORTHEM.
THEM.TO
TO
INVESTIGATE
INVESTIGATEMORE
MOREABOUT
ABOUTTHIS
THIS
NEW
NEWAND
ANDSEVERE
SEVEREADDICTION,
ADDICTION,
ADII
ADIIDANDE
DANDESTEPS
STEPSINTO
INTOUNIQUE
UNIQUE
DE-ADDICTION
DE-ADDICTIONCENTRES
CENTRES

75 75
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

CHILDREN AS YOUNG AS 10
CAN BE ROUTINELY SEEN
PLAYING COMPUTER GAMES
AT CYBER CAFES

76
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WEB
WEB
JUNKIES
JUNKIES

Riya
RiyaSharma
Sharmasneaks
sneaksinto
intoher
herparents’
parents’
bedroom
bedroomand
andlooks
looksfor
forher
hermother’s
mother’spurse.
purse.
Pulling
Pullingout
outa acouple
coupleofofhundreds,
hundreds,she
shetiptoes
tiptoes
out,
out,heading
headingstraight
straighttotothe
thecyber
cybercafé
café
next
nextdoor.
door.This
Thishas
hasbeen
beenthe
the15-year-old’s
15-year-old’s
routine
routinesince
sinceher
herparents
parentscut
cutoff
offthe
theInternet
Internet
connection
connectionatathome,
home,ahead
aheadofofher
herexams.
exams.They
They
tried
triedrationing
rationingher
herInternet
Internetand
andsmartphone
smartphone
use,
use,which
whichevidently
evidentlydid
didnot
notwork
workfor
forthe
the
teenager,
teenager,and
andininfact
factbackfired.
backfired.But
Butcan
canthis
thisbebe
dismissed
dismissedasasusual
usualteen
teenbehaviour?
behaviour?

PHOTO FERNANDO MORALES/PANOS PICTURES

PHOTO FERNANDO MORALES/PANOS PICTURES

H

information.
information.
It has
It has
progressed
progressed
clinical
clinical
psychiatrist
psychiatrist
andand
to atomore
a more
worrisome
worrisome
level
level
of of
psychoanalytical
psychoanalytical
therapist,
therapist,
addiction.
addiction.
TheThe
unfathomable
unfathomable
who
who
sees
sees
at least
at least
seven
seven
to to
pace
pace
at which
at which
Internet
Internet
usage
usage
is is
eight
eight
new
new
cases
cases
of Internet
of Internet
increasing
hashas
given
given
riserise
to the
to the
addiction
addiction
every
every
month,
month,
such
such increasing
need
need
forfor
something
something
that
that
waswas
desperate
desperate
cases
cases
aren’t
aren’t
tootoo
unheard
andand
unthought-of,
unthought-of,
rare.
rare.
“My
“My
very
very
recent
recent
case
case
waswas unheard
especially
in India,
in India,
until
until
justjust
that
that
of aofboy
a boy
addicted
addicted
to online
to online especially
a few
years
years
back
back
– Internet
– Internet
pornography.
pornography.
HeHe
waswas
aware
aware a few
de-addiction
centres.
centres.
Being
Being
of his
of his
addiction
addiction
andand
waswas
even
even de-addiction
a fairly
new
new
concept,
concept,
thethe
trying
trying
to quit
to quit
butbut
apparently
apparently a fairly
medical
fraternity
fraternity
is just
is just
about
about
nothing
nothing
worked.
worked.
HeHe
actually
actually medical
wrapping
wrapping
its its
head
head
around
around
used
used
to burn
to burn
himself
himself
with
with
a a
er parents’
er parents’
blaming
blaming
thethe
Internet
addiction.
addiction.
In fact,
In fact,
lighter
lighter
every
every
time
time
he he
logged
logged Internet
Internet
Internet
might
might
sound
sound
likelike
it isitso
is difficult
so difficult
to associate
to associate
on on
to atoporn
a porn
website,”
website,”
he he
an an
expected
expected
reaction
reaction
butbut
thethe reveals.
thethe
word
word
“addiction”
“addiction”
with
with
reveals.
HeHe
explains
explains
that
that
case
case
is graver
is graver
than
than
oneone
would
would though
something
something
as “harmless”
as “harmless”
as as
though
such
such
patients
patients
know
know
imagine.
imagine.
What
What
is generally
is generally
Internet
Internet
andand
technology
technology
where
where
thethe
problem
problem
lies,lies,
they
they thethe
termed
termed
as aas“bad
a “bad
habit”
habit”
that
most
most
health
health
professionals
professionals
feelfeel
they
they
areare
beyond
beyond
help.
help.
This
This that
hashas
turned
turned
into
into
a serious,
a serious,
notnot
refer
refer
to ittoas
itthat!
as that!
“It“It
drives
drives
them
them
to extreme
to extreme
guilt
guilt do do
epidemic-like
epidemic-like
situation.
situation.
might
seem
seem
funny
funny
butbut
wewe
andand
depression,
depression,
which
which
makes
makes might
Another
Another
incident,
incident,
thethe
often
callcall
it ‘Internet
it ‘Internet
overuse
overuse
them
them
take
take
such
such
drastic
drastic
steps.
steps. often
recent
recent
case
case
of aof19-year-old
a 19-year-old
disorder’
disorder’
because
because
associating
associating
INTERNET
INTERNET
DE-ADDICTION:
DE-ADDICTION: it with
Chinese
Chinese
boyboy
cutting
cutting
off off
hishis
it with
something
something
as negative
as negative
NEED
OFOF
THE
THE
HOUR
HOUR
hand
hand
at the
at the
wrist
wrist
in an
in an
attempt
attempt NEED
as addiction
as addiction
is still
is still
notnot
Clearly,
thethe
ever-increasing
ever-increasing accepted
to cure
to cure
hishis
Internet
Internet
addiction,
addiction, Clearly,
accepted
by many
by many
patients,”
patients,”
of the
of the
Internet
Internet
is no
is no
longer
longer informs
is aisshocking
a shocking
revelation
revelation
of how
of how useuse
informs
Dr Dr
Tara,
Tara,
who
who
works
works
limited
justjust
to entertainment
to entertainment as the
dire
dire
things
things
cancan
get.get.
According
According limited
as the
counselor
counselor
with
with
DelhiDelhior aorfun
a fun
wayway
to access
to access
to Dr
to Dr
Pulkit
Pulkit
Sharma,
Sharma,
based
based
non-profit
non-profit
organisation,
organisation,
77 77
APRIL
APRIL
20152015

IGD: THE
NEW KID
ON THE
BLOCK
SO NEW IS THIS
ADDICTION THAT
“INTERNET
GAMING
DISORDER” MERIT
MORE THAN A
MERE FOOTNOTE
IN THE LATEST
EDITION OF
THE DSM. THE
DIAGNOSTIC AND
STATISTICAL
MANUAL
OF MENTAL
DISORDERS
IS A TRUSTED
TEXTBOOK
USED BY
MENTAL HEALTH
PROFESSIONALS
AROUND THE
WORLD
THE DSM NOTES
THAT CURRENT
STUDIES
“SUGGEST THAT
WHEN [ADDICTED]
INDIVIDUALS
ARE ENGROSSED
IN INTERNET
GAMES, CERTAIN
PATHWAYS IN
THEIR BRAINS ARE
TRIGGERED IN
THE SAME DIRECT
AND INTENSE
WAY THAT A DRUG
ADDICT’S BRAIN
IS AFFECTED BY
A PARTICULAR
SUBSTANCE. THE
GAMING PROMPTS
A NEUROLOGICAL
RESPONSE THAT
INFLUENCES
FEELINGS OF
PLEASURE AND
REWARD, AND
THE RESULT, IN
THE EXTREME,
IS MANIFESTED
AS ADDICTIVE
BEHAVIOUR”

LEFT TRAVELLERS
HOOKED ON
TO THEIR
SMARTPHONES
DURING THEIR
EVERYDAY
COMMUTE IS A
COMMON SIGHT
78
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WEB JUNKIES

PHOTOS (MAIN) FERNANDO MORALES/PANOS; DREAMSTIME

CHILDREN'S NET ADDICTION
OFTEN LEAVES PARENTS
HELPLESS. BUT, PSYCHOLOGISTS
REVEAL THAT CHILDREN OFTEN
MIMIC GROWNUPS WHEN IT
COMES TO USING COMPUTERS
AND SMARTPHONES

Uday Foundation. In
2014, the foundation started
their Centre for Children
in Internet and Technology
Distress and Good Health
Clinic. With this, they aim to
address the issue of obsessive
Internet use among children,
especially those between
eight and 19 years. This is the
first Internet de-addiction
centre in the capital, and
Dr Tara shares with DCM
an interesting detail that
led them to initiate this
programme. “We used to have
computer workshops and
activities for children where
we had school and college
kids volunteering for us.
That’s when we realised that

these volunteers were totally
addicted to the Internet! It
instantly struck us that this
might be common among
children of that age group.
That’s when we thought that
we must help these children
get a “real life”,” she tells us.
Once the centre was started,
many parents started bringing
their children for counseling.
Given the gravity of the
problem and the lengths at
which it has, and can affect
us, Internet de-addiction
centres seem to have become
inevitable. The centres work
with children, parents, schools
and civic groups to provide
basic guidance with mentalhealth education, instituting

an early-warning system
and providing counseling.
There is a screening process,
supervised by qualified health
professionals, that involves
questionnaires, one-to-one
interaction, interviews, etc.
The country’s first
technology de-addiction
centre was started in
Bengaluru, by the National
Institute of Mental Health and
Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS)
in April 2014. The Service for
Healthy Use of Technology
(SHUT) Clinic is headed by
Dr Manoj Kumar Sharma,
additional professor at
the department of clinical
psychiatry, NIMHANS.
He tells us that technology

THE GUILT AND
HELPLESSNESS
THAT FOLLOW
INTERNET
ADDICTION
CAN LEAD
PATIENTS TO
PHYSICALLY
HARM
THEMSELVES

(including computers,
smartphones, iPads,
etc.) addiction in India is
comparable to international
prevalence, and it can be
seen more in the younger
age group — amongst single

79
APRIL 2015

or unmarried people.
According to him, in today’s
hi-tech world, teens begin
to use the Internet and
technology purely out of
curiosity and to experiment.
Dr Manoj Kumar explains,
“Take pornographic sites for
instance; the initial curiosity
progresses to a habit and
then to addiction. The unruly
behaviour that follows may
not be rebelliousness; it is a
combination of personality
(introvert/extrovert), low
frustration tolerance, coping
mechanism, procrastination,
the inability to manage free
time, peer pressure or even
academic issues.” He adds that
in the clinic, gaming, social
media, chatting, pornography,
downloading movies or
music and reading are all very
common among users in the
age group of 14-24 years.

CARPAL
TUNNEL
SYNDROME,
MOST
COMMON IN
EXCESSIVE
COMPUTER
USE, INCLUDES
ITCHING,
TINGLING OR
NUMBNESS OF
THE FINGERS
The need for an Internet
de-addiction centre in the
country was very evident,
post an Indian Council of
Medical Research (ICMR)
funded study conducted by
the department of Clinical
Psychology, Centre for
Addiction Medicine and
Centre for Public Health,
NIMHANS, where 2755
subjects in the age group of
18-65 were interviewed at
their door steps from an urban
locality in Bengaluru. It was
observed that addictive use
80
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

was present for – 1.3 per cent
(2 per cent males and 0.6 per
cent females) for the Internet;
4.1 per cent (5 per cent males
and 3.1 per cent females) for
mobile phones and 3.5 per
cent for social networking
sites. Another important
finding was that physical or
psychological distress was
present as morbidity – 6.8 per
cent with celphone addiction;
4.2 per cent with the Internet
use and 3 per cent with social
networking sites. Dr Manoj
Kumar adds that cyber-sexual
addiction is 0.2 per cent
India while internationally it
is 0.9 per cent.
Turnstone Global, a
non-profit organisation, has
successfully started Kolkata’s
first Internet de-addiction
centre earlier this year. Dr
Satyam Dey, Medical Director
at the organisaiton, reveals
some more numbers that
are equally shocking, if not
more. “India has a huge user
base for smartphones. The
total count of smartphone
user across the world is
around 1.78 billion and India
has almost 200 million
smartphone holders!” he says,
adding that very shortly India
will cross the US in terms of
Internet users, as we have a
population which comprises
mostly those below the age of
40. It can be easily assumed
that adolescent users are
largely contributing in this
segment. “In 2014, even
rural India had an increase
of 39 per cent in Internet
users, reaching 101 million
by October, 2014. It is also
estimated that over 65 per
cent of this are adolescents
using this facility without
any parental guidance or
supervision. Almost all
teenagers use the Internet
for gaming, watching porn,
explicit chats or dating.
As a whole, 18.88 per cent
adolescents use the Internet
including a small portion
that uses it for educational

THE ACTIVITY ROOM AT 'CENTRE FOR
CHILDREN IN INTERNET AND TECHNOLOGY
DISTRESS' AT UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI.
HERE, TEENAGERS ARE KEPT OCCUPIED WITH
BOARD GAMES, GROUP DISCUSSIONS AND
OTHER ACTIVITIES (BELOW)

WEB
WEB
JUNKIES
JUNKIES

activities
activities
such
such
as as
projects,
projects,
assignments
assignments
and
and
syllabus
syllabus
consultation,”
consultation,”
DrDr
Dey
Dey
states.
states.

PHOTOS UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI

PHOTOS UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI

SMART
SMART
PHONES,
PHONES,
NOT
NOT
PEOPLE
PEOPLE

The
The
numbers
numbers
may
may
be be
a little
a little
overwhelming,
overwhelming,
especially
especially
forfor
those
those
who
who
have
have
been
been
witness
witness
to this
to this
cyber
cyber
revolution
revolution
that
that
couldn’t
couldn’t
have
have
been
been
imagined
imagined
just
just
a decade
a decade
ago.
ago.
ForFor
parents
parents
who
who
once
once
upon
upon
a time
a time
were
were
content
content
with
with
thethe
basic
basic
DOS
DOS
or or
C++
C++
programs,
programs,
this
this
avalanche
avalanche
effect
effect
is an
is an
unforeseen
unforeseen
difficulty.
difficulty.
However,
However,
thethe
quandary
quandary
doesn’t
doesn’t
just
just
end
end
there.
there.
While
While
explaining
explaining
thethe
gravity
gravity
of the
of the
problem,
problem,
DrDr
Tara
Tara
mentions
mentions
thethe
case
case
of aof a
14-year-old
14-year-old
boyboy
who
who
came
came
with
with
hishis
distraught
distraught
parents.
parents.
“The
“The
parents
parents
were
were
shocked
shocked
at his
at his
sudden
sudden
change
change
in in
behaviour.
behaviour.
HeHe
would
would
shut
shut
himself
himself
in his
in his
room
room
forfor
days
days
either
either
chatting
chatting
with
with
friends
friends
or or
playing
playing
online
online
games
games
or or
just
just
surfing;
surfing;
often
often
even
even
skipping
skipping
meals.
meals.
Any
Any
questions
questions
from
from
thethe
family
family
would
would
getget
irritated
irritated
and
and
angry
angry
reactions.
reactions.
Internet
Internet
forfor
him
him
was
was
like
like
a drug
a drug
that
that
kept
kept
him
him
going.
going.
HisHis
parents
parents
gotgot
really
really
worried
worried
when
when
hehe
started
started
avoiding
avoiding
a bath
a bath
or or
brushing
brushing
hishis
teeth.
teeth.
HeHe
lost
lost
a lot
a lot
of weight
of weight
and
and
also
also
started
started
skipping
skipping
school,”
school,”
DrDr
Tara
Tara
shares.
shares.
Alarmed,
Alarmed,
thethe
parents
parents
gotgot
thethe
boyboy
to the
to the
de-addiction
de-addiction
centre
centre
forfor
counselling.
counselling.
After
After
a few
a few
sessions,
sessions,
there
there
was
was
a dramatic
a dramatic
improvement
improvement
in his
in his
behaviour.
behaviour.
However,
However,
DrDr
Tara
Tara
is is
of the
of the
opinion
opinion
that
that
thethe
advancements
advancements
in technology
in technology
and
and
thethe
Internet
Internet
areare
only
only
partially
partially
to be
to be
blamed.
blamed.
Retrospective
Retrospective
studies
studies
have
have
revealed
revealed
that
that
children
children
either
either
mimic
mimic
their
their
parents
parents
or or
areare
(inadvertently)
(inadvertently)
encouraged
encouraged
byby
them.
them.
“There
“There
have
have
been
been
cases
cases
where
where
parents
parents
have
have
given
given
smartphones
smartphones
to their
to their
kids
kids
as as
a a
summer
summer
vacation
vacation
funfun
activity.
activity.
The
The
children
children
spend
spend
thethe
entire
entire
vacation
vacation
playing
playing
games
games
or or

ARE
ARE
YOU
YOU
AN
AN
ADDICT?
ADDICT?
Following
Following
signs
signs
should
should
setset
anan
alarm
alarm
forfor
a a
visit
visit
to to
a counselor
a counselor
or or
a de-addiction
a de-addiction
centre:
centre:
• Being
• Being
preoccupied
preoccupied
with
with
a strong
a strong
desire
desire
to to
use
use
thethe
Internet
Internet
• A• feeling
A feeling
of of
restlessness,
restlessness,
anxiety,
anxiety,
irritability,
irritability,
depression
depression
while
while
trying
trying
to to
cutcut
down
down
Internet
Internet
use
use
• Marked
• Marked
increase
increase
in in
usage
usage
• Frequent
• Frequent
unsuccessful
unsuccessful
attempts
attempts
to to
control
control
Internet
Internet
use
use
• Lying
• Lying
to to
family
family
about
about
thethe
extent
extent
of of
Internet
Internet
use
use
• Continued
• Continued
excessive
excessive
use
use
despite
despite
knowing
knowing
thethe
consequences
consequences
• Most
• Most
non-school
non-school
hours
hours
being
being
spent
spent
onon
thethe
computer
computer
or or
playing
playing
video
video
games
games
• Falling
• Falling
behind
behind
with
with
assignments
assignments
• Falling
• Falling
grades
grades
• Choosing
• Choosing
thethe
computer
computer
or or
video
video
games
games
over
over
friends/family
friends/family
• Dropping
• Dropping
outout
of of
other
other
social
social
groups
groups
(clubs
(clubs
or or
sports)
sports)
• Being
• Being
irritable
irritable
when
when
notnot
playing
playing
a video
a video
game
game
or or
being
being
onon
thethe
computer
computer
Most
Most
common
common
physical
physical
symptoms
symptoms
associated
associated
with
with
teen
teen
Internet
Internet
addiction:
addiction:
• Carpal
• Carpal
tunnel
tunnel
syndrome:
syndrome:
itching,
itching,
tingling
tingling
or or
numbness
numbness
in in
thethe
fingers
fingers
(associated
(associated
with
with
repetitive
repetitive
motions
motions
such
such
asas
excessive
excessive
keyboard
keyboard
use)
use)
• Insomnia
• Insomnia
• Poor
• Poor
nutrition
nutrition
(failing
(failing
or or
refusing
refusing
to to
eat,
eat,
in in
order
order
to to
remain
remain
online)
online)
• Poor
• Poor
personal
personal
hygiene
hygiene
(again,
(again,
neglecting
neglecting
this
this
important
important
issue
issue
in in
order
order
to to
focus
focus
onon
online
online
activities)
activities)
• Headaches,
• Headaches,
persistent
persistent
back
back
and
and
neck
neck
pain
pain
• Dry
• Dry
eyes
eyes
and
and
vision
vision
problems
problems

81 81
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

chatting, finally getting so
hooked to the device that it
becomes difficult for them
to keep it away once school
resumes! Who is to be blamed
here?” she questions.
Dr Pulkit has something
similar to say. According
to him, these days many
parents rely heavily on the
Internet and smartphones
for even the simplest of

SURVEYS
INDICATE
THAT ABOUT
40 MILLION
INDIANS
ARE ONLINE
EVERYDAY,
60 PER CENT
BEING BELOW
THE AGE OF 25
tasks; children growing up
in this environment find
technological gadgets a very
normal part of life. “Plus,
children are often lonely as
parents are very busy. Such
kids get depressed and look for
a quick fix. The Internet offers
them a lot of exciting shortterm distractions to feel good
instantly,” he adds.
The number of teenagers
carrying smartphones
to schools leaves one
dumbfounded. No school
allows carrying and using
mobile phones on campus.
What else but a compulsive
desire to stay “connected”

can prompt children as
young as nine and 10 to carry
phones to school, despite
being well-aware that the
device might be confiscated?
The case of 15-year-old Puja
(name changed) opens up
another shocking reason
behind it – social status.
When Puja’s parents refused
to get her a smartphone, she
asked if she could get a copy
of just the device, without
an actual connection, so she
could hold the phone and look
“cool”. So, maintaining one’s
“status” among one’s peers
is also a major reason. Using
smartphones has become
important to ‘fit in’.

WHY LOG OFF?

It isn’t difficult to fathom
the impact any addiction can
have on one’s life. However,
when it comes to the
Internet and technology, the
psychological and physical
repercussions pose as two
separate evils to deal with,
despite being interconnected.
Internet addiction first
controls the thought process
and gradually starts affecting
the body. “The most evident
impacts are on one’s social
life and emotional well-being.
The patients are constantly
distressed and in their own
shell with severe adjustment
issues,” says Dr Pulkit.
Though counselling can
solve these problems almost
entirely, the physical effects
of extensive computer and
smartphone use can have

HOOKED ON PIXELS MEET SOME OF THE MOST POPULAR GAMES THAT DRAW THEIR SHARE OF ADDICTS
WORLD OF WARCRAFT

CALL OF DUTY

RELEASED OVER A DECADE AGO, THIS MMORPG
(MASSIVELY MULTIPLAYER ONLINE ROLEPLAYING GAME) STILL HAS OVER SIX MILLION
SUBSCRIBERS, MANY OF THEM FANATICALLY
ADDICTED. IN 2012 IT WAS CALCULATED THAT
SINCE ITS RELEASE, PLAYERS HAD COLLECTIVELY
PLAYED MORE HOURS OF WOW THAN MANKIND
HAD SPENT AS A SPECIES: 5.9 MILLION YEARS

THE ORIGINAL MILITARY SHOOT-EM-UP WAS RELEASED
IN 2003 BUT HAS SPAWNED DOZENS OF SEQUELS SINCE
THEN. SALES OF THE SERIES HAVE TOPPED US$10
BILLION. BOBBY KOTICK, CEO OF THE GAME PUBLISHER,
BOASTED THAT THE LATEST TITLE RELEASED “WAS THE
BIGGEST ENTERTAINMENT LAUNCH OF 2014 IN TERMS
OF REVENUE, SURPASSING ALL MOVIE, MUSIC, AND
BOOK LAUNCHES THIS YEAR”

82
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WEB
WEBJUNKIES
JUNKIES

ADDICTION
ADDICTIONALERT!
ALERT!
ACCORDING
ACCORDING
TOTO
AA
REPORT
REPORT
PUBLISHED
PUBLISHED
ININ
JANUARY
JANUARY
2015
2015
BYBY
THE
THE
INTERNET
INTERNET
AND
AND
MOBILE
MOBILE
ASSOCIATION
ASSOCIATION
OFOF
INDIA
INDIA
(IMAI):
(IMAI):

11
22
33

There
There
were
were
approximately
approximately
seven
seven
million
million
Internet
Internet
users
users
inin
India,
India,
inin
2001,
2001,
and
and
this
this
number
number
has
has
shot
shot
upup
byby
aa
shocking
shocking
2525
times
times
inin
the
the
last
last
1212
years.
years.

The
The
research
research
adds
adds
that
that
about
about
4040
million
million
Indians
Indians
are
are
online
online
every
every
day,
day,
and
and
over
over
6060
per
per
cent
cent
ofof
Internet
Internet
and
and
smartphone
smartphone
users
users
are
are
below
below
the
the
age
age
ofof
25.
25.

The
The
number
number
ofof
people
people
accessing
accessing
the
the
Internet
Internet
inin
India
India
will
will
jump
jump
from
from
190
190
million
million
inin
June
June
2014
2014
toto
over
over
550
550
million
million
inin
2018,
2018,
primarily
primarily
asas
aa
result
result
ofof
the
the
near-universal
near-universal
2G2G
reach,
reach,
improved
improved
3G3G
and
and
wireline,
wireline,
and
and
govern¬ment
govern¬ment
intervention
intervention
onon
such
such
key
key
issues
issues
asas
pub¬lic
pub¬lic
access,
access,
connectivity
connectivity
costs,
costs,
and
and
consumer
consumer
awareness.
awareness.

44
PHOTOS (MAIN) UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI; DREAMSTIME

PHOTOS (MAIN) UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI; DREAMSTIME

Even
Even
inin
rural
rural
India,
India,
the
the
Internet
Internet
user
user
base
base
isis
likely
likely
toto
gogo
upup
byby
4040
per
per
cent
cent
per
per
annum.
annum.

WHILE
WHILE
BEING
BEING
ININ
THE
THE
OUTDOORS
OUTDOORS
ISIS
EXTREMELY
EXTREMELY
IMPORTANT
IMPORTANT
FOR
FOR
ANY
ANY
CHILD'S
CHILD'S
OVERALL
OVERALL
GROWTH
GROWTH
AND
AND
DEVELOPMENT,
DEVELOPMENT,
INDOOR
INDOOR
GAMES
GAMES
LIKE
LIKE
CHESS,
CHESS,
CARDS,
CARDS,
AND
AND
ACTIVITIES
ACTIVITIES
LIKE
LIKE
READING,
READING,
STORY-TELLING,
STORY-TELLING,
DEBATES,
DEBATES,
ETC.
ETC.
MAKE
MAKE
CHILDREN
CHILDREN
MENTALLY
MENTALLY
ALERT
ALERT
AND
AND
ATTENTIVE.
ATTENTIVE.
INTERNET
INTERNET
DE-ADDICTION
DE-ADDICTION
CENTRES
CENTRES
ARE
ARE
TURNING
TURNING
BACK
BACK
TOTO
THE
THE
AGE-OLD
AGE-OLD
INDOOR
INDOOR
GAMES
GAMES
AND
AND
ACTIVITIES
ACTIVITIES
TOTO
CHANNELISE
CHANNELISE
A CHILD'S
A CHILD'S
MENTAL
MENTAL
ENERGY
ENERGY
BETTER
BETTER

STARCRAFT
STARCRAFT
II II

FLAPPY
FLAPPY
BIRD
BIRD

A SCI-FI
A SCI-FI
STRATEGY
STRATEGY
GAME
GAME
RELEASED
RELEASED
ININ
2010
2010
AND
AND
HIGHLY
HIGHLY
POPULAR
POPULAR
ININ
SOUTH
SOUTH
KOREA.
KOREA.
ONON
ITSITS
RELEASE
RELEASE
IT IT
BECAME
BECAME
THE
THE
FASTEST-SELLING
FASTEST-SELLING
GAME
GAME
ININ
ITSITS
GENRE
GENRE
OFOF
ALL
ALL
TIME,
TIME,
WITH
WITH
OVER
OVER
THREE
THREE
MILLION
MILLION
COPIES
COPIES
BLITZING
BLITZING
OUT
OUT
OFOF
STORES
STORES
WORLDWIDE
WORLDWIDE

SOMETIMES,
SOMETIMES,
SIMPLE
SIMPLE
GAMES
GAMES
CREATE
CREATE
THE
THE
MOST
MOST
RABID
RABID
JUNKIES.
JUNKIES.
FLAPPY
FLAPPY
BIRD
BIRD
WAS
WAS
A SMARTPHONE
A SMARTPHONE
GAME
GAME
WHERE
WHERE
YOU
YOU
SIMPLY
SIMPLY
HAD
HAD
TOTO
MAKE
MAKE
SURE
SURE
YOUR
YOUR
PIXELATED
PIXELATED
BIRD
BIRD
DIDN’T
DIDN’T
FLY
FLY
INTO
INTO
A PIPE
A PIPE
WITH
WITH
A FEW
A FEW
WELL-TIMED
WELL-TIMED
TAPS.
TAPS.
INDIE
INDIE
DEVELOPER
DEVELOPER
DONG
DONG
NGUYEN
NGUYEN
PULLED
PULLED
THE
THE
GAME
GAME
OFF
OFF
APP
APP
STORES,
STORES,
BECAUSE:
BECAUSE:
“IT“IT
HAPPENED
HAPPENED
TOTO
BECOME
BECOME
ANAN
ADDICTIVE
ADDICTIVE
PRODUCT.
PRODUCT.
I THINK
I THINK
IT IT
HAS
HAS
BECOME
BECOME
A PROBLEM.
A PROBLEM.
TOTO
SOLVE
SOLVE
THAT
THAT
PROBLEM,
PROBLEM,
IT’S
IT’S
BEST
BEST
TOTO
TAKE
TAKE
DOWN
DOWN
FLAPPY
FLAPPY
BIRD.
BIRD.
IT’S
IT’S
GONE.”
GONE.”
USERS
USERS
WAILED
WAILED
THEIR
THEIR
COLLECTIVE
COLLECTIVE
FURY,
FURY,
AND
AND
SEVERAL
SEVERAL
DEATH
DEATH
THREATS
THREATS
WERE
WERE
EVEN
EVEN
LEVELLED
LEVELLED
ATAT
THE
THE
HARD-NOSED
HARD-NOSED
NGUYEN
NGUYEN

8383
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

GAME
LINGO
THESE ARE TERMS
USED MAINLY BY
ONLINE PLAYERS.
HOWEVER, GAMING
SLANG CAN VARY
TREMENDOUSLY
FROM COUNTRY
TO COUNTRY

AFK

AWAY FROM KEYBOARD.
A STATE MOST
GAMING ADDICTS FIND
UNCOMFORTABLE

DING!

AN EXPRESSION OF JOY
UTTERED AFTER A USER
HAS PASSED A LEVEL OR
THEIR CHARACTER HAS
GAINED A NEW POWER

FETCH QUEST

AN IN-GAME MISSION
WHEREBY THE PLAYER
MUST TRAVERSE A
LARGE AREA, OFTEN
GOING BACK SEVERAL
LEVELS, TO FETCH A
CRUCIAL OBJECT THAT
WILL ALLOW THEM
TO ADVANCE TO THE
NEXT STAGE

KILL STEAL

WHEN A TEAM
OF GAMERS WORKS
TOGETHER TO
DEFEAT AN ENEMY,
AND ONE MEMBER
CLAIMS CREDIT

LEWT

REFERS TO HIGHLY
DESIRABLE IN-GAME
WEAPONS, ARMOUR OR
ITEMS. SOUNDS LIKE
"LOOT", GET IT?

PWN

AN EXPRESSION THAT
INDICATES ONE PLAYER
HAS BEATEN ANOTHER.
FOR EXAMPLE: “HIS
LEVEL 48 NECROWIZARD
JUST GOT TOTALLY
PWNED BY MY VIKING OF
THUNDER DEATH”

SMURFING

WHEN AN EXPERIENCED
PLAYER CREATES A
NEW ACCOUNT TO
DISGUISE THEMSELVES AS
A NEW PLAYER TO EASILY
DEFEAT INEXPERIENCED
OPPONENTS

much longer lasting effects if
left untreated for too long. Dr
Rajeev Sharma, orthopaedic
surgeon, Apollo Hospital, New
Delhi, notes that while excess
of anything is bad, technology
addiction can be worse.
Long hours of sitting in the
same position, be it with the
smartphone or the computer,
affects the posture causing
backache. Constant strain on
the back, neck and shoulders
can cause chronic problems
(repetitive strain injury) like
painful joints and fatigue.
Dr Tara mentions that
most patients at Uday
Foundation also complain
of Carpal tunnel syndrome
– something that is very
common among people who
use computers for extended
hours. The condition occurs
when the median nerve that
runs from the forearm into
the palm is pressed at the
wrist. Symptoms include
burning and itchy fingers, with
frequent numbness.
Long hours of staring
at the computer or
smartphone screens leave
the eyes strained, dry and
infection-prone, apart
from negatively affecting
the vision, says Dr Kinshuk
Biswas, ophthalmologist,
Columbia Asia Hospital,
Gurgaon. “Usually, the
eye blinks to lubricate the
cornea. This tear film covers
the transparent part of the
eye and is responsible for
its nourishment, facilitate
vision and to remove microbacterial flora which is
responsible for infections.
But when one is staring at
the screen for a long period
of time, the blink reflex
decreases, leading to the eyes
being dry and malnourished.
Such eyes are easily prone to
infections,” he adds.

A WELCOME INITIATIVE

Dr Tara states that most often,
parents bring their children
to the centres on hearing or

84
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

NO SLOWING
DOWN!
Increase in Internet use among
teens is potentially because the
availability and access to the Internet
has boomed, and it will continue to too.
The definition of ‘Internet addiction’ is
an evolving concept, whether in teens or
adults. It is still far from being seen as a
"medical disorder" in our Indian narrative.
It is seen definitely as a fast emerging
social narrative. What has not kept pace
at all is any thinking about what the
consequences are or can be – good,
bad or ugly.
— Psychiatrist Dr Kavita Arora, Children
First — A multi-disciplinary child
and adolescent mental health
service in Delhi

CHILDREN HOOKED TO ONLINE CHATTING
AND COMPUTER GAMES ARE DIFFICULT
TO WEAN AWAY FROM THE INTERNET.
BUT IT HAS BEEN SEEN THAT THEY
APPRECIATE THE PHYSICAL AND M ENTAL
"RELIEF" THAT ACTIVTIES NOT INVOLVING
TECHNOLOGY OFFER, AT THE INTERNET
DE-ADDICTION CENTRES (TOP)

PHOTOS UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI; DREAMSTIME

PHOTOS UDAY FOUNDATION, NEW DELHI; DREAMSTIME

WEB
WEBJUNKIES
JUNKIES

reading
reading
about
about
the
the
facility.
facility.
The
The
first
first
few
few
sessions
sessions
are
are
just
just
casual
casual
discussions
discussions
about
about
the
the
patient’s
patient’s
daily
daily
routine,
routine,
things
things
they
they
like
like
oror
dislike,
dislike,
etc.
etc.
“One
“One
can’t
can’t
simply
simply
announce
announce
toto
aa
patient
patient
– looks
– looks
like
like
you
you
are
are
addicted
addicted
toto
the
the
Internet.
Internet.
That
That
can
can
have
have
permanent
permanent
negative
negative
impacts,
impacts,
making
making
it it
almost
almost
impossible
impossible
toto
bebe
treated
treated
further.
further.
SoSo
wewe
have
have
toto
start
start
byby
asking
asking
very
very
casual
casual
questions
questions
about
about
mundane
mundane
activities.
activities.
ItIt
is is
amazing
amazing
toto
see
see
them
them
open-up
open-up
asas
the
the
sessions
sessions
progress,”
progress,”
she
she
reveals.
reveals.
“We
“We
also
also
conduct
conduct
several
several
formal
formal
and
and
informal
informal
sessions
sessions
with
with
students
students
atat
various
various
schools
schools
and
and
colleges,
colleges,
clubbed
clubbed
with
with
the
the
screening
screening
and
and
counseling,”
counseling,”
shares
shares
DrDr
Dey,
Dey,
asas
hehe
speaks
speaks
about
about
the
the
exact
exact
functioning
functioning
ofof
anan
Internet
Internet
de-addiction
de-addiction
centre.
centre.
When
When
a prospect
a prospect
comes
comes
toto
the
the
clinic,
clinic,
their
their
empanelled
empanelled
doctors
doctors
along
along
with
with
clinical
clinical
psychologists
psychologists
speak
speak
with
with
them
them
toto
note
note
their
their
societal
societal
level
level
(student/job
(student/job
holder/
holder/
residual
residual
user
user
etc.),
etc.),
level
level
ofof
understanding,
understanding,
maturity
maturity
level
level
and
and
other
other
relevant
relevant
descriptors
descriptors
toto
identify
identify
the
the
victim
victim
asas
a mild,
a mild,
moderate
moderate
oror
severe
severe
IAD
IAD
victim.
victim.
“Further
“Further
toto
such
such
identification,
identification,
there
there
is is
a huge
a huge
base
base
ofof
modules
modules
and
and
tools
tools
which
which
play
play
aa
pivotal
pivotal
role
role
inin
treating
treating
the
the
disorder.
disorder.
AtAt
our
our
centre,
centre,
the
the
practical
practical
and
and
theoretical
theoretical
assessment
assessment
and
and
monitoring
monitoring
is is
conducted
conducted
simultaneously.
simultaneously.
AtAt
regular
regular
intervals,
intervals,
wewe
sensitise
sensitise
students
students
inin
schools
schools
about
about
holistic
holistic
learning
learning
and
and
effective
effective
use
use
ofof
the
the
Internet.
Internet.
InIn
colleges
colleges
too
too
wewe
have
have
similar
similar
community
community
talks
talks
where
where
wewe
work
work
asas
a mentor-mentee
a mentor-mentee
team.
team.
We
We
now
now
plan
plan
toto
conduct
conduct
tri-monthly
tri-monthly
conferences
conferences
with
with
selected
selected
schools
schools
and
and
colleges
colleges
where
where
practical
practical
training
training
will
will
bebe
given,”
given,”
hehe
informs.
informs.
After
After
identifying
identifying
the
the
disorder
disorder
and
and
the
the
patient’s
patient’s

needs,
needs,
psychological
psychological
assessment
assessment
through
through
individual
individual
and
and
group
group
classes
classes
begins.
begins.
This
This
is is
followed
followed
byby
several
several
group
group
activities
activities
including
including
indoor
indoor
and
and
outdoor
outdoor
involvement.
involvement.
The
The
patients
patients
are
are
kept
kept
occupied
occupied
with
with
chess,
chess,
carom,
carom,
cards
cards
and
and
other
other
indoor
indoor
games.
games.
These
These
games
games
help
help
make
make
their
their
thoughts
thoughts
more
more
systematic
systematic
and
and
logical.
logical.
DrDr
Dey
Dey
emphasises
emphasises
onon
getting
getting
patients
patients
involved
involved
inin
other
other
activities
activities
like
like
visiting
visiting
places,
places,
volunteering
volunteering
and
and
other
other
social
social
projects
projects
that
that
interest
interest
them,
them,
toto
help
help
them
them
live
live
the
the
“real”
“real”
social
social
life.
life.

RESEARCH
RESEARCH
RESULTS
RESULTS
INDICATE
INDICATETHAT
THAT
THE
THENUMBER
NUMBER
OF
OFNET
NETUSERS
USERS
IN
ININDIA
INDIAWILL
WILL
JUMP
JUMPFROM
FROM
190
190MILLION
MILLIONIN
IN
JUNE
JUNE2014
2014TO
TO
WELL
WELLOVER
OVER
550
550MILLION
MILLION
IN
IN2018!
2018!
DrDr
Manoj
Manoj
Kumar,
Kumar,
from
from
the
the
SHUT
SHUT
Clinic
Clinic
follows
follows
a very
a very
systematically
systematically
designed,
designed,
step
step
byby
step
step
approach
approach
toto
address
address
the
the
problem:
problem:
Step
Step
1 –1 A
–A
clinical
clinical
interview
interview
toto
understand
understand
the
the
usage
usage
pattern
pattern
and
and
dysfunctions
dysfunctions
with
with
the
the
help
help
ofof
anan
Internet
Internet
addiction
addiction
test,
test,
video
video
game
game
addiction
addiction
tool,
tool,
Facebook
Facebook
intensity
intensity
questionnaire,
questionnaire,
screening
screening
tool
tool
for
for
mobile
mobile
phone,
phone,
pornography,
pornography,
shopping,
shopping,
gambling,
gambling,
etc.
etc.
Step
Step
2–
2 Educate
– Educate
and
and
provide
provide
feedback
feedback
about
about
the
the
usage
usage
and
and
dysfunctions,
dysfunctions,
and
and
promote
promote
healthy
healthy
use.
use.
Step
Step
3–
3 Work
– Work
onon
coping
coping
behaviour
behaviour
asas
well
well
asas
emotions,
emotions,
using
using
psychotherapy.
psychotherapy.
Step
Step
4 4Counselling
Counselling
the
the
family
family
soso
that
that
they
they
can
can
relax
relax
8585
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

WEB JUNKIES

THERE WERE
ABOUT SEVEN
MILLION
INTERNET
USERS IN
INDIA IN 2001,
AND THIS
NUMBER HAS
SHOT UP BY A
SHOCKING 25
TIMES IN THE
LAST 12 YEARS
amongst themselves.
Step 5 – Ensure that the
family diligently attends
treatment follow-up sessions.
“As most patients are
86
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

PHOTO DREAMSTIME

INTERNET ADDICTION HAS
SERIOUS OPHTHALMIC
AND ORTHOPAEDIC
REPERCUSSIONS THANKS TO
SITTING FOR LONG HOURS
AND STARING AT THE SCREEN

teenagers, they avoid coming
for long sessions. So we like to
achieve all these steps in three
to four sessions and encourage
them for long term follow-up,
at times, even via telephone.
We also initiate support
groups for family and patients
once a month,” he explains.
Apart from counseling, at
Uday Foundation, children are
encouraged to play traditional
games that are now almost
forgotten. Self-help groups
are created, i.e., once a child
starts using the Internet and
technology in a better manner,
they help other children
with their own experiences.
Plus, an effort is made to
lay a strong foundation
for a well-conceived

psychological, physical
and social development of
the child, through cultural
events, interactive education,
device-free retreats and
camps, school workshops
and seminars, community
building, and outdoor
adventure activities. Small
groups of patients along with
their parents spend a weekend
with the team, where the
entire day has group activities
like yoga, meditation, eating
together, games, storytelling
and much more. The
foundation now plans to
increase the frequency of
their group activities and
group interactions.
However, even after coping
with stressful withdrawal

symptoms like irritability,
anger, restlessness,
emotional distress, etc.,
there is no guarantee that a
patient won’t revert to old
habits given an environment
conducive enough, admit
those handling the cases.
“Like any addiction, this
too requires more of selfdetermination and will than
anything else. So, sticking
to the new, improved and
healthier routine has to be
a matter of personal choice
even when out of the centre.
That could effect a ‘cure’”
says Dr Tara. No wonder
then that these centres have
arrived with a fresh ray of
hope for ‘connections that
never seem to time-out’.

PHOTO GETTY IMAGES

THE MARS
88
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

SPACE

S’ MARCH!
IN 2011, MARS ONE JOINED NATIONAL SPACE AGENCIES
IN A BID TO SEND PEOPLE TO MARS, PERMANENTLY.
FROM THE INITIAL POOL OF 202,586 APPLICANTS,
AROUND 705 SPACE HOPEFULS REMAIN, PENDING
RESULTS FROM THE THIRD ROUND OF INTERVIEWS.
WHAT EXACTLY WILL HAPPEN IF THE CONTROVERSIAL
ONE-WAY MISSION TO MARS SUCCEEDS? WHAT KIND
OF A LIFE WILL THE LUCKY FEW LEAD? SARAH LIU
TOUCHES OFF TO FIND OUT

89
APRIL 2015

Every day of the week except
Sundays, a bleary-eyed Dianne
McGrath religiously drags
herself to the gym by 6am. Her
intensive exercise regimen
supports her on-off affair with
chocolate and cakes. An affair
that could see an untimely
death soon. In the months after
she speaks to DCM, there’s
a possibility she might get a
letter that changes her life.
As a hopeful in the Mars One
astronaut selection programme,
McGrath may have to give up
the chocolates, the cakes, and
the morning runs — in fact, give
up all of her life as she knows
it — in order to set off on a oneway mission to Mars.
t has long been
a distant dream
of authors and
philosophers
alike, a frontier
to end all
frontiers — the
colonising of
Mars. In the
little over 60
years since
Ray Bradbury
published his
splendidly
surreal tales
of pioneering
90
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

humans on the Red Planet
in The Martian Chronicles,
we first sent Laika the
martyred Russian dog into
space in 1952. We then
successfully toured, and
returned from, the moon in
1969. And next up, we look
set to commercialise space
flight, to make a trip beyond
the atmosphere available for
the super rich and sponsorfriendly alike.
We have spent millions and
risked lives to continuously
push the boundaries of our

understanding, and to fulfill
our age-old obsession with
exploring the outer limits of
our world. Indeed, now that
we’ve covered 83 percent of
the Earth with our footsteps,
the vastness of space presents
itself as a final frontier.
“The face of Earth is now
explored. There’s nowhere
to go but up,” explains
Douglas Vakoch, who is
both a professor in clinical
psychology at the Californian

Institute of Integral Studies,
and Director of Interstellar
Message Composition — and
the only social scientist — at
the SETI Institute, in San
Francisco, US.
In fact, our recent
times seem to have been
characterised by a revival of
the type of Mars fervour that
peaked 50 years ago after
NASA’s Mariner 4 spacecraft
sent back 21 shots of the
Red Planet in 1965, our first

SPACE

AN ARTIST RENDERING OF THE
MARS ONE COLONY, AS IMAGINED
BY THE DUTCH NONPROFIT
ORGANISATION WHICH INTENDS
TO SEND FOUR ASTRONAUTS
TO THE RED PLANET IN 2024
TO ESTABLISH A PERMANENT
HUMAN SETTLEMENT ON MARS

factor in certain up-front risks
of failure, with the possibility
of deaths, that national
agencies such as NASA are
no longer willing to consider.
Those that have made a
private pitch for a slice of the
Mars action include the high
profile SpaceX, founded by
Tesla Motors’ Elon Musk, and
Inspiration Mars Foundation,
headed by multi-millionaire
Dennis Tito, who also happens
to be the world’s first space
tourist to fund his own trip
into space. In mid-2001,
he spent nearly eight days
in orbit as a crewmember
on a visiting mission to the
International Space Station.
But another unlikely
candidate has emerged among
the big boys. Enter Mars One,
a not-for-profit organisation
established by Bas Lansdorp
and Arno Wielders, two
apparent underdogs from
The Netherlands. Even as big
players like Tito flag delays
to their target mission dates
— from 2018 to 2021 — Mars
One remains unbothered
by public scepticism as to
whether scientists yet have
the technical capabilities to
support human life on Mars.
Nine years from now, the
company aims to send an
initial team of four pioneers to
both scour and permanently
live on, the alien territory.

PHOTO BRYAN VERSTEEG/MARS ONE

ONE-WAY TICKET

glimpse into the planet’s
dusty, pockmarked wasteland.
Now, some scientists eager
to reignite the “glory days” of
the Apollo lunar missions, are
campaigning for a manned
mission to Mars, to leave a
working populous there.

THE NEW SPACE RACE

While we currently
send people aboard the
International Space
Station, the idea of actually

colonising a neighbouring
planet that no human has
yet visited certainly seems
like a leap in the dark. Yet
for its proponents, it would
also seem to be increasingly
possible, given advances
in technology, and our
increasing knowledge of
Martian territory. Seemingly,
a new Space Race is on, and
we may be closer to realising
Bradbury’s bizarre dream
than we had once thought

imaginable. The difference
now however is that national,
government-financed space
agencies are no longer alone
in calling the shots. Instead,
they now share the control
panels with a number of
private enterprises and notfor-profit organisations. And
as such, it is also difficult for
us to discern how likely their
plans are to be actioned.
Pundits suggest that
private missions to Mars can

The Mars One project hit the
news in 2011, when it unveiled
its surprising, yet it insists
legitimate, plan to establish a
permanent human settlement
on Mars, from 2024. In the
meantime, Mars One says it
aims to raise the US$6 billion
that it estimates it will need
— a steal compared to NASA’s
$80 to $100 billion budget for
deep space exploration over
the next 20 years.
This Mars mission,
however, has been likened
to a jettison. The first-ever
Mars residents will never see
91
APRIL 2015

their families and friends on
Earth in person again. Then
as Mars and Earth make their
closest approach at twice
yearly intervals, Mars One
aims to raise a further US$4
billion, in order to grow the
colony population by a further
four residents every two years,
as new and intrepid explorers
land on Mars.
The plan, timed over six
missions in total, seems
simple. For some, perhaps it’s
a little too simple. From 2016,
a demonstration mission
plans to send what it deems
as “necessary” supplies to
Mars. Two years later, Mars
One will send a rover to locate
the most suitable place for the
settlement. In 2020, Lansdorp
and Wielders aim to send the
following to Mars: another
unit for supplies, another
rover, two life support units,
and two living units.

PHOTO BRYAN VERSTEEG/MARS ONE

MARS ONE IS
EVIDENTLY
UNBOTHERED
BY THE PUBLIC
SCEPTICISM AS
TO WHETHER
SCIENTISTS
YET HAVE THE
TECHNICAL
CAPABILITIES
TO SUPPORT
HUMAN LIFE
ON MARS
Assuming that every
mission goes smoothly, the
two car-sized robotic rovers
will first move all equipment
to the settlement, where they
will then assemble all the solar
panels needed for life-support
systems. Next will begin
the effort to start gathering
water from the Martian soil,
essentially “baking” it in order
to extract water .
Initial food supplies appear
to be sparse, save for some
92
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

MARS ONE PLANS TO
LAUNCH AN UNMANNED
SUPPLY MISSION IN JANUARY
2016. IT WILL LAND THAT
OCTOBER WITH MORE THAN
2,000 KILOGRAMS OF FOOD
OR OTHER SUPPLIES, IN
READINESS FOR HUMAN
SETTLEMENT IN 2024

THE AUDITION
PROCESS
With 200,000 applicants
received for just four “pioneer”
positions, the Mars One project
has had to seriously whittle down the
candidates. At press time, a total of 1058
people are still in the running — 586 men
and 472 woman — with more than 107
countries represented. All candidates are
aged 18 years or older; 357 are under 25
and 415 are under 35. The oldest person on
the list is 81 years of age. The candidates
will be narrowed down to 40 by 2018,
before moving on to a Mars Onesponsored reality show, where
the viewers will decide who
will colonize the
Red Planet.

SPACE

emergency “storable food”.
On arrival, Mars settlers will
certainly not be savouring
sushi and salami, and clinking
champagne glasses. On arrival,
they’ll need to start growing
food where possible, or live
on a diet of insects and algae,
within a self-sustaining and
life-supporting ecosystem
that will somehow produce
a viable atmosphere. When
there’s eventually enough
water and air for humans
to survive in the artificial
atmosphere for a long enough
time, the first four “chosen
ones” will be launched on
their seven-to-eight-month
journey to Mars.
Naturally, a plan as
ambitious as Mars One invites
praise, criticism and ridicule.
Granted, the project initially
inspired a well publicised
200,000 applicants to sign
up. Yet initially at least, the
project has yet to describe in
detail its exact plans for some
of the colony’s basic needs.
Lansdorp told a 2012 TEDx
Talk: “We have rockets that
can be used to send humans
and equipment to Mars. We
know how to land equipment
on Mars. And we have the
technology to keep humans
alive in space [with photos
of the International Space
Station] and we can use this
technology to sustain human
life on Mars,” he noted. “And
we have robotic support
missions [with photos of
rovers] that help the humans
on Mars. All the technology
that we need to send humans
to Mars and to sustain their
lives there, exists.”
Despite the fact that
they may seem as yet to lack
a certain weight in their
promises to develop the
necessary technology over
the next decade, Lansdorp
and Wielders’ team dares to
dream. And of course, not
knowing everything yet does
not guarantee future failure.
History has shown that, no

MEET THE APPLICANTS
WE CAUGHT UP WITH THREE INDIVIDUALS
ON THE LONG-LIST FOR THE MARS ONE
PROJECT. THEY TALKED TO DCM ABOUT THE
CHALLENGES AHEAD, AND THE THOUGHT OF
LEAVING OUR EARTH FOREVER

Dianne McGrath,
sustainability and
business consultant, in
Melbourne, Australia I
am not afraid of going to
Mars and leaving Earth. I
know that the loneliness
aspect is something
the selected astronauts
will have trained hard

to be ready for, and they
will have many tools
available to help through
tough times. We will
have Internet access, so
contact with loved ones
will still be possible. What
does worry me is whether
I can live up to my own
expectations. I feel that
if I’m lucky enough to
be chosen, I am not
only representing Mars
One, but also the rest of
humanity. That’s a lot of
responsibility!
Robert P. Schröder
electrical engineering
student at the University
of Applied Science
Darmstadt, Germany I
am not scared of being
away from Earth for a
lifetime — that's the
biggest adventure of
humanity. There will be
limitless possibilities to
build up the first outpost
and civilisation on Mars;
other organisations will
follow, or are already
preparing their venture.
I like challenge. Up
there, one will need to
adapt accordingly, as

there won't be the same
resources as on Earth. So
creativity will be a must.
Max Fagin, aerospace
engineering graduate
student at Purdue
University, and
engineering intern at
SpaceX in Los Angeles,
USA Life on Mars won’t
be easy. And while I don’t
want my life to be difficult,
some difficulty is usually
required, in order to
enable something great
— such as, for example,
making humanity a
multi-planetary species.
But that doesn’t bother
me. Stop and think about
just how strange it is
that we live in a world
where a significant
fraction of the human

race will never have to
worry about producing
enough food to eat, or
obtaining enough water
to drink. Historically, that
is extremely unusual.
I’m willing to give up the
luxury of food delivered to
my doorstep in exchange
for the very genuine
challenges that living on
Mars presents.
93
APRIL 2015

matter the challenge, it
takes enterprise and audacity
to enable something great
to happen.
In the words of former US
President John F Kennedy,
we chose to go to the moon
not because it was easy, but
because it was hard. Given
that mankind has made it
to the moon and back, with
1960s technology, what’s so
far-fetched about this plan?

PHOTO BRYAN VERSTEEG/MARS ONE

ON ARRIVAL,
SETTLERS
WILL EITHER
NEED TO START
GROWING
FOOD, OR LIVE
ON INSECTS
AND ALGAE,
WITHIN A SELFSUSTAINING
ECOSYSTEM
THAT WILL
PRODUCE
A VIABLE
ATMOSPHERE
As Vakoch, whose
published works include
Psychology of Space
Exploration, tells DCM, one
major difference this time
around is the apparent finality
of the Mars mission. “Most
people can’t conceive of
going on Mars One, because
they can’t imagine leaving

behind everything they love
on Earth,” he notes. Yet as he
reminds us, this experience
is far from unique in human
history. “In reality, this is
similar to the loss that all
immigrants felt throughout
the history of human
migrations, whether they
were forced to leave home or
whether they left voluntarily,”
he says.
Judged from the comfort
of the future, Mars One may
turn out to be just the kind of
plan that we need, in order
to overcome the difficulty,
cost and danger of a roundtrip mission — and to ensure
that those who travel there
can really achieve something
meaningful. “Mars One
is revolutionary because
it overcomes one of the
greatest challenges faced by
past missions planned for
the Red Planet: getting back
home safely”, says Vakoch.
Instead of grappling with
complicated, not to mention
extremely costly, procedures
to launch from Mars back to
Earth, he points out that the
solution Mars One provides
is elegantly simple (and “freeof-charge”). Its astronauts
will simply never return.
“Astronauts usually have
the comfort of knowing they
can return to a safe, familiar
environment. However
difficult the mission is, there’s
an end in sight. Not so for
Mars One. By launching off
to Mars, they’ll be making a

THE MARS ONE LIVING
SPACES ARE DESIGNED
TO BE COMFORTABLE BUT
MINIMALIST SINCE SHIPPING
OF ONLY THE MOST CRITICAL
LIVING ELEMENTS WILL BE
POSSIBLE

A BRIEF HISTORY OF MARS
PRE-1500S
THE RAGING KING

1500s
NAKED EYE

USING METHODS WAY AHEAD OF THEIR TIME TO PREDICT
ASTRONOMICAL EVENTS SUCH AS ECLIPSES, THE BABYLONIANS —
AS EARLY AS 400 BC —OBSERVE MARS LITERALLY AS A RED PLANET
THAT FOLLOWS A STRANGE PATH IN THE SKY. THEY NAME IT AFTER
NERGAL, A FIERY GOD OF DESTRUCTION AND WAR THAT WENT BY
THE MONIKER, “RAGING KING” . SIMILARLY, MARS, AS IT IS KNOWN
TODAY, DERIVED ITS NAME FROM THE ROMAN GOD OF WAR

BEFORE THE INVENTION OF THE TELESCOPE, DANISH
NOBLEMAN TYCHO BRAHE OBSERVES THE HEAVENS IN A
HUMBLE OBSERVATORY ON AN ISLAND NEAR COPENHAGEN.
RELYING ON NOTHING BUT 20/20 VISION AND SOME “VERY LARGE
INSTRUMENTS”, BRAHE ACCURATELY POSITIONS MARS TO
WITHIN FOUR MINUTES OF ARC IN 1576. HE HAS A CRATER ON
MARS AND ON THE MOON NAMED AFTER HIM

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SPACE
SPACE

commitment
commitment
toto
anan
unknown
unknown
way
way
of of
lifelife
that
that
they
they
can
can
never
never
‘unchoose’,”
‘unchoose’,”
hehe
notes.
notes.

LIFE
LIFE
ON
ON
MARS
MARS

ToTo
understand
understand
the
the
kind
kind
of of
environment
environment
that
that
Mars
Mars
One
One
astronauts
astronauts
will
will
need
need
toto
endure,
endure,
wewe
might
might
best
best
approximate
approximate
the
the
kind
kind
of of
conditions
conditions
our
our
early
early
ancestors
ancestors
once
once
braved.
braved.
Way
Way
before
before
the
the
advent
advent
of of
the
the
supermarket,
supermarket,
even
even
before
before
wewe
mastered
mastered
farming,
farming,
how
how
diddid
early
early
mankind
mankind
stave
stave
offoff
unbearable
unbearable
hunger
hunger
and
and
cold?
cold?
How
How
diddid
wewe
know
know
what
what
was
was
safe
safe
toto
eat,
eat,
and
and
what
what
wasn’t?
wasn’t?
Every
Every
waking
waking
moment,
moment,
perhaps,
perhaps,
was
was
a matter
a matter
of of
lifelife
and
and
death.
death.
And
And
toto
live
live
wasn’t
wasn’t
about
about
choosing
choosing
low
low
fatfat
oror
gluten-free
gluten-free
options.
options.
It It
was
was
survive
survive
oror
die.
die.
Similarly,
Similarly,
potential
potential
Mars
Mars
pioneers
pioneers
will
will
need
need
toto
confront
confront
the
the
perils
perils
of of
the
the
alien
alien
conditions,
conditions,
the
the
nature
nature
of of
which
which
areare
still
still
largely
largely
unknown.
unknown.
While
While
wewe
understand
understand
Mars
Mars
shares
shares
a a
2424
hour
hour
and
and
4040
minute
minute
day,
day,
which
which
humans
humans
can
can
adapt
adapt
to,to,
some
some
differences
differences
known
known
toto
usus
areare
clearly
clearly
potentially
potentially
fatal.
fatal.
Settlers
Settlers
may
may
bebe
literally
literally
dying
dying
toto
live
live
onon
Mars.
Mars.
Apart
Apart
from
from
the
the
wonder
wonder
and
and
weirdness
weirdness
that
that
two
two
Martian
Martian
moons
moons
might
might
inspire,
inspire,
there
there
is also
is also
potential
potential
danger
danger
at at
every
every
corner.
corner.
For
For
one
one
thing,
thing,
prolonged
prolonged
weightlessness
weightlessness
onon
Mars
Mars
could
could
result
result
inin

1600
1600
s s
SKETCHUP
SKETCHUP
POSSIBLY
POSSIBLY
DUE
DUE
TOTO
THE
THE
INVENTION
INVENTION
OFOF
THE
THE
TELESCOPE,
TELESCOPE,
THE
THE
1600S,
1600S,
UNLIKE
UNLIKE
THE
THE
CENTURIES
CENTURIES
THAT
THAT
PRECEDED
PRECEDED
IT,IT,
IS IS
ONE
ONE
THAT
THAT
PRONOUNCES
PRONOUNCES
MANY
MANY
IMPORTANT
IMPORTANT
DISCOVERIES
DISCOVERIES
ABOUT
ABOUT
SPACE
SPACE
AND
AND
MARS.
MARS.
IN IN
1659,
1659,
PROMINENT
PROMINENT
DUTCH
DUTCH
MATHEMATICIAN
MATHEMATICIAN
AND
AND
SCIENTIST
SCIENTIST
CHRISTIAN
CHRISTIAN
HUYGENS
HUYGENS
COMPLETES
COMPLETES
THE
THE
FIRST
FIRST
SKETCH
SKETCH
OFOF
MARS
MARS
AND
AND
ANAN
ACCURATE
ACCURATE
COMPUTATION
COMPUTATION
OFOF
THE
THE
RED
RED
PLANET'S
PLANET'S
24-HOUR
24-HOUR
PERIOD.
PERIOD.
THIRTEEN
THIRTEEN
YEARS
YEARS
LATER,
LATER,
HUYGENS
HUYGENS
DISCOVERS
DISCOVERS
A WHITE
A WHITE
SPOT
SPOT
ATAT
THE
THE
SOUTH
SOUTH
POLE
POLE
OFOF
OUR
OUR
NEIGHBOURING
NEIGHBOURING
PLANET,
PLANET,
WHICH
WHICH
WEWE
KNOW
KNOW
TODAY
TODAY
ASAS
THE
THE
SOUTHERN
SOUTHERN
POLAR
POLAR
CAP
CAP
WHERE
WHERE
ICEICE
IS IS
FOUND
FOUND

95 95
APRIL
APRIL
2015
2015

PHOTOS BRYAN VERSTEEG/MARS ONE; NASA (MARTIAN MOON)

irrevocable physiological
changes in astronauts,
including the potential
for muscle atrophy and
osteoporosis. Although this
may not be an issue, since the
astronauts have a one-way
ticket. Unlike our Earth, Mars
has a virtually non-existent
atmosphere (less than one
percent the weight of Earth’s),
which would fail to protect
the astronauts from elevated
levels of radiation or cancercausing cosmic rays far
outweighing NASA’s lifetime
dosage for their astronauts.
Long-term radiation effects
are not the only dangers the
settlers will be exposed to. The
Mars atmosphere is composed
of 95 percent carbon dioxide
and three percent nitrogen.
Oxygen, mankind’s life
source, is found only in trace
amounts, meaning breathing
would be simply impossible
without aid. Thankfully,
water is now believed to
be found everywhere on
landlocked Mars, in the
form of permafrost. Yet it is
currently visible only at the
northern pole, and found at
the southern pole in the form
of “dry ice” (a combination of
carbon dioxide and water).
The climate of Mars is an
important factor to consider.
Annual temperatures range
from a high of 20 degrees
Celsius to a low of about
minus 153 degrees Celsius
— some 59.8 degrees Celsius
colder than the lowest

recorded temperature in
Antarctica. Settlers won’t be
huddling together over hot
chocolate beside a warm fire,
either. Hot chocolate would
more likely be an insect-algae
blended smoothie, while fires
are a hazard in an oxygen-rich
atmosphere, which ironically,
settlers need in order for them
to breathe.

ESTABLISHING A PERMANENT
HUMAN COLONY ON MARS
WILL BE NO EASY FEAT;
ANNUAL TEMPERATURES
RANGE FROM 20 DEGREES
CELSIUS TO A LOW OF MINUS
153 DEGREES CELSIUS

HUMAN
BEINGS ON
PLANET
MARS WILL
RISK EITHER
FREEZING IN
THE ABSENCE
OF CRITICAL
HEATING
TECHNOLOGY
OR THEY
MAY JUST
COMBUST
FROM TOO
MUCH OXYGEN
Humans on Mars will risk
either freezing in the absence
of critical heating technology,
or spontaneously combusting
from too much oxygen. Strong
winds also create violent dust
storms on Mars. Potentially,
these can inhibit solar panels
from converting sunlight into
sufficient energy, as they did
to NASA’s rovers Opportunity
and Spirit (now defunct) in

A BRIEF HISTORY OF MARS
1700s
TWO IS BETTER THAN ONE

1800s
MARTIAN CANALS

MORE THAN A CENTURY BEFORE THE DISCOVERY OF MARS’ TWO MOONS,
THE FICTIONAL ASTRONOMERS IN THE NOVEL GULLIVER’S TRAVELS
PRESCIENTLY SAY: "THEY HAVE LIKEWISE DISCOVERED TWO LESSER STARS,
OR SATELLITES, WHICH REVOLVE AROUND MARS, WHEROF THE INNERMOST
IS DISTANT FROM THE CENTRE OF THE PRIMARY PLANET EXACTLY THREE OF
HIS DIAMETERS, AND THE OUTERMOST FIVE"

USING A PRIMITIVE TELESCOPE THAT SPANS ONLY 0.2 METRES (COMPARED TO
THE 13.2 METRE HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE), ITALIAN ASTRONOMER GIOVANNI
SCHIAPARELLI OBSERVES MARS AND DRAWS OUT WHAT HE THINKS ARE CANALI
OR CANALS. PERCIVAL LOWELL, AN AMERICAN ASTRONOMER, LATER GROWS AN
OBSESSION BASED ON SCHIAPARELLI’S IDEA AND CREATES MAPS OUT OF THE
CANALI, WRONGLY PREDICTING THEY WERE CREATED BY ALIEN LIFE FORMS

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DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

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SPACE

2007.
IfIf
this
happens
toto
the
2007.
this
happens
the
colony,
it it
wouldn’t
bebe
a matter
colony,
wouldn’t
a matter
ofof
putting
robots
toto
sleep
until
putting
robots
sleep
until
the
storm
abates
oror
enacting
the
storm
abates
enacting
a “total
recall”,
it it
would
mean
a “total
recall”,
would
mean
terminating
our
settlers.
terminating
our
settlers.

REALITY
REALITYCHECKS
CHECKS

The
The
idea
idea
ofof
a one-way
a one-way
trip
trip
toto
Mars,
Mars,
paired
paired
with
with
some
some
ofof
the
the
worst-case
worst-case
scenarios
scenarios
we’ve
we’ve
painted,
painted,
seemingly
seemingly
conjures
conjures
anan
image
image
ofof
a potential
a potential
suicide
suicide
mission.
mission.
Yet
Yet
unlike
unlike
the
the
kamikaze
kamikaze
pilots
pilots
inin
World
World
War
War
II,II,
our
our
intrepid
intrepid
space
space
settlers
settlers
aren’t
aren’t
going
going
with
with
the
the
intention
intention
toto
die.
die.
ToTo
say,
say,
with
with
conviction,
conviction,
that
that
anything
anything
that
that
can
can
gogo
wrong
wrong
will
will
gogo
wrong;
wrong;
oror
worse,
worse,
toto
predict
predict
the
the
deaths
deaths
ofof
astronauts
astronauts
is is
akin
akin
toto
disregarding
disregarding
their
their
prerogatives,
prerogatives,
and
and
the
the
aspirations
aspirations
ofof
many
many
explorers
explorers
who
who
dream
dream
big.
big.
The
The
potential
potential
risks
risks
involved
involved
have
have
been
been
factored
factored
inin
byby
candidates
candidates
like
like
McGrath,
McGrath,
but
but
not
not
dwelled
dwelled
upon.
upon.
“A“A
lotlot
could
could
gogo
wrong
wrong
onon
Mars.
Mars.
The
The
limits
limits
ofof
our
our
bodies
bodies
will
will
bebe
tested,
tested,
and
and
wewe
will
will
bebe
not
not
unlike
unlike
living
living
experiments.”
experiments.”
She’s
She’s
been
been
spending
spending
her
her
days
days
onon
Earth
Earth
preparing
preparing
and
and
musing
musing
about
about
the
the
possibilities
possibilities
ofof
DCM
DCM
, ,
Martian
Martian
life,
life,
and
and
tells
tells
“If“If
I were
I were
scared
scared
and
and
worried,
worried,
I wouldn’t
I wouldn’t
have
have
signed
signed
upup
for
for
aa
one-way
one-way
mission.”
mission.”
AtAt
the
the
same
same
time
time
though,
though,
the
the
grand
grand
plan
plan
doesn’t
doesn’t
inspire
inspire
confidence
confidence
inin
a lot
a lot
ofof
the
the
scientific
scientific
community
community
——
much
much

less
less
inin
some
some
candidates
candidates
themselves.
themselves.
“My
“My
main
main
reservation
reservation
is is
that
that
wewe
have
have
yet
yet
toto
develop
develop
critical
critical
pieces
pieces
ofof
technology
technology
that
that
are
are
required
required
toto
land
land
and
and
support
support
humans
humans
onon
Mars,”
Mars,”
says
says
Max
Max
Fagin,
Fagin,
anan
aerospace
aerospace
engineering
engineering
graduate
graduate
student
student
atat
Purdue
Purdue
University,
University,
US.
US.
Fagin,
Fagin,
who
who
is is
also
also
a running
a running
candidate
candidate
for
for
Mars
Mars
One,
One,
admits
admits
toto
some
some
reservations.
reservations.
“I“I
am
am
concerned
concerned
that
that
Mars
Mars
One
One
hasn’t
hasn’t
grasped
grasped
the
the
scale
scale
ofof
the
the
problem
problem
they
they
have
have
bitten
bitten
DCM
DCM
off,”
off,”
hehe
notes.
notes.
When
When
asked
asked
if if
there
there
was
was
anything
anything
that
that
would
would
change
change
his
his
mind
mind
toto
go,go,
hehe
was
was
clear.
clear.
“Absolutely.
“Absolutely.
IfIf
I wasn’t
I wasn’t
convinced
convinced
that
that
allall
required
required
work
work
had
had
been
been
done
done
toto
ensure
ensure
a reasonable
a reasonable
chance
chance
ofof
mission
mission
success,
success,
it it
would
would
bebe
irrational
irrational
toto
go.go.
I’m
I’m
not
not
suicidal,”
suicidal,”
hehe
notes.
notes.
Perhaps
Perhaps
the
the
vagueness
vagueness
and
and
unanswered
unanswered
questions
questions
surrounding
surrounding
Mars
Mars
One
One
is is
aa
reason
reason
some
some
sceptics
sceptics
have
have
dismissed
dismissed
Mars
Mars
One
One
asas
nothing
nothing
more
more
than
than
a gimmick.
a gimmick.
Four-time
Four-time
NASA
NASA
astronaut,
astronaut,
scientist
scientist
and
and
author
author
ofof
the
the
book
book
Skywalking,
Skywalking,
Tom
Tom
Jones
Jones
tells
tells
DCM
DCM
that
that
Mars
Mars
One
One
feels
feels
like
like
little
little
more
more
than
than
a “public
a “public
relations
relations
stunt”.
stunt”.
The
The
possibilities
possibilities
for
for
Mars
Mars
One
One
if if
——
and
and
it’sit’s
a big
a big
if if
——
they
they
manage
manage
toto
pull
pull
offoff
the
the
project
project
would
would
bebe
undeniable.
undeniable.
Yet
Yet
people
people
like
like
Jones
Jones
are
are
more
more
than
than
just
just
concerned
concerned
about
about
the
the
soundness
soundness
ofof
the
the
plan;
plan;
they
they

1800
1800
s s
LUNAR
LUNAR
NUGGETS
NUGGETS
IIT’S
IIT’S
HARD
HARD
TOTO
TAKE
TAKE
TWO
TWO
ALIEN
ALIEN
MOONS
MOONS
SERIOUSLY
SERIOUSLY
WHEN
WHEN
THEY
THEY
ARE
ARE
SHAPED
SHAPED
LIKE
LIKE
GOLD
GOLD
NUGGETS
NUGGETS
AND
AND
HAVE
HAVE
BEEN
BEEN
MISTAKEN
MISTAKEN
SOSO
MANY
MANY
TIMES
TIMES
FOR
FOR
ASTEROIDS.
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YET,
YET,
THE
THE
MOONS,
MOONS,
DISCOVERED
DISCOVERED
ININ
1877
1877
BYBY
AMERICAN
AMERICAN
ASTRONOMER
ASTRONOMER
ASAPH
ASAPH
HALL,
HALL,
ARE
ARE
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NAMED
AFTER
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PHOBOS
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(FEAR)
(FEAR)
AND
AND
DEIMOS
DEIMOS
(PANIC),
(PANIC),
THE
THE
TWO
TWO
FEARSOME
FEARSOME
HORSES
HORSES
THAT
THAT
PULLED
PULLED
THE
THE
FIERY
FIERY
CHARIOTS
CHARIOTS
OFOF
GREEK
GREEK
WAR
WAR
GOD
GOD
ARES,
ARES,
THE
THE
EQUIVALENT
EQUIVALENT
TOTO
THE
THE
ROMAN
ROMAN
GOD
GOD
MARS.
MARS.
BUT
BUT
DON’T
DON’T
MESS
MESS
WITH
WITH
THESE
THESE
NUGGETS.
NUGGETS.
UNLIKE
UNLIKE
THE
THE
EARTH’S
EARTH’S
MOON,
MOON,
PHOBOS
PHOBOS
REVOLVES
REVOLVES
ATAT
ANAN
ASTONISHING
ASTONISHING
SPEED
SPEED
AROUND
AROUND
THE
THE
RED
RED
PLANET
PLANET
THREE
THREE
TIMES
TIMES
ININ
ONE
ONE
MARTIAN
MARTIAN
DAY
DAY
, WHILE
, WHILE
ITSITS
“NERVOUS”
“NERVOUS”
COUNTERPART
COUNTERPART
REPELS
REPELS
EVEN
EVEN
DUST
DUST
AND
AND
DEBRIS
DEBRIS
BECAUSE
BECAUSE
OFOF
A LACK
A LACK
OFOF
GRAVITATIONAL
GRAVITATIONAL
PULL
PULL

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PHOTO BRYAN VERSTEEG/MARS ONE

also believe that we’re too
limited in our technological
capabilities. And on Mars, that
could translate to throwing
lives away.
Some even put data
behind the caution. A team
of US graduate students from
Massachusetts Institute of
Technology (MIT) predicted
that the first four Mars One
colonists would only live 68
days before they essentially
died of suffocation. To avoid
this ghastly scenario, a system
to vent excess oxygen —
where too much is not good
for you — will be needed.
Currently, this system
hasn’t been developed for
use in space.
Rather than risk lives,
Jones, who is now retired
from NASA, subscribes to
a step-by-step approach to
paving the way for humans to
Mars. “Mars One’s goals are
not technically achievable
with present technology,” he
told DCM. “Mars colonisation
will only take place after
we’ve learned to harvest
resources in space: sunlight
at commercial scales, water,
construction materials and
rare metals from the moon
or asteroids.” Jones argues
that this phased approach
will prove far less risky. “The
success of those commercial
businesses will provide the
know-how and cash needed
to finally reach, and stay on
Mars,” he notes.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF MARS
1938
WAR OF THE WORLDS
ACTOR ORSON WELLES STAGES A SENSATIONAL RADIO PERFORMANCE OF H.G WELLS’ WAR OF THE WORLDS THAT IS SO CONVINCING IT
CAUSES MASS PANIC WHEN LISTENERS LEARN ABOUT AN UNSTOPPABLE ALIEN INVASION FROM MARS. DENIZENS OF AMERICA RUN OUT
OF THEIR HOMES AND FLEE. THE ACTOR'S STELLAR PERFORMANCE BEGINS LIKE THIS: “WE KNOW NOW THAT IN THE EARLY YEARS OF THE
TWENTIETH CENTURY THIS WORLD WAS BEING WATCHED CLOSELY BY INTELLIGENCES GREATER THAN MAN'S AND YET AS MORTAL AS HIS
OWN. WE KNOW NOW THAT AS HUMAN BEINGS BUSIED THEMSELVES ABOUT THEIR VARIOUS CONCERNS THEY WERE SCRUTINIZED AND
STUDIED, PERHAPS ALMOST AS NARROWLY AS A MAN WITH A MICROSCOPE MIGHT SCRUTINIZE THE TRANSIENT CREATURES THAT SWARM
AND MULTIPLY IN A DROP OF WATER.”

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DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

SPACE

PLANT AND VEGETATION
SURVIVAL WILL BE A
CRITICAL COMPONENT
IN THE SUCCESS OF THE
MARS ONE PROJECT

NASA, meanwhile, is in
the process of developing the
capabilities that it believes are
needed to send humans to an
asteroid by 2025, with Mars in
the pipeline by the 2030s.
But that’s not it. A
large part of the Mars One
mission’s success also hinges
on whether or not Mars One
can raise the money it needs
to finance the five advance
missions before settlers
arrive, not to mention the
cost of the manned mission
itself. Lansdorp and his team
currently rely on donations,
sponsorships, investments,
and even an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign.
The fact that potential
revenues from the media
are a Mars One mainstay
to financing its operations
is possibly among the most
eyebrow-raising aspects in
an already ambitious project
brief. Put simply, the four
colonists will be the subject
of 24-hour Big Brother style
surveillance, as their private
lives on Mars are broadcast
for all those on Earth to see.
Funding US$6 billion
for the first crew and US$4
billion for each crew that
follows isn’t child’s play.
And indeed, for Mars One
to put a lot of its eggs into
one basket — especially a
basket that blurs science and
entertainment so openly
— may not prove the most
effective or ethical way to

finance a hard return trip
to Mars.
“The greatest threat to
Mars One is economic,” says
Vakoch. “How can its founders
assure continued interest on
Earth? What happens if the
venture capitalists who send
the first generation of settlers
to Mars decide that further
investments can’t be justified?
Where will the ongoing
support come from?” And
chillingly, who might tell the
settlers on Mars if the show
gets cancelled?

THE ANNUAL
TEMPERATURE
ON MARS IS
BETWEEN A
HIGH OF 200C
TO A LOW OF
-1530C, WHICH
IS SOME 59.80C
COLDER THAN
THE LOWEST
RECORDED
TEMPERATURE
IN ANTARCTICA
The potential heroism of
pushing forward our frontiers
in space science is such that
we also have a tendency to
lose sight of the more human
dimensions to space travel.
Foreseeable problems of
colonising Mars are largely
directed at the technical and

1976
FACE OF MARS
IN JULY 1976, NASA’S VIKING 1 ORBITER CIRCLES THE PLANET, SNAPPING PHOTOGRAPHS OF PLAUSIBLE LANDING
SITES FOR A SPACECRAFT, WHEN A SHADOWY IMAGE REMINISCENT OF THE FACES ON MOUNT RUSHMORE
IS DISCOVERED. THE MEDIA CERTAINLY TAKE IT UP, SPAWNING AN ENTIRE POPULAR CULTURE AROUND IT.
HOWEVER, THE “FACE” IS LATER DISCOVERED TO BE NOTHING MORE THAN AN OPTICAL ILLUSION. WHEN NASA’S
MARS RECONNAISSANCE ORBITER UNMASKS THE “FACE” IN 2006, CROWDS OF CONSPIRACY THEORISTS ARE
DISAPPOINTED TO FIND OUT IT IS, IN FACT, A MASS OF ROCK SOME 243-METRES-HIGH WITH STEEP FLANKS AND
SOME TOPOGRAPHICAL CREASES

99
APRIL 2015

Before launch, candidates will need to carefully
consider their intentions for going to Mars and the
dynamics of working and living among his or her peers.
“Long duration crews may want to avoid conflicts
by voting an errant crewmate 'off the island' before
launch,” advises former NASA astronaut Tom Jones.
“You don’t want to take serious conflicts along a long
voyage. The baggage would drive you crazy.”
According to space psychology writer Douglas
Vakoch, Mars One should not be a “reboot” for
unsuccessful lives. Rather, it’s an opportunity for people
made of sterner stuff, who have done well on Earth, and
aren’t self-destructive, but who now want to take on
a greater challenge than they have ever faced before.
“Any baggage that astronauts leave behind will follow
them to another planet. There’s no room for social
misfits on Mars,” adds Vakoch.
That’s not to say that astronauts would be left bereft
of even a small glimmer of hope to survive. When you
go through thick and thin with someone every day,
sort of like living in a fraternity, you form relationships
and develop rapport to such an extent that living and
breathing at elbow’s length from your flatmates, was
to Jones, far from off-putting. “By launch day, we could
practically read each other’s minds,” he tells DCM.
Training for a year or more with his crewmates — or
eight years in the case of Mars One astronauts — will
dramatically and inherently reduce the risk of a Lord of
the Flies psychological fiasco. In fact, rather unexpected
results from Mars-500, a study that simulated living
on Mars, found that it was more likely that potential
settlers would be sleepy, irritable and extremely bored
from spending their days all cooped up.
Before we forget, rigorous selection criteria have
also been designed to weed out candidates with
the “wrong stuff”, thus pre-empting psychological
breakdowns. Traditionally, space agencies such as
NASA don’t only assess a candidate’s academic or
industrial accolades, but also his or her physical and
mental impeccability, which includes being free from a
history of severe psychiatric disorders, and even
marital problems.
Mars One is no exception to this battery of tests.
Aside from five key characteristics — resiliency,
adaptability, curiosity, ability to trust and creativity
or resourcefulness — used to pick the fantastic four,
candidates will also go through round after round of
interviews, assessments and exercises that will teach
them anything from medical and dental procedures, to
dealing with psychological situations such as isolation.
100
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

financial feasibility levels.
Yet issues can go beyond the
utilitarian, and can also likely
be psychological in nature.
The premise of Mars One,
with the Earth out of sight
and the everyday perils that
come with surviving Martian
conditions, present many
new frontiers in space travel
psychology for researchers
to mull over. Think for a
moment about an eternity
spent confined in a capsule
not much bigger than what
Tom Jones describes as “two
minivans stacked on top of the
other, with seats removed”.
How would that feel?
Mixed with a less resilient
mentality, the conditions
of danger, isolation and
confinement that a journey
to Mars might entail, could
prove a breeding ground
for loneliness, boredom
and depression, allowing
interpersonal conflict to
fester like a deadly bacterium.
After you’ve set about
launching into space on a
shuttle that carries the risk of
40 percent vehicular failure
and a flight failure of 1.5
percent, one can only then
begin to comprehend the kind
of helplessness you might feel
as you come to terms with the
prospect of never going home.
In the darkest sense, it’s not
unlike preparing for your own
funeral. Or at least, a funeral
for the life you had.
For former NASA
astronaut Tom Jones, these
feelings were exacerbated
when he parted with his
family, then couldn’t contact
them the moment he was
due to jet away. “I missed my
family and it was notably hard
to say goodbye to my kids
and not hug them because of
the medical quarantine we
worked under before launch,”
he tells DCM. “If that was
bad, then saying goodbye to
my wife was twice as hard.”
To cope with separation,
Jones maintained contact

with his family via email and a
weekly voice call, sometimes
with video. He recalls that his
wife and kids wrote him notes
and cards, and stowed them
away in the shuttle to surprise
him as he went into orbit.
“It was important for me
to receive emails daily from
my family and friends to feel
a sense of belonging — of not
being forgotten when I was
off the planet.” In perilous
times, communication
with ground control was
also critical for the crew to
maintain composure, he says.
When Jones and his teams
needed assistance on weather
conditions for landing,
they were able to receive
directions and help to ensure
their safety operations.
While not completely cut
off, communication from
Mars to Earth will take at
least 44 minutes. In dire
straits, 44 minutes can be a
matter of life and death. In a
fundamental sense, Mars One
astronauts will have to learn
that their emergency backup
lies with their own abilities.

TO INFINITY AND BEYOND

Mars One is a truly
international endeavour.
While the intention may
be to represent the human
race, this could also spell
interpersonal conflict, warns
psychologist Vakoch: “In the
best of circumstance, it can
be difficult to learn to live
with foreign customs and
values. In the worst, it could
be deadly.”
Ultimately though, while
dangers may be numerous,
our species has braved
numerous trials to get to
where we are today, a notion
that gives candidate Max
Fagin the belief that this can
work as well. “In light of all
the adversity that humans
have suffered and endured in
the past, I find it ridiculous
to think that a small group of
hand-picked individuals, with

PHOTOS NASA (MARS); COURTESY OF MAX FAGIN (SIDEBAR)

ARE YOU MARS ONE MATERIAL?

ONLY 68
DAY
If a group of MIT experts
are to be believed, the first
residents of Mars could be dead
within just 68 days. A feasibility study
of the Mars One plan was presented
to the 65th International Astronautical
Congress in Toronto in late 2014 by the
MIT team. Their reasons for the fatalistic
predictions? The space allocated for crops
isn’t big enough; more than twice as many
rocket journeys will be needed to keep
the base supplied than planned; and
malfunctioning equipment would
result in spare parts taking up
almost two-thirds of all cargo on
the future resupply missions
from Planet Earth.

SPACE

a decade of preparation and
training behind them, will be
unable to face conditions that
our ancestors had to face on a
daily basis,” he notes.
Mars One provides the
chance to reflect on where we
are as a species, and whether
science can or should help
us to evolve into a multiplanetary species. Despite the
fact that its volunteers would
set off willingly, the ethics
of sending human subjects
off our planet for their
foreseeable lifetime, could
ultimately be something we
give serious thought.

MARS ONE
IS BEING
DISMISSED
BY SCEPTICS
AS A SHEER
GIMMICK.
SCIENTIST,
NASA
ASTRONAUT
AND AUTHOR
TOM JONES
SAYS IT FEELS
LIKE NOTHING
MORE THAN A
PR STUNT

GIVEN THE ADVANCES IN
TECHNOLOGY, AND THE
INCREASING KNOWLEDGE
OF MARTIAN TERRITORY AND
TERRAIN, THE RACE TO VISIT,
AND EVEN COLONISE, THE
RED PLANET IS WELL AND
TRULY IN FULL SWING

And then there’s that
delirious prospect of actually
living extra-terrestrially, as
permanent residents of
Mars. Despite doubtless
hardships, the prospect does
provide us with a utopia
of a kind at least, and the
undeniable attraction of
the most alternative way of
life imaginable.
Even if Mars One turns
out to be unfeasible, the plan
reminds us to dream big
again. As Lansdorp himself
says, aside from expanding
the horizons of science, Mars
One offers something more
positive on the news than
crisis and war.
101
APRIL 2015

WHAT’S ON
THIS MONTH ON DISCOVERY CHANNEL

Strip The City
Strip The City uses stunning CGI animation to strip eight
iconic cities of their buildings, roads, rivers and bedrock
– layer by layer – to explore the secret technology and
infrastructure that keeps them running. What keeps
New York’s super tall skyscrapers standing during deadly
superstorms? How can Tokyo survive sitting on some of
the most seismically active rock on the planet? How did
the ancient Inca’s build a city high in the Andes without
modern technology? This series explores these and
other mysteries to expose the ingenious engineering
innovations that lie hidden beneath these cities.
THURSDAYS AT 9 PM, STARTING APRIL 16.

102
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WHAT'S ON

So You Think
You’d Survive
A hurricane is about to make landfall.
You’re behind the wheel of your car
when it gets trapped in floodwaters.
You are skiing and you’re caught in an
avalanche. You’re attacked by a swarm
of killer bees. So You Think You’d
Survive? In each, self-contained, hourlong episode, we’ll look at the choices
you have to make if mother nature
wreaks havoc. Hearing from survivors
of these disasters, this series gives the
audience a situation, an explanation
and a choice!
MONDAY TO FRIDAY AT 8 PM, STARTING APRIL 6

103
MARCH 2015

How
We Got
To Now
In How We Got
To Now, discover
the little known
innovators whose
wild ideas and
breakthroughs
made our modern
world possible.
This inspirational
and entertaining
series presented by
world-renowned
innovation expert
Steven Johnson
charts the twists
and turns of history,
science, business and
technology that have
brought us to where
we are today. With
an exciting blend
of location filming,
imaginative graphics
and stylish action
sequences, the series
untangles the web
of ideas that made
each of our ‘modern
miracles’ possible.
MONDAYS AT 9 PM,
STARTING APRIL 6

104
DISCOVERY CHANNEL MAGAZINE INDIA

WHAT'S ON

Chaos: Caught
On Camera
Chaos: Caught On Camera features user-generated
content and shows chaos of all kinds – from
catastrophic weather to the world’s worst manmade disasters; amazing tales of human endurance
and survival to disastrous engineering failures; and
incredible real-time footage of near-fatal accidents
to astonishing animal attacks. The heart-stopping
clips play for viewers as originally captured –
often in life-threatening situations – and are then
deconstructed using incredible facts and statistics
illustrated with stunning graphics that reveal the
amazing truth behind each unbelievable moment.
MONDAY TO FRIDAY AT 8 PM, STARTING APRIL 27

105
APRIL 2015

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