The Karate Kid Phenomenon

I recently saw a portion of the Karate Kid on TV, and I couldn’t help but think: I don’t remember all of these people being so young. Last time I saw this, I looked up to the main character. Now he seems like a child. 

Obviously, it has probably been at least a decade since I’ve seen the movie. But what phenomenon is this? Why would I perceive characters so differently? How could my age factor into my perception of others? 

Subconsciously, we must know our age relative to those we see. Because while we change, college kids stay the same age. What changes is us, and the people that are in college, but the age of the people in college stays the same. Therefore the change is not them, it’s us. In our perception of ourselves.

Perhaps, we always compare others to ourselves. Looking for those subtle and not-so-subtle signs of aging. And as we age, we see less of those signs in those younger than us. So as we accept the slow progression of these negative attributes of our own beauty, we cannot help but notice the lack of these attributes in those younger than us. As we accept those as part of our reality, we notice that these attributes are not part of those realities of those younger than us.

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A simplified sketch of comparing flaws. Normalization is the adaptation. And the numbers at the bottom are the perceived difference in age.

Our perception of ourselves is the zero point. Every time we look in the mirror, we are different. We change slowly over the course of our lives. We age. And we adapt to each new perception of ourselves.

You’ve heard the story of the frog being boiled alive. By slowly increasing the temperature, the frog never notices the change.  I think this story closely parallels this psychological mechanism. We are not aware of the change in us, because our aging is the combination of many small changes over a long period of time.

Not blinking is the cure to cancer

Warning: this is a long post. Remember to think critically and with an open mind.

I’ve alluded to the fact that cancer is going to always be incurable, so there is no reason to waste time searching for a cure. Cells have to die eventually right? But think with me for a minute.

How many active professional athletes have gotten cancer? Almost none, percentage wise.

If your brain controls your perception of time, and you control your mind is it possible to slow down time and aging to a point where you could live a long and happy life with cancer in your body? I think the answer is yes.

So what do we know about cancer?

Cancer ebbs and flows. Sometimes people go into remission and then it shows up again. We have no idea why.

We can stabilize the disease. I think this is the goal. So what if you have a little cancer in a sliver of one organ. As long as it stays put, you don’t die.

Chemo is terrifying. We’re administering chemicals to stop cell division. All cell division. The list of side effects is as long as it is scary. But we’re talking about weighing life and death here,  it’s worth it.

It’s a disease for old people. I know that you always hear about the kids with cancer, but check out this graphic:

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People have lived long and healthy lives with cancer. Find your own examples.

Yes. Chemo has its benefits. It’s savage but we want to live.

There’s obviously surgery. We cut you open, and cut out the cancer, and sew you back up. Hopefully, the cancer is done spreading and we got it all out.

There’s also radiation. This is the use of X-rays to slow the process of tumors. There’s as much info about this as you could ever want. But it really doesn’t reverse anything. It just slows the natural process.

Wait. If we slow time for individuals, we could slow the progress of cancer. If we stop aging, we stop cancer.

Here’s the issue: cancer is a result of aging. The side effects of chemo and radiation-depression, anxiety, weight-loss- cause mental strain and accelerate the aging process. Look at the physical and emotional toll that these procedures and treatments take on the human body.

So if our goal is to slow the cancer by slowing the body’s perception of time, what should we do? I’m no oncologist. But there were probably some things that you were doing already that were shifting your perception of time without you even knowing it.

Ok. What do we know? We know that aging starts in the brain. We know that cardio athletes seem to age much slower. We know that caffeine alters the perception of time and changes the aging process. Glasses do similar things to the brain. Read How to age like white people.

Check out this study. Blink rate was tied to the results of an IQ test. Scientists tied blink rate to mental strain in 1927. You read that right. 1927. That’s over 90 years ago. How in the world does this apply to cancer? Bear with me.

So what do we know about blinking?

It definitely slows down when you’re reading. Like typically to less than 5 blinks per minute.

It speeds up in conversation a good deal. It makes sense, though. It take a lot more brain power to hold an intelligent conversation than it does to read a book.

Diseases associated with dopamine alter blink rates. There is clearly a relation here to brain function.

Infants only blink one or two times per minute. This increases throughout childhood, and by adolescence, it’s usually similar to that of adults. This is in the delta brain state where there is the least amount of mental strain.

Our perception of time accelerates as we age. We’re aging seven times faster than infants because of the mental strain in our lives. [Growing does not mean aging.]

You know what else happens in the years from 0-7? You learn. A lot. The brain is being programmed and looks like it’s in a state of meditation compared to adults.

Blinks are important in diagnosing some medical conditions. Too much blinking can be a risk factor for Tourette syndrome, strokes, or other nervous system disorders.

People with Parkinson’s blink less. On the surface, this makes zero sense. There is also a subgroup of Parkinson’s sufferers who blink more often, so let’s call it a wash. The theory would be that this has no idea with the perception of time, but the nature of the disease attacks the portions of the brain controlling this type of action. 

So blink rates are our barometer. I think “brainbeats” would be similar as discussed in a different post. Our blink rates reflect our perception of time. [This does not account for other factors like dry eyes.] Even with dry eyes, a reduced blink rate would be a good thing. The perception of time would have slowed. Mental Strain has been reduced.

Look at Kevin Durant. Have you ever seen the man blink? Has he aged a minute since he turned 17? Athletes, blink less.  Just think about it. Especially the sports that require the most focus and precision.

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So if you blink less, you age less. [Holding your eyes open doesn’t count] And as anything else, this is going to vary throughout the day. What we’re talking about here is resting blink rate.

So here’s what I’m saying: cancer is a disease for old people. Blinking is your cue for your personal time perception. Slow down time and live longer and happier. Slow down time by reducing mental strain. Control what you can and fight cancer by fighting the aging process.

If you’re wondering how to reduce mental strain, here’s a great place to start.