July 7, 2008
Thai spirits a topic at Buddhist forum
Contractions to canonical texts abound in Thai Buddhist practices, said Justin McDaniel, of the University of California, Riverside. His campus talk was among dozens held during the XVth Congress of the International Association of Buddhist Studies.
He recounted the legend of Thailand’s most famous ghost, Mae Nak, who died of heartbreak when her soldier husband was wounded. Her husband survived, however, and Mae Nak reappeared.
At numerous shrines to Mae Nak, devotees come to seek luck in love and the lottery. “Asking ghosts that are murderous, angry and bitter to stay around and help you win the lottery doesn’t seem to make any sense,” McDaniel said, noting that Mae Nak is just one ghost in a pantheon of inauspicious Thai spirits called on for such assistance.
— Carol Clark
Millennials ‘expect to be connected’
Those who want to communicate with Emory students would do well to keep in mind the defining characteristics of the millennial generation, said marketing manager Paula Londe at a recent workshop for campus communicators.
Millennials, the second largest generation after baby boomers, represent a major shift in worldview, said Londe. “They expect to be connected.”
As the first generation to grow up with the Internet, millennials like to manipulate and share their own content, said Londe. “They expect to help shape their own experience. They also like ratings sites, where they can share information and take action quickly, which is a hallmark of today’s ‘smart mobs.’”
— Elaine Justice
The state of heart health, treatment
You didn’t have to be on heart medication to benefit from a June 27 question-and-answer session with cardiologist William H. Smiley III, who discussed major drug treatments and trends in the field.
Currently, the profession is looking for a better drug for a specific type of clotting, Smiley said.
The assistant professor of cardiology also praised the drive to remove trans fats, which “drive good cholesterol down,” from processed foods.
And metronome-like devices — currently being widely advertised — can positively impact blood pressure. “It puts you in a quiet space and gets your breathing rate down,” he said.
— Leslie King