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NoME Part One: Chapter 1: Session 802, April 25, 1977 9/63 (14%) epidemics disease plagues inoculation die
– The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events
– Part One: The Events of “Nature.” Epidemics and Natural Disasters
– Chapter 1: The Natural Body and Its Defenses
– Session 802, April 25, 1977 9:47 P.M. Monday

[... 3 paragraphs ...]

Dictation: (Pause, one of many.) Now: To a certain extent (underlined), epidemics are the result of a mass suicide phenomenon on the parts of those involved. Biological, sociological, or even economic factors may be involved, in that for a variety of reasons, and at different levels, whole groups of individuals want to die at any given time — but in such a way that their individual deaths amount to a mass statement.

[... 8 paragraphs ...]

Now if you believe in one life only, then such conditions will seem most disastrous, and in your terms they clearly are not pretty. Yet, though each victim in an epidemic may die his or her own death, that death becomes part of a mass social protest. The lives of intimate survivors are shaken, and according to the extent of the epidemic the various elements of social life itself are disturbed, altered, rearranged. Sometimes such epidemics are eventually responsible for the overthrow of governments, the loss of wars.

[... 1 paragraph ...]

The epidemics then serve many purposes — warning that certain conditions will not be tolerated. There is a biological outrage that will be continually expressed until the conditions are changed.

[... 1 paragraph ...]

The sight of the dying gave them visions of the meaning of life, and stirred new [ideas] of sociological, political, and spiritual natures, so that in your terms the dead did not die in vain. Epidemics by their public nature speak of public problems — problems that sociologically threaten to sweep the individual to psychic disaster as the physical materialization does biologically.

(Pause.) These are the reasons also for the range or the limits of various epidemics — why they sweep through one area and leave another clear. Why one in the family will die and another survive — for in this mass venture, the individual still forms his or her private reality.

[... 17 paragraphs ...]

They do not “worry.” They do not anticipate disaster when no signs of it are apparent in their immediate environment. On their own they do not need preventative medicine. Pet animals are inoculated against diseases, however. In your society this almost becomes a necessity. In a “purely natural” setting you would not have as many living puppies or kittens. There are stages of physical existence, and in those terms nature knows what it is doing. When a species overproduces, the incidences of, say, epidemics grow. This applies to human populations as well as to the animals.

[... 2 paragraphs ...]

There are also “trial runs” in human and animal species alike, in which peeks are taken, or glimpses, of physical life, and that is all. Epidemics sweeping through animal populations are also biological and psychic statements, then, in which each individual knows that only its own greatest fulfillment can satisfy the quality of life on an individual basis, and thus contribute to the mass survival of the species.

[... 2 paragraphs ...]

Many children, who, it seems, should have died of disease, of “childhood epidemics,” nevertheless survive because of their different intents. The world of thought and feeling may be invisible, and yet it activates all physical systems with which you are acquainted.

[... 1 paragraph ...]

Love involves self-respect, the trust in individual biological zest and integrity. To that extent, in their way animal epidemics have the same causes as human ones.

[... 18 paragraphs ...]

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