Definition, Purpose, and the Study of Religion

Definition, Purpose, and the Study of Religion

The Study of Religion

Religious studies, also known as the study of religion, is an academic field devoted to research into religious beliefs, behaviors, and institutions. It describes, compares, interprets, and explains religion, emphasizing systematic, historically based, and cross-cultural perspectives.

While theology attempts to understand the nature of transcendent or supernatural forces (such as deities), religious studies try to study religious behavior and belief from outside any particular religious viewpoint. Religious studies draw upon multiple disciplines and their methodologies including anthropology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, and history of religion.

Religious studies originated in the 19th century. At that time, the scholarly and historical analysis of the Bible had flourished, and Hindu and Buddhist texts were first being translated into European languages. Early influential scholars included Friedrich Max Müller in England and Cornelius P. Tiele in the Netherlands. Today religious studies are practiced by scholars worldwide. In its early years, it was known as “comparative religion” or the science of religion and, in the USA, there are those who today also know the field as the History of religion (associated with methodological traditions traced to the University of Chicago in general and in particular Mircea Eliade, from the late 1950s through to the late 1980s).

The religious studies scholar Walter Capps described the purpose of the discipline as to provide “training and practice… in directing and conducting inquiry regarding the subject of religion”. At the same time, Capps stated that its other purpose was to use “prescribed modes and techniques of inquiry to make the subject of religion intelligible.” Religious studies scholar Robert A. Segal characterized the discipline as “a subject matter” that is “open to many approaches”, and thus it “does not require either a distinctive method or a distinctive explanation to be worthy of disciplinary status.”

Different scholars operating in the field have different interests and intentions; some for instance seek to defend religion, while others seek to explain it away, and others wish to use religion as an example with which to prove a theory of their own. Some scholars of religious studies are interested in primarily studying the religion to which they belong.

In the study of religion, scholars of religion have argued that a study of the subject is useful for individuals. This is because it will provide them with the knowledge that is pertinent in inter-personal and professional contexts within an increasingly globalized world. It has also been argued that studying religion is useful in appreciating and understanding sectarian tensions and religious violence.

Definition of religion

Throughout the history of religious studies, there have been many attempts to define the term “religion” just like philosophy. Many of these have been monothetic, seeking to determine a key, essential element which all religions share, which can be used to define “religion” as a category, and which must be necessary in order for something to be classified as a “religion”.

Etymologically, The term “religion” could be traced to three ancient Greek words: Religare, Ligare, and Religere which means, to bind, to unite, and relationship. Religion is seen and understood in many ways by many different religious secs.

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There are two forms of monothetic definition; the first is substantive, seeking to identify a specific core as being at the heart of religion, such as a belief in a God or gods, or an emphasis on power. The second is functional, seeking to define “religion” in terms of what it does for humans, for instance defining it by the argument that it exists to assuage the fear of death, unite a community, or reinforce the control of one group over another. Other forms of definition are polythetic, producing a list of characteristics that are common to religion. In this definition there is no one characteristic that needs to be common in every form of religion.

Causing further complications is the fact that there are various secular world views, such as nationalism and Marxism, which bear many of the same characteristics that are commonly associated with religion, but which rarely consider themselves to be religious.

Conversely, other scholars of religious studies have argued that the discipline should reject the term “religion” altogether and cease trying to define it. In this perspective, “religion” is argued to be a Western concept that has been forced upon other cultures in an act of intellectual imperialism. According to scholar of religion Russell T. McCutcheon, “many of the peoples that we study by means of this category have no equivalent term or concept at all”. There is, for instance, no word for “religion” in languages like Sanskrit.

Purposes of Religious Education

The study of Religious Education makes a distinctive contribution to the school curriculum by developing pupils’ knowledge and understanding of religion, religious beliefs, practices, language and traditions, and their influence on individuals, communities, societies, and cultures. It enables pupils to consider and respond to a range of important questions related to their own spiritual development, the development of values and attitudes, and fundamental questions concerning the meaning and purpose of life.

Religious Education is an essential component of a broad and balanced education.

Religious Education is concerned with the deep meaning that individuals and groups make of their experiences and how this helps them give purpose to their lives. It provides opportunities to explore, make, and respond to the meanings of those experiences in relation to the beliefs and experiences of others as well as to one’s own experiences.

Along with the other subjects, Religious Education aims:
  • To provide opportunities for all pupils to learn and to achieve.
  • To promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development and to prepare all pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities, and experiences of the present and the future. The Sandwell Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education has four purposes, which are parallel to the four main purposes of the National Curriculum.
  • To establish an entitlement. The Agreed Syllabus secures for all pupils, irrespective of social background, culture, race, religion, gender, differences in ability and disabilities, and entitlement to learning in Religious Education. This contributes to their developing knowledge, understanding, skills, and attitudes, which are necessary for their personal fulfillment and development as active and responsible citizens.
  • To establish standards. The Agreed Syllabus makes expectations for learning and attainment explicit to pupils, parents, teachers, governors, employers, and the public, and establishes standards for the performance of all pupils in Religious Education. These standards may be used to set targets for improvement and measure progress towards those targets.
  • To promote continuity and coherence. The Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education contributes to a coherent curriculum that promotes continuity. It facilitates the transition of pupils between schools and phases of education. And, it can provide foundations for further study and lifelong learning.
  • To promote public understanding. The Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education will increase public understanding of, and confidence in, the work of schools in RE. Through the SACRE, the religious communities of Sandwell have been involved in its development. This is part of the mission of Sandwell SACRE.

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Third World and Dependency

Third World and Dependency

Third World and Dependency refers to the less developed countries and their dependency on the developed (First World) for advanced living. In order to broadly categorize the nations of the Earth based on political and economic divisions, there is a hierarchical categorization of the nations into three; the First World, Second World, and the Third World. The term “Third World” is used less and less in the contemporary time. Thus, the term has been replaced with terms such as ‘least developed countries, developing countries, less civilized countries, or the Global South. However, it will not be mistaken to say the term has been outdated most recently.

Because many Third World countries were economically poor and non-industrialized, it became a stereotype to refer to poor countries as “third world countries”, especially African countries. Nigeria, as one of the Third World Countries, is the center of this discourse. However, this article focuses on the following issues:

Content:

  1. Introduction to Third World Countries.
  2. Globalization and Free Trade.
  3. Reasons why Globalization and Free Trade have not been favorable to Third World countries especially Nigeria’s political and economic development.
  4. Reasons why Modernization, Westernization, including the adoption of a free-market economy have not developed Nigeria to the level of America or any of the Asian tiger countries.
  5. Effective suggestions of the economic system that would be suitable for a Third World country as Nigeria.

Meaning of Globalization and Free Trade

Globalization is a historical process involving a fundamental shift or transformation in the spatial scale of human social organization that links distant communities and expanded the reach of power relations across regions and continents. The keyword of note is that globalization is linked to liberalization, modernization, and universalization.

  1. Globalization is a transformational process.
  2. Globalization creates an awareness of cultural similarities and differences.
  3. Globalization leads to greater efficiency in the use of capital and other factors of production etc.

Free trade, on the other hand, is a theoretical policy under which governments impose absolutely no tariffs, taxes, or duties on Imports, or quotas on Exports. In this sense, free trade is the opposite of protectionism, a defensive trade policy intended to eliminate the possibility of foreign competition.

Reasons Why Globalization and Free Trade have not been Favorable to the Third World Countries, especially Nigeria.

The third world dependence on foreign trade links and on the monopoly of capital of the industrialized world has produced, among other things endemic economic consequences.

Firstly, the international economic system, free and unfair trade, has rendered third world economies as chronic victims of adverse balance of trade and payments. For example, the price of primary products such as cocoa, palm produce, peanuts (groundnuts), cotton, etc. from Africa, have been subjected to evident price falls while the prices of goods manufactured in the advanced industrialized countries of western Nations appreciate from year to year in the prices they sale finished products emanation from their industries.

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Capitalism as a western economy force with its agents; the multinational corporations, international monetary fund (IMF), and the world bank have blurred the lines of economic vision of African Nations, particularly, the newly independent sovereign states. They have been forced directly or indirectly into the dependency syndrome mentality.

As a consequence of the capitalist mode of production, which third world Nations have been lured to embrace as a colonial legacy, concentrate the means of production, distribution and exchange in the hands of a privileged few. Western Nations and their agents; multinational corporations making it difficult if not impossible for third World Nations to compete with western capitalist Nations in the highly competitive global market.

Nigeria and other third world economies are rich in agricultural land and in mineral deposits such as oil and gas but developed nations of the west through their multinational corporation extract and refines most of these mineral resources with their own advanced technology.

Furthermore, the third world Nation’s problem has, thus, become how to generate capital for their individual national development and to use such to develop their own nature-endowed resources.

Third world nations, therefore, produce what they do not consume, and consume what they do not produce. This situation destroys the local growth of industries and denies the people of the opportunity to develop their own indigenous processing techniques.

In summary, increasing dependence on foreign investment and capital especially at the level of unprecedented proportion can only delay Third World Nation’s chance of political and economic development.

Explanation to why modernization, westernization, including the adoption of free market economy have not developed Nigeria to the level of America or any of the Asian tiger countries.

The term modernization refers to the process whereby societies or social institutions change or move from traditional or less developed ones into the types of technologies and associated social organizations that characterize the advanced, economically prosperous, and politically stable Nations of the western world.

Reasons, why modernization, westernization and free-market economy have not developed Nigeria to the level of America or any other Asian countries, are as follows:

The task of developing a society lies in the hand of individuals whether leaders or followers

In his strong position, Hag(1973:110) states that: “ citizens of developing Nations should be blamed for much of the present mess of underdevelopment. Myles(2000) believes that the position of one’s underdevelopment is a result of the darkness of vision, ignorance, and blind to God’s principle.

In Nigeria, for instance, the proceeds from the oil boom of the 1970s have made our leaders not see other material resources to exploit like gold, tin, zinc, lead, salt, coal, etc. These, if properly explored and harnessed, would have stabilized Nigeria’s economy rather than crude oil.

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The second factor is ethnicity problem

Ethnicity is an enemy of growth, progress, and development. “The major single obstacle to development in Africa is tribalism.”

The colonial authorities did not consider the ethnic boundaries when they shared Africa to themselves. This ignorance is wholly responsible for ethnic, tribal, and international wars in Africa and the third world countries today.

In Nigeria, a bloody civil war was fought for three good years (Nigeria and Biafran Civil War) between Joly 1967 and 15th January 1970. It is not different in other African nations. Countries like Congo, Liberia, Angola, etc.  It has rendered many people homeless and has made many refugees even in their countries of abundance.

Leadership Succession

Nigeria and other third world nations are blessed with abundant human and material resources. It may be useful to argue that the inability of the leaders of these countries to make proper use of these resources has been responsible for her unstable socio-economic, educational, and political systems.

Most of the leaders of the third world Nations are power-drunk and never believe that the grace of God in others can enable them to lead even better than them. The power of incumbency is a political disease.

Unstable Political System

This is mostly an endemic feature that characterizes most of the Nations that are classified as third world. The military in African countries and other third world Nations have abandoned their traditional function of defending the territorial integrity of their countries and picked up administrative functions. They fear not the civilians who own in totality the administration.

Effective Suggestion of an Economic System Suitable for a Third World Country like Nigeria

An economic system that will be suitable for a third world country like Nigeria is a mixed economy. A mixed economy where both the government and private individuals can engage in the production of goods and services. The type of economic system gives room for individuals to exhibit their talents and skills thereby earning income for themselves and also contributing to the growth of the Nation’s economy.

Just as America, the major source of their economic growth and employment is a private business. If Nigeria adopts this mixed economy, there will be employment opportunities as these private industries will employ people who will help in the production of goods and services. This system allows both the government and the private individuals access to ownership of properties and industries.

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Human Histology of the Bone

Human Histology of the Bone

Introduction

Bone is a mineralized connective tissue that exhibits four types of cells: osteoclasts, bone lining cells, osteocytes, and osteoclasts. Bone exerts important functions in the body, such as locomotion, support, and protection of soft tissues, calcium and phosphate storage, and harboring of bone marrow. Despite its inert appearance, bone is a highly dynamic organ that is continuously reabsorbed by osteoclasts and reformed by osteoblasts. There is evidence that osteocytes act as mechanosensors and orchestrators of this bone remodeling process. This is introduction to the histology of the bone.

The function of bone lining cells is not well clear, but these cells seem to play an important role in coupling bone resorption to bone formation. Bone remodeling is a highly complex process by which old bone is replaced by new bone, in a cycle comprised of three phases:

  1. Initiation of bone resorption by osteoclasts,
  2. The transition (or reversal period) from resorption to new bone formation, and
  3. The bone formation by osteoblasts.

This process occurs due to coordinated actions of osteoclasts, osteoblasts, osteocytes, and bone lining cells which together, form the temporary anatomical structure called basic multicellular unit (BMU). Normal bone remodeling is necessary for fracture healing and skeleton adaptation to mechanical use, as well as for calcium homeostasis.

On the other hand, an imbalance of bone resorption and formation results in several bone diseases. For example, excessive resorption by osteoclasts without the corresponding amount of nerformed bone by osteoblasts contributes to bone loss and osteoporosis, whereas the contrary may result in osteopetrosis.

Recent studies have shown that bone influences the activity of other organs and the bone is also influenced by other organs and systems of the body, providing new insights and evidencing the complexity and dynamic nature of bone tissue. In this review we will address the current data about bone cells biology, bone matrix, and the factors that influence the bone remodeling process. Moreover, we will briefly discuss the role of estrogen on bone tissue under physiological and pathological conditions.

HIstology of Human bone.. structure, shapes, forms , types, functions
Shapes of Bones

Bone Cells

Osteoblasts

Osteoblasts are cuboidal cells that are located along the bone surface comprising 4–6% of the total resident bone cells and are largely known for their bone-forming function. These cells show morphological characteristics of protein-synthesizing cells, including abundant rough endoplasmic reticulum and prominent Golgi apparatus, as well as various secretory vesicles. As polarized cells, the osteoblasts secrete the osteoid toward the bone matrix. Osteoblasts are derived from mesenchymal stem cells (MSC).

The commitment of MSC towards the osteoprogenitor lineage requires the expression of specific genes, following timely programmed steps, including the synthesis of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) and members of the Wingless (Wnt) pathways. The expressions of Runt related transcription factors 2, Distal-less home box 5 (Dlx5), and osterix (Osx) are crucial for osteoblast differentiation.

Additionally, Runx2 is a master gene of osteoblast differentiation, as demonstrated by the fact that Runx2-null mice are devoid of osteoblasts. Runx2 has demonstrated to upregulate osteoblast-related genes such as ColIA1, ALP, BSP, BGLAP, and OCN. Once a pool of osteoblast progenitors expressing Runx2and ColIA1 has been established during osteoblast differentiation, there is a proliferation phase.

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In this phase, osteoblast progenitors show alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and are considered preosteoblasts. There is evidence that other factors such as fibroblast growth factor (FGF), microRNAs, and connexin 43 play important roles in osteoblast differentiation. FGF-2knockoutmice showed a decreased bone mass coupled to an increase of adipocytes in the bone marrow, indicating the participation of FGFs in the osteoblast differentiation. It has also been demonstrated that FGF-18 upregulates osteoblast differentiation in an autocrine mechanism.

MicroRNAs are involved in the regulation of gene expression in many cell types, including osteoblasts, in which some microRNAs stimulate and others inhibit osteoblast differentiation. Connexin 43 is known to be the main connexin in bone. The mutation in the gene encoding connexin 43 impairs osteoblast differentiation and causes skeletal malformation in mice. The synthesis of bone matrix by osteoblasts occurs in two main steps: deposition of organic matrix and its subsequent mineralization.

In the first step, the osteoblasts secrete collagen proteins, mainly type I collagen, noncollagenous proteins (OCN, osteonectin, BSP II, and osteopontin), and proteoglycan including decorin and biglycan, which form the organic matrix. Thereafter, mineralization of bone matrix takes place into two phases: the vesicular and the fibrillar phases. The vesicular phase occurs when portions with a variable diameter ranging from 30 to 200 nm, called matrix vesicles, are released from the apical membrane domain of the osteoblasts into the newly formed bone matrix in which they bind to proteoglycans and other organic components.

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Because of its negative charge, the sulfated proteoglycans immobilize calcium ions that are stored within the matrix vesicles. When osteoblasts secrete enzymes that degrade the proteoglycans, the calcium ions are released from the proteoglycans and cross the calcium channels presented in the matrix vesicle membrane. These channels are formed by proteins called annexins. On the other hand, phosphate-containing compounds are degraded by the ALP secreted by osteoblasts, releasing phosphate ions inside the matrix vesicles. Then, the phosphate and calcium ions inside the vesicles nucleate, forming the hydroxyapatite crystals.

The fibrillar phase occurs when the supersaturation of calcium and phosphate ions inside the matrix vesicles leads to the rupture of these structures and the hydroxyapatite crystals spread to the surrounding matrix. Mature osteoblasts appear as a single layer of cuboidal cells containing abundant rough endoplasmic reticulum and large Golgi complex. Some of these osteoblasts show cytoplasmic processes towards the bone matrix and reach the osteocyte processes. At this stage, the mature osteoblasts can undergo apoptosis or become osteocytes or bone lining cells.

Interestingly, round/ovoid structures containing dense bodies and TUNEL-positive structures have been observed inside osteoblast vacuoles. These findings suggest that besides professional phagocytes, osteoblasts are also able to engulf and degrade apoptotic bodies during alveolar bone formation. Bone Lining Cells. Bone lining cells are quiescent flat-shaped osteoblasts that cover the bone surfaces, where neither bone resorption nor bone formation occurs.

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These cells exhibit a thin and flat nuclear profile; its cytoplasm extends along the bone surface and displays few cytoplasmic organelles such as profiles of rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus. Some of these cells show processes extending into canaliculi, and gap junctions are also observed between adjacent bone lining cells and between these cells and osteocytes.

The secretory activity of bone lining cells depends on the bone physiological status, whereby these cells can reacquire their secretory activity, enhancing their size, and adopting a cuboidal appearance. Bone lining cells functions are not completely understood, but it has been shown that these cells prevent the direct interaction between osteoclasts and bone matrix, when bone resorption should not occur, and also participate in osteoclast differentiation, producing osteoprotegerin (OPG) and the receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand (RANKL).

Moreover, the bone lining cells, together with other bone cells, are an important component of the BMU, an anatomical structure that is present during the bone remodeling cycle.

Types of Cartilage

  1. Hyaline Cartilage:
  2. Elastic cartilage
  3. Fibrocartilage

Hyaline Cartilage

They have identical form, covered by Perichondrium. They are Matrix formed by the Chondrocyte, the matrix is subdivided into two types:- Territorial and Interterritorial.

This is similar to hyaline cartilage. The matrix contain more elastic fibers as well as elastic fibers as well as type II collagen fibers.

Fibro-cartilage

This is different from Hyaline or Elastic. The chondrocytes are differentiated from fibrocytes.

Cartilage Growth

Cartilage grows by two different processes: Interstitial growth and Appositional growth

a. Interstitial growth: This involves the division of existing chondrocytes. It is important in the formation of the fetal skeleton and continues in the epiphyseal plates and articular cartilages.

b. Appositional growth: This involves the differentiation of chondroblasts and stem cells on the inner surface of the perichondrium into chondrocytes. It is responsible for increasing the girth of the cartilage masses.

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Bone

The Bone tissue is rich in blood supply. It is a type of connective tissue with calcified matrix.

Functions

  1. It supports and protects
  2. Has Bone marrow.
  3. It is an important storage site for calcium and other essential minerals.

Surfaces

  1. The outer surfaces
  2. Sharpey’s fibers
  3. The internal surfaces of bones are covered by a thin, condensed reticular connective tissue (endosteum) that contain bone (endosteum) that contains bone and blood, cell precursors.
  4. The endosteum lines the marrow cavity and sends extensions into the haversian canals.

Components of Bone:

Osteogeneic cells, Osteoblasts, Osteocytes, Osteoclasts. Organic and non-organic collagen type I fibers.

Osteogenic (Osteoprogenitor) cells

  • Mesenchymal stem cells, Small spindle-shaped cells with pale cytoplasm and ovoid nuclei.
  • Osteoblast precursors have sparse RER and Golgi complexes.
  • Osteoclast precursors have abundant free ribosomes and mitochondria.

Osteoblasts:

Found in the periosteum and endosteum. They have large rounded or cuboidal cells, with deep basophilic cytoplasm, with deep basophilic cytoplasm, well-developed RER and Golgi; and eccentric nucleus. They synthesize and secrete organic components. Osteoblasts mature and are called osteocytes.

Osteocytes

Theirs Cells are branched, smaller than osteoblasts, and not divide. They found in cavities in the bone matrix called lacunae. Processes (branches) extend into canaliculi in the calcified matrix. The cells are isolated. They Contact one another through gap junctions. Located near bone surfaces. They maintain bone matrix. The death of osteocytes results in bone resorption.

Osteoclasts

They lie on bony surfaces in Hawship’s lacunae. Have Large multinucleated cells. Acidophilic, cytoplasm containing abundant lysosomes and Acidophilic cytoplasm containing abundant lysosomes and mitochondria and well developed Golgi complex; and brush border of plasma-membrane facing the bone marrow.  Cells release acid, collagenase, and in other lytic enzymes into the compartments; these break down bone matrix and release minerals, a process called bone resorption, Ossification (Bone formation). The bone is formed from mesenchymal embryonic tissue by two ways:

  1. Intra-membranous ossification
  2. Endochondral ossification

Intra-Membranous Ossification:

Ossification center in the form of increased vascularity, condensation of mesenchymal cells. The mesenchymal cells osteogenic cells. The osteogenic cells differentiate into osteoblasts; which synthesize the organic component of bone matrix (collagen, glycoprotein). The osteoblasts secrete an enzyme which stimulates calcium salts to the calcified matrix. The bone matrix grows in the membrane, vascular tissues differentiate into hematopoietic tissue (bone marrow). A layer of vascular mesenchyme forming periosteum.  The osteogenic stem cells in the periosteum differentiate to osteoblasts, which start to lay down or arrange bone lamellae (compact bone).

Endochondral Ossification:

  • Cartilage model: The embryonic mesenchymal cells -condensed. It is differentiated from chondroblasts, chondrocytes, and cartilage matrix.
  • Primary centers of ossification: Some changes have been developed. The Chondrocytes in the middle of the cartilage model enlarged, and calcium salts become to deposit around the lacunae. Chondrocytes die due to the prevention of nutrient diffusion through the calcified matrix, leaving empty spaces.
  • The perichondrium becomes highly vascular and active and changed to the periosteum, where the inner vascular osteogenic cells differentiate to osteoblasts.
  • The osteoblasts start to lay down a collar of compact bone around the shaft called sub-periosteal collar of bone.
  • The periosteum forms a periosteal bud, which is consists of capillaries, osteoclasts, and osteoblasts.
  • The vascular bud invades the subperiosteal bone by osteoclasts.
  • The thin wall of the empty lacunae is broken down.
  • The thin wall of the empty lacunae is broken down forming the primary bone marrow cavity.
  • As the periosteal bud invades bone and cartilage, the osteoblasts arrange themselves along the marrow spaces and start to lay down bone matrix
  • Marrow spaces joint together forming a central regular cavity in the middle of diaphysis.
  • The microscopic structure of the developing endochondral bones is characterized by 5 overlapping zones:
    • The zone of resting cartilage is composed of typical hyaline cartilage and is farthest from the primary marrow cavity.
    • The zone of proliferation contains columns of flattened chondrocytes.
    • In the zone of hypertrophy, the chondrocytes in the columns are enlarged and rounded.
    • The zone of calcification is characterized by a more basophilic matrix. There is often a significant overlap between zones 3 and 4, which are sometimes referred to as a single zone of hypertrophy and calcification.
    • The zone of ossification borders directly on the primary marrow cavity. It is characterized by intensely acidophilic osteoid, osteocytes within the bone matrix, and a monolayer of basophilic osteoblasts.

K. Matsuo and N. Irie, “Osteoclast-osteoblast communication,” Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, vol. 473, no. 2, pp. 2

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NYSC takes new shape as Corp members start online Orientation Courses

NYSC takes new shape as Corp members start online Orientation Courses

Following the global outbreak of the deadly corona virus, which has threatened the Iives of people in the world including our beloved country Nigeria. On the 18th March 2020, there was a general order for the lock down of all NYSC Orientation camp across the Nation. It was not so happy a thing to the Batch A Stream 1 corps members who were asked to vacate the camp immediately. Although they corps members were posted to their various place of primary assignment, the measures taken was to help limit the possible avenue for the spread of the virus.

As the third line in the first stanza of the NYSC anthem quotes “Under the sun or in the rain”. The Platoon 6 Batch A stream 1 corps members deployed to Nasarawa State have continued their Orientation course in another form. They have fortified its WhatsApp platform with Guiding Principles to help bring discipline and sanity amongst them. They have an Outline of Programs that runs for 9hours daily. All these are of the vision to help build up their Human Capacity  towards Nation’s building.

In an interview with the Platoon leader, in the person of Franklyn Nwosu, who is a Philosophy graduate from the prestigious Claretian Institute of Philosophy Nekede, Owerri, Imo State. He said the platoon has its motto as “We are the best to serve Nigeria” and have promised to lead the Platoon to the actualization of this both in camp and outside the camp for the Nation building.

In his words of acknowledgement, he thanked the President of the  Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammad Buhari, the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State Engr. Abdullahi Sule, the Minister of Youth & Sports Mr. Stanley Dare, the Director General of the NYSC Brig. Gen. S. Ibrahim, the Nasarawa State NYSC Coordinator Mr. Stephen Gabriel Dewan, The NYSC Keffi Camp Director Mr. Tomori Olabode Felix and all NYSC staff.

He appreciated the esteem efforts of the Nasarawa NYSC state coordinator, the camp Director and the platoon 6 officers whose morning advise & admonishment helped strengthen them to undertake this tax.

He went further to say that the corona virus will never be a barrier for corps members to serve their fatherland, Nigeria.

The Platoon Program manager, Diogu Coda a graduate of Criminology/Psychology from Nasarawa State University spoke to us in an explanation on how the platoon has been undergoing the Online Orientation Courses which are inline with the NYSC SCHEME since 23rd March 2020. In his Explanations he said;

1. Business Monday

The business Monday is an opportunity created for the members of the platoon who have legit businesses doing to advertise their products or business and make presentations for people to patronize or make referrals. The aim of this program is to help boost and patronize our various handworks.

2. Tuesday Entrepreneurship Workshop

This program is held every Tuesday, and is anchored or moderated by the corps members who have entrepreneurship skills. Skills taught includes; Ankara Craft work, Fashion Designing, Catering services, Graphic designing, Mechanized Agriculture; Fish farming, poultry, Dog farm etc. We also have quiz/Brain teasers session and winners are awarded with airtime to their different networks. The aim of this program is for us to acquire a spirit of self reliance, developing skills for self employment. Anchors of this program are: Tamaraleyefa Blessing (Ankara craft), Jamiu Hammad Adelani (Fish farming), Diogu Coda (Dog Farming), Fadiyimu Stella (Fashion Designing), Asade George (Graphic designing), Ojone Julius (Catering services).

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3. Wednesday (Symposium/ Lectures)

So far we have discussed various topics during the cause of this program like; Corona Virus in Nigeria; Science & Religion the way forward, Impact on Nasarawa state; help build Nigeria, Automation & Robotics; Threat or a prompt to poverty eradication?, 5G Network; Good or Bad for Nigeria development. The aim of this program is to find a way to contribute to the growth of the National economy and make corp members amenable for national Interest. Anchors are: Daniel Adeniran, Nkem Happiness, Diogu Coda, Sunday Ojo.

4. Thursday (Battle of the Sexes)

This is a reality show, as we have discussed so far many contemporary issues as it concerns the both sexes like; Causes and effect of Matrimonial Abuse, Sexual assault/ Molestation; who is to be blamed?, Male superiority and female inferiority. The aim of this program is to help the both sexes to know each other well for a harmonious and habitable society. Anchors are: Salako Bolaji, Fesobi Deborah, Nwosu Franklyn, Ojone Julius.

5. Friday (TGIF Breakout Session)

There are five (5) Sessions, the platoon breaks out each person joins a session with a topic of interest;  Zero Hunger, No Poverty, Quality education, Good Health and well being, Clean water & Sanitation. At the end, each session make a report back to the general platform. The aim of this program is to inculcate discipline, patriotic and loyal service to Nigeria in any situation we find ourselves. It is inform of the normal Community development Service (CDS) Program. Anchors are: Asade George, Nicholet Emeka, Zaniab Aliyu, Edet Bisbong.

6. Saturday (Intercultural Dialogue)

Many topics have been discussed and studied in this program like; Improving Nigerians unity through cultural understanding, Unity in diversity, one color one people. This program have given avenue for inter tribe Language, culture and tradition learning. The aim of this program is to develop a common tie amongst us and promote National unity and integration and to clear prejudice, bias and eliminate ignorance to have a first hand the similarities amongst the Nigerian ethnic groups.

7. Sunday (Social Night/ Feedback)

On this day the group has a liberal group for more socialization, making jokes and sharing funny experiences. Mostly, share camp experiences. As Socrates would say “An unexamined life is not worth living”, we also use this opportunity to make judgement over the program performance from the previous week to enable build and make better program the upper week.

The platoon leader, Franklyn Nwosu also uses this medium to call on other platoon leaders in their various capacity, try to Make this dream come to a reality, not letting the youths that have gone home to just remain relaxed and have nothing doing. They could use this opportunity to groom themselves also in line with what the NYSC has in mind for us and with this at hand we can truly impact positively to Nigeria.

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Covid-19 & 5G Network: A Reproach to the Conspiracy Theory

Covid-19 & 5G Network: A Reproach to the Conspiracy Theory

Globally, there has been a terrific uproar among humans about the emergence of 5G Network and its mysterious connection with the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and Antichrist. A lot has been said and discussed about this development. But, in this wonderful article, there will be an intensive, educational and engaging discourse on Covid-19 & 5G Network, how they are connected, the truth behind the development, the need, relevance, importance, function, role and implication of 5G Network to the global and contemporary society.

Corona Virus

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The disease was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, the capital of China’s Hubei province, and has since spread globally, resulting in the ongoing 2019–20 Coronavirus pandemic. 

Common symptoms include fevercough and shortness of breath. Other symptoms may include fatigue, muscle paindiarrhoeasore throatloss of smell and abdominal pain. While the majority of cases result in mild symptoms, some progress to viral pneumonia and multi-organ failure. As of 6 April 2020, more than 1,280,000cases of have been reported in more than 200 countries and territories, resulting in more than 70,500 deaths. More than 270,000 people have recovered.

The 5G Network

5G is a new kind of network: a platform for innovations that will not only enhances today’s mobile broadband services but will also expand mobile networks to support a vast diversity of devices and services and connect new industries with improved performance, efficiency, and cost. 5G will redefine a broad range of industries with connected services from retail to education, transportation to entertainment, and everything in between. We see 5G as technology as transformative as the automobile and electricity.

 In general, 5G use cases can be broadly categorized into three main types of connected services:

  • Enhanced Mobile Broadband: 5G will not only make our smartphones better, but it will also usher in new immersive experiences, such as VR and AR, with faster, more uniform data rates, lower latency, and cost-per-bit.
  • Mission-Critical communications: 5G will enable new services that can transform industries with ultra-reliable/available, low latency links—such as remote control of critical infrastructure, vehicles, and medical procedures.
  • Massive Internet of Things: 5G will seamlessly connect a massive number of embedded sensors in virtually everything through the ability to scale down in data rates, power and mobility to provide extremely lean/low-cost solutions.

The Need, Importance, Relevance & Implication of 5G Network

Global Importance

The spectrum used for mobile communications is becoming congested. Current networks cannot always meet consumer demands for data. During periods of heavy use, consumers may experience slow speeds, unstable connections, delays, or loss of service. The effects can range from annoyances like a streaming movie freezing to life-threatening transmission delays between first responders in an emergency.

Importance on Economy, Technology and Business

The demand for data will continue to grow as the number of devices connected to the internet grows. The number of smartphone users in the United States has increased from nearly 63 million in 2010 to an estimated 238 million in 2018. In 2018 there were 17.8 billion connected devices globally, 7 billion of which were connected devices such as smart home equipment. By 2025 the total number of connected devices is projected to exceed 34 billion.

Importance on Industries as related to Business

Industries and consumers will rely on 5G networks to power the devices and transmit the data that drive their daily activities. They will need networks that can provide constant connections, minimal lag times, increased bandwidth to access and share data, and the ability to quickly compile and compute data.

Importance on the Healthcare Sector

In the health care sector, 5G could enable services such as remote patient monitoring, consultation, and even remote surgery. In transportation, 5G will be the backbone that autonomous vehicles rely on. A 2017 study from Deloitte estimated, “self-driving cars enabled by wireless connectivity could reduce emissions by 40-90%, travel times by nearly 40% and delays by 20%.” Before every pandemic of the last 150 years, there was a quantum leap in the electrification of the Earth.

The Conspiracy Theory on Covid-19 & 5G Network

While a conspiracy theory might be taken to mean any explanation of an event or situation involving a conspiracy, in popular usage (as opposed to technical legal usage) the term carries the pejorative connotation that the appeal to a conspiracy is implausible and based on prejudice or insufficient evidence.

Conspiracy theories resist falsification and are reinforced by circular reasoning: both evidence against the conspiracy and an absence of evidence for it are re-interpreted as evidence of its truth, whereby the conspiracy becomes a matter of faith rather than something that can be proved or disproved.

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Research suggests that conspiracist ideation belief in conspiracy theories can be psychologically harmful or pathological and that it is highly correlated with psychological projectionparanoia and Machiavellianism.

In the thesis statement of a YouTube video with the innocuous title “Dr. Thomas Cowan, M.D. Discusses the Coronavirus.” The 10-minute video features a man lecturing in front of a whiteboard. It looks like any other low-budget conference video, but that thesis—that pandemics are linked to the “electrification” of the Earth—got certain people’s attention. The video, which was posted March 18, has now been watched more than 660,000 times and has inspired a rather curious, rather dangerous conspiracy theory that the New 5G mobile networks are causing the spread of COVID-19.

5G mobile networks promise faster transmission speeds and lower latency. They’ve been the centrepiece of commercials from various mobile carriers, and they have become a battleground for technological dominance between the United States and China. In 2019, the Trump administration announced their plan for “winning the race” for 5G, and tech sources bemoaned that the United States had fallen behind China in 5G development. Some of the first 5G networks were activated in 2019, and that newness is how 5G somehow got linked to COVID-19 in some people’s minds.

But while the circumstances of this specific conspiracy are unique, the links between mobile networks and disease are a prime example of how history repeats itself. Almost every new wireless infrastructure gets linked to disease in one form or another.

A Reproach to the Conspiracy Theory

There seems to be a high level of disagreement to claims that there is a link between the 5G network, Coronavirus and anti-Christ. For the past few days, popular pastors and politicians have found a way to link the 5G network with spiritual things and Coronavirus epidemic.

Recall that Oyakhilome, a Nigerian Pastor, told his members in a sermon that the 5G was part of the new world order  where some figures of authority in the world were trying to build a religion, economy and government for the entire universe.Quoting Revelation Chapter 13, he said there is no need for a vaccine, adding that these are part of the Antichrist’s plan for a new world order.

However, Ashimolowo, another Nigerian Clergyman,  countered Oyakilome’s statement, explaining that there was no correlation between 5G and end-time signs.

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Mathew Ashimolowo warned Christians not to join Christian leaders in promoting conspiracy theories. According to him, all those claims were conspiracy theories that had nothing to do with the anti-Christ. He maintained that COVID-19 was a pandemic and must be dealt with as such.

“If coronavirus is caused by 5G, why is it in his village that does not have a 5G?

“It has always been the nature of Christian leaders to plant fear in their members whenever there was going to be a major world occurrence. The church should be more concerned about preparing their members for the Second Coming of the Lord instead of condemning a major technological breakthrough.

It’s fake news to associate 5G to coronavirus.

COVID-19 AND ISOLATION: Leprosy as a case study

Leprosy was the scourge of the ancient world. Nothing evoked more fear, more dread, or more revulsion than the sight of these walking dead. That is what a leper was called, a walking dead man. The smell of his decaying flesh would announce his coming long before the tattered scraps of his clothing would be seen, or his raspy “Unclean! Unclean!” announcement he was required to declare, could be heard. The stumbling shuffle of toeless feet, the wandering of sightless eyes and the moan of a cheek less mouth, all pointed to Leprosy, this unseen attacker that slowly destroyed human bodies, and made the individual an untouchable to society.

Leprosy is a vivid and graphic physical picture of the spiritual defilement of sin. Sin is ugly, loathsome, incurable, and contaminating; it separates men from God and makes them outcasts. The instructions given to the priests in Leviticus 13 help us understand the nature of sin: Sin is inside us, deeper than the skin (Leviticus 13:3); sin also spreads (Leviticus 13:8); sin always defiles.

Evaluation and Conclusion

I urge each and every one of us to discard this concept and idea of always reconciling societal issues, necessary human conditions and experience with Religion. The Christianity we practice today should display an exemplary with the teachings of Christ and religious leaders should focus on the preparation of their members to embrace the second coming of our Lord Christ rather than promoting fake propaganda.

I keep on asking the world this question; The Christianity we practice today is it the same Christianity that the followers of Christ practiced and they were called Christ-like people in Antioch of Pisidia? Why do we always link everything to religion! Few years back Ebola was a pandemic disease that faced some part of the world, Africa precisely but through God’s intervention it came to pass.

During the time of Christ, Leprosy disease was also a threat to humanity but when the untouchable is touched by Jesus (cf. Leviticus 13:42), “Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured.” ‘‘They were tempted to put their security in their own possessions and in their political alliances with other nations rather than in God. Hosea called his people to return to God to receive pardon, healing, and restoration. God does not abandon us; God goes with us, even now in this time of trial and testing.

In this moment, it is important for us to anchor our hearts in the hope that we have in Jesus Christ and reconcile with God seeking for forgiveness of sins. Now is the time to intensify our prayers and sacrifices for the love of God and the love of our neighbour.

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