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Below is a list of the articles I published since Sep 2021 in alphabetical order. A list of all articles ordered by publication date is on my Medium page.
A Logical Solution to the Hard Problem of Consciousness
Pure logic led to a solution of striking simplicity and beauty – and an instruction manual for yourself
In “The Simple Answer to the Hard Problem of Consciousness,” Shivendra Misra presented Philip Goff’s panpsychism as an answer to the Hard Problem of Consciousness. That is the problem of explaining why we experience the way we do. Knowing how consciousness works enables you to use your mind more effectively.
The idea of panpsychism is to posit that consciousness is a fundamental feature of all physical matter. This is a strong assumption that trivializes the Hard Problem of Consciousness because it postulates a solution. However, this does not explain consciousness and, therefore, is of limited value.
The first question must be: What is consciousness? All definitions of consciousness that I found are fuzzy. They either refer to other, similarly unsatisfactorily defined terms such as ‘awareness,’ or they circle back on themselves. That’s why I didn’t try to solve the Hard Problem of Consciousness in the first place. I am a mathematician and want to know everything precisely. My research started with a different question — and a solution to the Hard Problem of Consciousness came as a side result.
In my thought process, I used only pure logic and assumed nothing except that knowing is abstract. (Mathematicians strive to derive as much as possible from as little as possible.) Applying rigorous logic, I found “something” that I call EL (pronounced like “eel”), which brings forth a human phenomenon that can aptly be called consciousness (in the true sense of the word). Therefore, by explaining what it is, I offer a precise definition of consciousness and, as another side result, I provide a precise description of the difference between humans and non-human life forms.
I wanted to know who/what I am; how my mind works and how it is connected to my body; and I wanted precise answers. So, I gave up my career, my social life, and media consumption and put all my energy into exploring this question. After four years of intensive, original research I had fascinating answers, which I documented in my book on consciousness. In this article, I lead you through the major steps of my thought process so that you can see the solution — and EL — for yourself. All details can be found in the book.
Join me on this mental journey. Your benefit is a new perspective on yourself and the nature of our existence. This will allow you to make better use of your most powerful tool: your mind.
(published Sep 20, 2021)
A New Mindset About Money to Help You Thrive
Recognizing the destructive programs related to money and possessions
Usually, we learn to save money. If we need something that costs more than we have, of course we should put money aside for it. But saving money because we want (financial) security is just a program.
Let me show you why this program is limiting and destructive. Understanding the details can help you get free from it. I speak from experience.
(published Apr 27, 2022)
A Simple Exercise for a Fuller, More Attractive Voice
It’s simple, easy, fun, and profoundly effective
Your voice is your business card. In a personal conversation, it complements your appearance. In many situations, such as telephone calls, it’s all your counterpart perceives about you. What does someone’s voice do to you? Are there voices that you like to hear? Typically, it is the fuller voices that are perceived as more attractive.
Follow me as I suggest a simple exercise you can do to get a fuller voice. I learned about this exercise many years ago, and it has had a profoundly positive effect on me. So, I highly recommend it.
(published May 15, 2022)
Consciousness is Not the Same as Awareness
Understanding the difference can help you become a master of your mind
The words ‘consciousness’ and ‘awareness’ are often considered synonyms. This is not wrong if it is meant as a definition of one word in terms of the other, because definitions are free. But it is wrong from a linguistic point of view, because these two words have different etymological origins and, therefore, different original meanings. Using them synonymously oversimplifies the language at the expense of its ability to describe the nuances of what we experience.
Follow me as I explore how we have experiences. This will give insight into how the human mind works and clarify the use of the terms ‘consciousness’ and ‘awareness.’ This new understanding can help you become a master of your mind.
(published Oct 12, 2021)
Emotions are Not the Same as Feelings
How paying attention to the difference can promote mental growth
Language is one of humankind’s most valuable intellectual assets. It developed in parallel with our thinking. As a mathematician, I am trained for precision — precision of language and precision of thought. All mathematical work begins with precise definitions — which is relatively easy when you design a language as you need it.
After I quit my career and began exploring humans and human behavior, I had to use the English language for my research — and quickly got into trouble. The definitions that I found for terms denoting human phenomena such as consciousness or emotions were circular or referred to other, similarly unsatisfactorily defined terms. Vague definitions are not useful because they leave too much room for interpretation. No wonder so many human phenomena remain mysterious! And no wonder that people usually misunderstand each other, which is often the basis for problems — private, professional, scientific, political, you name it.
I simply ignore the vague terminology and explore the phenomena as such. After all, it’s about phenomena, not about words. Only then do I search for the appropriate words — and my experience is that in most cases the original meanings of the words are exactly right. Join me in exploring what feelings and emotions actually are — that is, what phenomena are aptly described by these two terms. This will not only give you a new perspective on feelings and emotions, but also introduce a powerful method for mental training.
(published Oct 30, 2021)
Intuition is Much More Than Just a Sixth Sense
Applying this new understanding of intuition takes you to a new level
In my article “Why the 2004 Tsunami Killed 230,000 Humans but Virtually No Animals,” I focused on intuition as a sixth sense. Since then, I’ve continued to explore intuition. In this article, I share a fascinating insight that shows intuition as a powerful phenomenon in a much larger context. At the end, I suggest a few exercises you can do to upgrade your access to intuition.
(published Jun 24, 2022)
Is the Universe Really Just an Illusion?
What does illusion even mean?
The perspective that the universe is an illusion is not only part of ancient traditions such as Advaita Vedanta and is often quoted by spiritual people, but it is also shared by some great Western thinkers
“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” (Albert Einstein)
Is this true? And if so, what exactly does it mean? In what sense is reality an illusion?
Follow me as I bring clarity into this.
(published Mar 10, 2022)
Learn From a Tough Lesson My Body Taught Me
The longer you are on the path of personal growth, the easier it can happen to you what happened to me
After more than ten years on the path of freeing myself from my programs, I gradually slipped into a state of mind that prevented me from making further progress. Having been on the path for so long, during which time my body had become my best guide, this triggered a strong body reaction when the time was right. The challenge was to understand the message.
Follow along as I share how things became difficult and how I found the solution. Hearing my story may help you if you find yourself in a simliar situation one day.
(published Jul 23, 2022)
The 7-Step Method to Become What You Truly Are
This is the essence of my ten years on this path
The simple formula for becoming what you truly are is: remove what you are not; what remains is what you are. But simple doesn’t mean easy. Finding out what you are not is challenging; and so is removing it.
You are controlled by countless programs that you learned when you grew up. These programs are the mental heritage not only of your parents, but of thousands of generations. At their core is an idea of what a human is, what the human potential is, and how to live as a human. Cultural, religious, national, regional, familial, and individual peculiarities extend this idea. These programs imprison you mentally.
But you are not these programs. They are what you must remove to become what you truly are. To do this, you must find them and become their master. That’s what I started doing at the end of 2011. In the following lines, I share the big picture of what I’ve been doing in the last ten years, summarized as a method.
(published Feb 28, 2022)
The Necessity and Magic of Asking ‘What Am I?’
The story of the eagle in the chicken coop shows why we need to ask this question and how to find an answer
In 2005, my life felt thoroughly boring — despite a successful international career as a scientist and entrepreneur. I longed to do something new, but I was at the forefront of an international movement. If I stopped what I was doing, many people would be affected. So, I did not have the courage to do what I knew I should do. But things turned out so favorably for me that I could end my career in 2009 gently. I started a new career as a mindset coach. But that didn’t really satisfy me either, and I was quickly bored again. Providence struck once more, and in 2011 I heard a woman talk about her experience exploring the question ‘What am I?‘. I was electrified — and hooked. From that day on, I wanted to find out what I am.
The question ‘Who am I?’ is about finding out what kind of human I am among all humans. The question ‘What am I?’ goes much deeper. It is about finding out what it means to be a human; what the full potential of a human is. With this question, I am not only questioning myself, but all of humankind. The following story illustrates what I mean.
(published May 6, 2022)
This Metaphor Can Help You Free Yourself from Your Programs
It describes how I successfully navigate through self-exploration
Self-exploration is the most important approach to personal growth: You explore yourself to identify the programs that control you, and then you learn to master them. By preventing the programs from producing behavior, you remove what you are not. What remains is what you are.
I have been on this voyage since 2011, and came up with the following metaphor that helped and continues to help me navigate through this process.
(published Apr 6, 2022)
Thoughts are Not Products of the Brain
Rigorous logic leads to a different an truly transformative perspective
There are correlations between thinking and brain activities. But all we can conclude is that thinking leaves traces in the brain. Hence, exploring the mind by studying brain states might be like exploring an elephant by studying its footprints.
Follow along as I guide you with scientific meticulousness to a new perspective that provides more and better answers, is amazingly simple, and shows, among other things, what the lower self and the higher self are.
(published Feb 9, 2022)
What is Freedom?
It is not what you probably think it is
What is freedom? Probably the most common answer is, “I am free when I can do what I want.” This definition equates freedom with power: the more power you have, the more you can do what you want, the freer you are. So you need power to be free in this sense. With this definition, the search for freedom becomes a search for power.
Having power sounds desirable, but what if what you want conflicts with what someone else wants? Then you get into a power struggle and your own freedom/power becomes the other person’s unfreedom — or vice versa. So there is something wrong.
Follow along as I analyze this concept of freedom. In the end, I will offer you an alternative concept that is natural and supports your growth.
(published Feb 21, 2022)
What is Intelligence?
Can it be improved?
Let’s get this straight right away: Intelligence has nothing to do with which schools you attended or whether you have earned academic degrees. Our education system does not promote intelligence. It doesn’t even value intelligence. Our education system only values and promotes qualities such as obedience, conformity, memory, diligence, and perseverance. These traits have nothing to do with intelligence.
(published Jun 1, 2022)
What is Life?
Rigorous logic leads to a perplexing answer with great implications
In my book “Consciousness : Its Nature, Purpose, and How to Use It” I looked at the question ‘What is life?’ from a logical point of view and concluded that in a universe where everything is subject to decay, a life form must perform five behaviors to stay alive. If you follow the path of logic beyond that, an amazing insight emerges.
Follow me as I take you through some thought experiments that lead to a simple and startling perspective. At the end of the article, I suggest exercises you can do to integrate the result into your life.
(published Jul 7, 2022)
What is Love?
Nature dictates an Answer
What does it do to you when someone says, “I love you”? How do you know the other person means the sentence as you understand it? Can you even put your interpretation of that sentence into words without using the word love?
Love is probably the most misunderstood word of humankind. “I love you” is probably the most manipulative and misused phrase in history. On the other hand, love is what humankind needs to thrive.
Follow me as I get to the bottom of love, explain why humankind needs it, and how it can be implemented.
(published May 23, 2022)
What is Our Purpose in Life?
How to experience true fulfillment
Why are we here? What is our purpose? These are fundamental questions of
life. To find an answer, I followed the advice of Albert Einstein, who
“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.”
Follow along as I share what I found out.
(published Mar 28, 2022)
What is the Difference Between Humans and Animals?
These two basic abilities make us unique on this planet
We are the only species that has transcended nature. We live in
non-natural environments and produce non-natural substances and tools.
No other species has done that.
What makes us unique? There are two ways to find out: zooming in and zooming
out. Science zooms in, such as by examining the genetic code.
In the context of my exploration of the question ‘What am I?’, I zoomed
out. The resulting perspective clearly shows what distinguishes us not
only from animals but from all other life forms on this planet.
Follow along as I summarize this part of my research. This will give you a new perspective on yourself as part of the whole.
(published Jan 3, 2022)
Who Will Survive When the Going Gets Tough?
Ultimately, we are subject to natural selection
Since life is a natural phenomenon, there is only one authority that decides about survival: nature. Nature uses a powerful principle for this: natural selection. Natural selection means survival of the fittest. Only the best specimens of a species survive. On a larger scale, only those species that fit into the ever-changing, endless dance of species on this planet survive.
It would be a big mistake to believe that we humans are outside of this. Nature can exist without us — but we cannot exist without nature. We are the most vulnerable species on this planet. One of my all-time favorite “jokes” is: Two planets meet. One says to the other: “You don’t look well. Are you sick?” The other replies hoarsely: “I have Homo sapiens.” The first planet counters: “Oh, that’s not dangerous. It will go away on its own.”
(published Sep 1, 2022)
Why and How You Have Much More Influence on Your Body Than You Think
You are the commander-in-chief
Imagine running a corporation with 100 employees. Every employee knows everything you know, think, and feel. Therefore, you command your employees with what you know, think, and feel.
Think about the implications of being the CEO of such a corporation.
(published Aug 28, 2022)
Why and How Your Body Helps You Free Yourself From Your Programs
Your body is your best buddy!
In „Why and How You Have Much More Influence on Your Body Than You Think,” I explained why and how you are the commander of your 35 trillion bodycells. You command them with what you know, which includes your thoughts, feelings, and perceptions.
There is yet another dimension to this, which makes your body your best buddy.
(published Aug 29, 2022)
Why and How Your Cells Read Your Mind – and What it Means for You
This explains intuition, the placebo/nocebo effect, telepathy, and even quantum entanglement
Many phenomena cannot be explained with the usual scientific model of the universe. In the course of my exploration of the question ‘What am I?’, I needed explanations for some of these phenomena. Since I am a scientist, these had to meet the best scientific standards. So I developed a new model of the universe. The insights gained from this proved to be very useful in my voyage of personal growth.
Follow me as I share one of my most fundamental insights. This will give you a new perspective on many things, including yourself, and it can help you on your path. At the end of the article, I suggest some exercises.
(published Apr 11, 2022)
Why Did Indian Sage Ramana Maharshi Die of Cancer at Age 70?
A fascinating and powerful perspective on cancer
Many consider Ramana Maharshi to be one of the holiest men of the 20th century. Why did he develop cancer at such an early age, when he was not exposed to any of the factors we know promote this disease?
Follow me as I analyze Ramana’s life and death and find a perspective that sheds new light on cancer.
(published Apr 17, 2022)
Why I Isolated Myself Socially for 3.5 Years and What Came Out of It
The enormously transformative power of being alone
At the end of 2011, I embarked on a mental voyage: I wanted to find out what I am.
Follow along as I share my experiences and insights before and during my time of social isolation and list the positive impact it had on me. Perhaps there are parts that resonate with you.
At the end of the text, I suggest useful exercises that can help you in your own growth.
(published Jan 25, 2022)
Why the 2004 Tsunami Killed 230,000 Humans but Virtually No Animals
A powerful lesson about survival – and more
On Dec 26, 2004, a tsunami in the Indian Ocean killed about 230,000 people, while virtually no animals died. They fled to higher ground before the water arrived.
Follow me as I propose and justify the most logical explanation for this and similar phenomena and what we can learn from it. I explain why this indicates that you were born with the potential of clairvoyance, and at the end of the article I suggest some exercises with which you can reactivate this potential.
(published Nov 13, 2021)
You Were Born a Genius – What Happend to It?
How to reactivate your genius and preserve that of your children
The common view is that geniuses are extraordinary people who were born with special abilities or worked exceptionally hard, usually both.
However, this is a very limited perspective. According to my own research, and supported by three very prominent voices, everyone is born a genius. But in most cases, the genius is lost as we grow up. According to this perspective, adult geniuses are those who have kept at least part of what they have been born with.
I was a math professor and businessman for over two decades. I gave up that career a decade ago and have since been exploring the programs that control us, how we can free ourselves from them, and what the full human potential is.
The perspective I found can help preserve your children’s genius — and give you the knowhow to free your own genius. (It’s still there!) At the end of the article, I give some exercises you can start doing.
(published Nov 22, 2021)