My last blog in a year that has demanded a lot from all of us, after so many references to the deadly sins in life (my 2020 blog series on this starts here:) will for once focus on the beautiful and interesting things in this year.
My personal list of the most wonderful insights and experiences 2020:
1. Brain implants help people
I am an enthusiastic science fiction reader. Therefore I am always stunned when technologies from my books materialise in the here and now. This definitely includes the brain-computer interface, the development of which Elon Musk announced this year. Of course, I am aware of all the dangers (and sci-fi literature provides plenty of input). But the beauty is that technology can also help us a lot. Besides, it has been doing so for a long time anyway, as brain implants already exist today for numerous medical purposes. (for example:)
2. Physics easily explained
Although I absolutely disliked physics at school and had difficulty recognising its usefulness, today I find the findings of astrophysics and quantum physics in particular incredibly impressive and also so important for our insights and our openness to new things.
There is no objective reality
The beauty of quantum physics is that it proves that there are no objective truths independent of the observer. As an NLP Master, I obviously work on the basis that everyone constructs their own reality. And thus has only a limited understanding of the reality of another person. But the theory of quantum physics goes far beyond this, as it also includes the criterion of time. And time is another category that we have only constructed in order not to be overwhelmed by reality. Donald D. Hoffmann’s book “Relatively Real” seems to be very interesting here, and I will tell you more about it next year.
Because from January onwards, in addition to my monthly blog, there will be irregular book reviews on the books that I get my hands on by chance or intentionally.
Planets found in space with Earth-like conditions
Astrophysics has reported the discovery of the planet TOI 700d this year. This is an Earth-sized planet orbiting the red dwarf star TOI 700 in such a way that the conditions on it may allow life. Well, I have always been of the opinion that we are certainly not alone in the universe. This has already been confirmed in recent years by findings that located proteins on asteroids and meteorites, in some cases even on asteroids older than our solar system. Precisely these building blocks are essential for the development of life, and the current theory based on these findings is that they did not only reach our planet via meteorite impacts.
3. Wise use of plastic waste
In view of the fact that we are flooding the planet with plastic waste (Germany, by the way, is way ahead with 39 kg per person per year), it is extremely helpful to develop useful things from it. This is what happened with the Norwegian start-up Othalo. Othalo will use shredded plastic waste in combination with fireproof materials to build urgently needed housing in Africa. The project will start in Nairobi in 2021.
4. Ending homelessness
Finally, politics has also taken up the issue of homelessness. By 2030, the EU aims to get the current 700,000 people in Europe off the streets and to secure their human right to housing. Even though there are still few proposed solutions here that take into account in particular the mental illnesses of a large number of homeless people, this is definitely a step in the right direction. If you want to support homeless people in the current situation, you can find numerous initiatives for your region and your offers of help on the net.
5. The number of wolves and lynxes in Germany is increasing
The number of wolves in Germany also increased in 2020 compared to the previous year – although not as much as in previous years. The same applies – albeit with very low numbers – to lynx in Germany. However, Germany is still far away here from the comprehensive colonisation of the Alps and low mountain ranges that was planned for 2020. Nevertheless, as a cat lover, I am very enthusiastic about the idea of slowly growing lynx populations in Germany. Because from my point of view, we have to learn to live together with the wild animals with which we share the land.
6. Wild animals conquer inhabited areas
In many countries, especially during the first lockdown, there was a massive reduction in traffic on roads and beaches. Thus, many cities report animals on the roads that had not been seen there before. Deer and peacocks, jackals and coyotes, wild boar and goats have been spotted in places previously reserved for humans. (Nice pictures and reports – sorry, in german – here:) Some of them will stay with us in addition to the animal species that have already discovered the cities as a new habitat. At least that is the hope.
7. Newly discovered animal species
Also in 2020, numerous new animal species have been discovered (or rediscovered); especially exciting when they are mammals. For example, in 2020 scientists found a third species of (very Mogwai-like) large flying hawk in Australia and a new species of shrew on Sulawesi. How nice that there is news like this next to the extinction rates!
8. Mothers with three or four children become old less quickly
If a woman has given birth to between three and four children in her lifetime, a difference in health becomes apparent after the menopause. The researchers assume (source) that the female sex hormones buffer the negative side effects of pregnancy and breastfeeding. And that this effect becomes more apparent after the onset of menopause and with the disappearance of the sex hormones. This is once again an indication of evolution and its still active, very original mechanisms – completely unaffected by rapid population growth, the climate crisis or the gender debate.
Good news websites
Like me, a number of other people apparently found that only news of crises and catastrophes were permanently unbearable. And so I would like to share a series of websites with you here, where you can find beautiful things from all over the world in addition to the gloomy information in the daily media.
Websites with topics from all over the world:
- Readers Digest good news (https://www.readersdigest.ca/culture/good-news-stories-world/)
Here you will find funny, touching, thought-provoking short information from all areas of our lives and from all possible corners of our planet.
- Good news, talks and gifts (https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/category/news/)
Another site about good news worldwide from all kinds of areas. Here you will also find videos on special topics and a shop with products that all support a social project.
- The Beautiful from all over the world (https://nur-positive-nachrichten.de/gute-nachrichten)
A German-language site on good news. Here you will find many positive examples from all areas of life. But not only that, there are also tips for motivation and inner peace as well as the possibility to contribute to this site (financially and with your own contributions).
Websites with science topics:
- News from neuroscience (https://neurosciencenews.com/)
Since I somehow always consider the latest news from science to be good news, I like to read on this portal what’s new in the field of brain research. Here you can find scientific articles from brain research, from neurology and psychology, but also from robotics, genetics and neurotechnology.
- The latest news from various sciences (http://www.sci-news.com/)
Basically, this site offers something similar to the previous one, except that it also includes fields that I am, as a former historian, particularly interested in, such as palaeontology or archaeology. But you can also find genetics and astronomy, physics and space travel here.
Outlook for the year end
Under the influence of these numerous positive messages, I would like to encourage you to use the end of the year to find out for yourself what the year 2020 has brought you in terms of new and beautiful insights, new experiences and convictions. For the outlook on 2021, you should also look at what you did not succeed in this year. But only under the aspect of how you want to deal with this topic in the next year.
I myself have had very good experiences with the use of the Rauhnächte (what this actually is, I described here, among other things) for these experiences. There are a million instructions for this on the internet, where you will also find something suitable if you want to.
I myself use the very early morning hours (between 04.00 and 05.00) from 20.12. to 01.01., i.e. the 12 nights (and 11 days) that remain after the twelfth moon pass in the year. The nice thing about these early mornings is that at this time, there is not much going on yet. So I prefer to use these because I am not a night person. You might as well do it at midnight, late evening or even before 04.00h. I make myself comfortable in my mini meditation room with candles and go through one of the following questions:
My questions are:
- Who helped and assisted me?
- What went well – ideas, behaviours, relationships, solutions?
- Did I understand / learn new and / or beautiful things?
- What was I grateful for?
- Why I was missing to achieve my goals (exept external factors)?
- What people, ideas, behaviours and ways of thinking do I want to leave behind?
- Are there especially important thing to me for the next year?
- What do I want my success to look like at the end of next year?
- How can I say in the end of the next year that the year was beautiful?
- What attitude do I want to have towards my life next year?
- Which new insights I hope to experience in the next year?
- Is there anything I want to give to others in the next year?
Concentrating on individual questions makes it easier for me to focus on the essential things. Of course, you can also – if you have – use your vision board for the past year and the one for the next year to clarify once again what exactly your goals were and what hindered you and how this is reflected in your new vision board.
On each of the 12 mornings, I draw one tarot card from the major arcana (cards 0-21) and one from the minor arcana (the rest of the cards) to get a hint of what the theme of each month of the next year might be and what can help me with that.
The beautiful thing is that the cards always fit in retrospect. Whether this is due to my interpretation or to the fact that I have actually focused on certain themes suggested by the cards is left to your own assessment.
The reflection on the above-mentioned questions also works without tarot cards, if you are open to the questions.