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Power of the Mind

The power of the mind, and how to increase it are topics I cover repeatedly in the Brainpower Newsletter, and I get a lot of questions emailed to me from subscribers. Here are some of them, along with my answers (edited for clarity and privacy and grammar, of course).

Q: Have you ever heard of the 'Morphogenetic Field' (a sort of collective subconscious)? And do you think it is the reason so many inventions arise simultaneously in different inventors' minds?

A: Being more of a skeptic, I think the explanation for the multiple-source inventions is just that there are lot of people who have similar ideas because they come from the same premises/problems/logical connections. For example, it seems natural that many people all over the world would consider combining the concept of a bicycle with boat, and probably thousands did before one finally made a pedal-boat. In the end, it is the rare individual that does more than dream up these ideas, so most things (or at least simple innovations and new combinations of things) are probably invented mentally a hundred times or more before anyone builds a prototype.

Q: Why do you have so much unproven and un-cited suggestions and information in your newsletter?

A: I note the source of information for much of the content in the newsletter and on the site. Other times I simply report on what has worked for me and others. That is anecdotal evidence, but I am a big believer in trying things that have some evidence for them as long as they are safe. Science naturally doesn't bother to investigate nor prove anything until there are such stories to suggest there is a reason to look into something. For example, only because people used limes and other foods to prevent scurvy without scientific proof did science finally look into what caused the beneficial effects of some foods and so discovered Vitamin C.

Some of the suggestions are so simple (such as sitting up and breathing deeply) that with or without scientific proof, why wouldn't I give readers the opportunity to try them out and prove them for themselves? I test many things myself (I'm taking a brain supplement right now and will report on my results in a month or so), but I also report on any relevant research I can find.

You are right to be skeptical, but I hope you enjoy the newsletter anyhow and can prove a few things for yourself.

Q: Can a person with an IQ level of 120-130 be capable of thinking as fluently as a person with an IQ level of say around 140 or more?

A: There isn't necessarily much of a difference between a person with an IQ of 120 versus one with an IQ of 140. IQ really only measures potential, and in the end it's about how you use your intelligence. So, yes you can think as fluently or even better than a person with a higher IQ if you learn better ways of thinking. Good habits like asking "What other perspectives can this be seen from?" or "What premises are implied here and are they the only ones that make sense?" can make you a more powerful thinker whether or not this shows up in your IQ score. Intelligence matters, but it isn't the only part of brainpower.

Q: Is it necessary to have a high IQ level to be able to think more efficiently?

A: No, a high IQ is not necessary for efficient thinking, but having too low of an IQ might present a problem. In my opinion, anyone with an IQ of 90 or higher can have a good mind with practice, and anyone with any IQ can increase the power of the mind with a bit of work.

Q: I have read about programs on the net which claim can increase your IQ level tremendously
in a span of 4 months or more... one program says it can raise your IQ to as high as 180. Is this really possible?

A: IQ can be raised, but I doubt many people could raise it to 180 using any program unless they were close to that to start with (and an IQ that high or even near that is very rare).

Q: Do you put much faith in the subliminal messaging technology you advertised in your newsletter? Have you used it?

A: That's one which I haven't tried, and no I don't have much faith in subliminals. I include the link in the newsletter because so many people are interested in it and it has a money back guarantee in any case. That particular product also allows you to make your own recordings, so you can make them audible instead of subliminal. I have tried the the CDs from Think Right Now, which I also advertise. They are not subliminal, but are plainly audible affirmations that are repeated over and over in various forms. Those seemed to get my wife and I more motivated (we tried the one for motivation). Our limited subjective experience is not the greatest evidence, but they're harmless enough.

Q: You talk about mental telepathy being unproven, but I have had experiences that have no other explanation. Isn't it closed-minded to rule it out?

A: Yes, to rule it out entirely would be closed-minded, as would ruling out other, more mundane explanations like intuition based on unconsciously absorbed information. In any case, I really can't deny the experiences others have since I don't have the "inside information" they have. It would be especially wonderful to consistently have the ability to use such "sensing" or power or whatever we call it. If you can do that it doesn't matter how anyone explains it (or if I don't explain it).

I certainly have had experiences which others haven't had, and although they are more of what I would call spiritual rather than psychic, I know that skepticism from others is common until a person shares such an experience. In any case, if you have certain experiences that are useful to you it doesn't necessarily have to matter if I or anyone else believes in any particular explanation.

Q: What do you think of the Zox Training System (a product that is meant to help you develop photo-memory ability and other mind powers) on the Internet?

A: I haven't tried the product, but I just visited the sale's page, and the first line read: "Underground Secret Testing Lab Reveals: Most people use less than 2% of their total brain capacity..."

"Underground Secret Testing Lab?" Sounds like hype to me. In any case, the idea that we can say with any accuracy how much of our brain is used questionable. We can guess that we use a lot less than our total capacity, but all the various areas of the brain are used for something, so how do we measure how much is used? Any way it is done is arbitrary. Measure the amount of neurons activated in a day? Or how many bits of knowledge we have in there versus how many we could have - and how do we measure that?

On the other hand the hype doesn't mean it isn't a decent product. Even the good ones need a sales page, and exaggerations along with unproven claims seem to be the norm. It is one of the more expensive brainpower-related products I've seen online, but I noticed that it is sold through ClickBank. I've never heard of anyone having trouble getting a refund for a ClickBank product as long as they ask in the first eight weeks after buying. So if you do decide to buy it, you can easily get a refund if it doesn't work. And if you do, let me know what kind of results you get.

For more questions and answers on the mind and related topics, see the pages: Brain and Mind and Improve Brainpower, and watch the new pages section on the homepage as well.

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Relevant Pages:

Two Easy Meditation Techniques

The Intelligence of Self Observation

Self Awareness


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