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1  General / What Works, What Doesn't / The Power of Meditation on: June 08, 2013, 10:17:30 AM

The power of meditation & spirituality to heal the body and the mind have been known to humankind for thousands of years. Yet, it is only in the last few decades that attention has come to be focused on this technique of self-development by the science community. There is an entire forum dedicated exclusively to this subject, here:

The forum has a vibrant community, and care is taken to eliminate spamming, so members can enjoy their interaction without annoying distractions. Members are invited to register, and learn meditation and spirituality practices from the best of teachers.

Sanjay Agrawal
2  General / What Works, What Doesn't / The Power Of Auto-Suggestions on: November 23, 2012, 09:56:30 AM

Some years ago, the entire world appeared to be under the magic spell of Rhonda Byrne's "The Secret". This magic ebbed away after some time, and the world lapsed back into its old way of living. The book however became a classic in the self-development genre. For those of us who might have missed out on the hullabaloo, here is the article that talks about it:

Auto suggestions are  a very powerful energy... but you need to have faith in what you are doing.


3  Self Improvement / Psychic Abilities & Phenomenon / Re: developing psychic skills on: November 11, 2012, 03:05:12 PM

Those of us who are exploring the possibility of developing our psychic skills, may want to go through the following article:

4  General / Welcome -- START HERE! / Hello To Fellow Self-Developers on: October 27, 2012, 06:37:36 AM
Hello and greetings to all fellow self-developers. Hope to share ideas and experiences on self-development with you once again, after a long time.

5  General / Post your Problem! / MOVED: Did you try using Hydrogen Peroxide 35% food grade? on: August 06, 2010, 07:20:36 AM
This topic has been moved to What Works, What Doesn't.
6  Chit Chat / The Coffee Shop / Fear Of Success, Aka The Jonah Complex on: May 30, 2010, 04:44:06 AM

We all know about the fear of failure. There are umpteen stories and
anecdotes on this fear that propels us to strive hard and avoid failure.
Even SMSes nowadays tell us how the fear of failure carries more influence
on our psyche than does the anticipation of gain.

But have you heard of the fear of _success_? That we might be stumped in our
tracks with the thought of what will happen if we were to succeed?

The fear of success was first explored by psychologist-philosopher Abraham
Maslow. He wrote about it in his book - "The Farther Reaches Of Human Nature". He
used a parable from Jewish mythology to describe the complex, calling it
"the Jonah complex".

Fellow counselors who would like to grasp the essence of this fear in order
to explore it in their counselees, and understand why the most promising of
talents languish in the dustbin of anonymity and ignominy, and why people
sometimes hesitate to reach out for that which they most definitely deserve;
may read up on this article here:


7  General / What Works, What Doesn't / Re: It only had to be a matter of time before someone rubbished Brain Training on: May 18, 2010, 03:41:16 PM

Indeed, the paper does not dwell on how the control group might have come to acquire the same overall cognitive ability as the experiment groups. No conjecture is offered. Especially since the researchers rejected the improvement in the experiment groups outright just on the results reported from the control group.

Some more research is called for, before rejecting the hypothesis that developing neural pathways for cognitive ability A does not impact the neural pathways for cognitive ability non-A.

8  General / What Works, What Doesn't / Re: It only had to be a matter of time before someone rubbished Brain Training on: May 15, 2010, 03:58:38 PM

The research paper in question was published in the April 2010 issue of Nature; the authors were Owen, et al; and is available online here:

The paper describes a clinical trial conducted on 11,430 volunteers in the age group of 39-40, from both genders, and this trial lasted six weeks. The hypothesis that the experiment set out to prove or disprove was: if you train on one cognitive task A, then your skill level in an unrelated, but equally cognitively-demanding task B, too improves. The experiment used one online website to train the volunteers for task A; and another online website to test whether the said training automatically led to their improving their skills in task B. The motive behind the experiment was to test the veracity of the marketing hype of commercial "brain trainer" games which claimed that when you practice their games, your brain's "overall" cognitive handling capacity improves; and not just the ones related to the tasks that you were practicing.

The volunteers were divided into three groups: Group 1 members were administered training on six tasks (which is our A in the analogy above). Group 2 members were administered training on three other tasks (again A). These tasks were similar to the ones found in the commercial games. Group 3 members formed the control group.

Before the experiment began, the volunteers were given four benchmarking tests (which is B in our analogy). Then, after the training sessions were over at the end of the sixth week, these benchmarking tests were once again given to the three groups. The results obtained from the post-training-period benchmarking tests were compared with the results from the pre-training-period benchmarking tests. The entire experiment was conducted online.

It was found that the participants could improve their performance on the tasks they had been performing all through the six weeks (that is, for A tasks). Which was to be expected, as the brain's plasticity is affected to the extent that new neuronal pathways are especially generated in the cortex which are adept at handling the task being repeated.

But the following two points appear to have been overlooked by the media: Group 1 participants gave higher performance in all the four benchmarking tests taken by them after the six-week period was over. Group 2 participants showed an improved performance on three benchmarking tests. This means that the participants' performance improved for unrelated, but equally cognitively-demanding tasks B.

The researchers now turned to group 3, the control group, who had during the six weeks been given random questions, whose answers they were asked to search for on the internet. They found that the control group's performance too had improved on all the four benchmarking tests. This observation forms the basis of the researchers' rejection of the hypothesis that training in cognitive tasks A can lead to overall improvement in cognitive abilities. Ergo, the commercial "brain trainer" games are not doing anything special to your brain which random, idle internet googling cannot anyway do.

It is worth noting that the paper does not discuss the limitations of the research, not least being that the training sessions were conducted online, and volunteer activity was never under direct observation of the researchers. (The watermark on the paper's PDF file I have with me says it is "not final proof", so may be the final version will discuss the limitations.)

The rationale that the default increased performance in benchmarking tests of the control group points to specific cognitive-ability training being of no use and having no influence on the overall cognitive ability, appears to be weak at face value. Deeper literature review will reveal, I am sure, the outcomes of work done elsewhere pointing to one neural pathway being set up affecting the other neural pathways in the areas controlling cognitive abilities.

The one good side-effect of the clinical trial could be that, caught on the back foot, the promoters of the brain trainer games may feel motivated to replicate the trial themselves and dive deeper into the neurobiological changes happening through the experiment, and come out with something substantial that will contribute to our knowledge of how the brain functions.

My two pennies worth.

9  General / Welcome -- START HERE! / MOVED: Hi y'all.... on: May 08, 2010, 06:25:02 AM
This topic has been moved to Post your Problem!.
10  Chit Chat / The Coffee Shop / Re: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to All on: January 01, 2010, 04:38:16 AM


I join the members of this thread to wish everybody a happy new year and a happy new decade. May the coming time add momentum to the progress we are making at the individual and collective levels on the path of self-development.

God bless,
11  General / Welcome -- START HERE! / MOVED: Has Anyone used Quantum Cookbook on: October 14, 2009, 06:30:41 AM
As the topic is more suited for What Works, What Doesn't, it has been moved there.
12  General / Welcome -- START HERE! / Re: PORNOGRAPHY GALORE! Am I the only one to notice the TON of [banned word] on this site??? on: September 27, 2009, 02:26:45 AM

Hello Ruben, Iawiam,

Thank you for your messages; your concern is much appreciated.

The offending posts have been removed.

Removing spam from the forum is a 24X7 job. At any point of time, somewhere in this world, there is some human being or some bot ever ready to hit the forum with whatever they are peddling. Given the time-zones they are in, usually one of the moderators is always around, vigilant, to clean up. For every single offensive post that you get to see, there are at least 10 posts that have been removed no sooner were they inserted. It is when coincidentally none of the moderators is at their desk, that the spams get to stay around longer.

God bless,
13  General / Post your Problem! / Re: Does a postcount include replying to posts? on: September 24, 2009, 06:05:45 AM


Yes, replying to a post adds towards the postcount.

The rule of 10 postcounts is in place to discourage people who want to use the forum only for the purpose of embedding URLs here, in order to boost their pagerank in search results; and who are not here to learn or to contribute to the threads being discussed.

Some people post messages that are only "fillers" by nature; these messages are bereft of any meaning but increment the postcount anyway. Anybody reading them can gauge what the member is up to, and it certainly doesn't help their cause.

Cooperation from all members in maintaining forum discipline is requested.

God bless,
14  Self Improvement / Lucid Dreaming & More! / Re: dreaming of being posessed and tortured on: September 13, 2009, 04:50:44 AM

Hello beccas,

It is said that dreams are a re-packaged version of the deeply-held thoughts and emotions that we have invested a considerable amount of cathexis in, during our waking hours. The torture that you visualize you are giving yourself in your dreams must, therefore, be but that very same cathexis rearing its head and giving you an outsider's-perspective-in, into your situation.

The best way to resolve your situation might be to let go off the feeling of helplessness and hopelessness, to shift away from the state of "not (being) happy in my life", and to focus on areas where there is gratitude and blessing.

God bless,
15  General / Post your Problem! / Re: Why don't I do what I need to do??? on: August 17, 2009, 03:59:38 AM

Hi all,

Let us not forget that this is a self-development forum. Conducting oneself with dignity and decorum, respecting the opinions of others, and most importantly, being empathetic --- are certain protocols that need to be followed at all times.

On the self-development path, we first turn the searchlight on ourselves. This helps us become cognizant of our own flaws. That I feel is the motivation behind becoming member of a self-development forum such as this: to learn from the standpoint of a student, first and foremost. To develop the self, first.

Along the way of this self-development, we automatically develop the understanding as well as the humility to guide fellow human beings who may be struggling with their issues. We also develop the maturity to not take offense or feel slighted or insulted if there is someone who does not agree with our views and opinions. We realize that everybody has evolved in their own unique way, just as we have evolved uniquely. And that therefore they are entitled to form their own worldview that may be different to what we hold. Without converting a civilized, polite conversation into a battle for one-upmanship, we therefore make our point, empathize with the other person's point of view, see if there is anything to learn, and move on.

A counselor's job can be very challenging, I agree. Because when we take on the role of a counselor / adviser, we are also engaged in an inner dialog that demands that we examine our own thoughts, and be open to rectify any flaws. A counselor has to first and foremost understand that they too are learners on the self-development path.

This thread has taken an interesting shape. Somebody is seeking help on a self-development issue, and it is great to see others sparing their valuable time to chip in with their insights, wisdom and experience. I hope that the original poster of this thread has found some gems of insight and knowledge in here from all the offerings made by fellow members thus far, that might help them in seeking answers to their issues. Steven, let me tell you that, while none of us is perfect, we are all trying our best to be of help - from our own perspectives and using our own inimitable styles.

God bless,
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