Category: Ask Maria Anna

The Next Truth Has Gained a New Look

It was October 2018 that The Next Truth launched her very first magazine. Since then many of you have became familiar with the magazines look. This has slightly changed as both magazines of The Next Truth has gained a NEW LOOK.

https://www.magcloud.com/browse/magazine/1512517?fbclid=IwAR30-lelWtgxs5sTJJ4BmkNgNZxQfTaHznUur48ClXzHOLUGRpKKj41CvCg

These new layouts are not be withheld from you and can now be downloaded as a free PDF.

The Next Truth is not coming back with new editions containing fasinating articles, we are also going to present with you a weekly podcast in where renowned scientists and citizen scientists speak about their incredible research, awe-inspiring theories and mind dazzling paradoxes for you to explore the connections between accepted and noetic science.

So, fasten your galactic seatbelts and stay tuned as our guests will amaze you with their new research conducted what will let you balance on the edge of your chair for sure!

  • Questions you have been walking around with for years? The Next Truth provides an answer! Email your questions to; info@nexttruth.com

Journalism… what is it?

Journalism… what is it? We tend to think that this profession speaks only of releasing the latest news on scientific research conducted, Wallstreet updates, war activities in foreign countries, among others, in written articles and/or TV-broadcasts.

Even though these news releases are a perfect information source for us to know what is happening in the world, they do contain a certain sound of distance. I mean, when we are listening to, for instance, a scientist speaking of his or her latest findings, our minds are sliding in an almost hyper-state and starts to make overtime as it is trying to wrap itself around the complex content and the myriad professional terms these conversations and explanations contain.

Now, how many of you think in that moment, “Pffft, this is beyond my understanding” find it all tremendously dull and zap to a different channel?

With all due respect for my colleague journalists, but I think this effect is spawning from writing, or presenting, these awesome and awe-inspiring theories from a point of view that is too technological, too static. Yes, the articles written by scientists and citizen scientists are important releases for sure but the author(s) of these articles are equally important. And here is where The Next Truth differs from well-known journalism.

Who are these scientists? What influenced them to step into their field of research and… where is their research going to lead for them and for us?

Stay tuned as The Next Truth is in the process of conducting interviews which will be broadcasted as podcasts and contain their personal stories.

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The Importance of Girls and Women to Pursue STEM and Space Careers

In one of my FB posts I have mentioned that The Next Truth was leaving the door ajar concerning the gained the opportunity to go ON-AIR. Well, a few days back the first requests were send out what has started the process of recording and editing some of the very first Skype interviews.

Yesterday The Next Truth had the privilege to speak with Mrs. Chiara Chiesa who is an International Public Relation expert and Space Technology Commercialization Transfer advisor and recently has being selected as mentor, female model and ambassador for the Space4Woman Network of the United Nations for Space Affairs. UNOOSA United Office for Outer Space Affairs.

It was about 3 weeks ago that a friend of mine from the scientific community mailed me a highly interesting link what directed me to Chiara’s LinkedIn post what read that she is one of the 27 women, chosen between space professionals and space industry leaders from all over the world, who will engage in popular activities and, with personal stories, aim to inspire and mentoring girls and women to study STEM subjects and access the space sector.

And if that is not impressive enough, she is also the president and co-founder of INTERSTELLARS and fond of new technologies, sales advisor for Graphene-xt and PR and advisor for Walle mobility, which is a taxy-drone startup.

Chiara is one of the 1000 “Unstoppable women” who are changing Italy through innovation, list by StartupItalia and aims her focus on inspiring girls and women to pursue STEM and space careers.

* Stay tuned for the precise date of the first podcast to be broadcasted.

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Post-Traumatic Growth; Can We Embrace New Possibilities?

By Maria Anna van Driel

Post-Traumatic Growth Order (PTGO) is fact!
…as soon as you have kick-started the chariot.

As they say, trauma is a vivid nightmare that comes while we are in this state of being ‘awake’. Not only is it, for a myriad of people, difficult to overcome the psychological bruises which are accompanied with trauma, it also takes tremendous perseverance and resilience to overcome this invisible battle that is taking place day-in and day-out.

Not knowing how to cope with it, you knock on the door of a professional psychologist or psychiatrist who will then let you run into a new wall by telling you to act as a stereo-type victim as well as that you have to replenish your medicine cabinet and…they have the best recipes for you to suppress any nasty thought and/or spooky dream, which will wake you up screaming, you are about to experience in the future.

There is no doubt that, for some people, medication is a true working remedy but, as we all know, we are all unique individuals meaning, everyone has their own way in responding to a traumatic event. Even though Cliniclowns are doing incredible and important work, a professional psychologist and/or psychiatrist does not have to dress-up and/or act as such all the time but is seems that the above mentioned psychologist and psychiatrist have forgotten that positivity and laughter, for instance, do have a deeper and longer effect in losing certain tensions whereby this suffering suddenly has a transformative power.

We have all hear about stress and its inevitability, yet succumb to the displeasure when it strikes us. While resilience may help to withstand the pain to some extent, PTGO allows us to grasp the knowledge of using the pain to change our lives for the better.

When we think about it for a moment, it is remarkable to see that the brain is, somehow, capable of ‘choosing’ such a vivid form of processing the stress that is accompanied with PTSD. In this it would be an almost logical line of thought that this reality is as real as the sandwich you are eating during lunch…right?

This made me curious about PTGO. I read many articles concerning PTSD and PTGO during the last weeks and even had the privilege to speak with several Neuro-Psychologists and (clinical) Psychologists via Skype. The pro’s and con’s of medical and spiritual healing processes were indeed interesting topics to discuss as well as trauma being the main cause for a foggy/altered reality.

However, be in religion, poetry, philosophy, or literature, the general understanding of how pain can be beneficial is not a new concept altogether. The scientific field of positive psychology has embraced this process of thriving and calls it Post-Traumatic Growth Order (PTGO) better known as the self-improvement one undergoes after experiencing life challenges.

The idea of Post Traumatic Growth Order is a popular one and describes how survivors of traumatic events cannot only heal from their trauma, but may actually grow into a stronger, more driven, and more resilient person because of their trauma.

With evidence-backed examples, the astonishing and eye-opening articles of experts, which can be read in this month’s issue of The Next Truth, will delve a little deeper than what we have known so far about trauma. They will help you in understanding the essentials of PTGO, how to weather it and how to apply this in our lives.

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The Psychological Impact of Corona virus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak

Behavioral expert and Psychologist Professor Wändi Bruine de Bruin Weighs In

By Maria Anna van Driel, www.nexttruth.com

It was inevitable! The threat of the corona virus pandemic has gripped the world population.  The ongoing pandemic of COVID-19 was, according to Wikipedia, first identified in Wuhan, Hubei, China, in December 2019, and was recognized as a pandemic by the World Health Organization on 11 March 2020.  As of 24 March, more than 414,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in more than 190 countries and territories, resulting in more than 18,500 deaths and more than 108,000 recoveries. But besides the clinical picture of COVID-19 and the myriad news broadcasts spreading an avalanche of information on how to reduce the process of becoming sick and how to prevent the virus spreading, there is also a psychological effect. An effect what is most likely finds its source in the isolation that has imposed on people and will remain visible for a longer period after COVID-19 is so abundantly present in our lives.

How do people perceive the risks of this novel threat?  What are the psychological effects of the isolation we are experiencing? To gain both a deeper insight in these questions and a clearer view on the latest research developments of today’s pandemic I reached out to an expert on public behavior during risky times and decision-making from the Netherland, Prof. Wändi Bruine de Bruin, PhD.

At USC, Prof. Bruine de Bruin is affiliated with the Sol Price School of Public Policy, Dornsife Department of Psychology, Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, and Center for Economic and Social Research. https://priceschool.usc.edu/people/wandi-bruine-de-bruin/

Prof. Bruine de Bruin moved to USC from the University of Leeds (United Kingdom), where she directed the Center for Decision Research and held a Leadership Chair in Behavioral Decision Making. In January 2020 she imitated the new position of “Provost Professor of Public Policy, Psychology, and Behavioral Science” at the University of Southern California (USC) where her research aims to understand and inform how, across the life span, people make decisions about their health, their well-being, and their environmental impacts.

‘At USC, Prof. Bruine de Bruin explains, Provost Professors are appointed by the Provost in recognition of their contribution to multiple academic disciplines.’ ‘It feels great to get this recognition and that interdisciplinary research is valued so much at the University of Southern California.  In my view, important societal problems cannot be resolved by looking at them through the narrow lens of just one academic discipline.’

Together with her colleagues at the USC, she is conducting a national US longitudinal survey to track people’s risk perceptions of and experiences with COVID-19, as well as economic and mental health consequences.  But when Prof. Bruine de Bruin started her career, applied and interdisciplinary research was often frowned upon – because it was thought to not make sufficient theoretical contributions.  In this she disagrees, given that insights from other disciplines can help improve on theories and methods for testing theories. 

‘Needless to say, my first semester at USC did not turn out the way I had anticipated’, Prof. Bruine de Bruin adds. ‘Fortunately, my USC colleagues are also wonderful to work with over Skype, Zoom, phone, and email.’

Nowadays she has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers on these topics, in journals targeting psychology, public policy, health, and environmental science. She is a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Experimental Psychology:Applied, the Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, Decision, Medical Decision Making, the Journal of Risk Research, and Psychology and Aging.

‘We have come a long way in showing that interdisciplinary research can lead to new insights – with both practical and theoretical implications’, Prof Bruin de Bruin states proudly.

To become more familiar with the work of Prof. Wändi Bruine de Bruin you can visit the Website of the University of Southern California, https://priceschool.usc.edu/people/wandi-bruine-de-bruin/

Welcome Professor Bruine de Bruin. I appreciate the time you are taking for letting us peer into your career as a provost Professor of public policy, psychology, and behavioral science and your psychological view on this frightening topic of COVID-19.

Q: Can you tell the readers of The Next Truth a little bit about yourself? Who is Professor Wändi Bruine de Bruin?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin:  I grew up on a flower farm in the Netherlands, and was the first in my family to attend university.  I received a BSc in psychology and an MSc in cognitive psychology from the Free University in Amsterdam.  My family wasn’t sure how to feel about my chosen path, but that changed when I got into the PhD program in Behavioral Decision Research at Carnegie Mellon University in the United States. 

Q: What inspired you to step into the science of psychology and behavioral science?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin:  I originally wanted to be a therapist, so I went to the Free University in Amsterdam to study clinical psychology.  However, the initial classes I was taking on that topic did not involve a lot of discussion of the evidence base for their approaches.  I was much more attracted to the psychology of judgment and decision making, which was taught as part of cognitive psychology, and offered a more rigorous approach for identifying potential problems, developing interventions, and testing their effectiveness.  Although a lot of the research in that field focused on studying decision problems in the lab, with undergraduate students as participants, I thought it had great promise for understanding and informing people’s decisions about real-world issues, such as those related to their health, finances, and environmental impacts.

Q: I spoke briefly to your colleague Professor Baruch Fischhoff and he made me extremely curious about the origin of your surname. Would you reveal to our readers what the peculiarity and history is of your surname?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin:  My mother spent some time tracking our family history and it turns out that our last name is a mistake. “De Bruin” is a common last name in the Netherlands and it means Brown.  At some point in my family history, someone added “Bruine” (which also means brown) to indicate the first name of their father.  A lot of people think that our name indicates some kind of fancy heritage, but it was simply a mistake. My family has existed of farmers or farm hands for many generations.

My name is unique, but hard to spell. Even my co-authors have a hard time getting it right.  I often get mis-cited as de Bruin, WB or with several other variations. 

Q: If I understood correctly, you are originally from the Netherlands. How did you come to work as a collaborating professor at Carnegie Mellon University?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin: Gideon Keren supervised my masters thesis and he strongly encouraged me to apply to the PhD program at Carnegie Mellon University. I had never been to the United States, and wasn’t so sure that I wanted to live there.  But I loved the idea of working with Baruch Fischhoff, whom I had cited heavily in my masters thesis.  I got in, and have been working with Baruch ever since.  (And I liked living in the United States much more than I thought I would.  I lived in Pittsburgh for a total of 16 years, and live in Los Angeles now, after 7 years in Leeds, United Kingdom.  I am still a collaborating professor at Carnegie Mellon today, although my main affiliation is now as Provost Professor at the University of Southern California.)

Q: The world has undergone a lock-down so to speak. What do you think will be the psychological and economical effect(s) of this global isolation?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin: In the baseline survey of our national longitudinal COVID-19 survey that we conducted in March 2020, when COVID-19 was starting to spread in the United States, we were already seeing the initial mental health consequences.  Participants were reporting elevated levels of anxiety and depression, which are likely to worsen over time, as the health and financial consequences worsen. 

Q: Are you in a quarantine area yourself? If so, how limited are your social activities at the moment and how do you experience this isolation?

Prof, Bruin de Bruin:  My husband and I only recently moved to Los Angeles. I started my new job at USC in January of 2020.  We were hardly settled in when the stay at home order went into effect in California. We had not even gotten around to buying a car yet – not that we need it now. 

I have been working from home since March 10.  I started earlier than was required by USC or the state of California, because I had been taking the bus to work, and it seemed wise to avoid public transportation. 

Although I am not a pandemic flu expert, I had served on two expert panels on pandemic flu in 2005-2006, to contribute expertise in psychology and behavioral science.  I had learned a lot about pandemic flu and non-pharmacological interventions such as social distancing. 

We still go out for walks in our neighborhood, where the streets are quiet and it is easy to maintain a safe distance from others.  Because we only just moved here from England, we very much enjoy the weather and the beautiful gardens in our neighborhood.  I think those walks are keeping me sane.  And, even though it may sound strange, all the work associated with the COVID-19 survey is also helping to keep my mind off worries about COVID-19.

Q: According to the website of World Health Organization; “Older people and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.” Which impact has information as such on the decisions people make?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin:  In our initial survey that we conducted in March 2020, we are not yet seeing a lot of differences between older vs. younger people, and people with vs. without diabetes, in terms of their tendency to step up their hand-washing and social distancing.  I think that at that time, people were still unsure about how serious it was, and what to do. 

We did find that older adult age was associated with reporting better mental health, despite older adults recognizing the greater case-fatality rate for their age group.  This finding is in line with other research in the psychology of aging, which suggests that older adults experience less negative emotions, have better emotion regulation, and are less responsive to stressors. 

It is possible that these findings will change as the epidemic continues, and people who are older and those with serious health conditions are disproportionally affected.  I expect that our first follow-up survey will show more responsiveness to the information that has been released, in regards to greater risk perceptions and anxiety, and even more implementation of protective behaviors.  We will also be examining how people with serious health conditions are faring. 

Q: Racism or xenophobia seems to rise in people’s minds as soon as social media hints in the direction of a possible origin of a flu outbreak. It was only recently that the world was in a panic mode about Ebola, which originated in Africa. How do you think that a previous shock as such plays into how people are reacting today on the threat of the COVID-19?

Prof. Bruine de Bruin: Our survey had questions about discrimination and unfair treatment associated with COVID-19.  In our initial analysis of data collected between March 10-16, we found that 14 percent of Asians and 10 percent of non-Hispanic blacks had such experiences, as opposed to 4 percent of non-Hispanic whites, 6 percent of Hispanics and 6 percent of people in other racial and ethnic groups.

Q: Professor Bruine de Bruin, thank you so much for this interview. Do you have any additional advice you can give on how people can manage their anxiety around this novel virus?  

Prof. Bruine de Bruin:  A lot of people are feeling increased anxiety, which is normal under these circumstances.  Some helpful suggestions from the field of psychology for reducing anxiety:

  • Focus on the things you can control
  • Limit exposure to anxiety-provoking news sources
  • Do slow breathing exercises
  • Be kind to yourself and don’t beat yourself up for being stressed and distracted
  • Take care of your health
  • Stick to a daily routine
  • Connect with others (via the phone, Skype, or zoom)
  • Seek professional help (via phone or telehealth) if your anxiety is too hard to deal with

For additional suggestions, please see the CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html

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“How to build your own Corona Deactivator”

Informational version: https://youtu.be/hvBI4ruyWDE
Tutorial version: https://youtu.be/E5LAGs_y748

Family, friends, colleagues… sadly, too many people have already been ripped from our lives by this virus we have become to know as COVID-19. And even though, medical trained people are working around the clock… the correct antidote has yet not been found.

Now, you can close our eyes while sitting in the corner of a room, hoping that this virus is passing your front door or… you can USE this feeling of ‘hopelessness’ and convert it all into a powerful explosion whereby the most profound thoughts and ideas are coming to life!

This is exactly what Dr. Hendra Kesuma, an electrical engineer who is currently serving as Research and Development Manager at AES Aircraft Elektro/Elektronik System GmbH while working closely with Airbus and University of Bremen, did! He sat down for almost 2 weeks and, like many worldly known scientists from our history, he created a low power, laser based, portable air sterilizer, aka “The Corona Deactivator”.

This device can be build by each and one of us and has the ability to reduce the risk of catching the corona micro-droplets.

Other information on how this idea works can be found via the article: “Laser destroys bacteria and viruses without using harmful UV radiation” https://www.photonics.com/Articles/Laser_destroys_bacteria_and_viruses_without_using/a37465?fbcli

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World-renowned Scientists are Pushing the Boundaries of Accepted Science!

Like all things in our world, they start small almost like a microscopic idea of nature itself. And with these myriad of microscopic evolutions incredible ideas are brought to live what has resulted, and is still resulting, in most amazing achievements!

Over the years I learned that many people are extremely hungry for absorbing the knowledge and the mind boggling complexity of the research conducted at universities and scientific institutes.  Unfortunately, there are people who seem to think and work in the safe surroundings of what is already known and/or speak from written in text-books. Pseudoscience! It is utterly nonsense and b*llsh*t! Nothing more then superficial and meaningless words, gibberish talk! …are statements that are then uttered very easily, without any thought. But is that really fact? Are any new ideas and/or theories coming from challenging ‘known’ or ‘accepted’ knowledge really hypothetical nonsense?

Life is a cruel system, is it not? Or should I say society is? You work hard…really hard…for days, weeks, months… you put all your energy in your field and/or lab research, your calculations, or in finding the perfect words for your essay, thesis, book, article. During this period you slowly start to see a fabulous outcome. Yes…you are going to ace this for sure! Proudly you present the results of your hard work and then…reality kicks in. People say your calculations are gibberish, you have researched in the wrong direction and your book does not contain understandable grammar. SH*T!

Now you can throw all your notes out of the window from the highest building you can find and crawl into a deep and dark cellar hiding yourself from the world…getting consumed by this terrible feeling of disappointment. Okay, this sh*tty feeling is understandable but do really think you have failed? No, you did not!

And this determination and perseverance the world renowned contributors of The Next Truth are showing is what fires me up…time and time again! These people dare to challenge anything new, people who look into the world and say; “I believe in myself and I am not giving up!”

Yes… I am of the opinion that it is critical, absolutely critical, that our scientists and citizen scientists have to feel comfortable to undertake their work, to explore unconventional or controversial topics. They must be free to challenge the thinking of the day and to feel free to present uncomfortable or inconvenient truths, because THAT is how scientists push boundaries and pushing boundaries is, after all, what science is all about.

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A Q&A with Dr. Zahi Hawass on the adventurous existence of Archaeologists and Egyptologists

Don’t Just Visit the Past, Experience It!

By Maria Anna van Driel, www.nexttruth.com

Dr. Zahi Hawass is an Archeologist, Egyptologist, former Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs in Egypt and  energetic promoter of the wonders of Egypt’s ancient past.  www.drhawass.com

The movies of Indiana Jones and The Librarian immediately come to mind with most people when hearing the word “archeology”. They like to think about the life of an archaeologist as a mysterious and a very adventurous endeavour. Well, they are partly right, except that this intriguing corner of science has mainly to do with extreme logistics and the scientific study of the material remains of past human life and activities rather than creepy mummies coming back to life, ghostly knights lingering in dark dungeons and sacred relics topped with glistening jewels.

In order for you to gain a better understanding of what Archeology and Egyptology is, The Next Truth reached out to the world-renowned Egyptian archaeologist, Egyptologist, and former Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs, Dr. Zahi Hawass.

Dr. Hawass was born in a small village near Damietta, Egypt. Although he originally dreamed of becoming an attorney, he obtained a bachelor of arts degree in Greek and Roman Archaeology from Alexandria University in Alexandria, Egypt in 1967 and in 1979, Dr. Hawass earned a diploma in Egyptology from Cairo University after which he then worked at the Great Pyramids as an inspector—a combination of administrator and archaeologist.

At the age of 33 he was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to attend the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia to study Egyptology, earning a master of arts degree in Egyptology and Syro-Palestinian Archaeology in 1983, and his PhD in Egyptology in 1987 from the Graduate Group in the Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World, concentrating on “The Funerary Establishments of Khufu, Khafra and Menkaura During the Old Kingdom.”

In 1998 Dr. Hawass received the First Class Award for Arts and Sciences by the President. He was recognized by Time magazine as one of the world’s 100 Most Influential People in 2006 and received an Emmy Award from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for a documentary on ancient Egypt in 2006.  

Over the course of his career Dr. Hawass has made a number of major discoveries that led to significant findings, including the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders at Giza and the Valley of the Golden Mummies at Bahariya Oasis. He also initiated the Egyptian Mummy Project, which used modern forensic techniques such as CAT scans to study both royal and non royal mummies. But besides being an archeologists and Egyptologist, Dr. Hawass is also a regular columnist for Egypt Today magazine, and the online historical community, Heritage Key and the author and co-author of many books relating to Egyptology which includes his latest book “Zahi Hawass’ Secret Egypt”.

To become more familiar with Dr. Hawass’ appearance in countless TV programs that have spread the story of ancient Egypt worldwide, and books visit his website, www.drhawass.com 

Dr. Zahi Hawass during the mummy DNA project. Photo credit: Dr. Zahi Hawass

Welcome Dr. Hawass. I appreciate the time you took for letting the next generation scientists peer into your career as an Archeologist, Egyptologist and the former Egyptian Minister of Antiquities and Director of Excavations at Giza, Saqqara, Bahariya Oasis, and the Valley of the Kings and Archeologist.

Q: You are a world-renowned archaeologist and an expert in the one branch of science that allows you to step into the history and culture of ancient Egypt. But for those young scientists who don’t know much about your background, can you tell us a little about yourself? Who is Dr. Zahi Hawass?

Dr. Hawass: I’m and archeologist and an Egyptologist, mostly well-known for having served as the Minister of Antiquities in Egypt. I started my career looking to be a lawyer, but then, I focused on archeology during my bachelors. I gained a Fulbright fellowship and travelled to the US where I got my doctorate. After that, I was able to do more and major excavations, write books, and give lectures. I was rewarded from many cities in the US, and received about 7 honorary doctorates. I was chosen as one of the Times’ top 100 in 2006. Currently, I am working in my research projects, excavating the Valley of the Kings and supervising the Egyptian project where we CT scan the mummies.

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about the history of Archeology?

Dr. Hawass: The history of archeology began by adventurers and treasure hunters; we can think of G.B. Belzoni who discovered Seti I’s tomb and Howard Vyse who opened tunnels in the Sphinx with dynamite. Then, this was followed by a wave of scientific research in the 19th century; here we can mention Flinders Petrie, the father of Egyptology, Lepsius from England, and many Egyptologists many began to introduce it as a science. The ancient Egyptian language began to be studied by all philologists worldwide.

In the 20th centuries, many countries began to establish departments to offer the chance to study Egyptology. University departments and museums used to come and excavate in Egypt with students from all over the world. The Egyptian archaeologists came after: the first was Ahmed Pasha Kamal who was involved in the cachette of the mummies in 1881. After that, Egypt entered a new era, opening departments for archeology with many students but still there was still a lack of training.

When I became head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities in 2002, I made major important work to train many young people in excavation techniques and for them to travel outside of the country and come back with doctorate degrees. Now Egyptology became a solid science in the country.

Q: How do you become an Archeologist and what are his or her responsibilities?

Dr. Hawass: You should start with undergraduate studies in archeology, follow it with a masters and then do postgraduate studies. If you can, join a university or a museum for employment. It is then important to do research in modern Egypt on ancient Egypt by working in excavations. It is also crucial to engage with other scholars and attend scientific conferences to present papers. In terms of responsibilities, one has to protect, excavate and write about monuments, do major conservation and publish what is discovered. Finally, one should give public lectures to spread awareness about Egyptology.

Q: Did you have a role model that influenced your decision to become an Archeologist?

Dr. Hawass: No, only the story that made me fall in love with archeology. There was no model for the public to take after. My decision to become an archeologist came from the fact that I had been working at an excavation in Egypt, when the workers called me to let me know they had found a beautiful female statue of Aphrodite. This was a wonderful object and as soon as I saw it, I felt that I had found my love: archeology. 

It is important to have passion in this field of work as it can be challenging; passion is the main key for success as it gives one the endurance and the patience to not only keep going but to give a lot of efforts in the projects we take on.

Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie is  a (1853 -1942), commonly known as Flinders Petrie, was an English Egypt-ologist and a pioneer of systematic methodology in archaeology and pre-servation of artifacts. Photo credit: Petrie Museum Of Egyptian Archaeology, Ucl.

Q: How do Archeologists know where to dig? Which tools are being used during an excavation?

Dr. Hawass: Archeologists know by conducting research to establish the reasons to excavate in a particular location. For example, when I began to look for the tombs of the pyramid builders, I studied the Giza plateau. I found the oldest limestone wall dated to the Old kingdom, this wall was to separate the royal and workmen. Also, in the same area, there was a mud seal with the hieroglyph ‘pr-sh- na’ (workmen installation). In my research, I put a question mark on that. When I returned after obtaining my doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, I began to start looking. I found it in the same location I did my research in.

Discoveries also come by accident. You have to start the excavation regardless. We found the valley of the golden mummies in Bahareya oasis by complete accident. For instance, when the antiquities guard of the temple of Alexander the Great was riding on his donkey to his home, the leg of the donkey got stuck in a hole, the guard stepped off the donkey and he looked in the hole: he found tombs with mummies covered with gold. I went with my team for 3 years; we lived in Bahareya oasis and discovered the Valley of the golden mummies.

Q: Is being an Archeologist dangerous?

Dr. Hawass: Sometimes it is. For example, I was excavating the tunnel of Seti I and this tunnel goes down 174 m inside the mountains. While I was excavating, a stone about over a tone fell on my leg and broke my toes. Also, while I was excavating, looking for the tomb of Cleopatra and Mark Anthony, a stone half a ton in weight fell almost on my head. Thankfully, the stone was half a meter high away from my head but this made a macular hole in my eye. I can definitely say that archeology is dangerous, but adventurous and fun.

Q: On your website we can read that you have made a number of major discoveries over the course of your career, including the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders at Giza and the Valley of the Golden Mummies at Bahariya Oasis. How are these sites being secured and why?

Dr. Hawass: They are completely secured. Every tomb and antiquity site does have appointed guards. There are also security antiquities police in charge of the protection of the site and there is a system of inspectors and directors in every site. Their responsibility is to protect and maintain the sites so it is very well supervised.

Q: How are the historical and valuable artifacts, found at a site, stored and categorized?

Dr. Hawass: When an artifact is discovered, you clean it; you restore it on site if there is a need for it and before you remove it from the area in which it was found. Then, you carry out its documentation through photography. You write a description for it then put in a registry book that goes to the government. After that, you move the artifacts to a storage magazine to be kept safely. When you need to write a book or an article on the artifacts, you can go and study them to decide the date of this artifact.

Q: What is for you the most impressive find that you have made in your career?

Dr. Hawass: I think that every discovery I made has added something to me and to my life. For example, the tombs of the pyramid builders were very important for me as they were the ultimate proof and answer to all the people who hold extraordinary beliefs and theories about the pyramids. For example, those people who believe in aliens having built them or that Atlantis is under them.

When I found a new pyramid near Khufu’s pyramid that also made a very deep impression on me personally. When I did the CT scan of the mummies and successfully identified the mummy of Hatshepsut, and how Ramses III was murdered – these were crucial moments for Egyptology. And, you know with DNA we got to find out how Tutankhamun died as well as we were able to put together the family of Tutankhamun, identifying the grandparents and parents. Now, my excavations in the Valley of the Kings are revealing many important aspects to the East and West Valley; we are hoping that one day we will discover the tomb of Queen Nefertiti in either.

President Barack Obama tours the Pyramids and Sphinx with Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities, Zahi Hawass (left), Senior Advisor David Axelrod and Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel (right), June 4, 2009.  Photo credit: Pete Souza, Chief Official White House Photographer.

Q: Why is Archeology important today?

Dr. Hawass: It is important today because each and every country’s constitutes that of the whole world and humanity’s. Egypt, of course, is no exception. Moreover, studying the past and restoring it helps us understanding how things evolved until they came into being today and how they can keep evolving to the future.  We need to learn and remind ourselves of the wisdom, science and technology of ancient people – all of these are important to be understood today.

Q: Today you can look back on an impressive career and much to be proud of; what would you say is a moment in your career that stands out as most meaningful?

Dr. Hawass: There are many good moments that I consider significant and that makes me proud: when I scanned the mummy of Tutankhamun. This happened in Luxor, when I took the coffins out and I met Tutankhamun face to face. Another great moment was when I found the secret doors inside the Great Pyramid of Giza. Another noteworthy event was when I found the tooth in the canopic box of Queen Hatshepsut; the molar lead me to properly identify her mummy. I would say these were some of the most beautiful moments in my life as an archeologist.

Q: What holds the future for your books and your career?

Dr. Hawass: As always, I am involved in many archeology and Egyptology projects. Moreover,I am now writing my life story which is almost done and due to be published soon. In terms of more work, I want to continue my excavation work in the Valley of the Kings as well as wrap up the second royal mummy project. Lastly, I am planning to give 20 lectures in 20 cities all over the US in May and June.

Q: Dr. Hawass, thank you so much for this interview. I am sure it will be an inspiration to many. Do you have any additional advice you can give for aspiring Archeologists who want to excavate and secure the mysteries of past civilizations?

Dr. Hawass:  I think it is very important for individuals to be passionate about the work they are doing. When you have passion, you can achieve from the littlest to the biggest things. Not only will it give you perseverance but also patience to keep at it during difficult times.

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Someone has backed you up!

Today, anno 2020, I may say with pride that I am the founder and owner of The Next Truth magazine what has become international within one year and is focusing on an academic trained audience, citizen scientists and those who have an indomitable curiosity for scientific explanations concerning topics viewed, and thought of, by the majority as myths.

Also, since January 2020, The Next Truth saw the opportunity to take the next step and expand with a second bi-monthly magazine, “Young People Science”. And since recently, The Next Truth has found the possibility to create a flipbook for anyone who is interested in the incredible stories and research conducted by scientists and citizen scientists, but is not in the position to purchase a print version of the magazine.

Working in the midst of world-renowned scientists as well as speaking with citizen scientists who are conducting amazing research in their own field of interest and specialize their already possessing skills even more…it is a true honor having the opportunity to be a part of this all and to see the progress you have made.

But I couldn’t have said the above if I didn’t had the one person who had the courage to publish my very first and extremely bad written, article in her magazine (Paranormal Underground Magazine) in 2015. What where you thinking Cheryl !! 😂

However, the moral of my words is; when you start to find yourself climbing out of a crazy jungle and looking over the surface of the tall grass into a direction in where your goal is getting clearer, never forget those who backed you up. We all started at the bottom and worked ourselves up with the help of others.

Once Cheryl-Knight Wilson was my teacher, editor and, if I may express it that way, my boss. Today she is my colleague magazine. 😊

Many, many thanks Cheryl taking me in back then and providing me the change to refine my witting skills.

For your connection to paranormal realms: https://paranormalunderground.net/

For the flipbook of The Next Truth: https://www.yumpu.com/…/630660…/the-next-truth-february-2020

For reading the full article “Scientists are Conducting Fundamental Research with ‘Speed Machines’” http://nexttruth.com/?p=24575

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Three Days of Hell on Earth!

2008 was the year that I typed the first story telling words on my laptop and I felt proud when I saved the word document. It took me 6 years after that before I wrote my first scientific lines for a booklet having only 95 pages and it t took me 3 years more before I wrote my very first scientific article. A real crappy one compared to my latest publications. Really, it was that bad, I cannot edit this myself anymore! And yes, I still have the article what bears the title, “Tachyon; the Leading Element in Evolution? “

Nevertheless, holding the home printed version of my very first scientific article I felt like standing at the top of the Mount Everest. I had reached the top of my writing skills! Hum, I was wrong. Standing on that mountain a helicopter flew over and the pilot informed me that I was not on the mountain I thought I was on—apparently that is a few hundred kilometers in a different direction. How did I end up here? Not to worry, I can tweak a couple of parameters and then apply my insights to the actual mountain I was standing on—assuming it is actually a mountain—has anyone checked?

After all those years of writing it turned out that I was just starting. 2 more years of struggling and pushing the boundaries in learning more about the scientific fields and how to find the correct words which are expressing both the complexity and the beauty of contemporary science, was what I still had in front of me. 

Today, anno 2020, 4 books, 17 published issues of The Next Truth and over two dozen articles can be added to my leaning process. But have I reached that point in where I have aced my writing skills? May I tell myself that I am allowed to look out for the highest point of the Mount Everest? 

In the second week of January 2020 I received an email from IWMF (International Woman’s Media Foundation) what stated that several grant proposals had been opened that provided me the opportunity to submit my proposal. Even this feeling of ‘is my English sufficient enough for this’ started to overpower me I was eager to start. So, I opened the form and, when scrolling to the bottom, I found that I needed two professional references. SH*T!

It took two days but I found two people willing to act as a reference. Yes…fantastic! Thank you so much. And so, the next day I started to write but what I did not knew in that euphoric moment was that writing this grant proposal turned out to become 3 days of pure Hell on Earth!

My surrounding did not understand me. Why was I putting in these tremendous efforts for something which I probably would not get anyway? “It is an uncertain factor, a waste of time! So, why all these efforts for nothing?“ Because I believe in myself, that is why!

Three days passed by of writing, rewriting and pushing my own boundaries…again because this was not the first time that I wrote into a grant proposal. I felt alone, not understood and my brain was slowly turning into something that looked like crumb cake. The moment I finally clicked the ‘submit‘ button, what was about 01:30 in the morning, I could no longer distinguish the letters from the words.

Three days after I started writing my grant proposal, I found myself staring at my computer screen reading these words “Your application has been submitted successfully” over and over again. There I was, tired and alone in the middle of the night and…I cried. I felt relieved, exited and shitty at the same time while dealing with these thoughts of not being selected as a candidate for this grant. People will say…”You see, it was all for nothing. You are just not good enough!”

Now, you can say, “Ah, there is that female thing again“, but in my opinion, these feelings are logical and normal. It does not show weakness, as some might think of that moment in where someone is expressing his/her emotions and/or thoughts; it shows that you are human first.

For those who write into grant proposals on a regular base, regardless the topic and financial amounts involved, you have my full respect because you have giving more then 100% of yourself.  

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