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Vesselin Petkov, From Illusions to Reality: Time, Spacetime and the Nature of Reality (Minkowski Institute Press, Montreal 2013), 160 pages.

ISBN: 978-1-927763-01-8 (ebook) - $7
ISBN: 978-1-927763-00-1 (softcover) - $15
ISBN: 978-1-989970-53-9 (hardcover) - $26

Published - 8 September 2013

eBook: $7.00     Buy the ebook (PDF with hyperlinks)

Things are never quite the way they seem.
Stan Ridgway - Camouflage

The greatest mystery in the world is its very existence. In our intellectual development, we all reach a turning point when we start asking the perennial existential questions: "What is the world?"; "What am I?"; "What is the meaning of the existence of the world and myself?". As the German philosopher Schopenhauer put it: "The lower a man stands in intellectual respects the less of a riddle does existence seem to him... but, the clearer his consciousness becomes the more the problem grasps him in its greatness."

This book explores what fundamental physics tells us about the physical world and how the scientific picture of what exists often differs disturbingly from the "common sense" view based on the way our senses reflect the world. Centuries-old illusions are identified by showing that they contradict experimentally-confirmed results of modern physics, which clears the way toward deeper understanding of reality. The greatest illusion that the world exists only at the present moment of time has been realized by many great thinkers, but so far the human race has been unable to free itself from it, prompting Einstein to write this: "the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion."

Getting rid of such stubbornly persistent illusions by open-mindedly examining the implications of modern physics for the physical world can help us rise above the fog of everyday life and see Nature the way she herself is.

Reviews at: Amazon.com


1 What to Trust to Avoid Believing in Illusions

2 Logical Arguments Against Illusions - Eleatics, Aristotle, and Augustine

3 Galileo's Brilliant Mind - Experiments and Logic Against Illusions

4 How Racing a Light Beam Helped Einstein to Identify the Illusion of Absolute Time

5 Spacetime - Minkowski Strange World

6 Einstein Against the Whole World in 1916 - It is an Illusion that Gravity is a Force, Gravity is Curvature of Spacetime

7 Another Strange World - the World of Quanta

8 Spacetime and the Illusion that Time Flows

9 Spacetime, Free Will, and... the Meaning of Life

10 Instead of Conclusion: A Final Challenge of Minkowski Strange World

From the Appendix of the book - in which courses these topics were discussed.


The physical (paper) book can be ordered from (for more options see):

Update: 11 October 2014 - The results of the AWARE study published on 6 October 2014:

Results of world's largest Near Death Experiences study published

AWARE-AWAreness during REsuscitation-A prospective study

Life after death? Scientists gather 'out-of-body' evidence in 'largest-ever' study

The results of this study were planned to appear an year ago and the study was quoted on p. 127 of the book:

"After the announcement of the AWARE preliminary results in the Fall of 2013 we will be in a better position to say whether consciousness may survive the end of the worldtube of a human body and whether the meaning of life may indeed refer not to our physical bodies, but to our consciousness."

Here is another personal account of near death (out of body) experience by a trusted professional - Christopher A. Pearsall - in his answer to the Quora question "Is there any hard proof of life after death?" Here is the text of his Quora answer:

I suppose the question is, "What is hard proof?" Personally, I already know the answer.

When I was 12 years old I drowned. My mother saved me but not after quite a bit of work and more minutes than I care to count. During those minutes I saw everything my mother was doing to resuscitate me. I saw the breathing. I saw the chest compressions. I saw the people standing around. I heard what they were saying. I even remember trying to speak to my mother saying that I was okay and felt fine even though I saw my body lifeless on the sand. I can remember everything and the whole event in vivid detail.

Scientists theorize that when we die our brain still has electric energy, which causes us to remember or possibly hear certain things when we are resuscitated. This is the closest I have found to any sort of possible explanation. However, the explanation fails in my case. I SAW everything from an aerial view in vivid detail. While I might somehow have heard things through electrical impulses or some semi-conscious level, there is no way I could have seen things and then described them from floating a good 10 to 12 feet above my body and the circle of people surrounding me with such precision.

I was out of my body. I was my spirit but yet wholly me without physical form. I was peaceful as if in another dimension. No one could hear me. No one could see me as I verbalized in some manner that I "felt fine" despite what I was seeing because my mother was so panicked and upset. I then found myself suddenly literally pulled back into my body.

Is this hard proof? To me it is. I am as grounded as it gets when it comes to practical explanations for things but this is not something in all of my life that could be explained away by science or anyone.

I don't have to believe in God or a supreme being; nor do you. But as a lawyer, who now thinks critically and tries to explain everything possible and find evidence of it, I still have no doubt that I not only touched, but was literally "in", some level of what exists beyond this life.

Our body may degrade but I can assure anyone who wants to know: There is some sort of life... after death.