I was born 1963 in Rüthen, Germany into the family of a country doctor. Because my mother was working in the practice and I had been the third child and quite calm, nobody really looked after me. I felt lonely but I also had a lot of freedom to do what I wanted and I developed a strong self-will.
In my childhood, I changed my look a lot from no hair, to blond hair, to black hair, to long hair and later to grey hair.
In school, I had been quite good in mathematics. At the age around ten I said, that I wanted to be a mathematics professor, when I was grown up. My mathematics teacher taught me the first steps in programming. I think he had the first personal computer in town. But my talents and interests headed as well for music (violin, choir, guitar, jazz-rock band), theater and arts like drawing. I think I have always been crazy about a lot of very different things.
After my conscience was “officially certified”, I passed my civilian service in a children’s home. As an alternative to computer science I studied psychology in Hamburg in the 80s. Before I completed my degree my first son Jonas was born in 1988. While I was doing a training in Gestalt therapy I had the opportunity to work through my own personal background. One of my trainers in Gestalt therapy led a center for Tibetan Buddhism, where I went every week for three years. I worked in a place of refuge for the homeless, with psychiatry patients and addicts, and, later, in my own practice.
on the left: Jonas & Wolfgang, 1988, on the right: Frederick & Jonas, 1995
After my second son Frederick came into the world, we left Hamburg and moved to Lippstadt in 1994 and then two years later to Münster. To invest money from the disposal of a condominium I began to be concerned with investment strategies. More and more, I analyzed financial data and exchanged experiences via the upcoming internet.
In a supervision session for psychotherapists I had the metaphor of a fence that I was sitting on, psychology on one side, the world of finance on the other. Where to get off?
With the German professor of economics from Boston University Max Otte I launched a German Internet platform for investment strategies. I became a specialist for value investment and collected and analyzed a lot of long-term financial statement data. Numbers, computer and mathematics have been my domain. For me the stock market was a zero sum game … some are winning, some are losing. I wanted to be a winner. I wrote for a financial magazine “Die Aktien-Analyse” and with a friend I founded an investment company “ramos value | konzept AG”.
Sometimes, winning and losing happens quite close together. After my best investment year 1998 my marriage broke. My sons, one still in Kindergarten, suffered the most losing their family. Because I worked at home they stayed with me in the flat. In the next years I lost a lot of money in the “dotcom crises” and from the divorce. That motivated me to improve my investment strategies. And it provided space to cross paths with my current wife and love of my life.
We found a house to move in together. Because my wife wanted to spread her love to her own children, we took in two foster children, twins of 1 ½ years. Now we know that this is a big challenge for nerves and patience, but a wonderful enrichment. So, I live most of my adulthood with children.
To bring economy and psychology closer together, I undertook a training in a body and emotion orientated coaching with Boudewijn Vermeulen, a former public accountant. I improved my body awareness and being present and clear in the world.
After I had come in touch with Tibetan Buddhism 25 years ago, I joined a meditation and study group founded by Ringu Tulku Rinpoche in 2007. Although I have not become a profound meditator, Buddhist studies, slowly and step by step, changed my thinking and attitude toward compassion, peeled off attachments and nurtured a strong wish not to harm other sentient beings.
Ringu Tulku Rinpoche with his new shoes:
As the banking system crashed in 2008 I thought that it was time to try to understand how the monetary system worked. My most important teacher was Helmut Creutz. Now, I understood that the exponential growth of money on one side and debts on the other leads regularly to economic and social imbalance, collapse and even wars. The economic paradigm (and delusion) of infinite growth has enormous consequences for the ecology of our planet.
Now, as a growth critic, I threw my wish to become a millionaire to the wind and got involved with monetary reform, basic income and transition town movement.
I first saw Guy McPherson in an interview with Janaia Donaldson at Peak Moment TV in March 2014:
I was deeply touched by their serious conversation and their tears at the end of the session. I had not been shocked, because, in a way, I knew that unrestrained growth will lead to vast disaster. But, ultimately, to bear in mind losing all of what you love in the near future was really hard stuff. I wanted to know all about Guy and his work and invited him on his European tour in 2015 to our home in Münster, Germany. Warning: This Guy may be life changing!
Now, I dedicate myself to be a German voice for Abrupt Climate Change and Near Term Human Extinction. Why? I know that not everybody wants to know this message. But then, you might miss the chance to lead an intense, full and excellent life even when it is just for some years. I am convinced that if someone wants to confront oneself with the end of our civilization, it is much better to have someone at her or his side. So, here I am.
In 2015, I translated the great video presentation “Methane Monster II ~ the demise of the Arctic” by Jennifer Hynes into German. Her documentation is illustrating the melting of ice sheets and massive release of methane, so that the viewer can get a deep insight into the desperate situation of our world. For me, this translation work has been a long, deep meditation on the dying earth as we know it.
During this work my mother, who had lived in a nursing home close to my home, died in October 2016. So my grieving process experienced another dimension. In November, I had the opportunity to join a grief ritual workshop with the famous African shaman Sobonfu Somé.
With a big step of accepting the dire situation and more time after my mother’s death, I began to produce podcast episodes “Schneller als Gedacht” (Faster Than Expected). I had the honor to have the premiere with an interview of Guy McPherson in March 2016.
And I like: