The Zen, Tao, and Tantra of Money
Hello, my name is Claus David. My last name used to be “Grube”. When I married Andrea, my very long time fiancee, in spring 2011, I took her family name Gerdes. (I am proud to be part of that mighty Friesian tribe.) So it is Claus David Gerdes now.
I (born 1952 in Hamburg, Germany) am a trainer (NLP, meditation, anything that has to do with money and trading), book author, and futures trader.
I always wanted to really understand this world and this life. In 1968 and the years after I thought that for understanding life I need to understand society and that would come with understanding the economical dynamics. I still think that these are very important. In those days young people thought that Marxism would be a kind of answer. (Although nobody wanted to live in East Germany then. Those communists “had just gotten it wrong”. Later on I found out that I would not have liked to live in any state ruled my Marxists). Therefore I studied Political Science at the centre of German student revolt, the Otto Suhr Institute of the Freie University Berlin. There some very intelligent Marxist professors were teaching about Political Economic Science. I soon found that Marxist theories kind of not matched reality and turned out to be unscientific. But actually mostly all of the theories of Political Economics were and are not as good as they should be.
The focus of my generation moved to: “In order to change the world, you have to start with yourself!” I participated in therapy groups, became a therapist myself, went to most the thrilling self exploring centre of the world, the Shree Rajneesh Ashram in Pune, India. I was a disciple of Shree Rajneesh, Osho, for some years, great time. In 1982 Rajneesh started to have a big commune built in Oregon. It should have been a living utopia and it required a lot of money. I was asked to change my outlook (no beard, short hair, tie), generate money to donate by running my therapy groups in a profitable way.
I soon disliked the direction the leadership of the Rajneesh movement was taking (which actually led to a dramatic failure of the ranch experiment), but still took it as a task given by the master to learn how to make money. In 1983 I started to work as futures trader at a brokerage firm in Hamburg. Back to Economics. I liked to understand the markets in order to predict them, and to generate money for myself, the firm, the customers.
Futures trading really got me. I passed the US tests and worked as a futures trader in New York. I kind of liked the American Way much better than European half-socialism (“The Sozialstaat”). I became a libertarian and a market believer. And I met a lot of spiritually minded people who were doing very well financially. I realised (I kind of knew already from Osho and his Rolls Royce provocation) that wealth and spirituality may go well together.
I worked successfully as a futures trader and still loved to practise medtiation, meet gurus and masters (especially Zen Buddhism style), learn about Magick, learn better ways of therapy and coaching (became NLP trainer).
In 2000 I published a book in German “Das Zen der ersten Million”. In this book (a mixture of a quasi biographical story plus musings on money and Zen as such and NLP-style exercises for the readers) I described my way from ashram, monastery, or zendo with a Zen master to Wall Street. I describe how I made a million US$ from nothing within a few years and gave it to my Zen master. I used buddhist ways of thinking, meditation, and modern practises like NLP. The book sold very well and I had good attendance at “Millionaire’s Trainings” all over Germany.
Shortly after “Das Zen der ersten Million” was published, I was approached by a young man, Wolfgang Theil, who told me that he liked the book but that the money concept, that I explained in the book, was flawed. He, having studied Poltical Science and having been an asssistant to Professor Heinsohn, introduced me to shools of money concepts, which, after some quarreling and hesitating, I found convincing. The main book in this is from German professors Gunnar Heinsohn and the late Otto Steiger, “Eigentum, Zins und Geld”. Some very interesting discussions of money concepts took place on a German internet boards, where especially Dr. Paul C.Martin contributed profoundly. Dr. Martin, a well-known German author, is the founder of an economic theory he called “Debitism”. He furthermore developed a “Power theory” of money, where money mainly is what the forces of power declare worthy of acting as tribute, tax, contribution. Another interesting author on Property Rights is Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto.
Marx had a theroy of society’s evolution called “HistoMat”, Historical Materalism. Based on his flawed theory of money he made up a progression of societies from tribes to slavery to feudalism to capitalism to socialism to communism. I like the optimistic outlook in that progression (although I am glad the “dictatorship of the proletariat” will never come) and the notion that man’s social being determines his consciousness. (That is true to social consciousness. And I even think that it is true to most forms of religious or spiritual consciousness. There, however, is still an awareness beyond that and common to every being, I am sure.) Anyway, after putting all theories on money together (as well as theories on consciousness evolution like “Spiral Dynamics” or others described in Ken Wilbers “Integral Psychology”) I am sure that there is a different ladder societies climb. The main component of economies is credit. Credit needs securities and that is why the status of property rights are important. We therefore have early societies of gatherers (“hordes”), tribes, feudalistic systems with a central power, bourgeois societies of citizens with property, future societies of mutual investors. These days we see the fight of a dying feudalistic system (the central power of the king is replaced by pseudo-elected chancellors and presidents (and corporation bosses)) and the citizens with properties and small and medium sized enterprises.
The dying of the overdebted states and corporations plus globalisation with internet and information technologies present humanity with great opportunities. I very much endorse the free human beings with their own enterprises. We should organise global society like European cities of the early Middle ages with traders guilds and craftsmen corporations. We should find ways of sustainable profit making, healthy entrepeneurship, fair competition. We should invent philosophies that support self enhancement with co-operative adaptation. There will be a decline, a crisis, abnd it will bring great chances.
So basically I am offering insights and ways via books and trainings. That is how I make my money these days. Plus futures trading. Insights on trading strategy are to be found on traedo-strategy.com, those on market psychology and trader coaching on traedo-coaching.com.
Wealth Waay, a consciousness process on generating wealth, is the result of my own wrestling with the issue and I am happy to be able to offer this now to you, as it is bearing fruits for me now.
You must be logged in to post a comment.