Are you an angel or a gremlin?

Some people have a reputation for having a positive or negative effect on electronic equipment – they are either an ‘angel’ or a ‘gremlin’.

One of the fathers of quantum theory, the brilliant theoretical physicist Wolfgang Pauli, was widely known to possess a powerfully negative force field. Whenever he arrived at his laboratory, mechanisms would freeze, collapse or even be set alight.

I am a gremlin of the first order. In those rare moments when I am crashing around in a bad mood, computers in our office have begun crashing in unison.

Some years ago, during a day of extreme agitation, after I had broken my computer and printer at home, I headed off for work and tried to work on a variety of computers around my company’s office.

One by one, they died in my hands. When one of our laser copier printers also froze the moment I tried to photocopy a page, my team firmly but politely escorted me off the premises.

The stubborn robot
The late French biologist Jacques Benveniste discovered the gremlin effect first hand when he carried out experiments on electromagnetic signaling between cells.

From 1991, after his noted ‘memory of water’ studies, Benveniste understood that the basic signaling between molecules was not chemical but electromagnetic.

Within a living cell, molecules communicate, not by chemicals but by electromagnetic signaling at low frequencies, and each molecule has its own signature frequency.

Until the end of his life in 2005, Benveniste explored the possibility that these molecular signals could be transferred simply by using an amplifier and electromagnetic coils.

He demonstrated that it was possible to create a molecular reaction without the presence of the molecule in question simply by playing the molecule’s unique ‘sound’.

One of Benveniste’s many experiments with cellular signaling concerned the interruption of the coagulation of plasma, the yellowish medium of the blood.

Ordinarily caused by the presence of calcium in the liquid, the clotting capacity of plasma can be precisely controlled by first chemically removing all existing calcium in the plasma, then adding back in particular amounts of the mineral.

By also adding heparin, an anticoagulant drug, the plasma is prevented from clotting, even in the presence of calcium.

In his study Benveniste would remove calcium from the plasma and add calcium to water, but instead of adding the actual heparin to the calcium water, he simply exposed the water containing calcium to the ‘sound’ of heparin transmitted through the digitized electromagnetic frequency of heparin that he had discovered.

As with all his other experiments, the signature frequency of heparin worked as though the molecules of heparin itself were there: in its presence, the blood was less able to coagulate.

Benveniste had a robot built to carry out this experiment, largely to silence his critics by eliminating the potential bias of human interference. The robot was a box with an arm that moved in three directions, mechanically exposing the water containing calcium to the heparin in several easy steps.

After hundreds of such experiments, Benveniste discovered that it usually worked well except on days that a certain woman – an otherwise experienced scientist – was present.

Benveniste suspected that the woman must be emitting some form of waves that were blocking the signals.

A frequency scrambler
He developed a means of testing for this, and discovered that the woman emitted powerful, highly coherent electromagnetic fields that appeared to interfere with the communication signalling of his experiment.

Somehow, the woman acted as a frequency scrambler.

To test this further, he asked the woman to hold a tube of homeopathic granules in her hand for five minutes. When he later tested the tube with his equipment, all molecular signaling had been erased.

Since the problem was likely to be electromagnetic, the obvious next step was to protect the machine from EMFs by building a shield. But once the shield was in place, the machine stopped producing good results.

Benveniste pondered this development for some days. Perhaps it had to do with positive effects of the environment, and not simply the absence of negative effects.

He opened the shield and asked the man who had been in charge of the lab for many years to stand in front of the robot.

Immediately, the robot began again to crank out perfect results. As soon as the man left and the shield was put up, the robot no longer produced decent data.

This suggested that, just as some people inhibited equipment, others enhanced it. The shield, originally erected to stop negative influences, had blocked positive ones as well.

Benveniste reasoned that the only substance near the robot capable of picking up positive or negative activity was the tube of water, so he asked the head lab technician to hold the tube in his pocket for two hours.

He then put the tube into the machine, removed the man from the room and put up the shield. After that, the robot’s experiments worked virtually 100 per cent of the time.

These anecdotal stories of the gremlin effect are not so farfetched when you consider the mountains of data generated by the late Robert Jahn, former dean of engineering who ran Princeton’s PEAR laboratory, demonstrating that human intention has the ability to make the random output of computers more orderly even when the intention is not conscious or deliberate.

Living consciousness might have a major effect on microprocessor technology, which is now exquisitely sensitive. The tiniest disturbances in a quantum process can be highly disruptive.

So today, make sure to tell your computer and smartphone to have a nice day.

Urge to kill

When forming visualizations to heal an illness like cancer, most people believe you need a good-vs-evil battle in your head.

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For your eyes only

Judy Dench, who played ‘M,’ head of British Secret Service in seven James Bond movies, broke hearts recently when she spoke openly about her failing eyesight.

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The place where miracles happen

I’ve been pondering the exact mechanism why people can miraculously heal themselves and their lives when participating in Peace Intention Experiments, when I thought of Richard Davidson.

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Climate change: the Zero Point solution

My favorite bit of misinformation about me on my Wikipedia page is the reference to a column, written by an ardent skeptic, that my book The Field was based on nothing more than Star Wars.

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The ‘science’ that Google relies on

Under the emphatic headline ‘This has to stop,’ my good friend, bestselling author Arielle Ford (The Soulmate Secret), posted an article claiming that Google was burying Alternative Medicine sites to ‘protect people against false claims.’

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The thyroid tragedy

Some 20 million Americans—or one in every 16—and one in 20 British people suffer from some form of thyroid disease. That’s a medical tragedy, no doubt, but the bigger tragedy is that almost two-thirds have no idea that they are affected—and in the majority of instances, nor do their doctors.

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Where competition begins

I was speaking to a colleague recently, who announced that he couldn’t wait for his children to be out of primary school and into the British equivalent of high school.

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All in your head

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis, or ME, has such strange physical manifestations—everything from severe and unexplained physical and mental fatigue to memory loss, nervous system problems and even flu-like symptoms—that some scientists go as far as to label it the twenty-first century polio.

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Why it’s important not to tell the ‘truth’

In medicine and the wider world of alternative medicine, the fashion now is for healers of every variety to deliver the truth and the whole truth to their patients so that they will not continue under ‘false pretenses.’

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Unbreaking the social contract

After witnessing the debates for Democratic presidential candidate in the US and those for Conservative prime minister in the UK, I’m struck by one glaring omission in any discussion of what’s needed to fix the terrible polarization afflicting both countries.

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The politics of rage

The other night, my husband Bryan Hubbard and I were watching Donald Trump’s first rally in Orlando, Florida, attended by some 20,000 people. But what was most interesting was not what was going on inside, but what was going on outside.

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Desperate measures

I have a decidedly love-hate relationship with antibiotics. On the one hand, I have to admit that I owe my life to them. In 1942, when my mother was 24, her dentist unwisely extracted a tooth while she had the flu. Within days, her neck ballooned with a streptococcus infection, and she was rushed to the hospital.  My father, then her fiancé, wept helplessly at her bedside while priests filed past him after administering the last rites.

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Out of the mouths of babes

Yesterday, I read a shocking statistic by One Poll of 2000 British adults ages 18-55, commissioned by The School of Health. It was polling their thoughts about climate change, and it found that three-quarters believe the biggest crisis facing humanity these days is climate change.

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It’s only fair

Much is being made of the idea of fairness in our modern politics, and to many people, notably many Democratic contenders for the presidency and the Labour party in the UK ‘fairness’ equals redistribution of wealth.

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Mother Nature’s medicine

Governments around the world have finally come around to admitting the obvious: air pollution isn’t very good for us. And it’s not just the particulate matter belched out in exhaust fumes. We’re talking about the estimated 80,000 chemicals in our food, air, water and homes, all poisoning us in slow motion.

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All it takes is saying nothing

I thought it ended with Joe McCarthy and his Red Scare of the early 1950s, one of the more shameful eras in American history, when free speech was truly silenced and thousands of innocent reputations destroyed.

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A healer’s thoughts: the best medicine

Surgeons like to play music during surgery to stay alert during the meticulous, tedious work they have to do – often for hours at a stretch. Recently I was amazed to learn that one of the favorites on the playlist of most heart surgeons is Queen’s ‘Another One Bites the Dust.’

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Looking at life from both sides now

‘Our country is broken, our society irreparably polarized.’ Is the word we’re hearing on the street all over America, Britain and much of the European Union, with not many ideas being floated about how to piece us all back together again.

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The big fat lie

Bad theories die hard, and one of those that seems to have the gift of eternal life is the cholesterol theory of heart disease. It was launched on faulty science, the famed Seven Countries Study conducted by American physiologist Ancel Keys, who claimed to show that countries whose population consumed a high-fat diet had a higher incidence of heart disease.

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Bouquets for Barbara

It’s strange to use the words ‘untimely death’ about someone who would have been 90 in December, but among all those talking about the ‘soul’ of Barbara Marx Hubbard and its deliberate ‘decision’ to move to the other side, I personally believe she wasn’t quite ready to leave this earthly plane.

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Do you see what I see? – probably not

Eugene Wigner, the Hungarian-born American physicist, one of the early pioneers of quantum physics who received a Nobel Prize for his contribution, famously argued that individual people view reality through a different lens.

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A shot of sanity

What disturbs me most is the sloppy thinking, the near universal presumption that certain facts, which aren’t facts at all, are now inviolate and cannot be questioned.

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Muscling In On Hip Pain

Dr Mitchell Yass is a man on a mission—to do nothing less than revolutionize orthopedic treatment, particularly when it comes to knee or hip replacements.

And for good reason. As a physiotherapist specializing in curing pain, his Florida treatment office is the last-chance saloon for people who have tried everything—from painkillers and surgery to chiropractic, osteopathy or acupuncture—all of which have failed to do much more than, at best, manage their pain.

Particularly frustrating for Mitch are the thousands of people who come to his office after having had a hip replacement surgery. They may have gotten a new hip, but the old pain is still there. They still can’t walk normally, and worst of all, many of their orthopedic surgeons blame it on the prosthetic device or the surgery itself.

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A different take on forgiveness

Amid all the near daily revelations about sexual predators, charges of racism deep political divisions that exists among political parties in America and Britain, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the concept of forgiveness.

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Reversing your genetic destiny

The latest discoveries in science are overturning a century’s worth of scientific belief about genetics, evolution and the backbone of modern biology. As Bruce Lipton has made famous, the new science of epigenetics has been devoted to the study of how we are shaped not from within, but largely by forces outside ourselves, a subtle mix of environmental influence on our biology, particularly the expression of our genes.

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Genes aren’t your destiny

In the mid-eighties, John Cairns, a British-born geneticist at Harvard’s School of Public Health, carried out an experiment that would set off one of the largest arguments in modern biology.

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It’s just mental

The whole of modern psychiatry rests on the platform that mental illness is, in fact, mental—a sickness that occurs in the brain. Nowhere is this more evident than with depression, a catch-all term used to describe individuals who are excessively sad, listless and lacking in the will to carry on with life as usual.

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Survival of the fictitious

A mosaic of influences — religious, political, economic, scientific, and philosophical — writes the story that we live by, but the main author is science. Science tells us who we are and from there we determine how we’re supposed to live. And much of science and ‘enlightened thinking’ from the 1700s to date has described humans as inherently selfish.

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Some new rules to live by

Since the millennium, commentators of every variety have been trying to get a handle on the collective significance of the continuous crises besetting us in modern times: banking crises, terrorist crises, political crises, sovereign-debt crises, climate-change crises, energy crises, food crises, ecological crises, manmade and otherwise.

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The trouble with walls

Henderson, the second largest city in Clark County, Nevada, has been burdened with heavy expectation ever since former President John F. Kennedy, in a throwaway comment, referred to the then sparsely populated upstart — a stone’s throw from Las Vegas — as a “city of destiny.”

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Talking the walk

A few years ago, I wrote why I won’t be participating in a Moonwalk for breast cancer, and worth saying it again. All across the world people are lining up to do the Walk the Walk Moonwalk—in May in the UK, in November in New York. The ads have been on the radio, making the battle cry, firing up the pink army troops: “For together, we will beat breast cancer.”

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What Californian gangs can teach Congress and Parliament

As I observe the stalemate between the American Republicans and Democrats over the Mexican wall and parliamentarians of all parties over Brexit, I can’t help thinking that all these great elected government officials could learn a thing or two from Orland Bishop and the rival young black gang members he is instructing how to relate to each other.

Bishop is doing this in Watts, southern Los Angeles, which formed the epicenter of America’s crack cocaine business. Such has been the rivalry between the main gangs, the Crips and the Bloods, that the wars between them and their offshoots claimed five times as many lives as did all the years of the troubles in Northern Ireland.

Bishop’s work is all about teaching his young gang members to move beyond “I” and “you” – or, more commonly, “us” and “them.”

In his seminal work I and Thou, Martin Buber claims that, in the main, we relate to other people as “I-It” – as objects utterly separate from — and hence subordinate to — ourselves. That is largely because, in any situation and in any relationship, we consider “I” to be separate and primary.

Our individual relationships have a lot to do with how we see ourselves in relation to rest of the world. When asked to describe themselves, North Americans or Europeans tend to stress their individual personality traits, exaggerate their uniqueness and focus on what they regard as most distinctive about themselves and their possessions, whereas East Asians stress their relationship to all social groups.

From a Western perspective, when we’re walking down a suburban street, the houses are naturally to our left; the cars and the street to our right. Everything is oriented in relationship to us, as though we are the sun and the rest of the universe our planets.

If I were to ask you to describe the first meeting of most of your friends, you would probably recount how you first cast about for points of mutual contact — evidence that you share the same economic level, spiritual beliefs, hobbies, family structure, or personal tastes. Most likely, you have chosen to connect exclusively with people who share something of you in them. We think of this superficial connection as providing us with a sense of shared identity.

We like people who are just like we are —who share our own values, our attitudes, our personalities and even our emotional dispositions — and we tend

to conflict most with people who are not like us. All of the leisure groups we join – from the Rotary club to the Parents and Teachers Association – are based on a shared passion, whether a community, game, God, or children. Our idea of connection is constantly seeking sameness. What this means, of course, is that the ultimate yardstick by which we gauge anyone else is our self.

This tendency to cluster with people who are most like we are only serves to divide us from others by reinforcing our individuality, our sense that our way is the best. We look always to recreate ourselves in another, which has as its basis a desire to reinforce that we are right.

Bishop uses a means of relating embodied in the Zulu greeting, “Sawubona.” Although usually translated as “I see you” (and made famous by the N’avi in the film Avatar), Sawubona literally means “we see you,” and the correct response is “Yabo sawubona” – “Yes, we see you, too.”

“It’s an invitation for us to participate in each other’s life,” he says. “It also obligates one to support the other – to give to each other what is needed for that moment of life to be enhanced.” This sounds something akin to the African concept of ubuntu — which, from its literal meaning “I am because you are,” suggests that, as co-creators of each other — both observer and observed — we have a commitment to provide to the other what is needed at that moment, including the deepest level of support.

Bishop tells his young people to regard each encounter with someone else as a personal challenge: “How do I have to be for that person to be who they are?”

“Through ‘Sawubona,’” says Bishop, “we are capable of experiencing the quality of another without judgment or prejudice. Sawubona is an openness to the highest good in a person.”

Once we view ourselves as a part of a bigger whole, we begin to act differently toward each other.

Bishop invites his young men to engage in indaba, which is loosely translated as “deep talk,” moving past superficiality to the deepest truth of who you are and what you dream for.

When you share this deeply, as he suggests, you find the common ground of the space between you – the place of your common humanity. “Shared meaning,” says Bishop, “allows for different perceptions – or realities – to exist together.”

Bishop coaches the young men in the art of speaking and listening deeply and from the heart — without being critical or judgmental. During this type of deep sharing, the pull of wholeness builds trust and loosens their attachments to entrenched positions.

The very intensity of the experience lends itself to the establishment of new alliances and a larger vision for the future. “They begin to understand that, if they unite in creativity, they expand,” he says.

In Watts, the Crips and the Bloods enjoyed a twelve-year truce. For years, Bishop has worked on helping them craft a future that they both can share.

If gangs in the worst neighborhood in America can come together, then surely Congress and Parliament can do the same.

Why this is a Happy New Year

If you’re like me, you watch the nightly news with a sense of dread. Even though I’m a journalist myself, I am dismayed by the increasing tendency of most news agencies to abandon any sense of objectivity and paint every situation in the worst possible light. According to the major news agencies on both sides of the Atlantic, Britain is about to fall off an economic cliff after failing to reach a reasonable deal with the EU, while in America is in constitutional crisis.

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How to create a miracle in these times of uncertainty

During this dark time of uncertainty, when all familiar systems seem to be collapsing around us, I take enormous comfort in one simple fact: the extraordinary regenerative power of small groups to create miracles.

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Healing dementia

While medicine wrings its hands over the explosion in cases of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and the inability of the pharmaceutical industry to produce an effective drug to counter them, a few forward-thinking doctors here and there are quietly carrying out new research showing that medicine has it all wrong about the cause of the disease or its possible cure.

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Won’t you be my neighbor?

A week after the US election that supposedly further polarized America came the news that one of the biggest box office draws in American movie theaters at the moment isn’t the latest action hero extravaganza or horror movie.

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When a simple prayer can stop a bullet

On Monday, November 12, I ran another Middle Eastern Peace Intention Experiment, this time targeting Yemen, and specifically, the port of Hodeidah (also spelled Al Hudaydah), considered one of the greatest humanitarian crises in modern times.

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Let less food be your medicine

When it comes to diet, it’s now clear that one size doesn’t fit all. Different people have different metabolic types, so meat that is life-saving to some and sheer poison to others.

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Dialing down rage in America

I read and weep about the rage and division poisoning America right now, particularly on the eve of the most fiercely battled mid-term elections in my memory.

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When doing for others saves your life

Lately, I’ve been investigating the healing power of acts of compassion on the person doing the giving, and the profound effect it can have on your immune system.

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Lighting the way

In 1970, the late German physicist Fritz-Albert Popp had been playing around with ultraviolet light, in an attempt to find a cure for cancer, when he made an unexpected discovery. Using a special machine that could count individual photons, the tiniest particles of light, Popp discovered that all living things, including humans, were emitting a tiny current of light waves, of a surprisingly high intensity.

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A sacred journey

Bryan and I are just home from the week-long Power of Eight retreat we held in a Tuscan villa. Twenty-nine attendees from the four quarters of the globe – from Vancouver and California to Dubai and Saudi Arabia and Australia, came primarily to heal themselves: of a medical problem, of grief, of an experience in their past – or to help them find a new path forward.

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Thank you! The Power of Eight hits No. 1 on Amazon

The Power of Eight came out in paperback this week, and I am thrilled to tell you that it’s already been a great success. We were in the top 50 bestsellers in Amazon all week, right up at the top of the charts for ‘Movers and Shakers. The book was also listed as No 4 as a Hot New Release generally, and the No 1 Hot New Release for both Science AND in Religion and Spirituality categories, as well as No 1 for New Thought.

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Breaking down the wall of sameness

I just read a story published by Psychology Today trying to find the reason why Americans (and people in other countries) are presently so polarized, and the conclusion is that entire fabric of America has changed so much that it’s overwhelmingly likely that you live in an area surrounded by people who agree with you.

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An airy tooth fairy

A subterranean revolution is taking place in dental medicine. To date, standard dentistry has operated as though teeth are insert substances entirely divorced from the rest of the body. Like carpenters or construction workers, dentists have hacked and drilled and pulled teeth, like so much rotting wood, the theory being that once the rot has set in and a tooth has decayed, the only route is to clear out the decay and try to salvage what’s left.

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When you say no to your doctor’s gloomy prognosis

If you’re the victim of a near-fatal car crash, Western medicine, with its array of high-tech gadgetry, is without parallel in its ability to put you back together again.

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United we stand

This week, I read a news article with the depressing fact that political affiliation now polarizes people in America far more than does anything else, including race, ethnic background or religion.

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When more hearts got broken open

One of the most moving workshops I have given in recent times took place in Istanbul, where Dr. Salah Al-Rashed, the Deepak of the Middle East, invited me to join 90 people from 14 Arab countries, who were part of a 10-day cultural holiday.

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A little gas and air

Increasingly, we are finding evidence that the greatest challenges in medicine get solved when we try to find simple solutions.

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We, the Change

I’m just back from two weeks of speaking events, workshops and an intensive conference, all with a common theme: how all of us can – and must – do our bit to change the world. It started with an extraordinary event in Washington Heights, New York, organized by my dear friend Jean Houston, who essentially invented the personal development movement.

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Why we shouldn’t have a self-help movement

I’m having major doubts about the benefits of self-help after observing the effects on the people in Power of Eight groups who don’t intend for themselves but intend for someone else in the group.

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A sharp solution to hearing loss

Once you’ve got it, you’ve got to learn to live with it—and strap on a device to help you do so. That’s the usual medical thinking around hearing loss, which currently afflicts one in five people—some 48 million—in the US, and one in six, or 11 million people in Britain.

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Where the healing never stops

For a decade I’d been the overprotective parent of the Power of Eight, as though it were a sacred amulet to be carefully protected from the wrong hands.

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When 1300 Jedi knights got together

I’m just back from the Science and Spirituality conference, held in Nanaimo, Vancouver Island, and what an amazing six-day event it was!  I shared the stage with my great buddies Joe Dispenza, Gregg Braden, Bruce Lipton and Lee Carroll, with a full house of 1300 squeezed into the auditorium. Each of us gave a workshop, and each of us but Joe (who had to leave for a retreat) spoke twice.

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Small but mighty

Everybody’s talking about them as the great white hope for overcoming every condition from chronic fatigue to Alzheimer’s disease. ‘They’ are the mitochondria of our cells—microscopic ‘organs’ in their own right that act like a teensy digestive system to convert the nutrients absorbed by the cell into energy, or ‘respiration’, which the cell requires to carry on its business. These little ‘organelles’ even have their own DNA, and besides producing energy, they play an active role in monitoring and maintaining regular communication between neurons.

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How to find your life’s purpose

Imagine if you woke up one morning and said to yourself, ‘Today I’m going to start ending world hunger.” Believe it or not, that’s exactly what my friend Lynne Twist did. She’s one of my favorite people in the entire world because she didn’t just think about doing something about it; even though she had three small children; she decided to commit to the idea.

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The results of the Middle Eastern Intention Experiment

We’ve now got back the scientific results of the Middle Eastern Peace Intention Experiment I ran on November 9, 2017. For those of you who haven’t heard about it, I’d been in touch with Tsipi Raz, an Israeli documentary maker, about carrying out an Intention Experiment for Jerusalem, and by some amazing fortuitous synchronicity, we decided to hold the experiment during the time that Dr. Salah Al-Rashed, the Deepak Chopra of the Middle East, was running a Middle Eastern summit remotely from a studio he’d acquired in the UK. He and Tsipi began meeting with me via Skype to plan an Intention Experiment for peace with both Arab and Israeli participants, made possible because of Salah’s ingenious technological set up.

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The results of the American Peace Intention Experiment

I’m so thrilled to announce that after a patient wait of six months, we were able to examine scientifically whether our American Peace Intention Experiment had an effect. It’s important to wait that long because you need to study months of data to see if we actually bucked a longer term trend.

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The secret life of pain

We all know what causes physical pain, don’t we? A part of your body gets crunched, cracked, stabbed, cut or burned, and you feel pain. Or, pain starts up when some body part gives way, like an overworked knee, or wears away, like cartilage, so that the parts no longer mesh together with ease.

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A new development on the cause of Type 2 diabetes

Join Bryan and I in the latest episode of the WDDTY Podcast. In this week’s episode we take a look at an exciting new development that identifies the underlying cause of Type 2 diabetes and the supplement that has been found to fix glucose metabolism. Researchers are beginning to look at the underlying causes of this disease rather than the manifestation of the disease itself.

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Metal fatigue

Medicine is baffled by Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and thus far, no matter how great the fanfare about amazing new breakthroughs, not one drug has managed to halt the slow but inevitable robbing of a person’s identity.

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Blame it on the back

There’s a medical problem out there that threatens to outstrip the cost of treatments for all types of cancers combined in terms of a major industry, and that’s back pain.

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Please let me hold your hand

When I was growing up, my favorite band was The Beatles, and the very first time I heard ‘I Wanna Hold Your Hand,’ I was struck by the dizzying feeling that those lyrics held some mystical significance for the world. Now, with new research from the University of Colorado at Boulder, I finally understand why.

The Colorado researchers have made the extraordinary discovery that when we hold hands or empathize with a loved one in pain, the very act of doing so is itself a pain-reliever, and the main reason we can lower the pain in the sufferer is that our brains go into synchrony.

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Discover what works (and what doesn’t) for heart disease, depression and more

Here’s another podcast about What Doctors Don’t Tell You from me and my husband and co-editor Bryan Hubbard. There are many revelations in this recording straight out of the latest research, and hot off our own presses, concerning heart disease and how most medical treatments prove no better than doing nothing (and what to do instead).  (more…)

Marching - and speaking – together

This weekend, an estimated half million people at very least– most of them teenagers – will be marching on Washington and many others in satellite marches all across America, all advocating for gun control, school safety and solutions to mass shootings.

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The unfairness pill

We’re living in unfair times – one of the most unfair in recent history.

And now my husband Bryan Hubbard may have come up with a reasonable answer as to why.

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Brains on fire

Much of modern psychiatry rests on the assumption that mental illness is a biological or genetic disease. Nowhere is this more evident than with serious conditions like depression, bipolar disorder or even schizophrenia—all catch-all terms used to describe individuals who supposedly have lost contact with reality and suffer from delusions, hallucinations, illogical thought processes or generally disturbed and even suicidal thoughts or behaviour.

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The start of an evolutionary movement

It’s only been 10 days since the February 14 Parkland, Florida school shooting, where 17 high school students were killed by ex-student Nikolas Cruz at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, and already we have a well-oiled evolutionary movement going.

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Germ warfare

Blaming health conditions on bugs like bacteria or viruses has severely fallen out of fashion. We look for lifestyle causes of illness, whether diet or lack of certain important nutrients or lack of exercise, too much processed, sugary foods—something we’re not doing right.

In our zeal to identify Big Pharma or Big Food as the cause of all our ills, we forget one still an important source of illness: bugs, in the form of powerful viruses and bacteria.

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Message in a Bottle

For many years, I’ve been carrying out my own informal experiments with water in my Power of Eight workshop groups, intrigued by scientific evidence suggesting that water is a tape recorder.

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The power of getting off of yourself

At one point, after witnessing thousands of people being healed in Power of Eight groups or as part of my large Intention Experiments, I began to consider that another powerful force might be responsible for all the miracles that I hadn’t accounted for: the rebound power of praying for other people.

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A fast-track to the miraculous

For nearly 10 years, I’d been trying to discover why Power of Eight groups are so powerful, not only for the receivers but also for the senders.  And in April 2015, I got my opportunity, when Dr. Guy Riekeman, then president of Life University, the world’s largest chiropractic university, volunteered the university’s services to study what was going on in my Power of Eight groups.

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Revolution, 2018-style

When I was growing up, revolution was a noisy, messy and very public business.  People like Abbie Hoffman and other members of ‘Woodstock Nation’ exhorted followers to get involved in street fights and mass protest, clash with the police at anti-war demonstrations, set fire to a community, set up guerrilla media like underground presses, or even risk charges of treason by handing over secret documents to the press, as analyst Daniel Ellsberg did with the Pentagon Papers about the Vietnam war.

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Why I am hopeful for 2018

Everywhere I look, I see wrecking balls:  worldwide cataclysmic natural climatic events that seem more appropriately to be found in disaster movies like 2012; the collapse or wobbling of many of the political structures and systems our generation has taken for granted; massive global unrest; a great deal of nuclear sabre-rattling.  But I’m taking all of this as a positive sign.

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The original power of twelve

The idea of placing people into small groups started out as a crazy whim of mine during a workshop I ran in 2008, just to see what would happen if group members tried to heal one of their group through their collective thoughts. All I knew at the time was what I didn’t want, which was to pretend that I could help people manifest miracles.

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We need a barn

How to counter the tribalism engulfing America and much of Europe at the moment, which is fomenting racism and huge civil unrest?  An excellent article just published in Aljazeera by William G. Moseley, a professor and chair of geography at Macalester College in Minnesota, argues that in promoting tribalism, Trump and the current Republican party in America are overtly tapping into and exploiting our fear of ‘the other.’

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A better way to heal Jerusalem

On November 9, we witnessed a historic first when many Arabs and Israeli Jews sent love and forgiveness to each other during our Middle Eastern Peace Intention Experiment. But now many are wondering whether all that good will is about to be blown up after US President Donald Trump’s announcement to make Jerusalem the de facto capital of Israel by moving the embassy there.  Violence is already erupting in Jerusalem as the Palestinians react with a sense of betrayal and fury.

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Peace on Earth

We’ve finally got back the video of my Middle Eastern Peace Intention Experiment, and I urge you to watch it for what it shows about the power of group intention to melt the hardest of hearts and heal the greatest divisions, among individuals or indeed an entire people.

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Giving thanks to the ‘Not me’ Generation

This Thanksgiving, I want to give thanks for the ability to give to others, which sounds like a rather sappy Hallmark card kind of sentiment, so bear with me here.

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History made yesterday

The Middle Eastern Peace Intention Experiment ran yesterday, and what a historic event it was. We started late, largely because we had to wait 10-15 minute for Smart Ways Studios to reload their server, but once we did, there on nine screens were people from all over the Middle East – Arabs and Israelis – for the first time.

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Announcing: Our Power of Eight Community site is now LIVE

I am thrilled to announce that our Power of Eight Community site is now up and running, and a perfect place for you to create or join Power of Eight groups: www.lynnemctaggart.com/forum

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The first results of the American Peace Intention Experiment: life-transforming effects

I’ve been reading the surveys of the participants of our American Peace Intention Experiment, and it’s clear that, once again, something about praying in a group causes deep, possibly permanent psychological transformation in many participants and improvements that radiate out into their daily lives.

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The Holy Instant: the American Peace Intention Experiment

I’m studying the thousands of our participants in the Peace Intention Experiment who answered my survey thus far (keep ‘em coming), and what’s clear is that the experiences of our participants mirror those of all our earlier experiments.

The participants in the American Peace Intention Experiment are talking about experiencing a unity consciousness, plus healings, rejuvenation, amazing renewals in every regard.  And that all has to do with the intense mystical state they get placed into when they do group intention.

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Intention in a different dimension

Even the most progressive frontier scientists struggle to explain so many of our cognitive feats, such as where memories or stored, or how our brains access information beyond the senses and, most particularly, how our thoughts can affect things and people outside of ourselves.

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How to create peace in your own life

Why, some of you have asked, should you devote a half hour of the next six days, starting tomorrow, sending intention to some city in America for the American Peace Intention Experiment?

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A sneak preview of the American Peace Intention Experiment

With just about a week to go before the historic American Peace Intention Experiment kicks off on September 30, GAIA TV, who have kindly sponsored the event, has prepared a little trailer.  Here’s a taste of what you can expect.  We’ll be sending intention for peace to the most violent place in America, but you’ll also be meeting many people from Power of Eight groups who have experienced their own incredible effects from group intention, and you’ll have an opportunity, in this experiential webcast, of experiencing those effects for yourself.

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How to prepare for the American Peace Intention Experiment

Dear Friends

By now you know that on Sept 30-October 5, I’m running the largest peace Intention Experiment that’s ever been conducted and we are targeting America, which sure needs our help.

And I hope you’ve signed up. (If not, go to www.americanintentionexperiment.com and do so.  It’s totally free.)

But until it kicks off  it’s a good idea to prepare for the experiment to maximize your own experience.

In my work with large and small group intention, I’ve discovered and documented amazing rebound effects when people get together to pray/intend in small groups of eight.  When people send intention for peace, they’re lives become more peaceful and often healed.

The best way I can explain this to you is by showing you a recent video.

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Why run an American Peace Intention Experiment?

When people ask me why I’m running a Peace Intention Experiment for America, I tell them about something extraordinary and untoward that happened during the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

Like most Americans, I’d been forced to revisit the horror of September 11, 2001, on every anniversary for those past nine years, as every television channel relentlessly replayed the collapse of the twin towers.

With the 10th anniversary looming in the summer of 2011, I grew determined to offer up an alternative.

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Go for the burn – in your head

Rocky Bleier, former running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers, used intention to help the Steelers win the Super Bowl. His technique was to saturate his mind with the details of specific plays. He carried out mental rehearsals in the morning, before the team meal and last thing before drifting off to sleep every day of the two weeks before a game.

He also found it reassuring to run through the entire catalogue of moves one final time just before play. While sitting on the bench, he again rehearsed some 30 runs and 30 passes. No matter what the field threw up to him that day, he was determined to be ready.

Any modern coach of a competitive sport routinely offers training in some form of mental rehearsal, and often it’s touted as the decisive element separating the elite sportsperson from the second-division player.

National-level soccer players, for instance, are more likely to use imagery than those who remain at the provincial or local levels. Virtually all Canadian Olympic athletes use mental imagery.

The most successful internal rehearsal involves imagining the sports event from the athlete’s perspective as though he or she is actually competing. It amounts to a mental trial run. The athlete envisages the future in minute detail as it is unfolding. Champion athletes forecast and rehearse every aspect of the situation, and the steps they should take to overcome any possible setbacks.

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Brains on fire

By the end of the twentieth-century, monks had become the favorite guinea pigs of the neuroscience laboratory. Scientists from Princeton, Harvard, the University of Wisconsin and the University of California–Davis wired up monks to state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and studying the effects of intensive, advanced meditation.

Monks offer scientists an opportunity to study whether years of focused attention stretch the brain beyond its usual limits. Does practice enable you to become a bigger and better transmitter of intention?

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Re-doing our past

One of the most basic assumptions about intention is that it operates according to a generally accepted sense of cause and effect. If A causes B, then A must have happened first. This assumption reflects one of our deepest beliefs, that time is a one-way, forward-moving arrow,  the most tangible evidence is the physical evidence of our own aging; first we are born, then we grow old and die. We think that the consequence of our intentions can only occur in the future. What we do today cannot affect what happened yesterday.

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It doesn’t take a war

I was watching the BBC news the other day, which featured a man in his nineties, who’d just written his second novel 50 years after the first one. Naturally, the BBC presenters were interested in why he felt compelled, all these years later, to write again.

The author had set the book in 1940 in Britain, when the country was faced on all sides by a powerful enemy and was ill-prepared for war.  He’d lived through it all, and decided that before he died it was vital that he relate, on record, what it was like at that time.

So what was it like, the presenters asked.

‘Fantastic,’ he replied.

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It's time to stop rewarding the bad

It’s time to stop rewarding the bad

 The result of the latest British election, which ended up with a hung Parliament, and no clear majority, is a neat metaphor for why our current system is collapsing, and a clear direction about what needs to replace it.

In case you don’t follow British politics, the Conservative Party had planned to carry on with a ‘hard’ Brexit and a number of hard choices in an austerity program intent on balancing the budget, while Labour promised to eliminate university tuition, nationalize public services and offer free childcare by vastly enlarging state control.

The British public didn’t give a mandate to either side for one simple reason: both were deeply unfair, and unfairness, pure and simple, was what this election – and all the recent elections in the US and even France – were all about.

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Mental starvation

Mental starvation

Entire industries in modern medicine—psychiatry, the drug industry, even many therapeutic arms of psychology—are predicated on the idea that chronic, crippling stress, anxiety and a number of other forms of so-called mental illness are incredibly tough nuts to crack, requiring years of strong medication that, at best, can only control symptoms.

In fact, psychiatrists in America have lately abandoned any attempts at talking cures and are now just the people who dole out the drugs.

Several years ago, The New York Times interviewed one prominent psychiatrist who confessed that his current patient load had swollen to 1,200 because he could treat them in 15-minute meetings that mostly consist of adjusting their prescriptions. 

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How to stop growing terrorists

How to stop growing terrorists

What on earth possesses someone to become a suicide bomber or a terrorist?

For years I’ve been mystified about the thought process of, say, a Palestinian like Hanifah, beautiful and intelligent, a woman with a law degree, a one-year-old daughter and everything to live for, when she walks into the Israeli school gymnasium, where she worked as a teacher’s aid, and detonates the bombs strapped around her body, killing three children and injuring five others?

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Rushing toward a burning plane

In 1992, I got held up in a store robbery.  I was with my daughter, Caitlin, then age 3, and we were in a north London health store, of all places.  The health store had a little café in the back, where we’d often take time from a shopping trip to go to have a tea and a biscuit.

We’d gone to the ladies’ room, and as soon as we came out, a guy in his 30s in a khaki jacket flashed a handgun at us and a few others in the store and said, “You – get in here now.”

At first I thought it was a joke – so completely surreal is it to see anyone in the UK holding a gun.

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A big mental adjustment

A big mental adjustment

Despite being the world’s most popular form of alternative treatment, chiropractic has lately had a bad press, particularly in the UK.

It began when Simon Singh, the self-appointed attack dog on all things alternative, decided to promote his book Trick or Treatment: Alternative Medicine on Trial by writing an article in The Guardian in 2008 specifically targeting chiropractors and their various claims.

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What is fake news?

Broadcast journalism has landed many low blows before when it comes to alternative views about medicine. I was eight months pregnant with our first child when we launched WDDTY, and a few moments before I was due to have a live debate with a media doctor, he leaned over and murmured, sotto voce: ‘Did you know that your obstetrician was up on charges for malpractice?’

It wasn’t true – my doctor is well-known natural birth specialist – but who does this to a pregnant woman?  Answer:  somebody with an agenda.

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The Re-selling of Gardasil

A friend of mine’s daughter – out of nowhere -  has suddenly been laid low with a strange sort of chronic fatigue. It’s been called all sorts of things – Epstein-Barr, ‘kissing disease,’ but privately I suspect something else.  She is the only daughter among our friends of young women of the same age who had the ‘cervical cancer’ vaccine.

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Thinking larger

No one doubts that we’re social creatures, designed to share food and shelter, but last week I came across some evidence in evolutionary theory suggesting that we’ve also been designed to share our thoughts.

Michael Tomasello, co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, has written The Cultural Origins of Human Cognition, a book with a fascinating theory: that people have the power not only to share attention but to understand and imitate and hold someone else’s intention.

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Back to the future

To eat or not to eat—that is the question. Or, to put it another way, what is the perfect diet for health, perfect weight and longevity?

In the close to three decades since Bryan and I have been publishing WDDTY, we’ve seen (and, in many cases, seen off) the Cambridge Diet (a very low-calorie diet), the F-Plan Diet (F is for fibre), the Atkins Diet (one of the first low-carb diets), the Hip and Thigh Diet (more very low-cal), the Zone and Montignac (two variations on a low-carb theme), the 5:2 Diet (intermittent fasting, or eating less food two days a week) and now the Paleo Diet (a grain-free, dairy-free, refined sugar- and carb-free diet of ‘traditional’ whole foods our ancestors presumably would have eaten).

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Of dirty medicine and double-standards

Last night I went to a screening at London’s Curzon Soho of the film JUST ONE DROP (www.justonedropfilm.com), a great new film about homeopathy, which miraculously didn’t get banned or trolled.

This professional, eight-year effort attempted to be quite even-handed, while featuring many compelling and documented success stories.

There was a child with autism who began to speak, make eye contact and connect with his parents only once he’d been treated with homeopathy, with the before and after home videos to prove it.  There was a fellow whose MRSA was successfully overcome not by antibiotics but by homeopathy, and who also had the before and after photos to demonstrate it.

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A cleaner sweep

My magazine What Doctors Don’t Tell You owes its start to dental fillings—my dental fillings.

I’d had bad teeth as a kid—the product of the average heavily processed, high-sugar, American diet—and by the time I was a teenager, there weren’t many of my teeth, other than the few at the front, that weren’t covered in metal.

In my early 30s, I developed a load of unexplained, seemingly unrelated symptoms that worsened over the following months.

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The Miami Korotkov Water Experiment

Last Friday, I was in Florida, host to a miracle.

During my keynote speech, I planned to do another water Intention Experiment. I’d set up an Intention Experiment with the Russian physicist Konstantin Korotkov, a professor at what is now called the Russian National University of Informational Technology, Mechanics and Optics.

The plan was to see if my audience of 1000 at the World Happiness Summit in Miami could, in some way, affect a bottle of water sitting in his laboratory in St. Petersburg, Russia.

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What makes for true happiness

A survey just got published last week showing that the biggest regret expressed by an overwhelming majority of people on their deathbeds is that they didn’t live what they considered a life of purpose and meaning.

Since I’m speaking at the World Happiness Summit today I thought I’d look at what a life of meaning actually means and what about it makes for true happiness.

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The worst of times, the best of times

Last week, I read an article by Timothy Egan in the New York Times International edition which convinced me that all the political upheaval presently in the Western world is an incredibly good thing.

Egan headed off to a ‘Search for Meaning’ festival at Seattle University in Washington state, convinced that he’d be among a ragtag handful of overly earnest attendees.

In fact, the event was sold out with standing room as people crammed on top of each other listen to keynotes on finding meaning in a time of change and disruption.

‘Face it,’ wrote Egan about America, ‘We have become a lazy, aging, fairly ignorant democracy.’

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Fighting off the lady killer

Medicine, we’re told, is feeling victorious about beating breast cancer, now that the incidence of heart disease has overtaken it as the number-one lady killer.

This victory celebration may be premature. While deaths may have decreased by 35 per cent since the early 1970s, the incidence of this form of cancer is going up—by a projected 2 per cent. Breast cancer still accounts for a third of all cancers reported in women; it affects one in eight women and kills about one in six of women diagnosed with the disease every year.

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Donald Trump, vaccine whistleblower?

Like many people, I approach the inauguration of Donald Trump as President of the US with extreme trepidation, save for one fact: his public stance on vaccination.

Among the parade of people who have been heading in and out of Trump Tower in the last months were Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Andrew Wakefield.

Wakefield, you may recall, was the much maligned British gastroenterologist, whose research had first uncovered a possible link between the triple vaccine and the development of autism and gastrointestinal disorders.

Wakefield sacrificed his career to publicize the MMR–autism connection; after a complete vilification by the press, the British General Medical Council removed his license to practice medicine and he moved to America, to carry on his research.

Kennedy, an environmental lawyer and activist, is also an outspoken critic of current vaccine policy.

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My New Year’s resolutions for 2017

Now that we’ve moved past one of the more tumultuous years in my lifetime, but are about to welcome the most controversial of American administrations, I’ve decided that the ride may continue to be bumpy for a while, but that I can do my part to smooth things over by adopting a few resolutions.

Here’s my own New Year’s resolution for 2017:

Read many sources of news and many points of view.

I used to avoid daily newspapers because I didn’t want to allow the catalog of bad news and calamity to poison my system. I could also count on the fact that if I shut my eyes for a while, life as I knew it wouldn’t. disappear.

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How to reclaim America

I am watching America self-immolate during the presidential election primaries from the vantage point of the UK, where I live. What I most thank Donald Trump for is that he is inadvertently exposing everything that is most odious and unworkable about the US political process and, in doing so, just may force that conversation to change.

I am watching America self-immolate during the presidential election primaries from the vantage point of the UK, where I live. What I most thank Donald Trump for is that he is inadvertently exposing everything that is most odious and unworkable about the US political process and, in doing so, just may force that conversation to change.

This week, the second of a four-part BBC documentary analyzing the Obama presidency focused on how Obama managed to pass Obamacare, his health-insurance-for-all bill, which passed the two houses by just a few votes.

Taken over by sound bites
In the run up to the vote on the bill, Republicans who opposed the bill didn’t do so with reasonable debate. Instead, they looked to Frank Luntz, a Republican pollster, who held focus groups among citizens, searching for just the right sound bite that would stick to Obama’s bill and kill it.

Frank held focus group after focus group, listening to all sorts of ordinary citizens hold forth about their notions of the bill until he found exactly the right phrase, which turned out to be ‘government takeover.’

That concept is utter anathema to most Americans, and congressmen like John Boehner made sure to pepper every future utterance about the bill with that highly charged phrase.

Before long, people were taking to the streets in protest that Obama and his bill were going to represent a siege against ordinary Americans and their life savings.

At London’s Heathrow, I stood in line next to an American woman, who informed me, with utter certainty, that Obama was now taking calls directly from the poor while sitting in the Oval Office and was opening up his checkbook, right there and then.

This is not an argument on behalf of the Democrats or Republicans, or even on behalf of Obamacare.

This is an argument against the crass and deceitful way in which the Republicans tried to kill the bill, which is the crass and deceitful way that all politics is carried out in America.

And now those tactics are being employed against both parties, largely through the person of Donald Trump. Trump is willing to use every last dirty tactic that politicians have long used against the other side, and neither party likes this one little bit.

Another Occupy
Strangely, Trump’s popularity, can be seen as a continuation of the Occupy movement, both social movements that have grown out of fact that America is no longer a society in any sense of the word.

Several years ago I predicted on these pages that America was ripe for revolution like the Arab Spring because it had become of the most unfair societies in the West. As I write in The Bond, fairness is so fundamental to the human experience, so much a part of our hardwiring, that when situations are manifestly unfair, as they are right now in America, everyone loses, rich and poor.

And things will only get worse, unless the whole of American society begins to reframe itself and make a contract to start working together for the common good.

At the time, I put forward my wish list of positive suggestions for the street warriors to rally behind in order to recover the soul of America.

I think it’s worth offering them again. With conventional candidates are having to fight for every last vote, ordinary politicos are likely to start listening to the people. Here’s your best shot at getting your voice heard.

10 ways to reclaim America

1. Demand a month-long hiatus from Republican-Democratic politicking in Congress. Insist that for at least that period of time, Democrats and Republicans declare a moratorium on name-calling, demonizing, and president-bashing, and instead spend their time learning to speak and listen deeply from the heart, with the kind of ideals that compelled them to enter politics in the first place. Demand that whole of Congress agree on at least one large goal that will help each and every American and act as a rallying cry to unify our polarized population. The evidence shows that working for a larger ‘we’re all in this together’ goal is a highly successful way to end prejudice and bring people together.

2. Listen to the party you oppose. Everyone, from the Sanders supporters to members of the Tea Party, agrees that America is going to the dogs; they simply disagree on the solutions. In a recent study carried out by Harvard Business School, when asked to design their ideal society for wealth distribution, both Republicans and Democrats came up with a markedly similar picture for a just society.

Guess which country it resembled? ‘Socialist’ Sweden, where there is far less division between rich and poor than there is in America. Although we may be polarized in many areas, all of us — rich, poor, Democrat, Republican — broadly agree on what is fair. Out of what both groups dream in common, we can fashion one goal to work on together.

3. Learn to be more politically sophisticated in your thinking and stop thinking in black and white/either-or dichotomies. Societies aren’t either free-rein capitalism or full-on communism. There are endless shades of grey in between. Stop applying the term ‘socialism’ to any kind of initiative that attempts to provide basic rights to society. Working together as a community and providing for the community is not socialism. It does not require redistribution of income or across-the-board sameness.

4. Don’t confuse liberty with exclusive self-interest or freedom from responsibility to the whole. Do you really want to live in a place resembling the post-apocalyptic America of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road – where it is you and your gun against the world? Or would you rather have a place where your neighbor and their neighbors are watching your back, too? If so, we need to band together as a society, with aspects that are good for the whole, not simply good for number 1, on every front. That may require some individual sacrifice in time and money, but not your life’s savings. And you’ll reap the benefits, too.

5. Fully understand our founding principles. Actually read The Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution, the Gettysburg address, and other iconic statements of American principles. From there you will learn that America was founded on a platform of fairness, not simply liberty. We severed British sovereignty over the American colonies because we believed that we were victim of a litany of unfair laws and practices.

Our rationale for this insurrection, as we announced in the Declaration of Independence, was the ‘self-evident’ truth of the most fundamental type of fairness. Much is made of our individual inalienable right to equal ‘life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,’ but the real point of the argument is the need for justice and equality. Our founding fathers mainly envisioned a fair society of responsibility ¬¬– one to the other.

6. Stop creating external bogeymen. We storm around the world acting like global policemen when our own house is not in order. Most of the time, we – with our blinkered vision about what’s best for everyone else and our sense of entitlement to the world’s resources - are the problem. I travel the world, and I’m sad to say that a good deal of the world can’t stand us. Ask why. It’s not jealousy, believe me.

7. Begin a huge re-think of our emphasis on profits over social responsibility. Have you listened to an American-made rock song or watched a rock video lately? Most are pornographically explicit, and being continuously played to young children and teenagers, with no monitoring whatsoever on content. Just who is this serving besides the shareholders? Ditto on pharmaceutical company advertising, to cite just two examples.

8. Only read or watch a media free from corporate influence. The media is largely the puppet of corporate America right now. Stick with online alternatives. There are still a few left.

9. Don’t wait for the people in charge to ‘fix’ things. Get your neighbors together. Look together around your neighborhood and community. How are your schools? Your hospitals? What needs doing? How can you make use of the people around you to fix what needs fixing?

10. Vow that change will start with you first. Scientific studies shows that in any society, if a culture of turn-taking falls apart with too many taking too much, all it requires is a small group of individuals committed to strong reciprocity to ‘invade’ a population of self-interested individuals and re-establish fairness and generosity. Your acts of fairness and generosity will create a ripple effect that will be heard around the world.

Now let me know your wish list in reclaiming America.

Making a clean breast of it

Doctors have finally admitted that while just in case double mastectomies rates have trebled over the past decade, having a healthy breast removed if you have cancer in the other one will not increase your chances of survival. In fact, it’s likely to do more harm than good.

Doctors have finally admitted that while just in case double mastectomies rates have trebled over the past decade, having a healthy breast removed if you have cancer in the other one will not increase your chances of survival. In fact, it’s likely to do more harm than good.

A new study by Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, US, shows that the majority of women would never have developed cancer in the healthy tissue, and that by removing the breast, they have only left themselves open to the complications of surgery.

In the study, the Boston researchers studied 500,000 breast cancer patients with stage 1 to stage 3 cancer in one breast between 1998 to 2012 to see if the disease returned or appeared in the other breast. They also compared the health and survival of those who’d had a single mastectomy, those who’d had the double mastectomy and those who’d had breast conserving surgery.

In fact, there was no survival advantage in getting even a single breast removed. The researchers found the same survival rates between those women who’d opted for breast-conserving surgery (like a lumpectomy) as those who’d had one or two breasts removed.

Nothing new
This story appeared last week in the headlines in the US and the UK as if it were shock-horror news.

But in fact, six years ago, the Cochrane Breast Cancer Group carried out a review of 39 studies involving some 7,000 women who'd had prophylactic (just-in-case) double mastectomies, some on two healthy breasts and others with cancer in one breast who chose to remove the other, healthy breast as a preventative measure.

The single well-controlled study looking at the difference between women who’d had a healthy as well as a cancerous breast removed showed no overall survival advantage.

What makes the Boston study particularly concerning is that rates of double mastectomies have trebled in the last decade, from 3.9 per cent in 2002 to 12.7 per cent in 2012.

This may be a possible ‘Angelina Jolie’ effect, after the actress announced she was having both healthy breasts removed after her doctors disclosed that her genetic profile rendered her highly likely to get breast cancer.

Risks of surgery
One aspect of this procedure that never gets discussed are the various risks women face when having just-in-case breast or ovarian surgery, factors that that actually increase the risks of getting cancer far more than so-called 'faulty' genes.

There is first of all, the not inconsiderable risk of surgery itself. Mehra Golshan, MD, distinguished Chair in Surgical Oncology at Brigham and Woman’s Hospital and senior author of the recent study, made mention of the downside of having a just-in-case operation as including “prolonged recovery time, increased risk of operative complications, cost, the possible need for repeat surgery, and effects on self image.”

The Cochrane study spelled it out more starkly, showed that up to 49 per cent of all the women opting for just-in-case double mastectomies suffered complications requiring repeat surgery.

Implant links with cancer
Furthermore, breast implants have been linked to a rare type of breast cancer known as 'anaplastic large-cell lymphoma' (ALCL), a form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, increasing risk of contracting the disease by 18 times. JAMA, 2008; 300: 2030-5

Now that Jolie has chosen to have her ovaries removed and undoubtedly is taking HRT, the latest evidence from the major American Women’s Health Initiative study confirms that women who take the standard oestrogen/progestin HRT are more likely to develop breast cancer and die from the disease and 60 per cent more likely to die from any cause.

Living tissues like breasts are not like a car part that can be replaced with impunity. I’m still waiting for doctors to make a clean breast of the very real contribution that breast implants and artificial hormones make to the soaring incidence of breast cancer.

The whole tooth

As the first research director of the National Dental Association (precursor of the American Dental Association) Weston Price, was, first and foremost, a dentist, and so he saw health from the point of view of an open mouth. And what he began to take note of was that indigenous people around the world, who’d always had robust good health and straight, fine teeth, were getting cavities.

As the first research director of the National Dental Association (precursor of the American Dental Association) Weston Price, was, first and foremost, a dentist, and so he saw health from the point of view of an open mouth. And what he began to take note of was that indigenous people around the world, who’d always had robust good health and straight, fine teeth, were getting cavities.

Those inhabitants still consuming a native diet had virtually no tooth decay, but those adopting an imported 'Western' diet, even a supposedly healthy one, had smaller jaws, more overcrowded teeth and early signs of the chronic dietary diseases so characteristic of industrialized nations.

Very different diets
Although all the diets were essentially low-carb, high-fat and high-protein, Price discovered a huge variation in the macronutrient intakes across healthy native communities.

The Inuits and Native Americans, for example, ate very large quantities of fish because they lacked the enzyme that can manufacture the vital omega-3 fats docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) from other types of foods. But Native Americans from inland rural communities generally had the enzyme, so they were able to produce omega-3s from foods other than fish. They were so biologically different from the Intuits that their bodies handled macronutrients differently.

The Inuits of Alaska consumed a diet rich in fats and oils, and low in fruit and vegetables and a high consumption of omega-3-rich marine foods, whereas the Masai of East Africa ate mainly meat, blood and milk, including up to 300 g a day of saturated fat, and the Samburus of East Africa drank 10 litres of full-fat milk a day, equal to up to 400 g of fat.

The Maori of New Zealand consumed a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet built around fish, kelp and roots, with protein representing more than 50 per cent of diet, while 64 per cent of the diet of the aborigines of Australia comprised animal foods. The saturated fat intake of the Polynesian Pacific Islanders, on the other hand, largely derived from coconuts.

None of these populations suffered from degenerative diseases like heart disease, diabetes or Alzheimer’s, and all had good teeth.

High fat vitamins
When Price tried to work out the common denominator between all these vastly diverse diets he concluded that besides being unprocessed, all contained a far higher animal-protein intake (up to 35 per cent of daily food); far greater fish and dairy consumption, resulting in four times the calcium and other minerals of a Western diet; and far higher fat intake (30-80 per cent of total diet).

But perhaps most significant of all, all these high protein and high fat diets provided these natives with 10 times the amount of the fat soluble vitamins – vitamin A. D and K – of Westerners.

Price realized something else even more significant after he returned home. Once he advised his dental patients to increase their intake of these fat soluble vitamins, their tooth decay began to reverse.

Dynamic reversal
That dental decay can be reversed is a well guarded secret in the dental community, which relies for its income on drill-and-fill solutions. However, new evidence by Australian research shows that dental decay can be easily overcome by simple measures.

A tooth, like a bone, is a dynamic substance which needs something more than an absence of sugar to thrive. Saturated fats perform critical functions in the body: protecting bony surfaces, cushioning internal organs, strengthening cell membranes, building and protecting the nervous system, brain and liver; and helping to protect against osteoporosis, to name but a few. Saturated fats also support the immune system.

The fact that the healthy teeth are dependent upon a healthy dose of fat is yet more evidence that the persistent belief among the medical community about the dangers of dietary fat of any sort is flawed and dangerous in itself.

A low-fat diet doesn’t just hurt our hearts and brains, it also hurts our teeth.

My body, my brain

If you’ve seen the movie Still Alice, you may come away with two takeaway messages. The first is that Julianne Moore deserved the Oscar she won for her masterful job of portraying a patient slowly succumbing to Alzheimer’s disease.

The second is that Alzheimer’s is entirely a genetically induced disease. If you’ve got it, resign yourself to a bad toss of the dice. Nothing you can do about it other than to wait for the long, forgetful goodbye.

If you’ve seen the movie Still Alice, you may come away with two takeaway messages. The first is that Julianne Moore deserved the Oscar she won for her masterful job of portraying a patient slowly succumbing to Alzheimer’s disease.

The second is that Alzheimer’s is entirely a genetically induced disease. If you’ve got it, resign yourself to a bad toss of the dice. Nothing you can do about it other than to wait for the long, forgetful goodbye.

Although the first statement may be true, the second is not. Alzheimer’s may have a genetic component, in terms of a familial tendency, but the evidence overwhelmingly supports the notion that brain fog of any variety is an environmentally induced disease, caused by lifestyle factors: too much sugar and processed food, too little fat, too many prescription drugs, too little exercise – in fact, too little of anything new in your life. And these effects can be largely reversed or at least improved by cleaning up these environmental factors.

One of the greatest environmental hazards are the numerous major classes of drugs that can bring on dementia. These include heart drugs, cholesterol-lowering drugs, sleeping pills, antidepressants, narcotics, stimulants, anticholinergic and antiepileptics.

Psycho-drugging

Psychologist Mike Dow cites statistics from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, that only 17 percent of American adults are considered to be in a state of “optimal mental health.”One American adult in ten takes some kind of medication to cope with depression - a figure that rises to one in four among American women in their 40s and 50s. A staggering one in five Americans take a prescription drug for a psychiatric illness. And Xanax, the drug of choice for anxiety, is the country’s most commonly prescribed drug.

As most people over the age of 50 are taking at least one prescription drug, and six or more a decade later, it’s small wonder that dementia is one of the world’s fastest-growing disorders, now absorbing one-third of the entire US Medicare bill. It’s now expected that one in four of us will have some form of dementia by the time we reach 80.

This giant problem, created in large part by the processed food and the pharmaceutical industries, is fundamentally a by-product of the refusal of our current medical system to consider the body a holistic entity or indeed to understand what actually makes for a healthy brain.

Knock-on effects

Consider the effects of statins and the entire ‘low-fat’ food industry on the workings of your grey matter. Although medicine used to believe that the master conductor of brain activity was the neurons, or nerve cells, that create and release neurotransmitters and electrical signals, this view needs to be revised by a more holistic view of the brain.

A more up-to-date view would appreciate that the brain works in its entirety through a web of activity between neurons and four varieties of glial cells. Glial cells, which surround the neurons, keep them in place, provide them with nutrients, and destroy and mop up pathogens. They also insulate one neuron from another and modulate the transmission of signals.

One major function of glial cells is to form myelin—the insulating sheath that covers every tentacle of a nerve cell—which is largely made up of lipid (fatty) tissue.

Yeon-Kyun Shin, a professor of biophysics at Iowa State University, recently went on record to say that high cholesterol is vital for good brain function, and a lack of cholesterol impairs the brain’s thinking ability and memory.

“If you deprive the brain of cholesterol, then you directly affect the machinery that triggers the release of neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters affect the data-processing and memory functions; in other words, how smart you are and how well you remember things,” he said.

An interconnected whole

In 1970, the late German physicist Fritz-Albert Popp stumbled upon the fact that humans emit a tiny current of photons, or light, from the DNA of every cell. He also discovered something else remarkable.

If a medicine was applied to one part of the body, a massive change occurred in the amount of light emitted not only from where he’d applied the agent, but also from other, more distant parts of the body. Popp soon recognized that this light as a communication channel within a living organism – a means of instantaneous, or ‘non-local’ global signalling.

Popp’s pioneering work affords us a glimpse of the body at work as an exquisite, interconnected whole. What affects one part affects every other part simultaneously. Whatever we atomize anything such as our arteries or even our brain – treating it as separate from the rest of us – we invite calamity.

Taking heart

About one in three of us can already predict what’s likely to give way first in our bodies: our hearts. Although cancer, stroke and even iatrogenic (medically induced) illness are close runners-up, heart disease is still the number one killer in the West.

About one in three of us can already predict what’s likely to give way first in our bodies: our hearts. Although cancer, stroke and even iatrogenic (medically induced) illness are close runners-up, heart disease is still the number one killer in the West.

And despite claims of tremendous strides made in cardiac treatment, major breakthroughs in prevention and a great deal of self-congratulation, cardiovascular disease – an umbrella term that includes coronary heart disease, heart attack, angina, heart failure and stroke – continues to knock off one person every 37 seconds in the US alone.

As a consequence, this epidemic has spawned entire industries among the food and pharmaceutical industries, the medical profession and a host of manufacturers: new diet regimes and a low-fat food industry; ever more sophisticated drugs and surgical procedures; and of course, ‘just-in-case’ preventive drugs like aspirin and statins, which now have developed into their own Fortune-500 industry.

The inconvenient truth is all these efforts are not making much difference in the statistics; heart disease in general still accounts for 40 per cent of all deaths.

Medicine’s red herring
The conventional medical view is that atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, is an inevitable result of smoking, lack of exercise and, above all, a high-fat diet.

Every year, Americans spend around $26 billion (£17 billion) on statin drugs and at least double that amount on low-fat foods, spreads and drinks (such as low-fat milk) to reduce levels of ‘bad’ artery-clogging LDL cholesterol.

The logic behind the ‘fat causes atherosclerosis’ theory, which forms the foundation of the entire monolith of medical treatment and prevention, is simple. Arteries become narrowed by deposits of cholesterol; fat in the diet contains cholesterol; so fat must cause atherosclerosis. The idea is so entrenched in the medical mind that the proposition is no longer a theory, but established fact.

The only problem is that the theory is manifestly wrong. As a consequence, so are most of the medical approaches to the epidemic.

High-fat and low cholesterol
Recent studies have confirmed what a minority of cholesterol skeptics have always suspected: high-fat foods don’t raise levels of cholesterol.

In a decade-long Brown University study of 3,630 middle-aged men and women in Costa Rica, who were split into two groups, those who’d had suffered a heart attack and the same number of healthy ‘controls’, whose hearts were fine, Brown University researchers discovered that both groups had consumed similar levels of dairy products like milk, cheese, yoghurt and butter, which are full of supposedly harmful saturated fats.

In fact, some of those in the healthy group chugged up to 593g of day of dairy – but their hearts didn’t mind. The researchers were forced to conclude that ‘the evidence is not there’ to support the fat-equals- heart disease theory.

Another study came up with a heretical conclusion: the ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol is actually good for you. Their study of 52 adults between 60 and 69 years who were in good health but not physically active found that those with high levels of LDL cholesterol developed the most lean muscle mass after vigorous work-out training.

As the head of the research team Steve Riechman put it: ‘The truth is, cholesterol is all good. You simply can’t remove all the “bad” cholesterol from your body without serious problems occurring. People often say “I want to get rid of all my bad cholesterol,” but the fact is, if you did so, you would die.’

Not living longer with statins
Some of the most telling evidence is information we’ve recently uncovered in What Doctors Don’t Tell You about statins. Danish researcher recently asked a highly inconvenient question: how much longer will you live if you take statins over the long term?

The answer, according to all the latest evidence? About four days.

There are essentially 10 major causes of heart disease, none of which includes high cholesterol. Sugar, trans fats, gum disease, low levels of certain vitamins like chromium – all these are the true culprits in heart ailments.

Sort out these problems with a simple change of diet and the addition of some supplements, and you are overwhelmingly likely to overcome your heart disease.

Do go gentle
Although medicine considers that any adversary as formidable as heart disease can be defeated only by the most sophisticated of drugs, surgery and medical gadgetry, many far more gentle alternative treatments are often more effective in treating all manner of heart conditions.

Alternative medicine, which often employs a holistic approach, even tackles one under-appreciated cause of heart disease: social isolation. For all its clever technology, modern medicine doesn’t take into account that many people with heart disease are literally dying of a broken heart.

Gravity: a Field effect

Gravity is the Waterloo of physics. Attempting to work out the basis for this fundamental property of matter and the universe has bedeviled the greatest geniuses of physics. Even Einstein, who was able to describe gravity extremely well through his theory of relativity, couldn’t actually explain where it came from.

Gravity is the Waterloo of physics. Attempting to work out the basis for this fundamental property of matter and the universe has bedeviled the greatest geniuses of physics. Even Einstein, who was able to describe gravity extremely well through his theory of relativity, couldn’t actually explain where it came from.

Over the years, many physicists, including Einstein, have tried to assign it an electromagnetic nature, to define it as a nuclear force, or even to give it its own set of quantum rules – all without success.

And now this week scientists believe they have the first step toward a solution, which they’ve announced to great fanfare: gravity waves, emanating from black holes.

There is one, more earth-bound theory about gravity that has never been properly explored. In 1968, the noted Soviet physicist Andrei Sakharov came up with an interesting theory, which turned the usual assumption on its head. What if gravity weren’t an interaction between objects, but just a residual effect?

In fact, what if gravity were an after-effect of the Zero Point Field, caused by alterations in the field due to the presence of matter?

All matter at the level of quarks and electrons jiggles because of its interaction with the Zero Point Field. One of the rules of electrodynamics is that a fluctuating charged particle will emit an electromagnetic radiation field. This means that besides the primary Zero Point Field itself, a sea of these secondary fields exists. Between two particles, these secondary fields cause an attractive source, which Sakharov believed had something to do with gravity.

Physicist Hal Puthoff, director of the Institute for Advanced Studies, has long pondered this notion. In his mind where physicists have been going wrong was in attempting to establish gravity as an entity in its own right. Instead, it should be seen as a sort of pressure.

He has long thought of gravity as a kind of long-range Casimir effect, with two objects which block some of the waves of the Zero Point Field becoming attracted to each other.

Or even a long-range van der Waals force, so named after a Dutch physicist called Diderik van der Waals, who discovered that forces of attraction and repulsion operate between atoms and molecules because of the way that electrical charge is distributed, like the attraction of two atoms at certain distances.

A particle in the Zero Point Field begins jiggling due to its interaction with the Zero Point Field; two particles, not only have their own jiggle, but also get influenced by the field generated by other particles, all doing their own jiggling.

The fields generated by these particles – which represents a partial shielding of the all-pervasive ground state Zero Point Field – causes the attraction that we think of as gravity.

Sakharov only developed these ideas as a hypothesis; Puthoff went further and began working them out mathematically. He demonstrated that gravitational effects were entirely consistent with Zero Point particle motion, or what the Germans had dubbed ‘zitterbewegung‘ or ‘trembling motion.’

Tying gravity in with zero-point energy solves a number of conundrums that have confounded physicists for many centuries.

• It answers the question of why gravity is weak and why it can’t be shielded (the Zero Point Field, which is ever-present, itself can’t be shielded).

• It explains why we can have positive mass and not negative mass.

• It brings gravity together with the other forces of physics, such as nuclear energy and electromagnetism, into one cogent unified theory – something physicists had always been eager to do but have always singularly failed at.

Decades ago Hal published his theory of gravity to polite and restrained applause. Although no one rushed duplicate his data, no one ridiculed him, even though what he’d been saying in these papers in essence counters the entire bedrock of twentieth-century physics.

In fact, no one said anything about it.

While it is laudable that physicists have detected ‘ripples in space-time’ emanating from the merger of black holes. But instead of looking into outer space for the solution to gravity, it’s time for them to look into empty space – the Zero Point Field – for a theory of everything.

May The Field be with you

Konstantin Korotkov, a professor of what is now called the Russian National University of Informational Technology, Mechanics and Optics (formerly St. Petersburg State University), has made his name on an improved version of Kirlian photography, claimed to capture the energy field of a living thing, which mirrored the state of a person’s health.

Konstantin Korotkov, a professor of what is now called the Russian National University of Informational Technology, Mechanics and Optics (formerly St. Petersburg State University), has made his name on an improved version of Kirlian photography, claimed to capture the energy field of a living thing, which mirrored the state of a person’s health.

Konstantin came up with a means of capturing this mysterious light in real time by stirring up the photons of a living system, stimulating them into an excited state so that they would shine millions of times more intensely than usual.

Jazzed up auras
He developed a mechanism, which he called the Gas Discharge Visualization (GDV) technique, which made use of state-of-the-art optics, digitized television matrices and a powerful computer, a blend of photography, measurements of light intensity and computerized pattern recognition. A computer program would then extrapolate from this a real-time image of the ‘biofield’ surrounding the organism and deduce from it the state of the organism’s health.

By the time we first made contact, Konstantin was 55 and a well-known public figure, who had lent the concept of human energy fields an air of legitimacy. He’d written five books on the subject, eventually attracting the attention of the Russian Ministry of Health, which recognized the importance of his invention in assessing health and diagnosing illness.

By 2007, the GDV device was widely used as a general diagnosis tool and as a means to evaluate a patient’s progress after surgery, and the Russian Ministry of Sport had begun to take notice of Konstantin and his machinery, even using it to assess the state of athletes training for the Olympics. Outside of Russia, thousands of medical practitioners were using his machines, a fact not overlooked by the US National Institutes of Health; indeed, a portion of a major NIH grant was to be used to investigate the ‘biofield’ using Korotkov’s equipment.

The launch of Sputnik
Lately, Konstantin has perfected a sensitive device he’d playfully christened ‘Sputnik’, after the first Soviet satellite space launch in 1957. His device is a bit like Roger Nelson’s entire Global Consciousness Project configuration rolled up into a single machine, as Konstantin claims that it is capable of measuring environmental influences on human emotion – and the reverse.

Sputnik had been developed as a specially designed antenna for his GDVs, which Konstantin likes to refer to as an ‘integral environment analyzer.’ Coupled with the information delivered by his GDV, the purpose of this highly sensitive device is to measure any changes in the atmosphere relative to any changes in the people occupying that space.

Konstantin claimed the little sensor could pick up the capacitance, or ability to store charge, of the environment through its extreme sensitivity to changes in environmental electromagnetic fields.

As human emotions are related to the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system, any changes in that system also change blood circulation, perspiration, and other functions, which consequently change the overall electrical conductivity of the body.

Our emotions change the Field
Aware of the vast body of evidence demonstrating the effect of solar activity, tectonic disturbances and tensions, and the ambient electromagnetic field on human health, Konstantin maintains that the reverse is also true: when a person experiences a change of emotion, it will affect the electricity of the environment, which in turn will be picked up by his Sputnik sensor.

“Changes in the functional state of the human body leads to a change in the . . . the field distribution around the body, the chemical composition of the ambient air due to exhaled air and emissions of endocrine substances through the skin,” he wrote in a paper about his invention. It was his theory that his Sputnik was capable of picking up even the most subtle of these environmental charges.

He spent a number of years testing the device during expeditions to Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Myanmar, Siberia and elsewhere before becoming satisfied that the device was sufficiently sensitive to assess local environmental conditions and their idiosyncrasies after discovering sensitive sensor signal variations during sunrise and sunset or prior to a thunderstorm.

In 2008, he’d taken a series of measurements with it in a variety of spots in Russia – Novoskibirsk, Berdsk, Irkutsk and Abakan – using seven independent Sputnik devices during a total solar eclipse. All seven devices showed similar curves of activity before the eclipse, with all stabilizing similarly after the event was over.

Moody atmospherics
His most intriguing claimed effect was the ability of the device to measure the subliminal psychological and emotional reactions of groups of people. He’d tested in during a vast variety of group gatherings – religious ceremonies, yoga exercises, group meditation, musical performances and even public lectures – and discovered statistically significant changes in the device that correlated with the duration of the events and the group’s collective emotion; the higher the changes in his Sputnik signal, the greater the emotional charge of the room.

Like Roger Nelson and his REGs, he’d discovered major changes in the machine’s output during periods of intense meditation. He’s also demonstrated the effect of subliminal emotion on a room’s charge with one simple study of the impact of low-intensity sound on a group of student volunteers.

They’d been asked to come into a classroom and simply work on computers, while unbeknownst to them, Konstantin turned on a device emitting a low-intensity 20Hz sound – on the border of the human range of hearing but enough to be subliminally disturbing.

After the study was finished, a questionnaire assessing the students’ mental and emotional state, including their perception of their health and mood unquestionably showed that they’d been stressed during the experiment, and their changes mirrored the changes registered by the Sputnik.

The same changes did not occur with a control group of students under the same conditions but without the sound played or even by a third Sputnik, exposed to the same 20 Hz sound but placed in an empty room.

The power of intention
Although Konstantin’s device is relatively new and not subjected to the battery of testing of the REG machines, I wanted to see if his results correlated with those of Roger Nelson during our big Peace Intention Experiments. I asked him to turn it on every day of our last big experiment to see if any changes emerged.

Like Nelson’s REG, Sputnik showed changes just during the window of our intention. More evidence that collective thoughts can be heard ‘round the world.

A prayer for Luke

In March 2007, Don Berry, a US Army veteran from Tullahoma, Tennessee, wrote in to my Intention Experiment website forum, offering to be our first human Intention Experiment.

In 1981, he had been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis and his spine was fused, making it impossible for him to move from side to side. Over the course of the years he had both hips replaced, and he was in constant pain. As he had a wealth of x-rays and other medical test reports, he said, he could produce a full record of his medical history by which to measure any change.

 

In March 2007, Don Berry, a US Army veteran from Tullahoma, Tennessee, wrote in to my Intention Experiment website forum, offering to be our first human Intention Experiment.

In 1981, he had been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis and his spine was fused, making it impossible for him to move from side to side. Over the course of the years he had both hips replaced, and he was in constant pain. As he had a wealth of x-rays and other medical test reports, he said, he could produce a full record of his medical history by which to measure any change.

Don’s blog prompted members of my online community to set twice-weekly periods during which they would send healing intention to Don, and he in turn began to keep a diary of his condition.

“While it was going on, I did start to feel better,” he wrote me. “It was not an immediate healing, but my well being was better and I was in less pain.”

When Don went for his semi-annual doctor appointment with his rheumatologist, for the very first time, after his doctor asked after him, he could say that he felt absolutely fantastic. “I was (am) still fused together, but I felt I was bending more and I was wayyyyyy down on the pain scale,” he told him. “The best I have ever remembered feeling.”

The doctor then pulled out his stethoscope to listen to Don’s heart, and had him take a deep breath. At the end of Don’s breath, as the doctor listened intently, he suddenly looked up at Don, his face incredulous, and said, “Your chest just moved!”

“The doctor actually sat there with his mouth open,” wrote Don, “I did not have a spontaneous healing, but the Intention Experiment set the wheels in motion for me to feel so much better, and it also caused me to recognize the way I thought affected my health and even the world around me.”

Weekly intention group
This sparked an idea – to run regular, informal group intentions for people like Don – an Intention of the Week. We could treat this as one more kind of experiment.

We began leading our web community in an intention from our web site – usually to help heal one of our participants or, in the wake of the financial crisis that autumn, to ease someone’s financial worries.

We’d invite the audience to nominate an intention of the week and we’d post the person’s name, condition and photo on our website to gather weekly to send healing intention every Sunday at 1 pm Eastern US.

Before long I was receiving hundreds of requests every week: people with cancer, children with brain damage or birth defects, estranged family members, wounded pets. And before long, I was hearing about miracles – healings from life-and-death injuries, spontaneous remissions of cancer, infants whom medicine could no longer help who miraculously got better.

The fact that it was working on babies – even foetuses –and people who were unconscious tended to rule out a placebo effect.

My website was turning into the cyber equivalent of a weekly prayer group.

Latest target
And all these years later, our latest target has been Luke Thomas, the young boy from Birmingham who tried to commit suicide after his first proper relationship broke up. On 8 December 2015, Luke jumped from a 40-foot structure onto hard ground.

He survived, but had multiple injuries and after several operations, at the time his stepfather Michael wrote us on January 5, Luke was fighting for his life but still quite poorly.

The fall had left him with a laundry list of injuries: brain injury and skull fractures, double vision in left eye and eye socket fracture, a punctured right lung, pelvis fractures, spinal injury at the bottom of spine, broken ankle and crushed heel (left foot), urinary tract nerve damage (no feeling when needing to go to toilet), left elbow fractures, and surgery trauma recovery for his pelvis, spine and elbow.

Then there were all the negative effects of multiple x-rays and CT scans, and all the pain relief drugs being administered at the moment, including paracetamol, ibuprofen, morphine and synthetic morphine.

And all that was all in addition to his suicidal state of mind over the break-up.

Our community sent intention to him on Sunday, January 10.

The following week, Michael sent in a report with an update on Luke, with both he and his wife convinced they were witnessing big improvements within 48 hours after our intention.

On the following Monday, January 11, he was told that they could stop the antibiotics IV for his chest infection, which was clearing up. On Tuesday they removed the cannula from his hand. He began sleeping better during the night.

Most important, his desire to live had returned. He was asking more questions about his recovery and trying to visualize himself back at home and school.

So we sent intention again, on January 17, and a week later, Michael sent through a remarkable report:

Luke’s brain injury became stable. His elbow fracture was healing and he could now use his arm for weight bearing, as he could with his left ankle. All his infections had cleared up and he was able to come off painkillers and antibiotics. The double vision in his left eye cleared up. He was allowed to start moving from bed to wheelchair and his bowels had improved.

“He is impatient and wants to get better quickly, has a real resolve to want to get into the gym,” wrote Michael.

Here he is out of bed for the first time in 10 days, exploring the ward and hospital, “a major achievement by him,” wrote Michael. The highlight came on his 15th birthday, when his three best friends came to visit him. Everything was going in the right direction.

Healing crisis
Michael wrote yesterday with an update: “In the last few days, he has had a setback, all involved with his bowel and bladder, where he has no feeling at this time. We are continuing the intention that he will be healed in this area too and although for now it is causing him a lot of discomfort and pain. His state of mind has also therefore had a setback with him stating on several occasions that he doesn’t want to be here anymore.

“ My experience of healing is that there are what are called ‘healing crises’,” wrote Michael, “where the body will go into a high state of elimination of some kind, which means a higher amount of pain will occur for a period of time before the area suddenly is healed. My wife has witnessed these episodes on occasion with Luke. I also believe that the medication he is still receiving won’t be helping his state of mind either.”

Later that day, Michael wrote, that Luke was not in a “good place emotionally.”

So let’s do our intention one more time, to give a final boost to this young man who has everything to live for. (See Intention of the Week below.)

The Cure for All Diseases

Increasingly, doctors and researchers at the forefront of medicine are finding that most, if not all, of the major degenerative conditions of old age—heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease—have a common cause, and it’s not the inevitable outcome of old age or mechanical problems of ‘wear and tear,’ as commonly proposed, as though the body were a piece of worn-out machinery.

Increasingly, doctors and researchers at the forefront of medicine are finding that most, if not all, of the major degenerative conditions of old age—heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease—have a common cause, and it’s not the inevitable outcome of old age or mechanical problems of ‘wear and tear,’ as commonly proposed, as though the body were a piece of worn-out machinery.

The cause of all these diseases is purely chronic, low-grade inflammation.

The arthritis connection
This association first came to light with arthritis, when associate professor of immunology and rheumatology William Robinson and his colleagues at Stanford University carried out studies showing that osteoarthritic joint tissues contain larger-than-usual numbers of inflammatory cells, which secrete certain substances early on in the progression of the disease and, in fact, appear to be its central driver.

These substances trigger a chain of molecular events that eventually escalates into an attack against the joint itself, mounted by the body’s own defence systems, which are ordinarily only deployed against invading microorganisms.

With heart disease, even conservative groups like the American Heart Association (AHA) now acknowledge the role of inflammation, after studies have shown that men with the highest levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) in their blood—a recognized marker of inflammation—are more than twice as likely to suffer from the condition.

Even LDL cholesterol, the so-called ‘bad’ guy in heart disease, has a role to play in the inflammatory process. In an attempt to repair the damage to arterial walls, it ends up clogging them by laying down plaque.

And now, diabetes
And we now have new evidence from Dr. Patrick Kingsley, a British integrative doctor, now retired, who treated hundreds, if not thousands, of diabetic patients over his acclaimed career and discovered that inflammation was once again the common culprit.

Ordinarily, inflammation is not a bad thing. Characterized by heat, swelling, redness and pain, it’s an attempt by the body’s immune system to heal injury, allergy and infection by increasing the flow of nutrients carried by the blood and lymphatic system into damaged areas, while flushing away harmful pathogens and damaged cells.

An ‘inflammation cascade’ occurs when tissue injury or a pathogen of some sort, like a virus or bacteria or even an allergen, triggers the creation of cytokines. These small proteins ultimately stimulate the production of cell-killing chemicals, all part of the ‘seek-and-destroy’ mission of the immune system and usually essential to the healing process.

When it has to do with degenerative conditions, inflammation is a healing response that has got out of hand.

Chronic conditions such as joint pain, heart disease and diabetes are an inflammatory warning sign that the body is struggling to maintain health in the face of an overwhelming assault of some sort of stressor—in the case of diabetes, usually some food-provoked inflammation—that not only inhibits normal healing, but also contributes to an ever-worsening cycle of disorder.

Environmental diseases
Findings like those from Stanford University offer laboratory confirmation of what many practitioners of functional medicine discovered in their clinical practice.

Dr John Mansfield, author of Arthritis: The Allergy Connection (Chivers Press, 1991), who successfully treated several thousands of arthritis patients in the UK at his clinic in Surrey before recently retiring, maintains that most forms of arthritis are “environmentally induced” by an intolerance to certain foods or environmental chemicals, and that some 90 per cent of patients can be improved or fully cured just by making certain lifestyle changes.

Dr Kingsley discovered a similar situation when treating diabetes. As he describes in our forthcoming February issue of WDDTY (on sale next week), a cytokine protein called ‘tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha’, present in all forms of inflammation, also happens to destroy glucose transporter (GLUT) type 4, another of the body’s proteins necessary for processing sugar and transporting it to muscle cells.

Dr. Kingsley’s own experience and casebook confirm what he’d read from other research: what causes high glycemic reactions in diabetics is not simply high-sugar foods, but “individualized idiosyncratic reactions to a food”.

Find the source of inflammation—usually one or more foods or food groups—and his patients were often able to drastically lower their need for insulin.

Serving up a miracle
In our issue, Kingsley has put together the seemingly impossible: a simple means of locating the sources of your inflammation and, consequently, your condition.

With a little persistence, you may be able to perform your own small miracle and drastically reduce your need for insulin or drugs.

In the process, you might even find the cure for all of your degenerative diseases.

To find out more or get hold of the February 2016 issue: www.wddty.com

Make Your New Year’s resolutions an Intention Experiment

It’s that time of year for making promises to yourself – promises, you know from past experience, that you are overwhelmingly likely to break.

But what if you made your resolutions a firm and public request to the universe? And what if you tried to quantify the results?

Something about the promises we make to each other may carry more weight than the promises we make to ourselves. A statement in the presence of a group is a contract we make with the universe – to do and be better than we presently are. It’s analogous to a sacred promise. There is also the enhanced power of support and connection when we announce an intention to our closest friends, a condition as necessary to the human spirit as oxygen is to the human body.

 

It’s that time of year for making promises to yourself – promises, you know from past experience, that you are overwhelmingly likely to break.

But what if you made your resolutions a firm and public request to the universe? And what if you tried to quantify the results?

Something about the promises we make to each other may carry more weight than the promises we make to ourselves. A statement in the presence of a group is a contract we make with the universe – to do and be better than we presently are. It’s analogous to a sacred promise. There is also the enhanced power of support and connection when we announce an intention to our closest friends, a condition as necessary to the human spirit as oxygen is to the human body.

At every point of our lives we need to know, that somewhere out there, someone’s got our back, and this knowledge becomes a larger certainty in our lives when a group of strangers are rooting for us.

Get out your notebooks
To carry out these experiments, all you will need in the way of equipment is a notebook and a calendar. When you are first starting, note the date and times of your intentions.

Make a daily note of any change in the object of your intention, and be specific. If you are trying to heal a condition in yourself, take a daily ‘temperature’ of change. What do you feel like? What symptoms have improved? Have any got worse? Have any new ones shown up?

If you are trying to change your relationship with someone who is ordinarily very antagonistic to something more positive, make a daily note of his or her interactions with you, to determine if anything has changed.

Choose your goal
Here’s how to do it. Select a goal that has never happened but that you’d like to have happen. Choose something that seldom occurs or is particularly unlikely, so that if it does come to pass it is more likely to be the result of your intention. Be highly specific.

Here are some fun possibilities to play around with before setting your own goals:

• receiving flowers from your husband (if he has never bought them for you)
• having your wife sit down and watch a football match with you (if she usually refuses to do so)
• having the boorish neighbour who never gives you the time of day start a cheery conversation with you
• having your child help with the dishes
• having your child wake up on his or her own in the morning and get ready for school without prompting
• improving the weather (30 per cent more or less rain, say)
• having your child make his or her bed (I’m still working on this one)
• having your dog stop barking at night
• stopping your cat from scratching the sofa
• having your husband or wife come home from work one hour earlier than usual
• having your child watch television two hours less
• getting someone who can’t stand you at work to say hello and start up a conversation
• achieving 10 per cent higher profits at work
• growing your plants or crops 10 per cent faster than usual.

Announce these intentions to a small group of your friends (those not involved in the intention.) As you begin to manifest, you can try more complicated thoughts. But remember, at first you want one single event to change, something where change can be easily quantified and can probably be attributed to your thoughts.

Report the results to me on this blog or my Facebook page: www.facebook.com/LynneMcTaggart2011

The heart: the first brain

Dean Radin the celebrated scientist from the Institute of Noetic Sciences, once made an important discovery: that we often receive a physical foreboding of an event. He set up a computer that would randomly select photos designed to calm, to arouse, or to upset a participant.

His volunteers were wired to physiological monitors that recorded changes in skin conduction, heart rate and blood pressure, and they sat in front of a computer that would randomly display color photos of tranquil scenes (landscapes), or scenes designed to shock (autopsies) or to arouse (erotic materials).

Radin was fascinated to discover that his subjects were registering physiological responses before they saw the photo. As if trying to brace themselves, their responses were highest before they saw an image that was erotic or disturbing.

 

 

Dean Radin the celebrated scientist from the Institute of Noetic Sciences, once made an important discovery: that we often receive a physical foreboding of an event. He set up a computer that would randomly select photos designed to calm, to arouse, or to upset a participant.

His volunteers were wired to physiological monitors that recorded changes in skin conduction, heart rate and blood pressure, and they sat in front of a computer that would randomly display color photos of tranquil scenes (landscapes), or scenes designed to shock (autopsies) or to arouse (erotic materials).

Radin was fascinated to discover that his subjects were registering physiological responses before they saw the photo. As if trying to brace themselves, their responses were highest before they saw an image that was erotic or disturbing.

This offered the first laboratory proof that our bodies unconsciously anticipate and act out our own future emotional states and that the nervous system does not merely cushion itself against a future blow, but also works out the emotional meaning of it.

Heartfelt information
Dr Rollin McCraty, executive vice-president and director of research for the Institute of HeartMath, in Boulder Creek, California was fascinated by the idea of physical foreboding of an event, but wondered where exactly in the body this intuitive information might first be felt.

He used the original design of Radin’s study with a computerized system of randomly generated arousing photos, but hooked up his participants to a greater complement of medical equipment.

McCraty discovered that these forebodings of good and bad news were felt in both the heart and brain, whose electromagnetic waves would speed up or slow down just before a disturbing or tranquil picture was shown. It was true that the brain was a seasoned forecaster; all four lobes of the cerebral cortex appeared to take part in this intuitive awareness.

But most astonishing of all, the heart appeared to receive this information moments before the brain did. This suggested that the body has certain perceptual apparatus that enables it continually to scan and intuit the future, but that the heart holds the largest antenna.

Only after the heart receives the information does it communicates this information to the brain.

The heart’s ‘brain’
McCraty’s conclusion – that the heart is the largest ‘brain’ of the body – has now gained credibility after research findings by Dr John Andrew Armour at the University of Montreal and the Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur in Montréal. Armour has discovered neurotransmitters in the heart that signal and influence aspects of higher thought in the brain.

McCraty discovered that touch and even mentally focusing on the heart cause brain-wave entrainment between people. When two people touched while focusing loving thoughts on their hearts, the more ‘coherent’ heart rhythms of the two began to entrain the brain of the other.

This latest evidence is further proof of the holistic nature of our bodies. Scientists have made much of the fact that the gut is the ‘second brain’ because it has neurotransmitters of its own that made certain decisions and then inform the brain.

However, we now know that the heart is more than a metaphor for our emotional responses; is its own intelligence center, in fact the body’s most important center of perception, with the highest level of intelligence.

It is the still small voice inside us that our very limited brain needs to learn to turn to.

It’s only stuff

Amid all the fear-mongering the press has indulged in of late after the terrorist attacks in Paris and Los Angeles and London, it’s easy to overlook the good news in any calamity: the simple power and goodness of the human spirit.

Take the recent floods in the north of England where I live. Two weeks ago, around Cumbria and the breathtaking Lake District, the heavens suddenly opened and poured down the heaviest rain ever recorded in British history.

Some 13.5 inches of rain fell between 6 pm on Friday December 4 and the same time the following evening, easily breaching the special defences built by the British government after the 2005 floods had created a similar disaster.

More than 5000 Cumbrian homes were flooded and more than a hundred people drowned. The press was full of images of deluge and disaster, homes and farms under water, people scrambling out of top story windows.

Amid all the fear-mongering the press has indulged in of late after the terrorist attacks in Paris and Los Angeles and London, it’s easy to overlook the good news in any calamity: the simple power and goodness of the human spirit.

Take the recent floods in the north of England where I live. Two weeks ago, around Cumbria and the breathtaking Lake District, the heavens suddenly opened and poured down the heaviest rain ever recorded in British history.

Some 13.5 inches of rain fell between 6 pm on Friday December 4 and the same time the following evening, easily breaching the special defences built by the British government after the 2005 floods had created a similar disaster.

More than 5000 Cumbrian homes were flooded and more than a hundred people drowned. The press was full of images of deluge and disaster, homes and farms under water, people scrambling out of top story windows.

A posse of volunteers

What they largely ignored were the likes of Stephen Brown.

Brown was working at his job at the basement bar of the Glenridding hotel in Ullswater – a town in the Lake District named by the lake of the same name last Saturday evening - when the swollen river of the tiny tributary leading out from the lake burst over the bank, causing a landslide of water, grit and silt. Torrents of water burst through the doors of the hotel, heading straight for the basement.

In minutes, Brown watched as the flood rushed into the kitchen, carrying away kitchen appliances and blocking the way out. He and his fellow employees formed a human chain to help guests out to safety. And over the following four days, Brown worked tirelessly with group of volunteers to cart out gallons of filthy gelatinous mud, scrubbing and cleaning up whatever had been left behind, while a team of electricians attempted to restore power.

They had just finished, when the heavens opened again the following Wednesday, with a similar deluge of rain. Volunteers had been working to dredge the mud and silt that had formed under a bridge immediately outside the town, but the stream banks burst again, water gravel and mud began pouring into town and made their down the steps of the hotel and into the basement bar again.

This time, though, the freezing water and debris also made their way through to his parent’s grocery store and a small group of nearby flats used by hotel staff – including Brown’s flat on the ground floor.

“So that’s my business flooded, my home flooded, my parents flooded,” he said. “Bloody disaster.”

The disaster was all the more galling because Britain’s Environment Agency had designated Ullswater as a ‘hot spot’ for flash flooding and supposedly had created an adequate flood defense.

Nevertheless, during the crisis, the townspeople of Ullswater came together in a way they hadn’t before. One pizzeria in Kendal donated free pizzas to those who’d been evacuated from their homes and were huddled together in the town hall, and a Tasty Hogs company donated half a roasted pig. Supermarkets offered free meals; a leisure center opened up for free beds. Firemen helped to save 120 sheep by easing them into rowboats.

And to Stephen Brown’s amazement, new volunteers showed up at the Glenridding to clean it up for the second time round.

The happy wake of Hurricane Sandy

This experience reminds me of the days after Hurricane Sandy hit lower Manhattan, leaving most of Avenue C in the East Village in Manhattan under water. Zachary Mack, co-owner of Alphabet City Wine Company, wrote that no business along his street had been spared.

Within minutes of Zachary’s arriving at his wrecked store on the Tuesday, the day after the Con Ed transformer exploded, a group of three regulars showed up with flashlights and trash bags. “What do you need us to do? How can we help you?” they said.

Before long, Alphabet City Wine Company, open for business by candlelight, had become a command center, where neighbors and other business owners met and made plans. Strangers offered dry clothing to those who were soaking wet; chefs coordinated vast neighborhood cookouts to feed those locals in need for free; groups gathered around a battery powered radio for updates. Morale was higher than it had been before the storm.

Every morning, the neighborhood would gather, drink hot chocolate provided by another business owner and formulate the day’s plans: who’d find gas for those cars still working; who needed to drive people to find shelter; who would be assigned the task of finding batteries or candles. By the following day, said Zachary, the residents had created a makeshift community center.

“Neighbors were meeting for the first time, passing information. Kids were playing with one another. People were shouting out random bits of news from their incoming texts or Twitter feeds. And probably best of all: locals installed a bike-powered cell phone charging station. Complete strangers sat and pedaled to give their neighbors the juice they needed to get back up and running,” he wrote.

When the basement of one of the neighbors filled up with water, he was surrounded by locals who’d stopped working on their own repair jobs to help out.

“Whatever preconceived notions others have about the spirit of community on New York City, I know that I’ll never forget the way I feel today.

“The people sitting next to me in Brooklyn tell me they look at the news and they sense desperation. I’m here to tell you that things have never looked or felt better on Avenue C.”

And up in Ullswater, after this double disaster, Brown remained sanguine, insisting that the wreckage around him isn’t what’s ultimately important. “Oh, we’ll get on. We’ve survived. It’s only stuff.”

Disaster brings us together and unearths the hidden community that is always there – it gives us a cogent reminder this holiday season that the things most sacred to us are more than just ‘stuff.’

It’s the people who’ve got your back when the going gets rough. And don’t ever forget: there are so many of them out there.

The World as your Play-Doh

The central assumption of all of classical physics is that large material things in the universe are set pieces, a fait accompli of manufacture. How can they possibly be changed?

The renowned quantum physicist Anton Zeilinger has examined just this question in his Institute for Experimental Physics lab at the University of Vienna, which is at the very frontier of some of the most exotic research into the nature of quantum properties.

Zeilinger is particularly interested in superposition, and the implications of the Copenhagen Interpretation – that subatomic particles aren’t real yet, but exist only in a state of potential. Could objects, and not simply the subatomic particles that compose them, he wondered, exist in this hall-of-mirrors state?

The central assumption of all of classical physics is that large material things in the universe are set pieces, a fait accompli of manufacture. How can they possibly be changed?

The renowned quantum physicist Anton Zeilinger has examined just this question in his Institute for Experimental Physics lab at the University of Vienna, which is at the very frontier of some of the most exotic research into the nature of quantum properties.

Zeilinger is particularly interested in superposition, and the implications of the Copenhagen Interpretation – that subatomic particles aren’t real yet, but exist only in a state of potential. Could objects, and not simply the subatomic particles that compose them, he wondered, exist in this hall-of-mirrors state?

The famous double-slit experiment

To test this question, Zeilinger employed a piece of equipment called a Talbot Lau interferometer, using a variation on the famous double-slit experiment of Thomas Young, a British physicist of the nineteenth century.

In Young’s experiment, a beam of pure light is sent through a single hole, or slit, in a piece of cardboard, then passes through a second screen with two holes before finally arriving at a third, blank screen.

When two waves are in phase (that is, peaking and troughing at the same time), and bump into each other – technically called ‘interference’ – the combined intensity of the waves is greater than each individual amplitude. The signal gets stronger.

This amounts to an imprinting or exchange of information, called ‘constructive interference’. If one is peaking when the other troughs, they tend to cancel each other out – called ‘destructive interference’. With constructive interference, when all the waves are wiggling in synch, the light will get brighter; destructive interference will cancel out the light and result in complete darkness.

In the experiment, the light passing through the two holes forms a zebra pattern of alternating dark and light bands on the final blank screen. If light were simply a series of particles, two of the brightest patches would appear directly behind the two holes of the second screen. However, the brightest portion of the pattern is halfway between the two holes, caused by the combined amplitude of those waves that most interfere with each other.

From this pattern, Young was the first to realize that light beaming through the two holes spreads out in overlapping waves.

Smeared out photons

A modern variation of the experiment fires off single photons through the double slit. These single photons also produce zebra patterns on the screen, demonstrating that even single units of light travel as a smeared-out wave with a large sphere of influence.

Twentieth-century physicists have gone on to use Young’s experiment with other individual quantum particles, and held it up as proof that quantum physics has Through-the-Looking-Glass properties: quantum entities act wavelike and travel though both slits at once.

Fire a stream of electrons at the triple screens, and you end up with the interference patterns of alternating light and dark patches, just as you do with a beam of light. Since you need at least two waves to create such interference patterns, the implication of the experiment is that the photon is somehow mysteriously able to travel through both slits at the same time and interfere with itself when it reunites.

The double-slit experiment encapsulates the central mystery of quantum physics: the idea that a subatomic particle is not a set something yet, but all possible selves – and all at the same moment.

It also demonstrates the principle that electrons, which exist in a hermetic quantum state, are ultimately unknowable. You cannot identify something about a quantum entity without stopping the particle in its tracks, at which point it will collapse to a single point.

In Zeilinger’s adaptation of the slit experiment, using molecules instead of subatomic particles, the interferometer contained an array of slits in the first screen, and a grating of identical parallel slits in the second one, whose purpose was to deflect the molecules passing by.

The third grating, turned perpendicular to the beam of molecules, acted as a scanning ‘mask’, with the ability to calculate the size of the waves of any of the molecules passing through, by means of a highly sensitive laser detector to locate the positions of the molecules and their interference patterns.

Mammoth molecules

For the initial experiment, Zeilinger and his team carefully chose a batch of fullerene molecules, or ‘buckyballs’ made of 60 carbon atoms. At one nanometre apiece, these are the behemoths of the molecular world. They selected fullerene not only for its size but also for its neat arrangement, with a shape like a tiny symmetrical football.

Zeilinger heated the fullerenes to 900 K so they would create an intense molecular beam, then fired them through the first screen; they then passed through the second screen before making a pattern on the final screen.

The results were unequivocal. Each molecule displayed the ability to create interference patterns with itself. Some of the largest units of physical matter had not ‘localized’ into their final state. Like a subatomic particle, these giant molecules had not yet gelled into anything real.

The Vienna team tested out a batch of other gigantic molecules, which also demonstrated the same magical properties.

Repeatedly Zeilinger’s research group demonstrated that the molecules could be two places at once, which meant that they remained in a state of superposition even at this large scale.

He and his team had proved the unthinkable: the largest components of physical matter and living things exist in a malleable state – a piece of Play-Doh, to my mind, just waiting for consciousness to manipulate it into life.

Candida do

My magazine What Doctors Don’t Tell You was born from a bad case of Candida. When I was in my early 30s, after an extraordinary patch of bad choices, I underwent a prolonged bout of stress. In every important area of my life, green lights I’d always taken for granted suddenly began turning red.

In quick succession I struggled under an impossible book deadline, married Mr. Wrong, divorced Mr. Wrong, bought the wrong flat, accepted the wrong job, suffered the death of a close friend, and spend a prolonged period of intense isolation in a foreign country.

If I had taken one of those tests in women’s magazines to add up your stress quotient, my sums, which included every last heavy hitter on the major-life-crisis league table—death, marriage, divorce, financial pressure, unfulfilling work, lack of social support—would have rocketed off the chart.

My magazine What Doctors Don’t Tell You was born from a bad case of Candida. When I was in my early 30s, after an extraordinary patch of bad choices, I underwent a prolonged bout of stress. In every important area of my life, green lights I’d always taken for granted suddenly began turning red.

In quick succession I struggled under an impossible book deadline, married Mr. Wrong, divorced Mr. Wrong, bought the wrong flat, accepted the wrong job, suffered the death of a close friend, and spend a prolonged period of intense isolation in a foreign country.

If I had taken one of those tests in women’s magazines to add up your stress quotient, my sums, which included every last heavy hitter on the major-life-crisis league table—death, marriage, divorce, financial pressure, unfulfilling work, lack of social support—would have rocketed off the chart.

Strange brew

Shortly after emerging from the eye of this personal squall, I began to experience strange symptoms and, as time wore on, they began to multiply: hormonal imbalances and increasing food intolerances; diarrhoea and an irritable bowel; insomnia and night sweats—all under a vague fog of mild depression. I had felt powerless for so long that my body seemed to be reacting in parallel, caving in under any sort of microbial onslaught.

For nearly all the three years that I was ill, I made the rounds of medical circles—starting with the standard ones before moving on to an array of alternatives.

I had the emotions Rolfed out of me. Someone tried to diagnose the problem by subjecting my hair sample to radio waves. I ploughed through autogenic training, colonic irrigation and even a form of psychotherapy—a mixture of Wilhelm Reich and what felt like being tickled on the face.

I learned something about my relationship with my mother. But I did not, at any point, get better.

A new illness

The reason all these therapists had so much trouble working out what was wrong with me was that my problem at the time was just too new. Thirty years ago, most practitioners had little appreciation of the subtle balance of the human microbiome, and all the things that can make a gut go awry and present with a host of seemingly unrelated symptoms.

What I had inside of me was simply thrush of the gut. Most standard doctors at the time vaguely understood that Candida albicans was a yeast that lived in the upper bowel in most of us without doing either good or harm, as it’s kept in line by the immune system and the friendly bacteria that coexist with it.

But in 1983, American internist Dr C. Orian Truss audaciously proposed that when the immune system is weakened and the good-guy bacteria fall in numbers, those yeast can start multiplying out of control, producing toxins that eventually interfere with a range of bodily functions.

When I finally came across Truss’s discovery, it was a lightbulb moment: the symptoms matched almost every one of mine.

Nutritional pioneering

After figuring out what I thought I had, I searched out a renowned nutritional pioneer specializing in allergies and nutritional medicine, whose battery of tests confirmed my own suspicions and also rooted out a few other contributory problems.

The treatment at the time for me would now be considered rather severe: large doses of a well-tolerated antifungal drug like nystatin for many months (now known to cause a leaky gut), plus a batch of specially tailored doses of supplements and a year on a highly restrictive healing diet of fresh, unrefined food.

No matter—it worked. A month after I’d started, my dry cleaner asked me if I’d had a face lift.

Back in the 1980s, I had to do my own exhaustive detective work to get better; Bryan and I launched our publication What Doctors Don’t Tell You so that patients like you wouldn’t have to.

I’ve experienced first-hand that people can recover their health just by altering what they eat and how they live. But my own plan included possibly the most important lesson of all, which I discovered during my own journey: healing isn’t simply a matter of finding the right drug or right operation, but a complex process of accepting responsibility for your own life.

Thanks (to yourself) for the giving

For Americans like me, when I try to ponder on what I’m most thankful this Thanksgiving holiday weekend, what first comes to mind is all the people I try to serve, like you - my readers and subscribers – for a very selfish reason: you are what’s keeping me healthy.

 

For Americans like me, when I try to ponder on what I’m most thankful this Thanksgiving holiday weekend, what first comes to mind is all the people I try to serve, like you - my readers and subscribers – for a very selfish reason: you are what’s keeping me healthy.

Lately I’ve come across a good deal of evidence showing that people who help others live longer and healthier lives. One of the largest studies of this kind was carried out by Karl Pillemer of Cornell University, who examined some 7000 people in total, comparing the health of those who volunteered to help with projects attempting to address environmental issues such as pollution or toxic waste, with the health of those who avoided volunteer work like the plague.

Pillemer tracked the health histories all 7000 for 20 years. He found that those who’d volunteered were far healthier and more physically active, and half as likely to be depressed as those who weren’t engaged in that kind of volunteer work.

What this means, of course, is that offering your time to work for the greater good produces more than just a warm and fuzzy feeling. It proves strengthening to both mind and the body.

Counters stress
In fact, if you’re suffering from severe stress, you’re more likely to overcome it once you turn your attention to someone else.

One study of more than 800 people suffering from severe stress were followed by University of Buffalo researchers for five years to compare the state of their health with the extent to which they’d helped anyone outside the home, including relatives, friends or neighbors.

That little bit of helping acted like a bulletproof vest. When faced with future stressful situations, like illness, financial difficulties, job loss or death in the family, those who had helped others during the previous year were far less likely to die than those who hadn’t.

The contrast between people who help and those who don’t couldn’t be starker. When faced with each new stressful event, those who’d decided not to lend a hand increased their chances of dying by 30 per cent

Better than a good diet
So what’s the amazing key to this? Yet another study of California senior residents showed that those who were involved in volunteer work had 63 per cent lower mortality rates than those who weren’t, a situation, noted the Stanford researchers, “only partly explained by health habits, physical functioning, religious attendance and social support.”

Something about the desire to do something for someone else with no strings attached or personal benefit has an impact on health and well-being far and above that of diet and lifestyle, social support and religious belief.

In fact, there’s no longer any question that it is better to give than to receive. It’s been found, among older Americans, that those who give experience less illness than those who are on the receiving end of the kind gesture.

After Robert Putnam of Harvard University wrote his ground-breaking book Bowling Alone, which woke Americans up to the fraying of the social fabric across the US, researchers at the John F. Kennedy School at Harvard decided to explore exactly what makes for what they refer to as ‘social capital’ – happiness, close-knit communities and satisfied residents – by carrying out a survey among 30,000 people in communities across America.

What they found was revelatory. Money just didn’t do it for people. Emotional happiness had very little to do with your bank balance once you achieved an annual income above $75,000. That was the benchmark for happiness. People below that income were miserable because they were struggling just to pay the bills, but once you achieved that level of income, making more money than that just didn’t equate to any greater happiness.

But the one factor that made for the greatest sense of happiness and satisfaction was lending a helping hand. In fact those willing to give of their time or money were 42 per cent more likely to be happy than those who didn’t.

High on giving
Psychologists have discovered what they refer to as a ‘helper’s high.’ When people who volunteer are surveyed, they frequently describe feeling physically the same as if they’d undergone vigorous physical exercise or a bout of meditation, largely because during this kind of social contact, the body releases endorphins, countering all the biological effects of stress.

This leads me to a heretical thought. Maybe the endpoint of the ‘I want, I get’ good-life scenario is that it ultimately kills you.

The key to a long and healthy life is living a life that concerns itself with a meaning beyond satisfying the needs of number 1. And if that is true, the entire New Age premise of intention – using the universe as essentially a restaurant, with you the customer ordering whatever dinner you happen to fancy – is wrong.

Getting what you want in your own life starts with the readiness to give.

John Paul Sartre was wrong. Hell is not other people. Other people, it turns out, are your salvation.

It takes a village

Although we consider heart attack, cancer and stroke our biggest killers, the grandfather of all illness is so-called ‘stress’. The term was coined by the little-known Hungarian medical student Hans Selye, who observed that many of his patients, despite having radically different diagnoses, nevertheless manifested virtually identical symptoms. As a group, they simply had the pallor of the unwell.

Selye was the first to define the condition as ‘general adaptation syndrome’, when the body’s hormonal ‘fight-or-flight’ response is unable to cope with the demands placed upon it. Ultimately, he discovered that, when unabated, the condition could lead to high blood pressure, arteriosclerosis, allergies, autoimmune disease and the raft of illnesses we now understand to be the standard medical disorders of modern times.

Although we consider heart attack, cancer and stroke our biggest killers, the grandfather of all illness is so-called ‘stress’. The term was coined by the little-known Hungarian medical student Hans Selye, who observed that many of his patients, despite having radically different diagnoses, nevertheless manifested virtually identical symptoms. As a group, they simply had the pallor of the unwell.

Selye was the first to define the condition as ‘general adaptation syndrome’, when the body’s hormonal ‘fight-or-flight’ response is unable to cope with the demands placed upon it. Ultimately, he discovered that, when unabated, the condition could lead to high blood pressure, arteriosclerosis, allergies, autoimmune disease and the raft of illnesses we now understand to be the standard medical disorders of modern times.

Selye’s initial term, ‘stress’, was a misnomer because of his poor command of English; he inappropriately had borrowed it from physics, where the term refers to having a high degree of malleability.

Selye later agreed that he should have used the physics term ‘strain’, which describes the changes or deformation of a substance when force is placed on it. Nevertheless, he went on to become a leading authority on the subject, particularly as regards the relationship between the endocrine system and stress-related diseases.

Failure to adapt

UK nutritional pioneer Dr Stephen Davies once described illness to me in similar terms as a ‘failure of the organism to adapt to its environment.’

He described what is often called the ‘rain-barrel’ effect: individual stresses such as poor diet or chemical pollution can be tolerated on their own, but as the barrel fills and spills over, we become ill because there are too many stressors, including environmental toxins, electromagnetic fields and emotional difficulties.

The latest evidence is that stress has everything to do with our response to our life’s events and, indeed, our response to how we perceive our place in the world.

The stress of being separate

One of the greatest and most underappreciated causes of bodily illness is a feeling of isolation—from others, from our family, from our God. I have become convinced, by the copious evidence I wrote about in The Bond, that as individuals, we were never meant to be alone, but always to exist within a larger whole.

Researchers from Brigham Young University recently concluded that social isolation was equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes a day. ‘This effect is not isolated to older adults. Relationships provide a level of protection across all ages,’ said lead researcher Timothy Smith.

As we perceive a strong sense of our own separation and as our inherent need for community remains unsatisfied, so we then fall ill.

Consequently, the greatest healer of stress is re-establishing a connection. That sense of community may come in various forms—whether through a pet or an entire congregation.

For instance, in one study, a group of Americans in the lowest income brackets suffered virtually no stress so long as they had two factors in their lives: a strong religious belief, and, even more important, regular church attendance and a strong religious community.

Clearly, even when engaged in the everyday struggle to survive, we can manage so long as we don’t have to do it alone.

Belief in something bigger

An important part of this sense of connection is believing in something greater than ourselves. The research has found that stroke victims with strong religious beliefs have less anxiety and depression and can cope better with their illness those who are agnostic or atheist.

And the case of Croatian war veterans surviving their country’s recent violent civil war, those with strong religious had less chronic post-traumatic stress than those with no faith and less tendency to commit suicide.

But having a spiritual belief doesn’t even have to include regular church attendance or even an orthodox religion. Studies have found that people who held some sort of religious or spiritual belief without belonging to any organized religion enjoy better mental equilibrium and lower blood pressure than atheists or agnostics.

The major cause of 20th-century illness is not bad luck or not enough money, or the host of other problems we are heir to, but only our emotional response to them. We become ill quite simply because we are thinking the wrong thoughts. We allow our sense of separation, fanned by media stories of recession and apocalypse, to seep into our very bones.

I have come to believe that the most profound healing comes from changing the everyday thoughts we think. Cultivating our own ‘village’ of like-minded individuals, thinking thoughts that inspire a sense of connection, is possibly our most potent self-prescription.

When prayer works

Mitch Krucoff, a cardiologist at Duke University Medical Center, and his nurse practitioner, Suzanne Crater, decided to put prayer to the test with the biggest test of its kind.

Besides prayer, Krucoff wanted to see whether ‘noetic’ therapies, involving some form of remote or mind-body influence, could affect patient outcomes.

He enlisted 150 cardiac patients, recruited from nearby Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and due to have surgery for angioplasty or stents, and divided patient population into five groups.

In addition to standard medical treatment, four of the five were to receive one of the noetic treatments – stress relaxation, healing touch, guided imagery or intercessory prayer. The fifth group would be given no additional intervention besides orthodox medical care. Every patient would undergo continuous monitoring of brain waves, heart rate and blood pressure, to gauge the moment-by-moment effect of these intangible healing influences.

Mitch Krucoff, a cardiologist at Duke University Medical Center, and his nurse practitioner, Suzanne Crater, decided to put prayer to the test with the biggest test of its kind.

Besides prayer, Krucoff wanted to see whether ‘noetic’ therapies, involving some form of remote or mind-body influence, could affect patient outcomes.

He enlisted 150 cardiac patients, recruited from nearby Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and due to have surgery for angioplasty or stents, and divided patient population into five groups.

In addition to standard medical treatment, four of the five were to receive one of the noetic treatments – stress relaxation, healing touch, guided imagery or intercessory prayer. The fifth group would be given no additional intervention besides orthodox medical care. Every patient would undergo continuous monitoring of brain waves, heart rate and blood pressure, to gauge the moment-by-moment effect of these intangible healing influences.

Worldwide recruitment

Krucoff decided to turn up the volume on prayer to full blast. To recruit prayer groups, his nurse-practitioner assistant Suzanne Crater launched a worldwide campaign of solicitation. She wrote to Buddhist monasteries in Nepal and France, and to VirtualJerusalem.com, which arranged for prayers to be placed in the city’s Wailing Wall. She phoned Carmelite nuns in Baltimore to ask for prayers during the evening’s vespers.

By the time she finished her campaign, she had enlisted prayer groups from seven denominations, including Fundamentalists, Moravians, Jews, Buddhists, Catholics, Baptists and members of the Unity Church.

Although Crater and Krucoff left the design of individual prayers to the groups themselves, they stipulated that the patients had to be prayed for by name and that the prayers on behalf of these patients had to concern their healing and recovery. The prayer portion of the study would be blinded, so that neither patients nor staff knew who was going to be prayed for. The other noetic therapies would be administered an hour after the patients had undergone the angioplasty.

The results were impressive. Patients in all the noetic treatment groups enjoyed 30–50 per cent improvements in health during their hospital stay, with fewer complications and a lower incidence of narrowing of the arteries compared with the controls. They also had a 25–30 per cent reduction in adverse outcomes: death, heart attack, or heart failure, a worsening of the state of their arteries or a need for a repeat angioplasty.

Of all the alternative therapies employed, prayer had the most profound effect.

A giant follow-up

Krucoff understood that, for his results to be meaningful, the study needed to be replicated on a far larger scale. He rolled out his study and created MANTRA II by launching into an ambitious recruitment program, eventually enlisting 750 patients from Duke’s Medical Center and nine other hospitals across America, and soliciting 12 prayer groups made up of an even larger, more ecumenical collection of the world’s major religions.

Christians were recruited from Great Britain, Buddhists from Nepal, Muslims from America, Jews from Israel. Duke loudly trumpeted the project as the largest multi-centre study of remote influence, the supreme test of prayer.

With MANTRA II, Krucoff divided the patients into four groups. One group would receive prayer; another, a specially designed program that included music, imagery and touch (or MIT therapy); the third group, MIT plus prayer; and the final control group, standard medical care. Immediately prior to undergoing angioplasty, those assigned to receive MIT would be instructed in a method of relaxed breathing while visualizing a favourite place and listening to calming music of their choice. They would then receive healing touch for 15 minutes from a trained practitioner.

The point of the new study was to examine whether prayer or the noetic interventions would prevent further cardiovascular events in the hospital, such as death, new heart attacks, a need for additional surgery, readmission to the hospital, and signs of a sharp rise in the enzyme creatine phosphokinase, an indication that the heart has suffered damage.

This time, Krucoff also wished to investigate longer-term effects as ‘secondary endpoints’: whether the interventions could alleviate emotional distress, or prevent death or re-hospitalization at any point six months after the patients had been discharged.

9/11 intervenes

Krucoff’s study fell right in the midst of the terrorist attacks of 9/ll and their aftermath. For three months, patient enrolment in the study fell so sharply that he had to amend its design.

He developed a ‘two-tier’ prayer strategy by recruiting 12 ‘second-tier’ prayer groups. As soon as new patients were added to the study, the second-tier groups were to pray for the prayers of the ‘first-tier’ prayer groups, who had been praying for the patients all along.

Through this strategy Krucoff hoped that newly enrolled patients would receive a higher ‘dosage’ of prayer to approximate the amount received by his patients enlisted earlier in the study.

After the enormous advance publicity, Krucoff’s findings were an enormous letdown. When the results were finally in and tallied, there was no denying it: there were no differences in outcomes between any of the various groups during their hospital stay. The only apparent benefit was a slight reduction in distress among the MIT patients prior to the surgery.

Otherwise, the large-scale MANTRA seemed to be an utter failure. Prayer did not seem to make anybody better.

Among the long-term effects, there had been some therapeutic effects in alleviating emotional distress, need for further hospitalization, and even death rates after six months, but these were not considered statistically significant and they hadn’t been the main focus of the study.

Missing the point

But Krucoff’s results as universally interpreted had overlooked one vital finding: the patients with the double-tier prayer groups who had been prayed for had death and re-hospitalization rates over the six months after discharge that were 30 per cent lower than the others. Mortality over six months was also lower among patients given MIT. But the best survival rates of all was those patients who’d been given MIT with prayer.

These results had only been characterized as a ‘suggestive trend’, but they may have been the entire point of the story. Praying worked if the person doing the praying – or his prayers – also had been prayed for.

Prayer works best as a collective venture, a virtuous circle. Then we truly experience that we are not alone.

Do we have to kill cancer?

Dr Larry Dossey, author of Be Careful What You Pray For …once noted that negative intention is the very foundation of most healing. Healing from an infectious agent or a rogue cell line such as cancer requires intent to harm.

It works from a desire to kill something: to inhibit bacterial enzymes, alter cell membrane permeability, or interfere with the nutrition given to the cell or the synthesis of DNA. In order for the patient to get better, the offending agent has to die.

Many pioneers of mind–body medicine in the treatment of cancer, such as Dr Bernie Siegel, Dr Carl Simonton, and Australian psychiatrist Ainslie Meares, have encouraged their patients to use vivid forms of mental imagery – a metaphoric representation of their illness – to enhance their healing.

Dr Larry Dossey, author of Be Careful What You Pray For …once noted that negative intention is the very foundation of most healing. Healing from an infectious agent or a rogue cell line such as cancer requires intent to harm.

It works from a desire to kill something: to inhibit bacterial enzymes, alter cell membrane permeability, or interfere with the nutrition given to the cell or the synthesis of DNA. In order for the patient to get better, the offending agent has to die.

Many pioneers of mind–body medicine in the treatment of cancer, such as Dr Bernie Siegel, Dr Carl Simonton, and Australian psychiatrist Ainslie Meares, have encouraged their patients to use vivid forms of mental imagery – a metaphoric representation of their illness – to enhance their healing.

Fighting a battle

The majority of the cancer patients who first made use of these visualization techniques imagined a battlefield, on which good (the patient) is pitted against evil (the cancer), with the cancer patient possessing the larger weapon.

Some patients imagined their white blood cells as an army killing the cancer cells or a ‘tap’ containing the blood that feeds the cancer cells, which they can turn off. Others visualized themselves as participating in a violent video game.

When Simonton first introduced this technique to his patients in the 1970s, Pac-Man was the most popular video game of the time. He encouraged his patients to imagine a little Pac-Man inside their bodies, gobbling up cancer cells in its path.

But whatever the particulars of the imagery, the intention itself needed to be murderous; the patient had to want to annihilate the enemy.

Why be negative?

Although negative intention appears capable of disrupting the most fundamental biological processes when precisely targeted, one study suggests that healing does not necessarily require negative intention.

Leonard Laskow, an American gynecologist and healer, was recruited by American biologist Glen Rein to test the most effective healing strategy for inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. In his own practice, Laskow believed in establishing an emotional connection with his subject – even with cancer cells – before sending out healing.

Rein prepared five different Petri dishes containing identical numbers of cancer cells and then asked Laskow to send out a different intention while holding each one.

Laskow’s first intention was that the natural order be reinstated and the cells’ growth rate return to normal.

With the next Petri dish he adopted a Taoist visualization that entails imagining that only three of the cancer cells remained in the Petri dish.

For the third dish he was not to have an intention, but simply to ask God to have His will flow through Laskow’s hands.

He offered unconditional love to the cancer cells of the fourth dish, which involved meditating on a state of love and compassion, much as Davidson’s Buddhists had done.

For the final dish of cancer cells, Laskow carried out his only truly destructive intention, by visualizing the cells dematerializing, either going into the light or the ‘void’.

Releasing or offering a choice?

Rein gave Laskow a choice of imagery largely because he was uncertain which visualization would be most effective in obliterating something. Was it more effective to release an entity by offering it an endpoint (the light), or simply to give it a full range of potential (the void)?

As a yardstick of Laskow’s effectiveness, Rein would measure the amount of radioactive thymidine absorbed by the cancer cells – an indicator of the growth rate of malignant cells.

Laskow’s various intentions had quite different effects. The most powerful were undirected intentions asking the cells to return to the natural order, which inhibited the cancer cells’ growth by 39 per cent. Acquiescing to God’s will with no specific request was about half as effective, inhibiting the cells by 21 per cent, as was the Taoist visualization.

An unconditional acceptance of the way things were had no effect either way, nor did imagining the cells dematerializing. In these two instances, the problem may have been that the thought was simply not focused enough.

In a follow-up study, Rein asked Laskow to limit himself to two possibilities, the Taoist visualization and a request for the cells to return to the natural order. This time, he achieved an identical result with both intentions; the cancer cell growth was inhibited by 20 per cent.

However, the strongest effect of all occurred when he combined the two approaches, mixing an intention to return to the natural order while imagining only three cells left; his rate of cell inhibition doubled, to 40 per cent.

Restoring order

Clearly the combination of asking the universe to restore order while imagining a specific outcome exerted a powerful effect. Rein asked Laskow to repeat this combined approach, but to target the medium in which the cancer cells grew, rather than the cells themselves.

Laskow achieved the same result as when he had focused directly on the cells themselves.

Finally, Rein instructed Laskow to hold each of his five states of mind in turn while grasping one of five vials of water, which would later be used to make up the tissue-culture medium of the cancer cells.

The water treated with the ‘natural-order’ intention again had the greatest effect, inhibiting the growth of the cancer cells by 28 per cent. In this case, water apparently ‘stored’ and transferred the intentions to the culture medium and on to the cancer cells.

A very specific request

Laskow’s approach was instructive. The most effective healing intention had been framed as a request, combined with a highly specific visualization of the outcome, but not necessarily a destructive one.

With healing, the most effective approach may not be to destroy the source of the illness, but, as with other forms of intention, to put out your specific request, then move aside, let go of the outcome and allow a greater intelligence to restore order.

Do we have to kill cancer?

Dr Larry Dossey, author of Be Careful What You Pray For …once noted that negative intention is the very foundation of most healing. Healing from an infectious agent or a rogue cell line such as cancer requires intent to harm.

It works from a desire to kill something: to inhibit bacterial enzymes, alter cell membrane permeability, or interfere with the nutrition given to the cell or the synthesis of DNA. In order for the patient to get better, the offending agent has to die.

Many pioneers of mind–body medicine in the treatment of cancer, such as Dr Bernie Siegel, Dr Carl Simonton, and Australian psychiatrist Ainslie Meares, have encouraged their patients to use vivid forms of mental imagery – a metaphoric representation of their illness – to enhance their healing.

Fighting a battle

The majority of the cancer patients who first made use of these visualization techniques imagined a battlefield, on which good (the patient) is pitted against evil (the cancer), with the cancer patient possessing the larger weapon.

Some patients imagined their white blood cells as an army killing the cancer cells or a ‘tap’ containing the blood that feeds the cancer cells, which they can turn off. Others visualized themselves as participating in a violent video game.

When Simonton first introduced this technique to his patients in the 1970s, Pac-Man was the most popular video game of the time. He encouraged his patients to imagine a little Pac-Man inside their bodies, gobbling up cancer cells in its path.

But whatever the particulars of the imagery, the intention itself needed to be murderous; the patient had to want to annihilate the enemy.

Why be negative?

Although negative intention appears capable of disrupting the most fundamental biological processes when precisely targeted, one study suggests that healing does not necessarily require negative intention.

Leonard Laskow, an American gynecologist and healer, was recruited by American biologist Glen Rein to test the most effective healing strategy for inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. In his own practice, Laskow believed in establishing an emotional connection with his subject – even with cancer cells – before sending out healing.

Rein prepared five different Petri dishes containing identical numbers of cancer cells and then asked Laskow to send out a different intention while holding each one.

Laskow’s first intention was that the natural order be reinstated and the cells’ growth rate return to normal.

With the next Petri dish he adopted a Taoist visualization that entails imagining that only three of the cancer cells remained in the Petri dish.

For the third dish he was not to have an intention, but simply to ask God to have His will flow through Laskow’s hands.

He offered unconditional love to the cancer cells of the fourth dish, which involved meditating on a state of love and compassion, much as Davidson’s Buddhists had done.

For the final dish of cancer cells, Laskow carried out his only truly destructive intention, by visualizing the cells dematerializing, either going into the light or the ‘void’.

Releasing or offering a choice?

Rein gave Laskow a choice of imagery largely because he was uncertain which visualization would be most effective in obliterating something. Was it more effective to release an entity by offering it an endpoint (the light), or simply to give it a full range of potential (the void)?

As a yardstick of Laskow’s effectiveness, Rein would measure the amount of radioactive thymidine absorbed by the cancer cells – an indicator of the growth rate of malignant cells.

Laskow’s various intentions had quite different effects. The most powerful were undirected intentions asking the cells to return to the natural order, which inhibited the cancer cells’ growth by 39 per cent. Acquiescing to God’s will with no specific request was about half as effective, inhibiting the cells by 21 per cent, as was the Taoist visualization.

An unconditional acceptance of the way things were had no effect either way, nor did imagining the cells dematerializing. In these two instances, the problem may have been that the thought was simply not focused enough.

In a follow-up study, Rein asked Laskow to limit himself to two possibilities, the Taoist visualization and a request for the cells to return to the natural order. This time, he achieved an identical result with both intentions; the cancer cell growth was inhibited by 20 per cent.

However, the strongest effect of all occurred when he combined the two approaches, mixing an intention to return to the natural order while imagining only three cells left; his rate of cell inhibition doubled, to 40 per cent.

Restoring order

Clearly the combination of asking the universe to restore order while imagining a specific outcome exerted a powerful effect. Rein asked Laskow to repeat this combined approach, but to target the medium in which the cancer cells grew, rather than the cells themselves.

Laskow achieved the same result as when he had focused directly on the cells themselves.

Finally, Rein instructed Laskow to hold each of his five states of mind in turn while grasping one of five vials of water, which would later be used to make up the tissue-culture medium of the cancer cells.

The water treated with the ‘natural-order’ intention again had the greatest effect, inhibiting the growth of the cancer cells by 28 per cent. In this case, water apparently ‘stored’ and transferred the intentions to the culture medium and on to the cancer cells.

A very specific request

Laskow’s approach was instructive. The most effective healing intention had been framed as a request, combined with a highly specific visualization of the outcome, but not necessarily a destructive one.

With healing, the most effective approach may not be to destroy the source of the illness, but, as with other forms of intention, to put out your specific request, then move aside, let go of the outcome and allow a greater intelligence to restore order.

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Dollars and Cents About Science

Simon Singh takes money from Coca-Cola, and says that sugary drinks aren’t unhealthy

Simon Singh’s charity Sense About Science has been making unscientific claims that processed sugars aren’t deadly or feed cancer—but hasn’t revealed that it has been receiving funding from Coca-Cola, according to information published by the London Times.

The drinks giant has been spending millions of dollars on a dis-information campaign that has attempted to shift the focus away from its unhealthy products.

Simon Singh takes money from Coca-Cola, and says that sugary drinks aren’t unhealthy

Simon Singh’s charity Sense About Science has been making unscientific claims that processed sugars aren’t deadly or feed cancer—but hasn’t revealed that it has been receiving funding from Coca-Cola, according to information published by the London Times.

The drinks giant has been spending millions of dollars on a dis-information campaign that has attempted to shift the focus away from its unhealthy products.

Coca-Cola has made contributions of £20,681 to SAS between 2012 and 2013, and has also retweeted Sense About Science’s claims about the safety of processed sugars.

This year, the charity produced a ‘position paper’, Making Sense of Allergies, in which it said that health concerns about processed sugars in fast foods and drinks were a “red herring”.

The charity’s social media team also sent a Twitter message to restaurant owner John Vincent after he had written in a newspaper column that an academic had linked sugar to cancer. In its Tweet, Sense About Science said that sugar “does not create or fuel cancer.”

The tweet and the comment in its position paper were retweeted by Coca-Cola’s chief science officer Rhona Applebaum. Ms Applebaum has also attended a Sense About Science meeting in the US.

Mr Vincent said later: “It’s really worrying the extent to which companies like Coca-Cola can fund organisations that the public might otherwise think are independent.”

Coca-Cola is currently running a major dis-information campaign that claims that the obesity epidemic is caused by a lack of exercise, and not sugary drinks.

Singh and Sense about Science, you may remember, are the self-same self-righteous folks who launched a sustained attack on What Doctors Don’t Tell You. SAS members were quoted in the Times and elsewhere as calling our material ‘unscientific’.

We applaud the Times for finally outing SAS as the grubby paid lobbying group it is, masquerading as an independent voice of science. Pity the newspaper didn’t look a little deeper into the funds SAS has received from the pharmaceutical when it was busy trying to trash our magazine.

Holy Water

It’s most of the stuff of what we’re made of (we’re 70 per cent water; plants 90 per cent), there’s a hundred times more molecules of water inside us than all the other molecules put together, it covers three quarters of the planet, and life on Earth is impossible without it.

But we’re no closer to understanding exactly how water behaves. In fact, water drives most scientists crazy.

Water is a chemical anarchist, behaving like no other liquid in nature, displaying no less than 72 weird properties – and those are just what we’ve discovered thus far.

It’s is a compound formed from two gases, yet it’s liquid at normal temperatures and pressures. It is the lightest of gases, but far denser as a liquid and lighter as a solid.

It’s most of the stuff of what we’re made of (we’re 70 per cent water; plants 90 per cent), there’s a hundred times more molecules of water inside us than all the other molecules put together, it covers three quarters of the planet, and life on Earth is impossible without it.

But we’re no closer to understanding exactly how water behaves. In fact, water drives most scientists crazy.

Water is a chemical anarchist, behaving like no other liquid in nature, displaying no less than 72 weird properties – and those are just what we’ve discovered thus far.

It’s is a compound formed from two gases, yet it’s liquid at normal temperatures and pressures. It is the lightest of gases, but far denser as a liquid and lighter as a solid.

Hot water behaves far differently than cold water; when water is heated, the molecules expand and it’s easy to compress, but when cooled they move more slowly, they shrink and they get harder to compress. Hot water freezes faster than cold water does; ice density increases as you heat it up, but shrinks on melting. Water has an unusually high melting point and boiling point. The list goes dizzyingly on.

Attempts to model water as the seemingly simple substance it is continue to fail. You could spend your entire career – and many scientists do – playing around with water and feel like you’re getting nowhere.

And now we’ve learned that water does two other special things that could change everything we think about how the world works: it stores information and also broadcasts it.

Nature’s taperecorder

Two Italian physicists at the Milan National Institute of Nuclear Research, the late Giuliano Preparata and his colleague the late Emilio Del Giudice, demonstrated mathematically that, when closely packed together, atoms and molecules exhibit collective behaviors and form what they termed 'coherent domains,’ much as a laser does.

Light is normally composed of photons of many different wavelengths, like colors in a rainbow, but photons in a laser have a high degree of ‘coherence’, acting rather like a giant single wave of one brilliantly intense color.

As other scientists went on to investigate, water molecules appear to become 'informed' in the presence of other molecules—that is, they tend to polarize around any charged molecule—storing and carrying its frequency so it can be read at a distance.

This suggests that water can act like a tape recorder, retaining and carrying information whether the original molecule is still there or not.

This means that water not only sends the signal but also amplifies it.

Broadcasting information

Recently Nobel laureate French virologist Luc Montagnier discovered that water also ‘broadcasts’ information. His team carried out a ingenious series of experiments involving two test tubes, one containing a tiny piece of DNA from a sample of bacteria highly diluted in water and the other containing only water, and both surrounded by a weak 7Hz electromagnetic field.

When they checked the second test tube eighteen hours later, it too had evidence of the DNA in the first test tube as though information had been ‘beamed’ from the first and teleported to the second.

It had also occurred over many hours, and not seconds and in an ordinary room temperature, not temperatures approaching absolute zero that are usually required with a quantum process.

Interestingly the first sample of water had to be diluted many times, as occurs with homeopathy, in order for the experiment to work.

The scientific community did not know what to make of Montagnier’s little experiment and many dismissed it, claiming the great co-discoverer of the AIDS virus had gone off the rails.

Nonetheless, his little experiment carries huge implications, and not just that a big visible substance like water operates according to quantum effects.

The late Rustum Roy, a professor of Penn State University, once argued that these kinds of properties ‘definitely demolish the objection against homeopathy, when such is based on the wholly incorrect claim that since there is no difference in composition between a remedy and the pure water used, there can be no differences at all between them.”

Or, as Montagnier said: ‘High dilutions of something are not nothing. They are water structures which mimic the original molecules.”

If he and his colleagues are correct, the fact that water can serve as an information highway for all living things is extraordinarily significant when you consider that water is the basic component of life.

Think of the implications. Can we imprint information into the water we drink to affect ourselves? Is water, in effect, tape-recording our thoughts? When someone holds a focused thought, is he altering the water in the cells of the object of his intention?

Light after Life

If we have an energy field, how long does it live on after we die?

Just this question has been asked – and answered – by Konstantin Korotkov, the noted Russian quantum physicist and professor of what is now called the Russian National University of Informational Technology, Mechanics and Optics, who has created a modern-day version of Kirlian photography.

Kirlian photography

Semyon Davidovich Kirlian, a Russian engineer, discovered that when anything that conducts energy, including human tissue, is placed on a plate made of an insulating material, such as glass, and exposed to high-voltage, high-frequency electricity, the resulting low current creates a halo of coloured light around the object that can be captured on film

Korotkov came up with a means of capturing this mysterious light in real time by creating a mechanism, which he called the Gas Discharge Visualization (GDV) technique, which made use of state-of-the-art optics, digitized television matrices and a powerful computer.


If we have an energy field, how long does it live on after we die?

Just this question has been asked – and answered – by Konstantin Korotkov, the noted Russian quantum physicist and professor of what is now called the Russian National University of Informational Technology, Mechanics and Optics, who has created a modern-day version of Kirlian photography.

Kirlian photography

Semyon Davidovich Kirlian, a Russian engineer, discovered that when anything that conducts energy, including human tissue, is placed on a plate made of an insulating material, such as glass, and exposed to high-voltage, high-frequency electricity, the resulting low current creates a halo of coloured light around the object that can be captured on film.

Korotkov came up with a means of capturing this mysterious light in real time by creating a mechanism, which he called the Gas Discharge Visualization (GDV) technique, which made use of state-of-the-art optics, digitized television matrices and a powerful computer.

His equipment blended several techniques: photography, measurements of light intensity and computerized pattern recognition. Korotkov’s camera would take pictures of the field around each of a person’s 10 fingers, one finger at a time. A computer program would then extrapolate from this a real-time image of the ‘biofield’ surrounding the organism and deduce from it the state of the person’s health.

Over thousands of studies, Korotkov and many others have demonstrated that this light is essentially the energy field of a living thing, and that the state of this field mirrors the state of a person’s well-being.

Korotkov’s equipment is well regarded internationally, now routinely used by Russian Ministry of Health as a diagnosis tool, and by the Russian Ministry of Sport to assess the state of athletes training for the Olympics. Outside of Russia, thousands of medical practitioners around diagnose their patients with his machines, and they have even been explored by the US National Institutes of Health.

How long it lingers

Besides these practical applications, Korotkov’s own private passion is the effect of human consciousness on the physical world, and at one point he was drawn to the question of how long this mysterious light lingers with the body after death.

In a series of remarkable experiments carried out between 1995 and 2000, he and a team of operators, who were switched every few hours to eliminate bias, took GDV readings of dozens of newly dead men and women between the ages of 19 and 70.

Each had died from one of three causes:

  • a tranquil death, the natural end of a long and healthy life
  • a sudden death, from, say, a road accident
  • an unexpected death – from suicide, poor first aid, a blood clot – that might have been avoided with better medical care.

Korotkov’s discoveries were explosive.

For more than two days after death, there was no principal difference between the ordinary glow of live people and his group of fresh cadavers. Up until that time it was believed that this types of oscillations of light, or repeating risings and fallings in wave patterns, are only characteristic of living systems.

Light signatures

Furthermore, the pattern of this light over time followed three distinct patterns, depending on the nature of the death. Those who died a natural death had larger oscillations up to the first 55 hours, which then gently receded to more insignificant rises and falls. Those who’d died suddenly had one giant wave oscillation, which then abruptly decreased and fell to insignificance in approximately two days.

Finally, those whose deaths could have been prevented had large increases in intensity at night, with a slight drop after the first day and an abrupt drop at the end of the second day. The kind of light expelled seemed to mirror the nature of their deaths; when people died gently, so did their light. When they died more violently, their light had more abrupt changes and final departures.

To ensure that this wasn’t due to some other atmospheric cause, Korotkov controlled for every variable, including meterological data and electromagnetic conditions in the atmosphere, but there were no visible correlations.

Unlike any known pattern

Although materialists would argue that the light was simply the residual physiological activity of muscular tissues, transforming in the process of decomposition, forensic medical literature makes clear that any electrophysiological characteristics of a newly dead body abruptly change in the first few hours and either remain constant or create smooth, curved wave forms.

Korotkov’s data did not resemble that at all.

The only conclusion was that this light was living after life had ended and changing at a different point than at the time of the death of the body. Korotkov wrote a book called Light after Life about his discoveries and privately became intensely spiritual.

He began to think of as this mysterious light as an ‘energy-information structure,’ a more modern take on the soul, ultimately independent of the body, making its own transition after death.

How to forgive your enemy: be vulnerable

James O’Dea, former director of the Washington, D. C. office of Amnesty International and now co-director of the Social Healing Project, has spent many years smoothing the way for warring sides to reconcile and forgive. For many years he and Dr. Judith Thompson co-hosted “compassion and social healing” dialogues, in which members of highly divided social and political groups — Republican and loyalist Northern Irish, Turkish and Greek Cypriots, Israelis and Palestinians — meet in an attempt to heal shared wounds.

In the dialogues, O’Dea and Thompson move the emphasis away from who is right and who is wrong, and toward who is wounded and how to heal. The aim is to help each party to recognize the other’s pain or shame and, in so doing, to liberate each other from hurt and guilt.

James O’Dea, former director of the Washington, D. C. office of Amnesty International and now co-director of the Social Healing Project, has spent many years smoothing the way for warring sides to reconcile and forgive. For many years he and Dr. Judith Thompson co-hosted “compassion and social healing” dialogues, in which members of highly divided social and political groups — Republican and loyalist Northern Irish, Turkish and Greek Cypriots, Israelis and Palestinians — meet in an attempt to heal shared wounds.

In the dialogues, O’Dea and Thompson move the emphasis away from who is right and who is wrong, and toward who is wounded and how to heal. The aim is to help each party to recognize the other’s pain or shame and, in so doing, to liberate each other from hurt and guilt.

A mutual bondage

Their method draws upon the work of theologian Geiko Müller-Fahrenholz and his book The Art of Forgiveness. Born in 1940, Müller-Fahrenholz was too young to have any memory of the Third Reich or Hitler, but like so many post-war Germans, he grew up haunted by Germany’s terrible legacy and so began to consider forgiveness from the perspective of both victim and perpetrator.

Müller-Fahrenholz considers wrong-doing a mutual bondage. Any such act — including the most minor of transgressions — establishes a distorted relationship between two people. The perpetrator has stolen power, and the victim has had impotence thrust upon him. For the victim, hurt is an “impairment of the core of our personhood,” he writes

Forgiveness can never replace justice, but it can move us beyond it. In our present culture, which largely deals with transgression by punishment and imprisonment, both victim and perpetrator remain in bondage. The victim’s dignity and personhood (or goods) are not restored, and the perpetrator never fully truly comes to grips with what he has done.

An act of forgiveness, on the other hand, as philosopher Hannah Arendt once wrote, is a “constant mutual release.” Both victim and perpetrator learn to recognize each other’s pain or shame, and mutually liberate each other from hurt and guilt.

Making amends

Müller-Fahrenholz tells the story of a group of old Germans, who had fought in Belorussia as part of Hitler’s army during the Second World War. They decided to return to Belorussia in 1994 – fifty years later — in an attempt to make amends for what they’d done as young men.

Their visit occurred just after the Chernobyl nuclear accident, so they offered to build a home for children affected by the disaster. Toward the end of their stay, they visited a war memorial at Chatyn. That evening, full of the memories brought up by the visit, the Germans wanted to share the experience with their Belorussian hosts.

After a round of very personal toasts, one of the Germans, still clearly overcome by his visit to Chatyn, stood up in an attempt to talk about his own history as a young soldier. He began describing his own suffering while he had been in a Russian prison-of-war camp, but abruptly stopped. He excused himself, for a moment and then suddenly broke down. He said how deeply sorry he was for what he personally had done to the Russians and also apologized on behalf of his country.

He tried to say that it must never happen again, but his voice again broke, and he had to sit down because he was sobbing so hard. Everyone in the room — even the young people who had no experience of war — were weeping.

After a few moments, an old Belorussian woman of similar age, got up, crossed the room and kissed him.

At the moment of the German’s genuine act of confession, the full hurt was acknowledged and dignity of everyone in the room was restored. For the old woman, forgiveness was sparked by the sudden realization that the pain of others — even the pain of the perpetrator — was also her pain and that of every one of the victims.

This moment of connecting to the other’s pain is the transcendent aspect of any relationship, writes Müller-Fahrenholz, offering “a spark of courage to open up, that moment of daring and trusting which causes the heart to jump over the fence.” Ultimately it is this sudden merging that lays down “the dividing walls” between us.

The power of vulnerability

Deep truth and candid disclosure interrupts the cascade of denial, and, most importantly, reconnects the Bond by re-establishing the balance in the relationship — far more than does simply saying “sorry” or attempting to made amends. The story of the German soldier and the Belorussian woman shows that forgiveness is a restoration that corrects the distortion in the relationship. Through forgiveness, both parties are equals again.

For the perpetrator, vulnerability and full disclosure are, as Müller-Fahrenholz writes, an act of disarmament — a willingness to finally confront the truth about oneself. It shines light on the unspeakable aspects of a wrongdoing, which paves the way for atonement. The humanity of the other laid bare seems to spark responsibility in the listener and creates a catharsis and a way of moving forward.

Seen through this perspective, a disagreement or wrongdoing is an interrupted connection, and vulnerability, forgiveness and restitution a re-establishment of the connection. Transgression is, as Müller-Fahrenholz puts it, a “sin against the whole” and deep truth an end to the “war of the world with itself.”

I want, I get. . . I get ill

I am fascinated by ideas of what constitutes the good life. In the West our idea of lasting happiness and fulfilment is all about living the dream: the large income, the lovely house, the devoted partner and children, at least two cars in the garage, a couple of holidays a year in the sun. As we’re told in many popular manifestoes about manifestation and the Law of Attraction, what you want, you can get. It’s that easy.

So I started to research what exactly happens to those living the dream, in those terms.

I am fascinated by ideas of what constitutes the good life. In the West our idea of lasting happiness and fulfilment is all about living the dream: the large income, the lovely house, the devoted partner and children, at least two cars in the garage, a couple of holidays a year in the sun. As we’re told in many popular manifestoes about manifestation and the Law of Attraction, what you want, you can get. It’s that easy.

So I started to research what exactly happens to those living the dream, in those terms.

Best and brightest

In the late 1930s, Arlie Bock, director of health services at Harvard University at the time, backed by department-store magnate named W. T. Grant, conceived of the idea of taking the best and brightest from Harvard and studying them over time to determine which qualities in a person are most likely to make for lasting happiness. Besides satisfying his own curiosity Bock had big ambitions for his data, from which he promised to fashion a blueprint for “easing disharmony in the world.”

Bock and his colleagues, from an impressive array of disciplines, from medicine to psychiatry, selected 268 young men at Harvard whom they had determined to be the most promising, successful and well-adjusted. The plan was to track their progress over many years in order to determine how exactly the lives of this bright bunch played out.

For seventy years, the group — told they were part of a special elite — were poked and prodded in every conceivable way and every body part measured and compared from length of ‘lip seam’ to scrotum size.

Biological changes during physical activity were painstakingly chronicled, while psychiatrists submitted the young men to a battery of Rorschach and other popular psychological tests of the time.

In 1967, psychiatrist George Vaillant became the Grant study’s shepherd, monitoring the course of what the study’s founders expected to have been two hundred plus success stories.

In fact, in many instances, individual cases read like Shakespearean tragedy.

Disastrous outcomes

Although a number of the group achieved extraordinary outward success — the participants included the late President John F. Kennedy, a presidential cabinet member, a newspaper editor, a bestselling author, and four who ran for U. S. Senate — by age 50 a third of the men had suffered clinical mental illness. A good percentage had become alcoholics.

Many of those considered most gifted turned out to have disastrous or even pointless lives. One young man, the son of a wealthy doctor and artistic mother, was singled out as exceptionally blessed, exemplifying “the qualities of a superior personality.”

At the age of thirty-one, the young man grew hostile toward his parents and eventually the world. Vaillant and his colleagues discovered that he had lived nomadically, dated a psychotic girlfriend, smoked a good deal of dope, and dined out on a rich seam of humorous stories before dying young.

Another young man, considered one of the most “bubbling and effervescent” of the group, followed a batch of odd jobs and married and divorced several women before finally coming out of the closet, after which he became a heavy drinker and at age sixty-four was killed after falling down his apartment building’s stairs during a binge.

Bock was shocked by how his best and brightest were doing. “They were normal when I picked them,” he remarked when Vaillant caught up with him in the 1960s. “It must have been the psychiatrists who screwed them up.”

As a psychiatrist, Vaillant is particularly interested in “adaptations,” or defense mechanisms – how a person unconsciously responds to stress —whether from physical pain, conflict of any sort or even the unknown. As time wore on, the most successful among his cohort developed mature adaptations, such as humor or working out conflict constructively.

However, among those living longest, one of the chief adaptive qualities that made for a long and happy life was altruism.

One young social misfit, given to depression, found his calling as a psychiatrist in mid-life, inspired by the kindness of a healthcare worker during one of his bouts in the hospital. One tiny act of selflessness cleared his path and he went on to have a highly successful life helping others.

Pleasure vs meaning

This accords with another piece of research I recently uncovered, carried out by psychologists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Their experiment was all about examining the difference in health between people who live a fulfilling life of pleasure – what we’d normally define as the good life – compared to those who live a life of purpose or meaning.

The pleasure seekers had low levels of depression, but the psychologists were amazed to discover high levels of inflammation, considered a marker for degenerative illness like Alzheimer’ disease and cancer.

These were all perfect candidates for a heart attack.

Those whose lives were perhaps not as affluent but that were purposeful and filled with meaning, not only were not depressed, but had low inflammatory markers, indicative of rude good health.

The bottom line of the ‘ I want, I get’ good-life scenario is that it ultimately kills you. The key to a long and healthy life is living a life that concerns itself with a meaning beyond satisfying the needs of number 1.

Like garlic to a vampire: The power of your life’s purpose

It’s the big question on everyone’s mind: how do you ward off other people’s negative intention — from your interfering co-worker, that grumpy neighbor, even the stranger giving you the evil eye in the supermarket line?

Psychics usually recommend using visualization to create a mental image of protection, such as imagining yourself in a giant bubble. Scientists have tested this idea by putting volunteers into pairs in separate rooms, asking one member of the pair to send an intention to either energize or relax their partners, and having the partner uses images – a shield, a huge concrete wall, a steel fence, a pulsating white light – to act as psychological ‘shield’ to block the senders’ influences. The effect was then measured on the receiver’s autonomic nervous system.

One set of studies showed it worked, and one showed it didn’t.

To my mind, creating a psychic shield around yourself to prevent a barrage of negative influences is likely to require more than an attitude of resistance or a bit of internal imagery.

In fact, it requires the most powerful thought you have.

It’s the big question on everyone’s mind: how do you ward off other people’s negative intention — from your interfering co-worker, that grumpy neighbor, even the stranger giving you the evil eye in the supermarket line?

Psychics usually recommend using visualization to create a mental image of protection, such as imagining yourself in a giant bubble. Scientists have tested this idea by putting volunteers into pairs in separate rooms, asking one member of the pair to send an intention to either energize or relax their partners, and having the partner uses images – a shield, a huge concrete wall, a steel fence, a pulsating white light – to act as psychological ‘shield’ to block the senders’ influences. The effect was then measured on the receiver’s autonomic nervous system.

One set of studies showed it worked, and one showed it didn’t.

To my mind, creating a psychic shield around yourself to prevent a barrage of negative influences is likely to require more than an attitude of resistance or a bit of internal imagery.

In fact, it requires the most powerful thought you have.

Larry Dossey once wrote that the most powerful antidote to negative intention was the line in the Lord’s Prayer: ‘deliver us from evil’. That is one powerful thought.

But there’s an even more powerful thought, which I also came across from the work of Dr John Diamond, who discovered a simple means of grounding yourself against unwelcome influences. Diamond, a psychiatrist and holistic healer, was inspired by George Goodheart, creator of applied kinesiology, which tests the effect of various substances on the body.

Goodheart developed the technique of ‘muscle testing’, now a feature of applied kinesiology. He would ask a patient to stand facing him, with her left arm out, parallel to the floor: he placed his left arm on the patient’s shoulder to steady her, and then asked her to resist with all her strength while he pushed on her arm.

In most instances, the arm would spring back and resist the force of Goodheart’s push. However, when Goodheart exposed that person to noxious substances, such as food additives or allergens, the person’s left arm would be unable to resist the pressure of Goodheart’s push and easily be overcome.

Testing toxic thoughts

Diamond’s genius was to apply this muscle testing to toxic thoughts. When a person was exposed to any unpleasant thought, the ‘indicator muscle’ would test weak. Diamond called it ‘behavioral kinesiology’ and has tested it on thousands of subjects over many years as a means of instantly taking stock of a person’s thoughts and most secret desires.

Diamond discovered one thought that could overcome any sort of negative influence, or debilitating idea or situation. He called it a ‘homing thought’, because it reminded him of his youth in Sydney, Australia, swimming in the surf.

Whenever a large wave threatened, he and his friends would dive to the bottom of the water and hold on to the sand with their fingertips. ‘We had learned that as soon as we were faced with this situation of stress, we could dive down, grab on to our securing handhold and hang on to our “rock” until the stress passed,’ he writes.

Our connection with the divine

The homing thought that each of us can hold on to, Diamond realized, is our ultimate aspiration or purpose in life: each person’s special gift or talent that not only gives one a sense of joy but also union with the Absolute.

The term ‘homing thought’ also reminded him of the direction finder that lost aeroplane pilots use to find their way home. The homing thought can act as a homing beacon for everyone, particularly during the most difficult moments. ‘It holds us steadfast,’ he once wrote, ‘on our course.’

Diamond’s ideas have not been subjected to scientific scrutiny, but he’s used this on thousands of patients, and the sheer weight of his anecdotal evidence lends them a certain significance.

Whenever we are besieged by the darkest of intentions, we might best protect ourselves when holding on to the thought of what we have been born to do.

Yesterday – can you think that troubled past away? (sorry, Paul)

So many people wrote in to say how hard it is to get their minds around retrocausation – the idea that present thoughts can influence past actions - that I thought I’d share an even more mind-warping experiment.

This was simple experiment carried out by the Oxford University physicist Vlatko Vedral who decided to use Bell’s inequality, the famous test of non-locality – that spooky entanglement between quantum particles. Bell demonstrated that two quantum subatomic particles can remotely influence each other, even over vast distances, which completely ‘violates’ our Newtonian view of separation in space.

Could this same test be used to show that limits governing time can also be violated, they wondered? Brukner enlisted one of his colleagues at the University of Vienna, Caslav Brukner, to design a thought experiment (an experiment essentially just carried out mathematically).

So many people wrote in to say how hard it is to get their minds around retrocausation – the idea that present thoughts can influence past actions - that I thought I’d share an even more mind-warping experiment.

This was simple experiment carried out by the Oxford University physicist Vlatko Vedral who decided to use Bell’s inequality, the famous test of non-locality – that spooky entanglement between quantum particles. Bell demonstrated that two quantum subatomic particles can remotely influence each other, even over vast distances, which completely ‘violates’ our Newtonian view of separation in space.

Could this same test be used to show that limits governing time can also be violated, they wondered? Brukner enlisted one of his colleagues at the University of Vienna, Caslav Brukner, to design a thought experiment (an experiment essentially just carried out mathematically).

Non-locality through time

Their experiment rested on one of the most basic assumptions in science about time: in the evolution of a particle, a measurement taken at a certain point will be utterly independent of a measurement taken later or earlier. In this instance, the ‘inequality’ of Bell’s would refer to the difference between the two measurements when taken at different times.

Scientists like to give a particles names, and so Vedral and Brukner decided to call their photon ‘Alice’. The task now was to make theoretical calculations of Alice’s ‘polarization’ at two points of time.

Remember that quantum waves behave like a wriggling skipping ropes being shaken at one end. The direction in which the rope is pointed is called polarization.

First Vedral and Brukner calculated Alice’s present polarization, then measured it moments later. When they had finished their calculations of Alice’s current position, they went back and measured her earlier polarization again.
To their amazement, they discovered that, between two points of time, they got a different measurement of the first polarization the second time around. The very act of measuring Alice at a later time influenced and indeed changed how it was polarized earlier.

Entanglement between particles, or spooky action at a distance, as Einstein called it, can occur through time as well as space.

Futureshock

The implications of their astonishing discovery were not lost on the scientific community. New Scientist included their discoveries in a dramatic cover story: ‘Quantum entanglement: How the future can influence the past’ and concluded:

quantum mechanics seems to be bending the laws of cause and effect… entanglement in time puts space and time on an equal footing in quantum theory… Brukner’s result suggests that we might be missing something important in our understanding of how the world works.

For me, Vedral’s thought experiment holds a significance far greater than a simple theoretical one. It shows that instantaneous cause and effect not only occurs through space but also back and possibly forward through time. It offered the first mathematical proof that the actions of every moment influenced and can even change those of our past.

It may well be that every action we take, every thought we have in the present, alters our entire history. Time is a now, space is a here.

The power of observation

Even more significantly, his experiment demonstrated the central role of the observer in creating, and indeed changing, reality. Observing had played an integral part in changing the state of the photon’s position. The very act of measuring something at one point of time changed its earlier state.

This may mean that every observation of ours changes some earlier state of the physical universe. A deliberate thought to change something in our present could also influence our past. The very act of intention, of making a change in the present, may also affect everything that has led to that moment.

According to some scientists like Dutch physicist Dick Bierman, what appears to be retrocausation is simply evidence that the present depends upon future potential conditions or outcomes. n a sense, our future actions, choices and possibilities all help to create our present as it unfolds.

According to this view, we are constantly being influenced in our present actions and decisions by our future selves. Spooky action, indeed.

Entering hyperspace

Dear Readers,

I’m in the midst of studying what exactly happens to the participants of my Intention Experiments and Power of Eight groups for my next book, and it’s led me to the work of Richard Davidson, a neuroscientist and psychologist at the University of Wisconsin’s Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience.

Davidson is an expert in the communication between the brain and body. Several years ago, his work even came to the attention of the Dalai Lama, who wished to understand more about the biological effects of intensive meditation.

Davidson is fascinated by what goes on in the brains of monks. He and his associate Antoine Lutz have worked with more than 100 monks and Buddhists, studying the effect of meditation on the brain and on brain plasticity. They’re particularly interested in which parts of the brain change depending upon the particular type of meditation and how these changes relate to the object of conscious focus.

Dear Readers,

I’m in the midst of studying what exactly happens to the participants of my Intention Experiments and Power of Eight groups for my next book, and it’s led me to the work of Richard Davidson, a neuroscientist and psychologist at the University of Wisconsin’s Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience.

Davidson is an expert in the communication between the brain and body. Several years ago, his work even came to the attention of the Dalai Lama, who wished to understand more about the biological effects of intensive meditation.

Davidson is fascinated by what goes on in the brains of monks. He and his associate Antoine Lutz have worked with more than 100 monks and Buddhists, studying the effect of meditation on the brain and on brain plasticity. They’re particularly interested in which parts of the brain change depending upon the particular type of meditation and how these changes relate to the object of conscious focus.

The minds of monks

Lutz and Davidson have examined three types of meditation: focused attention, where the mediator concentrates on the in and out breaths; mindfulness, where participants maintain moment to moment awareness of all their sensations, including thoughts, in order to cultivate less reactive response to thoughts and feelings; and finally compassion and loving kindness mediation, where the meditator cultivates a feeling of love and kindness toward all other people, in order to cultivate an ever-present sense of altruism.

Each type of meditation offers a workout for a different portion of the brain and at different frequencies. Focused attention and loving kindness meditation appear to activate very fast frequencies in the brain (beta 2, at 20-30 Hz and gamma waves at 30-50 Hz), which tend to create a highly focused brain, whereas open monitoring makes use of very slow brain waves (theta brain waves of 5 to 8 Hz) so that the brain relaxes and becomes less reactive to what’s going on out there.

When Davidson and Lutz studied monks carrying out compassionate meditation, the EEG readings were activated on a scale neither Davidson nor any other scientist had ever seen. The monitors showed sustained bursts of high gamma-band activity – rapid cycles of 25–70 hertz.

The monks had rapidly shifted from a high concentration of beta waves to a preponderance of alpha, back up to beta and finally up to gamma.

Peak intensity

Gamma band, the highest rate of brain-wave frequencies, is employed by the brain when it is working its hardest: at a state of rapt attention, when sifting through working memory, during deep levels of learning, in the midst of great flashes of insight.

As Davidson discovered, when the brain operates at these extremely fast frequencies, the phases of brain waves (their times of peaking and troughing) all over the brain begin to operate in synchrony. This type of synchronization is considered crucial for achieving heightened awareness. The gamma state is even believed to cause changes in the brain’s synapses – the junctions over which electrical impulses leap to send a message to a neuron, muscle or gland.

That the monks could achieve this state so rapidly suggested that their neural processing had been permanently altered by years of intensive meditation. Although the monks were middle-aged, their brain waves were far more coherent and organized than those of the robust young controls.

Similar types of effects have been recorded during prayer. A study monitoring the brain waves of six Protestants during prayer found an increase in brain-wave speed during moments of the most intense concentration.

Altruism and heightened perception

Most research on meditation has concerned the type that focuses on one particular stimulus, such as the breath or a sound, like a mantra. In Davidson’s study, the monks concentrated on having a sense of compassion for all living things.

It may be that, like our Intention Experiments, which always have an altruistic purpose, compassionate intention produces thoughts that send the brain soaring into a supercharged state of heightened perception.

The heightened state also produced permanent emotional improvement, by activating the left anterior portion of the brain – the portion most associated with joy. The monks had conditioned their brains to tune into happiness most of the time, and we’ve discovered that participants of our Intention Experiments also experience a sense of ecstasy from being part of something bigger than themselves.

Davidson’s results offer new evidence that the brain continues to revise itself throughout life, depending on the nature of its thoughts. Certain sustained thoughts even produce measurable physical differences and change its structure.

“A brain region that controls the movement of a violinist’s fingers becomes progressively larger with mastery of the instrument. A similar process appears to happen when we meditate,’ Davidson wrote in an article in Scientific American.

Although most scientists believe that the brain, like a hardwired computer, creates thoughts, this research suggests the opposite. Form follows function; consciousness helps to form the brain, depending on what it is that you are thinking. And thinking altruistic thoughts, as we do with our Intention Experiments, sends a brain soaring into hyperspace.

Can we go back and change the past?

One of the most basic assumptions about intention is that it operates according to a generally accepted sense of cause and effect: if A causes B, then A must have happened first. This assumption reflects one of our deepest beliefs, that time is a one-way, forward-moving arrow. What we do today cannot affect what happened yesterday.

However, a sizeable body of the scientific evidence about intention violates these basic assumptions about causation. Research has demonstrated clear instances of time-reversed effects, where effect precedes cause. Indeed, some of the largest effects occur when intention is sent out of strict time sequence.

 

One of the most basic assumptions about intention is that it operates according to a generally accepted sense of cause and effect: if A causes B, then A must have happened first. This assumption reflects one of our deepest beliefs, that time is a one-way, forward-moving arrow. What we do today cannot affect what happened yesterday.

However, a sizeable body of the scientific evidence about intention violates these basic assumptions about causation. Research has demonstrated clear instances of time-reversed effects, where effect precedes cause. Indeed, some of the largest effects occur when intention is sent out of strict time sequence.

These studies offer up the most challenging idea of all: that thoughts can affect other things no matter when the thought is made. In fact, they may work better when they are not subject to a conventional time sequence of causation.

Princeton University’s former dean of engineering Robert Jahn and and psychologist Brenda Dunne discovered this phenomenon when they investigated time displacement in their random event generator trials. In some 87,000 of these experiments, volunteers were asked to attempt to mentally influence the ‘heads’ and ‘tails’ random output of random event generator (REG) machines in a specific direction anywhere from three days to two weeks after the machines had run.

As a whole, the ‘time-displaced’ experiments achieved even greater effects than the standard experiments.

The very idea that intention could work equally well whether ‘backward’, ‘forward’ or in sequence made Jahn realize that all of our conventional notions of time need to be discarded. The fact that effects were even larger during the time-displaced studies suggested that thoughts have even greater power when their transmission transcends ordinary time and space.

Future shock
Dean Radin, chief scientist for the Institute of Noetic Science, also tested the possibility that, under certain conditions, a future event can influence an earlier nervous-system response. He made ingenious use of a strange psychological phenomenon called the ‘Stroop effect’, named after its discoverer, psychologist John Ridley Stroop, originator of a landmark test in cognitive psychology.

The Stroop test uses a list of the names of colours (e.g. ‘green’) printed in different coloured inks. Stroop found that when people are asked to read out the name of a colour as quickly as possible, they take much longer if the name of the colour does not match the colour of the ink used (e.g. if the word ‘green’ is printed in red ink) than they do if the name and the colour of the ink match (e.g. if the word ‘green’ is printed in green ink).

Psychologists believe that this phenomenon has to do with the difference in the time it takes the brain to process an image (the colour itself), compared with the time it takes to process a word (the colour name).

Swedish psychologist Holger Klintman devised a variation on the Stroop test. Volunteers were asked first to identify the colour of a rectangle as quickly as they could, then asked whether a colour name matched the colour patch they had just been shown. A large variation occurred in the time it took his volunteers to identify the colour of the rectangle. Klintman discovered that the identification of the rectangle colour was faster when it matched the colour name shown subsequently. The time it took for people to identify the colour of the rectangle seemed to depend on the second task of determining whether the word matched the rectangle colour. Klintman called his effect ‘time-reversed interference’.

In other words, the later effect influenced the brain’s reaction to the first stimulus.

Radin created a modern version of Klintman’s study. His participants sat in front of a computer screen and identified the colours of rectangles that flashed up on the screen as quickly as possibly by typing in their first letter. The image on the screen would then be replaced by the name of a colour, and the volunteer would then have to type either ‘y’ (yes) to indicate that the name of the colour matched the colour of the rectangle or ‘n’ (no) to indicate a mismatch.

Radin varied the second part of the design, so that, after the participant had identified the colour of the rectangle, he or she would also have to type in the first letter of the actual colour of the letters of the colour’s name. For instance, if the word ‘green’ flashed up but was coloured blue, he or she would have to type in ‘b’.

In four studies of more than 5000 trials, all four showed a retro-causal effect. Somehow, the time it took to carry out the second task was affecting the time it took to carry out the first one.

The implications are enormous. Our thoughts about something can affect our past reaction times.

 

So what on earth is going on?

Radin discovered more evidence that our mental influence is operating ‘backwards’ in an ingenious study examining the probable underlying mechanism of intention on the random bits of an REG machine. Radin first ran five REG studies involving thousands of trials, then analyzed two of his most successful experiments through a process called a “Markov chain”, which mathematically plots how the REG machine’s output got from A to B.

For this process, he made use of three different models of intention: first, as a forward-time causal influence (the mind ‘pushes’ the REG in one direction throughout the influence); second, as a precognitive influence (the mind intuits the precise moment to hit the REG in its random fluctuations to produce the intended result by ‘looking into the future’ and passively ‘bringing back’ this information into the present); and third, as a true retrocausal influence (the mind first sets the future outcome and applies all the chain of events that will produce it ‘backward’ in time).

Radin’s analysis of the data had one inescapable conclusion: this was not a process running forward, in an attempt to hit a particular target, so much as an “information” flow that had traveled back in time.

Seed moments
So if we’re not reaching back in time, but our future is affecting the present as it unfolds, just how much of the past can we change in the sticks-and-stones world of real life?

Psychologist William Braud has pondered this issue at length. He once observed that those moments in the past most open to change might be ‘seed’ moments when nature has not made up its mind – perhaps the earliest stages of events before they blossomed and grew into something static and unchangeable: the brain of a child, which is far more open to influence and learning than an adult’s; or even a virus, which is far easier to overcome in its infancy. Random events, decisions with equally likely choices, or illness – all probabilistic moments are those most open to change.

Although our understanding of the mechanism is still primitive, the experimental evidence of time reversal is fairly robust. This research portrays life as one giant, smeared
-out here and now, and much of it – past, present and future – open to our influence at any moment.

But that hints at the most unsettling idea of all. Once constructed, a thought is lit forever.

 

The secret message of pain

We are a society gripped by constant pain of one sort or another—and life appears to be getting more painful by the year. In the UK alone, according to government statistics, at least a third of all households—representing some eight million of us—have one or more members suffering from moderate-to-severe persistent pain of some variety. This is two to three times more than the number of such sufferers in the 1970s.

Matters are even worse in the US. According to the American Pain Foundation, more than 26 million Americans ages 20 to 64 experience frequent back pain alone. Almost a third of all adults aged 65 or over report some variety of knee pain, and more than one-sixth report having hip pain or stiffness. Staggeringly, some 25 million cases of pain have to do with migraine, or lower facial pain or jaw pain such as a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.

We are a society gripped by constant pain of one sort or another—and life appears to be getting more painful by the year. In the UK alone, according to government statistics, at least a third of all households—representing some eight million of us—have one or more members suffering from moderate-to-severe persistent pain of some variety. This is two to three times more than the number of such sufferers in the 1970s.

Matters are even worse in the US. According to the American Pain Foundation, more than 26 million Americans ages 20 to 64 experience frequent back pain alone. Almost a third of all adults aged 65 or over report some variety of knee pain, and more than one-sixth report having hip pain or stiffness. Staggeringly, some 25 million cases of pain have to do with migraine, or lower facial pain or jaw pain such as a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.

Despite the fact that pain is the biggest ‘illness’ of our times—vastly overtaking cancer, diabetes or any of the other degenerative diseases in incidence—medicine’s only answer is to use chemicals to block or suppress pain signals or inflammation in the nerves, brain or muscles. Millions of patients survive on years of taking over-the-counter medications like paracetamol, aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, despite warnings against their long-term use.

It’s now becoming obvious, though, that the pills just don’t work. Most nursing-home patients remain in moderate or severe pain despite the universal use of a plethora of painkilling medications. And most of the rest of us report that, most of the time, our pain is beyond the reach of most drugs.

This is not surprising, given what we’re now learning about how the body works. The rationale for pharmaceutical medicines rests on the premise that chemical processes in the body progress in a linear and orderly fashion, so that a drug can precisely target tab A to pop it nicely into slot B.

However, we’re now beginning to realize that chemical reactions in the body are distinctly not linear, but chaotic. As frontier biologist Bruce Lipton observed in his seminal book The Biology of Belief, interactions between a small group of cellular proteins in fruit-fly cells involved in the synthesis and metabolism of RNA molecules make up an impossibly complicated web of interconnectedness that can never be reduced to the simple linear progression of cause and effect.

Recently, scientists have theorized that the more than 6,000 proteins in the human body have a network of more than 70,000 physical interactions. Proteins with certain physiological functions, such as gender determination, also influence proteins that have an entirely different job, such as RNA synthesis.

Trying to tease apart any protein’s sole job in any genuine sense becomes virtually impossible.

Furthermore, we are now beginning to recognize that Nature is economical with her building blocks: the same proteins or signals may be used in entirely different organs or tissues of the body for completely different functions.

Pain, we are learning, is not merely symptomatic of mechanical parts breaking down, but relates to a complex interaction between mind and body. New theories show that pain results not only from mechanical effects on nerves, but also from what is referred to as ‘biochemical irritation’, which can come from any physical, mental or emotional cause. New evidence, for instance, shows that pain is often the side-effect of a simple lack of vitamin D—which may be why the British, living as they do in a sunshine-poor country, have a disproportionately high incidence of pain.

One of the major causes of persistent pain is emotional stress. A number of maverick practitioners like the now retired Dr John Sarno, a clinical rehabilitative expert formerly at the New York University School of Medicine, reckons that virtually all back problems are caused by unresolved emotional stress, and some 85 per cent of his patients resolve their back pain by achieving closure of their emotional issues.

This means that many alternative forms of new medicine can treat pain by targeting mental and emotional issues. Practitioners of these new modalities recognize that pain can be a symptom of too little or too much of something our body needs, but also of something unresolved in our emotional past. In fact, addressing emotional issues through one of the new energy-medicine techniques such as tapping (Emotional Freedom Technique) has been shown to accomplish the seemingly impossible: years of intractable pain can vanish in a matter of minutes.

Clearly, it’s time that we stop trying to just temporarily turn off pain and, instead, listen harder to what it’s trying to tell us.

Lynne recommends. . . The Untrue Story of You by Bryan Hubbard

John Gray, author of Men are From Mars, Women are from Venus said that Bryan’s book The Untold Story of You had all the hallmarks of a spiritual classic, and readers are now beginning to agree with him.

At Esalen last weekend, when Bryan explained his theory, many among the audience referred to it as ‘genius’. Here’s some of the latest comments coming back from Amazon readers about this life-changing book

“I refer to the book as psychic surgery. Most profound self-help book I have ever read, and I have read many.” – Beverli Eagan

“As personal help books go, this one is right up there close to the top.” - Paul W.

“An original contribution to the restoration of sanity in anyone mired in the insanity of the past. Its greatest virtue is the simplicity in which it is written.”– Al Braidwood.

“One of the few credible guides to support us to heal into our truth and BE ourselves.” - Karen Oehme Vital Chapters Book Clubs

“I absolutely love his theory and the way he writes and explains things. . . .I am already thinking of a lot of my friends that would enjoy it as well.” – K. King

“I see this as a life-changing book for many (if not all) people and have already recommended it to family and many friends.”- Warrior

“This book has answered all of the puzzling circumstances that have and still are influencing
my life.. . . An amazing insight into what we know but 'do not see' – Janette M. Perrett

“Everyone should read this book. . . . You can really find true healing.” – Judy McLain

Isn’t it time you checked out the book that is changing people’s lives?

In the US: http://www.amazon.com/The-Untrue-Story-You-Creates/dp/1781804664/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top?ie=UTF8


In the UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Untrue-Story-You-Creates/dp/1781804664/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top?ie=UTF8

 

To Kill an Atticus

I’m one of those people profoundly saddened by the publication of Go Set a Watchman, not simply because I think everyone will benefit from it but Harper Lee, but also because it defaces an important and enduring hero who has given America hope over the years even during its worst moments.

It saddens me that Lee’s lawyer, her agent and her publishers preferred to put first the prospect of earning millions over literary judgment or their charge’s literary reputation.

I’m one of those people profoundly saddened by the publication of Go Set a Watchman, not simply because I think everyone will benefit from it but Harper Lee, but also because it defaces an important and enduring hero who has given America hope over the years even during its worst moments.

It saddens me that Lee’s lawyer, her agent and her publishers preferred to put first the prospect of earning millions over literary judgment or their charge’s literary reputation.

I’ve just finished reading Watchman. It was only a draft, rather than a polished book– one reason it wasn’t accepted all those years ago by the publishers – and it did not undergo any editing this time around. It had a more complicated aim than Mockingbird: to examine what happens when a young woman returns home and finally sees the father she formally idolized for all his flaws, in the midst of the tumultuous upheavals in civil rights fomenting in the late 1950s.

Ultimately it may have become the more complex book, but it desperately needed editing. The point of view switches; the characters are not well drawn; the action often stalls; the writing is far more pedestrian than To Kill a Mockingbird, although in places, you can still see the wit and sparkle she demonstrated in her first book.

For many writers like Lee (and Thomas Wolfe), writing is an alchemical process between editor and writer, and the writing of Mockingbird required three and a half years of painstaking back and forth between Lee and her editor.

Watchman did not have that –after all, it was the book that was universally rejected before Lee’s editor saw the potential in flashbacks of the main character’s childhood and asked Lee to make that the book that eventually became Mockingbird. The original shows off Lee’s writing at its worse and will lead many to claim that Mockingbird was a work of collaboration, particularly since Lee tried and failed several times to finish and published another book – until now.

But what saddens me most is the new portrayal of Atticus Finch in Watchman. In Mockingbird, he was a cipher, an important change agent, prepared to stand up to the entire town in order to give the black field hand Tom Robinson equal justice under the law. I have just re-read the book again, and the power of it, above all, is its message of tolerance and hope, even in the face of overwhelming odds, even though, in fact, Atticus loses his case and Robinson gets shot.

In Watchman, Atticus is 72, arthritic and a member of the ‘Community Council’ which opposes the Supreme Court’s ruling on civil rights. Atticus is not a hero, but someone willing to be seen to compromise in order to allow civil rights to proceed in slow motion and locally, rather than being forced through by federal legislation, as he considers Negroes ‘children’ with primitive desires who haven’t been allowed to grow up.

And Tom Robinson wasn’t wrongly accused of raping Mayella Ewell; it turns out they had consensual sex.

The reason why heroes like Mockingbird’s Atticus Finch resonate so deeply with us is that principled people willing to avoid compromise and to stand up against the forces of power or money, or indeed against popular opinion, are so thin on the ground.

When considering all the crises we now face on so many fronts, the sheer enormity of the problems now before us in every sector of our lives, we feel both frustrated by the inability of our leaders to solve them and unable to fix anything ourselves. Most of us throw up our hands and cry, “What can I do? What can any one person do to change anything?”

This fear grows out of the mistaken notion that the crises in our midst can only be addressed from the top down. But the change that is necessary — the one that will truly solve most problems in our individual lives, our society and indeed our world — is not just a change of policy, a new law, a new president or a tighter regulation, but a fundamental change of heart.

The change required now must come from the bottom up — from ordinary individuals making individual changes that ultimately cause a contagion of change in their neighborhoods and workplaces.

In short, from people willing to be heroes, to step outside their comfortable little lives to unflinchingly stand for something, whether that is against racism, injustice, corruption or anything else.

And that’s why we need the original uncompromising Atticus, rather a version of him cut down to human size.

The second brain

In 1992, after rediscovering a network of neurotransmitters in the gut that act in a similar way to ordinary neurons, Dr Michael Gershon, chairman of the department of anatomy and cell biology at New York–Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, an expert in the new field of neurogastroenterology, christened this phenomenon ‘the second brain’.

He and others have since found that the enteric nervous system, as its technically known, consists of some 30 neurotransmitters and vast sheaths of neurons embedded all along the nine meters of our alimentary canal—100 million of them in all, more than are present in either the spinal cord or peripheral nervous system. In fact, the self-same genes involved in the formation of synapses between neurons in the primary brain are also involved in the formation of synapses in the gut brain.

In 1992, after rediscovering a network of neurotransmitters in the gut that act in a similar way to ordinary neurons, Dr Michael Gershon, chairman of the department of anatomy and cell biology at New York–Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, an expert in the new field of neurogastroenterology, christened this phenomenon ‘the second brain’.

He and others have since found that the enteric nervous system, as its technically known, consists of some 30 neurotransmitters and vast sheaths of neurons embedded all along the nine meters of our alimentary canal—100 million of them in all, more than are present in either the spinal cord or peripheral nervous system. In fact, the self-same genes involved in the formation of synapses between neurons in the primary brain are also involved in the formation of synapses in the gut brain.

In some ways, the second brain is autonomous, controlling gut behaviour ‘on site’ and independently of the actual brain, according to Gershon. “The brain in the head doesn't need to get its hands dirty with the messy business of digestion, which is delegated to the brain in the gut.”

But even more surprising is that the primary brain is often informed about the rest of the body from the gut brain, and not the other way round. The scientific community were recently shocked to learn that some 90 per cent of fibres in the vagus, the longest cranial nerve in the body, were delivering information from the gut to the brain, but not the other way around.

Scientists like Gershon are only now conceding what alternative practitioners have long known: the second brain may play a major role in a large array of diseases.

All manner of modern-day illnesses—in fact, most of the chronic problems medicine has no answer forjoint and muscle pain, skin conditions of every variety, mood problems, allergies, sleep problems, general immune dysfunction, emotional or mental problems of all varieties, even autoimmune diseases like motor neurone disease, rheumatoid arthritis and some forms of diabetes—link back to disturbances in the digestive system.

In preliminary studies, researchers from Columbia University Medical Center have even demonstrated that a hormone secreted from the enteric nervous system is able to regulate bone mass and counteract osteoporosis.
Dr Alan Ebringer of London’s Middlesex Hospital has linked ankylosing spondylitis, a painful arthritic disease resulting in progressive stiffening of joints, with a type of bacteria that lives in the bowel and feeds off carbohydrate residues. Many patients have resolved their long-standing conditions simply by switching to a low-carb diet.

Perhaps the most surprising element of Gershon’s work is the discovery of the degree to which our second brain influences our emotions. This is not simply due to indigestion, but to the likelihood that our emotional equilibrium may rely on the subtle communication going on from one brain to the other. Indeed, some 95 per cent of the body's serotonin—the feel-good hormone associated with mood—resides in the gut, not the brain.

Work going on now at the University of California at Los Angeles is examining how the human biome—the trillions of bacteria residing in the gut—communicates with nervous system cells, and how this affects our emotions and mood.

Factor in the state of the gut bacteria and their ability to communicate with the gut brain, and you begin to recognize how central digestion is to overcoming all manner of physical and even mental illness.

What goes on in your bowel has everything to do with what goes on elsewhere in your body. The Hermetic tradition coined the phrase ‘as above, so below’ and believed it to hold the key to all the mysteries of the universe. When it comes to the mystery of illness, it may well be ‘as below, so above’.

Winning the war against the Islamic State

The terrorist attacks on Tunisia, Kuwait and France have awakened a renewed desire of our leaders to use force to overwhelm the Islamic extremists. I have a small experience of what may be an alternative, based on the Intention Experiment I did for the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

I carried out this experiment largely because I was tired of seeing the videos of the burning towers replayed, as had been done every year since it happened. With September 11, 2011, looming I was determined to offer up an alternative.

The terrorist attacks on Tunisia, Kuwait and France have awakened a renewed desire of our leaders to use force to overwhelm the Islamic extremists. I have a small experience of what may be an alternative, based on the Intention Experiment I did for the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

I carried out this experiment largely because I was tired of seeing the videos of the burning towers replayed, as had been done every year since it happened. With September 11, 2011, looming I was determined to offer up an alternative.

I decided to partner with Dr Salah Al-Rashed, a Kuwaiti from a prominent Arab family, who had singlehandedly pioneered the human potential movement in the Arab world. After setting up the Al-Rashed Centre, he began offering workshops and training programs on self-development, spirituality and mental and physical health, and had begun to fly over Western thought leaders to teach his Muslim audience in hopes of creating a bridge between the two cultures.

Salah is also a well-known peace activist, calling for peace in the places like Palestine at a time when others in prominent positions like his were calling for reprisal and continued conflict. He is, for all intents and purposes, the Deepak Chopra of the Middle East.

Salah has hosted a number of my workshops in Kuwait, Dubai and Turkey, and I’d loved the attendees every time I’d gone. His followers were the perfect group to provide my Western audience with a counterpoint to Al-Qaeda.

It was Salah’s idea to open the event by apologizing on behalf of all Arabs, but I told him the West needed to apologize as well. However justified America felt in invading Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks, the fact remained that the Afghans had lost far more than we had. Most Westerners did not acknowledge that some 100,000 innocent Afghan people had been killed, injured, detained or deported because of a war caused by a small group of radicals, who were terrorizing them as well.

Peacemakers such as my friend James O’Dea, former head of the Washington Bureau of Amnesty International, who’d witnessed public trials in such war-torn areas such as Rwanda, convinced me that one of the fasted routes to restoring accord is frank and public apology for past wrong-doing.

Salah and I were of one mind about the target: it had to be Afghanistan, specifically the Helmand and Kandahar provinces of Afghanistan, the two large provinces in the south and the major strongholds of the Taliban, which had incurred the highest number of war and terrorist-related injuries and deaths among both military and civilians of any province in the country.

In the end tens of thousands participated from a giant festival organized to mark the anniversary called One: the Event and its simultaneous broadcasts by many other transformational organizations, with many thousands signed up on our website and a reported 25,000 or so tuning in to a daily webcast I held.

It was undoubtedly the biggest mind over matter experiment in history, attracting participants from 75 countries, from Iceland to Brazil and from California to Indonesia, and also every Arab country on the planet.

After the experiment ended on September 18, we had to embark on a patient three and half month wait, to allow events to unfold over the rest of 2011 so that we could determine whether our intention had any effects, while I had to find somebody inside the American military willing to disclose the true figures to me.

Eventually I managed to wrest figures out of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), a NATO-led mission set up by the UN Security Council initially to train the Afghan Forces, but whose powers had grown leading the combat operations in the regions, and UNAMA (the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan), which tallied civilian casualties.

From these two reports, which compared casualties among military and civilians as well various kinds of enemy attacks with those of prior years, we were able to extrapolate some decent figures.

We were stunned by the huge drop in the casualty rate that occurred among civilians and the military after the 9/11 Peace Intention Experiment, specifically in our two provinces.

Overall, between September and November 2011, civilian casualties fell by an average 37 per cent, compared with the casualty rate in August 2011. All three months had figures well below the average death rate that had occurred the 28 months prior. In fact, November 2011 represented the second largest percentage decrease of civilian casualties since the beginning of 2009.

In terms of enemy attacks, NATO figures show a decrease that was 16 per cent lower than average attack rate from Sept 2009 to December 2011, the two plus years before.

Perhaps the most interesting downward trend had to do with overall initiated attacks by the Taliban. In the beginning of 2011 attacks began climbing relentlessly upward, but after our experiment in September, the numbers began a steep downward trend, falling drastically from October to December of 2011.

As the report noted about the second half of the year: “This is the longest sustained downward trend in enemy-initiated attacks recorded by ISAF.”

What made our results even more compelling was the fact that the big decreases in violence that had occurred in our target provinces of Helmand and Kandahar had not been uniformly experienced around the country.

But of course once again, a million and one circumstances that could have accounted for the decreases in violence. For one thing, there was the fact that the US and NATO had already begun to wind down the Afghan war, although that did not explain the concentrated lowering of violence in our two regions.

Although I was preoccupied with the figures, and whether we could actually demonstrate we’d lowered violence, something else even more interesting was happening around me that I began to notice on Facebook, Instant Messenger and the two surveys I’d conducted of the participants about their experience, one in English and the other in Arabic.

Thousands had tuned into the web TV station I’d teamed up with to do a daily live stream update on the event. During the daily broadcasts, which had an instant messenger chat room, we noticed that many of our Arabic participants who could write English began to Instant Message and start befriending with people from the West – and vice versa.

Hundreds of participants wrote in to describe how this experience changed their attitudes toward Arabs, and vice versa.

As one Westerner wrote: “The experience of IMing with people from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and many other Middle-Eastern countries – during the IM messages, we wished each other peace and expressed love – made me cry. It was wonderful! And, it was very therapeutic for me – a citizen of the USA.”

For another participant, a big shift occurred in his attitude to the Middle East: ‘Forever will Afghanistan be synonymous with Peace for me. It is a wonderful gift.’

Yet another wrote: “I was moving my feelings about 9/11 into action for peace and cooperation.”

This was not simply experienced by Americans; many of those from other places around the world experienced profound changes in their views of Arabs. “I felt people from Arabic countries – it was like a support from right side one can virtually lean on,” wrote one member of our community f
rom the Czech Republic. “It was like feeling brothers from far away, that was very touching,

“This day is the day that we all felt the loss and no one felt the gain. . . .” wrote Bahareh. “Your God is my God. My God is your God.”

“We are brothers,” wrote Hamad Al-Qasimi.

They began apologizing to each other and writing down their ideas about how to continue to create peace.

“Stop using the words ‘East’ or ‘West.”

“Change it from East and West to World.”

“Call it WEast.”

Gandhi was a huge advocate of the power of different faiths praying together as a means of bridging divides. And by sending intention together, essentially that’s what we were doing.

The war against the Islamic State will not be won by simply by countering violence with violence, but by connecting the East and West people to peace and to each other, one person at a time.

Something’s happening here

Recently the web portal FEELGUIDE.com ran a story about Roger Nelson and how his work is demonstrating that group consciousness has physical effects on the world during large-scale events.

In case you haven’t heard of his work, Roger, formerly of Princeton University’s PEAR project, is the architect of the Global Consciousness Project, which examines the effect of major world events on a series of random event generator (REG) machines, the modern-day electronic equivalent of a continuous coin-flipper, with a random output that ordinarily produces heads and tails each roughly 50 per cent of the time.

For his project, Dr. Nelson organized a centralized computer program, so that REGs located in 50 places around the globe could pour their continuous stream of random bits of data into one vast central hub through the Internet.

Recently the web portal FEELGUIDE.com ran a story about Roger Nelson and how his work is demonstrating that group consciousness has physical effects on the world during large-scale events.

In case you haven’t heard of his work, Roger, formerly of Princeton University’s PEAR project, is the architect of the Global Consciousness Project, which examines the effect of major world events on a series of random event generator (REG) machines, the modern-day electronic equivalent of a continuous coin-flipper, with a random output that ordinarily produces heads and tails each roughly 50 per cent of the time.

For his project, Dr. Nelson organized a centralized computer program, so that REGs located in 50 places around the globe could pour their continuous stream of random bits of data into one vast central hub through the Internet.

Since 1997, he has been comparing their output with events of great global emotional impact. Standardized methods and analysis revealed any demonstration of ‘order’ – a moment when the machine output displayed less randomness than usual – and whether the time that it had been generated corresponded with that of a major world event. Nelson and three independent analysts examine the data using a variety of statistical methods, so that any deviation from chance easily shows up.

Major world events

Over the decades, Nelson has compared the activities of his machines with hundreds of top news events: the death of the Princess of Wales; the millennium celebrations; the death of John F. Kennedy, Jr, and his wife; the twin towers’ tragedy on 9/11; the approval polls of President George W. Bush and President Obama; the invasion of Iraq and the deposing of Saddam Hussein’s regime.

Strong emotion, positive or negative – even to presidential decisions – seemed to produce order.

When Nelson analyzed data over many years, a pattern emerged. When people reacted with great joy or horror to a major event, the machines seemed to react as well. Furthermore, the degree of ‘order’ in the machine’s output seemed to match the emotional intensity of the event, particularly those that had been tragic: the greater the horror, the greater the order.

On 9/11, analyses showed that the greatest variance in the machines away from randomness took place that day out of any moment in 2001. The results also represented the largest daily average correlation in output between each machine than at any other time in the history of the project.

According to Nelson and three independent analysts an enormous increase in ‘order’ occurred during time frames relating to key moments in the drama (such as, shortly before the first tower was struck), which were likely to be the most intense periods of horror and disbelief.

As REGs are designed to control for electrical disturbances, natural electromagnetic fields or increased levels of mobile phone use, the two scientists were able to discard all those possibilities as potential causes.

The world had felt a collective shudder several hours before the first plane crash, and every REG machine had heard and duly recorded it.

In fact, the machines had reacted a few hours before the towers were hit, a kind of psychic signature, a giant unconscious psychokinetic effect created by 6 billion minds set to react in unified horror.

Group peace

In 2008, as you may remember, I ran my first Peace Intention Experiment for Sri Lanka over eight days. A straightforward analysis demonstrated a drop in injuries and deaths, and a time analysis also showed a substantial decrease in violence several months after our intention compared to the prior two years.

At the time I wanted some verification that this wasn’t all just coincidence, so I asked Roger to analyze the effect of our Sri Lanka Peace Intention Experiment on his REG machines.

Several analyses reveal that the REG machines were affected within just a 20-minute window of meditations during the eight days of our Peace Intention Experiment, and that these changes were similar to those that occurred during moments of mass meditation in areas attempting to lower violence.

But the effect was most striking during the actual 10 minutes of our experiment, when we were sending intention.

9/11 anniversary

Then in 2011, for the 10th anniversary of 9/11 we repeated an eight-day Intention Experiment, but this time targeted two provinces in southern Afghanistan.

In every regard, compared with the rest of the country, the Southwest – the target of our intention - recorded the largest decrease in figures compared to those over the year before in September, with nearly a 790 per cent decrease over the month before and a 29 per cent decrease for the year compared to 2010.

Again, I asked Roger to see if we had had any effect on the GCP’s network of REG machines during the eight days of our collective intention, just as he had done for our 2008 experiment.

Roger linked together the eight days of data to make a sequence that included all of output during all the 20-minute time periods of the eight days, paying particular attention to the 10-minute windows of actual intention each day. After the third day, he found a very steady trend – a general tendency for the outputs that accumulate during each second of the time period we were looking at to be similar.

As he wrote me, ‘Most of the deviations are negative” (the mean is less than the expected 100) – like tossing a coin and having it constantly come up tails.

When Roger strung together the deviations, the graph line went in a downward direction.
“A persistent or ‘steady’ trend reflects consistency,” Roger wrote me, “and that in turn suggests an effect that isn't just chance.”

Nevertheless, he cautioned us that the effect size was very small compared to inherent ‘noise’ – or chance data.

“Deviations which appear in our graphic displays are a combination of possible effects and ordinary random fluctuation,’ says Nelson. In other words, one single experiment like this one can’t be reliably interpreted on its own.

‘To gain useful perspective and greater statistical leverage,’ he continued, ‘it is valuable to look at other events with a similar nature.”

When he compared his results with those of the 2008 Peace Intention Experiment, he discovered virtually the same negative trend in the cumulative deviation graph.

“This similarity across the two experiments helps support an interpretation of the negative deviations shown in the current dataset as an effect linked to the Intention.”

A virtually identical effect has occurred when he’s run an REG machine during my workshops during times when I assemble my audience into small ‘Power of Eight’ groups for intention.

“The implication is that we are not isolated from each other as seems to be the case, but linked in a subtle, unconscious and inaccessible way,” Roger said.

Within the cool and neu
tral scientific language of Roger’s statistical reports lies an entirely new paradigm in the making.

To put it more simply, something is definitely happening here.

Why Father’s Day means so much to me

My father, the bright youngest child of working-class Irish, was more an inventor than a straightforward engineer. At the end of the Second World War, he designed a revolutionary kind of heating system for all the new homes being built for returning vets. In order to fund the start-up, he found two partners willing to invest. They would handle the sales and finance, while he would focus on the designs and shop floor. In a nod to the patriotic mood of the times, the three partners christened their new firm the ‘Federal Boiler Company.’

Dad’s business rapidly took off. He and my mother had moved from Yonkers and the Bronx to the pretty suburban town of Ridgewood, New Jersey. Year after year, they enjoyed the fruits of increasing prosperity: a speedboat, a second car, a second home.

My father, the bright youngest child of working-class Irish, was more an inventor than a straightforward engineer. At the end of the Second World War, he designed a revolutionary kind of heating system for all the new homes being built for returning vets. In order to fund the start-up, he found two partners willing to invest. They would handle the sales and finance, while he would focus on the designs and shop floor. In a nod to the patriotic mood of the times, the three partners christened their new firm the ‘Federal Boiler Company.’

Dad’s business rapidly took off. He and my mother had moved from Yonkers and the Bronx to the pretty suburban town of Ridgewood, New Jersey. Year after year, they enjoyed the fruits of increasing prosperity: a speedboat, a second car, a second home.

By 1970, one partner had died and dad’s remaining partner was growing ill. The company began to founder badly. After the remaining partner died and my father took over, he discovered the reason: two sets of accounting books, the official one for my father, and another revealing the truth about the other two partners’ drawings.

Before the business got bought for a song, the hefty life insurance on Federal’s directors was still in place. The partner’s widow landed a million dollars, while my father, by then in his mid-fifties, had to find work among his company’s rivals. When I returned home from college one summer, the second car and house were gone, and the house in Ridgewood he and my mother had built from scratch was up for sale.

Dad never stopped believing that he could do it all over again. On a trip to Florida, he saw another problem that needed a solution – the damage done to small pleasure boats continuously kept in the water. My parents moved to Florida, where my father set to work designing an ingenious boat lift that would scoop boats up and out of the water with just a push of a button.

During a particularly stifling summer’s day, while welding one of the prototypes, he fainted. The welding rod in his hand fell on his face, killing him instantly. Unlike his old partner, he died without life insurance. The new policy he’d meant to sign that evening was sitting on his bedroom chest of drawers.

There is one other important plot twist to this story. On Father’s Day that year, I’d called my parents once but hadn’t managed to get through that day. I got busy and forgot to call later. The next day, my mother called, and at first I thought she was calling me back so I could wish Dad Happy Father’s Day.

I started to apologize for not trying harder to get through the day before, when she was suddenly unable to speak. She handed the phone to a family friend, who told me about Dad’s fatal accident earlier that day.

I was 25 at the time. I not only never had a chance to say goodby; I never had a chance to tell Dad one last time what a great father he’d been.

But Dad handed me a powerful legacy. The entire trajectory of my family’s life became defined by unfairness – by ‘I win/you lose.’ It convinced me that fixing the problems that now beset us requires nothing less than ripping up that rulebook and starting afresh, based on something other than every man for himself.

Dad’s experience not only formed my character, but showed me my path. So, thanks, Dad, for giving me my life in every sense.

The Quantum Cook

Last month, WDDTY was saddened to learn of the passing of Dr Annemarie Colbin, one of its panel members, a visionary in the natural-food movement and a dear friend.

In 1977, largely in need of income to support her young daughters, Annemarie started the Natural Gourmet Cookery School in the kitchen of her Upper West Side apartment. As the school likes to advertise, she was teaching kale and quinoa before the general public had ever heard of it.

Nearly 40 years later, the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts, as it’s now known, which long ago moved to its own premises in Manhattan, became one of the top schools in America for natural cookery. It also became the first and only natural-foods cooking school accredited by the New York State education department to offer a chef’s training programme in the subject, graduating to date more than 2,500 natural gourmet chefs from 45 nations.

Last month, WDDTY was saddened to learn of the passing of Dr Annemarie Colbin, one of its panel members, a visionary in the natural-food movement and a dear friend.

In 1977, largely in need of income to support her young daughters, Annemarie started the Natural Gourmet Cookery School in the kitchen of her Upper West Side apartment. As the school likes to advertise, she was teaching kale and quinoa before the general public had ever heard of it.

Nearly 40 years later, the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts, as it’s now known, which long ago moved to its own premises in Manhattan, became one of the top schools in America for natural cookery. It also became the first and only natural-foods cooking school accredited by the New York State education department to offer a chef’s training programme in the subject, graduating to date more than 2,500 natural gourmet chefs from 45 nations.

Annemarie was one of the early proponents of an organic wholefood diet, and was instrumental in popularizing the natural-foods movement as the key to a long and healthy life. “Change your diet, and you change your life,” she said.

Early on, she was suspicious of processed foods. “To insure you have good food, cook it yourself: Teach kids to cook at home from scratch, not the microwave. Value the importance of families sitting down and eating together,” she once said, a vital message in an age where TV and mobile phones have replaced the art of conversation.

Annemarie went on to author a number of best-selling books, including Food and Healing, her masterpiece, became a visiting professor at a variety of universities, and numbered among her students John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Lennon’s famous stay-at-home, bread-baking phase probably began in Annemarie’s kitchen.

Annemarie was steely tough, largely due to adversity. She had been born in the Netherlands during World War II, and once spoke of the fear she’d felt as a young child, huddled in a basement among strangers during the war, before her family emigrated to Argentina. Only after knowing her for years did we learn that her first child had died in a fire, started by a careless babysitter, and that she had nearly lost her second in the same blaze..

“How did you survive that?” I once asked her.

“You get up in the morning and you go to bed at night,” she replied, a koan of hers for coping with tough times.

Although an early visionary of the natural-foods movement, in other parts of her life Annemarie was a late bloomer. In her 60s, she decided to get a PhD, choosing, as her subject, quantum biology and the effect of food on this quantum system. She became adjunct professor of nutrition at Empire State College and Touro College and, fascinated by the new science, president of the Friends of the Institute of Noetic Sciences.

Also relatively late in life—her mid-40s—she found lasting love. She began dating Bernard Gavzer, a noted journalist with the Associated Press and an NBC producer then in his mid-60s, which is where our paths crossed; Gavzer was a good friend and colleague from my days as a young investigative reporter in Manhattan.

During the Battle of the Bulge, Gavzer had saved the life of the man who eventually became Annemarie’s first husband. When the two soldiers reunited 40 years later, long after Annemarie and Rod had been divorced, Gavzer met her and then began seeing her himself.

For both, each married twice before, it was third time lucky. They got married when Bernie was in his early 70s, Annemarie in her early 50s.

“We’ll have maybe 10 good years together,” she once told me. In the event, their partnership lasted 25 years—a testimony to the fact that it’s never too late.

They were also a testimony to how to model a modern family. The five children they had between them all adored each other and became close friends; each year at Thanksgiving, Bernie and Annemarie, with their former partners and all their joint children and grandchildren, would celebrate the holiday together.

She was in her late 60s and he in his 80s, and they were having the time of their lives.

Bernie died at home at 90 after a relatively short illness, with Annemarie by his side. Six months later, Annemarie began complaining of heart failure and, although generally suspicious of conventional medicine, she was persuaded to undergo open-heart surgery. She had a stroke on the operating table and never fully recovered. After a second stroke this year, she died at 72.

Annemarie was an extraordinary pioneer to whom all of us in the natural health movement owe an enormous debt for all her prescient ideas. She was also a dear friend, whose grit and pragmatic wisdom helped see me through a few hard times of my own.

Ultimately, she outlived her far older husband by just two years, dying—in my view—of a broken heart. True love proved to be her best recipe of all.

The secret message of pain

We are a society gripped by constant pain of one sort or another – and life appears to be getting more painful by the year.  In the UK alone, according to the UK government, at least a third of all households – representing some eight million of us – have one or more members suffering from moderate-to-severe persistent pain of some variety.  This is two to three times more than the number of sufferers in the 1970s.

 

Matters are even worse in the US.  According to the American Pain Foundation, more than 26 million Americans aged 20-64 experience frequent back pain alone.  Almost a third of all adults aged 65 or over report some variety of knee pain, and more than one-sixth report having hip pain or stiffness. Staggeringly, some 25 million cases of pain have to do with migraine, or jaw or lower facial pain such as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

 

We are a society gripped by constant pain of one sort or another – and life appears to be getting more painful by the year.  In the UK alone, according to the UK government, at least a third of all households – representing some eight million of us – have one or more members suffering from moderate-to-severe persistent pain of some variety.  This is two to three times more than the number of sufferers in the 1970s.

Matters are even worse in the US.  According to the American Pain Foundation, more than 26 million Americans aged 20-64 experience frequent back pain alone.  Almost a third of all adults aged 65 or over report some variety of knee pain, and more than one-sixth report having hip pain or stiffness. Staggeringly, some 25 million cases of pain have to do with migraine, or jaw or lower facial pain such as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

 

Despite the fact that pain is the biggest ‘illness’ of our times – vastly overtaking cancer, diabetes or any of the other degenerative diseases in its incidence – medicine’s only answer is to use chemicals to block or suppress pain signals or inflammation in the nerves, brain or muscles.  Millions of patients survive their years on over-the-counter medications, such as paracetamol, aspirin and the other non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, despite warnings against their long-term use. 

 

It’s now becoming obvious, though, that the pills just don’t work.

 

Most nursing home patients remain in moderate or severe pain, despite the universal use of a plethora of pain-killing medications.  And most of the rest of us report that for much of the time our pain is beyond the reach of most drugs.

 

This is not surprising, given what we’re now learning about how the body works.  The rationale for pharmaceutical medicines rests on the premise that chemical processes in the body progress in a linear and orderly fashion, so that a drug can precisely target tab A in order to pop it into slot B.

 

However, we’re now beginning to realize that chemical reactions in the body are distinctly not linear, but chaotic.  As frontier biologist Bruce Lipton observed in his seminal book The Biology of Belief, interactions between a small group of cellular proteins in fruit-fly cells involved in the synthesis and metabolism of RNA molecules make up an impossibly complicated web of interconnectedness that can never be reduced to a simple linear progression of cause and effect.

 

Recently, scientists have theorized that the more than 6000 proteins in the human body have a network of more than 70,000 physical interactions.  Proteins with certain physiological functions such as gender determination also influence proteins that have an entirely different job, such as RNA synthesis.  Trying to tease apart or isolate any protein’s sole job in ay genuine sense becomes virtually impossible.

 

Furthermore, we are now beginning to recognize that Nature is economical with its building blocks: the same proteins or signals may be used in entirely separate organs or tissues of the body for completely different functions.

 

Pain, we are learning, is not merely symptomatic of mechanical parts breaking down, but relates to a complex interaction between mind and body. New theories shows that pain results not only from mechanical effects on the nerves, but also from what is referred to as ‘biochemical irritation,’ which can come from any  physical, mental or emotional cause.  New evidence, for instance, shows that pain is often the side-effect of a simple lack of vitamin D – which may be why British people, for instance, living in a sunshine-poor country, have a proportionately high incidence of pain.

 

One of the major causes of persistent pain is emotional stress.  A number of maverick practitioners, like the now retired Dr John Sarno, clinical rehabilitative expert formerly at the New York University School of Medicine and attending physician at the Howard A. Rusk Institute of Rehabilitative Medicine, reckons that virtually all back problems are caused by unresolved emotional stress, and some 85 per cent of his patients resolve their back pain by finding closure on these emotional issues.

 

This means that many alternative forms of new medicine can treat pain by targeting mental and emotional issues. Practitioners of these new modalities now recognize that pain can be a symptom of too little or too much of something our body needs, but also something unresolved in our emotional past.  By addressing the emotional issues with one of the new energy medicine techniques, practitioners can accomplish the seemingly impossible: years of intractable pain can vanish in five minutes.

 

Clearly, it’s time that we stop trying to just temporarily turn off pain, and instead, listen harder to what it’s trying to tell us.

How do you solve a problem like Maria?

Thank you all for those lovely statements of support after I wrote that our Intention Experiment website – a website devoted to healing the world’s ills through group prayer – got hacked into and threats on me, my family, my business, even my car were put in its place.

I was fascinated to see that among those offering support that the perpetrators get caught was Maria MacLachlan. Maria and her husband Alan Henness are effectively the Nightingale Collaboration, a tiny organization that was given seed money by Sense About Science in order to spend a prodigious amount of time reporting advertisers and practitioners of alternative medicine to the UK’s The Advertising Standards Authority.

Thank you all for those lovely statements of support after I wrote that our Intention Experiment website – a website devoted to healing the world’s ills through group prayer – got hacked into and threats on me, my family, my business, even my car were put in its place.

I was fascinated to see that among those offering support that the perpetrators get caught was Maria MacLachlan. Maria and her husband Alan Henness are effectively the Nightingale Collaboration, a tiny organization that was given seed money by Sense About Science in order to spend a prodigious amount of time reporting advertisers and practitioners of alternative medicine to the UK’s The Advertising Standards Authority. And many of the ads they've tried to stop are the ones that appear in the pages of our magazine What Doctors Don't Tell You.

As Henness writes, ‘the Nightingale Collaboration was set up to enable my wife, Maria MacLachlan, and I to share our knowledge and experience in challenging misleading claims in healthcare advertising and to encourage anyone who is concerned at protecting the public from misinformation in healthcare promotion to join us in challenging it.”

What knowledge this is is not immediately apparent as the couple appear to have no background in evaluating or studying medicine or alternative medicine (Henness reports his former employment as R&D manager for Honeywell Security and Customer Electronics).

The fact that Maria spoke up interests me a great deal, as Maria happens to be the Community Services Officer of the British Humanist Society, which campaigns ‘for an open society and a secular state with no religious privilege or discrimination based on religion or belief,’ according to its website. (Alan was former Convenor for the Humanist Society.)

On the website Think Humanism (http://www.thinkhumanism.com/humanism2.html), Maria wrote a short précis of what it means to be a humanist: ‘Humanists embrace the moral principle known as the Golden Rule. This means we believe that people should aim to treat each other as they would like to be treated themselves – with tolerance, consideration and compassion.’

That is a fine definition and one I would agree with. In fact, it’s the basis of my book The Bond. But the problem with prettily turned phrases like those is that they have meaning only when applied to real life.

From now on, I'm going to call this kind of 'do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do' activity 'the Maria Problem.'

 Simon Singh has also got a Maria Problem.  He has styled himself as the champion of free speech in science, but has been busy for nearly three years encouraging 'book burning' in the form of pressurizing and campaigning for stores and distributors to stop stocking  What Doctors Don't Tell You.

Our experience with the Nightingale Collaboration, and indeed any of the skeptical individuals or organizations writing about us, is that there is nothing about their work that creates a climate of tolerance. All of the actions taken by every skeptical organization have fomented a climate of hatred, which in turn creates an atmosphere that condones actions against the target that easily escalate over time.

This has nothing to do with free speech. They are free not to like my magazine and to publicly say so. But that is a far cry from encouraging people to interfere with our free trade or sending cyber attack dogs to abuse me online. That kind of activity is a threat to freedom and to a free, multi-cultural society.

There have been, first staged campaigns to hide our magazines from the shelves. Note this screen capture:

twitterpic1

There have been instructions to followers about how to minimize our Google search engine optimization:

screenshotpic2

There have been ‘Master Lists’ kept by husband and wife combo Michael and Laura Thomason, writing as blogger ‘Josephine Jones’ (he a database developer, she a coffee shop supervisor) and passed around from skeptic to skeptic as though we are engaged in behavior that must be monitored, blow by blow.

There have been ‘calls to action’ to engage in phony letter writing campaigns targeting specific stores like Tesco, pretending to be customers of store chains offended by the magazine; articles in the Times entirely quoting skeptics (all from Sense About Science) claiming that ‘doctors’ were demanding that our magazine be removed from the shelves; and after we chose to monitor the abusive comments on our Facebook, Twitter and blog pages, a ‘drone’ set up that automatically sends constant replies to all our blogs.

And through it all, there have been the hundreds of abusive comments, largely directed at me, many of them sexist and some of them threatening.

University of Maryland law professor Danielle Citron, author of Hate Threats on the Internet, has a novel way of dealing with these kinds of cyber crimes against women. She argues that online abuse of this nature constitutes “discrimination in women’s employment opportunities” as covered by title VII of the US Civil Rights Act of 1964.

This groundbreaking American law outlawed discrimination based on race, religion, or gender, and it was used to out white-hooded Ku Klux Klan members, who’d harassed and intimidated African Americans from voting and getting work. Citron argues that anonymous online threats and harassment similarly discourage women from “writing and earning a living online”.

“It interferes with their professional lives,” she writes. “It raises their vulnerability to offline sexual violence. It brands them as incompetent workers and inferior sexual objects. The harassment causes considerable emotional distress.”

Encouraging the kinds of targeted bullying that have been directed against me and WDDTY is exactly how things do escalate and finally get out of hand. It's how ordinary, law-abiding Germans were finally incited  to go on a rampage, smashing windows and looting the property of Jewish shopkeepers during Kristallnacht. 

The only way to stop a lynch mob is to stop creating targets of hate.  Which goes back to the Golden Rule, being tolerant of people whose beliefs are different from yours.

And that is how you solve this cyber-bullying problem, Maria.

Of cyber lynch mobs

Last Saturday I discovered that my Intention Experiment website – a website that has sought to encourage large groups of people essentially to pray together for solutions to global problems – got hacked into. The home page was replaced by the following:

Lynn McTaggart is a slut so we hacked her site. Really funny walking bitch. You have been warned so many times, and you would not listen. We therefor take things into our own hands. A small fire in your office block might be a good thing too. Please check your fire hazard warnings. We like your little mini car, C4 is such a beautiful thing, similar to your daughter. Plugging both her holes were so good. Wonder if you're as tight as she is. Hmmmm

Last Saturday I discovered that my Intention Experiment website – a website that has sought to encourage large groups of people essentially to pray together for solutions to global problems – got hacked into. The home page was replaced by the following:

ax

 

With the following message: "Lynn McTaggart is a slut so we hacked her site. Really funny walking bitch. You have been warned so many times, and you would not listen. We therefor take things into our own hands. A small fire in your office block might be a good thing too. Please check your fire hazard warnings. We like your little mini car, C4 is such a beautiful thing, similar to your daughter. Plugging both her holes were so good. Wonder if you're as tight as she is. Hmmmm"

I reprint this in full on the premise that, like Jackie Kennedy refusing to take off the pink suit splattered with her husband’s blood after he was shot in Dallas, the best way to convey the full horror of a violent act is to broadcast every unexpurgated gory detail.

The online skeptics, indeed internet trolls in general, are a modern-day version of a lynch mob. The problem with any group of self-righteous individuals operating within a hermetically sealed environment, such as a hate-fueled internet following, is that, like a genuine lynch mob, acts of violence are a calling card of acceptance by the group, each violent act by one member spurring on an escalation by someone else. Cyber gang rape becomes justified as simply an act of belonging.

As anthropologist Scott Atran wrote in Talking to the Enemy about Al-Qaeda terrorists, “People don’t simple kill and die for a cause. They kill and die for each other.”

The targets of cyber threats are almost always women (women receive about three quarters of all threats says WHO@ (Working to End Online Abuse), and the statements are invariably personal, sexual and sexually threatening.

In fact cyber threats are a fairly standard response to women with a decent sized platform who refuse to keep their mouths shut about just about anything challenging the status quo.

And like mine, more often than not, the abuse isn’t always a random act of crazies, but the deliberate acts of a particular group with a specific political agenda.

Feminist media critic Anita Sarkeesian, for instance, was driven out of her own home after receiving an outpouring of death and rape threats on Twitter. Her crime? Criticizing the glorifying of violence against women on internet games.

The most well known instance of this is the feminist activist Caroline Criado-Perez, who received continuous rape and death threats just for successfully lobbying for a picture of Jane Austen to appear on the British £10 banknote. And so did MP Stella Creasy, after offering her support of Criado-Perez.

We are told that getting justice for online threats and harassment is an uphill struggle. The police don’t know how to investigate these threats; the trolls are clever about concealing their addresses; the authorities think that Twitter and FB are just fantasyland and often don’t take it seriously unless the case is handed to them on a platter; and companies like Twitter hide under the umbrella of free speech and protection of the rights of the individual.

In fact, when Creasy tried to get Twitter to do something about the threats, and asked her growing number of followers to follow suit by contacting Mark Luckie, Twitter’s manager of journalism and news, Luckie responded by temporarily turning off his account, claiming he was being ‘abused’. At the time, Twitter claimed that this was issue was best handled by the police. End of.

Nevertheless, there are plenty of things women can do.

The usual advice is to ignore these threats, but I think that’s exactly the wrong thing to do. The best thing to do is to take the fight to them.

Here’s what I suggest for any woman who receives this kind of on-line threats or abuse.

1. Refuse to cower.
Criado-Perez retweeted the rape threats and continued to hound Twitter to do something about it, and Creasy used Twitter to inform the police of the threats. She took screen grabs to give to the police as evidence, and also warned her abusers that she was logging their threats. As a result of her actions, three of these trolls did in fact get arrested and served prison sentences, one of them a 24-year-old woman who claimed she just wrote the threats after a heavy night of drinking.

2. Insist that Facebook and Twitter be far more accountable.
In response to several online petitions calling for action, and author Caitlin Moran’s call for a Twitter ‘silence’ on August 4, 2013, Twitter rushed through a “report abuse” button that allows users to flag up offensive, threatening or abusive material. However, they need to go one step further. Like Facebook, they need to insist that users use their real names so they can be traced.

3. Out anonymity and name names.
Several years ago one of the most notorious of trolls, known as Violentacrez, operated Reddit, an anonymous online community, which among its many activities, published lewd pictures of underage girls and fostered subcommunities with itles like ‘Rapebait’ and ‘Chokeabitch’. Reddit also had a ‘CreepShot’ section where people could post pictures of teenagers with their skirts flipped up and the like taken without their knowledge. Gawker, an online US blog founded by Nick Denton and Elizaeth Spiers, worked tirelessly to discover the identity of Violentacrez, and finally succeeded in outing him as Michael Brutsch.

4. Hand over names to the police or the media.
Around the same time ‘Samantha,’ 25-year-old woman tired of ‘CreepShot’ posters,  set up her own subsite ‘Predditors’, which compiles the personal information about the men who post these photos and report them both to local authorities and also their companies. To note just one of her many successes, Coweta County Sheriff Investigator Jason Fetner was told that a 35-year-old substitute teacher was taking surreptitious photos of high school girls: "Hot senior girl in one of my classes," read one such caption. Although the photos themselves weren’t lewd, when Fetner got hold of the teacher’s phone he discovered many nude photos being sent to girls as young as 16. The teacher got arrested.

5. Get help by a friend who knows his way around the internet.
One of Criado-Perez’s abusers got caught by a producer on BBC’s Newsnight, Mike Deri Smith. He was monitoring rape and death threats sent on Twitter over the summer, and found one anonymous person using multiple accounts to send the abusive tweets. Smith contacted him, gained his confidence and eventually learned his Playstation user name, which enabled Newsnight to trace him to a Facebook account and ultimately led to his identification a
nd arrest. A friend of yours who is a dab hand online could do the same.

And finally, refuse ever to be silenced. This kind of threat carries a jail sentence of up to two years, and we intend to put whoever did this behind bars. Our sites are being monitored and we’ll find out the origin of any further abuse against us.

I am not only not shutting up, but I have asked every woman I know who believes in feminine power to publicize what happened and what we can do about it.

Make even more noise on the internet and your solitary voice will soon turn into a thundering symphony.

10 ways to speak to your political 'enemies'

The British national election is over, with a big upset of expectations and an outright win for the Conservatives. As polite British elections go, this five-week campaign was one of the most furiously fought of modern times. It often got downright ugly as politicians and laypeople from every political persuasion became starkly polarized, convinced that the other side wanted to bankrupt them, starve them, destroy the National Health System, smash up UK and then Europe, and even leave the country militarily defenseless.

The British national election is over, with a big upset of expectations and an outright win for the Conservatives. As polite British elections go, this five-week campaign was one of the most furiously fought of modern times. It often got downright ugly as politicians and laypeople from every political persuasion became starkly polarized, convinced that the other side wanted to bankrupt them, starve them, destroy the National Health System, smash up UK and then Europe, and even leave the country militarily defenseless.

So now that the public have spoken with their vote, how do all of us move from a position of extreme polarization and embrace 'the other'? How do we learn to speak to political enemies?

Whenever I think of a triumph in communication skills, I think of Orland Bishop and what would appear to be a fool’s errand. Bishop’s life work is instructing young black gang members in the art of communication, and his chosen patch to spread the word is Watts, a district in southern Los Angeles considered so devoid of the possibility of redemption, after decades of poverty and violence, that it is now chiefly known for its record of negative achievement.

In the mid-nineties, the street gangs of Watts formed the epicenter of America’s crack cocaine business. Such was the rivalry between the main gangs, the Crips and the Bloods, that the wars between them and their their offshoots claimed five times as many lives as did all the years of the troubles in Northern Ireland. T

he white establishment’s solution, the creation of the special CRASH division (the Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums) within the Los Angeles Police Department, resulted in the largest internal affairs investigation of what turned out to be the largest incidence of police misconduct in America’s history — for unprovoked shootings and beatings, framing suspects, planting evidence, and the department’s own share of drug dealing and bank robbery.

During the riots of 1965, set off by the arrest of a black youth and his family on a trumped-up drunk-driving charge, black residents burned and looted nearly 1000 mostly white-owned businesses. Some 15,000 troops of National Guardsmen and Armored Calvary — more than had ever been deployed on the nation’s own soil — were called in, ostensibly to prevent Watts from burning itself to the ground.

“Monkeys in a zoo,” is how the LAPD’s police chief William Parker publicly summed up the situation, sparking off another round of looting and arson only contained when Guardsmen cordoned off all of Watts from the rest of Los Angeles like an epidemic requiring quarantine.

Thirty years later, Watts rose again as the symbol of the uneven hand of American justice after a tourist’s video captured policemen brutally beating black motorist Rodney King, and the officers involved were acquitted of all charges.

This latest incident set off a six-day riot of arson, assault and murder, leaving fifty-three dead, thousands injured, and more than one billion dollars in damages.

In the ongoing dialogue between the races in America, Watts is the place where no one is doing much listening.

Nevertheless, here, in this No Man’s Land, Orland Bishop’s work teaches rival black gang members how to relate to each other. And he’s succeeding because of one simple principle – changing the currency of the relationship.

Currently most relationships are forged from the erroneous idea that we have to be the same to get along and that differences between us are to be avoided at all costs.

In fact, conflict is considered so antithetical to the human experience that when others disagree with us, we conclude that they must be stupid or ill-informed. To justify this position, we find it necessary to debate them, demonize them, and announce their ignorance to the world. In our minds, conflict can be resolved only with I win, you lose.

Bishop believes that a gang, like a political party, is simply a manifestation of the thwarted human need to belong. “They have an instinct toward oneness, which is why they form gangs,” says Nelsa Libertad Curbelo Cora, a peace worker with young gang members in Guayaguil, Ecuador’s version of Watts.

Bishop’s work is all about teaching his young gang members to move beyond “I” and “you” – or, more commonly, “us” and “them.”

Once we view ourselves as a part of a bigger whole, we begin to act differently toward each other. By making this one simple change of perspective and offering yourself as a vehicle of service to the connection, you will easily find the Bond that is always present and embrace difference within that larger experience of connection.

In Bishop’s workshops, the focus shifts from a search for sameness, to a sharing of the deepest aspects of each other, moving past superficiality to the deepest truth of who you are and what you dream for.

“When you share this deeply, as he suggests, you surrender to your natural impulse to merge together and you find the common ground of the space between you – the place of your common humanity. “Shared meaning,” says Bishop, “allows for different perceptions – or realities – to exist together.”

Bishop coaches the young men in the art of speaking and listening deeply and from the heart — without being critical or judgmental. During this type of deep sharing, the pull of wholeness builds trust and loosens their attachments to entrenched positions. The very intensity of the experience lends itself to the establishment of new alliances and a larger vision for the future.

So here are my 10 steps to overcoming deep conversational divides when you meet people of a different political persuasion.

1. Invite cooperation from the beginning when raising an issue.

2. Listen to the other with a view to understanding, not agreement or disagreement. Don’t try to win the debate, convince others of your “rightness,” or convert them to another point of view

3. Stay absolutely present. Don’t let your mind wander or begin formulating your response when the other person is speaking.

4. Identify and explore the other person’s core values and interests: underlying hopes, needs, values, concerns, motivations, fears, and ideals. . Both Conservatives and Labour supporters have many identical interests: a love of family, God, children, home, and country. All of us want to fix the economy, the roads, the government, the high price of petrol, our educational system. Working out how to do so together affords us an opportunity to come together for a larger goal, at which point superficial differences diminish in importance.

5. Separate the other person’s suggested solutions for satisfying the core interests from the interests themselves. They are not the same.

6. Reveal the back story of why you believe what you believe. Sharing deeply invites deep understanding and connection.

7. Slow down before responding.

8. When disagreements occur, listen harder. You’ll often find that the problem is a gap in your knowledge of the events in the person’s life that have led him to that position.

9. During differences, seek to change the space between you. Change the energy that flows between you by changing your tempo, your attitude, your facial expressions. Make your body language and unspoken communication transmit your desire to connect.< /p>

10. Brainstorm creatively together all possible ways to solve a given problem. Imagine a positive outcome.

When generosity and wholeness are the currency, the game starts changing.

Casting the first stone

Zero dark dirty

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

Although no charges were ever filed against him, Wright never got his seized property back. As health writer Dr. Julian Whittaker wrote, it was a wonder he didn’t go out of business.

Although the FDA has carried out more than 25 such ‘vitamin raids’ since that time, Britain has now enthusiastically entered the fray with similar commando-style attacks on natural medicine.

As I mentioned in these pages before, on 3 February of this year, 10 investigators from the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) arrived unannounced at the new laboratory of Immune Biotech in Milton, Cambridgeshire, four of them wearing bullet-proof vests, and in front of the two terrified female scientists, confiscated 10,000 vials of the naturally occurring glycoprotein called GcMAF before closing down the facility.

Here’s the rest of the story.

MHRA issued a statement on its website justifying its draconian measures, claiming that the production site did not meet Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. As Gerald Heddell, MHRA Director of Inspection, Enforcement and Standards announced, in justifying the Navy SEAL-like tactics, “These products may pose a significant risk to people’s health. Not only were the manufacturing conditions unacceptable but the originating material was not suitable for human use.”

Not a medicine

The confiscated goods are not officially a ‘medicine’, but a glycoprotein, produced naturally by the body.

According to David Noakes, Immuno Biotech’s CEO, all the claims about their production process are invalid because the 10,000 vials were in fact produced elsewhere. Immune Biotech had just moved laboratories over Christmas, he says, into a larger facility meant to house research and production of the product, built to better standards than their previous one.

“Although the manufacturing equipment and all existing stock had been moved and stored, it was a shell of a building which we were converting,” he says.

Builders had not finishing transforming the facility, which had been offices, into a laboratory. Furthermore, the laboratory’s chief scientist Rod Smith had had a heart attack during Christmas and was still at home recuperating. No manufacture could proceed without him.

The MHRA originally referred to the facility as a ‘makeshift lab’ and the scientists are as ‘hobbyists with a degree in real ale brewing’.

The laboratory where the vials were actually produced was in fact a purpose built campus of laboratories in Cambridge’s Innovation Science Park, says Noakes, and the chief scientist Rod Smith is a biochemical scientist with a PhD.

Marco Ruggiero, the Italian doctor who discovered the importance of this glycoprotein and cancer, is a microbiologist once hired by the US’s National Institutes of Health to investigate the cause of AIDS and treatment of cancer.

The only reason he does not have GMP certificates, he says, is cost – it costs some £5 million to get such a license, he says. ‘Every batch is checked by Wickham Laboratories using rigorous tests for sterility. There are nine tests carried out on every batch,” says Noakes.

Worldwide supplier

Up until the February raid, Immune Biotech had been supplying hundreds of clinics around the world and more than 9000 patients, according to Noakes. As a resident of Guernsey, where he had his head offices, he had also supplied some 170 Guernsey residents suffering from a variety of illnesses with GcMAF, purportedly for free.

The tip off to the MHRA, says Noakes, came from the Health and Social Services Department (NSSD), Guernsey’s equivalent of the National Health Service.

For years, Noakes had been in constant contact with various ministers about his product, according to Commerce Minister Kevin Stewart, even setting up a special private conference for them, during which scientists would present evidence about GcMAF. Until February, they tolerated importation of GcMAF for their residents, so long as it was not supplied for commercial gain.

In fact, Ed Freestone, Guernsey’s chief pharmacist, has been quoted as saying ‘There is no current information suggesting the product has caused direct harm to anyone’s health.’

An MHRA press statement also confirms: ‘To date we have received no reports of side effects caused by this product.”

Product banned

After the raid, Guernsey authorities have now banned both importation and exportation of the product, leaving about 100 patients with serious illnesses, including cancer, without the product they claim is saving their lives.

These patients have now formed a ‘Cure Cancer support Group’ and took out an advertisement in the Guernsey Herald, pleading with the HSSD to allow them to continue to receive supplies of GcMAF.

Noakes believes that the real trigger behind the raid was government’s cosy relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. ‘The MHRA does not want to see this product on the market because its job is to maintain the monopoly and stick up for vested interests in the pharmaceutical industry,” he says.

Immune modulators like GcMAF, naturally present in mushrooms and oats or zinc in meat, are seen as major new growth areas for Big Pharma.

Furthermore, Guernsey has been targeted to abide by pharmaceutically led European law affecting unregistered medicines and food supplements. According to the Alliance for Natural Health, Guernsey’s medical regulator has been heavily lobbied by UK authorities and business lobbies, including the UK’s Food Supplement Manufacturers Association.

The long arm of Big Pharma

Drug company influence is now increasingly inherent in drug regulatory agencies. In the US, the pharmaceutical industry now largely funds the FDA.

Like the FDA, the UK government has handed over regulatory financial muscle to Big Pharma. According to his MHRA biography chief inspector Heddell has worked in senior roles in manufacturing and quality assurance for The Wellcome Foundation, Glaxo Wellcome and GlaxoSmithKline.

This is not the first time Noakes has encountered official harassment. In July, NatWest closed his business bank account, forcing him to move his funds to Shroders Bank Guernsey. But following the recent raid, this account has also been closed, only this time the bank has not returned the £1.2 million, which Noakes doesn’t believe he will ever get back from the UK government.

Noakes has no recourse to sue the UK government while it holds all his money.

If he money is not returned, Noakes is likely to have to agree to a takeover of Immuno Biotech by a competitor in a European countray with kinder regulatory laws.

If the evidence continues to pour in about the benefits of GcMAF, let’s hope Noakes’ successors can continue to dive clear of stealth bombers.

Zero dark dirty

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

Although no charges were ever filed against him, Wright never got his seized property back. As health writer Dr. Julian Whittaker wrote, it was a wonder he didn’t go out of business.

Although the FDA has carried out more than 25 such ‘vitamin raids’ since that time, Britain has now enthusiastically entered the fray with similar commando-style attacks on natural medicine.

As I mentioned in these pages before, on 3 February of this year, 10 investigators from the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) arrived unannounced at the new laboratory of Immune Biotech in Milton, Cambridgeshire, four of them wearing bullet-proof vests, and in front of the two terrified female scientists, confiscated 10,000 vials of the naturally occurring glycoprotein called GcMAF before closing down the facility.

Here’s the rest of the story.

MHRA issued a statement on its website justifying its draconian measures, claiming that the production site did not meet Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. As Gerald Heddell, MHRA Director of Inspection, Enforcement and Standards announced, in justifying the Navy SEAL-like tactics, “These products may pose a significant risk to people’s health. Not only were the manufacturing conditions unacceptable but the originating material was not suitable for human use.”

Not a medicine

The confiscated goods are not officially a ‘medicine’, but a glycoprotein, produced naturally by the body.

According to David Noakes, Immuno Biotech’s CEO, all the claims about their production process are invalid because the 10,000 vials were in fact produced elsewhere. Immune Biotech had just moved laboratories over Christmas, he says, into a larger facility meant to house research and production of the product, built to better standards than their previous one.

“Although the manufacturing equipment and all existing stock had been moved and stored, it was a shell of a building which we were converting,” he says.

Builders had not finishing transforming the facility, which had been offices, into a laboratory. Furthermore, the laboratory’s chief scientist Rod Smith had had a heart attack during Christmas and was still at home recuperating. No manufacture could proceed without him.

The MHRA originally referred to the facility as a ‘makeshift lab’ and the scientists are as ‘hobbyists with a degree in real ale brewing’.

The laboratory where the vials were actually produced was in fact a purpose built campus of laboratories in Cambridge’s Innovation Science Park, says Noakes, and the chief scientist Rod Smith is a biochemical scientist with a PhD.

Marco Ruggiero, the Italian doctor who discovered the importance of this glycoprotein and cancer, is a microbiologist once hired by the US’s National Institutes of Health to investigate the cause of AIDS and treatment of cancer.

The only reason he does not have GMP certificates, he says, is cost – it costs some £5 million to get such a license, he says. ‘Every batch is checked by Wickham Laboratories using rigorous tests for sterility. There are nine tests carried out on every batch,” says Noakes.

Worldwide supplier

Up until the February raid, Immune Biotech had been supplying hundreds of clinics around the world and more than 9000 patients, according to Noakes. As a resident of Guernsey, where he had his head offices, he had also supplied some 170 Guernsey residents suffering from a variety of illnesses with GcMAF, purportedly for free.

The tip off to the MHRA, says Noakes, came from the Health and Social Services Department (NSSD), Guernsey’s equivalent of the National Health Service.

For years, Noakes had been in constant contact with various ministers about his product, according to Commerce Minister Kevin Stewart, even setting up a special private conference for them, during which scientists would present evidence about GcMAF. Until February, they tolerated importation of GcMAF for their residents, so long as it was not supplied for commercial gain.

In fact, Ed Freestone, Guernsey’s chief pharmacist, has been quoted as saying ‘There is no current information suggesting the product has caused direct harm to anyone’s health.’

An MHRA press statement also confirms: ‘To date we have received no reports of side effects caused by this product.”

Product banned

After the raid, Guernsey authorities have now banned both importation and exportation of the product, leaving about 100 patients with serious illnesses, including cancer, without the product they claim is saving their lives.

These patients have now formed a ‘Cure Cancer support Group’ and took out an advertisement in the Guernsey Herald, pleading with the HSSD to allow them to continue to receive supplies of GcMAF.

Noakes believes that the real trigger behind the raid was government’s cosy relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. ‘The MHRA does not want to see this product on the market because its job is to maintain the monopoly and stick up for vested interests in the pharmaceutical industry,” he says.

Immune modulators like GcMAF, naturally present in mushrooms and oats or zinc in meat, are seen as major new growth areas for Big Pharma.

Furthermore, Guernsey has been targeted to abide by pharmaceutically led European law affecting unregistered medicines and food supplements. According to the Alliance for Natural Health, Guernsey’s medical regulator has been heavily lobbied by UK authorities and business lobbies, including the UK’s Food Supplement Manufacturers Association.

The long arm of Big Pharma

Drug company influence is now increasingly inherent in drug regulatory agencies. In the US, the pharmaceutical industry now largely funds the FDA.

Like the FDA, the UK government has handed over regulatory financial muscle to Big Pharma. According to his MHRA biography chief inspector Heddell has worked in senior roles in manufacturing and quality assurance for The Wellcome Foundation, Glaxo Wellcome and GlaxoSmithKline.

This is not the first time Noakes has encountered official harassment. In July, NatWest closed his business bank account, forcing him to move his funds to Shroders Bank Guernsey. But following the recent raid, this account has also been closed, only this time the bank has not returned the £1.2 million, which Noakes doesn’t believe he will ever get back from the UK government.

Noakes has no recourse to sue the UK government while it holds all his money.

If he money is not returned, Noakes is likely to have to agree to a takeover of Immuno Biotech by a competitor in a European countray with kinder regulatory laws.

If the evidence continues to pour in about the benefits of GcMAF, let’s hope Noakes’ successors can continue to dive clear of stealth bombers.

Zero dark dirty

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

In 1992, Armed police and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) officials burst into the offices of nutritional pioneer Dr. Jonathan Wright in Seattle Washington, guns drawn, and seized more than a hundred thousand dollars of computers, medical records and nutritional supplements. The reason for the raid was mystifying; there had been no patient complaints against him. His crime? Treating patients with vitamins.

Although no charges were ever filed against him, Wright never got his seized property back. As health writer Dr. Julian Whittaker wrote, it was a wonder he didn’t go out of business.

Although the FDA has carried out more than 25 such ‘vitamin raids’ since that time, Britain has now enthusiastically entered the fray with similar commando-style attacks on natural medicine.

As I mentioned in these pages before, on 3 February of this year, 10 investigators from the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) arrived unannounced at the new laboratory of Immune Biotech in Milton, Cambridgeshire, four of them wearing bullet-proof vests, and in front of the two terrified female scientists, confiscated 10,000 vials of the naturally occurring glycoprotein called GcMAF before closing down the facility.

Here’s the rest of the story.

MHRA issued a statement on its website justifying its draconian measures, claiming that the production site did not meet Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. As Gerald Heddell, MHRA Director of Inspection, Enforcement and Standards announced, in justifying the Navy SEAL-like tactics, “These products may pose a significant risk to people’s health. Not only were the manufacturing conditions unacceptable but the originating material was not suitable for human use.”

Not a medicine

The confiscated goods are not officially a ‘medicine’, but a glycoprotein, produced naturally by the body.

According to David Noakes, Immuno Biotech’s CEO, all the claims about their production process are invalid because the 10,000 vials were in fact produced elsewhere. Immune Biotech had just moved laboratories over Christmas, he says, into a larger facility meant to house research and production of the product, built to better standards than their previous one.

“Although the manufacturing equipment and all existing stock had been moved and stored, it was a shell of a building which we were converting,” he says.

Builders had not finishing transforming the facility, which had been offices, into a laboratory. Furthermore, the laboratory’s chief scientist Rod Smith had had a heart attack during Christmas and was still at home recuperating. No manufacture could proceed without him.

The MHRA originally referred to the facility as a ‘makeshift lab’ and the scientists are as ‘hobbyists with a degree in real ale brewing’.

The laboratory where the vials were actually produced was in fact a purpose built campus of laboratories in Cambridge’s Innovation Science Park, says Noakes, and the chief scientist Rod Smith is a biochemical scientist with a PhD.

Marco Ruggiero, the Italian doctor who discovered the importance of this glycoprotein and cancer, is a microbiologist once hired by the US’s National Institutes of Health to investigate the cause of AIDS and treatment of cancer.

The only reason he does not have GMP certificates, he says, is cost – it costs some £5 million to get such a license, he says. ‘Every batch is checked by Wickham Laboratories using rigorous tests for sterility. There are nine tests carried out on every batch,” says Noakes.

Worldwide supplier

Up until the February raid, Immune Biotech had been supplying hundreds of clinics around the world and more than 9000 patients, according to Noakes. As a resident of Guernsey, where he had his head offices, he had also supplied some 170 Guernsey residents suffering from a variety of illnesses with GcMAF, purportedly for free.

The tip off to the MHRA, says Noakes, came from the Health and Social Services Department (NSSD), Guernsey’s equivalent of the National Health Service.

For years, Noakes had been in constant contact with various ministers about his product, according to Commerce Minister Kevin Stewart, even setting up a special private conference for them, during which scientists would present evidence about GcMAF. Until February, they tolerated importation of GcMAF for their residents, so long as it was not supplied for commercial gain.

In fact, Ed Freestone, Guernsey’s chief pharmacist, has been quoted as saying ‘There is no current information suggesting the product has caused direct harm to anyone’s health.’

An MHRA press statement also confirms: ‘To date we have received no reports of side effects caused by this product.”

Product banned

After the raid, Guernsey authorities have now banned both importation and exportation of the product, leaving about 100 patients with serious illnesses, including cancer, without the product they claim is saving their lives.

These patients have now formed a ‘Cure Cancer support Group’ and took out an advertisement in the Guernsey Herald, pleading with the HSSD to allow them to continue to receive supplies of GcMAF.

Noakes believes that the real trigger behind the raid was government’s cosy relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. ‘The MHRA does not want to see this product on the market because its job is to maintain the monopoly and stick up for vested interests in the pharmaceutical industry,” he says.

Immune modulators like GcMAF, naturally present in mushrooms and oats or zinc in meat, are seen as major new growth areas for Big Pharma.

Furthermore, Guernsey has been targeted to abide by pharmaceutically led European law affecting unregistered medicines and food supplements. According to the Alliance for Natural Health, Guernsey’s medical regulator has been heavily lobbied by UK authorities and business lobbies, including the UK’s Food Supplement Manufacturers Association.

The long arm of Big Pharma

Drug company influence is now increasingly inherent in drug regulatory agencies. In the US, the pharmaceutical industry now largely funds the FDA.

Like the FDA, the UK government has handed over regulatory financial muscle to Big Pharma. According to his MHRA biography chief inspector Heddell has worked in senior roles in manufacturing and quality assurance for The Wellcome Foundation, Glaxo Wellcome and GlaxoSmithKline.

This is not the first time Noakes has encountered official harassment. In July, NatWest closed his business bank account, forcing him to move his funds to Shroders Bank Guernsey. But following the recent raid, this account has also been closed, only this time the bank has not returned the £1.2 million, which Noakes doesn’t believe he will ever get back from the UK government.

Noakes has no recourse to sue the UK government while it holds all his money.

If he money is not returned, Noakes is likely to have to agree to a takeover of Immuno Biotech by a competitor in a European countray with kinder regulatory laws.

If the evidence continues to pour in about the benefits of GcMAF, let’s hope Noakes’ successors can continue to dive clear of stealth bombers.

A special letter from Lynne McTaggart

Join me in a year-long, life-healing experience and be part of my next book

‘My life – everything about it – my health, relationships, outlook, energy level, happiness, openness, etc. just keep improving; I've plainly shifted.’

That’s the typical comment of one of the participants in one of my Intention Experiments. In case you don’t know, besides the science of cutting edge alternative medicine, I’m also fascinated by the science of spirituality. In 2007, I created the world’s largest global laboratory and, with a team of prestigious scientists, conducted the first controlled experiments into the power of mass intention to affect the physical world.

Join me in a year-long, life-healing experience and be part of my next book

‘My life – everything about it – my health, relationships, outlook, energy level, happiness, openness, etc. just keep improving; I've plainly shifted.’

That is the typical comment of one of the participants in one of my Intention Experiments. In case you don’t know, besides the science of cutting edge alternative medicine, I’m also fascinated by the science of spirituality. In 2007, I created the world’s largest global laboratory and, with a team of prestigious scientists, conducted the first controlled experiments into the power of mass intention to affect the physical world.

In the 27 formal experiments we’ve run to date, 23 have evidenced measurable, mostly significant change. Our well-controlled experiments suggest that group intention can make plants grow up to twice as high as normal, change the pH of (and so purifying) polluted water, and even lower violence in a war-torn area.

Besides these formal scientific studies I’ve also run hundreds of informal Intention Experiment workshops with large and small groups, in person and in teleseminars.

Powerful ‘borrowed’ benefit

What I have discovered turns everything we think about the power of thoughts and intention on its head. For the most powerful effect of an intention – an effect overlooked by virtually every popular book on the subject – is on the intenders themselves.

The results of these formal and informal ‘experiments’ are astonishing, paradigm-busting and life-transforming.

According to the thousands of individual case histories I’ve gathered, this state proves so powerful and life-transforming that it enables individual miracles – healings, healed relationships, major life transformations – to take place.

They repeatedly demonstrate that ‘praying’ in a group is transformative for all involved and heals the healers, as well as the healed.

Here’s a tiny sampling of the healings I’ve recorded in a recent survey:

‘My carpal tunnel injury improved, and I felt very relaxed. Even slept better.’

‘I suffered with my knee for almost three years. After this experiment all the pain I used to have was gone, completely.’

‘I have a problem of pain in left arm and, it now seems ok.’

‘I woke up with a sudden lupus flare (right shoulder) on Monday morning – flare was gone by Thursday. Feel am now (finally) close to being truly healthy.’

Sandra had been overwhelmed for most of a year by shock, grief and depression about her changed circumstances after the sudden death of her husband. ‘Since your last experiment it is all gone. I could not believe it. It is just amazing.’

Besides healed bodies, many of our participant record healed relationships.

Three-quarters of our participants noticed changes in their relationships with others after participating in one experiment. People reported getting along better with clients, ex-husbands, siblings, neighbours, even ‘not-so-nice bosses.’

‘I'm getting along with my older sister and that never happens. It’s like her heart is softening or opening.’

‘A particular ongoing conflict with my husband came finally to full confrontation, but
then moved quickly into resolution and solutions.’

‘I was holding hands with a friend I just made peace with, after a long time of not talking to one another.’

In fact, for more than half the experience opened them up to universal love – permanently.

‘I feel more interested in conversing with strangers. People seem more attracted to talking with me.’

‘I see myself in everyone I meet, experiencing their feelings, finding compassion.

‘I generally feel a greater connection to my fellow humans everywhere, and more accepting than judgmental.’

Many reported that they had made important life shifts:

‘I am more loving towards myself and I don´t criticize myself as hard as I used to.

‘I am more compassionate and less committed to specific outcomes. I am more flexible and easy-going in situations, less triggered.’

‘I am much more productive than I have been in the last 10 years, and yet I am also more nurturing and caring towards myself. And my relationships have improved due to it or alongside this change in myself.’

‘My life has been consistently changing toward a more peaceful me lately.’

These results have been so astonishing to me that I decided to write about this in my next book. I’ve observed and surveyed thousands of participants about these effects. And these results have inspired me – for the first time – to offer you the opportunity work with me and a select group of others over an entire year.

During this incredible year, you will

  • Experience an intensive training course with me with 90 minute interactive teleseminar sessions over six consecutive weeks
  • Be given an ‘intention buddy’ for the entire year and a 'Power of Eight group', with a special address on Google Hangout
  • Enjoy regular access to me, with monthly ‘checkups’, so that I can help you reach your goals over the year
  • Have your own progress charted and quantified, so you can readily observe your own personal transformation.
  • Have the incredible opportunity to have your progress and achievements included in the book I am now writing

This teleseminar kicks off on April 11, and we’ve had overwhelming response and I want to keep numbers strictly limit numbers, so if you’d like to find out more or book your place, click here

The Holy Instant

‘I felt like I was part of a power surge (sort of like what I imagine it would be like to be locked in a tractor beam like is described on Star Trek). I was being pulled along on this giant wave of energy while also being part of the cause of the wave – it was very powerful.’

‘I felt like I was part of a power surge (sort of like what I imagine it would be like to be locked in a tractor beam like is described on Star Trek). I was being pulled along on this giant wave of energy while also being part of the cause of the wave – it was very powerful.’

This is just one of similar comments from a participant in one of our large-scale Peace Intention Experiment, and ever since that time I’ve been puzzling over what exactly happens when people come together to intend as a group. Our participants continuously report experiences they describe as ecstatic and emotionally profound (many even sob uncontrollably during the experiment), and they feel such an overwhelming sense of connection with the other participants and the target that this attachment carries on after the experiment is over.

‘I was completely overwhelmed by so much love. I felt immense gratitude and tears just kept flowing. The energy kept flowing for hours and afterward I also slept peacefully. I felt deeply connected and at peace.’

The responses I was recording in my surveys are not the enthusiastic accounts of satisfied participants. These are descriptions of nothing so much as mystical experience. It is the moment, as St Teresa de Avila rapturously experienced it, when we are ‘cocooned in divine love.’ It is the moment, as an indigenous shaman once put it, when ‘things often seem to blaze.’ It is, as the Course in Miracles refers to it ,‘the holy instant.’

I’ve been studying the major religious mystics and many indigenous shamanic practices to try to get my head round what exactly is going on here. Just the act of participation in a large group experience and thinking with one voice seems to create something akin to the unio mystica, that moment when the self feels a complete merging with the Absolute in a state of overwhelming love. It is, I’ve come to realize, nothing less than a spiritual orgasm.

At the end of his life, US psychologist Abraham Maslow turned his attention to these ‘peak experiences’ as a common element of human experience and not simply the preserve of the mystic. There are certain common threads; the saint, the prophet, the channeler, the indigenous native all describe that transcendent moment when you sense the universe as integrated and whole, when you move beyond a sense of time or space and experience an overwhelming sense of oneness

Dr Charles Tart, the author and American parapsychologist, who has been investigating normal and altered states of consciousness for more than 40 years, referred to this state as ‘cosmic consciousness’ coined by the Canadian psychiatrist Robert Maurice Bucke in 1961.

The people involved invariably feel a sense of unity with all things as a ‘seamless whole’. They also have a sense of knowingness, says Tart, quoting James: ‘A direct insight into the nature of reality that is self validating,’ resulting in a sense of authority and certainty about them in the future.

Finally, there is a sense of the ineffable nature of the experience, say Tart. It is utterly different from any other state of consciousness they’ve experienced, and can’t be described in words—even by simile or metaphor.

Tart quotes Bucke’s own mystical experience as feeling ‘that the universe is so built and ordered that without any peradventure, all things work together for the good of each and all, that the foundation principle of the world is what we call love and that the happiness of everyone is in the long run absolutely certain.’ There is often a sense of ‘God, but more as the ‘Absolute’ than the anthropomorphic god of organized religion.

This sounds exactly like the reports of our participants. However, unlike a religious or indigenous experience, there is no fasting, no self-denial, deprivation, no sweat lodge, no placing your head between your knees, no speaking in tongues, no icons, no ‘great effort of the mind,’ as St Augustine had described, no Ayahuasca.

The only thing that’s needed, the only thing that’s necessary, is a group devoted to the idea of sending out a prayer in unison..

Thinking with one voice appears to be a short cut to the miraculous. It creates what can only be described an ecstasy of unity –a feeling repeatedly described as ‘coming home.’

It’s only natural – like in oranges

The scene would not look out of place in Breaking Bad. Special Forces in camouflage gear and night vision masks stealthily break into a house and hold up its terrified owner, still in his dressing gown, shining a light in his face as they catch him holding a bottle of what appears to be illegal contraband.

The scene would not look out of place in Breaking Bad. Special Forces in camouflage gear and night vision masks stealthily break into a house and hold up its terrified owner, still in his dressing gown, shining a light in his face as they catch him holding a bottle of what appears to be illegal contraband.

Guys, GUYS,’ says the terrified owner, who turns out to be Mel Gibson. ‘It’s only vitamins.” The SWAT team are unimpressed. Gibson is still trying to get them to see sense as they arrest him and clamp on the cuffs: ‘“Vitamin C, you know, like in oranges?”

Gibson had donated his time for this 1992 video, which was meant to be a call to action for citizens concerned about US federal legislation, which the film said is ‘actually considering classifying most vitamins and other supplements as drugs. The FDA has already conducted raids on doctors’ offices and health food stores. Could raids on individuals be next?”

The American public certainly thought so, because the advert, and other aspects of a well organized grassroots movement, created massive support for what ultimately became the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994, or DSHEA, the law that today protects American access to dietary supplements as well as information about these products.

Despite the passage of that bill, the desire of the US and the UK regulatory authorities to gain control of the vast natural medicine market has never quite disappeared. Nor has the influence of the pharmaceutical industry. 

The MHRA is increasingly populated with ex-drug industry old boys, and, like the FDA, indeed is now funded by Big Pharma. As US Health-freedom advocate Elissa Meininger, once said, “Among the events that led up to the passage of DSHEA was the publication of the FDA’s Task Force Report on Dietary Supplements. In it, there was a statement that I saw as a smoking gun. It stated that the presence of dietary supplements on the market represented a ‘disincentive’ (the FDA’s word) for patented drug research.”

As WDDTY recently discovered, the flak jackets were out in force recently, when investigators from the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) staged an unannounced raid on the new laboratory premises of Immuno Biotech in Cambridgeshire, confiscating 10,000 vials of the naturally occurring glycoprotein called ‘GcMAF’ and closing down the facility before it had in fact ever opened (see News Focus, page xx).

GcMAF, WDDTY readers may remember, is one of the more promising new treatments for cancer. In our November 2014 issue we featured four cancer patients and one patient with autism whose conditions were entirely turned around with this natural ‘supermolecule’. Shutting down manufacture of this product on the most spurious of reasons, when very little other treatment for cancer or autism is actually working, is nothing less than a violation of human rights.

The climate seemed likely to change with advertising magnate Lord Saatchi’s Medical Innovation Bill, which would have allowed doctors to try experimental cancer treatments without running the risk of being sued. It had been promoted by Lord Saatchi after his wife Josephine Hart died from ovarian cancer. It had passed the House of Lords, after several amendments were introduced at the Government’s behest, and just had to make it through the Commons before Parliament dissolved in March in the run up to the election. Thousands of patients supported this bill, and it was also backed by the Conservative party.

Shockingly, instead of allowing for debate or improvement of the law, the Liberal Democrats broke rank with their Tory coalition and simply vetoed it out of hand, claiming they had listened to patient groups, professional journals, and professional bodies – most of them in some way reliant on the drugs industry.

Several weeks ago, we attended a meeting attended by many heads of natural medicine organizations held in Parliament announcing the results of two rigorous meta-analyses of non-contact healing, carried out by the University of Northampton. The studies showed strong evidence that healing of every regard works on animals, plants and human beings (see page xx), in fact, better than many drugs. When we discussed how to get this information out there, the consensus was that we shouldn’t waste time trying to convince sceptics or professional bodies; we needed to tell our MPs.

The only way to get natural medicine accepted and enshrined in law is to create a DSHEA-style grassroots movement to make it a political issue. Those at the meeting recommended that we tell our readers to visit their MPs’ surgeries and demand protection for natural medicine and innovations like GcMAF. Discussions are underway about creating such a movement. The conservative government (and no doubt every member of government) regards the drug industry as a backbone of British industry. But the one thing any politician wants, even more than a thriving economy, is to keep his job.

Make a point of making a nuisance of yourself at your MP’s surgery. This time, in the wake of the Scottish referendum and UKIP, believe me, they’re listening.

What do you do with the most promising cancer treatment to date?

Question: what do you think the UK government would do when faced with a naturally occurring human protein that well could be a successful breakthrough treatment for cancer and save them billions of pounds on largely useless treatments like chemotherapy?

Answer: If you said ‘ban it, as unfit for humans’ you are correct, for that’s exactly what the British government has done with GcMAF, the ‘supermolecule’ being used to treat cancer and many other life-threatening diseases.

Question: what do you think the UK government would do when faced with a naturally occurring human protein that well could be a successful breakthrough treatment for cancer and save them billions of pounds on largely useless treatments like chemotherapy?

Answer: If you said ‘ban it, as unfit for humans’ you are correct, for that’s exactly what the British government has done with GcMAF, the ‘supermolecule’ being used to treat cancer and many other life-threatening diseases.

On 4 February, the UK’s Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) staged a raid on the manufacturing plant of Immuno Biotech, in Milton, Cambridgeshire and made off with 10,000 vials of the stuff, claiming the manufacturing process had been ‘contaminated.’

ImmunoBiotech has its offices in Guernsey, and after pressure from the MHRA, Guernsey has now banned importation or exportation of GcMAF, leaving many patients with cancer and other illnesses stranded without recourse to a treatment they say was saving their lives.

GcMAF is the discovery of an Italian molecular biologist named Marco Ruggiero, who worked at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), in Bethesda, Maryland.

Ruggiero was researching signal transduction, or how cancer cells stealthily sabotage signals coming from elsewhere in the body, when he and his colleagues began to recognize the vital role of an unlikely protein, which was ultimately christened ‘Gc-protein-derived macrophage activating factor’, or ‘GcMAF’(pronounced ‘Gee-cee-maf’) for short.

It’s been known for a century that macrophages are the body’s primary ‘foot soldiers’ against pathogens like bacteria and viruses, and also cancer. Although cancer cells are being produced in our bodies every day, often as a result of exposure to environmental toxins, ‘phages’ carry out search-and-destroy missions, sweeping through the body and engulfing (or ‘phagocytizing’, in science speak) cancerous mutations, cells infected by pathogens and the corpses of dead cells.

Ruggiero began studying the effects of using GcMAF against breast cancer cell lines in the laboratory. He was thunderstruck to discover that GcMAF not only stopped the cancer from spreading, but also caused cancerous cells to transform into healthy cells.

As part of its ‘clean-up’ act on breast cancer, it nullified the potentially carcinogenic effects of heavy metals in cells and stimulated the body’s own natural detoxification system. It also appeared to increase energy production in mitochondria and improve the metabolic activity and connectivity of neurons in the brain.

When combined with certain probiotics and the fatty acids in cow’s milk, the molecules could also completely reboot a damaged human ‘microbiome’, the good-guy microorganisms inhabiting the gut.

Besides cancer, GcMAF is being used against a vast number of illnesses; parents of children with autism given GcMAF are claiming extraordinary effects.

I interviewed four patients, one mother of a child with autism, and three cancer patients (two of whom had been end-stage patients) whose illnesses had been completely turned around with GcMAF.

Behind the ban, of course, is the heavy hand of Big Business and the pharmaceutical industry. Pro-Big Pharma interests intensely lobbied Guernsey’s medicines’ regulator before the raid. Last July, Natwest ImmunoBiotech’s account because, as Commerce Minister Kevin Stewart said, GcMF was ‘unproven and unlicensed’.

Despite the fact that ImmunoBiotech CEO David Noakes has not sold the product, but has given it away to 100 patients, they can no long even import GcMAF from anywhere, even though, as Ed Freestone, Guernsey’s chief pharmacist admits, ‘There is no current information suggesting the product has caused direct harm to anyone’s health.’ This is also despite the fact that Ruggiero and numerous colleagues around the world have published many scientific papers in reputable medical journals about GcMAF.

Patricia Bougourd, 71, who has asbestosis, claims her symptoms improved dramatically through use of the product. She now has just one day’s supply left.

The residents of Guernsey are not taking this lying down. They have taken out an ad in the local Guernsey paper on behalf of the 100 Guernsey patients pleading that they be allowed to continue to take this supplement. On February 7, the patients met at the St Pierre Park Hotel to figure out the next steps, and their plan is a legal challenge. Robin Bougourd, 68, for one is exploring a human rights claim to overturn the import ban.

Lord Saatchi’s Medical Innovations Bill now before Parliament is designed to give doctors more freedom to use innovative cancer treatments, and there is a good likelihood it will pass.

It is time to put innovative cancer treatment on the political agenda throughout the West and to let the politicians know we are no longer willing to allow business interests to continue to impede any possibility of finding a cure for cancer. Like the Guernsey patients, someday your life may depend on it.

 

What you do with the most promising cancer treatment to date?

Question: what do you think the UK government would do when faced with a naturally occurring human protein that well could be a successful breakthrough treatment for cancer and save them billions of pounds on largely useless treatments like chemotherapy?

Answer: If you said ‘ban it, as unfit for humans’ you are correct, for that’s exactly what the British government has done with GcMAF, the ‘supermolecule’ being used to treat cancer and many other life-threatening diseases.

Question: what do you think the UK government would do when faced with a naturally occurring human protein that well could be a successful breakthrough treatment for cancer and save them billions of pounds on largely useless treatments like chemotherapy?

Answer: If you said ‘ban it, as unfit for humans’ you are correct, for that’s exactly what the British government has done with GcMAF, the ‘supermolecule’ being used to treat cancer and many other life-threatening diseases.

On 4 February, the UK’s Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) staged a raid on the manufacturing plant of Immuno Biotech, in Milton, Cambridgeshire and made off with 10,000 vials of the stuff, claiming the manufacturing process had been ‘contaminated.’

ImmunoBiotech has its offices in Guernsey, and after pressure from the MHRA, Guernsey has now banned importation or exportation of GcMAF, leaving many patients with cancer and other illnesses stranded without recourse to a treatment they say was saving their lives.

GcMAF is the discovery of an Italian molecular biologist named Marco Ruggiero, who worked at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), in Bethesda, Maryland.

Ruggiero was researching signal transduction, or how cancer cells stealthily sabotage signals coming from elsewhere in the body, when he and his colleagues began to recognize the vital role of an unlikely protein, which was ultimately christened ‘Gc-protein-derived macrophage activating factor’, or ‘GcMAF’(pronounced ‘Gee-cee-maf’) for short.

It’s been known for a century that macrophages are the body’s primary ‘foot soldiers’ against pathogens like bacteria and viruses, and also cancer. Although cancer cells are being produced in our bodies every day, often as a result of exposure to environmental toxins, ‘phages’ carry out search-and-destroy missions, sweeping through the body and engulfing (or ‘phagocytizing’, in science speak) cancerous mutations, cells infected by pathogens and the corpses of dead cells.

Ruggiero began studying the effects of using GcMAF against breast cancer cell lines in the laboratory. He was thunderstruck to discover that GcMAF not only stopped the cancer from spreading, but also caused cancerous cells to transform into healthy cells.

As part of its ‘clean-up’ act on breast cancer, it nullified the potentially carcinogenic effects of heavy metals in cells and stimulated the body’s own natural detoxification system. It also appeared to increase energy production in mitochondria and improve the metabolic activity and connectivity of neurons in the brain.

When combined with certain probiotics and the fatty acids in cow’s milk, the molecules could also completely reboot a damaged human ‘microbiome’, the good-guy microorganisms inhabiting the gut.

Besides cancer, GcMAF is being used against a vast number of illnesses; parents of children with autism given GcMAF are claiming extraordinary effects.

I interviewed four patients, one mother of a child with autism, and three cancer patients (two of whom had been end-stage patients) whose illnesses had been completely turned around with GcMAF.

Behind the ban, of course, is the heavy hand of Big Business and the pharmaceutical industry. Pro-Big Pharma interests intensely lobbied Guernsey’s medicines’ regulator before the raid. Last July, Natwest ImmunoBiotech’s account because, as Commerce Minister Kevin Stewart said, GcMF was ‘unproven and unlicensed’.

Despite the fact that ImmunoBiotech CEO David Noakes has not sold the product, but has given it away to 100 patients, they can no long even import GcMAF from anywhere, even though, as Ed Freestone, Guernsey’s chief pharmacist admits, ‘There is no current information suggesting the product has caused direct harm to anyone’s health.’ This is also despite the fact that Ruggiero and numerous colleagues around the world have published many scientific papers in reputable medical journals about GcMAF.

Patricia Bougourd, 71, who has asbestosis, claims her symptoms improved dramatically through use of the product. She now has just one day’s supply left.

The residents of Guernsey are not taking this lying down. They have taken out an ad in the local Guernsey paper on behalf of the 100 Guernsey patients pleading that they be allowed to continue to take this supplement. On February 7, the patients met at the St Pierre Park Hotel to figure out the next steps, and their plan is a legal challenge. Robin Bougourd, 68, for one is exploring a human rights claim to overturn the import ban.

Lord Saatchi’s Medical Innovations Bill now before Parliament is designed to give doctors more freedom to use innovative cancer treatments, and there is a good likelihood it will pass.

It is time to put innovative cancer treatment on the political agenda throughout the West and to let the politicians know we are no longer willing to allow business interests to continue to impede any possibility of finding a cure for cancer. Like the Guernsey patients, someday your life may depend on it.

 

Intention Masterclass 15 session schedule

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First Session: 11th of April 2015- The leaky bucket: 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 6.00pm GMT - 1 hours 30 minutes

This session will ground you in the theory and practice of Lynne’s work in the new science of spirituality. Through powerful experiential learning, you will discover that you are not anindividual whose thoughts are locked inside your head, but a ‘leaky bucket’ whose thoughts are affecting and being affected by everyone around you at every moment

Through a mix of learning and exercises, you will discover that:

4 We are connecting with the thoughts and emotions of everyone around us — including strangers — at every moment
4 You are a walking mood conductor, determining the emotions and even the decision-making of everyone around you
4 We are mental and emotional copycats, drawn to automatic connection with each other, which manifests in a constant impulse to synchronize
4 We constantly carry the thoughts of others inside us — as though we were doing their thinking, too.
4 When we send intentions to others, their brainwaves, breathing and physiological functions begin to mimic our own.
4 You flourish best only when you move beyond speaking, seeing and relating and intending just for yourself

This week's practice and homework: By working in pairs with special exercises you will experience firsthand what it is that you are sending and receiving at every moment and how your thoughts – and those of everyone around you – are being continuously broadcast. And by participating in a special exercise attempting to pick up information that has been ‘hidden’ in water, you’ll discover how psychic you actually are — and how much psychic information and the intentions of others you are picking up at every moment. In your homework, you’ll learn how to identify the thoughts that are sabotaging your best intentions.

 


 

Second Session: 18th of April 2015- The Advanced Tools of Intention Mastery: 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 6.00pm GMT - 1 hours 30 minutes

This session includes advanced theory and practice to help you master the world’s only toolkit for using and receiving intention based on a unique blend of science and ancient wisdom. Lynne has synthesized and distilled the practices of many masters of intention – Qigong masters, master healers, native practice, elite athletes and autistic savants. Understanding and practicing these universal laws of intention and learning how to put them to work for you will enable you to become a master influencer.

You will learn how to:

4 Adopt certain ‘secret principles' that allow advanced meditators, monks, world-class athletes and others to manifest their intention
4 Use scientifically tested approaches to focus your intention with laser-like effectiveness
4 Practice mental rehearsal, just as professional athletes do, to vastly increase the likelihood of your intention manifesting itself
4 Identify what it is you really want and send very specific instructions about these dreams to the world
4 Work with the natural energies around you to increase the effectiveness of your practice
4 Clarify your own intentions so that your thoughts continuously beam out a coherent message to the universe
4 Send your intention from the heart, not the head
4 Let go and trust the process.

Practice and homework: You will practice making use of these tools during the class, then carry out homework assignments to hone your use of them throughout the week.

 


 

Third Session: 26th of April 2015- Brain-training: strengthening the connections: 9:00am PT / 12:00pm ET / 5.00PM GMT  - 1 hours 30 minutes

Besides the thoughts you send out to the world at every moment, you're also part of a ‘psychic internet,’ constantly picking up the hidden thoughts and intentions of others. This session will help you develop this receiving mechanism and your sixth sense in your dealings with other people so you can use this knowledge to improve your relationships.

Carrying out tasks that engage other parts of the brain besides those involved in verbal ability enables you to notice more about the connections between things. This session plus the practices and homework will help to train you to be sensitized to the intentional undercurrents of relationships and increase your own capacity for intuition. You will learn to cultivate your ability to tune into your sensory experience of the present moment and develop areas of awareness that lie beyond language.

In this session you will learn

4 Techniques that 'turn off' the overly analytical neocortex and bolster our own innate ability to consciously become aware of this raw data information flow, paying greater attention to detail and subtle connection.
4 Simple practices and meditative techniques that condition your brain to notice more, without judgment
4 Methods that help you see like a native, up close and in greater detail – and to observe hidden connections so that it is viewed as unity of interlocking parts.
4 Tuning-in: how to listen to gut hunches, no matter how irrational.
4 'Low-road' vs 'high road' perception —cultivating the art of extrasensory noticing

Practices and homework: This session will include training and homework in brain-training: noticing more detail, studying your own thinking processes, learning to see the unseen, strengthening your gut hunches, maintaining heightened perception and learning to see the whole.

 


 

Fourth Session: 2nd of May 2015- Connecting better – with intention: 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 6.00pm GMT - 1 hours 30 minutes

This session will explore techniques of intention that allow you to take steps toward making deep connections with anyone, even those you do not get along with, and to use int
ention during conflict in creative ways in order to produce greater shared understanding and possibility. You'll discover the art of limbic resonance — how to tune into another's inner emotional state to create a situation where you are completely in synch, momentarily melding into a single organism.

In this session you will learn how to:

4 Create immediate brain-wave entrainment between you and others, even perfect strangers
4 Listen and intend with your heart, mind, and soul to make every encounter a meaningful connection that supports both of you
4 Use powerful tools for relating that allow you to make deep connections with anyone
4 Put in place communication skills via intention to engage differences in creative ways in order to produce greater shared understanding, connection and possibility
4 Intentionally change the space between you, even the energy, during differences.

Practice and homework: This session will train you in simple techniques to create immediate brain-wave entrainment between you and others — even perfect strangers, a powerful daily practice to stoke your own altruistic and loving tendencies, and the power of 'we' affirmations to boost your own performance. You will learn to become conscious of the fact that your thoughts, emotions and attitude to life are highly contagious, with a profound effect on the people around you and discover some tools to become a positive force for good.

 


 

Fifth Session: 9th of May 2015- Overcoming self-sabotage and negative intention: 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 6.00pm GMT- 1 hours 30 minutes

All of us are aware of people who psychically drain us, and the power of emotional contagion, particularly by negative people. The science shows that we are all walking mood conductors, and both kinds of emotion — positive and negative — are highly contagious, but that positive emotions stimulate a group to be cooperative and make more positive choices in decision making, while the reverse held true with negative emotion.

Although both healers and psychics have devised many techniques to create psychic shields to to protect us from negative intention, in Lynne's view these barriers have the unfortunate side effect of often blocking our own universal flow. She advocates other, simpler and more effective ways to eliminate negative intention — especially your own.

In this session you will learn:

4 To become conscious of your own attempts to sabotage your own highest aspirations
4 To identify how your own negative thought stream affects all areas of your life and how to retrain it to be positive
4 Why your intentions don’t work, despite your best ‘intentions’
4 Simple techniques to avoid being drawn in or affected by negative intention
4 Life-transforming methods of transforming a negative intention of someone else's into a positive force for good
4 The best 'shield you have defend yourself against negativity in your life without blocking the connection.

Practice and homework: You will learn ways to strengthen your own power and intention even in highly negative situations and to identify when you are inadvertently sending out negative intention. Homework will include practicing these techniques in real-life situations during the week.

 


 

Sixth Session: 17th of May- Supersizing Intention: 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 6.00pm GMT - 1 hours 30 minutes

One of the least understood aspects of intention is that it amplifies in small groups. In this session we will now be ready to apply the principles of intention to groups at your work, your home and your community to transform the atmosphere in your neighborhoods, offices or communities from "me against them" to "all of us pulling together."

This section will train you to use group healing to create closer groups and 'supersize' the healing process. We'll also explore how to use intention to revitalize any social situation — in your office or neighborhood — to create a close-knit and cooperative community.

You will learn:

4 The power of group healing and how healing others in group setting actually heals the healers too
4 How to use the power of the group resonance to amplify your own intentional goals
4 How to create collective brain-wave resonance — at the office, at home and in your neighborhood — to create greater cooperation
4 The five simple steps you can take to use intention make your neighborhood or office and closer and more effective
4 Intention tools that transform the atmosphere in your office from 'me against them' to 'all of us pulling together'

Practice and homework: The class will break into groups and practice healing intention for each other, using the power of group resonance in a mock setting to achieve goals. You will also be set intentions for your home or work and will report on periodic progress to the group.

 


 

During these six 90-minute sessions with Lynne you will learn to: 

4 Clarify your own intentions so that your thoughts continuously beam out a coherent message to the universe
4 Use intention as a lightening rod — to attract positive people and situations to you
4 Learn the art of pure focus by turning off the cognitive mind and receiving raw data beyond your five senses
4 Use your thoughts as a powerful relationship-builder, even with people you don’t get along with
4 Tap into the powerful healing force of intention to heal your neighborhood, community or workplace
4 Avoid self-sabotage by maintaining your clear focus on positive outcome
4 Learn powerful methods of transforming the negative intentions of others so that everyone benefits
4 Create collective resonance so that the brain waves of everyone in your business or community are working in synch like a choir perfectly in tune in order to magnify the effect.
4 Use the power of small groups to supercharge your intention setting, and make the extraordinary discovery that you really are not alone

 

conections

Testimonials

Praise from previous Intention Masterclass workshop participants 

"This was a wonderful experience, being in Lynne McTaggart’s workshop. It was much more powerful than I could have imagined, and the ideas were so great and the connection and the way that she’s put this together into a social network to magnify the power of this is just brilliant. It captures the ideas of lots of people and puts them together in a working formula in a way that we can actually create something effective.

"I recommend this workshop to anyone who wants to make a difference in the world. I believe that Lynne is one of our visionaries and I am incredibly grateful."

"I just took Lynne McTaggart’s workshop after reading her books. I think they are really important. On the one hand they draw from a really hard body of science, and on the other hand they go into an area of transformational space in ways we can’t define. At the same time there is a practicality and a humanism that we can really relate to. And the fact that she combines those three areas makes her an important change agent at this time for our world.""I saw the power of group intention. It really works." – T.P., Massachusetts.

“The workshop was a tremendous experience. The work is incredibly important, and I intend to use this information to help me and my patients. The information is at the core of energy work and energy healing." – L.B., Chicago

"The Bond is real. It’s amazing. Come be part of this. Lynne McTaggart’s the Best.""(Lynne’ workshop) made me more attentive to the messages I send out and receive every minute of every day, unconsciously and often negatively. The workshop reminded me to be attentive to everything around me." – A.C., Illinois

"Lynne’s clarity, her precision, her love, her dedication to the Bond and to humanity is delightful, heartwarming and true to why we’re all human beings. ""It was amazing to experience how powerful group intention is."J.D., Chicago

"I love Lynne and all her insights and experiments." - P.B, New Mexico

"I have been meditating for about 10 years now, the last 4 with nightly dedication. I have seen my ability to reach out to someone grow exponentially, with the uncanny effectiveness of concentrating upon a person and asking for them to contact me and then allowing it to take place. It is beautiful, the interconnectedness of it all."  Matt Williamson

"After reading “The Field” I started working with my horses healing energy. I am therapeutic riding instructor, but I found that the horses have a huge quantum healing energy. I started to give workshops. The wild horse energy! Definitely got excellent ideas from your book."  Eti Jacoby

"Let's spread the good news! I was struggling in so many ways with health, emotional, spiritual and financial issues before reading Power of Intention and learning about the amazing movement in faith and affirmative prayer. Once I began to practice intention, so many things changed for the better!"  Mark Vanderkam

"Lynne,

I just had an experience yesterday...

My friend is caught up in a personal lesson which landed her on administrative leave at work. As I was listening to her agony on how to figure out this lesson, a message came through me. What came out of my mouth was, "Your father is here with you." Now, Her father passed when she was a little girl. I continued, "Go and meditate and pray, then journal afterwards and his instruction will come through you." Her father had had the same career as she has today and we realized after this message that she needed to sharpen some of her skills. She laughed at the message because the night before she had prayed and asked for her father's guidance. Needless to say, she was touched deeply.

I don't know why in that moment things were so clear. Maybe because I was completely focused on my friend, just listening without distractions? I am finding that my intuitive abilities are only getting stronger, concentration is getting better and my health is fantastic! I am writing a business plan for a new business and I guess I should just shoot for the stars as everything is in alignment.

Your intention class was a blast!" 

Jane Guyette

 conections

Why we are losing the War on Cancer

Susan Sontag memorably coined the term ‘Illness is metaphor,’ which always had a ring of truth to me. We get the diseases that are a metaphoric representation of some struggle in our lives. But it’s also true that there is such a thing as ‘treatment is metaphor,’ and nowhere more so than with the treatment of cancer.

Susan Sontag memorably coined the term ‘Illness is metaphor,’ which always had a ring of truth to me. We get the diseases that are a metaphoric representation of some struggle in our lives. But it’s also true that there is such a thing as ‘treatment is metaphor,’ and nowhere more so than with the treatment of cancer.

The reason we’re losing the War on Cancer (and we are indeed losing it, despite the bluster of governments, the media and the American Cancer Society) has to do with the metaphors we use to describe both the disease and the cure.

Recently a batch of researchers at the University of Michigan discovered that different metaphors change the way in which people view the disease and choose to treat it.

Since 1971, when Richard Nixon famously declared ‘War on Cancer’ in 1971 our current metaphor for cancer - a war to be fought, an impossible enemy to vanquish – has skewed the way we see the disease and how we choose to treat it.

The ‘war’ and battle imagery sets in the public and medical mind the notion that this is an impossibly wily enemy. Full-on attacks by alien invaders require desperate measures – the most lethal chemical combo that medicine has to offer – which is largely why doctors have a difficult time believing that something gentle and simple like changing your diet or taking a a herb or two could overcome an enemy this ferocious.

This week, I edited two stories we’ll be running in the next issue of What Doctors Don’t Tell You, which address the fallacy of this metaphor and why it has fuelled a (in the US) $100 billion failure known as Cancer Inc.

Several years ago, the great and the good among oncologists and cancer researcher met behind closed doors in Switzerland to answer the hard problem of how we were doing in this particular battle.

Their concensus was published in a 5000 words report in the Lancet last year (Lancet, 2014; 383: 558–63). Are we winning, they asked. Answer, unqualified no.

‘Despite the introduction of hundreds of new anti-cancer drugs, including advanced therapies (so-called magic bullets) aimed at particular weapons in the enemy’s armamentarium, the consensus was that, for most forms of cancer, enduring disease-free responses are rare, and cures even rarer,’ they wrote.

You'd never know any of this if you talked to the average oncologist. Most would talk of the great strides made in chemotherapy, the new drugs, the new combinations of treatments. But the measure of how much this constitutes the treatment of desperation is in the language used – "rescue" therapies, "salvage" operations – and also the types of treatments being resorted to, such as last-ditch attempts to restore blood formation in patients who have undergone murderously high chemotherapy.

Cancer specialists who continue to believe that they are only just a protocol away from finding the cure often forget the patient in their zeal to blast out every last cancer cell. Not long ago one doctor returned from an autopsy with the proud announcement that his patient, who'd had widespread, disseminated cancer, had died "cancer free." What he neglected to admit was that the patient didn't die of cancer. It was the lung disease induced by chemotherapy that killed him.

And that’s the problem. New evidence has emerged (and we’ll be reporting on all the chapter and verse) that the weapons we’re using, like chemo and radiotherapy, are weapons of mass destruction, breeding cancer stem cells, and causing it to spread.

It’s not necessary to view cancer as a battle to be won. Consider the case of Morty Lefkoe. Morty is 77 years old, and last year was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer. He was going to have it surgically removed, but a last scan the morning of his surgery revealed that the cancer had spread to his liver. It was too late to operate. The only recourse to him, said his doctor, was 18 courses of strong chemo, but his survival chances were just 6 per cent.

Morty rejected the entire war metaphor. For him, it was not a life and death battle. And by rejecting the metaphor, he got on with the business of changing his diet and lifestyle. He became cancer-free in 99 days.

The medical spin doctors have been particularly slick, instilling in the collective public mind a sense that we are winning the war.

It's time to admit their deception: in the main, the battle mentality, no matter how many drugs or how high the dosage, doesn't really work. And once we all admit that, we can go forward.

When a skeptic gets a message from the afterlife

Michael Shermer is the quintessential material guy – founder of Skeptic magazine, monthly columnist for Scientific American, poster boy for the entire skeptic movement, a true debunker of all things you can’t measure or explain with science. Shermer is downright condescending about believers in all things supernatural or paranormal, which is why what happened to him on his wedding day threatened to destabilize the entire edifice of his rock-solid rationalism.

Michael Shermer is the quintessential material guy – founder of Skeptic magazine, monthly columnist for Scientific American, poster boy for the entire skeptic movement, a true debunker of all things you can’t measure or explain with science. Shermer is downright condescending about believers in all things supernatural or paranormal, which is why what happened to him on his wedding day threatened to destabilize the entire edifice of his rock-solid rationalism.

As he described in an article entitled ‘Infrequencies’ published in Scientific American last September, his wife Jennifer Graf, whom he married last June, had emigrated to the US from Germany in June 2014. Many of the boxes sent to his California home were damaged in the transatlantic move, and a number of her most precious family heirlooms lost, among them binoculars which had belonged to her beloved grandfather Walter.

Jennifer had been raised solely by her mother, and Walter, who died when she was 16, had been like a father to her. One of his prized possessions, a 1978 Philips 070 transistor radio, was one of the few of her treasured mementos of his that had survived the journey.

Although the radio hadn’t worked for decades, Michael decided to try to fix it, but nothing – new batteries, checking the wires, even a good slam against a hard surface – worked. Jennifer and he gave up and consigned it to a bedroom desk drawer.

Grandfather’s music
Their wedding reception, held in his home on June 24, was a time for rejoicing but provoked a certain amount of sadness in Jennifer, since no guests at the small wedding included her German friends and family. Most of all, she told Michael, she wished her grandfather had been there to give her away.

Amid the festivities, she whispered to Michael that she wanted to say something to him in private, so they excused themselves to his bedroom.

They could hear music playing in the room, but as they have no stereo system there, they began searching around for the source of it. There were no laptops or iPhones in the vicinity. No neighbors had music playing. The sound seemed to be coming from the printer on the bedroom desk, and for a moment, they even wondered whether that bit of kit, which included a scanner and fax, also had a radio, before dismissing that idea as absurd.

‘At that moment Jennifer shot me a look I haven’t seen since the supernatural thriller The Exorcist startled audiences,’ Shermer wrote. ‘“That can’t be what I think it is, can it?” she said. She opened the desk drawer and pulled out her grandfather’s transistor radio, out of which a romantic love song wafted. We sat in stunned silence for minutes. “My grandfather is here with us,” Jennifer said tearfully. “I’m not alone.”’

After they’d regaled their guests with exactly what had happened, Shermer’s daughter Devin, who’d emerged from her bedroom just before the ceremony began, said, ‘I heard the music coming from your room just as you were about to start.’

Michael found that even odder, as they’d both had been getting ready just moments before that in the bedroom and the radio hadn’t been playing then.

That night, they felt asleep to the sounds of classical music from Walter’s radio. By morning it had stopped working and has remained silent ever since.

More than an anomaly
In his article, Shermer recounts his struggle with trying to square that experience with his own belief system. ‘What does this mean? Had it happened to someone else I might suggest a chance electrical anomaly and the law of large numbers as an explanation.’

Jennifer is equally skeptical about the paranormal. ‘Yet the eerie conjunction of these deeply evocative events gave her the distinct feeling that her grandfather was there and that the music was his gift of approval. I have to admit, it rocked me back on my heels and shook my skepticism to its core as well. I savored the experience more than the explanation.’

Michael ended his description of the event with a statement that has embarrassed the skeptic community, largely for its deliberate nod to the very unskeptical Aldous Huxley:

‘The emotional interpretations of such anomalous events grant them significance regardless of their causal account,’ he wrote. ‘And if we are to take seriously the scientific credo to keep an open mind and remain agnostic when the evidence is indecisive or the riddle unsolved, we should not shut the doors of perception when they may be opened to us to marvel in the mysterious.’

This reminds me of the experiences of philosopher Freddy Ayer and neurosurgeon Eben Alexander, author of Proof of Heaven, both a firm rationalists and atheists—until each had a near death experience.

Ayer admitted to Dr. Jeremy George, the young surgeon who’d attended him during his NDR, that he’d seen ‘the supreme being’ during his experience. ‘I’m afraid I’m going to have to revise all my books and opinions,’ he added. Alexander has used some of the proceeds of his international bestseller to set up an entire foundation devoted to studying the paranormal.

Both said there can’t be an afterlife, until they had a glimpse of it.

It can’t happen, as Shermer discovered, until it happened to him, and a stake got driven into the heart of all his certainty.

Lynne recommends: 

Women Entrepreneurs Over 50 Teleseminar

Lynne McTaggart is an international bestselling author, is also the successful co-owner of three businesses. She also wrote her first bestseller when she was 50. Find out how she has made a successful career of writing and her own enthusiasms. 

Tuesday 3 February at 3.00-4.00 pm
https://zu221.isrefer.com/go/over50/lynnem

When thinking makes you feel the burn

It’s music to the ears of any couch potato and anyone else fired with New Year resolution to get in shape. It’s also one of my favorite studies about the power of thought. 

A group of scientists at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Ohio wanted to find out basically if there was any difference between going to the gym and just thinking about going to the gym.

It’s music to the ears of any couch potato and anyone else fired with New Year resolution to get in shape. It’s also one of my favorite studies about the power of thought.

A group of scientists at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Ohio wanted to find out basically if there was any difference between going to the gym and just thinking about going to the gym.

In one of their many studies, they assembled 30 volunteers. Eight of them were trained to imagine exercising their little finger, another group of eight were to imagine exercising their elbow flexor muscle, a third group of six actually had to work out their little fingers, and a fourth group did nothing.

At the end of 12 weeks, the scientists discovered that the people who just thought about exercising their little fingers improved their finger strength by 35 per cent, while those who’d actually had to work out had improved their strength by 53 per cent. The elbow thinkers also showed a strong effect by improving their strength by 13.5 per cent.
The Cleveland researchers also found big changes in brain cortical potentials that are usually involved in control of muscle, as though the muscles had actually been exercised.

This research has now been amplified by a new research from Ohio University showing that anyone who has let their muscles go through inactivity or injury can think them back to shape and former strength. In fact, carrying out mental exercises can reduce muscle loss by up to 50 per cent.

In this study, 29 volunteers were asked to wear a rigid cast immobilizing the hand and wrist for four weeks. Half of them regularly carried out mental imagery, where they imagined they were intensely contracting their wrist for five seconds and then resting for five seconds.

At the end of four weeks, both groups had lost significant strength in their immobilized limbs, but the group using the power of thought lost half as much strength as the others (J Neurophysiology 2014; 112: 3219).

This latest study offers yet more evidence that the brain, a marvel of engineering in so many regards, is a little bit dumb when it comes to distinguishing between a thought and an action. Just the thought is enough to produce the neural instructions to change the body.

This is backed up by research with EEGs showing that the electrical activity produced by the brain are identical, whether we are thinking about doing something or actually doing it. Studies with weightlifters show that EEG patterns in the brain that would be activated to produce the actual motor skills are activated while the skill is simply being thought about.

However, these instructions are highly specific; thinking about strength training your elbow doesn’t make automatically make the rest of you strong; only your little finger. The power of thought enhances only the muscle groups being imagined.

The University of Ohio researchers have concluded that the power of the mind is a critical determinant of muscle strength and want to incorporate this kind of mental training in future recovery programs after injury.
For me, it’s important to sit back for a moment and think about the bigger picture here— the implications of these experiments and how much of the standard biological worldview it smashes to smithereens.

If just imagining we’re doing a workout can make our muscles strong, if thinking about doing makes the brain think we’re actually doing, that poses a number of basic questions about exactly what we’re dealing with here, what thought, indeed, the mind itself, actually are. Consider for a moment the sophisticated mechanism required for thoughts to be able to create such a response – far more than the mechanistic model we’re currently presented with.

And of course, this sort of research this leaves us with the biggest question of all: besides of the muscles of our hands and wrists, what else are we capable of influencing? And what out there are we unconsciously affecting at every moment?

 

What is free speech?

The Charlie Hebdo killings have focused the mind on free speech – freedom of expression, to call it by its formal legal name – and also revealed how little we know about what it actually means, as witnessed by the comments on last week’s blog.

The Charlie Hebdo killings have focused the mind on free speech – freedom of expression, to call it by its formal legal name – and also revealed how little we know about what it actually means, as witnessed by the comments on last week’s blog.

Free speech has been in common law in Britain where I live for many years but was actually only enshrined into ‘official’ law in Article 10 of the European Commission on Human Rights, after which is was then incorporated into British law in the Human Rights Act of 1998.

 

Press freedoms

The law is mainly meant to protect the right of the press, which includes the broadcast, the spoken word, other written and digital media, as well as the rights of political opponents to criticize the political and corporate Establishment.

 

Free speech is supposed to enable us to avoid the tyranny of government or institutions by giving us the right to air our views without fear of reprisal. The organization Liberty, devoted to protecting human rights in the UK, quotes the late US President Theodore Roosevelt on this point: ‘Free speech, exercised both individually and through a free press, is a necessity in any country where people are themselves free.’

 

As someone with a background in investigative reporting, my job, as I see it, is essentially holding the Establishment’s tail to the fire. Consequently, what I write about is controversial.

 

I critique a medical system largely sponsored by highly profitable private industry that pays off many governments and that increasingly stands accused of an extraordinary abuse of power. I also write about cutting edge science that has not yet been accepted by the scientific establishment.

 

Small wonder that not everyone agrees with me.

 

Free speech does carry with it the right to disagree, even to voice views that offend someone who doesn’t agree with you. I, for instance, find some of what Charlie Hebdo did offensive and gratuitous. I’m not a big advocate of mocking individual religions, but the editors were completely within their right to make a statement about a religious institution.

 

Unfortunately, with the advent of the internet, that sacred freedom – to be free to critique a corrupt government or Establishment – has become confused, now that anyone with a bit of time on their hands can set up a blog or make a comment, secure in their own power and anonymity.

 

The once noble aim to give voice to dissenters has degenerated into a license to say whatever you feel like about anyone you feel like trashing.

 

Where’s the line?

People have wondered on these pages how far we are meant to go, when it comes to protecting free speech. Does that mean we need to tolerate abuse by trolls? If we delete them do we stop free speech?

 

The law is clear on this point. Article 10 qualifies this freedom by saying that the right of freedom of expression is qualified by such restrictions that are necessary ‘for the protection of the reputation and rights of others.’

 

That means you are not allowed to defame or injure other people’s reputations because you don’t like their hairdo or what they stand for. For instance, the right to free speech will protect ‘fair comment,’ but will not protect a person who tries to spread hateful lies against another.

 

That article is also backed up by libel law, which prevents people from saying things about other people that are untrue, with the burden of truth on the person allegedly committing the libel. The law also prohibits ‘hate speec
hes’ that incite violence.

 

As with all freedoms comes responsibility. What free speech doesn’t allow is for is license to say or do whatever you feel like. It does not give people the right to abuse each other, destroy their reputations, restrain their trade or incite others to act against them. In fact, restraint of trade is also illegal.

 

Being an advocate for free speech also doesn’t handcuff us into accepting anything anyone wants to throw at us. You are not obliged, for instance, to invite the people who seek to destroy you round for dinner. Or indeed to allow them a voice on your own community pages.

 

How we’re policing this blog

In this blog, we are happy to keep posts that offer a reasoned disagreement with the issue being discussed. However, we are deleting some of the known trolls who are part of a group that has in the past two years has:

 

  • incited others to destroy our reputation
  • taught others to interfere with our business’s weblinks and our search engine optimization
  • encouraged others to hide our magazines in stores
  • used innuendo, rather than fact, to undermine our reputation
  • reported blatant lies about our journal
  • staged phony letter writing campaigns in clear restraint of trade

 

We also police offensive language, comments that are completely off point or any other gratuitous attempts to undermine us. You all know who you are. Don’t bother coming back – we’ll always delete you. That’s not free speech. That’s just being a coward and a bully – and also having nothing better to do with yourself.

Je suis gagged

Over the last few days all of us in the West have been horrified by the spectacle of Islamic fanatics blowing away 10 of the staff of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, including its editor, Stephane Charbonnier and his police bodyguard. It shocks us precisely because we believe that one of our most fundamental freedoms, the right to free speech, is presently under threat by the most militant of political extremists, and that preserving it is a matter of fighting religious fundamentalists.

Over the last few days all of us in the West have been horrified by the spectacle of Islamic fanatics blowing away 10 of the staff of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, including its editor, Stephane Charbonnier and his police bodyguard. It shocks us precisely because we believe that one of our most fundamental freedoms, the right to free speech, is presently under threat by the most militant of political extremists, and that preserving it is a matter of fighting religious fundamentalists. 

In the UK, the BBC runs a weekly show called Question Time, set up in a different part of the country every week, where guests representing the great and the good from politics and the media sit round a table and answer questions posed by members of the public in the audience.

 

This week, David Dimbleby hosted a diverse panel to deal with public questions about the shootings and what our response should be.

 

Bottled press

During the broadcast, the panel made a number of high-minded statements about the importance of ‘standing shoulder to shoulder’ with France to safeguard freedom of the press and tut-tutted about newspaper editors around the world ‘bottling it’ and being frightened to publish the offending cartoons after Wednesdays shootings.

 

All were disturbed that the BBC had a policy in place disallowing any images of depiction of the Prophet Mohammed that might offend Muslims. Our ‘hard fought’ freedom of speech is also about the right to criticize and satirize and show disrespect for’ things, said Labour Party Shadow Health minister Liz Kendall said.

 

‘If I were able to orchestrate one reaction to yesterday I would want every single editor of every paper in Europe and the rest of the world to carry their cartoons,’ remarked. Conservative former Home Secretary David Davis.

 

Jimmy Wales was quick to point out that Wikipedia, that bastion of free speech, had, in fact, run one of Charlie Hebdo’s earlier cartoons.

 

Business as usual

The point is, when it comes to the free dispersal of information, Wednesday’s attack is only a more savage version of what is already taking place here in the UK and in America, only this time the terrorists are all those societal structures meant to safeguard our right to free speech.

 

Let’s examine a few inconvenient truths, which represent just those examples of press suppression I have personal experience of, mainly relating to freedom to publish scientific data that puts modern medicine in a less than favorable light:

 

  • In all of its literature to parents, the Department of Health does not publish one word of information about potential side effects or lack of efficacy of any vaccine, even though this material is freely available in other countries.

 

  • In the US, the Centres for Disease Control, the major government body charged with studying vaccines, has consistently buried unfavorable data about the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and its link to autism by massaging the data.

 

  • When a CDC scientist whistleblower blew the story about CDC burying this data – a scandal of Watergate proportions – recently, not one major paper in the UK and the US carried the story.

 

  • Although we supplied every major newspaper in the UK with reams of scientific evidence about the dangers of the cervical cancer vaccine in 2012 (material already published in the US press) not one newspaper was brave enough to publish it, for fear of ‘offending’ the medical establishment or ‘frightening’ patients from trusting their doctors.

 

  • Some years ago, I was invited to write a column for the Times. My first article was about the MMR and
    revealed secret documents I’d obtained from a whistleblower inside a CDC panel. The Times allowed the UK government to respond, but refused to allow me to right of reply. That was the moment I quit the column.

 

  • The Times, London’s paper of record, refused to allow What Doctors Don’t

Tell You, to correct their 1November 2013 article, even when it was filled with false information, and refused to publish any letters of support from our readers.

 

  • Wikipedia, which appears to have distain for alternative medicine, allows any troll to stampede the pages of people like me to paint them in an unfavorable light. Any attempts to correct clear factual errors are quickly changed back to the originals.

 

  • WH Smith, the so-called ‘champion’ of the small press, refuses to carry our magazine after a pharmaceutically supported organization orchestrated a phony staged campaign protesting it.

 

As broadcaster and columnist Julia Hartley-Brewer put it, ‘Freedom of speech and religion goes hand in hand with freedom to offend. We have the right to offend in this country. If we don’t stand up for that we will see our freedoms ebb away very quickly.’

 

But not, it seems, when it comes to an alternative view of health and medicine. In that case, Je suis Charlie.

Religion: the latest scientific exploration

Lately I’ve been thinking a good deal about how in modern times science and religion have exchanged places. This was initially prompted by an email from What Doctors Don’t  Tell You reader about an article in the new Scottish newspaper the National, reporting that  Lanarkshire Health Board has stopped referring patients to the Glasgow Integrative Care Centre where they practise homeopathy.
 
Lately I’ve been thinking a good deal about how in modern times science and religion have exchanged places. This was initially prompted by an email from What Doctors Don’t Tell You reader about an article in the new Scottish newspaper the National, reporting that Lanarkshire Health Board has stopped referring patients to the Glasgow Integrative Care Centre where they practise homeopathy.
 
 
The journo of the story dutifully quoted physicist Simon Singh, Mr Rent-a-Quote on these matters, whose point was that even if lots of people want homeopathy, as they do, “public demand did not necessarily equate to the best public service.” “If lots of people wanted voodoo on the NHS should we have voodoo?” he said. Of course, it is fairly easy to unpick all of his statements, but I’ll focus on just one: If lots of people wanted voodoo on the NHS should we have voodoo? 
 
The answer to that is, of course, yes. The National Health Service is a public health service, supported by my tax payments and those of everyone who pay taxes in Britain. As the financial backers of the NHS, we have a right to determine the health treatments it offers – and certainly more right to determine this as a body than Mr Singh, a physicist, with no training in medicine and an ideological aversion to alternative medicine.  But the real issue here isn’t really about whether homeopathy ‘works’ or ought to be offered on the NHS. 
 
The real problem with his statements is the suggestion that a small group of scientists can dictate what the rest of us believe and do with our health money over some belief that they have a corner on the truth. 
 
Do as I say
 
There’s no doubt that science has become increasingly more fundamentalist, dominated by a few fanatics who believe that the full scientific story has already been written and who, like the militant atheists, claim the right of primacy of their own belief system, an insistence that it is the light and the way – the only way. The late American literary critic Lionel Trilling once wrote, “Some paradox of our nature leads us, when once we have made our fellow men the objects of our enlightened interest, to go on to make them the objects of our pity, then of our wisdom, ultimately of our coercion.” The increasingly militant minority attempt to destroy any scientific experiment, any medical modality, even any world view anything outside of the accepted paradigm. Their form of scientific fundamentalism is no different from what I was told in catechism as a child: Only Catholics get to heaven. 
 
97% unsure
 
Inherent in this coercive behaviour is a stonewalling of any doubt – a rigorous denial of how little scientists really know. Orthodox science can lay claim to very little when by its own frank admission, it does not understand about 97 per cent of the universe, which is why scientists are forced to call it ‘dark matter.’ In fact, every time we congratulate ourselves for embarking on a discovery that will unveil another of Nature’s great mysteries (think of the Human Genome Project), life pulls another fast one on us and shows us just how complex it all is out there. Science has described the Big Bang in great detail, but it is now unfashionable to ask a more fundamental question: what organizing force was responsible for that miraculous event of split-perfect timing? 
 
Unlike atheism and this form of scientism, modern religion admits to – indeed, embraces – doubt. ‘Heaven lies all about us,’ Bryan Appleyard recently wrote, ‘and the struggle is to see it.’ In fact, almost everyone on earth lives in something beyond the material world, even if we don’t actually admit to it. Appleyard quotes the poet Michael Symmons Roberts as saying, “A true, thoroughgoing, secular materialism must be the hardest thing to believe.” Where the militant atheists have got it wrong is to define what we refer to as religion as a set of fixed beliefs. Most of us who admit to spirituality of any variety (and with the vast majority of us it is not the-man-with-a-beard-on-a-white-cloud version) live comfortably with uncertainty and invite an open exploration of the unknown. We live in that realm of open inquiry that used to be inhabited by science. 
 
In the eye of the beholder
 
When I was researching The Field, two German physicists independently remarked, in explaining many complex ideas of quantum physics: “Always, we return to Kant,” by which they were referring the 18th century philosopher Immanuel Kant.My husband Bryan elaborated on the importance of Kant’s incredible prescience in a recent blog, when he said that the perfect reply to any so-called ‘skeptic’ who claims the moral authority of one particular world view is simply this: one of the essential points of Kant’s master work The Critique of Pure Reason, is that the world is not as it is, but how it appears to us.
 
Essentially that means two things: the world is in the eye of the beholder and so there is no such thing as one final objective ‘truth.’ My world view is different from yours, or a dog’s, or indeed anyone’s, and all are equally valid.“Ultimately, it states that there is much, much more going than we can even imagine, let alone sense. For Kant, this provided the space for faith,” wrote Bryan. Kant recognized, and the pioneers of quantum physics went on to prove, that uncertainty is a fundamental aspect of the universe. We, all of us, live and must be content to live as an article of faith.
 
And for me, that is an open invitation to do two things: keep looking deeper and pray without ceasing.

The silenced majority

Last weekend I read an extraordinary article in the Sunday times about free speech which ran under the headline ‘Silenced: third of Britons feel they are denied free speech’

 Last weekend I read an extraordinary article in the Sunday times about free speech which ran under the headline ‘Silenced: third of Britons feel they are denied free speech’

The article said that a full third of people in Britain now believe they can’t speak freely on controversial subjects such as immigration and religion because of the fear they that may be criticized, lose their job or be prosecuted.

The study had been carried out by the New Culture Forum, a Westminster think tank, and the gist of it was a warning that Britain has developed a “culture of silence” where people feel they must censor themselves, particularly in the workplace.

The story also covered a YouGov poll showing that a third (36 per cent) of those polled believe they cannot speak freely on immigration. Some 31 per cent felt they couldn’t speak about religion – their own or anyone else’s – 27 per cent felt constrained to speak about any ethical issues and 20 per cent feel they cannot express their political views without censure.

So the silent majority is becoming the silenced majority.

However, the story went on to say that the public held free speech in higher regard than any  other freedom we enjoy in the West.

I don’t know much about New Culture Forum, and I suspect I wouldn’t agree with all of its values, but one thing I do agree with is the fact that this group is sick of being dictated to by the media about what can or cannot be thought or expressed.

In my view nowhere is this more evident than with information about science and medicine.

Here in the UK the BBC and most of the papers of record, such as The Times, have been taken over by a group of journalists supposedly devoted to science, but in fact dedicated to ‘scientism,’ the blind confirmation of prevailing belief. 

This mindset pooh-poohs any view or evidence that counters that world view, regardless of the evidence, and it particularly rails against anyone brave enough to profess to a spiritual belief. Worse, they refuse to allow even a discussion of dissent.

This is the mindset behind Sense About Science, behind militant atheism, behind the dictum from TED talks that ban anything with even a whiff of information about the paranormal or consciousness research.  It’s behind the trolling of Wikipedia and of course behind the attacks on What Doctors Don’t Tell You.

It’s the mindset behind anything that wishes to explore the new, and for all its extolling of science, it is the enemy of true scientific exploration.

However, there are signs that silent majority are beginning to finally speak up.  One of the first signs is a new American website called Skeptical About Skeptics.   http://www.skepticalaboutskeptics.org, which has outed all the skeptics who have held sway for so long.

Check it out and for once feel free to have your say.

To Cure Depression: take one group before bedtime

Something in me in constantly drawn to the idea of the group. When I wrote The Intention Experiment, I was less interested in the power of thought than the power of more than one set of thoughts.

Something in me in constantly drawn to the idea of the group. When I wrote The Intention Experiment, I was less interested in the power of thought than the power of more than one set of thoughts.

The subject of The Intention Experiment was essentially one large question: what happened when lots of people were thinking the same thought at the same time?  Did it supersize the effect?   

Since writing The Field, I’d been obsessed with the idea that the new story emerging from science completely changes everything about the human condition. We had to wake up to who we really are, in all our extended human potential,  and learn to live according to a radical new view of ourselves, as just a piece of a  larger whole.

To me, it suggested a new type of healing prayer, an intention that required the support of others. What I’d been kicking around was a big idea: creating community, which heals itself together and works together to heal the world. That needed, I’ve increasedly realized, a group.

And now besides the evidence of the hundreds of experiments I’ve run, large and small, there’s new evidence from Sweden that supports the power of the group to heal depression. 

The power of 10

In this study, carried out by researchers from Lund University, and run at 16 primary health care centres in Skäne, a county in southern Sweden, 215 patients aged between 20 and 64 suffering from depression, anxiety or the aftershock of severe stress were randomly placed into one of two groups.

In one patients were to learn group mindfulness treatment, with 10 patients to a group, while the other group would have standard treatment, largely individual cognitive behavioral therapy, each treatment lasting for eight weeks.  Patients in both groups were given detailed questionnaires to examine the severity of their depression and anxiety, and their symptoms were monitored over the eight weeks of the study period.

The mindfulness patients learned mindfulness via a training programme and were asked to keep a diary of their exercises. This technique teaches you to have non-judgmental awareness of the present moment, usually by coming into your five senses, and just ‘being’, without evaluating yourself, inside or out. You learn to direct your attention and learn to accept what is, and also learn how to deal with negative thoughts and how to accept yourself. And in this instance, you do so with the support of a group.

Mindfulness is thought to help with depression because you focus on the here and now, and stop rerunning the tapes of your past. CBT is a more active process of challenging negative thoughts and beliefs.

Other studies of mindfulness based treatment for depression showed that more  people treated with it stay free of depression than those treated with medication (,2008,;76:966-78).

In the Swedish study, the patients treated with mindfulness were given a program designed by mindfulness instructor Ola Schenström, who also modeled the program for two training instructors.

The group antidepressant effect

Both groups reported a decrease in symptoms, but at the end of the two months, when researchers studied the results, there was no difference between them.  Mindfulness meditation in a group worked just as well as undergoing intensive individual therapy (http://bjp.rcpsych.org/content/early/2014/11/11/bjp.bp.114.150243). 

‘Group mindfulness treatment should be considered as an alternative to individual psychotherapy, especially at primary health care centers that can’t offer everyone individual therapy,’ said Professor Jan Sundquist, the research team leader.

What’s extraordinary about this study is that CBT is considered one of the most effective cures for depression. But it’s not particularly surprising to me. 

Mindfulness may be considered the cure, but for me, the cure is the group itself. Numerous native cultures don’t perceive themselves as separate and consequently view healing as a communal act.  Their intention is concentrated, focused and most of all selfless. Healing yourself communally counters our biggest 21st century disease – the disease of separation.

When you do, your solitary voice transmutes into a thunderous symphony.

Putting giving back into Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year, the only one that celebrates the things in life that really matter: the power of family and connection, the sacred ritual of sharing plentiful food.

 Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year, the only one that celebrates the things in life that really matter: the power of family and connection, the sacred ritual of sharing plentiful food.

But in most cases, what is glaringly absent for anyone other than young children, who learn of the first harvest in America and the generosity of the native Americans, is what the holiday is actually supposed to celebrate:  the power of selfless giving.

 

In fact, giving is hardly part of our Western language anymore.

 

Not long ago, an American researcher from the University of California was conducting research on the Suya Indians of Mato Grosso, Brazil, in an attempt to determine how they use numbers.This group of Amazonian Indians is largely famous for their music; Anthony Seeger, a professor of Ethnomusicology at the University of California, Los Angeles, says that their singing is used to create community, establish relationships and social identity, and also to formulate ideas about time and space. Singing, to a Suya, is both hard and soft science.

 

When one minus one isn’t a minus

Many scientists who examine differences in number systems between cultures have concluded that many native cultures don’t have language to describe quantities of things; for instance, the Piraha people use the same word “hoi” to describe “about one” and “about two”; the only difference is a subtle alteration in inflection of pronunciation. 

 

The much-studied Munduruku in the Amazon have words for numbers only up to five. This has led many scientists to examine whether human beings have innate numerical skills or whether number sense is a part of cultural conditioning. 

 

On this occasion, the American researcher offered a numerical problem to a member of the Suya tribe: If you had ten fish and gave away three, how many would you have?

 

The Suya answered without hesitation. As anybody in the village could tell you, the answer was 13. 

 

In the Suya tradition, whenever you give something away to someone else, the recipient pays you back double.  So if he gave three fish to his brother, he said, his brother would have to give him back two times three fish, or six. 

 

So added to his ten original fish he would first have sixteen fish. But once he deducted the three fish he originally gave his brother, he would have a net increase of three, or thirteen.  So, 10-3 = 7 in Western mathematics transforms into 10 + (2×3) – 3 = 13 in Suya mathematics.

 

Giving is addition

The native was dismayed at the American version of the equation.  “Why is it that ‘giving’ is always seen as a ‘minus’ for white people?’ his fellow tribesman asked, entering the debate.  “I know that you want me to use the minus sign instead of the plus sign, but I don’t understand why.”

 

This entire episode surprised Alex Bellos, the author of Here’s Looking at Euclid, a study of cultural differences in mathematics.  He began his study with the belief that numbers are a universal language – the way in which we could, say, communicate with extra-terrestrials — only to find that our basic understanding of arithmetical relationships depends upon cultural context.

 

This story reveals something very profound not simply about mathematics but about how different cultures view relationships in general, particularly how we view ourselves in relation to other things. Our sense of mathematics very much depends upon how we define our world, and whether we view ourselves and all the things around us as individual entities separate from each other or inherently intertwined.

 

The bigger whole

Many non-Western societies — pre-literate cultures such as the Aborigines, the ancient Greeks and the Egyptians, the adherents of Eastern religions such as Buddhism, Zen, and Taoism, and a number of extant indigenous cultures  —  conceive of the universe as inseparable, connected by some universal energy life force.

 

This central bel
ief breeds an extraordinarily different way of seeing and interacting with the world.  We see the thing; they see the totality, the relationship between the things.

 

To an indigenous native, giving is an act so inherently rewarding that it must always be denoted with addition and not subtraction.  The most important aspect of any relationship is all about the plus sign - focusing on whatever is required to make the connection. 

More proof of heaven

Last month I read Eban Alexander’s Proof of Heaven.  If you haven’t read it yet, it’s the story of a neuroscientist who experienced a week-long near death experience while in a death’s door coma after he’d developed bacterial meningitis.  While his relatives watched his lifeless body, he was fully conscious, traveling through different dimensions, ultimately to an extraordinary paradise. 

Last month I read Eban Alexander’s Proof of Heaven.  If you haven’t read it yet, it’s the story of a neuroscientist who experienced a week-long near death experience while in a death’s door coma after he’d developed bacterial meningitis.  While his relatives watched his lifeless body, he was fully conscious, traveling through different dimensions, ultimately to an extraordinary paradise. 

It wasn’t his time yet.  He survived, and his experience turned every thought he had about death and the brain and consciousness on its head.  The only reasonable explanation is that consciousness never dies but after death, goes to another ‘place’.  The most remarkable aspect of Alexander’s story is that before his experience, he was firmly of the mind = brain and brain-is-responsible-for-consciousness camp. 

After his experience, he realized that this just cannot be true.  His experience could not have resulted from the ravings of a dying brain (the standard medical explanation of near death experiences) because his neocortex was filled with pus and completely non-functioning.  Nevertheless, he was hyperaware of every aspect of his other worldly journey.

And now new evidence backs up Alexander’s experience. The largest ever medical study into near-death and out-of-body experiences demonstrates, just as Alexander experienced, that some form of conscious awareness continues even when the brain has shut down completely. 

Scientists at the University of Southampton spent four years examining 2000 heart attack victims who’d attended some 15 hospitals in the UK, the US and Austria. 

Nearly 40 per cent of the survivors reported some kind of ‘awareness’ and out-of-body experience during the time they’d been considered clinically ‘dead’ and before their hearts were restarted. 

For instance one 57-year-old Southampton social worker could describe in great detail all the action of the nursing staff and the sounds of machines during the three minutes he’d been unconscious and, to all intents and purposes, ‘dead’.

Study leader Dr. Sam Parnia, a former research fellow at Southampton University, and presently at the State University of New York, acknowledged that the standard medical view is that ‘the brain can’t function when the heart has stopped beating,’ and ‘the brain typically shuts down within 20-30 seconds after the heart has stopped. ‘

Nevertheless, in this case, says Parnia, ‘conscious awareness appears to have continued to up to three minutes into the period when the heart wasn’t beating. The man described everything that had happened in the room, but importantly, he head two bleeps from a machine that makes a noise at three-minute intervals.  So we could time how long the experience lasted for. Everything that he said had happened to him had actually happened. ‘

As Parnia concluded, ‘Many people have assumed that these were hallucinations or illusions, but they do seem to correspond to actual events.’

Of the 300 survivors of cardiac arrest, 140 had experienced some form of consciousness and many described broadly similar experiences. Just as Alexander had recounted in his detailed description of his NDE, a number recounted being dragged through deep water (he had called it the ‘Worm’s- eye View of the World’), seeing some sort of bright light or shining sun, and experiencing a super-real heightening of their senses. Nevertheless, only a tiny minority had full awareness like an out-of-body experience, and a number had experiences that were fearful, even persecutory.

This work is being bolstered by the research of David Wilde, a psychologist at Nottingham Trent University, who is putting together information about out-of-body experiences, which remain a thorn in the side of materialist scientists attempting to explain away NDEs as the kick-back of a dying brain.

With this large sample size, he says, and some ‘very good evidence here that these experiences are actually happening after people have medically died’ at last the medical community is beginning to take seriously the idea that consciousness is the one constant that remains long after the body, and probably forever.

The Life of Bryan – and how he healed his past and learned to forgive

The first thing I noticed about Bryan was his laugh. I was a fellow editor in the shabby offices of a British publishing company in 1985 and, newly separated at the time from a three-year-old marriage, had very little to smile about.

 The first thing I noticed about Bryan was his laugh. I was a fellow editor in the shabby offices of a British publishing company in 1985 and, newly separated at the time from a three-year-old marriage, had very little to smile about.

 

We’d been in the middle of an otherwise uneventful corporate meeting of the company’s editorial and advertising staff when the proceedings were interrupted by an outburst from one corner of the room. An entire editorial team was convulsed in giggles, led by the editor, the loudest of the group.

 

This was no ordinary laugh. This deep baritone burst open the silence, seeped into every corner, and rained down on every person seated in the room. Indeed, as I discovered when I heard it again in subsequent weeks, Bryan’s laugh was fully capable of traversing walls.

 

Although it soon had everyone in the room laughing along – a particularly dour group ordinarily – these were not simply copycat gestures. They represented the shock of recognition that occurs when the listener is a rare witness to joy emerging straight from within soul.

 

An abused child

The resonance of that laugh was all the more astonishing to me after I got to know Bryan in the months that followed and learned something of his history. As a child Bryan had

been a victim of abuse – not physical abuse but mental cruelty of the most potentially debilitating kind. His father, George, an intelligent, if emotionally arrested man, had been severely disappointed in his own life and consequently vented most of his frustration with its shortcomings on his young son – usually in the form of a venomous sarcasm.

 

Bryan had been his father’s unwanted third child from a second marriage – and a constant reminder of his own failure to create a loving relationship, particularly with his first wife, who preferred to have her two children taken away from her rather than live with George for one more day.

 

George refused to acknowledge his son by name and never missed an opportunity to belittle, shout at, or in some way verbally abuse him. Although Bryan was extremely intelligent, his father placed him in a school for tough delinquents, where he essentially survived only by nimble verbal sleight of hand.

 

George wasn’t content to ignore his youngest son’s prodigious gifts but did his best to crush them, ignoring a letter from Bryan’s school recommending that he apply to Oxford University, so that he was made to leave school at 16.

 

Bryan’s mother Edie adored him, but as an orphan who’d never had any parental figures in her own life, and as George’s other target, she’d had no blueprint for how to become an encouraging parent.In a sense, Bryan had to grow up and launch his subsequent career as a successful journalist, publisher and entrepreneur in spite of his parents.

 

Often in such a desolate landscape, humour becomes a sanctuary, as does deep spiritual inquiry. Bryan became a spiritual seeker during his early teenage years, and it was no accident that when he put himself through university as an adult, he pursued a degree in philosophy.

 

Conversations with George

From my perspective, this backstory didn’t accord in any way with the happy, sensitive person in front of me and the exemplary father he became to our two daughters – except at certain moments. During the course of our joyful 30-year partnership I observed as Bryan’s past occasionally hovered over him like an unwelcome phantom.

 

In response to some stimulus – a slightly raised voice or the mildest of challenges – he’d angrily lash out. I was stunned by this outsize response until I realized what was going on.

 

He wasn’t having a conversation with me. He was still talking to George. He was, as he would now put it, ‘time-heavy,’ trying to put to rest something unresolved from his past. He was also seeking an answer to a kind of ‘what’s-it-all-about?’ depression that had quietly descended over him for more than a decade.

 

Over time, I observed this phantom making an appearance with less and les
s frequency. Bryan preferred mapping the journey to his own understanding and healing rather than taking the ride with a therapist, and like most creative people, he sought to universalize his experience so that ultimately he could help others as well as himself.

 

As he observed the process of shedding his own phantoms, he began to consider the possibility that the past exists as a separate self in all of us –and becomes, in most cases, the bully of the other selves.

 

The theory of the three selves

One day, when I returned from a trip, his theory of the Three Selves emerged, fully formed, as if pulled out of thin air, and Bryan then spent many months refining it before putting it together in his book, The Untrue Story of You. Although there are certain parallels with other disciplines, I’ve yet to find another model that answers so much about the complexity of the human experience with such profound simplicity.

 

Other theories that attempt to define consciousness fall short because they don’t encompass the intricacies of our lives and the full range of human potential. The majority of programs promising enlightenment fail precisely because they don’t take into account the subversive power of the past.

 

Besides examining the largely negative effect of the past self and how it becomes like a permanent unwanted guest, the Three Selves model provided a brilliant answer to so many of the big questions man has never had adequate answers for – from events that take place ‘outside of time’, such as remote viewing or near-death experiences, to human consciousness and its ‘life’ outside of the physical body.

 

As such, the theory jibed perfectly with my own work on The Field, The Bond and the power of consciousness.

 

In addition to laying out one of the most plausible theories I’ve ever read about what it means to be human, Bryan wanted to arm his readers with a powerful set of tools, a step-by-step to help shed the burdens of the past and become time-light – and so free, as Bryan puts it, ‘to fall back in love with your life’.

 

Bryan’s book resonates so deeply because it speaks with the authentic truth of personal experience. In the last years of George’s life, Bryan was able to forgive his father, while George came to love his son deeply, looking forward to his visits and even asking for him on his deathbed.  It was extraordinarily moving to be witness to that precious and rare thing: a full resolution of the past.

 

 Ultimately, Bryan’s book represents his journey, from the pain and darkness of unexamined adversity to understanding and recovered wholeness.

 

May you take to the road with him and learn to travel light: www.bryanhubbard.net

Wh smith: frankly, we do give a damn

I am thrilled to announce that we have won the fight to get What Doctors Don’t Tell You (WDDTY) back into Tesco. 

I am thrilled to announce that we have won the fight to get What Doctors Don’t Tell You (WDDTY) back into Tesco. We’re again being sold there as of this month. Our heartfelt thanks to all of you who protested against the ban. Your very vocal voices counted, and they were listened to. Please thank Tesco by returning to their store and doing your weekly shop there.

WHgag

But the fight goes on. WH Smith, the UK’s largest newsagent, has now banned our title, after receiving a few similarly orchestrated complaints from the pharma-sponsored trolls.

Recently we met with Smith’s magazine buyer, who informed us that the UK’s biggest newsagent chain isn’t concerned about issues like free speech or indeed real investigative news, of the variety researched by our magazine. He thinks ours is a quality publication and our team are impressive. He freely acknowledged the fact that the protests against us aren’t by real customers, but a stage-managed campaign by a Big Parma-backed group of miscreants.

He realizes all of this, but his brisk final decision echoed what Rhett Butler told Scarlett in Gone with the Wind: frankly, my dear, WH Smith doesn’t give a damn.

But we do, and we hope you believe in free speech, too.  If you do, please help get WDDTY back on the shelves at WH Smith.

Please write to the CEO Stephen Clarke and tell him how you feel about Britain’s largest newsagent banning a publication that stands for freedom of choice and truth in medicine. His email is: stephen.clarke@whsmith.co.uk

Tell them that although they may not give a damn about your right to have access to this information, you certainly do.

Three flew over the cuckoo's nest

 

Does the State reserve the right to have ultimate say over decisions about the medical treatment of children, if its views depart from those of the child’s parents?

 

Does the State reserve the right to have ultimate say over decisions about the medical treatment of children, if its views depart from those of the child’s parents?

This issue has been raised again with the handling of the King family, where Mr and Mrs King were temporarily imprisoned in Spain after leaving the UK because they disagreed with the treatment that a Southampton hospital insisted upon for their child Aysha’s brain cancer.

As ultimately came to light, the family were not neglectful or putting their child in danger, as the hospital (and the media) initially concluded. The Kings had carefully researched the situation and decided to forego Southampton’s proposed treatment of aggressive radiotherapy, in favor of proton beam treatment, which is less likely to have a blunderbuss effect on the healthy cells of the brain.

The King case brings to light the problem of making the views of one group of medical professionals the ultimate authority over medical decisions of minors. A few years ago, I wrote about a family I called the "Smiths”. In that case, Social Services took the issue of newborn Alex’s slight underweight (a trait shared by many on the baby's maternal side of the family) and proceeded to build an entire case of parental "failure to attend to the baby's medical needs" around what were well informed decisions about alternative health care.

The Smiths ‘neglect’ was their refusal to give their newborn injected vitamin K, the Guthrie (heel prick) test or vaccinations. This refusal to conform to the views of the 'professionals' resulted in an interim care order and the Smiths being placed in a family centre for 24 hour surveillance for about four months. The long hooks of Social Services were firmly sunk in.

The Smiths were then let out of the family center, but ordered to live with Joe Smith's parents. This caused no end of friction between the couple. Joe's parents smoked in front of the baby, against Lisa's wishes. His mother was critical of everything Lisa does and has firmly sided with Social Services in blaming the baby's underweight on her daughter in law, even though Lisa sought the advice of three health professionals.

Disabled from a botched knee operation, Lisa was forced to live in a house with stairs that she had to continually negotiate just to go to the loo.

Relations between Lisa and Joe, which had been "extremely" happy for 12 years, became strained to the point where the word divorce crept into the conversation.

The Smiths were convinced they could save their relationship if they were able to proceed with plans to move to their own home. They put in an offer on a three bedroom house in Wales; Joe, a former bricklayer who studied to be a financial advisor, wanted to go and seek permanent work there and get off state benefits. Lisa's extended and supportive family live there and were happy to assist with the rearing of the baby.

Social Services, however, decided that Joe shouldn’t work because Lisa is disabled, even though she explained that she was perfectly able to get around on her "one and a half legs", particularly in the new house which had facilities all on one floor.
Their future completely hung in the balance for months, while the Smiths waited for psychological and paediatric assessments, to whether they were fit to keep the baby and move to Wales or whether Social Services could retain joint control over Alex until he was school age.
Make no mistake: this case wasn’t about the health of Alex who, by six months, was a bruiser between the 75th and 91st percentile in height and weight.

As with Aysha King, the case was about professionals asserting arbitrary control over an entrenched position. The problem here was simply that Lisa wasn’t willing to blindly listen to her doctors.

Lisa had good reason to be wary of medical professionals. She's disabled because of a number of botched knee operations. She had an appendix operation that turned septic and has had numerous other incidents in hospital. She knows health professionals are not infallible and she doesn't mind saying so.

The problem is that Lisa is a bit like Randle P. McMurphy, the Jack Nicholson character in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. She got a bit prickly with mindless authority; indeed, her major sin, she was told, is that she doesn't listen to professionals. That attitude even led to accusations of Munchausen's syndrome by proxy.

Ultimately, the Smiths prevailed, but only after they had to hire a lawyer and take their case to court. Ultimately it took the law to fight the medical profession to enable a couple to get out from under the clutches of the Nurse Ratcheds of Nottingham and make some well reasoned decisions for their child.

Welcome to the People’s Politics of Health

Although the ‘yes to independence movement’ in Scotland may have lost the battle, it has won the war for all of us.  I’m ancestrally Scottish, but for me the outcome of the vote for independence was entirely beside the point.  

 

What the referendum did was to demonstrate that the ordinary person on the street still wields enormous power over politics and politicians.  And this can only be good news for one of the biggest issues that demands the people’s vote right now: health care.

As Russell Brand wrote as a guest editor in the New Stateman last year:  ‘The maintenance of this system depends on our belief that “there’s nothing we can do”.’

After Scotland, I hope that nobody believes that anymore. The most remarkable thing about Scottish vote was that people abandoned their sense of political apathy.  Something like 97 per cent of Scots registered to vote in this referendum.  Nearly 90 per cent turned out yesterday to vote.  People were passionate about this subject in a way that I haven’t seen in my lifetime since the days of the Vietnam War and Watergate.

As with the European elections last spring, the UK politicians were scared out of their wits over Scotland, so much so that all three parties paid 11th hour visits to the north, entreating the Scottish electorate to stay put with the UK.  Imagine being in David Cameron’s shoes, and going down in history as the UK prime minister that allowed Scotland to secede from the union.

In order to sweeten the pot, he made all sorts of last-minute promises and concessions about maximum devolution, extra benefits for Scots, independent taxation and the like that are bound to stir the Welsh, the Northern Irish and the English to say, ‘And what about us?’ in the days ahead.  All this suggests we are in for a good deal of political change.

Although the ‘Ayes’ didn’t get a majority, they demonstrated that each of us, by the strength of our vote and our political commitment, wields enormous power to change things.  A minority party can win, as many did across Europe in the recent European Parliaments – parties that essentially stand for a devolution from the EU. We can vote the old fat-cat Brussels pols out; we can vote to leave a country like the UK; we can even vote to leave Europe, as the UK may well do in a few years.  

And here’s why I think this is good news for health care.  As government became more centralized, in Europe, in the US and even in the UK, so the governments, propped up by multinationals like the pharmaceutical companies, have wielded enormous power in deciding which kinds of health care to provide.  They have used this to systematically dismantle alternative, integrative and innovative solutions to health. And they have silenced many dissenters and innovators. 

I have just been reading the story of Dr Marco Ruggiero, a medical doctor and molecular biologist who has carried out extensive research on macrophages, cells of the immune system that defend us against pathogens like bacteria, but also against cancer cells. He’s been particularly interested in protein called ‘Gc-derived Macrophage-Activating Factor’ (GcMAF) and its effect on cancer.

He and his colleagues have published extensively on the role of this protein in cancer and other health conditions, including autoimmune diseases and even autism. His work essentially shows that these proteins assist the body in turning cancer cells healthy. He may well be working on a cure for cancer.

Of course the Big Pharma medical establishment doesn’t like this one little bit. He’s had the usual coterie of professional threats, his computer taken by authorities and files copied, his home wiretapped. He and his wife finally decided they’d had enough.  They left their home in Italy, moving to Switzerland where he carries on his clinical work. 

Alternative health needs to be put on the political agenda.  It is not an underestimate to say that this is the civil rights issue of our time.

The politicians are now forced listen to anyone with a major political voice.  The millions in the UK who make use of non-drug forms of health care outweigh the number of people who go to their GP.  Now is the time to put this on the political agenda, not only in the UK and all over the world. 

All the CDC’s men

The problem with a cover-up is that it just keeps metastasizing. Think of the Richard Nixon White House. To secure a victory in the 1972 US presidential election, the President’s Republican re-election committee started off sanctioning a few standard dirty tricks against the Democratic party,  but by the time of Nixon’s resignation, many of the major figures running America stood accused of involvement in multiple cover-ups of a host of federal offenses, from political sabotage and obstruction of justice, to money-laundering, and perjury.

 

At the point just before it all began to unravel, White House chief counsel John Dean, warning his boss about the difficulty of keeping the lid on all these clandestine activities, famously referred to them as a ‘cancer on the presidency’.

A cancer on the CDC
A similar kind of malignancy now engulfs America’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—the US government body invested with protecting the nation against infectious diseases—after fresh revelations of alleged data-tampering in vaccine studies.

In 2004, scientists at the CDC’s then National Immunization Program carried out a study intended to settle all the questions surrounding the measles–mumps–rubella (MMR) vaccine (produced by drug company Merck) and a possible link to autism. They’d compared the ages of 624 autistic children at the time of their first MMR vaccination with some 1,800 children who’d developed normally and claimed to have found no significant link between the vaccine and the development of autism, nor any statistically significant increased risk for any racial or ethnic group.

When the study was published in 2004 (Pediatrics, 2004; 113: 259–66), it was considered a definitive refutation of the work of British gastroenterologist Dr Andrew Wakefield, whose research had first uncovered a possible link between the triple vaccine and the development of autism and gastrointestinal disorders.

Statistical jiggery pokery
There the story stood for nearly nine years until Brian Hooker, associate professor of biology at Simpson University in California, decided to take a fresh look at the data. He filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the original data and, while reanalyzing it, he got a call from CDC epidemiologist Dr William Thompson, who’d been a co-author of the 2004 paper and who now felt compelled to set the story straight by offering to collaborate on the new paper.

During multiple phone calls, Thompson revealed some of the statistical jiggery-pokery that had been used to hone the sample size of the children to allow manipulation of the data. The CDC investigators had in fact discovered a 3.4-fold (or 340 per cent) increase in autism for African American boys in the study. However, this risk was never published because, according to Thompson, he and his fellow researchers cherry-picked which participants they wanted to include in their analyses.

As the new study says, the original study by DeStefano et al. limited the total African American cohort to include only those individuals who possessed a valid State of Georgia birth certificate, which decreased the statistical power of their analysis. This reduced the study sample by a whopping 41 per cent, virtually disqualifying most of the African Americans originally included and ultimately skewing the final results to make it appear that the vaccine carried minimal risk.

After numerous discussions with Thompson, Hooker published his re-analysis in early August (Transl Neurodegener, 2014; 3: 16). This time, it clearly shows that the African American boys in the study given the MMR vaccine before 24 months of age were more likely to develop autism.

The CDC’s deep throat
Thompson’s whistleblowing offers shocking evidence of deception and fraud at the heart of the US government agency charged with vaccine safety.

He decided to leak the original correspondence he’d had with Dr Julie Gerberding—then head of the CDC—dated February 2, 2004, sent one week before a pivotal meeting at the Institute of Medicine on vaccine safety and autism. In the letter, Thompson laments the fact that his findings weren’t good news: “I will have to present several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism,” he wrote.

He also urges her to respond to questions raised by Congressman David Weldon in two letters regarding “issues surrounding the integrity of your scientists in the National Immunization Program.” And he hints at a cover-up of the truth concerning the safety of vaccines: “I’ve repeatedly told individuals in the [National Immunization Program Office of Directors] over the last several years that they’re doing a very poor job representing immunization safety issues and that we’re losing the public relations war.”

In a separate 2002 email to CDC officials after their study had been done but before it was published, Thompson also hints at the possibility of a multiple cover-up when writing of his discomfiture over documents being sent by the CDC to the Department of Justice investigating MMR and vaccine damage.

“I don’t think anyone has broken the law,” he says, but the testimony of one of his report’s co-authors before a Congressional committee in 2002 about MMR and autism makes him uneasy, particularly after discovering that the co-author was being represented by a lawyer from another government department—the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD)—which presumably also claims no association between vaccination and autism.

In the email, Thompson announces that he’ll be hiring his own lawyer to assure that all the appropriate documents are provided. “My level of concern has also caused me to seriously consider removing my name as an author on the draft manuscript,” he wrote.

This is not the first time the CDC has been caught in the act of questionable activities. For six years, Hooker—himself the father of a 16-year-old with autism who he claims is ‘vaccine-damaged’, and an advisor for the Focus Autism Foundation, which funded his re-analysis—doggedly filed requests through the Freedom of Information Act for the original data on studies supposedly demonstrating that the preservative thimerosal, the mercury-based preservative used in numerous vaccines, was not implicated in autism. After the CDC repeatedly stalled in handing over these supposedly public documents, he was forced to file a lawsuit against them. Ultimately, he discovered that numerous studies supposedly proving the safety of thimerosal were similarly, seriously flawed.

The media black-out
But that’s only the beginning of the cover-up. In the 1970s, when news of the Watergate burglary first broke, the press was instrumental in exposing the lies and deceit at the heart of the US government. Today, in the age of corporate-run media, the press is largely in collusion.

There has been a virtual press blackout of a major act of conspiracy by a government agency—a scam potentially as big as Watergate—and it’s been left to the alternative press, including parent-led autism and vaccination sites, to run with the story.

When news about Hooker’s findings and Thompson’s whistleblowing were posted on the CNN website as an iReport (news posted by viewers), it got more than 45,000 views and 178 comments, largely from people requesting that the channel formally cover the story. Not only did CNN not cover the story, but it also deleted the iReport.

What’s more, once the story began to emerge in the alternative press, the journal Translational Neurodegeneration, which published Hooker’s paper, added a red warning box stating that an “expression of concern has been published for this article”. The box redirects readers to a comment showing that the journal publisher “has serious concerns about the validity of its conclusions”.

Modified limite
d hang-out
On September 15, 1972, Nixon congratulated John Dean for his role in what another of the President’s men called “the modified, limited hangout” in “containing” the Watergate cover-up: “The way you've handled it . . . has been very skilful . . . putting your fingers in the dikes every time that leaks have sprung here and sprung there.”

These new revelations suggest that data tampering is business as usual inside the CDC, but that its members are beginning to run out of fingers to plug the leaks.

Nixon himself never entirely atoned for his sins. He had to resign the presidency, but was ultimately pardoned by his successor. And Dr Gerberding, the head of the CDC at the time of the study? She’s got a new job—as president of Merck’s vaccine division. No doubt she’s been replaced by a whole new group of all the president’s men.

 

Robin Williams – connecting in The Field?

This week I got an interesting letter from Aaron Sanders, a reader of mine, about some precognitive ‘messages’ about the sad death of Robin Williams.  It all centers around Robin Williams’s encounter with the famous gorilla Koko, who as you no doubt know, understands and uses American sign language.  If you haven’t seen this video on YouTube, have a look at their magical connection:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOVS9zotSqM

 

This week I got an interesting letter from Aaron Sanders, a reader of mine, about some precognitive ‘messages’ about the sad death of Robin Williams.  It all centers around Robin Williams’s encounter with the famous gorilla Koko, who as you no doubt know, understands and uses American sign language.  If you haven’t seen this video on YouTube, have a look at their magical connection:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOVS9zotSqM

According to her handlers, this was the first time Koko laughed in six months following the death of her close companion, a fellow ape named Michael.

Aaron is a full-time investor and day-trader, so it’s his job to constantly follow the news feeds on Twitter.

‘Two of the guys I follow - completely unrelated:  one, a trader from London, and one, an author from Missouri - both of them made tweets (only minutes apart) about a Gorilla named Koko who I had NEVER heard-of before in my life,’ wrote Aaron.

‘The trader from London had a picture of Koko being upset due to the Bitcoin price falling, and the author from Missouri made a [joke about Koko]. 

‘Just to repeat my point, these two guys are completely unrelated, and each of them made their Koko comments within minutes of each other, hours before Robin's death).

‘At the time, I thought it was very interesting that these two completely unrelated guys each made tweets involving Koko, and I have NEVER heard of this interesting gorilla in my life.

Five hours later, Aaron began noticing the first tweets of the news Williams had just killed himself. One hour after these news feeds, Aaron then received a retweet of the viral video of Koko and Williams tickling each other. ‘And then the odd Koko tweets I received six hours earlier made perfect sense as a case of mass precognition of the powerful tragic event with Robin Williams.’

And now the papers were filled with stories of Koko being close to tears when her handlers told her of Williams’ death, signing her words for ‘cry woman’ when she returned.

This story isn’t simply a story of human precognition ‘in the Field’. It also revives the entire debate about what exactly animals feel. To the scientific community, an animal is still perceived as nothing much more than a robot with an array of chemical processes, without the ability to register much more than the crudest pain or fear—certainly none of the more complicated human feelings such as excitement, boredom, annoyance, anger or suspicion.

However, these attitudes are now being challenged with the advent of sophisticated brain-imaging technology that can reveal brain function in specific areas of the brain in people with emotional disorders.

A number of scientists, in studying the brains of both animals and humans, have discovered remarkable similarities in emotional biology between species. Increasingly, scientists are coming to believe that animals have sentience—the ability to have a conscious experience, to compare and understand experience, to have an internal representation of what is going on in their lives—in effect, to know that they know.

At the forefront of this underexplored field of research is Jaak Panksepp, professor emeritus of the department of psychology at Bowling Green State University, in Ohio.

According to Panksepp, aside from the core emotions of rage, fear, the drive to chase prey and curiosity, which sit in the more primitive portion of the brain, the ‘higher brain centres’ lie in the newer sections of the brain, the ‘neo-mammalian’ cerebral cortex, or neo-cortex. It is here that animals, like us humans, develop sophisticated secondary ‘social’ emotions: separation distress; sexual attraction and lust; social attachment and bonding; and play.

These secondary emotions are of the more complicated variety as they require reflection and choice—a weighing up of the effects of different actions. Without human speech, animals ordinarily cannot prove to us that they think the same way we do about a certain situation/ Nevertheless, we do know that the brain biochemistry connected with certain sophisticated human feelings is found in a range of other species, and that the same emotions also cause the same measurable chemical changes in their brain, too. Consequently, Panksepp and others have inferred that secondary emotion is not a uniquely human trait. 

As noted animal scientist Temple Grandin says, the difference between animal and human emotions is a matter of degree, rather than of kind. That is why Koko is so extraordinary – her language affords a tiny window into an animal’s soul.

Unconditional love comes naturally to a dog or cat; animals aren’t ambivalent or repressed about their emotions. As Grandin says, there is no such thing as a love–hate relationship in the animal kingdom. “If an animal loves you, he loves you no matter what. He doesn’t care what you look like or how much money you make,” she says. Or, in Koko’s case, how famous you are.

Standing for something or falling (over) for anything

After removing our magazine What Doctors Don’t Tell You for sale, Tesco is learning to its cost about exactly what makes for a good corporate brand.

 After removing our magazine What Doctors Don’t Tell You for sale, Tesco is learning to its cost about exactly what makes for a good corporate brand.

Hundreds and hundreds of our subscribers have informed Tesco that they are boycotting the store chain as the story has gone wildly viral on the internet without much prompting on our part. This wave of anger toward the store chain shows little signs of stopping.

When our customers first objected to the removal of WDDTY, Tesco’s customer service department maintained that this was simply a numbers game. The problem with WDDTY had nothing to do with the legitimacy of the content, or bigger issues like censorship or the right to hear about natural medicine, or even whether those supposedly complaining about WDDTY were actually legitimate Tesco customers.

As the customer service people explained to our readers, their numerical equation was all about the relatively small numbers they were selling against the number of complaints they initially got from the trolls and their organized campaign. Indeed, the trolls worked out that any magazine that has 150 complaints against it will be removed from the shelves.

A statement of values

We are a small publisher producing a niche title. Although we sold well in Tesco, we don’t sell as many copies as, say, magazines showing celebrities in their luxury homes. As Tesco now sees, that attitude and those numbers have turned hugely against them as hundreds of our readers boycott their stores, not simply because they banned WDDTY but because of what that tells our people about what Tesco does or, in this case, does not stand for.

As one of our readers wrote recently, by stocking WDDTY, Tesco had made a statement about their values; in fact, he noticed that his local store was stocking not only our magazine but also stocking more organic fruit and vegetables and other organic products.

From this he deduced that Tesco was taking a positive stand in enlightening their customers about improved nutrition and better health. He felt good about what the store stood for and felt good about shopping there. Here was a store that didn’t simply just pile ‘em high and sell ‘em cheap. This was a store that wished to guide its customers to make intelligent buying decisions.

This conclusion, he said, proved to be premature, when Tesco summarily withdrew our magazine from its shelves and its customer service department gave him their spiel about it all being about numbers. They even sent him a voucher to say ‘sorry’. He also noticed that in attempting to compete purely on the supermarket price wars, his local Tesco had reduced their line of organic food.

He politely returned their voucher and told him he was no longer planning to shop at Tesco.

Price reductions, special offers vouchers and money off don’t compare with long-term measures like quality, dependability, service and trust, he said.

As we realized, a brand isn’t just about what exactly you have for sale. It’s about what exactly you stand for.

Branding fairness

The John Lewis Partnership understands this. In the midst of the Great Depression’s banking crisis in 1929, John Spedan Lewis, who became the head of department stores in Britain after the sudden death of his father, believed that the “present state of affairs” — by which he meant outside shareholders who separate the providing of capital and its use — was a “perversion of the proper working of capitalism.” He thought it was unfair to have faceless outside millionaires owning his store, while his workers eked out a living.

He turned his department store into a partnership, with each and every employee a part owner. No matter how menial a person’s contribution, each employee would receive an array of perks, including excellent pension schemes and country-club membership for weekends away. But the most radical idea of all was that profits would be split among all employees.
Although the workers would receive differential salaries, according to their contribution, to this day, each employee, from the lowest shelf-stacker to the chairman, receives the same percentage payout of his own salary as a bonus.

That value system started by Lewis continues to pay off. In the midst of the recession in 2010, when Marks and Spencer, Britain’s No 1 retailer, made profits of just 5 per cent, John Lewis distributed £151 million in profits, with every one of the store chain’s 70,000 employees receiving 15 per cent of their basic salary — the equivalent of 10 weeks’ pay.
“It was tough,” said one employee about the 2009 recession, “but we all pulled together.”

A good brand is about standing for a set of values – whether it is about fairness, in the case of John Lewis, or against censorship, as stores like Tesco’s should be championing. And the public is extremely savvy. They know, as the old saying goes, if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything. And eventually, you’ll probably fall over.

If you have a view about Tesco’s brand values or its recent decisions about WDDTY, write: customer.service@tesco.co.uk

How to bankrupt the National Health Service

The attack on What Doctors Don’t Tell You is part of a larger concerted campaign to demolish alternative medicine of every variety.  Small, organized groups, the self-styled guardians of ‘true’ medicine and science, have been systematically harassing many alternative individual practitioners and professional organizations, while Brussels and the UK government, lobbied by the pharmaceutical industry, have been busily putting into place a series of laws that are restricting access to high dose vitamins, herbal supplements and other natural medicine.

The attack on What Doctors Don’t Tell You is part of a larger concerted campaign to demolish alternative medicine of every variety.  Small, organized groups, the self-styled guardians of ‘true’ medicine and science, have been systematically harassing many alternative individual practitioners and professional organizations, while Brussels and the UK government, lobbied by the pharmaceutical industry, have been busily putting into place a series of laws that are restricting access to high dose vitamins, herbal supplements and other natural medicine.

The problem is that no one  — skeptics, politicians and even the drugs industry lobbyists — have paused long enough to join the dots about out how this campaign could accelerate the decline of the system they purport to defend.

The following to do with Britain and the National Health Service, but it equally could apply to any Western country with a health care system.

Consider a few inconvenient statistics, as Dr. Robert Verkerk, director of the Alliance for Natural Health, discusses in a forthcoming issue of WDDTY.  The think tank The King’s Fund is predicting a financial crisis for the NHS within two years, as it struggles to support its 1.7 million employees (the NHS is the fifth largest employer in the world, says Dr. Verkerk).

Both political parties recognize that the demographics of the British population are shifting.  At the moment, one in six of us is over 65, but in 35 years, the over 65s will represent one of every four citizens.  And we’re not enjoying rude good health.  Although we’re living a bit longer, we’re getting ill earlier than we used to.

Small wonder that the Labour Party is kicking around the idea of a ‘death’ tax of 15 per cent on the estates of the recently deceased to pay for care of the swelling numbers requiring the NHS while still alive. And the current conservative government plans to cut the NHS budget by $2 billion and replace hospital care with extra ‘care at home’ initiatives meaning that you may not be able to get seen by a hospital at the point where you might really need it.

While handling emergencies admirably, the medical profession is woefully ill equipped to help this ageing population prevent chronic illness.  As Dr. Sarah Myhill, outspoken British doctor who specializes in treating many chronic conditions holistically, writes, when it comes to actually understanding disease, all of doctor-induced disease – from medical mistakes to the side effects of prescription drugs – ‘pales into insignificance when compared with the intellectual neglect demonstrated by doctors failing to understand, recognize and prevent the two major causes of death; namely heart disease and cancer. The worst example of this neglect is the nonsense propagated by doctors that a high fat diet results in high cholesterol and so heart and arterial disease – indeed this has become the popular accepted wisdom.’

So just imagine for one moment if all those attempting to suppress natural medicine are successful and all of alternative medicine disappears. 

Natural medicine is a £6 billion pound industry in the UK alone.  Aside from the disastrous effect destruction of this sector would have on the British economy, think of the impact this would have on the already collapsing NHS.  For many years now, more visits have been paid to alternative practitioners than to GPs in Britain. 

Imagine, for a moment, that all those millions of patients now have to line up to see their GPs, instead of going to their nutritionist, homeopath or acupuncturist. 

Imagine the millions more who get will ill earlier than they would have because they are unable able to get hold of dietary supplements that are increasingly necessary giving the declining nutritional value of most food.

Imagine the effect on the population if our only recourse with chronic illness is to rely on a system of medicine that is now the third leading cause of death in the US after heart disease and cancer.

Are you starting to get the mental picture?  Millions more sick people requiring more hospital care earlier.

The bottom line, pure and simple, is that killing natural medicine would kill free medicine.  If the politicians and the drug industry have their way, destroying alternatives will do more than anything else to accelerate the end of the NHS. 

 

2+2 = 4

Here’s one in the eye for the sceptics.  Earlier this week, a judge in a York court in the UK allowed a dream premonition to be considered as evidence in a court case involving a dispute over lottery winnings.

 

Here’s one in the eye for the sceptics.  Earlier this week, a judge in a York court in the UK allowed a dream premonition to be considered as evidence in a court case involving a dispute over lottery winnings.

Judge Mark Gosnell ruled that Hayati Kucukkoylu, the owner of a Turkish restaurant, should hand over half of his £1 million ($1.7 million dollars) in Euro Millions lottery winnings to one of his waiters, who claimed he’d urged his boss to enter the lottery in January 2012 because of a premonition dream he’d had the night before.

Although Kucukkoylu paid for the ticket and chose the winning numbers in January 2012, his waiter Fatih Ozcan claimed that he had pressured his boss to enter the lottery and had himself purchased the winning ticket. After dreaming that he was holding a large bundle of cash with his boss standing in front of him, Ozcan interpreted the dream to mean that his boss should enter the lottery the next day and that he needed to be the one to choose the winning numbers.

As Judge Gosnell concluded: ‘ Mr. Ozcan is a strong believer in the power of dreams and interpreted this to mean that he and Mr. Kucukkoylu would win the lottery."

When Ozcan approached Kucukkoylu about his dream the following day, the owner was having none of it, so the waiter persisted over three hours in pestering his boss to enter before he finally relented. In the court case, Ozcan claimed that half of the winnings were his because he himself actually physically purchased the ticket.

Kucukkoylu went on to win his £1 million, but then refused to split it, at which point Ozcan sued and won his case this week. 

Judge Gosnell found Ozcan’s claim about his dream entirely ‘plausible’, particularly as CCTV footage backed up Ozcan’s claim that he and his boss filled out the winning ticket together. 

"I find that the effect of these conversations was that Mr. Kucukkoylu and Mr. Ozcan entered into a contract to jointly play the lottery on an equal basis," Gosnell ruled. "There should be a declaration that the prize money from this winning lottery ticket should be shared equally between Mr. Kucukkoylu and Mr. Ozcan."

Noted British skeptic Richard Wiseman was quick to dismiss Ozcan’s dream as proof of the power of premonition.  ‘There are millions of people who dream about winning the lottery, who don’t win the lottery, but they are not going to mention it because it is slightly embarrassing.  It’s just the law of large numbers.’

That’s exactly why you can’t dismiss this evidence as chance: the probability of large numbers. The odds of winning the lottery are 16 million to one.  And the odds of having a premonition dream that your boss needs to buy the ticket for both of you to win the lottery and the following day he does and you do win it are possibly gazillions to one that it will occur by chance alone.

It’s also why you can’t dismiss the work of the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) lab, led by dean of engineering Robert Jahn.  Jahn and his partner, psychologist Brenda Dunne.  The PEAR lab set up a series of remote viewing studies with volunteers set us as partners. One would stay in the lab and the other would be given a sealed envelope and told to travel to the destination written inside. 

The remote viewers remaining behind in the PEAR lab were asked to name their traveling partner’s destinations not only before the actually got there, but also many hours or days before they even knew where they were going.  The remove viewers would also have to record and draw his or her impression of the traveler’s destination, from half an hour tofive days before the traveler arrived. 

Of PEAR’s 336 formal trials involving remote viewing, the majority were set up as ‘precognitive’ remote perception and were even more successful than those set up in ‘real time.’ Nearly two-thirds were more accurate than could be accounted for by chance.  The overall odds against chance in the PEAR’S complete remote viewing database was one billion to one.  

These are the inconvenient figures that won’t go away – the numbers that show us that human beings have capacities far more complex than chemical reactions and electrical signaling, and that 2 + 2 often add up to more than 4. 

Has What Doctors Don’t Tell You Ever Helped You?

I was moved to tears one evening after a talk of mine, when one member of the audience approached me to say that when she’d had cancer, she kept a copy of The Field by her bedside, and for some reason, the message within its pages inspired her to keep going and successfully overcome her cancer.  No book review, no matter how glowing, can ever match that kind of reader reaction. 

 

Dear readers,

 

Has What Doctors Don’t Tell You Ever Helped You?

 

I was moved to tears one evening after a talk of mine, when one member of the audience approached me to say that when she’d had cancer, she kept a copy of The Field by her bedside, and for some reason, the message within its pages inspired her to keep going and successfully overcome her cancer.  No book review, no matter how glowing, can ever match that kind of reader reaction.

 

I was reminded of that yesterday during a launch party for Bite the Sun, a new website helping people maximize their health and well-being, when a woman I’ll call Marie told me that she’d recently been through a dark time and a book of mine spoke to her so deeply that it lifted her up and changed her life.

 

When a journalist once asked me what I consider the major focus of my work, I replied that I thought that I write about hope – hope against illness and hope against a dark and reductive world view.

 

With What Doctors Don’t Tell You, we have a very specific aim:  to restore hope to you about your options to stay or become well.  Many supporters of What Doctors Don’t Tell You, in fighting the recent spurious attempts by the trolls to ban us in Tesco, have given us wonderful feedback about how that aim has been achieved.

 

They tell us specific stories about some article in our pages that helped them regain their health. Like Sam, I’ll call him, who approached us at a conference and told us that because of WDDTY, he still has both of his legs.  Or Sally, I’ll call her, who just told Tesco that because of our information in our pages, one of her relatives recently successfully battled cancer.  In many cases, these are people the conventional medicine could not help. The information about non-drug alternatives literally saved their lives.

 

We’ve never taken a poll before about how useful we’ve been to your lives, but we’d love to hear from you:  what has WDDTY ever done for you?  Have we helped you in any specific way with your health?  Please reply here or write us in care of alice@wddty.co.uk

 

And please keep up the pressure on Tesco.  If they hear from enough of you, they will re-consider. Continue writing them to tell them why you’d like to buy WDDTY from them and what you will do if they refuse to re-stock it: customer.service@tesco.co.uk

MEET THE PEOPLE WHO WOULD DICTATE YOUR HEALTH CARE

As you know, we have been the target of a concerted campaign to get the store chains to stop stocking us. The architects of this campaign are the same people who spend a good deal of time attacking and harassing alternative practitioners of every variety.

 

As you know, we have been the target of a concerted campaign to get the store chains to stop stocking us. The architects of this campaign are the same people who spend a good deal of time attacking and harassing alternative practitioners of every variety.

Their numbers aren’t large (there’re only about 80 of them in total), and they aren’t well followed, but they are well organized and fuelled by a good deal of self-righteous passion about their mission, which is to stamp out what they view as quackery (ie, natural medicine of every variety, particularly the likes of homeopathy).

So we thought we should shine a light on the qualifications of the most vocal proponents of a group who believe they have the right to determine what you can or can’t read about your health or indeed the kinds of medical treatments you should be allowed to have access to.

Simon Singh.  Singh is not a medical doctor; he has a Ph.D in particle physics.  As he often signs his letters ‘Dr Singh’ when writing to Tesco or our distributors, most stores and media naturally assume that he has medical qualifications.  He does not, nor does he have a history of studying or writing about conventional medicine. He’s written books about mathematical problems and patterns, codes and code-breaking and even cosmology, but nothing to date about conventional medicine – only one co-authored book (Trick or Treatment?- the clue to the slant is in the title) largely trashing alternative medicine. Singh is the public face of Sense About Science, a charity set up by a holding company in India, whose trustees include Simon Singh and his older brother, Tom, who founded the high street chain New Look. Sense about Science reports that it is supported by donations from a variety of sources, including the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and many pharmaceutically backed charities, such as Cancer UK.

 ‘Josephine Jones’.  ‘She’ is the pseudonym for two people: Michael and Laura Thomason, who live in Warrington. Mike works as a database developer at Catalent Pharma Solutions; there is a Laura Thomason on Linkedin who works as a supervisor at an Esquire’s Coffee Shop, but we can’t verify if they are one and the same. If so, there can’t be many people popping in and ordering cappuccinos because she and her husband seem to have the time to catalogue WDDTY’s every move, which they circulate on Josephine Jones’ blog as a constantly updated ‘Master List’. Presently, they are carrying out a survey of stores we’re in, presumably in hopes they might be able to pick us off, one store at a time. Neither professes to any medical qualifications.

Guy Chapman, who created a website called ‘What What Doctors Don’t Tell You Doesn’t Tell You’, and writes a good deal of bile-filled statements about alternative practitioners, is a software developer for Dell Computers. He’s also a member of a choir.

Jo Brody works two days a week as a public engagement coordinator for a research project which runs across four sites, including UCL, Queen Mary, City University and Swansea University), studying how to make medical devices safer. Jo’s job is to update the website and expand the project’s online presence.  For the rest of the week she works as an information officer at Diabetes UK. Previously she worked as a secretary for Professor Stephen Wharton. As she freely admits: ‘I am not medically trained.’

Alan Henness. He and his wife Maria MacLachlan, who live in Harrow, are effectively the Nightingale Collaboration, a tiny organization that was given seed money by Sense About Science, but that spends a prodigious amount of time reporting advertisers and practitioners of alternative medicine to The Advertising Standards Authority. Despite the name, the ASA is not a government body; it’s an advertising-industry-sponsored organization with no teeth. The best it can do is place advertisers it deems out of line on the naughty step, listing them on as a ‘non-compliant advertiser’ on its own website. Evaluations of the advertisements of alternative medicine or practitioners through the ASA are a stacked deck; they are evaluated, as our ads were, by known skeptics like Dr. Edzard Ernst, Simon Singh’s co-author of Trick or Treatment?

Henness does not report any other employment, at least on his Linkedin page; previously he was R&D manager for Honeywell Security and Customer Electronics.  Although he appears to have no background in evaluating or studying medicine or alternative medicine, as he writes, ‘the Nightingale Collaboration was set up to enable my wife, Maria MacLachlan, and I to share our knowledge and experience in challenging misleading claims in healthcare advertising and to encourage anyone who is concerned at protecting the public from misinformation in healthcare promotion to join us in challenging it.”

Maria Maclachlan herself is the Community Services Officer of the British Humanist Society, which campaigns ‘for an open society and a secular state with no religious privilege or discrimination based on religion or belief,’ according to its website. (Alan was former Convenor for the Humanist Society.) On the website Think Humanism (http://www.thinkhumanism.com/humanism2.html), Maria wrote, in a short précis of what it means to be a humanist: ‘Humanists embrace the moral principle known as the Golden Rule. This means we believe that people should aim to treat each other as they would like to be treated themselves – with tolerance, consideration and compassion.’

I wonder if this ‘Golden Rule’ also includes harassing groups, practitioners or organizations who advocate or advertise alternative medicine?

Andy Lewis. Set up the ‘Quackometer’ site, which he claims to be an experiment in ‘critical thinking’. Doesn’t reveal what his credentials, education or employment history are – says they ‘don’t matter’ nor does debating evidence because wording on websites will, through analysis of critical thinking, offer prima facie evidence of ‘quackery’. 

That’s who they are. WDDTY, on the other hand, has seven medical doctors on its editorial panel, several (like Dr. Michel Odent) world renowned, a number of PhDs and other highly qualified practitioners of a number of alternative disciplines, all of whom regularly praise our magazine.  Thousands of doctors and health practitioners of every persuasion regularly read WDDTY and comment enthusiastically. The two editors of our magazine have medical science journalists for 25 years and every word in our pages is checked by a science editor with a long and illustrious history of writing and editing medical studies for the pharmaceutical industry.

Do you want these eight people to be the ones to determine what you can read about your own health care?

If not, write to Tesco today and ask them to re-stock What Doctors Don’t Tell You.  And tell them a bit more about the people who fire off ‘complaints’ –  that they are neither true customers nor people with either the training or experience to evaluate the information in our pages: customer.service@tesco.co.uk

THE CAMPAIGN AGAINST WHAT DOCTORS DON’T TELL YOU CONTINUES

A concerted letter-writing campaign by a handful of very vociferous self-styled ‘skeptics’ has managed to convince Tesco that customers are complaining about What Doctors Don’t Tell You, and the store chain has just agreed to withdraw the magazine from the shelves.

A concerted letter-writing campaign by a handful of very vociferous self-styled ‘skeptics’ has managed to convince Tesco that customers are complaining about What Doctors Don’t Tell You, and the store chain has just agreed to withdraw the magazine from the shelves.

These were not legitimate complaints. They were the result of several calls to action by a few sceptical websites to a small band of very devoted and fairly fanatical followers.

This, as you know, is part of an 20-month concerted campaign by Simon Singh, Sense About Science and a variety of rag-tag organizations like the Nightingale Collaboration to ban or crush WDDTY. Singh and co have called Comag, our distributors, multiple times, orchestrated letter writing campaigns to all the store chains that carry the magazine, harassed dozens of our advertisers by reporting them the ASA, sent their foot soldiers to hide our magazines on the shelves of stores and attempted to destroy our Google ranking.  One of our websites was even mysteriously hacked into.They don’t engage in open or legitimate dialogue, only innuendo and bully-boy tactics on our social network sites.

Simon Singh is busy these days tweeting his supporters to write Tesco to thank them for not stocking us.

And all this because they don’t want you to have a choice about the information you have about your health care.

They believe that you should only have access to one sort of health information – the information that ridicules alternative medicine of all persuasions and embraces conventional medicine as currently practiced.  They believe that they have the right to dictate to you the forms of health care you have access to. They claim to be in favour of free speech in science, but only the information they deem acceptable for you to read.

The skeptics have a loyal following, but there are tens of thousands more who support WDDTY and our work. Tesco will reconsider if they hear from customers who want to buy WDDTY in their stores.

If you buy WDDTY at Tesco, you believe in free speech, and freedom of choice in health care, or you believe that Tesco should continue to stock WDDTY, please write to customer service and tell them exactly why: customer.service@tesco.co.uk

 

Sylvia Plath: Maybe it was just the drugs

Sylvia Plath has always fascinated me.  In fact, about 30 years ago, before What Doctors Don’t Tell You and The Field, I nearly did a biography on her and Ted Hughes, not because I considered her a feminist martyr, as she is often portrayed, but because something about the Plath-Hughes myth didn’t quite stack up.  

 

Sylvia Plath has always fascinated me.  In fact, about 30 years ago, before What Doctors Don’t Tell You and The Field, I nearly did a biography on her and Ted Hughes, not because I considered her a feminist martyr, as she is often portrayed, but because something about the Plath-Hughes myth didn’t quite stack up.  

 

I was also intrigued about a man who has not one but two lovers kill themselves by sticking their heads in a gas oven. Assia Weevil, the mistress with whom he betrayed Plath, carried out a copy-cat suicide some years later, but this time took hers and Hughes’ child with her.

 

Think about this for a second.  Here Plath pores all that prodigious talent and energy into hitting the target she’s been aiming for all her young years  -  getting her work published in magazines while she’s still in school,  amassing literary and academic prize after prize, securing the guest editorship for Mademoiselle in New York (the top literary prize for a young  collegiate woman in the Fifties),  and then,  when she’s finally able to take a breather after what was, by all accounts an extraordinarily heady spring. . . she decides she has no talent and tries to kill herself.

 

I can understand the second attempt a bit more. At that point, she’s got a two year old and a six month old when she discovers that Hughes, her husband and the love of her life, has just begun an affair with a close mutual friend of theirs, leaving her as a single mother of two babies, in virtually the same boat as her mother, whom Sylvia often disparaged as martyr mom supreme. 

 

But even then, in the midst of despair, and one of the coldest winters on record, there are ample clues (her suicide note: ‘Please call Dr. Holden’) that she didn’t actually mean to leave her babies and finish herself off.

 

A recently published book called Pain, Parties, Work, which painstakingly details Plath’s month in New York during the Mademoiselle editorship, offered one plausible answer. At one point, author Elizabeth Winder happens to mention, almost as an aside, that Sylvia’s aunt, a doctor, had given her sleeping pills that spring during her junior year at Smith College. She was on them all that year and into the summer, when her aunt saw fit to up the dosage. 

 

Since the benzodiazepams like Valium were not invented until the 1970s, Plath was likely to have been given a barbiturate, and as she tried to kill herself with Nembutal (phenobarbital), it’s likely that that was the one.

 

Nembutal’s side effects include agitation, confusion, nightmares, nervousness, psychiatric disturbance, hallucinations, anxiety, thinking abnormalities, confusion, poor judgment and rebound insomnia. They are highly addictive, and they can cause depression and suicidal ideation (a desire to commit suicide).

 

Compare what happened to Sylvia.  After the New York guest editorship and the social whirl of New York, she went home for her first summer at home with mother, only to discover she didn’t get into a creative writing class and was now stuck at home for the summer for the first time with nothing to do.

 

She decided to read Ulysses (next term’s reading list) and to learn shorthand, but couldn’t concentrate on either (a known side effect of barbituates), which caused extreme agitation. She couldn’t sleep (another side effect) and when her boyfriend left for officer training, she had ridiculous fantasies about him (yet another side effect) and decided that all her talent had suddenly left her (another side effect). 

 

After he left, her mother discovered her one morning with deep red gashes on her legs under her nightgown (suicidal thoughts?), and promptly took her to the family doctor, who prescribed yet more sleeping pills (which would have exacerbated all these side effects) and. . . electroshock therapy.

 

In the 1950s, ECT was administered without anaesthesia or sedatives. During the treatments, Plath would have been kept fully awake, experienced full convulsions and be left, shaking, on her own to recover.

 

One well known side effect of ECT is insomnia.  According to Sylvia’s personal calendars, says Winder, Plath stayed awake, despite her exhaustion, for 21 nights straight.  Soon after that, she tried to commit suicide.

 

Now, I have only ever taken a single sleeping pill in my life – this time, one of the so-called ‘safer’ benzodiazepines (the class that includes Valium). A friend suggested that I get a prescription from my doctor when I was 33 after my first marriage suddenly broke up and I couldn’t sleep. 

 

I slept a strange, disturbing sleep the night I’d begun my prescription, and remember calling my brother that next day and asking him if he would please convince me not to jump out the window. This had nothing to do with distress over the end of the marriage, and I have not once in my life ever entertained a single suicidal thought. 

 

I was a victim of one of these drug’s well-known ‘paradoxical’ side effects, which have been linked to a desire to commit suicide. My brother had a long conversation with me, I chucked the the bottle of pills away and I soon found other and safer ways to get some sleep.

 

The treatment at the time for attempted suicide was nothing less than barbaric. After Sylvia was discovered alive in a crawl space, three days after she’d taken 40 Nembutal, she was placed into a mental hospital.  Doctors could find no trace of mental illness, but nevertheless, in an attempt to shake her out of it, they gave her insulin shock therapy.

 

The side effects of this ‘treatment’ alternate between coma and full-blown seizures, not to mention huge weight gain – hardly a treatment that’s likely to cheer you up.

 

Miraculously, she survived this treatment and did indeed fully recover.  She married, had two much-loved children and in 1962, while she was still nursing her baby son, discovered that her husband was betraying her with Weevil.  Plath ultimately left Hughes and tried to make a go of it in London, on her own, during the worst winter on modern record. 

 

She was writing the poems that made her name, and during that autumn, wrote The Bell Jar, a novelized version of the spring and summer of her breakdown and suicide attempt. This time, her London doctor prescribed antidepressants. 

 

Since SSRIs like Prozac weren’t yet invented, it was likely she was given a tricyclic antidepressant, which can cause confusion, hallucinations, extreme elation or feelings of happiness alternates with depressed moods, anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, and suicidal thoughts or behavior (all very much in evidence in her poems and her journals).

 

In February 1963, she reached a mental cul-de-sac, put her head in the oven and this time, carried it through.

 

I’m not saying that Sylvia didn’t have many personal demons, but maybe, just maybe, she wasn’t just a feminist victim – just a victim of modern medicine. 

How the Healing Experiment REALLY worked

Our Healing Intention Experiment may not have proved anything scientific, due to the problems in study design I reported on last week (https://lynnemctaggart.com/blog/269-results-of-the-first-healing-intention-experiment), but something major and indisputable happened anyway, and it had to do with the shifts that occurred for most of our audience.

Our Healing Intention Experiment may not have proved anything scientific, due to the problems in study design I reported on last week (https://lynnemctaggart.com/blog/269-results-of-the-first-healing-intention-experiment), but something major and indisputable happened anyway, and it had to do with the shifts that occurred for most of our audience.

Todd Voss is better, but the most compelling part of the story may have been the effect on the participants themselves.

 

My initial surveys show that our audience repeatedly described ecstatic states of oneness during the experiment.

 

‘I have experienced a profound breakthrough in my sense of connection with all that is. A deep and embodied experience of oneness,’ wrote one.

 

After the April 26 Intention Experiment nearly two-thirds of our respondents felt a connection to Todd Voss or to the other people participating.

 

‘I feel more connected to the collective,’ wrote another participant.

 

‘I just realized how close we are no matter how far we are from each other distance wise:)

 

The results were even more amazing in the weeks that followed. Forty-five per cent of our  participants noticed changes in their relationships with others after the experiment, and although more than a quarter of the respondents felt more love for loved ones, more than a third felt more love for ‘everyone’ they come into contact with.

 

People reported in getting along better with clients, ex-husbands, siblings, neighbours, even bosses. They noticed more awareness in their relationships with others, and more clarity in their relationships with themselves.

 

‘The relationship with my sister is completely amazing me.... Something shifted. . . especially around trust, forgivness and seeing each other with new eyes.’

 

‘I am less judgmental and stuck in past behaviour when relating to certain family members. I didn't realize I needed an attitude adjustment because I was stuck in old loops,’ wrote another.

 

‘I'm getting along with my older sister and that never happens. It like her heart is softening or opening.’

 

‘Amazingly my mother who I do not see at all, but do speak to whenever she calls, maybe 4 or 5 times a year, phoned me 2 weeks ago. We had a conversation as we have never had in my life.’

 

‘My husband looks at me like I met him yesterday and it feels so good! We feel more connection to each other.’

 

In love with strangers

But the greatest change in relationships was not simply between partners and

spouses, or parents and children, but with relationships in general –including with themselves. Indeed one-quarter of the participants found they were getting along better with everyone, strangers included.

 

I find that it has opened me to all the relationships in my life. I just feel more optimistic and hopeful. I can express myself from a deeper place.’

 

‘I started to connect with new people of like mind! I feel more grounded and full of Love! My intuition and synchronicities in my life have heightened! I seem to be more hyper aware!’

 

‘I am free to speak my truth and be my authentic self.’

 

‘My mind has expanded and I feel called to learn more.’

 

So, for those of you who participated in the 2nd Healing Intention Experiment for Kathy Martin, please tell me more.  What has happened to you since?  Has anything shifted for you in your life – with your work, your emotions, your job, your life?  Did you yourself experience a healing?

 

Please help me – and all of us - understand more about the power of intention by answering a few questions in this survey:

 

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/HH5MJ93

 

Let me know how it was for you, and what kinds of Intention Experiments you’d like to see in future.

 

Results of the first Healing Intention Experiment

On April 26, 2014, we ran our first Healing Intention Experiment, which randomly chose one of two patients suffering from extreme anxiety.

 

This time we worked with Dr. Jeffrey Fannin, director of the Center for Cognitive Enhancement.  Dr. Fannin holds a Ph.D in psychology, has been involved in neuroscience for many years and has a good deal of experience in ‘brain mapping’ states of mental disorder such as anxiety, depression or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. 

 

On April 26, 2014, we ran our first Healing Intention Experiment, which randomly chose one of two patients suffering from extreme anxiety.

 

This time we worked with Dr. Jeffrey Fannin, director of the Center for Cognitive Enhancement.  Dr. Fannin holds a Ph.D in psychology, has been involved in neuroscience for many years and has a good deal of experience in ‘brain mapping’ states of mental disorder such as anxiety, depression or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. 

 

Two patients of Dr. Fannin suffering from anxiety generously offered to donate their time, and allowed themselves essentially to be experimented upon using what is, by any regard, a most unusual therapy: the power of strangers’ thoughts. One was to be chosen as the target, and the other would be the control.

 

Dr. Fannin hooked up both patients to an EEG (electroencephalograph) machine in order to continuously monitor their brain waves. He also attached an EEG to Mario, our  ‘intender’sitting in another room, who would participate with us in sending intention to the chosen target.

 

I had placed the names of both patients in a top hat and pulled one out at random. It turned out I’d chosen Todd Voss, a Gulf and Afghanistan war veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.  Kathy Martin, the other patient, was to act as our control.

 

As we were broadcasting on web television through Quantum World TV, we were able to make use of a split screen, enabling the audience to see me, Dr. Fannin, the patients and their brain waves all in real time. We broadcast a video of Todd telling his story, then asked our audience to attempt to calm down Todd by at least 25 per cent and also to focus on increasing the alpha waves of his brain (the brain waves associated with greater calm and peace). 

 

Human brain waves come in different frequencies, from the very slowest, which are delta and theta, associated with deep meditation and sleep, to alpha (a calm, meditative state) to beta (everyday cognitive tasks) and gamma (extreme focus).  Dr. Fannin’s work entails translating the results of EEG readings into a tomography, or QEEG, showing difference frequencies of a person’s brain waves and comparing them to ‘normal’ brain waves.

 

With brain mapping, a person’s entire brain frequency activity is depicted as a ‘map’ of 30 little ‘heads’ in different colours, each representing certain frequencies of brain waves. Green depicts wave frequencies that correspond most to ‘normal; and a rainbow of colours are used to show how much a person’s brain waves deviate from normal (red, for instance, shows several deviations more than normal; b
lue, several deviations lower than normal).

 

Dr. Fannin carried out brain maps on both Todd and Kathy before the experiment, during the experiment, after the experiment and then a few weeks later, on May 13.

 

Bands of turquoise

The Intention Experiment was incredibly captivating; we could actually see the bands of turquoise, representing the alpha waves, stretch out and become more prominent.

 

Brain mapping done before the experiment had showed certain areas of Todd’s brain with a frequency ‘signature’ characteristic of PTSD. Various brain maps made during the Intention Experiment show that Todd’s alpha waves increased to three standard deviations above normal. Furthermore, the area of the brain that is most representative of PTSD was almost completely normal during the experiment.

 

Other analysis demonstrated that coherence within the brain – the ability of the brain waves to work better together and stay working together – also had improved.

 

Finally, Dr. Fannin worked out what is called an independent t-Test to determine the statistical significance of the experiment. He discovered less than a 1 per cent probability that these results occurred through chance.

 

The same effects were not evident in the brain maps of either Kathy Martin or Mario,

our intender.  He had virtually no change in his alpha waves, and Kathy was affected minimally by the experiment as well. This appears to rule out the possibility that the changed outcome might be the result of the placebo effect.

 

So, our results showed. . .

 

  • Todd’s ‘alpha’ brain waves increased to 3-standard deviations (SD) above normal during the Intention Experiment.

 

  • The red spots on 12 Hz – the brain-wave pattern representative of Todd’s PTSD –  turned almost completely normal during the experiment.

 

  • More of his alpha waves started working together and stayed that way (they became 'coherent').

 

  • Independent t-Test measuring statistical significance shows less than 1 per cent probability results are by chance.

 

  • The contrast with Kathy and with Mario would appear to rule out the possibility that the changed outcome was the result of the placebo effect.

 

These results were initially very encouraging, but there are other issues with the study that must be addressed.

 

Limitations of the study

One difficulty with a study of this type that attempts a highly novel medical intervention is finding willing volunteers and creating such an experiment at reasonable cost.  (The human studies necessary to get a drug onto the market run to about $140 million, for instance.)

 

Dr. Fannin, who generously offered to c
arry out this experiment on a completely pro bono basis, was limited to those willing to undergo such an experiment among his own patient base, most of whom have already had treatment with him. 

 

After the experiment was completed I discovered that Todd Voss had previously undergone two kinds of brain training, one with Dr. Fannin. Part of this training involves teaching techniques to increase a person’s alpha brain waves. 

 

Todd had been asked to make two testimonial videos nearly a year ago, one for Dr. Fannin, in which he described that he has learned how to control his brain waves, among other techniques, and was consequently improved.

 

When Todd’s symptoms returned (as described on his video he made for us), Dr. Fannin regarded him as a deserving candidate for our experiment.

 

Todd’s recent brain maps and new claimed clinical improvement are compelling, and we are extremely pleased that he reports feeling better, and will continue to intend well for him.

 

All parties worked many long hours to carry out this experiment, and I am confident that all intended to provide a study of integrity.  My thanks to all for their tireless work to put this together.  I believe everyone acted in good faith.

 

Nevertheless, because Todd was previously taught techniques that purport to achieve the exact effect that we were attempting to achieve by intention, it is impossible to declare categorically, without doubt, that we’ve demonstrated that any changes in his brain were due to intention, rather than his own brain training.

 

I do wish to emphasize that Todd Voss is blameless; this is simply a problem of study design and the probable result of running a trial under many constraints.

 

Feelings of unity

The conclusions of this experiment may not be claimed as scientific, but it does not invalidate two important results: Todd is feeling better, much better.  And many of our participants had a profound experience, a deep connection with Todd and are feeling better too.

 

Once again, we recorded an overwhelming number of feelings of unity and personal transformation:

 

‘At the onset of the 10 minutes I felt overwhelmed by love and was almost sobbing.’

For a good 5 minutes couldn't stop the tears,’ wrote Melissa. ‘Very connected to Todd.’

 

‘I was completely overwhelmed by so much love,’ wrote Karin. ‘I felt immense gratitude and tears just kept flowing. The energy kept flowing for hours and afterward I also slept peacefully. I felt deeply connected and at peace.’

 

 ‘Todd Voss, I hear the name constantly in my mind,’ wrote Chris. ‘It's as if he has become part of me.’

 

And we’ve discovered numerous people claiming their own kind of healing:

 

 ‘My carpal tunnel injury improved,’ wrote Joan, ‘and I felt very relaxed.  Even slept  better.’

 

‘I suffered with my knee for almost three years,’ wrote another participant. ‘After this experiment all the pain I used to have was gone, completely.’

 

‘My life – everything about it – my health, relationships, outlook, energy level, happiness, openness, etc. just keep improving; I've plainly shifted.’

 

At the end of our May 24 broadcast, we sent intention to our other patient, Kathy Martin, who was wired up with her EEG as well, and we will be reporting on that in a future broadcast and e-letter.

 

A provocative question

This experiment should be regarded as posing many provocative questions. As always with the Intention Experiment, I continue to ask the most outlandish question of all: can a simple thought heal the world?  I will continue to be unafraid to ask that question, whatever the answer, with every future experiment. And with every answer – no matter what that is – we will continue learning and so will you. 

How to heal the planet: the power of mass intention

Since 2007 I have been asking a few seemingly stupid questions:  Can the thoughts you think about things actually change them?  And is the effect even greater if lots of people are thinking the same thought at the same time? Is it powerful enough, say, to heal another person – or even the world? 

 

                                                     

Since 2007 I have been asking a few seemingly stupid questions:  Can the thoughts you think about things actually change them?  And is the effect even greater if lots of people are thinking the same thought at the same time? Is it powerful enough, say, to heal another person – or even the world? 

 

To answer these questions, I enlisted a team of physicists, biologists, psychologists, statisticians and neuroscientists from prestigious international universities and, in total, several hundred thousand of my international readers to carry out 26 of the largest mind-over-matter experiments in history.  I’ve run experiments on leaves, plants, seeds, water, hotspots and now individuals in need of our help.

 

And now, after our first Healing Intention Experiment on a human being, I have my answer, which I’m going to share with you tomorrow.

 

Tomorrow, over a two-hour broadcast on Quantum TV, we will reveal the latest and possibly most ambitious of our experiments: to heal a Gulf and Afghanistan war veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. 

 

The Healing Intention Experiment, was double-blind, which means the neither the patients suffering from extreme anxiety nor the scientist himself studying them knew which patient we chose.  

 

Neuroscientist Dr. Jeffrey Fannin, a psychologist with expertise in ‘brain mapping’ states of mental disorder such as anxiety, depression or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, who organized the experiment, hooked up our two patients with an EEG machine and then monitored their brain waves plus the brain waves of one ‘intender’ sitting in another room, who would participate with us in sending intention to the chosen target.

 

Over the month since our experiment, he has monitored all three, clinically and through brain mapping. The results will blow your mind, as it did ours. We’re still reeling from the result.

 

On tomorrow’s show, you’ll have the opportunity to:

 

  • See a video of our target, Todd Voss, ‘before’, during  and ‘after’ the Experiment
  • Observe his brain patterns in real time during the Experiment
  • See Dr Fannin’s scientific findings
  • Find out what happened to many of our participants, who describe ecstatic, transcendent experiences of oneness, often life-transforming changes and personal healings
  • See one of the ‘intenders’ as he describes what happened to him
  • Join in with another Healing Intention Experiment to heal another patient with anxiety
  • Get to experience this transcendent moment (and even the chance to heal yourself)
  • Listen to Russian physicist Dr. Konstantin Korotkov, who has worked with me on a number of Intention Experiments
  • Ask questions of me, Dr. Fannin and Dr. Korotkov via the Quantum TV live chat, monitored by Quantum University’s Dr. Paul Drouin
  • Connect afterward with others to compare experience

 

It’s free to all, and this time we have a simpler entry system, to ensure that no one is locked out.

 

But you need to register: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment

 

If you have registered already, or did so for the April 26th experiment, you will automatically be sent a link to the program tomorrow, four hours before.  And do make sure to login early so we can fix things if you can’t get on.

 

Here are those times again.

 

The 2nd Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

7 am Hawaiian DST

10 am Pacific

12 pm Central

1 pm Eastern

6 pm UK summer time

7 pm rest of Europe

Register here: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment/

Join the next Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

Eight days and counting

Join the next Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

7 am Hawaiian DST

10 am Pacific

12 pm Central

1 pm Eastern

6 pm UK summer time

7 pm rest of Europe

Eight days and counting

Join the next Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

7 am Hawaiian DST

10 am Pacific

12 am Central

1 pm Eastern

6 pm UK summer time

7 pm rest of Europe

 

Register here: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment/

Just a gentle reminder not to miss this event, when you’ll have an opportunity to experience the ‘ecstasy of unity’ in being part of a collective consciousness for healing.  As one of our participants put it: ‘I'm happy, almost euphoric but no one else understands.’

The feedback we’re getting is that an overwhelming number of people who participated in The Healing Intention Experiment have experienced their own ecstatic experiences and indeed their own healings. 

Many wrote of an overwhelming feeling of oneness, a kind of God consciousness. As our participants describe it, it’s a bit like coming home.

‘At the onset of the 10 minutes I felt overwhelmed by love and was almost sobbing.’

For a good 5 minutes couldn't stop the tears,’ wrote Melissa. ‘Very connected to Todd.’

‘I was completely overwhelmed by so much love,’ wrote Karin. ‘I felt immense gratitude and tears just kept flowing. The energy kept flowing for hours and afterward I also slept peacefully. I felt deeply connected and at peace.’

‘You could feel the shift of the masses during the entire experiment,’ wrote Carl.

‘What I felt during this experience was so much connection I really saw a grid of light connecting dots all over the world,’ wrote Gabi.

 ‘Opened me up and felt so much love pouring out of me towards Todd. Tears fell down my cheeks within the first two minutes of the experiment,’ wrote Lauren. 

 ‘I was overwhelmed with love and tears and felt incredibly peaceful,’ wrote Elise, who participated at 3 am from Australia.  I’ felt cradled in energy and flowing through my tiredness.’

 ‘Todd Voss, I hear the name constantly in my mind, wrote Chris. ‘It's as if he has become part of me. More than a half a dozen times in the last 2 days I have found myself, thinking his name and about him.’

Many were shocked by the ‘borrowed benefit,’ as one participant put it, of sending intention:

 ‘My carpal tunnel injury improved,’ wrote Joan, ‘and I felt very relaxed. Even slept better.’

‘I suffered with my knee for almost 3 years,’ wrote another participant.  ‘After this experiment all the pain I used to have was gone, completely.’

Two participants who had issues with depression wrote: ‘The sadness has abated’ and  ‘it is all gone. 100%.’

 ‘ ‘I have a problem of pain in left arm and, it now seems ok.’

‘I woke up with a sudden lupus flare (right shoulder) on Monday morning – flare was gone by Thursday. Feel am now (finally) close to being truly healthy.

‘At the end of a busy day, my three week post-op knee was sore from use. . .  but I noticed it felt much better after the intention,’ wrote Monica from Perth.

Many have found that their lives have improved in general:

 ‘My life – everything about it – my health, relationships, outlook, energy level, happiness, openness, etc. just keep improving; I've plainly shifted.’

 ‘I'm getting along with my older sister and that never happens. It like her heart is softening or opening.’

‘I am more loving towards myself and I don´t criticize myself as hard as I used to. I am more forgiving towards others –I feel compassion towards others.’

‘I generally feel a greater connection to my fellow humans everywhere, and more accepting than judgmental.’

‘I am much more productive than I have been in the last 10 years and yet I am also more nurturing and caring towards myself. And my relationships have improved due to it or alongside this change in myself.’

 ‘I'm even more attuned to the suffering around me and finding it unbearable,’ wrote Sallie Lee. ‘Pulled out of my own petty concerns.’

Isn’t it time to be part of something bigger than yourself?  You’ll have another chance to experience the extraordinary power of intention.  It’s free to all.  If you didn’t register for the April 26 event, please just register now:

http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment

We will send you a link to the next event four hours beforehand. 

Experience the ecstasy of unity

Join the next Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

7 am Hawaiian DST

10 am Pacific

12 am Central

1 pm Eastern

6 pm UK summer time

7 pm rest of Europe

Join the next Healing Intention Experiment May 24, 2014

7 am Hawaiian DST

10 am Pacific

12 am Central

1 pm Eastern

6 pm UK summer time

7 pm rest of Europe

 

Register here: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment/

Just a gentle reminder not to miss this event, when you’ll have an opportunity to experience the ‘ecstasy of unity’ in being part of a collective consciousness for healing.  As one of our participants put it: ‘I'm happy, almost euphoric but no one else understands.’

The feedback we’re getting is that an overwhelming number of people who participated in The Healing Intention Experiment have experienced their own ecstatic experiences and indeed their own healings. 

Many wrote of an overwhelming feeling of oneness, a kind of God consciousness.

As our participants describe it, it’s a bit like coming home.

‘At the onset of the 10 minutes I felt overwhelmed by love and was almost sobbing.’

For a good 5 minutes couldn't stop the tears,’ wrote Melissa. ‘Very connected to Todd.’

‘I was completely overwhelmed by so much love,’ wrote Karin. ‘I felt immense gratitude and tears just kept flowing. The energy kept flowing for hours and afterward I also slept peacefully. I felt deeply connected and at peace.’

‘You could feel the shift of the masses during the entire experiment,’ wrote Carl.

‘What I felt during this experience was so much connection I really saw a grid of light connecting dots all over the world,’ wrote Gabi.

‘Opened me up and felt so much love pouring out of me towards Todd. Tears fell down my cheeks within the first two minutes of the experiment,’ wrote Lauren. 

‘I was overwhelmed with love and tears and felt incredibly peaceful,’ wrote Elise, who participated at 3 am from Australia.  I’ felt cradled in energy and flowing through my tiredness.’

 ‘Todd Voss, I hear the name constantly in my mind, wrote Chris. ‘It's as if he has become part of me. More than a half a dozen times in the last 2 days I have found myself, thinking his name and about him.’

Many were shocked by the ‘borrowed benefit,’ as one participant put it, of sending intention:

 ‘My carpal tunnel injury improved,’ wrote Joan, ‘and I felt very relaxed. Even slept better.’

‘I suffered with my knee for almost 3 years,’ wrote another participant.  ‘After this experiment all the pain I used to have was gone, completely.’

Two participants who had issues with depression wrote: ‘The sadness has abated’ and  ‘it is all gone. 100%.’

 ‘ ‘I have a problem of pain in left arm and, it now seems ok.’

‘I woke up with a sudden lupus flare (right shoulder) on Monday morning – flare was gone by Thursday. Feel am now (finally) close to being truly healthy.

‘At the end of a busy day, my three week post-op knee was sore from use. . .  but I noticed it felt much better after the intention,’ wrote Monica from Perth.

Many have found that their lives have improved in general:

 ‘My life – everything about it – my health, relationships, outlook, energy level, happiness, openness, etc. just keep improving; I've plainly shifted.’

 ‘I'm getting along with my older sister and that never happens. It like her heart is softening or opening.’

‘I am more loving towards myself and I don´t criticize myself as hard as I used to. I am more forgiving towards others –I feel compassion towards others.’

‘I generally feel a greater connection to my fellow humans everywhere, and more accepting than judgmental.’

‘I am much more productive than I have been in the last 10 years and yet I am also more nurturing and caring towards myself. And my relationships have improved due to it or alongside this change in myself.’

 ‘I'm even more attuned to the suffering around me and finding it unbearable,’ wrote Sallie Lee. ‘Pulled out of my own petty concerns.’

Isn’t it time to be part of something bigger than yourself?  You’ll have another chance to experience the extraordinary power of intention.  It’s free to all.  If you didn’t register for the April 26 event, please just register now:

http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment

We will send you a link to the next event four hours beforehand.

 

HAS YOUR LIFE CHANGED SINCE THE HEALING INTENTION EXPERIMENT?

Tell me how it was for you and join in with the next Healing Intention Experiment on May 24

 

Hundreds of people from 95 countries are writing in with incredible stories to tell about how participating in the Healing Intention Experiment on April 26 changed their lives in some profound way. Many people with intractable long-term health challenges say their conditions are better or completely resolved.  One of our participants healed her relationship with her husband.  Others have completely changed their outlook. 

 

Tell me how it was for you and join in with the next Healing Intention Experiment on May 24

Hundreds of people from 95 countries are writing in with incredible stories to tell about how participating in the Healing Intention Experiment on April 26 changed their lives in some profound way. Many people with intractable long-term health challenges say their conditions are better or completely resolved.  One of our participants healed her relationship with her husband.  Others have completely changed their outlook. 

I see this response so often that I am forced to conclude that there is some sort of Rebound Effect that occurs in the act of a mass group healing.  A virtuous circle gets established and the healers are themselves healed. 

 

Many others experienced what I can only describe as an ‘ecstasy of unity’ – they were overwhelmed with a palpable sense of oneness, as though they are experiencing The Field for the first time.

 

Part of my work in documenting the effects of intention is to study the effects on the participants themselves.  For any of you who participated in the event I would be extremely grateful if you would fill out a short survey.  This gives me more information to demonstate, once and for all, that these effects are real and not ‘New Age woo-woo’ as they are often disparagingly referred to. 

 

I’ll also report back to you with the results of the survey as soon as I’ve received your responses so  you can compare what has happened to you with the experiences of all of our participants.

 

Please take just a few minutes to tell me how the experiment went for you and if your life has changed in any way – for better or worse. And if you tried but were unable to get into the experiment, there’s a place on the survey to tell me about that too:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/SJ852PN 

 

The Second Healing Intention Experiment

Now all of you will have a second chance to taste the extraordinary power of intention because we’re running another Healing Experiment  -  this time on May 24 at the same time (10 am US Pacific). 

And the good news is that Quantum TV have simplified the entry mechanism to eliminate the logjam that occurred last time around, and I am assured that all of you will be able to get in immediately. 

 

Once you register, you will be sent email confirmation.  Four hours before the broadcast you will be sent a web TV link. You will not have to sign in to get to the broadcast.  If you already registered for the April 24 event, you don’t need to register again.

 

If you haven’t, register here: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment/

 

Here’s what we have lined up:

  1. 1)The results of our April 26 experiment in healing Gulf War vet ToddTodd suffers from PTSD and we sent intention to lower his anxiety.  Neuroscientist Dr Jeffrey Fannin who has been treating him will describe any changes, show you evidence on EEG brain maps and show a video of Todd himself.

 

  1. 2)Another extraordinary chance to heal another person with a documented medicalYou’ll get a chance to hear her story and you’ll be able to observe the effects of your intention on special EEG brain mapping equipment at the moments you are sending intention.  .
  2. 3)Russian physicist Konstantin Korotkov measuring the ‘Field effects’ of our group intention with his GDV equipement, which you will be able to see on the screen.

 

  1. 4)

 

  1. 5)The opportunity, via the chat room, to make comments and ask me and the scientist questions after the

 

Once again, you and the rest of the worldwide audience of participants will be able observe the power of their thoughts in real time.

 

We’ll be again making use of a ‘split screen’ so you’ll be able to see me, as I lead you through the experiment, see the scientist who will be running the experiment and monitoring the results, see our target person  and see any changes in him or her exactly as they are happening! 

 

So now here’s what you have to do to participate in every way:
1. Answer the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/SJ852PN 

 

2. Register (and do so TODAY).  If you already registered for April 24 and received something from Quantum TV about links beforehand, you don’t have to register again.  If you didn’t, please do so TODAY:   Expect an email from them before the event and look out for a link on Saturday May 24 four hours before the event.

 

So please don’t forget to sign up TODAY (completely free to everyone) and to show up tomorrow shortly
before 10 am Pacific time: http://quantumworld.tv/second-intention-experiment

  

Our Healing Intention Experiment: healing trauma after war

Dear Readers,

Last week we ran the historic Healing Intention Experiment, with participants from 94 countries around the globe.  Our target was a  two-times US veteran, who fought in both the Gulf War and Afghanistan, and who has suffered extreme anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder ever since.  Working with Dr. Jeffrey Fannin, an expert in neuroscientist expert in EEG mind mapping of brain waves, we were able to see in real time the effect on our target person’s brain as we send intention to calm him down and end his anxiety.  We also had a ‘control,’ a person with extreme anxiety who wasn’t sent intention but whose brain waves were mapped as well.  Neither party knew who was getting the intention.

Dear Readers,

Last week we ran the historic Healing Intention Experiment, with participants from 94 countries around the globe.  Our target was a  two-times US veteran, who fought in both the Gulf War and Afghanistan, and who has suffered extreme anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder ever since.  Working with Dr. Jeffrey Fannin, an expert in neuroscientist expert in EEG mind mapping of brain waves, we were able to see in real time the effect on our target person’s brain as we send intention to calm him down and end his anxiety.  We also had a ‘control,’ a person with extreme anxiety who wasn’t sent intention but whose brain waves were mapped as well.  Neither party knew who was getting the intention.

Dr. Fannin is in the process of number crunching and assessing both our participants, plus a third volunteer whose brain waves were monitored while he was sending intention, so we can examine what goes on in the brain of an ‘intender.’

Thanks to the technical expertise of Quantum University, the production was highly sophisticated.  Viewers were able to see multiple split screens of me directing the intention, Dr. Fannin, our target person and his brain waves – all in real time. 

However, because of the sheer number of people wishing to participate from 94 countries around the globe, some people had difficulty logging to the Quantum University site.

In case you’re one of those who was unable to log in this first time around, you’ll have another opportunity to experience the extraordinary and palpable feeling of oneness that occurs during these mass intentions. 

I’m thrilled to announce that we’ve decided to run another Healing Intention Experiment during the broadcast when we announce the results of this first one. 

We’ve moved our results date to Saturday, May 24 at 10 am Pacific to allow more people to attend.  We’ll have an open live stream on the day so we won’t experience the logjam we had this first time around.

Plus, this time, Russian physicist Dr. Konstantin Korotkov of St. Petersburg State University will be measuring the effect of our Intentions and group consciousness with his special equipment.

So stay tuned for all instructions. And if you were one of the people who was able to participate last Saturday, next week I will be sending a survey out for you to fill out to find out what has happened to you ever since.

Inventing the problem

Economist John Kenneth Galbraith was one of the first to identify ‘revised-sequence’ markets which, unlike the ordinary consumer-driven variety, are driven by a corporation, which controls the consumer’s attitudes and values and so creates product demand. Or, to put it more simply, they invent the problem to sell the solution.

 Economist John Kenneth Galbraith was one of the first to identify ‘revised-sequence’ markets which, unlike the ordinary consumer-driven variety, are driven by a corporation, which controls the consumer’s attitudes and values and so creates product demand. Or, to put it more simply, they invent the problem to sell the solution.

As American political activist Ralph Nader once remarked, “In any industry, the sellers become very acute in appealing to those features of a human personality that are easiest to exploit. Everyone knows what they are. It’s easiest to exploit a person’s sense of fear . . .”

 

Drug companies are past masters at this, particularly when it comes to women after the menopause. Through advertising and information drip-fed to the charities they support, Big Pharma has managed to convince every woman over 45 that with middle age and the end of her childbearing comes the inevitable collapse of her bones. Allow menopause to unfold without medical intervention and you face becoming a humpbacked old dowager in your declining years—with a potentially deadly hip fracture to boot. 

 

Consequently, the medical profession has drummed into women that they can only look forward to healthy old age and strong bones by constantly monitoring bone loss with X-rays and taking some sort of medicine—hormones or drugs like bisphosphonates—to stave off the inevitable.

 

Tell this to my friend Shelly Lefkoe. Shelly was playing Scrabble with a friend at Starbucks one day in 2006.  She’d dropped a few tiles, and was leaning over a chair to pick them up when she heard a tiny ‘crack, crack.’ Later that day she felt a sharp stab in her chest. When her doctor investigated, he discovered that she’d fractured two ribs. 

 

The news came as a shock because Shelly was just 56, and no stranger to healthy, active living. She ate healthy organic food, lifted weights regularly at the gym, attended aerobics classes regularly and even took weekly ballroom dancing lessons with her husband Morty.

 

She consulted a doctor of osteopathy, who ordered a DXA scan to examine the density of her bones. Shelly was in for another shock when he delivered the diagnosis. Her scores showed she didn’t even have the precursor osteopenia, but full-blown osteoporosis. Just a few years into the menopause, her bones were paper-thin, he said, and at high risk of future, more serious, fractures.

 

At first Shelly found it hard to believe. There was no osteoporosis in her immediate family. Her mother in her late 80s didn’t have it and neither did her father. Her only risk factor was the fact that she’d recently gone on a diet and lost weight.

 

 “You have to go on Fosamax long-term,” osteopath told her. “My wife is on it.  It’s your only option.”

 

“I’m not doing it,” she replied. Shelly, a tough-minded New York transplant originally from Brooklyn, had given birth to her two children without so much as an aspirin, and she’d managed her menopause with just the help of a few herbs like black cohosh, and no hormone replacement.

 

It made no sense, in her mind, to take a drug as a just-in-case measure. And when it came to setbacks, she is, as she put it, “a samurai warrior”, determined not to give up until she’d exhausted every possibility.

 

After her diagnosis of osteoporosis, friends referred her to a certified nutritionist, who also has a background in chemistry. The nutritionist told Shelly that most people mistakenly believe that bones just need calcium, but many other minerals, including magnesium, potassium and silica, are just as important. She encouraged Shelly to eat plenty of greens, especially spinach, which is rich in potassium, and to regularly consume homemade bone broth made from organic meat bones/

She also put Shelly on a protocol of supplements that included fish oils, multivitamins, full-spectrum minerals, including strontium as a supplement (not the drug), plus coenzyme Q10, vitamin K and vitamin D. Shelly made her own homemade bone stock in large batches. 

 

Shelly also worked with a trainer to increase her exercise regime. She worked with a trainer who designed a more aggressive weight-lifting routine, which she carried out three times a week before a yoga class. She also attended aerobics classes four or five times a week and continued her weekly dance class.

 

Slowly but surely she worked up to her present level, using free weights for bicep presses and  tricep presses, heavier weights for chest presses and a 30-lb bar for the ‘skull-crusher’ life.  She also carrie
d out a good deal of Pilates-style core work and made use of an elliptical training machine.

 

After two years of carrying out her exercise and nutritional regime, Shelly had a repeat scan, which showed an increase in bone density, placing her closer to the category of borderline osteopenia. 

 

Her last scan, taken in 2012 when she was 62, showed that her bones had strengthened to the point where she registered as ‘low normal’ on the DXA scale. 

 

Shelly believes that besides the protocol designed by her nutritionist, of equal importance was her belief that it would work—a belief bolstered by the support of her husband and their years of working together on the Lefkoe Method, which aims to change the entrenched and self-destructive beliefs of their clients (www.mortylefkoe.com).

 

“Morty never had any doubt—he believed with all his heart that it would work and without medication,” she says. “Your belief and a fighting spirit are essential.”

 

No drugs. No life-long problem. Just good food, a large helping of grit  - and the power of intention.

Collective thoughts that heal

Last week, I was reading about a remarkable study carried out by Harvard University, as detailed in Dr. Joe Dispenza’s fascinating new book You are the Placebo.

Last week, I was reading about a remarkable study carried out by Harvard University, as detailed in Dr. Joe Dispenza’s fascinating new book You are the Placebo.

In 1981, eight men in their 70s and 80s attended a five-day retreat at a monastery in Peterborough, New Hampshire, organized by Harvard University, where they were asked to pretend that they were 22 years younger than their present age. 

When they got there, they discovered constant reminders of two decades previously: old issues of Life magazine and the Saturday Evening Post, shows on TV that had been popular in the late 50s, radios playing Perry Como and Nat King Cole.  The men were asked to discuss events that had been current two decades before: Fidel Castro’s sudden ascendancy to power in Cuba, Nikita Khrushchev’s stand-off with Eisenhower in a US meeting, homeruns hit by Mickey Mantle and knock-out punches by Floyd Patterson. This carried on throughout the five days of the retreat.

 

After the retreat ended, the researchers took the same physiological measurements they’d carried out at start of the study and discovered that the men actually had grown ‘taller’; they showed improved height, weight and gait, their postured straightened, their joints had become more flexible, their hearing, eyesight, grip strength, memory and general mental cognition had all improved. 

 

In fact, by the end of the five days, many of these octogenarians had given up their canes and were playing touch football.

 

Once they’d been reminded of their younger selves, their bodies actually became younger – and all in less than a week. ‘The change wasn’t just in their minds,’ wrote Dispenza, ‘it was also in their bodies.’

 

The conventional view is that our genetic destiny is fixed and inherent in our DNA, which selectively turn on and off certain genes. These genetic instructions make copies of themselves—as messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) molecules, which choose from an alphabet of amino acids to create the approximately 150,000 proteins in the body that carry out its myriad functions.

Cellular informational commands have always been thought to flow in a single direction—from DNA and mRNA to the selected combinations of amino acids and assemblies of proteins. Until recently, scientists maintained that gene activity was a closed-off process that took place independently of the environment.

As new research decisively demonstrates, genes, far from being the central controller, exist purely as potentials— to be activated (or not) by signals outside the body, much as a piano is silent until someone sits down to play it.

An environmental signal of some kind outside the cell alerts the DNA that a particular protein product is needed, activating a particular genetic expression pattern.

Genes work as a collective and get turned on, turned off or modified by our environment: what we eat, who we surround ourselves with, and how we lead our lives.

In fact, new evidence shows that gene expression changes from moment to moment, according to the food you eat, the water you drink the emotional climate within your family, the state of your relationships, your sense of fulfilment in lifethe sum total of how you live your life.

For instance, heart specialist Dr. Dean Ornish discovered that a group of men with prostate cancer were able to change more than 500 genes relating to tumour suppression and promotion simply by altering their diet and lifestyle. 

But the thoughts you think may have the greatest influence of all in turning our genetic coding on and off.

One Japanese study of diabetics discovered that they ‘turned on’ some 39 genes, 14 of them related to natural killer cell activity, just by watching one hour-long comedy video.

One of the greatest of environmental switches may be the quality of our social Bond. A group of psychologists at Northwestern University were examining the effect of social grouping on genetically inherited predisposition to depression.

 

In a nutshell, they found that Westerners define themselves by their individuality, while Easterners in collectivistic societies define themselves by the extent of their acceptance within a group, and place higher value on social harmony rather than individuality.

 

When studying the population of East Asia the research team made an unexpected discovery: the tighter knit the population, the higher percentage of the people who carried the gene for depression. According to the current genetic theory of depression, correspondingly high levels of depression should exist among these populations.

 

Instead, the researchers found the opposite: among these highly susceptible populations, the actual prevalence of depression was significantly lower than that of Western Europe or America.

 

The expectation of social support in these highly collectivist cultures seemed to buffer people from any environmental stressors that should have triggered depression. Even genetically inherited depression could be controlled by a social switch. 

 

So my next question is:  if our thoughts can make us younger, or improve our diabetes or even prevent us from getting depressed, can the thoughts outside ourself heal us?  What happens when a group of people are ‘intending’ for us to heal?

 

You and I will find the answer to this question after  April 25, when we’ll be running our next Intention Experiment: The Healing Intention Experiment.

 

This experiment represents the first time we will be trying to heal an individual, and also the first time we’ll be working with Quantum TV to run the experiment through international web television, and you are all invited to participate.  Please just write down the date and time NOW:

 

 

The Healing Intention Experiment

26 April 2014

 

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12 noon Central DST

1 pm Eastern DST

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All other time zones, please use this website to convert 6 pm British Summer Time into your time zone: http://www.timezoneconverter.com/cgi-bin/tzc.tzc

 

And keep reading these pages, when I’ll give you more information about signing in.

Don’t tell me the likely outcome

Lately I’ve been working with a new chiropractor group to help me change the shape of my spine (I’d like a correct a slight curvature, caused in part by the occupational hazard of my profession, with its requirement of long hours at a computer).

 

Lately I’ve been working with a new chiropractor group to help me change the shape of my spine (I’d like a correct a slight curvature, caused in part by the occupational hazard of my profession, with its requirement of long hours at a computer).

 

During our first visit, the chiropractor began to detail what he thought was possible and what not, and as a Canadian, used to litigious North America, he’d been trained not to inflate the likely outcome. Nevertheless, when he began saying what might not be possible, I stopped him in his tracks.

 

‘Let’s agree not to voice any limits on the outcome,’ I told him. ‘You and I can’t know the final result, and I don’t want to think about anything less than an ideal spine.’ Now that he knows me, I think I’ve now convinced him not to say one more negative word.

 

Essentially, I wanted a diagnosis but not a prognosis for the simple reason that I don’t want to be infected by any limiting beliefs. Medical scientists often speak of the ‘placebo effect’ as an annoying impediment to the proof of the efficacy of a chemical agent. To me, the placebo effect is the entire point of the exercise. Repeatedly, the mind has proved to be a far more powerful healer than the greatest of breakthrough drugs.

 

Take the case of Frank, who attended a talk of mine the other evening, where he told me the following story. Frank had been diagnosed with a tumor on his liver. He was in the hospital the night before, getting prepped for his operation to remove the tumour the following day. 

 

That night, unable to sleep, he read my book The Bond.  Something in the book, which is about the power of connection, spoke to something deep inside him, and he stayed up all night, reading the book in its entirety. That morning, he was given anesthesia in readiness for the surgery, but when he regained consciousness, the surgeon told him that he’d not had to perform any surgery. When he’d opened Frank up, the tumor that had been so clear on imaging beforehand  had somehow disappeared. 

 

Now, I want to make it clear nothing I wrote ‘did’ this. Something in my book 'spoke' to Frank in such a self-empowering way that it galvanized his body’s own potential to heal. All my book did was act, in a way, like a placebo – a talisman that gave Frank permission to heal.

 

The placebo is a form of intention – an instance of intention trickery. When a doctor gives a patient a placebo, or sugar pill, he or she is counting on the patient’s belief that the drug will work. It is well documented that belief in a placebo will create the same physiological effects as that of an active agent – so much so that it causes the pharmaceutical industry enormous difficulty when designing drug trials. So many patients receive the same relief and even the same side effects with a placebo as with the drug itself that a placebo is not a true control.

 

Our bodies do not distinguish between a chemical process and the thought of a chemical process. Indeed, a recent analysis of 46,000 heart patients, half of whom were taking a placebo, made the astonishing discovery that patients taking a placebo fared as well as those on the heart drug. The only factor determining survival seemed to be belief that the therapy will work and a willingness to follow it religiously.

 

Those who stuck to doctor’s orders to take their drug three times a day fared equally well whether they were taking a drug or just a sugar pill. Patients who tended not to survive were those who had been lax with their regimen, regardless of whether they had been given a placebo or an actual drug (British Medical Journal, 2006; 333: 15-9).

 

In another dramatic instance, at Methodist Hospital in Houston, Dr Bruce Moseley, a specialist in orthopadics, recruited 150 patients with severe osteoarthritis of the knee and divided them into three groups. Two-thirds were either given arthroscopic lavage (which washes out degenerative tissue and debris with the aid of a little viewing tube) or another form of debridement (which sucks it out with a tiny vacuum cleaner).

 

The third group were given a sham operation: The patients were surgically prepared, placed under anaesthesia and wheeled into the operating room. Incisions were made in their knees, but no procedure carried out.

 

Over the next two years, during which time none of the patients knew who had received the real operations and who had received the placebo treatment, all three groups reported moderate improvements in pain and function. In fact, the placebo group reported better results than some who had received the actual operation (New England Journal of Medicine, 2002; 347: 81–88)

 

The mental expectation of healing was enough to marshal the body’s healing mechanisms. The intention, brought about by the expectation of a successful operation, produced the physical change.

 

But it works the other way, too. One British fellow in his mid-fifties was being treated by the department of hematology at his local hospital with a history of a highly benign form of leukemia, for which he only occasionally required small doses of drugs.  He’d never been told the true nature of his condition and over the next couple of years remained well, with his blood profile stable. Although he was ordinarily quite punctilious about attending his outpatient clinics, one day he never showed up, and only later turned up on a surgical ward in a highly neglected state. 

 

It turned out that a few days before he’d looked over his doctor’s shoulder at his case notes and seen the word ‘leukemia.’ From there he went rapidly downhill and in three weeks he was dead, even though his blood count was unchanged.  None of his doctors or even the pathologists conducting his autopsy could find any biological cause for his rapid decline. 

 

This man died of a medical label and the association with it: ‘incurable cancerous disease’. He died of the wrong thoughts.  So like Frank, when I’m having treatment, I want to open my thoughts to the pure potential of healing. And I know that thoughts, ultimately, are my best medicine.

Don’t tell me the likely outcome

Lately I’ve been working with a new chiropractor group to help me change the shape of my spine (I’d like a correct a slight curvature, caused in part by the occupational hazard of my profession, with its requirement of long hours at a computer).

 Lately I’ve been working with a new chiropractor group to help me change the shape of my spine (I’d like a correct a slight curvature, caused in part by the occupational hazard of my profession, with its requirement of long hours at a computer).

During our first visit, the chiropractor began to detail what he thought was possible and what not, and as a Canadian, used to litigious North America, he’d been trained not to inflate the likely outcome. Nevertheless, when he began saying what might not be possible, I stopped him in his tracks.

 

‘Let’s agree not to voice any limits on the outcome,’ I told him. ‘You and I can’t know the final result, and I don’t want to think about anything less than an ideal spine.’ Now that he knows me, I think I’ve now convinced him not to say one more negative word.

 

Essentially, I wanted a diagnosis but not a prognosis for the simple reason that I don’t want to be infected by any limiting beliefs. Medical scientists often speak of the ‘placebo effect’ as an annoying impediment to the proof of the efficacy of a chemical agent. To me, the placebo effect is the entire point of the exercise. Repeatedly, the mind has proved to be a far more powerful healer than the greatest of breakthrough drugs.

 

Take the case of Frank, who attended a talk of mine the other evening, where he told me the following story. Frank had been diagnosed with a tumor on his liver. He was in the hospital the night before, getting prepped for his operation to remove the tumour the following day. 

 

That night, unable to sleep, he read my book The Bond.  Something in the book, which is about the power of connection, spoke to something deep inside him, and he stayed up all night, reading the book in its entirety. That morning, he was given anesthesia in readiness for the surgery, but when he regained consciousness, the surgeon told him that he’d not had to perform any surgery. When he’d opened Frank up, the tumor that had been so clear on imaging beforehand  had somehow disappeared. 

 

Now, I want to make it clear nothing I wrote ‘did’ this. Something in my book 'spoke' to Frank in such a self-empowering way that it galvanized his body’s own potential to heal. All my book did was act, in a way, like a placebo – a talisman that gave Frank permission to heal.

 

The placebo is a form of intention – an instance of intention trickery. When a doctor gives a patient a placebo, or sugar pill, he or she is counting on the patient’s belief that the drug will work. It is well documented that belief in a placebo will create the same physiological effects as that of an active agent – so much so that it causes the pharmaceutical industry enormous difficulty when designing drug trials. So many patients receive the same relief and even the same side effects with a placebo as with the drug itself that a placebo is not a true control.

 

Our bodies do not distinguish between a chemical process and the thought of a chemical process. Indeed, a recent analysis of 46,000 heart patients, half of whom were taking a placebo, made the astonishing discovery that patients taking a placebo fared as well as those on the heart drug. The only factor determining survival seemed to be belief that the therapy will work and a willingness to follow it religiously.

 

Those who stuck to doctor’s orders to take their drug three times a day fared equally well whether they were taking a drug or just a sugar pill. Patients who tended not to survive were those who had been lax with their regimen, regardless of whether they had been given a placebo or an actual drug (British Medical Journal, 2006; 333: 15-9).

 

In another dramatic instance, at Methodist Hospital in Houston, Dr Bruce Moseley, a specialist in orthopadics, recruited 150 patients with severe osteoarthritis of the knee and divided them into three groups. Two-thirds were either given arthroscopic lavage (which washes out degenerative tissue and debris with the aid of a little viewing tube) or another form of debridement (which sucks it out with a tiny vacuum cleaner).

 

The third group were given a sham operation: The patients were surgically prepared, placed under anaesthesia and wheeled into the operating room. Incisions were made in their knees, but no procedure carried out.

 

Over the next two years, during which time none of the patients knew who had received the real operations and who had received the placebo treatment, all three groups reported moderate improvements in pain and function. In fact, the placebo group reported better results than some who had received the actual operation (New England Journal of Medicine, 2002; 347: 81–88)

 

The mental expectation of healing was enough to marshal the body’s healing mechanisms. The intention, brought about by the expectation of a successful operation, produced the physical change.

 

But it works the other way, too. One British fellow in his mid-fifties was being treated by the department of hematology at his local hospital with a history of a highly benign form of leukemia, for which he only occasionally required small doses of drugs.  He’d never been told the true nature of his condition and over the next couple of years remained well, with his blood profile stable. Although he was ordinarily quite punctilious about attending his outpatient clinics, one day he never showed up, and only later turned up on a surgical ward in a highly neglected state. 

 

It turned out that a few days before he’d looked over his doctor’s shoulder at his case notes and seen the word ‘leukemia.’ From there he went rapidly downhill and in three weeks he was dead, even though his blood count was unchanged.  None of his doctors or even the pathologists conducting his autopsy could find any biological cause for his rapid decline. 

 

This man died of a medical label and the association with it: ‘incurable cancerous disease’. He died of the wrong thoughts.  So like Frank, when I’m having treatment, I want to open my thoughts to the pure potential of healing. And I know that thoughts, ultimately, are my best medicine.

Thoughts that beat cancer

If you think there is a limit to the power of thought, consider the case of David Passmore, who was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer around his groin area 30 years ago. His oncologist’s prognosis was grim. David had an advanced cancer that would eventually kill him unless he immediately started a course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, the doctor told him.

 If you think there is a limit to the power of thought, consider the case of David Passmore, who was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer around his groin area 30 years ago. His oncologist’s prognosis was grim. David had an advanced cancer that would eventually kill him unless he immediately started a course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, the doctor told him.

How would you respond in that situation?  Would you have the nerve to refuse his treatment and use your own resources—primarily the power of your own mind and thoughts—to heal yourself? And not just once, but twice?

 

That’s precisely what David did.  “Against all considered opinion, I refused to take any treatment. The doctor was aghast as no patient of his had declined to do as prescribed,” said David.

 

So alarmed was the doctor by David’s wish to handle his own cancer that he referred him to Professor Timothy McElwain, a celebrated oncologist based at the Royal Marsden, who demanded to know on their first meeting why on earth David would refuse the best treatment available.

“I told him that I wanted to learn more about the disease. I would alter my diet and lifestyle considerably. I would continue my regular martial-arts training and exercise, and I would meditate on the subject,” said David.

David believed he knew why it had happened. He’d been working night and day on his successful media business and spending the few leisure hours he had left building a national network of Japanese martial-arts centres. “I was completely taken up with the peripheral stuff in my life,” he said, and ignoring its center: his wife and three children, as well as his own physical and spiritual nourishment.

“When I was diagnosed, I was just angry with myself. I knew immediately that it was my responsibility, and chemotherapy wasn’t going to solve it.”

 

Prof McElwain’s credulity was stretched to the limit by the thought that David was suggesting that he could ‘meditate’ his cancer away, but he was experienced enough to recognize strong resolve when confronted with it. He agreed to support this bizarre alternative regime, with one proviso: immediately report to him any sudden tiredness or weight loss.  

 

David returned to his home in the New Forest in Britain, and for the first five days he fasted and meditated, then got hold of images of the lymph system from some old medical textbooks.  “I started to visualize clusters of cancer cells in the lymph glands—I knew my affected glands were in my neck and arms—and I willed the areas to be well and free of disease.”

He also used every spare minute—when he was on the train or driving—to do ‘conscious breathing’—deep breaths just two or three times a minute—took mega-doses of vitamin C and starting reading some old books of his on spirituality.

“My senses began to change, my eyes saw the same things more vividly, my taste became more discerning, my hearing more acute,” said David.

 

This ‘brain training’ began to change his thoughts and intentions about his life and give him greater balance. “I began to simplify my life and to engage with my children, family and friends in a different and more meaningful way.’


Recently, at the age of 67 David faced an even bigger challenge when he was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer. This time, his doctor was even more emphatic about the need for orthodox treatment.  He urgently needed an operation, radiotherapy—the works. 

 

Once again, David refused. Although his diet had been pristine, he believed there was more inner work to do.  He began long and powerful sessions of meditation and intention with visualization, to imagine, in exquisite detail, his body being free of the cancer.

 

Recently, when he had his latest PSA test, the score, which had been so elevated, was close to normal.

 

‘What on earth are you doing to treat this cancer?’ his astonished doctor said when he read the report.

 

‘Meditating,’ David replied.

 

The doctor looked baffled, then shook his head. “Wow,” he said. “That’s some powerful medicine.”

Healing: why nothing applies

Lately, with all the comment on these pages about energy medicine, and how one form of energy medicine might be superior to another form, it started me meditating on the nature of healing itself.

Lately, with all the comment on these pages about energy medicine, and how one form of energy medicine might be superior to another form, it started me meditating on the nature of healing itself.

Healing of whatever variety through whatever means is an alchemical process – nothing less than a mystical bond between healer and healee.

 

And the most important aspect of it is that . . . nothing universally applies. While many old and new forms of healing work fantastically well, as any healer will tell you, nothing is 100 per cent.

 

No one can say with any certainty how you will respond to your illness or guarantee the success of a given treatment, and no one modality can work for everyone. What works for me may not work for you.

 

Herbs work well for my husband Bryan, but not for me; I do best with energy medicine, old and new. I never get jet lag, thanks to a homeopathic combination remedy; Bryan always does, even after taking the remedy. The trick is to find the system of medicine that will work for you. And a key component is the fact that you believe that it is going to work.

 

University of Arizona psychologist Gary Schwartz and his fellow researchers once carried out a double-blind study of distant Johrei healing on cardiac patients. After three days, the patients were asked if they had believed that they had received Johrei healing. In both the treatment and control groups, certain patients strongly believed that they had received the treatment and others had a strong feeling they’d been excluded.

 

When Schwartz tabulated the results, he discovered the best outcomes were among those who had received Johrei and believed they had received it. The worse outcomes were those who had not received Johrei and were convinced they had not had it. The other two groups – those who had received it but did not believe it and those who had not received it but believed they had – fell somewhere in the middle.

 

This result tended to contradict the idea that a positive outcome is entirely down to a placebo response; those who wrongly believed they received the healing did not do as well as those who rightly believed they had received it.

 

Schwartz’s studies uncovered something fundamental about the nature of healing: not simply the energy and intention of the healing itself but also the patient’s belief that he or she had received healing and belief in the particular treatment itself promoted the actual healing.

 

I see this with a friend of mine, who has had advanced disseminated breast cancer for about 12 years.  She is a staunch believer in conventional medicine and during the entire course of her illness has had nine courses of chemotherapy – far more than her even her doctors believe any person should be able to withstand.  Nevertheless, it is precisely that strong belief in her doctors and their medicine that has kept her alive for years past every medical prediction, and is likely to see her through to her children’s majority.

 

The practitioner may act as an energetic metronome to remind the healee what it is to be well, and his own state of health may be an essential factor in his ability to heal. Schwartz did other studies examining how effective Reiki healers were in healing heat-shocked bacteria, and discovered on days when the healers felt really well in themselves, they had a beneficial effect, but on days when they did not feel so well, they actually killed off more bacteria than naturally died in the controls.

 

The other vital component is the connection between healer and healee. The late psychologist Jeanne Achterberg of the Institute for Transpersonal Psychology in California carried out a study, using highly experienced distant healers, whose ‘patient,’ placed in an isolated room, was a person with whom they had a special connection.  At random intervals, the healers sent healing intentions to their patients, using their own traditional healing practices, and via MRI scanners Achterberg discovered significant brain activation in the same portions of the brains of all the patients during times healing energy was being ‘sent’. When the same regime was tried out on people the healers did not know, they had no effect on the patients’ brain activity. 

 

What all this means is that healing ultimately is a mystery just as birth itself is a mystery – placing oneself in a trusted place with a trusted midwife and giving oneself permission to allow in the entry of a new life. Hence why, to my mind, there is no one ‘best’ approach for everyone, no ‘superior’ new energy technique over another. Nothing universally applies. No one can predict with any certainty how a given patient till respond to the challenge of illness or say with certainty who will live and who will die.

The best we can do is carry out undoctored research on the tools we have to hand, catalogue the best outc
omes, present patients with a host of the best possibilities, and allow them to design their own mystery.

 

The world’s most powerful healer

This week Bryan and I were witness to a miracle, the miracle of our daughter’s own body potentially healing the unhealable – with the help of a miracle in cutting-edge medicine.

This week Bryan and I were witness to a miracle, the miracle of our daughter’s own body potentially healing the unhealable – with the help of a miracle in cutting-edge medicine.

As many of you may remember, our youngest daughter Anya, just 16 at the time, was injured a year ago in a ferocious hockey game and entirely ruptured her anterior cruciate ligament, the one between the thigh and shin bones mostly responsible for allowing the knee to pivot and twist.  This is a catastrophic injury because conventional medicine has no satisfactory solution.

The British orthopedic surgeon we consulted urged us to have reconstructive surgery immediately, which entails taking a bit of her hamstring, fashioning it into a Frankenstein ligament, screwing that into her bones and hoping it takes. 

As we are no strangers to medical literature, we examined all the studies about the success of this particular operation.  Some patients – including one of our middle-aged friends – do brilliantly, and return to all sporting activities with the same ability they had prior to injury. 

The vast majority do not.  Many require multiple revision surgery.  Most lose 20 per cent of their hamstring strength. Others suffer constant pain, and although we were warned that Anya might suffer arthritis if we left things alone, studies examining patients having the surgery versus those who don’t conclude that knees left alone fare just as well as those undergoing surgery. In fact one study carried out by a major American orthopaedic medical body concluded that patients undergoing reconstructive surgery actually do worse in the long run with a greater likelihood of developing arthritis 10 years after surgery than those who just live with the injury. 

With reconstructive surgery, there is no way that doctors can guarantee that the new ligament will react in the same way as the old one – it can be too tight, too loose or have different load-bearing capabilities.  Then there were all the things that could go wrong:  the hamstring ligament is often put in the wrong angle, restricting movement and possibly, in my daughter’s case, inhibiting growth. 

Clearly, in our view, this was not even the court of last resort, as she was in no pain, moving normally, and able to do everything easily except jumping and pivoting.

At first we tried a course of prolotherapy – the best option available to us in Britain, which tends to favour the traditional reconstructive approach. The 10 injections plus exercise strengthened the knee so considerably that Anya was running and resuming normal exercise.  Her physio recommended that she attempt a trial of hockey training.  Last August, after several days of too enthusiastic training, she injured herself again – this time tearing her posterior cruciate ligament and the meniscus, the spongy tissue lining the knee. 

Anya was consigned to the bench and we to the drawing board, trying to figure out what reasonable options were left to us. 

I began investigating doctors in the US who are using the patient’s own stem cells to heal orthopedic damage.  After interviewing five doctors around the US expert in this procedure, I settled on a clinic that pioneered a method of extracting the patient’s own fat or bone marrow stem cells plus blood platelets.  I preferred them because among all the doctors carrying out this procedure, they were the first; they’d been doing it longest (10 years), they’d collected and publishing the results of their work and they were tracking all their patients.

On February 11, last week, Anya, Bryan and I flew to the States.

It required a good deal of courage on my daughter’s part, who endured giant needles, a hammering into her hip bones to extract bone marrow, and multiple blood extraction and injections over the eight days  of the procedure. On the first day, the doctors examined her with both ultrasound and an arthroscopy (which entails injecting a 6-inch needle with a camera attached inside the knee to see what is going on), an exam that confirmed all the injuries and showed that the ACL, in two pieces and very far apart, was beyond non-operative repair. 

Nevertheless, our doctor, a sport specialist as well as an orthopedic surgeon, had handled a number of athletes in a similar situation and stabilized their knees by strengthening the knee’s capsule, a ligament that encircles the knee.  Largely because Anya fit into the category of a ‘coper’ – someone who was able to run and carry on with normal activity without pain or instability, he felt she could live without an ACL so long as they concentrated on building up the capsule. 

In this instance, besides injecting the PCL, meniscus and a damaged tendon with her blood and stem cells, he also injected the capsule.  Although we have to return several times to get PRP – spun down blood platelets – to further strengthen the capsule, with a little luck she’ll be back on the hockey pitch come September, with a knee that functions, to all intents and purposes, like a normal knee.

We left with a full nutritional and supplement plan and are now working on Anya’s rehabilitation.

For the entire week, we were witness to all manner of supposedly incurable orthopedic illness being resolved through this process:  one elderly woman so damaged with arthritis she could barely walk had become a mountain climber after her procedure; another woman whose ACL was damaged 20 years ago receiving the same treatment as Anya with the same expected outcome. Rotator cuff injuries, spinal injuries – all were open to repair without the often catastrophic effects of surgery. 

Not surprisingly, the US Food and Drug Administration does not like this one little bit. Autologous stem-cell therapy not only threatens to revolutionize orthopedic medicine as we know it. It also threatens to wipe up some £30 billion pain management drug business.  The FDA, which has been bought and paid for by the drug industry, have (unsuccessfully) challenged our doctors, who promptly sued the agency for interfering with trade. 

Recently, in an attempt to control this new medicine, the FDA ruled that your own stem cells should now be considered a ‘drug’, subject to the agency’s control. Clearly it is time to fire these drug detail men that constitute the FDA and set up a new and cleaner regulatory agency.

Only time will tell whether Anya’s treatment worked, but our doctors are very optimistic. And I, so cynical about the state of modern medicine, have had my faith restored.  These doctors – all conventionally trained – have moved beyond conventional medicine by understanding that the most powerful healer of all lies inside your own body.

The world’s most powerful healer

This week Bryan and I were witness to a miracle, the miracle of our daughter’s own body potentially healing the unhealable – with the help of a miracle in cutting-edge medicine.

This week Bryan and I were witness to a miracle, the miracle of our daughter’s own body potentially healing the unhealable – with the help of a miracle in cutting-edge medicine.

As many of you may remember, our youngest daughter Anya, just 16 at the time, was injured a year ago in a ferocious hockey game and entirely ruptured her anterior cruciate ligament, the one between the thigh and shin bones mostly responsible for allowing the knee to pivot and twist.  This is a catastrophic injury because conventional medicine has no satisfactory solution.

The British orthopedic surgeon we consulted urged us to have reconstructive surgery immediately, which entails taking a bit of her hamstring, fashioning it into a Frankenstein ligament, screwing that into her bones and hoping it takes. 

As we are no strangers to medical literature, we examined all the studies about the success of this particular operation.  Some patients – including one of our middle-aged friends – do brilliantly, and return to all sporting activities with the same ability they had prior to injury. 

The vast majority do not.  Many require multiple revision surgery.  Most lose 20 per cent of their hamstring strength. Others suffer constant pain, and although we were warned that Anya might suffer arthritis if we left things alone, studies examining patients having the surgery versus those who don’t conclude that knees left alone fare just as well as those undergoing surgery. In fact one study carried out by a major American orthopaedic medical body concluded that patients undergoing reconstructive surgery actually do worse in the long run with a greater likelihood of developing arthritis 10 years after surgery than those who just live with the injury. 

With reconstructive surgery, there is no way that doctors can guarantee that the new ligament will react in the same way as the old one – it can be too tight, too loose or have different load-bearing capabilities.  Then there were all the things that could go wrong:  the hamstring ligament is often put in the wrong angle, restricting movement and possibly, in my daughter’s case, inhibiting growth. 

Clearly, in our view, this was not even the court of last resort, as she was in no pain, moving normally, and able to do everything easily except jumping and pivoting.

At first we tried a course of prolotherapy – the best option available to us in Britain, which tends to favour the traditional reconstructive approach. The 10 injections plus exercise strengthened the knee so considerably that Anya was running and resuming normal exercise.  Her physio recommended that she attempt a trial of hockey training.  Last August, after several days of too enthusiastic training, she injured herself again – this time tearing her posterior cruciate ligament and the meniscus, the spongy tissue lining the knee. 

Anya was consigned to the bench and we to the drawing board, trying to figure out what reasonable options were left to us. 

I began investigating doctors in the US who are using the patient’s own stem cells to heal orthopedic damage.  After interviewing five doctors around the US expert in this procedure, I settled on a clinic that pioneered a method of extracting the patient’s own fat or bone marrow stem cells plus blood platelets.  I preferred them because among all the doctors carrying out this procedure, they were the first; they’d been doing it longest (10 years), they’d collected and publishing the results of their work and they were tracking all their patients.

On February 11, last week, Anya, Bryan and I flew to the States.

It required a good deal of courage on my daughter’s part, who endured giant needles, a hammering into her hip bones to extract bone marrow, and multiple blood extraction and injections over the eight days  of the procedure. On the first day, the doctors examined her with both ultrasound and an arthroscopy (which entails injecting a 6-inch needle with a camera attached inside the knee to see what is going on), an exam that confirmed all the injuries and showed that the ACL, in two pieces and very far apart, was beyond non-operative repair. 

Nevertheless, our doctor, a sport specialist as well as an orthopedic surgeon, had handled a number of athletes in a similar situation and stabilized their knees by strengthening the knee’s capsule, a ligament that encircles the knee.  Largely because Anya fit into the category of a ‘coper’ – someone who was able to run and carry on with normal activity without pain or instability, he felt she could live without an ACL so long as they concentrated on building up the capsule. 

In this instance, besides injecting the PCL, meniscus and a damaged tendon with her blood and stem cells, he also injected the capsule.  Although we have to return several times to get PRP – spun down blood platelets – to further strengthen the capsule, with a little luck she’ll be back on the hockey pitch come September, with a knee that functions, to all intents and purposes, like a normal knee.

We left with a full nutritional and supplement plan and are now working on Anya’s rehabilitation.