Getting a charge out of life? If not you should be. Believe it or not, we’re being buzzed all the time and from the most unlikely sources.
We have known for a long time that man and beast alike exude energy fields. Whatever thoughts and feelings either one entertains, although not expressed openly, issue forth invisibly like radiation permeates the air or like our breath escapes from our mouths. In fact, we influence our surrounding environment depending on our attitudes. Perhaps this accounts for why, when meeting someone for the first time, we might feel a deep kinship or even a strong antipathy, but couldn’t say exactly why.
The matter, as the saying goes, gets more complicated.
More recently science has been exploring this mystical kind of communion that also occurs in the plant world. Plants and flowers think and feel. Our world’s vegetation is as intuitive as sentient beings are. If your flowers or plants are drooping lately, it may not be about water or lack of sunlight; you may want to check what’s been on your mind. Your attitude and those negative vibes you’ve been harboring could be doing your plants in.
Cleve Backster is America’s foremost expert on the science of lie detectors. He teaches police agencies on their use. He made a remarkable discovery that changed his life and the way science understands the world of vegetation. By attaching electrodes to a plant, he was able to document that plants issue electric currents not only when physically assaulted, but also to any intent to harm them we might have in mind. He demonstrated how, when he conceived of the idea of burning a plant leaf to see its reaction, his thoughts alone caused the plant alarm. It elicited an electronic response similar to how a human would react when sensing danger. Plants read our thoughts. When near people who love plants, plants thrive. These electrical fields seem to be our universal connectors.
Backster’s initial discovery has been controversial among scientists. However, more data is gathering exponentially. The theory has become compelling enough that the Department of Defense is investigating what potential the phenomena might suggest for the military. The Russian government is also taking a hard look at ESP to find ways to “speak to seeds” to make them happy so they grow vigorously. Mind control is being investigated by Russians and Americans; strange to think how plants and flowers might become the signature weapons of the future. Indeed, it is a mind-blowing thought to consider how flower power may inspire the mother of all weaponry. It is also a sad commentary that the marvelous discoveries of science that can bring us closer to others, even heal us, are quickly examined for their capacity for
Still, I find Backster’s discovery promising from a happier point of view. It illustrates the depths of primal interconnections that comprise all life on the planet. It’s about getting a charge out of life.
A soft-spoken Ph.D. from Japan, Ken Hashimoto studies the habits of plants. He is the managing director and the chief of research at Fuji Electronic Industries. Intrigued by Backster’s work, he tried a related but different experiment. He contrived a device to transcribe the energy charges he elicited from a cactus onto a graph. Then he designed a way to transpose the tracings of the graph to convert them into sounds thus, literally, giving a voice to the cactus. It didn’t go right at first, which, is the way of all great discoveries; we learn as much from our failures as our successes.
When Dr. Hashimoto conducted the experiment initially it hadn’t yielded the anticipated electric charge he expected from the cactus. He went over his procedures scrupulously, but couldn’t account for the lack of response. Coincidentally, Mrs. Hashimoto was a sophisticated botanist and always elicited high-charged responses from most any vegetation when in its presence. When Dr. Hashimoto conducted the experiment again, this time in Mrs. Hashimoto’s loving presence, the cactus responded positively with electronic charges. When the charges were converted to graph readings, and from the tracings of the graph readings into sounds, guess what? The sounds were eerily reminiscent of Mrs. Hashimoto’s affectionate voice. My guess is that the good doctor was a brilliant scientist in conceiving the experiment, but his wife, a more feeling person, had the bed side manner to make it work. It takes heart to make even high-tech challenges succeed. Seems like when we’re trying to communicate cross species, we won’t get anywhere without putting our hearts into it.
I think maintaining an open heart influences how we can speak effectively to others of our own species.
We are currently experiencing a time when the world has grown adversarial; there’s increasing violence and anger; we are engaged in building walls, not bridges – some walls in the literal sense, others racial barriers. We face unchallenged economic inequality. Religious voices have grown more strident. These are disconnects, many politically designed to divide and alienate us one from another. It’s hopeful to think that science is revealing new ways in which we are intimately connected, not only to others, but to all the creation with which we share space. Science, once regarded as indifferent and even suspicious of our spiritual aspirations, has now joined poets, painters, artists, mystics, visionaries, and humanitarians in satisfying that age old yearning our hearts never fully relinquish – that atavistic desire to give a voice to the earth, to glory in the creation . . . and delight in the deep mystery of our being.
Failing to get a charge out of life? Stop! Smell and listen, and then touch the flowers. They’re holding messages for us.