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FRESH VIEWS ON WATER

In the spirit of the free and open-minded inquiry which Sheldrake advocates in The Science Delusion, there are a number of scientists who are exploring new frontiers of knowledge. For example, the Scientific and Medical Network (www.scimednet.org) is one group which exists with an explicit commitment to provide a safe forum for the critical and open-minded discussion of ideas that go beyond conventional paradigms in science, medicine and philosophy.

One of the simplest molecules in the universe, combining two of its most common elements, hydrogen and oxygen, is water. By weight it composes over half of every human being, and is essential for all organic life. Despite its simplicity, some of the properties of water are highly unusual – a well-known example is the fact that ice is actually less dense than liquid water. This vital fluid has attracted a number of investigators over the years: an early pioneer was the Austrian Viktor Schauberger, who explored the nature of vortices in water. Recent work which looks at the electrical properties of water is currently underway at the University of Washington, under the leadership of Dr. Gerald Pollack, Professor of Bioengineering. His work challenges a number of scientific orthodoxies, including the notion that positive and negative electrical charges can remain separated in water.

Pollack’s main focus is on the interaction between surfaces and the layer of water immediately next to them. Having used a wide variety of techniques to investigate this layer, Pollack and his group have come to the unexpected conclusion that there is a high degree of structuring in the water layer next to certain surfaces, which is many millions of molecules thick. This 'structured water' behaves quite differently from the bulk water. One of the most interesting observations is that a difference in charge exists between the structured water and the bulk, creating a battery. This effect may be implicated in one of the most important – and most efficient – biochemical reactions on the planet, photosynthesis.

The wide-ranging significance of Pollack's work calls for further investigation. For example, if he is correct that there is a percentage of structured water in the cells of all living organisms, and that this percentage can be increased by the application of radiant energy, then implications for healing through the use of the electromagnetic spectrum emerge. Pollack also hypothesises that the structuring of water through radiation may have been implicated in the origins of life on our planet.

For more information on Dr. Pollack's work, see http://faculty.washington.edu/ghp/