Radionics is a highly controversial field that claims to detect and modulate life force using electronic devices. Patients can be diagnosed and treated without even meeting the practitioner, who uses a radionic "black box" to tune into "vibrational frequencies" from a sample of hair or blood. The device is then used to "broadcast" healing frequencies back to the patient, who may be hundreds of miles away.
The seeds of radionics can be found in radiesthesia , a diagnostic technique employing pendulums or dowsing rods developed by three French priests during the early 1900s. The founding father of radionics was Albert Abrams, an American neurologist (1864–1924) who believed that his machines could, from a sample of blood, hair, or even handwriting, determine a patient's sex, race, financial status, religion, and underlying causes of illness. His therapeutic machines were hermetically sealed and were not sold, only leased on the condition that they never be opened. Investigators who examined the devices around the time of Abrams' death found nothing inside to which they could attribute potential medical benefit. The principles of distance healing were developed by a U.S. chiropractor, Ruth Drown, during the 1930s. Drown also maintained that her devices could produce x-ray-like images of a patient's condition, based solely on a blood sample. A scientific committee that examined these images in 1950 detected no recognizable anatomic structures in them, and concluded they were simply "fog patterns."
For legal reasons, most radionics practitioners and manufacturers of radionics equipment are cautious of making public pronouncements about specific health benefits. However, a journal published by radionics founder Albert Abrams claimed the technology was effective against diseases as serious as cancer, tuberculosis , and syphilis . Court testimony has indicated that similar claims are made by present-day practitioners.
Radionics advocates believe that underlying causes of diseases emit radio-like frequencies that can be detected by their equipment. A bundle of hair or a card containing a few dried drops of blood is placed into a receptacle in the machine. This "witness" is then analyzed using either a moving pendulum or a detector pad on which changes in surface tension are noted. In this way, areas of "resonance" are detected. Treatment may employ both appropriate frequencies generated by the machine, as well as the extra-sensory abilities of the healer. During the 1990s, computerized "adaptive biofeedback-type" devices were developed, allegedly capable of monitoring and responding "every 200 millionths of a second" to changes in the patient's body. Radionic treatment may be supplemented by homeopathic remedies, color therapy , and herbal extracts.
Patients need to understand that the claims of radionics are highly controversial and, in some cases, grandiose. One radionics organization based in Canada not only offers certification in 18 healing-related fields, but also advertises its willingness to advise on such diverse subjects as gambling, animal breeding, management consulting, gardening, financial investments, engineering, prospecting, and archeology. This institute claims that radionics has been proven "in hundreds of controlled studies over the past 80 years," but refuses to divulge the names of its graduates "given the controversial nature of radionics." Furthermore, this group will not correspond with any potential client until an initial fee of at least $300 has been paid in U.S. currency. Another manufacturer of radionics-type equipment claims the ability "to enter the mind of any person on this planet" and to "compel them to do your will." It is particularly important to carefully read the literature offered by radionics practitioners, which often contains revealing disclaimers. A medical opinion should be sought in all cases of serious illness.
Radionic therapy is non-invasive and has no known side effects.
Research & general acceptance
Most physicians dismiss radionics as quackery, arguing that any observed benefits are caused only by placebo effect . In the United States, medical devices must be approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and a 1998 district court decision in Minnesota determined that the sale of an unapproved radionics "black box" device violated state laws against deceptive trade practices and consumer fraud. The sale of such equipment to terminally ill patients constituted "health quackery at its worst," said Hubert Humphrey III, the state's attorney general. "This deplorable conduct aimed at vulnerable, desperate consumers is health fraud in its darkest form and will not be tolerated in Minnesota," Humphrey said. Radionics advocates, on the other hand, say they suffer from systematic government oppression.
Training & certification
The Radionic Association. Berlin House, Goose Green, Deddington, Oxford England OX5 4SZ.
Radiesthesia is also commonly known as dowsing. It is regarded principally as a mystic art that has many facets and applications. Basically, it is the process of locating the presence of an object, or assessing the energy given off by a subject, with an implement known as a dowsing rod, which is a Y-shaped hazel, beech, or alder branch or a copper rod. Dowsers may also use a pendulum, which is often weighted with a crystal or some other heavy weight. It is said that the important factor is the length of the line to which the weight is attached.
The concept of radiesthesia was known to the ancient Egyptians and Chinese; their artwork bears witness to this fact. Some estimate that dowsing may date as far back as 7,000 years.
The British Society of Dowsers was formed in the 1930s. The art was given the name radiesthesia by French priest Alex Bouly, derived from the Latin words radiation and perception. However, to many people it is still called dowsing. Modern practitioners of radiesthesia claim that their art uses a "sense" that was once commonly acknowledged, but that has been lost with time. Radionics is the process of dowsing using specially designed electrical equipment.
While some may call its usefulness to question, the least that can be said is that radiesthesia does no harm. It does not employ radiation, it does not involve the administration of chemicals, and it is noninvasive. Some radiesthesia practitioners claim that they can not only diagnose illness and potential illness, but that they can also cure the patient by altering their energy patterns.
Many different types of objects have traditionally been found with the aid of radiesthesia. Perhaps water wells most readily spring to mind. However, the list is long and includes minerals, lost objects, and people, including bodies, animals, and plants.
Practitioners specializing in this field list several uses of radiesthesia for health purposes. They claim that, in addition to locating areas and causes of disease, dowsing can indicate energy levels before and after healing sessions.
Radiesthesia is used by some who follow a holistic way of life to detect how fresh fruit and vegetables are before they buy them, claiming that the freshest produce gives off more energy than that which is not so fresh. It can also be used to assess the quality of soil and indicate steps to improve soil quality, they say.
The basic concept of radiesthesia is that there is some kind of interaction between the mind of the dowser and the object or information being sought. Practitioners refer to this interaction as the use of a kind of sixth sense, or extra sensory perception. It has also been described as a particular kind of instinct. Some who practice radiesthesia say that as many as 80% of people have the ability to dowse but many are unaware of it.
Some practice radiesthesia without even a prosthesis (a divining rod or pendulum), they just instinctively sense things. When used, a diving rod or pendulum is described as an implement that will help the dowser to focus on the object at hand.
To measure a human energy field, it should first be ascertained that the subject is not wearing any jewelry or crystals. Then the therapist should stand three paces away, facing the patient. L-rods (divining rods) should be held parallel to the ground and pointing towards the patient. The dowser's mind should be focused and a conscious decision must be taken to measure the energy field of the patient's body.
Radiesthesia is also used to pick a location to build a house for example, so as to avoid certain situations such as groundwater, geopathic stress , or any other factor that is believed to be detrimental to health. In times gone by, important buildings such as churches, hospitals, palaces, castles and homes, were commonly built after consultation with a dowser regarding the best location.
Usually, when consulting with a radiesthesia practitioner, the patient will first be asked to provide a full case history prior to radiesthesia analysis. If radionic equipment is used, a detector pad will measure energy emanations, which are known as rates, and will be used in the analysis. These rates are said to correspond to organs, diseases, psychological condition, the elements, and even to indicate which alternative therapy would be best to treat the patient.
The special equipment necessary for radiesthesia is the dowser's chosen divining implement, which may include specially designed electronic equipment. However, patients will be advised to remove jewelry and any crystals, and possibly anything metal attached to their clothes.
Those who are seeking treatment for serious disease are advised to consult an alternative practitioner with regard to a radiesthesia consultation and to mention this to their allopathic physician.
There are no known side effects associated with radiesthesia.
Research & general acceptance
Although there are many unexplained accounts of the successful use of radiesthesia, or dowsing, the practice is still the target of much ridicule and even contempt from some areas of the allopathic medical profession.
Training & certification
Since radiesthesia is considered an art, it is an acquired art more than a discipline that can be learned. However, the Radionics Institute, which was founded in 1988, offers various courses in addition to their worldwide training forum.
The American Society of Dowsers. http://www.newhampshire.com/dowsers.org/.
The British Society of Dowsers. Sycamore Cottage, Tamley Lane, Hastingleigh, Ashford, Kent TN26 5HW, United Kingdom.
The Radionics Association. Baerlein House, Goose Green, Deddington, Oxon. OX15 0SZ, United Kingdom. (01869) 338852. http://www.interlog.com/~radionic/#institute.
"Introduction to dowsing." http://home.interstat.net/~slawcio/dowsing.html.
A development of the art of dowsing (water witching) which extends the specific use of indicators such as rod and pendulum form water finding, to various additional uses such as the tracing of missing persons, treasure hunting, and/or the diagnosis and treatment of disease. The term radiesthésie was coined in 1930 by the Abbé Bouly, in France, where the use of a pendulum has largely replaced the divining rod. L'Association des Amis de la Radiesthésie was founded in 1930 and the British Society of Dowsers in 1933. International Congresses of Radiesthesia are held regularly in Europe. The terms "dowsing" and "radiesthesia" have become virtually synonymous, and in France "radiesthésie" is used to include all forms of dowsing.
The dowser or radiesthetist is an individual who is sensitive (and often unconsciously so) to hidden objects or other information and uses a simple indicator, primarily a dowsing rod or pendulum, to amplify this sensitivity. It is still not entirely clear if, or just what kind of, radiation might be involved, and many investigators believe the individual to be rather like a psychic medium, and certainly some of the special applications of radiesthesia seem nearer to ESP than conventional physics.
The pendulum is usually a small ball attached to a thread on the end of a short stick. It is best to use a nonspun thread or thin nylon since the twist in a thread may communicate extraneous movement to the pendulum bob. The stick is held just above its connection with the thread and the pendulum bob tends to gyrate or oscillate. The length of the thread can be adjusted by winding it round the stick, so that the pendulum movement is clearly visible. There are characteristic pendulum movements relating to various substances, indicated by the number of gyrations and whether their movement is clockwise or counterclockwise. Like the dowsing rod, the pendulum also seems to be drawn toward hidden objects.
The pendulum is often used to diagnose disease conditions in the body or indicate remedies. The pendulum is first adjusted over a healthy part of the body. When moved to an unhealthy area its movement changes.
Another use of the pendulum is simply to answer questions put to it, rather in the manner of a ouija board; "Yes" is usually indicated by a clockwise gyration and "No" by counterclockwise movement. An even more psychic use of the pendulum is known as "teleradiesthesia" or "superpendulism." Instead of using a pendulum over an actual area in which underground water or minerals are sought, the operator holds the pendulum over a map of the district. Some claim that a subtle link exists between a locality and its symbolic representation on a map. Some teleradiesthetists have also used a map to trace the movements of a missing person.
Some operators use a hollow pendulum that accommodates a sample of the material sought. Others hold something connected with the object of their inquiries in one hand while using the pendulum in the other. Since the indications of a pendulum are subtle and may also be deflected by conscious or unconscious muscular movements, some preliminary study is recommended before practice. There is considerable literature on the subject and various reports of its use.
In the United States, the American Society of Dowsers, which encourages the practice of various forms of dowsing and gives guidance and information on the subject, may be contacted at P.O. Box 24, Brainerd St., Danville, VT 05828. In Great Britain, the British Society of Dowsers is concerned with all aspects of dowsing and radiesthesia and publishes a journal. It is located at Sycamore Cottage, Tamley Lane, Hastingleigh, Ash-ford, Kent, TN25 5HW, England.
Beasse, Pierre. A New and Rational Treatise of Dowsing according to the methods of Physical Radiesthesia. France, 1941.
Cameron, Verne. Map Dowsing. El Carismo, 1971.
Cooper, Irving S., and Willi Kowa. The Pendulum: Operational Practice and Theory. Haywards Heath, UK: Academic Publications, 1978.
De France, Henry. The Elements of Dowsing. London, 1971.
Franklin, T. Bedford. Radiations. London, 1949.
Hitching, Francis. Pendulum: The Psi Connection. London: Fontana, 1977.
Nielsen, Greg, and Joseph Polansky. Pendulum Power: A Mystery You Can See, A Power you Can Feel. New York: Destiny Books, 1977; Wellingborough, UK: Excalibur, 1981.
Wethered, V. D. A Radiesthetic Approach to Health and Homeopathy, or Health and the Pendulum. London, 1950.
The instrumental detection of hypothesized vital energy patterns as a means of diagnosis and therapy of disease. In radionic theory, all living things radiate an electro-magnetic field which has different characteristics in health and disease conditions. Energy patterns are given a numerical value or "rate" usually calibrated on the dials of a diagnostic apparatus called a black box. The original black box, sometimes called the E.R.A. or Oscilloclast, was the invention of Dr. Albert Abrams, a San Francisco physician.
The black box consisted of several variable rheostats and a thin sheet of rubber mounted over a metal plate. A blood sample from the patient was put into the machine, which was connected with a metal plate placed on the forehead of a healthy person. By tapping on the abdomen of this person, the doctor determined the disease of the patient according to "areas of dullness" in relation to dial readings on the apparatus. This strange procedure brought together the special sensitivities of radiesthesia or dowsing and medical auscultation.
After the death of Abrams in 1924, his procedures were developed by Ruth Drown of the United States in the 1930s and George De la Warr in Britain. De la Warr devised black boxes that dispensed with the auscultation techniques of Abrams and even an apparatus which produced photographs relating to the condition of the patient whose sample was placed in the machine. De la Warr claimed that they registered a radiation pattern showing the shape and chemical structure of the radiating body, and given a suitable sample the camera plate would register not only regional tissue but also its pathology.
It should be noted that Abrams was attacked by the American Medical Association, but in England a committee of the British Medical Association gave him some initial approval in 1924. Then in 1950 Drown was given a test under the auspices of the American Medical Association. It was completely negative and had the effect of driving radionics out of the United States. Defenders of radionics have argued that the worth of the diagnostic techniques is based upon the consciousness of the operator, a fact which in itself takes the practice out of the realm of medical science and into the field of parapsychology and spiritual healing.
In England, the De la Warr Laboratories designs and manufactures radionic instruments and offers diagnosis and treatment for patients. It may be contacted at Raleigh Park, Oxford, UK. There is also a Radionic Association in Britain, which trains and represents radionic practitioners, located at Field House, Peaslake, Guildford, Surrey.
In the late 1960s, William A. Tiller, then chairman of the Department of Material Medicine at Stanford University, reported favorably on his experience in 1971. In 1975 an important development in American radionics studies was the U.S. Radionic Congress held in Indianapolis, Indiana, April 19-20, 1975, at which papers on research in the field were presented and discussed. Amongst those present was Thomas G. Hieronymus, regarded as the dean of American radionics researchers, whose patented invention of a machine to analyze a new type of radiation in 1949 led to American interest in radionics under the name psionics. Psionic was a term coined by John Campbell, Jr., editor of Astounding Science Fiction, to denote a combination of radionics and psi phenomena. He gave instructions for building a Hieronymus machine in the June 1956 issue of ASF.
Abrams, Albert. New Concepts in Diagnosis and Treatment. Physico-Clinical, 1924.
Day, Langston & G. De la Warr. New Worlds Beyond the Atom. London, 1956.
Inglis, Brian. The Case for Unorthodox Medicine. New York: Berkeley Publishing, 1969.
Proceedings of the Scientific and Technical Congress of Radionics and Radiesthesia London May 16-18, 1950, London, n.d.
Tiller, William A. "Radionics, Radiesthesia and Physics." In The Varieties of Healing Experience. Palo Alto, Calif.: Academy of Paraspsychology & Medicine, 1971.
Young, James Harvey. The Medical Messiahs. Princeton N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1967.