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Body Electric: Electromagnetism And The Foundation Of Life

Body Electric: Electromagnetism And The Foundation Of Life

3.8 8
by Robert Becker, Gary Selden, Maria D. Guarnaschelli (Editor)

The Body Electric tells the fascinating story of our bioelectric selves. Robert O. Becker, a pioneer in the filed of regeneration and its relationship to electrical currents in living things, challenges the established mechanistic understanding of the body. He found clues to the healing process in the long-discarded theory that electricity is vital to


The Body Electric tells the fascinating story of our bioelectric selves. Robert O. Becker, a pioneer in the filed of regeneration and its relationship to electrical currents in living things, challenges the established mechanistic understanding of the body. He found clues to the healing process in the long-discarded theory that electricity is vital to life. But as exciting as Becker's discoveries are, pointing to the day when human limbs, spinal cords, and organs may be regenerated after they have been damaged, equally fascinating is the story of Becker's struggle to do such original work. The Body Electric explores new pathways in our understanding of evolution, acupuncture, psychic phenomena, and healing.

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HarperCollins Publishers
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6.50(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.92(d)

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The Body Electric

Electromagnetism And The Foundation Of Life
By Robert Becker

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2006 Robert Becker
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0688069711

Chapter One

Hydra's Heads and
Medusa's Blood

There is only one health, but diseases are many. Likewise, there appears to be one fundamental force that heals, although the myriad schools of medicine all have their favorite ways of cajoling it into action.

Our prevailing mythology denies the existence of any such generalized force in favor of thousands of little ones sitting on pharmacists' shelves, each one potent against only a few ailments or even a part of one. This system often works fairly well, especially for treatment of bacterial diseases, but it's no different in kind from earlier systems in which a specific saint or deity, presiding over a specific healing herb, had charge of each malady and each part of the body. Modern medicine didn't spring full-blown from the heads of Pasteur and Lister a hundred years ago.

If we go back further, we find that most medical systems have combined such specifics with a direct, unitary appeal to the same vital principle in all illnesses. The inner force can be tapped in many ways, but all are variations of four main, overlapping patterns: faith healing, magic healing, psychic healing, and spontaneous healing. Althoughscience derides all four, they sometimes seem to work as well for degenerative diseases and long-term healing as most of what Western medicine can offer.

Faith healing creates a trance of belief in both patient and practitioner, as the latter acts as an intercessor or conduit between the sick mortal and a presumed higher power. Since failures are usually ascribed to a lack of faith by the patient, this brand of medicine has always been a gold mine for charlatans. When bona fide, it seems to be an escalation of the placebo effect, which produces improvement in roughly one third of subjects who think they're being treated but are actually being given dummy pills in tests of new drugs. Faith healing requires even more confidence from the patient, so the disbeliever probably can prevent a cure and settle for the poor satisfaction of "I told you so." If even a few of these oft-attested cases are genuine, however, the healed one suddenly finds faith turned into certainty as the withered arm aches with unaccustomed sensation, like a starved animal waking from hibernation.

Magical healing shifts the emphasis from the patient's faith to the doctor's trained will and occult learning. The legend of Teta, an Egyptian magician from the time of Khufu (Cheops), builder of the Great Pyramid, can serve as an example. At the age of 110, Teta was summoned into the royal presence to demonstrate his ability to rejoin a severed head to its body, restoring life. Khufu ordered a prisoner beheaded, but Teta discreetly suggested that he would like to confine himself to laboratory animals for the moment. So a goose was decapitated. Its body was laid at one end of the hall, its head at the other. Teta repeatedly pronounced his words of power, and each time, the head and body twitched a little closer to each other, until finally the two sides of the cut met. They quickly fused, and the bird stood up and began cackling. Some consider the legendary miracles of Jesus part of the same ancient tradition, learned during Christ's precocious childhood in Egypt.

Whether or not we believe in the literal truth of these particular accounts, over the years so many otherwise reliable witnesses have testified to healing "miracles" that it seems presumptuous to dismiss them all as fabrications. Based on the material presented in this book, I suggest Coleridge's "willing suspension of disbelief" until we understand healing better. Shamans apparently once served at least some of their patients well, and still do where they survive on the fringes of the industrial world. Magical medicine suggests that our search for the healing power isn't so much an exploration as an act of remembering something that was once intuitively ours, a form of recall in which the knowledge is passed on or awakened by initiation and apprenticeship to the man or woman of power.

Sometimes, however, the secret needn't be revealed to be used. Many psychic healers have been studied, especially in the Soviet Union, whose gift is unconscious, unsought, and usually discovered by accident. One who demonstrated his talents in the West was Oskar Estebany. A Hungarian Army colonel in the mid-1930s, Estebany noticed that horses he groomed got their wind back and recovered from illnesses faster than those cared for by others. He observed and used his powers informally for years, until, forced to emigrate after the 1956 Hungarian revolution, he settled in Canada and came to the attention of Dr. Bernard Grad, a biologist at McGill University. Grad found that Estebany could accelerate the healing of measured skin wounds made on the backs of mice, as compared with controls. He didn't let Estebany touch the animals, but only place his hands near their cages, because handling itself would have fostered healing. Estebany also speeded up the growth of barley plants and reactivated ultraviolet-damaged samples of the stomach enzyme trypsin in much the same way as a magnetic field, even though no magnetic field could be detected near his body with the instruments of that era.

The types of healing we've considered so far have trance and touch as common factors, but some modes don't even require a healer. The spontaneous miracles at Lourdes and other religious shrines require only a vision, fervent prayer, perhaps a momentary connection with a holy relic, and intense concentration on the diseased organ or limb. Other reports suggest that only the intense concentration is needed, the rest being aids to that end. When Diomedes, in the fifth book of the Iliad, dislocates Aeneas' hip with a rock, Apollo takes the Trojan hero to a temple of healing and restores full use of his leg within minutes. Hector later receives the same treatment after a rock in the chest fells him. We could dismiss these accounts . . .


Excerpted from The Body Electric by Robert Becker Copyright © 2006 by Robert Becker. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Body Electric: Electromagnetism And The Foundation Of Life 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
BIOELECTRIC1 More than 1 year ago
Robert O. Becker has the genius to ''ask the right questions'', then do completely ground-breaking simple experiments, that were worthy of a Nobel. His first paper was published in Nature ! To this day, almost no one in so-called ''stem cell research'' seems aware ! that he discovered how to generate human stem cells, using a simple or silver-on-nylon dressing, pulsed with a tiny electric charge. I noted a comment in one review, claiming that Becker was so ignorant of ''science'' that he used the term ''megahertz'' in referring to energy levels. This so-called ''REVIEWER'' is the one ''IGNORANT'' of basic simple physics. Energy is directly proportional to frequency!! This is ''plancks LAW ''. As frequency goes up, so does energy of light photons, particles etc. Plancks law is simple E=hv. Energy equals a constant x FREQUENCY. It is sad that someone so ABYSMALLY ignorant, can write a review and get it published here. E = hv is plancks LAW. a SIMPLE LAW OF PHYSICS. In words, E or Energy equals plancks constant ''h'' multiplied by the FREQUENCY , v ( as in MEGAHERTZ !) E=hv is fundamental LAW of physics, and quantum mechanics too. The previous writer's comments on Beckers so-calld ignorance'' should be an embarrassment to Amazon. Shame such ignorant mis-leading non-sense can be put up by Amazon... without even a cursory review. Robert O. Becker was a genius like so many, simply far ahead of the pack. This is a must read book. You will be astounded by what Becker knew, and published, and that it is vital to stem cell reseaarch, and yet !! STILL NOT BEING USED IN MEDICINE, today, tho discovered 30 years ago!
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's hard to believe that Dr. Becker and his work of Nobel Prize caliber are so little known. This book is Dr. Becker's own story of his scientific breaking through of one of science's greatest taboos. He proved the body is highly electromagnetic in a way that medicine had emphatically believed it had proven did not exist. His story is a first hand account of a researcher working steadfastly, tirelessly, against obstacle after obstacle. How he overcomes the obstacles to scientific knowledge are wonderful from the standpoint of the scientist. His story of the individual and institutitional obstacles is an interesting education in our social politics. Dr. Becker's brilliant work and the revolutionary significance of it is still unknown. I hope he gets the breakthrough he deserves, and that his work deserves. I nominate Robert O. Becker, M.D., for the Nobel Prize in Medicine. The work behind my nomination is described in "The Body Electric, The Electromagnetic F?oundations of Life."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fascinating book! I received a toxic brain exposure in 2009 from a high powered utility solar photovoltaic system that I was commissioning that left me with significant memory issues. This was one of the many books that I purchased to try and understand what had happened to me. The book does a good job of explaining the research that the authors were performing in the area of electrical cellular regeneration and the techniques that they were using. Today, we know that irradiating water with certain radio frequencies can alter the growth rates of mammals that drink it! The book is a good overview about what was known in 1985 and it is surprising to see how much was known back then and the extensive denials of this information that corporations and governments are routinely engaging in today. As Devra Davis states "Most people have no idea that OSHA is a ghost and has been so for years". Since that time cell phones, cell phone towers and radio frequency (RF) transmitting meters have come along and our knowledge has progressed. I found that I had to develop my own knowledge in this area to deal with the more recent environmental exposures that this book does not cover. This book is an excellent foundation in the electrical dynamics of the human body that you would want to supplement with the more recent health books regarding alternate energy systems, cellular communications and transmitting RF utility meters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book improves ones' understanding of bodily functions which, in turn, helps one improve self care.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you're going to try and dupe the unsuspecting with your own brand of new-age nonsense science it would be best to at least use a unit of measure that describes energy. 'Doctor' Becker fails even that simple test of intellect by using a scientific term to describe something it is unrelated to (energy). Megahertz is a measurement of frequency which has nothing to do with energy. If that basic fact isn't enough to make you THINK then by all means you'll enjoy this waste of paper. Buy it and read it if you enjoy being fleeced.